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4.6 out of 5 stars
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4.6 out of 5 stars
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on December 19, 2009
After working out with a variety of Biggest Loser DVDs for several months, I finally picked up one of Jillian Michael's solo projects, the 30 Day Shred. This DVD includes 3 levels of difficulty, meant to be worked up to over 30 days (presumably spending 10 days in a row on each level). Once you've hit the 30 days, or whatever schedule you work out for yourself, I recommend rotating all 3 levels for a nice variety.

To summarize, this DVD is fantastic. Jillian employs a unique 3-2-1 circuit training system - three minutes of strength training (divided into two 30 second / 1:30 intervals), two minutes of cardio (divided into two 30 second repeating intervals), and one minute of abs, which you do three times with different moves in each circuit. Jillian has two 'helpers' working out behind her - one who generally does an easier, modified version of a move, the other who does a more hardcore move to work your way up to.

Level 1 is a nice light workout that will still get your heart going, but without killing you - a great intro to the system and as Jillian promises, it does get easier with time, helping you to build up confidence in your body. Level 2 is by far the hardest of the 3 levels, with a large focus on the arms / shoulders / plank pose. Level 3, although challenging in its own way with many plyometric / jump training moves, also has some really creative moves I haven't seen in the other workout DVDs I've used, which actually makes it more fun than level 2.

Jillian herself is, as always, a great motivational force. She doesn't talk too much, her instruction is very intuitive to make sure you don't strain your muscles or perform something incorrectly, and she seems to know exactly when you want to quit. Her 'bodies' in the back are a little less inspiring, angling more towards the robotic end of things, but they thankfully show good form, and also a little humanity when they get as tuckered out as you do (PS - keep an eye on Natalie, she cops out on a few moves, which Jillian occasionally calls her out on...you know it's a tough workout!).

And most importantly - the results. This was a game changing DVD for me. I believe all of the working out I'd done leading up to this DVD was the perfect foundation for finally getting results. I've noticed my muscles firming up, my body slimming down, and generally just felt healthier and stronger, and very happy with how I've progress in general. I don't do all the tough moves all the time (or in a few cases, ever), and I should probably do Level 2 a bit more often, but I still feel great and happy I tried this DVD out, I definitely want to check out other Jillian Michaels products.

A couple of caveats for everyone out there - I feel like this DVD would be extremely challenging for someone who hasn't been working out on a relatively consistent basis. Having done five months of Biggest Loser DVDs, I was used to the types of moves explored here - lots of squats, lunges, planks, etc. Don't be afraid to slow down the pacing of this DVD - work your way up in longer than 30 days, I myself spent two weeks on each level instead of just 10 days. Additionally I think if you're on the older side, this DVD would be quite challenging, as I tried to get my mom to do a Level 3 jumping lunges move and she nearly fell over. Finally, I wouldn't recommend anything heavier than a 3 lb or 5 lb weight, unless you're going for a bodybuilder look. As it is, I mostly stick to the 3 lb as I find many of Jillian's moves are pretty explosive and can strain your muscles with a 5 lb weight. That's not to say it's not worth challenging yourself - but be aware that this DVD is not for the ambivalent towards getting fit!
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on January 26, 2009
I have been using this dvd for close to 3 weeks and I definitely see and feel results. There are three workouts, with level one being the easiest. Each workout incorporates modifications for beginners and those wanting more of a challenge.
I am trying to get back into shape and I can tell you that after doing the level 1 almost every day, I have seen results. I am almost ready to go to the next level, but think I will try the more challenging modifications before moving on.
Jillian is motivating and not annoying at all. I am turning down the sound now because I know everything she says in level 1. The 20 minute workout time is perfect for a mom like me trying to fit in some exercise before running off to work and getting the little one ready.
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on November 21, 2008
I just started this DVD and it's awesome! The workouts are only 20 minutes each, but they are killer. There are 3 levels and so far level 1 has me in pain. This DVD is good for anyone who wants a workout that will target strength, cardio, and abs all in one in a short amount of time. You will need hand weights for these exercises and a matt if your working out on hard surfaces.
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on April 10, 2016
I can't tell you how many times I have given this DVD as a gift to someone, especially when they ask what I'm doing to lose weight. This workout is simply perfect! Each level is only 27 minutes including the warm up and cool down(I do extra stretching at the end). I have to modify a few of the level 3 moves due to a bad knee but I can honestly say that I've not only been losing inches but pounds as well. I am currently working out with an advanced work out buddy and she can't believe the intense workout that we are getting. We are finishing Level 3 right now and are looking to make a workout rotation of many of Jillian's DVDs. I remember thinking that Level 2 was the most intense level (I believe another reviewer thought so too) but I have no idea what I was thinking! Level 3 is definitely the hardest but it is still very doable. Even if you're a beginner pick up this DVD and do it as consistently as possible. I've been doing it 6 days a week with one day of rest. You will definitely get results by doing this DVD.
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on February 8, 2009
This is certainly not an easy workout. I strongly suggest you start at level 1 (I'm pretty fit, and started at level 2...sweated buckets, and gritted my teeth through the last 10 minutes). If you're short on workout time, but want a thorough, challenging workout, this is THE workout for you.
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on February 10, 2009
I absolutely LOVE this workout! I did it 30 days in a row, but I had to work up to it. The first time I did it, I could hardly walk for a week! I think I did it 3 times before I was ready to do it everyday. After doing it a few times, I was no longer in agony the next day. I am a big fan of Billy Blanks' Tae Bo tapes, and I was shocked to discover that I work up a much better sweat in 25 minutes with the 30 Day Shred than I did in 60 minutes of Tae Bo! The moves are really easy to follow too (no choreography). I've lost 7 pounds in the 5 weeks since I've been doing this workout, and I definitely see a big difference in muscle tone. (I started out about 45 pounds overweight.) Let me warn you - you will absolutely want to kill Jillian while you are working out!! She is impossibly tough! This workout is not for absolute beginners, but if you are able to do jumping jacks, you can definitely handle Level 1. If you have problems with your knees, don't bother with this DVD. I'm struggling with Levels 2 and 3, but I enjoy the challenge. I love that you can choose what Level you want to do on any given day (once you work up to it) because it gives you a much better variety than doing the same workout every day. I think what surprised me the most about this workout is how FAST it goes by!! I recommended this workout to a friend of mine, and she is loving it too. For me, this workout was well worth the money!!
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on December 30, 2009
I really love how this DVD is 3 shorter workouts (total about 27 minutes each with the warm up and cool downs). Plus it's 3 circuits so the time goes by pretty quickly. The workouts are hard and in no time you start seeing the changes in your stamina and strength. It's not a "fun" DVD but it gets the job done in a short time and there's no time wasted. Plus anyone really can do it. There is no need to already be strong, flexible or fit. I am fit, and I still feel it kicking my butt!!! But anyone can do a jumping jack :)
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on May 30, 2016
If you're looking to lose weight, look no more... You've got it right here. Crazy intense workout with amazing results. Just 20 minutes makes pushing it into your schedule so much easier. There is no second left to rest but it's all worth it. Go Jillian!!!
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on August 24, 2010
There is no doubt that this DVD contains three hardcore workouts (like Jillian says, "results don't come free"), but I just found the workouts SO BORING! In Level 1, you begin by rotating a system of pushups and squat-n-press; it gets very tedious, very quickly. If you're a person like me who's not really into exercise, but wants to be in shape, I recommend other DVD workouts like Turbo Jam, the Crunch series or the SELF series. These are much more engaging and fun. If you're really into fitness and like doing pushups, this DVD is for you.
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on February 11, 2010
What I loved most about this video is that Jillian is an actual trainer who talks about the workout, and nothing else. Other videos are just not the same. It is intense, allows no rest, but gives results. I found I couldn't do more than 3 days in a row because i got so sore, but it's really worth it. Recommended 100%.
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