Jillian Michaels - 30 Day Shred
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Jillian Michaels is TV's toughest trainer, but she is committed to getting big results. As your own personal trainer, Jillian will guide you through her exclusive 3-2-1 Interval System that combines strength, cardio and abs to blast through calories for a dramatic 30 DAY SHRED. The program includes three complete 20-minute workouts which progress by level of intensity. Start with Level 1 and advance through Level 3 – in no time you'll achieve a lean, shredded body.
When Jillian Michaels says "you can lose up to 20 pounds in 30 days" by following her 20-minute-a-day workout, believe her. There's a reason her 30 Day Shred workout has become a national hit: it works. But anyone who's ever seen Michaels work out with contestants on The Biggest Loser knows it's not necessarily going to be easy. The 30 Day Shred features three 20-minute workouts, each of which features, in rapid succession, short bursts of strength, cardio, and abs, and a cool-down. Sound easy? Think again. Even the beginner-level workout will have users' heart rates up. Michaels allows no resting between each short burst of exercise, which is part of why the results happen so quickly. The transitions between strength, which can feature classic moves like pushups or reps with small weights, and cardio, and then between cardio and abs, are a mere second or two. But that pacing helps guarantee the results that Michaels touts. "This helps you burn more fat and more calories, and gets you toned that much faster," Michaels exhorts as she zips through the exercises. There are a few modified moves for true beginners, but even for them, Michaels doesn't cut much slack; everyone has to do real jumping jacks, and a lot of them. "I have 400-pound people who can do jumping jacks," Michaels says "and if they can do it, you can do it!" The only thing you need to jump into the 30 Day Shred is a set of small hand weights, and, if you have a hard floor, a mat for the floor moves. Otherwise, commit 20 minutes a day for a month, and get that lean, shredded body you've always wanted. --A.T. Hurley
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First some context...I am a 33 year old Asian female who has been a bit overweight for most of my adult life. I didn't weigh myself before I began my exercise journey, but I believe I was close to 160 lbs. and wore XL most of the time. However, I am not the stereotypical petite Asian as I am about 5'6, so the extra pounds on me were not too bad looking, except for the fact that I had a belly! I think this was due mostly to the fact that I never worked out before the 30 Day Shred (except for gym classes in school) and poor diet choices; I do shift work so I often ate again after work around midnight and eating chips and instant noodles weren't helping either. Also, I suffered from low self esteem for a long time, so I was also guilty of "emotional eating", eating when I wasn't really that hungry but just to feel better.
The turning point for me was in 2012 when I went on a date and the guy (whom I met online) told me blatently, "You would be a 10 in the looks dept. if it weren't for your excess weight!". I was crushed beyond belief, and afterwards when I got home, I took a long look at myself in the mirror and told myself that I had enough, and I was sick of being fat as well as constantly being told that I am (you see, I also had a lot of co-workers who were rude enough to often "remind" me that I am fat!). So I considered buying a certain popular home gym but when I found out it was beyond my budget and hard to set up, I gave up and thought about joining my local gym. So I went in for a trial period, but I was lost as to what I should be doing or even how, and I was told that I needed to set up time with staff just to be acquainted with those machines! What's worse, I was hounded by the sales there about membership fees as well as getting a personal trainer, since I was a newbie! I couldn't afford all that and just going to the gym seemed like a hassle to me, so I walked out, and felt bad as I really wanted to get in shape! But as I was leaving the gym, I saw a poster in there with Jillian's pic advertising her "Shred" classes and a lightbulb went inside my head! I could workout at home to a DVD!
So I asked one of my online friends, who is a personal trainer, about working out at home and she told me that it was indeed possible; I just needed a mat and some weights, for exercises like squats, lunges, etc. I told her that my biggest concern was to shed fat, so she recommended that I focus on cardio. I went to Ebay, and just punched in "cardio dvd" in the search box, and I saw Jillian's 30 Day Shred and Denise Austin's Cardio DVD at first glance, and I decided to buy both, just to see which I liked better. I started Denise's first, but she just seemed to annoy me (no offence to Denise fans) and it was a bit dancey for me....so I tried Jillian's next; since it was called the 30 Day Shred, I decided to start at the beginning of the next month, which was July 1, 2013. Prior to starting it, I read a lot of rave reviews online about the Shred, so I decided it was worth a shot!
On the first day of level 1, I remember wanting to die!! So many jumping jacks! I felt out of breath within 10 mins but I didn't want to give up. Jillian's legendary motivation got me through it, although I was incredibly sore afterwards. BTW, I never heard of The Biggest Loser before this workout, so I didn't know anything about Jillian beforehand. I did each level for 10 days each, but I remember also doing level 3 on the 31st as well. I did the Shred for the actual 31 days straight with no rest days, which in hindsight, is sorta crazy now! I just kept plugging away everyday for that month and I was shocked when co-workers started asking me if I was losing weight within 2 weeks, I guess when I was into level 2, as I did sweat the most during level 2 and it was a big step up from level 1! I also remember my clothes feeling a bit looser during the halfway point. I was just amazed that I saw results so soon and without following a strict diet; I just tried to eat sensibly and had a protein shake after my workouts, so perhaps that helped to curb my appetite a bit!
As you can guess, I was pretty pleased with the quick results of this workout at the end of that month, so I quickly ordered a few other Jillian DVDs, Ripped in 30 was my next one. I knew that this was the beginning of the "new" me, and my self confidence grew day by day as well. I didn't weigh myself at all for fear of being demotivated by the number on the scale. Instead, I went by what I saw in the mirror as well as my clothes getting looser as days went by. I couldn't believe that I could achieve such results with a DVD that didn't break the bank! This might sound bizarre, since a lot of people have commented on how Natalie "cheats" in Jillian's DVDs, but I found Anita and Natalie to be quite inspirational during the workouts for some reason. I also didn't think the music was that bad either! Level 2 was my fave and now my go to when I am in a pinch, sometimes level 3, but I now hardly break out a sweat during level 1, which tells you a lot!
In the past year, I have become a big Jillian fan and now also have Yoga Meltdown, BFBM, NMTZ, Hard Body, and Killer Buns and Thighs (which also feature Anita and Natalie!) and I plan on getting her other ones in the near future. I now rotate all of these DVDs throughout the week but have found that since I have gotten stronger and fitter in the year since I started the Shred, I now prefer the longer workouts like BFBM, which has boosted my results since it's pure cardio. But when I am in a time crunch, I will do the Shred! This workout will always have a soft spot in my heart because it was the first workout I ever did! I owe it to Jillian for all these awesome results, since I now wear a S. I love everything about her instructional style! Yes, even her "constant chatter", as it motivates me and I love her quotes as well...."When you get stronger physically, it will transcend into every other facet of your life" comes to mind. Jillian is a godsend for the home exerciser!
I recommend a few things: drink water; never work out on an empty stomach; you don't have to keep up, just keep moving. What you struggle with in week one is easy by week four. It's really fun. And TAKE PICTURES. My pant size did not change; my weight did not change. But if you look at the photos, it's quite clear my body changed. So don't trust numbers! Take pictures! Have fun!
I changed my lifestyle a little as well. Im a life long vegetarian, but decided to eat a vegan diet (no dairy), cut out most processed food and eat whole foods as well as get rid of refined sugar. We all know we cant out run a bad diet.
I did the program for 30 days and never advanced to level 3. I found it too hard, so i did level 2 twenty times instead.
In the morning and evening i would walk a couple of miles with my son.
In just 4 weeks i lost 13 lbs! I know i didnt JUST do the dvd everyday, but in combination with everything, i feel it really helped me tone and build muscle. I have continued on to other JM dvds and have fallen in love with her workouts!
If you're reading this debating if it is for you, the answer is YES! You are worth it.
Pros: It gets your heart rate up.
Cons: LONG intro you can't skip after the first time. When I'm ready to work out, I'm ready.
Not enough ab work for my tastes.
Too much jumping around all shoved together.
Not long enough of a workout - I feel like I need more when I'm done.
Always, ALWAYS gives me calf cramps (and no, I'm not dehydrated) making me pause for a minute while waiting for them to abate - which throws me off my game.
Decision: I'll keep it in my rotation, but there's no way I'm doing it more than once a week - if that often.