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The 12 Second Sequence: Get Fit in 20 Minutes Twice a Week! Paperback – January 20, 2009

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Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

10 Questions with Jorge Cruise about The 12-Second Sequence™

1. What is the 12-Second Sequence™ and how does it work?
The 12-Second Sequence™ is a breakthrough new method to lose belly fat with resistance training. It uniquely combines two proven resistance techniques--slow cadence lifting and static contraction--to create my trademark method: Controlled Tension™. My team and I spent years developing this method that dramatically reduces the average workout time. In just twenty minutes, you will get the equivalent of a two-hour workout. How is this possible? Well, Controlled Tension™ fatigues your muscle tissue faster than any other program available; when you create muscle fatigue, you are on your way to building new fat-burning lean muscle tissue, which is critical to sculpting and toning your body--and getting rid of that dreaded belly fat! With the 12-Second Sequence™, you will see your waist shrink in two weeks. Plus, if you commit to the entire 8 weeks of the program, you will see your best body ever.

The plan consists of two 20-minute workouts per week. Those 20-minute workouts are made up of three circuits of four exercise moves, for a total of 12 moves per workout day. You'll do 4 reps per move. Each move should take you 90 seconds and each circuit should take you 6 minutes, for a total of 18 minutes. I've thrown in 2 minutes of transition time for you.

2. Why is lean muscle tissue so crucial for weight loss?
Lean muscle tissue is the most metabolically active tissue on your body. Because it needs energy just to operate, it burns calories constantly--even when you’re doing nothing at all. This means that the more lean muscle tissue you have on your body, the more fat you burn every day. Plus, lean muscle is much more compact than fat so it actually makes you appear slimmer, and it's what gives you great tone and definition.

3. Can you really burn up to 20 percent more calories every day? How does that work?
Yes. Using the average woman as an example, I will show you how it works. A woman who’s 5'4", 160 pounds, naturally burns about 1,800 calories a day. When you strength train twice a week with the 12-Second Sequence™, you burn 200 calories during each workout, already burning an extra 400 calories. Plus, when you strength train you create after-burn, which is the energy your body uses to return itself to a "resting state." This energy burns an additional 400 calories each week.

Now, for the most powerful calorie-burning element—lean muscle tissue. When you add five pounds of lean muscle tissue to your body with the incredibly effective 12-Second Sequence™ workouts , you increase your calories burned each day by 250--that’s 1,750 more calories burned each week! Here's a quick overview of how it all breaks down:

400 calories (from the workout)
400 calories (from the after-burn)
+ 1,750 calories (from lean muscle tissue)
2,550 additional calories burned each week! = 20%

See all 10 questions and answers from Jorge Cruise

--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.


“Here’s the big secret laid bare . . . you can’t lose weight without building muscle, so follow Jorge’s recommendations.”
Dr. Mehmet Oz, author of YOU: On a Diet

“Regular physical activity is crucial for weight control and vital for health. But fitting it into our hectic daily routines can seem nearly impossible—until you get some guidance from Jorge Cruise! Jorge is the master of maximum benefit from exercise in minimal time. Read Jorge’s latest insights and empowering strategies, and you will discover there is time in your life for exercise and its powerful benefits—no heavy lifting required!”
David L. Katz, M.D., M.P.H., F.A.C.P.M., F.A.C.P., associate professor adjunct; public health director, Prevention Research Center Yale University School of Medicine; medical consultant, ABC News

“Jorge is the embodiment of his own program. This book tells you how to achieve the same results—really great!”
Suzanne Somers, #1 New York Times bestselling author of most recently Ageless: The Naked Truth About Bioidentical Hormones

“Jorge Cruise’s new program will revolutionize how you work out and stay fit. His plan is amazing.”
Cathleen Black, president, Hearst Magazines, publisher of Cosmopolitan, Good Housekeeping, Harper’s Bazaar, O, the Oprah Magazine, among others

“Who knew 12 seconds could make such a difference? Jorge Cruise defines how to maximize results in a short amount of time—which is invaluable in this fast-paced world. With traditional strength training, there are reps. With Jorge’s program, there are REPS ! With this technique, you can shape your body faster than you ever thought possible.”
—Kathy Smith, fitness expert and author of Feed Muscle, Shrink Fat

“I agree with Jorge wholeheartedly. Along with a sound eating plan, strength training is the key to overall health improvement. And, as the saying goes, ‘Slow and steady wins the race!’ ”
Frederick Hahn, celebrity trainer, author, and owner of Serious Strength NYC

“Jorge Cruise has done it again! Long at the forefront of teaching people how to live healthy lives, his new book shows you how to exercise effectively, safely, and efficiently. A great guide to a healthier you!”
John Robbins, author of Healthy at 100 and the internationally acclaimed bestseller Diet for a New America

“I think the 12-Second Sequence™ workout for 20 minutes twice a week in conjunction with the dietary suggestions is the best and most productive way for busy people to get into shape and stay that way. There is no way people could become bored and lose interest in 20 minutes. It reminds me of the commercial quote, ‘So easy a caveman could do it.’ ”
Dale Eustace, Ph.D., professor of cereal technology, Kansas State University

“In this chaotic world where dozens of new diet and exercise books seem to pop up every year, it’s all too easy to get confused and to give up hope. This book clearly details the ‘basics’ that should form the foundation to any healthy lifestyle. Read the first few pages and you’ll soon discover that you can have the body you’ve always dreamed of in half the usual time. The 12-Second Sequence™ should be devoured by anyone seeking
a common-sense approach to living a great life in a great body.”
Christopher Guerriero, founder of MaximizeYourMetabolism.com and host of The Energy Factor health television show

“The 12-Second Sequence™ works. You’ll love the results: boosting your metabolism, increasing your stamina, and easily fitting into your jeans again.”
Lucy Beale, author of The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Glycemic Index Weight Loss

“Like me, Jorge Cruise practices what he preaches.”
—Jack La Lanne, godfather of fitness and coauthor of Fiscal Fitness: 8 Steps to Wealth & Health from America’s Leaders of Fitness and Finance

“Jorge knows what he’s talking about. Follow his book—lose the weight.”
—Chris Robinson, fitness expert and author of The Core Connection

“Jorge continues to inspire and make losing weight fun and part of your life forever.”
—Mariel Hemingway, author of Healthy Living from the Inside Out

From the Hardcover edition.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Harmony; Reprint edition (January 20, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0307383326
  • ISBN-13: 978-0307383327
  • Product Dimensions: 7.4 x 0.8 x 9.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.3 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (47 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #540,530 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

JORGE CRUISE used to be 40 pounds overweight. Today, he is internationally recognized as a leading celebrity fitness trainer and is the #1 best selling author of over 20 books in 16 languages, with more than six million books in print. He is a contributor to The Steve Harvey Show, The Dr. Oz Show, Extra TV, Good Morning America, The Today Show, The Rachael Ray Show, Huffington Post, First for Women Magazine, and the Costco Connection. He hosts The Jorge Cruise Show with over 12 million listeners.

Jorge received his Bachelor's degree from the University of California, San Diego (UCSD); fitness credentials from the Cooper Institute for Aerobics Research, the American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM), and the American Council on Exercise (ACE).

Join JorgeCruise.comfor FREE to get meal planners, recipes, coaching, and more.

Customer Reviews

There is really nothing new here with this book.
S. Stutzman
The workout itself isn't anything new or special: it's a combination of the Super-slow protocol with an isometric contraction at the peak of the repetition.
Amazon Customer
I just picked up this great book yesterday and finished the first workout.
T. Kennedy

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

407 of 430 people found the following review helpful By Athena on January 2, 2008
Format: Hardcover
I came to know about this book through a newsletter I subscribe to, in which it was still in pre-release. I went to the [...] website to learn more about the book, and I was excited for it to release. It seems you could do simple, isometric-type of exercises that you move 10 seconds slowly one way, hold for 2 seconds, and then move back 10 seconds the other way (for example, a type of sit-up). I also liked his calorie calculation that you can burn quite a bit (he used a 2,500 calorie per week example you can read in the book description above). Let me also say that my main interest in this book was only needing to work out twice per week, and of what I thought to be exercises at home.

However, when the book released on New Years Eve, I visited my local Barnes and Noble store to examine the book first. Firstoff, let me say that he gives dietary recommendations (around 40% protein, 40% carbs, 20% fat on your plate) and also mentions a pre-breakfast walk in the morning with this program. The total program is eight weeks, and the first four weeks you are required to use a swiss ball for many exercises, which I don't see the real necessity. Then, the second four weeks you are required to go to the gym (now this is where I was mostly disappointed--I could've lived with just needing the swiss ball, but I can't go the gym with a new baby). He also says you can buy a cable machine (which costs about $3000--ya right!), or repeat the first four weeks with the swiss ball (but he doesn't really encourage or recommend this, so I felt like I wouldn't get what I expected from the program anymore, and put the book back on the shelf and left the store. The more I read about Jorge Cruise, the more I think he is too gimmicky.
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117 of 120 people found the following review helpful By Ronald L. Courtois on January 28, 2008
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
After reading some of the posted reviews I felt I should comment on my actual results using this program. First, I was one of the volunteer Beta testers of this program in May of last year. I was not paid for my participation and have no economic interest in this book or any of Jorge Cruise's other operations. I did this for myself. It is also interesting to note that only 2 or 3 people in my group dropped out over the course of 8 weeks. I think this is due to seeing results as early as 2 to 3 weeks in.

I had tried several diets/programs and none had any lasting effect or eliminated the 'belly fat' I had accumulated. I was not overly fat, but I carried at least 10lbs of fat on my waist and belly. My cholesterol was high, I was borderline hypertensive and had no stamina. I'll also tell you that this program is not easy. It will take work and dedication. It takes time to plan your diet and I was continually sore for the almost the entire 8 weeks. I worked my [...] off. You get out of the program what you put in. My results after 8 weeks on the diet and exercise were a loss of 13 lbs, 5 inches from my waist (34 before and 29 now) a 100 point drop in my total cholesterol (now around 170 without drugs). My blood pressure is now normal and have more stamina than I have had in years. If you want graphic results my pictures are on the 12 second sequence site.

Two suggestions. The morning 20 minute cardio before breakfast is key. In my opinion it is one of the best ways to eliminate belly fat. The 3hr diet kept my metabolism steady and I avoided peaks and valleys. Plan your meals in advance and it helps to get buy in from family. The exercises provide cardio workout if you keep a fast pace and complete the routine within 35 to 40 minutes.
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30 of 33 people found the following review helpful By M. Benson on January 13, 2008
Format: Hardcover
After skimming through the book, reading the description above, and watching the video preview here, I'm wondering where Jorge got his numbers.
He states, "When you add five pounds of lean muscle tissue to your body with the incredibly effective 12-Second Sequence(tm) workouts , you increase your calories burned each day by 250--that's 1,750 more calories burned each week!"

Contrast that to a quote by an actual exercise physiologist in a New York Times article by Gina Kolata:
"Jack Wilmore, an exercise physiologist at Texas A & M University, calculated that the average amount of muscle that men gained after a serious 12-week weight-lifting program was 2 kilograms, or 4.4 pounds. That added muscle would increase the metabolic rate by only 24 calories a day
The muscle you gain is minuscule compared with the total amount of skeletal muscle in the body. And muscle has a very low metabolic rate when it's at rest. (You can't flex your biceps all the time.)"

Notice that Jorge said adding 5 pounds of muscle would burn 250 calories a day vs. an exercise physiologist stating that 4.4 pounds of muscle would burn only 24 more calories a day. I would assume that most of the weight loss shown in Jorge's success stories comes from the restricted calories. This makes me suspicious of Jorge's other claims.
His "12 second sequence" is actually a 22 second sequence. He doesn't seem to be very good with numbers.

The "Superman" and crunch moves have also been sited as harmful to the lumbar spine, according to spine specialist Stuart McGill, PhD. Google his name and you'll find lots of free information on proper abdominal and back exercises.

Also, as others have noted, this "slow lifting" approach has been around for a while.
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