245 of 286 people found the following review helpful
- Published on Amazon.com
I've only had this set for about a week. I started with workout 1 and have been alternating in sets of 3 per the included guide so workout 1, workout 2, cardio, then back to workout 1. I am not following the enclosed diet plan as it just doesn't suit my needs but I do eat as healthy as possible since I have high cholesterol (lots of veggies, very low saturated fats, watching the carbs, eating lean meats, etc.) As far as the DVDs themselves go, I love Jillian's attitude. I love the way she likes to have fun with her workout group on the DVDs and isn't afraid to shout at and motivate her people. It's a very positive environment that Jillian's created but she's also honest and says flat out when one of the exercises is gonna suck.
Couple of points: 1) you will want a good set of dumb bells. I bought a set here on Amazon and they're very nice, 2lb to 5lb. Go heaver if you're used to using weights in your workouts. 2) you will need some kind of exercise stretch cord. Again, I bought one here at Amazon for about 7 bucks and it works great. I'd go with a medium weight cord unless you're used to using one in your workouts and feel you can use a heavier one.
First day, first workout kicked, my, butt! I was soooo sore! I sweated profusely, could barely breathe and felt weak for hours afterwards, nauseous and very wobbily. I hadn't realized just how out of shape I really was! I don't think I've ever done a real workout in my entire life until I started these DVDs! I was used to doing 1/2 hour on my exercise bike 6 out of 7 days a week. This helped me maintain my current weight (in the high 150's [I'm female, about 5'7" btw to give some perspective]) but it didn't offer me a full body workout and certainly didn't get me in shape. The bike got boring so I looked for something better. I think I've found it but we'll see if I can keep it up. I really want to do the full 90 days but read on about my concerns.
Second day, second workout, not as bad as day 1, surprisingly. I still felt sore but the muscles I'd worked the day before were given a rest as different muscle groups are worked in the second video. I felt, hey, I can do this, I can stick with it. Then, there's the cardio. Again, I felt like a DVD had kicked my a**! But it felt pretty good afterward and I still thought, hey I can stick with this and really tone and sculpt my body and get a good aerobic workout too.
I took a break on the 4th day simply because of my personal schedule. Started next day with workout 1 again. Whew! Still rather difficult and I was really feeling it after but the nausea and wobbly-ness weren't there so I was happy. Yesterday...OW! I don't know what I did but I have to say, be careful when doing these DVDs. They are NOT beginner DVDs. I ripped a muscle in my glut and hamstring yesterday doing one of the exercises from workout 2 that I had done only a few days before with perfect success. As I continued with the workout I ripped something in my right arm. Again, just following the DVD the same way I had done the first time. Don't get me wrong, I am NOT blaming the DVDs here. I still think this is an excellent program. I'm blaming myself for thinking my body could just jump into something totally new and very intense.
I'm worried now that I won't be able to do the cardio today because of my injured muscles. I may have to modify the workouts so this doesn't happen again, which, to me, defeats the purpose of the program. :( I feel like if I stop now to give my muscles time to heal I won't want to start again.
So, if you are out of shape (like me), I would probably NOT choose this set to begin with. Go with something a little lighter so you don't injure yourself. On the other hand, if you feel you are in shape but want something more intense than your regular workout, go for it! Jillian really packs a ton of energy into just 1/2 hour a day! We'll see how things go for me. I will try to remember update this review at a later time so my progress can help you decide if you want to purchase this set.
Woot! I survived the first 2 weeks! I have some observations, tips, and cautions for y'all so you can make an even more informed purchase decision.
1. OW! This is a WORK-out. If you are not prepared to WORK your a** off for this, don't waste your money. Decide exactly what it is you want and why you are doing this to yourself. As Jillian says in one of the videos, "If you don't have a why, you will find the how almost impossible." I'm still red-faced, drenched in sweat, and out of breath after 2 weeks of doing just the first 2 workouts and first cardio disks. If you aren't willing to give 100% to each workout then don't waste your money.
2. I'm definitely seeing results! My muscles are getting toned up, my upper back chub (in the bra area) is gone, and I can look in the mirror and say hello to an actual waist because my upper abs are starting to look pretty good! Believe it or not my shoulders look and feel a lot better too. I am less tense there after doing one of these workouts because there is quite a bit of upper body work. My size 12 pants are looser. I have more energy. I no longer get out of breath going up a flight of stairs! On the other hand, it's only been two weeks. I haven't actually weighed myself but I still have "trouble zones" like flappy underarms and thick thighs which ticks me off! :( Maybe those will be "fixed" later. I feel like I'm not so much losing weight as I am toning my muscles. We'll see how it goes.
3. Watch each video FIRST before you do any of the workouts. You will not have time to study each move before Jillian moves into it. I even practice some of the moves a day or so before I do the actual workout for the first time just to make sure my body knows what to do. Remember you only have a half an hour to do this. Stopping the video to get into position defeats the purpose of the fast calorie-burning muscle toning workouts. Also this will prevent you from accidentally pulling something while doing the actual workout.
4. Drink water BEFORE and AFTER each workout to stay hydrated! This is very important. You will NOT have time to grab some water between exercises.
5. I watched workout three earlier this week because tomorrow is when I start week 3 and I thought "Oh my god!" Worried that I couldn't do it. Now I'm thinking to myself, self, "Stick with it. You never know what you can do until you try." So now I am actually looking forward to my exercise tomorrow. More in a few weeks when I may have other ideas, observations, etc.
I'm coming up on my last cardio tomorrow for weeks 3 and 4. Workouts 3 and 4 were awesome. There's a lot of plank in these two which kills my arms. I'd almost like to give them an extra week to see if I could improve on some of the moves butt I don't want to hit a plateau. There's one move in particular that requires quite a bit of balance (standing on one leg and bending forward with a flat back then standing straight up and doing a dumbbell row) that I just can't seem to balance on enough to keep my form. But hey, maybe it's something I can improve on in future workouts. Some of the exercises in these workouts include side crunches, "squirms," sumo squats with triceps extensions, lunges (backward and forward but not in the same workout), plank with crescent pose, plank ups, and plank with leg lifts. Did I mention there was plank? Good mornings, hot feet, punches, terri (sp?) pulls, etc.
Couple of notes: Order yourself the Jillian Michaels resistance cord from her website (not sure why they don't sell it here on Amazon). It's far superior to the short rubber stretchy one I bought first and has better pull. The handles are ergonomically designed too and you will need it. I tried a particular exercise and my cheap resistance band just wouldn't stretch far enough to let me do the exercise because you have to loop it around your foot and then step into a lunge and press the handles forward. The JM cord is also adjustable. I bought mine for 10 bucks plus about 5 shipping so you won't break the bank there.
As for my body, well... Still improving! Vastly better than one month ago. I'm kind of disappointed that my thighs seem to be the same darned circumference they've been all along. The difference is that the fat is being replaced by muscle which is fine but it's kind of hard to "drop a pants size" when your waist is getting smaller but your thighs are still like tree-trunks. Grrr! I wish there was as much focus on the lower body as on the upper body in these videos. BUT my waist IS looking much nicer! I don't have a beach body yet though :( still a little belly there, but hello feet without sucking in my gut! LOL!
I am sticking with this. Watched workout 5 today to see what's coming up and it looks harder but funner! Guess what? There's more PLANK!
More when I'm done sweating through weeks 5 and 6.
158 of 191 people found the following review helpful
- Published on Amazon.com
I have about 40 lbs total to lose. I have always participated in sports, but I've also always been overweight. I attempted to start this program multiple times, then finally made it a priority and low and behold it's working. The weight did not just fall off immediately, and I didn't really lose a lot the first two weeks, but I kept at it because I could feel myself getting stronger with each workout. I'm so glad that I did!
I just completed the first workout in month 2, and couldn't finish all the moves. Jillian just keeps amping it up. I'm so excited to continue growing and improving with the program, and to be able to do all the moves perfectly in workouts 5 and 6 at the end of 2 weeks.
Something that I was curious about when I bought this program was how I would feel having to repeat workouts multiple times before moving on, particularly in repeating the cardio workout for the whole month. I have to say that it hasn't been bad at all. In fact, I've enjoyed getting to know the routines as it's been a great way to see how I'm improving. There is truly nothing that's been more satisfying than not being able to complete a move at the beginning of the two week segment, then being able to do it perfectly at the end of the two weeks.
The workout length has also been perfect for me. Half an hour is so doable for me mentally. Even when I've had incredibly long days at work (and my job is very stressful and tiring, part of why I started out 40 lbs overweight), half an hour isn't over the top mentally. I also have to say that I am able to deal with the stress at work so much better right now, and I think it's due to the discipline I've been teaching myself through eating better and doing these workouts.
Update post weeks 5/6:
Just completed the final cardio for week 6. Hands shaking slightly while writing this. As of this morning, I'm down a total of 14 pounds since starting this. Honestly, I'm somewhat shocked by the number, as it feels like a lot. I was legitimately concerned during weeks 1 and 2 that I wasn't losing much, and now I am just that much more grateful that I've been sticking with this. This week I had some extra nervous energy from work, and did a second kickboxing cardio workout after the noon hour cardio with this. I was definitely more tired the next day, but what really amazed me was how much easier the kickboxing cardio workout was than I'd expected. Jillian really is getting me into great shape with truly manageable workouts of 30 minutes.
The other thing that I took comfort in while attempting to get through my final round of burpees in the cardio today was just what incredible shape Jillian's other participants are in these workouts. At first I thought they were all just their for their ridiculous bodies, but now that I've been hanging out with them for 6 weeks, they are becoming more and more inspiring to me, and they are truly in phenomenal shape, which Jillian displays by "picking on" each of them and having them show their best efforts at exercises. It's inspiring for me to see how much more room there is for me to progress and keep improving.
I still have 24 pounds that I plan to lose before being down with this getting in shape & weight loss journey, and I know I'm going to be incredibly proud when I get through week 12 of this, and I'll be that much closer to my goal weight. I will also have shown myself that I have all the discipline I need to finish this and stick with a 12 week program.
Update post weeks 7-8
I had to travel for work for over a week during this time, so these weeks took a bit longer to get through. I did Jillian Michaels Banish fat boost metabolism as well as an Amy Dixon DVD while I was traveling as both don't require weights. I'm now down 18 pounds as of this morning. I have a pear shaped body, and I'm almost more excited that I've lost 4.5 inches from my hips since starting 2 months ago. I'm incredibly happy with the results and how my body is getting stronger, but I also know that my weight loss is having a lot to do with what I'm eating. I did workout 9 yesterday and am about to start workout 10. I really like workout 9. For me, it had a lot more quad work than workout 7, but was actually slightly more doable than 7, as the arm work didn't feel quite as impossible (two rounds of pushups in workout 7. ugh.). I still love that with each workout Jillian introduces moves that I've seen before but never thought I'd be capable of. Then suddenly I'm doing them, and it's so incredibly satisfying. Workout 9 includes jumping jacks pushups? Who me? Ya, that's right. I did jumping jacks pushups yesterday. Sweet!
Update post weeks 9-10
I am now down a total of 5.5 inches from my hips. Really impressive in my opinion down a total of 23.6 pounds as well. I'm really happy. I get excited to workout now, and it feels like so many other things in my life are better, and there's more balance because I've made working out an important part of my life again. I feel like an athlete again, which I haven't felt like since college. Thanks Jillian for developing this series. Excited for weeks 11 and 12.
Update end of program:
As of the end, I lost a total of about 27 pounds doing this workout. I have actually been done with it for about a month now, and was struggling with what to do to keep the momentum going. I'm now running a lot more and doing the two Amy Dixon Breathless Body workout DVDs. I LOVE THEM. I also love going back and doing these Jillian workouts again. For some reason, I keep gravitating back to workouts 7 and 8. I think those were my favorite two. I have not only kept the weight off, but I've now lost a total of almost 32 lbs. I have 8 pound left to lose, and I have never felt so good in my own body. I visited my parents for the first time since losing weight last week, and my mom let out an expletive (which she NEVER does) she was so surprised by how different I looked. I truly crave exercising now, and I really credit this program for jump starting everything. I also am not at all depressed any more. I was never clinicly depressed, but I definitely used to feel down. I feel happy almost all the time now, even when dealing with large amounts of stress at work. 30 minute Jillian workouts are AWESOME.
I'm trying to get into some Cathe DVDs next to add variety. So far, they feel much more dancey and require A LOT more equipment than Jillian. These 12 workouts really did tone my whole body. Now that I'm running more and not doing as much with weights, I think I've lost some upper body muscle and ab definition (my least favorite things to work on previously...) although I'm in great cardio shape. The one minute sections in workouts 7 and 8 are quite easy for me now. The pushups, not so much.
I've recommended this program to a couple of people who felt the price was too high for them. I think the price is high, and it's a bit gimmicky that there are separate DVDs for each workout (you could easily combine each month's onto 1 DVD, but then, it wouldn't feel like you were getting as much would it). However, I would gladly pay the $100 again to do this program. So many times I have just said to myself, "if only I could lose this extra weight, I would feel so much better about myself." This program actually made that a reality and I don't think I could ever put a price on that.
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
- Published on Amazon.com
I'm going to do this in stages as I finish each part. I am a medic and have a lot of strength in some areas, not as much in others. I did the 30 day shred while I was in Afghanistan and it was too cold to walk to the gym. I didn't get shredded, but I got a lot stronger. I wanted to do something a little more lengthy. Happened to catch this on a lightning deal and bought it.
You don't need a lot of equipment. Weights, a resistance band (I bought one from Wal Mart), and a yoga mat. The work outs are 30 min each, give or take 5 min, so even I've managed to do them every day as I should with a 14 hour shift in there. I always watch a work out before I do it so I can get a feel for the moves and go through some of them if I don't understand them. This way I'm not wasting time when I do the actual work out.
I'll be honest... I find the meal plan to be a bit of a joke. Maybe if you're really not active 1200 calories a day is enough. If a meal plan leaves me hungry then I'm not going to stick with it. I usually try to stick around 1600 a day and have made an effort to eat better, cleaner (Not always easy in my line of work), but 1200 a day is going to make me want to gnaw my arm off. There's also no consideration for people who don't work a typical job with access to a microwave or who doesn't work 9-5. I've had to adjust accordingly.
Weeks 1 & 2: I started this on a different day so I actually did this one for about 2 and a half weeks. I was sore for the first week LOL. So much for those muscles I thought I had! The cardio DVD is tough. I didn't manage to do everything the first time, but I'm almost there. The suicides suck. A lot. Workout 1 and 2 are good workouts. Nothing that isn't doable and there isn't a lot of plyo involved. You're still doing stuff in each group and a few groups that do combine upper and lower body. I was sweating buckets at the end of each work out. I see more definition in my arms and shoulders now.
Weeks 3 & 4: Cardio stays the same, but don't let that fool you. I'm still panting like a crazy person when I'm done with it and getting thru the suicides is still tough. These two weeks have a lot more weights involved, which isn't a bad thing. There are times she tells you to move to lower weights as well (Some of them I could do with heavier weights so I did). can't remember what she called them, but the tricep dips in crab position really hurt my wrists and shoulders for some reason, so I swapped to doing them on the edge of the couch, which gave me a lot more range of motion. She probably sees it as a cheat, but oh well. Workout 3 had a lot of yoga moves, which I wouldn't mind, but she whips through them very fast and I feel like you can't get good form trying to keep up. The crescents for instance, I was barely up and her people were moving to the next one. This I didn't like at all. Also, I can't do tree pose sitting still.... holding and moving weights, yeah... not so much for me. (Seriously, I've ALWAYS had issues with this pose, don't know why) Week 4 is also challenging, tho I feel like I need to up my weights for biceps (I've been using 8). You add some jump stuff here as well, but it's not hardcore. Most of it is pretty gentle.
Phase 1 done. I'm stronger for sure. LOL and maybe a little scared of phase 2
Weeks 5 & 6: Ok, here is where those who aren't into the jump stuff are going to have a problem. We're also into super sets, which means you don't do a muscle then give it a rest. You sort of hammer it until you can't move it anymore. I have less problem with the bicep work out than the tricep. Seriously, I really feel like I need another week with this one. Especially the tri workout. I can't finish it without stopping at some point along the way. And I still really struggle with the crab position. Both of these are HARD workouts. Unfortunately I spend a lot of the one leg moves trying to keep my balance, so I feel like I missing out on parts of the work out... And it doesn't seem to be getting better. Perhaps balance just ins't my thing? And the second cardio workout? I'm not sure I even want to talk about it yet.
I'm now half way through this. I can honestly say my upper body is more lean and toned. I see a lot more definition in my arms and shoulders especially. Jillian would probably really annoy me if she were here in person, but overall I don't mind her here. There are a few times where I find her obnoxious. And I'm pretty much over her reference to skinny jeans. It seems to put emphasis on doing a workout to look good instead of to change your health. Or that everyone should aspire to wear skinny jeans, even if it's not your thing. I don't like how it comes across as the end all be all.
This is a workout. If you're not sweating when you're done, I suspect you're doing it wrong. If you can raise your arms above your head easily, you are either a bigger person than me or you're doing it wrong. During one workout she makes a comment about are you a pansy... honestly, I really want to tell her yes, yes I am.
It's kind of nice to note that her own people are struggling with these workouts too. You can see many of her own people lagging, or not getting their legs up as high, etc. It sort of makes me feel a little better.
Weeks 7 & 8: These two are tough. And you're really getting into a lot of jump moves. I felt the Warrior 3 pose on workout 8 was a bit advanced. I can't do it, let alone with weights. She seems to jump into the balance stuff but that is obviously not my strong point. Over all I really enjoy workout 8 (With the exception of the warrior 3 pose). There are only a few things I drop to the 3 lb weights for, even when she tells you to. I usually use 5 when those things hit, but the jump rope with weights I drop to 3 on. Watch your form. You're doing a lot of moving and it's easy to twist something if you aren't paying attention. I'm not happy with the cool down in workout 8... only two excerises and the bicep stretches feel useless. I'd rather have a glutes stretch, especially after that last set.
Cardio 2: Ow. Just ow. You're down to 30 second intervals on your cardio sets but they are pretty intense. 3 sets of these. I can get thru the first set... second set I always seem to be lagging.... and third set honestly feels a little shorter and I can get thru most of it ok. I hate crossjacks. Just saying. The thing that really bothers me with this one is that she doesn't do everything in the same order all three times and it sort of throws me off a bit. You're also not really getting much in the way of recovery time here. Not any more. Honestly I need a few seconds to get the feeling back in my legs LOL. This really hammers your quads in a big way and at some point I just can't feel them anymore.
My work out was interrupted by an event, so I've stuck with 7 & 8 for an extra week and a half or so. I didn't get to work out for a week and jumping into something new seemed like a bad idea. So I'll finish out the week with 7 & 8 then move on. I was surprised I wasn't nearly as sore as I expected when I went back to it. Yes, a bit sore, but nothing like when you start. YAY for progress. Also, I was involved in some photoshoots during my workout hiatus and the photographer (Who knows me) commented on the muscle tone I have now.
Weeks 9 & 10: Crap. Holy crap. These are just HARD. We're pretty much done with lifting weights really. You add a lot of light weight to jumps, but the basic lifting is pretty much gone. Which sucks because honestly, I enjoyed it. If you can't do the plyo you're going to be in trouble. There's also a lot of balance work here, and honestly, I don't feel like you were prepped enough for it by any means. I spend more time fighting the moves on some of them than doing them because I just can't hold my balance like that. My biggest complaint tho, is that the cool downs sort of suck. You are hard core on your inner thighs for 9, but she never does a single inner thigh stretch. And even after this long that silly bicep stretch doesn't do anything for me. You are WORKING on these I feel like the cool down doesn't even come close to touching what you've done.
Cardio 3: This one is a beast. Even her own people are lagging seriously on this one. She changes the order between sets and even drops a few of the moves a few times, skipping them all together. This annoys me to no end. I assume this is bad editing on someone's part and I'm not sure how it got missed. This is insanely fast and hard on the knees. I flat out dislike this one for a lot of reasons, and yes, part of it is because it is insanely hard. She admits it's a hard work out and watching her own people lag is a little comforting. As with some of the others, there comes a point where your muscles are so over taxed that you literally just can't work them because you have no strength left. I'm only half way thru doing this one, so I'll likely have more to stay about it later.
I'm hitting the last 2 weeks in this and the one thing I can say is that I truly wish there was a disc with it that shows ALL the moves. In these later work outs some of the moves aren't explained well and you try to figure them out but then you're wasting the work out. The balance moves are especially hard for me and I would have liked a chance to do them a bit before throwing them into a workout. I watch all the workouts before hand, but I still feel this would be incredibly useful. I'm not a workout guru, and the extra time it takes to learn a move is likely to give me a better work out.
Weeks 11 & 12: More tough workouts. Perhaps a little less balance focus than other things... still a lot of jumping. I actually kind of think the set before these were harder, but these aren't easy either. I did go back to the heavier weights with these two weeks and didn't have any real issues with that. She does toss in some of the old school, basic muscle building curls and such. Which was nice LOL. It's fast paced, but she does use many things from Cardio 3, but varies them without explaining that. So if you're used to doing them the way Cardio 3 does them, you'll be off.
Overall this is a tough, good workout. I built a lot of muscle with this and I am definitely stronger. I do not feel the diet is in any way sustainable, which to me presents a bit of a problem. I understand the kick starter part of it the first week, but after that adjustments should have been made IMO. If that diet isn't sustainable, then why are they pushing it? Hence me not doing it.
Now that I've finished, I'm trying to decide if I want to start over and start doing the harder variants of the moves, or if I want to go to something new. This is a tough three months, but it's a good workout. IMO you should see results as long as you aren't entirely crazy with your diet. I did find portions of it obnoxious and I'd probably want to punch Jillian in the face if she were here in person. I do think this set was worth the money and plan on keeping it around.