Wednesday, January 12, 2011


Did you resolve to exercise more . . . or at all . . . this new year?

If so, I want to share this new workout I've been doing.  Well, it's not new but it's new to me.  And, well, actually I've been doing it since September.  It's The Biggest Loser's  Jillian Michaels' 30 Day Shred.   
What prompted me to try it, was reading about it here from 

I had found myself at a point where I really needed a change in my workout.  I've always been good about exercising pretty much all my adult life.
My diet and caloric intake is what I have troubles with!  

Back in the early 80's, I had a membership at an Elaine Powers Figure Salon, remember them?  Then after Hubby and I married, we joined a health and fitness club, and I was a regular in the aerobics classes 4 or 5 times a week.  I even took prenatal exercise classes at the local Y when I was pregnant.  After Son No. 2 was born, I started exercising more at home.

I bought a step with tapes and we purchased a LifeCycle.

The step I kept, but we evolved from a LifeCycle to a treadmill about 10 years ago.

I started jogging about eight years ago, four years after my third was born.  I had gained  A LOT of weight (65 pounds!) while preggo wth Son No. 3, 
and it was saloooow coming off.

This pic was taken Easter 1998.
I had ONE more month to go and was miserable!
Oh, believe me, the whole jog/running thing was a process.  It started out mostly walking with a bit of jogging thrown in, until I was jogging/running more than I was walking.  Then, finally, I was able to run 3 miles at a time.  Trust me when I tell that I didn't turn into one of those types of runners.  The ones who truly need to get out there for their release, to get in the zone, and get mentally carried away.  No, not me.  I had, have, a love/hate relationship with running. It certainly seemed to give me more bang for my buck in terms of calorie burn, but I didn't love it.  It was like brushing my teeth.  I knew I had to do it to stay relatively fit and healthy.

After years of running 3 or 4 times a week, mixing in step workouts and kick boxing on the off-running days, for 35 to 45 minutes, adding in 20 or 30 minutes of resistance with weights, then another 10 or 15 minutes of abs . . . pheewww . . . I felt like I was spending hours a week working out.  It was getting too time consuming, and I was getting bored.

By now, I'm sure you're all thinking "geez, woman, get to the point!".  I guess I just wanted to illustrate how much I exercise, and how I've done and tried just about everything, but how much I'm getting out of The Shred workout!

Jillian's 30 Day Shred, in my opinion, is a darn good workout.  The first time I did it, I was sweating as much in 20 minutes doing her workout as I do after 30 minutes on the treadmill.  Oh, and that's the beauty of her workout, 20 minutes and your done!  Even the busiest person can find 20 minutes a day to exercise.

This workout uses the principal of muscle confusion with a quick pace ~ no resting.  Jillian calls it the 3-2-1 Interval System, emphasizing on strength training primarily. And it's a lot of old school moves ~ jumping jacks, squats, lunges, butt-kicks, push-ups.  She throws in some core-building moves, as well, in the way of plank-type exercises.  No fancy dance moves, and not a lot of high impact.  She incorporates small muscle movement with large ones; i.e., static lunges while doing arm curls.

The workouts are in 3 gradual levels of intensity, with 3 circuits in each level.  Each of the 3 circuits in each Level consists of 3 minutes of strength, 2 minutes of cardio and 1 minute of abs.  Obviously, you begin with Level 1 until you feel ready and strong enough to proceed to Level 2, etc.  One of the keys to the success of this workout, however, is you really should do it everysingle. day.  I was able to go 17 days straight when I first started doing it.  But quite honestly, I needed a break so I took a day off and went on to do another 2 weeks straight.  My results were more loss of inches than pounds.  I didn't see a huge shift on the scale, but I could definitely see and feel a difference in my legs, butt, waist and arms.  And I was an avid exerciser before!  I'm pretty sure if I'd seriously tweaked my diet 
{so hard for me because I love food and love to eat!}
I would have seen a bigger overall fat loss.

After a couple months of doing exclusively Jillian's workout, I did start mixing in some of my old routine ~ treadmill, step and kick boxing ~ just to mix it up a bit and add some variety.

This DVD can be found just about everywhere.  I ordered mine from Amazon, but I've seen it at Walmart and many other stores.  Also, and I don't know if this may be a regional thing, but Level 1 of the workout can be viewed for free on Verizon Fios On Demand. {Hit the On Demand button on the remote, scroll down to Browse All, click over and scroll down to Free, click over and scroll down to Health and Home, click over and scroll down to Exercise TV, click over and scroll down until you find Jillian's workouts.}
So, if any of you may be interested in The Shred,  this is a perfect way to give it a trial run before purchasing the DVD.  Remember, you'll also need 3 to 5 pound hand weights, and possibly a yoga mat for the floor work.

So, there you have it.  My very long and drawn-out exercise history, and review of the 30 Day Shred.  If you decide to try it out, I'd love to hear your opinions.  I've been singing this workout's praise to many of my friends.  I'm hoping by Spring I can get my mindset into eating a little better, more healthy, and continuing this workout, that by the time warm weather rolls around I might look a bit better than last summer ;o)

Thanks for visiting!
Leave a comment so I can get to know you.


Lisa said...

may need to try that. I stopped working out 6 months ago and pack on a lot of weight. That pic is too funny-I wouldn't even know that was you. You have improved with age like a fine wine my friend.

Sassy Marsha said...

Good on you!! I dislike exercising immensely but it is a necessity!!!

Step, Jazzercise, personal trainer, been there, done that, I need motivation. I am back on our treadmill though!! Need to get that exercise ball blown-up so I can start doing my weights!

I'm thinking of hosting a Wednesday "weigh-in" party (see today's post if you're interested and let me know!)


Kerin said...

Way to go Carla!
These days I'm gettig my workouts in by doing major home renovation :)
I have done hundreds, thousands of steps.....up and down the ladder :)

Paula said...

Wow that looks intense, I know I couldn't do it. I can run around a tennis court for two hours but in the winter I'm just strolling on the treadmill with a good book! Hope it works for you~ wish I had some of your ambition!!

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