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VINE VOICEon July 6, 2009
I'm a physical therapist, so I am extremely critical of exercise videos, and poor form/instruction makes me crazy. I've also never seen the show Biggest Loser, so I didn't know any of the participants here and I didn't really know what to expect. But I do like working out at home sometimes and this video got great reviews, so I gave it a try. I echo the great reviews: This is an excellent workout, both challenging and well put-together, and the instruction is top-notch.

The Cast: This workout is led by Bob, who I take to be a trainer from the show. Bob manages what very few do: he is likable without being syrupy, and motivating without being obnoxious. His form is perfection that makes my PT heart sing, and his instruction and cueing are perfect as far as safe and effective form. He makes me want to watch the show. Working out with Bob is Ali, who I think is the season 5 winner and who has form as close to perfect as a non-professional gets. When Bob's talking, watch Ali for form. There are also Bill (S4 winner?) and Bernie (at home winner - whatever that is) - they both have good form and Bernie is charming. Michelle is in 2 of the 3 segments - she has very good form herself, second only to Ali. The last 2, who thankfully are not in every segment, are Vicky and Heba. Heba is often the demonstrator of the modified form of an exercise and I think this is a HUGE mistake. (It's why I give 4 stars instead of 5.) Her form is dreadful, in almost every exercise and position. Please don't watch her! Having modifications is crucial, but they should NOT be given to the least fit person to demonstrate - they should be given to a very fit person who can demonstrate safe and perfect form to the beginners who are likely following the modifications. Bad call on that casting.

The Format: A very nice and easily customizable menu. There is a 5 minute warm-up, a 20 minute Level One, a 15 minute Level Two, a 10 minute Level Three, and a 5 minute cool down. You are meant to do Level One for 2 weeks, then add Level Two, and then add Level Three 2 weeks after that. It's nice plan though a beginning exerciser would probably be best served staying on each level for 4 weeks before increasing. Of course you can do whatever you feel like doing / have time to do each day. My pre-teen son, who wants to start using weights, does just the Level Three - a few times a week. (He has no need for anything else as he is an active athlete.)

The Exercises & Equipment: Level One is no walk in the park - and it may be out of reach for the very unfit. It's a challenging mix of low impact cardio (one high impact spot - modification for low impact given) and work with hand weights. I would advise someone new to exercise to do this level for at least 2-3 weeks without any weights, before attempting to add weights. Level Two is very hard - it uses hand weights (and a medicine ball though this is optional) with a mix of squats, lunges, pushups, tough ab work, and exhausting plyometrics. It's a GREAT workout! Modifications are always given but still I would call this workout intermediate - advanced. Level Three is pure muscle work using hand weights or a resistance band. It's well put together, hitting every major upper body muscle group. In my opinion, though this is not stated anywhere, Level Three is the only place where it would be appropriate to use a heavy hand weight, as you are doing specific and slow sets on each muscle group. The first 2 levels move along pretty fast, and there is some repetitive work, so my professional advice (to women) would be that nothing heavier than 5lb dumbbells (most people should keep it at 3 lbs, beginners could use 1 or 2 lb weights) should be used, or you could potentially aggravate your shoulders and/or develop a tendonitis.

Bottom Line: Excellent workout, both in terms of effectiveness and of structure, with great cuing and a likable coach. Downgraded from 5 to 4 stars because of the poor form shown in the modifications.
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I had this DVD before but it got too scratched up to continue playing & skipping so I got a new one.

I am an intermediate exerciser. I spin for 30 mins few times a week & cross train w/ Stephanie Oram DVD.
This DVD is great because I am doing upper & lower body at the same time in 20 mins & you can feel your glutes & thigh muscles burning. I am a female late 30s. I use 10 lb weights for this workout. I will follow my old protocol & do Boot Camp I for 2 weeks before I move on to Boot Camp II.
This DVD has a 5 min warm up, boot camp I, boot camp 2, boot camp 3, & a 5 minute cool down so this workout can be used for a while before you get bored.
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I started my weight loss routine 4 months ago. I've lost nearly 60 lbs now and this DVD has helped immensely. I use kettlebells as a side exercise, but this DVD honestly has everything you need in it. It was hard, let me get that out first. When someone is overweight and hasn't exercised, if at all, in forever, it's a shock. Yes, you're going to be sore, yes, you will feel like giving up. Most hosts of these type of DVD's annoy me. Bob Harper doesn't. He is straight forward and it helps to see people who have struggled with their weight and to see them now. If you find this DVD too difficult, work your way up. During the exercises you cannot do, keep moving, whatever moving means to you (dancing like an idiot, marching...), it's better than stopping. You will need dumbells, milk jugs, anything of weight that you can find around the house, if you don't have dumbells readily available. I used 3-5 lb dumbells to start.The Format is great and it has a user friendly menu. 5 minute warm-up, a 20 minute Level One, a 15 minute Level Two, a 10 minute Level Three, and a 5 minute cool down. You're meant to do Level One for 2 weeks, then add Level Two, and then add Level Three 2 weeks after that. If you're new to exercisering, it would probably be better staying on each level for 4 weeks before increasing. Push yourself, but not to the point of injury. We all know when we've had enough. I go just above that, then stop.
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on March 5, 2011
I've exercised just about all my life, including having joined several "Boot Camp" type groups, and found this to be one of the best cardio-fat burning DVDs out there. I'm still on Level 1 because I just started a little over a week ago, but I don't dread sliding this into my DVD player in the morning before going to work and actually am looking forward to progressing to Level 2 in another week. It's recommended that you stay with the first level for two weeks before moving on to the next level.

This is a fast-paced workout beginning with a 5 minute warm-up to get your heart pumping and your muscles warm. After warming up, level 1 (20 minutes) ups the cardio-fat burning a notch with some of the exercises requiring working out with weights (don't worry, start out with 2.5 pound dumbells or 5 or 10 pound weights, whichever feels comfortable while still being a little challenging). You'll exercise along with people of varying sizes and abilities, so you won't be intimidated by svelte gals and muscular guys...they're normal looking people here. Besides, you'll be exercising at home. Who's gonna see?

In all, there are 5 parts to the Boot Camp Workout: 1. WARM-UP (5 minutes), 2. LEVEL 1 (20 minutes), 3. LEVEL 2 (15 minutes), 4. LEVEL 3 (10 minutes), and 5. COOL-DOWN (5 minutes). It will probably take you 8 weeks to reach the COOL-DOWN segment. Hey! What would you be doing for 8 weeks when not working out? You certainly wouldn't be burning calories and feeling great. You've got nothing to lose...except fat.
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on April 17, 2018
I love this and rotating it with the biggest loser weight loss yoga! I lost 15 pounds w/ proper diet in about 3 months! I noticed my stomach start to shrink (which is huge after a c-section!). When I sweat I know its working. I like that they have different ways of doing something if one exercise is too hard for beginners. I stopped doing it because I was diagnosed with mono then life happened. I am looking forward to getting back into these videos after my baby is born!
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on July 30, 2017
I've used the workout yoga DVD for YEARS and loved it, but I wanted to add more variety to my routine, so I finally bought it. I haven't made it past the first level, it's intense, with very few pauses for you to catch your breath. As a beginner when it comes to exercising, I find the cool down almost as hard as the workout. It's definitely something I'll be building up to. My one major criticism is that the instructions aren't as good as the yoga DVD. I was expecting more direction, as in, what muscles are supposed to be "feeling the burn" so to speak--more on what the form was supposed to feel and look like. It's a faster pace, and the moves aren't held as long as they are in yoga, so I suppose that's the reason for less directions. I'll stick with it, but it's not as good as the other one.
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on May 26, 2012
I am not a fan of the Biggest Loser but I purchased this DVD because it had good reviews and a great price. This DVD has 3 workouts and a warm up and cool down. You can customize the workouts or follow the plan on the DVD. The plan on the DVD has you doing the first workout for 2 weeks then adding the second workout for 2 weeks followed by adding the 3rd workout for an additional 2 weeks. Doing your workout 4-5 times a week. The first workout is mostly toning, the second workout adds some cardio intervals to the toning and the third workout is mostly toning again. The workouts include lots of squats/lunges and use of dumbbells. The video isn't overly polished. It is more like a video of a trainer working with his clients than your typical workout video. There is one participant that does all the moves correctly, she is in the front for all of the workouts. The rest are just average joes. Overall this is a great addition to my workout routine.
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on August 12, 2013
The good: for beginners the workout is 30 min. long and you can add more as the weeks go by. Bob works out your whole body and I just feel great afterwards. The people working out with him are regular people from the Biggest Loser show, so some of them are still a bit chunky and do different levels of working out. I like that, you don't see girls and guys that have never been fat in their lives like in other dvds.

The bad: Its a bit boring and the music kind of sucks, but I don't mind this since I've lost 3 Lbs in the first 5 days combining this simple workout with their recipes.
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on January 14, 2014
To clarify, I do not have weight problems and am currently not in a stage of trying to lose weight. I regularly exercise, often using Jillian Michael's workout videos.

With that being said, I find this video to just be okay. It only is difficult at some points, such as the extended cardio sections, but for the most part I feel that it is too easy for a seasoned exerciser. I think it is likely a great video to start weight loss and the moves are certainly able to be done by most individuals. I also really appreciate that "real people" are used in the video. However, I never feel tired after doing this video or feel any muscle ache the next day.

I typically only use this video when I am not feeling up to doing a strenuous workout, but will still like to get extra movement into my day.
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on February 3, 2016
I have many Bob Harper DVD's. I just love them. Unlike other work out DVD's where everyone is in perfect shape, never lose balance, miscount or even sweat-Bob's DVDs show people actually following along, sweating and smiling. He is very positive and I enjoy that he offers modifications if necessary. I have already recommended him to other people and they love him too.
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