[Ed Note: This post is one that I wish I read six months ago, when I started to exercise regularly… Maybe I’ll help a few people who are in the same boat… or maybe I am full of myself. Take your pick.]
I started a home exercise regimen earlier this year. And had no idea where to begin. All I knew I did not want to join a gym. If I was going to exercise at all, it would be at home. But workout DVDs are a dime a dozen these days. Each year, hundreds of titles are released. The plethora of choices is overwhelming. Which one should I choose? A popular series (Biggest Loser, The Firm, P90X, etc.)??? Personalities (Jeri Love, Billy Blanks, Cathe Freidrich)?!?!??? Or with the type of exercise (Interval, Sumba/Latin Dance, Kickboxing, etc.) (See end of post. Trust me.) When you are a beginning exerciser, it’s a big step to commit. And I almost didn’t…
My initial plan was easy… I already had a copy of Jillian Michael’s 30 Day Shred. I started with her 20 minute workout… which kicked my butt. (I realized how completely out of shape I was…) As I became stronger, I added her longer workouts to my routine while increasing my weights.
Why did I stick with her? I dunno. I have never watched The Biggest Loser. (Actually, I don’t watch TV at all.) I suppose after observing how highly ranked she is on Amazon.com, I continued to buy her DVDs. And well, she works for me. (But, really, I am willing to switch instructors at any time.)
So without further ado, here’s my Jillian Michaels workout rotation. I decided that I would do one day of pure cardio, one day of strength training, two days combination of cardio/strength, and one day of yoga. (I exercise five days a week)
Day 1: (Strength/Cardio):
30 Day Shred (Level 3 followed by Level 2) – approx 45 mins.
- 5 lb weights (I’m still a weakling; I’ll be happy when I’m lifting tens);
- Two knee braces and one ankle brace (don’t ask… I’m still quite banged up from a car accident that occurred a few years ago);
- A glass of water to recoup with between intervals;
- A headband to block the pouring of sweat into my eyes.
Day 2: Bikram Yoga – 90 minutes at a yoga studio
- Yoga Mat (natch);
- large towel to cover said yoga mat;
- Large bottle of water, frozen prior to arrival to drink throughout session;
- My headband (in a 105 degree heated room, you’re going to sweat and sweat some more…);
- A pair of flippy floppies (because I don’t walk to walk through anyone else’s sweat);
- An extra towel to mop up some more of my sweat;
- Toiletries to shower with afterwards. Nobody in the public sphere should see me straight after a Bikram Yoga session.
Day 3: Strength Training
No More Trouble Zones -55 mins.
Jillian Michaels incorporates compound moves with weight training, so you’re still doing some cardio… and yes, pouring down sweat. The lunges are no joke. And the abs training is pure kick ass.
Equipment: See Day 1
Day 4: Pure Cardio
Banish Fat, Boost Metabolism – 55 mins.
Man, oh man. After 3 months of this video, it still shocks my system. Oddly, as I’ve been doing this DVD more, I become even MORE tired. This probably happens because now I can focus on form rather than getting through the workout.
Equipment: Everything above from Day 1 except weights
Day 5: This is where I need your help. Right now, I’m repeating Day 1’s workout, but I want to move on from it. I’m not getting the same type of results from this routine anymore, so I’m going to buy another DVD… suggestions? (I would prefer that it combine cardio and strength, and last about an hour.)
Day 6: If I’m truly motivated, or ate too much junk the previous week, I’ll do Jillian Michael’s Six Day Six Pack, which is an all-ab workout. And boy, do I feel it afterwards. It’s only 35 minutes though, so I haven’t incorporated it into my workout above.
So now that I’ve spilled my exercise secrets, I’d love to hear yours. (Even if it does involve expensive gym equipment.) What works for you? Any recommendations for me? Help an (Indian) sister out! (And I can say that, not because I’m cool (which I’m so not…), but because I have a sister…)
*** – Interrobang. My favorite punctuation, period. Because it just sounds naughty…