Customer Reviews: The Firm: Hard Core Fusion
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on March 4, 2009
Hard Core Fusion is a fun workout that will make you sweat. This workout is full of squats/lunges, so if you have bad knees, I don't recommend it. You need two sets of weights; light and medium. There is a full workout-55 min & an express workout 35 min.

The full workout begins with the warm-up then the segments alternate sculpting(5) & cardio(4). Allie has a good mix of upper body exercises - lat row, curls, french press, medial delt lifts, overhead presses, push ups. Some of these are combined with lower body lunges or squats for total body exercises. The cardio segments are fun and intense. Allie's cardio has more hip movement than I am used to.... there are a couple moves that seemed kind of goofy to me. The last segment for scultpting includes side bends and some good core and tri work. She wraps the workout up with some awesome stretches!

I recommend this workout for beginners through intermediate-advanced. The intensity level gets high, but doesn't remain there for long. There are modifications for beginners, plus on the bonus features section on the DVD, you can choose "Learn the Moves". It is one of the more enjoyable workouts I've done in a while, which is why I give it 5 stars =)
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I'll be the first to admit that most of the Firm fitness dvds trip me up because they tend to shout out the cueing while it's happening and use their own terms for certain workout moves (i.e. "funky biceps" etc.) so that you can sometimes get tripped up unless you do the Firm dvds often and know the moves and move names or unless you don't have a large collection of dvds so that you can learn how to do them via memorizing.

I mention this because if you feel like you should shove aside all the Firm dvds if you, too, might get lost during some of them...think again on this one. It packs a punch and is easy to follow along. I really like it!

CALORIC BURN: I wear a bodybugg (aka GoWear Fit) to monitor my daily caloric expenditure. This also tells me how many calories I burn per minute during a workout and how many I burn total during a workout. I mention this only so that you know what I say is based upon scientific measurement rather than perceived exertion...although I have a large library of dvds that I work out to, this is an excellent one and rated well for caloric burn, strength moves (to build muscle) and some cardio thrown in (to up the caloric expenditure).

TRAINER: She is really good, comfortable in front of the camera, personable, and energetic

SAFETY: Excellent instruction so that you not only do the moves right for optimum results, but that you do the moves safely.

MUSIC: Firm music is always upbeat and flows smoothly to the rhythm of your moves

WEIGHTS: Although Firm dvds always suggest various weights (light, medium, heavy) I always just use my medium decide what you need. I actually have their whole weight set so it's not that I am against buying all the tools they suggest, but always just use 6-7 lb weights during moves and have excellent results. So just know you can.

FOCUS: strength training but gets your heart rate up with some cardio. Great combo.

CUEING: It's actually some of the best cueing Firm offers...However, still, in the cardio portions there are some places those less coordinated may get a little tripped up but I promise you I have two left feet and I love this dvd so don't let this scare you off...I honestly think anyone can do it. I WISH they'd get some cueing comparable to some other dvds I have where there is just no doubt in your mind what the next move is and how to do it but I rarely keep a Firm dvd that I try and I seriously REALLY like this this is no big deal. The cueing is EXCELLENT for the strength training moves and that is what the dvd focuses on mostly anyway.

BACK UP TEAM: The usual Firm team, very cute and motivating.

LEVEL: For any level. Beginners follow one trainer and you just add more weights as you advance so anyone can do it.

You'll see results with this one, regardless of your level and it's a joy to do with an excellent trainer who is very motivating.
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on March 10, 2011
I really like The Firm workouts and I really like Allie -- she's a great instructor. I was really disappointed with this workout and I'm not sure why it got such great reviews. The intensity is just not there -- this is a very low impact workout -- my heart rate never got up there at all. Toward the end I was yawning. I am an advanced exerciser though so I want challenges. Also, the moves are very different. There are a bunch of dance moves which, to be honest, I didn't care for. I want a workout, not a dance class. I want a workout that helps me burn calories and makes my heart stronger. This workout doesn't do that at all. I like my weekend workouts to be a little less intense; so that is what I will use this for. I'm looking forward to doing Calorie Explosion which looks much more intense. Here are a few of my favorite Firm workouts: 500 Calorie Workout, Pump, Jump n' Jab, Cardio Sculpt, Bootcamp Maximum Calorie Burn, Cardio Burn Plus Abs, Get Chisle'd, Fast & Firm Series: Hips, Thighs and Abs, The Transfirmer Supercharged Sculpting, and Ultimate Calorie Blaster (an oldie but a goodie). I recommend these workouts to get you super-fit. They are also safe; no injuries wanted. Overall, I wouldn't get this video unless you're looking for really low impact.
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on August 5, 2013
There is a lot of "dancing" type moves and that is something that does not interest me. I like simple steps and moves. I gave it three stars because I did like the waistline work. These were new moves to me and they really do work.
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VINE VOICEon April 10, 2009
I started out with the original Firm products and then for some reason, the "middle years" were not my favorites with the Transfirmers. I really like the last two that I've purchased.
Alli is a very detailed instructor. The DVD starts with a warm-up and then the workout is a mixture of sculpting with weights, aerobic dance, and toning without weights. The total workout (about 55 minutes) includes upper/lower body combos and also a modifier for the beginning exerciser.
Alli keeps the workout fun and interesting without being too "cheerleady."
The routine is not overly choreographed, but not a bootcamp style either.
I will add this one to my rotation.
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on April 14, 2015
I just love Allie in the Total Body Toner workout. This one is a good workout but it moves way too fast from one exercise to another. By the time my body realizes what it is doing, she is switching positions. Not my idea of an enjoyable workout, but you certainly will feel like you got some good exercise.
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on March 17, 2013
I reviewed most of these before buying via Gaiam (thankfully) so I knew which were worth the money and which were not. The Hard Core Fusion, Get Chisel'd, and Body Crunch are the best in my opinion! These are "fusion" workouts, meaning they are circuits (cycles between resistance with hand weights and cardio without weights). These are not just for the young, I am 52 years old (regular workouts in the last 1.5 years) and I hang with them just fine (although I often do the low option when they get to higher outputs regarding knees, but there is always a "low" option shown!). I have many workout DVD's, and these are some of my go to DVD's on the 1-2 days a week I use weights with my workout. You won't be disappointed. Really.
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on May 19, 2015
I'm not really one to write reviews for things, but I feel as though these workouts deserve recognition. My first experience with The Firm was a few years ago when I decided to buy and try the Transfirmer series of workouts. I wasn't necessarily a beginner at that time, but man..those workouts kicked my butt! I then ordered the previous body sculpting series videos to rotate to avoid boredom. I had great success with them but for whatever reason, I ended up joining a local gym and the The Firm videos/step began collecting dust. Fast forward to present, a husband and almost 2 year old daughter later, I decided I needed something that worked for me at home bc trying to coordinate a toddler to your desired gym schedule isn't necessarily the easiest task (not to mention wasting so much gas). It dawned on me to re-order some of The Firm workouts, new and older DVDs; no more driving 30 minutes to the gym for me! Let me tell you, as someone who is by no means a beginner when it comes to fitness, these workouts are no joke. I got a better workout with these DVDs than I did at any class or time on the treadmill/elliptical. I HIGHLY recommend them to anyone who wants to get in shape and get there FAST. I can tell a change in my body already-they promise results in 10 workouts, but you'll see it before then. Trust me. What's also great is that you can make them as easy or as challenging as you desire-increase or decrease your weight. Either way, you'll get a great workout!
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on July 10, 2012
Just did this video this morning and absolutely loved it! Allie has been around for awhile and is very, very good and cueing (even fast-paced)and mixing up the moves!

There are tons of lunges in the video, so you really have to be careful and watch your form, but you will feel them working. There was also plenty of arm work, and also cardio.

This will defnitely be a good go-to video form me when I want to get everything done in an hour, since the video is just short - 55 minutes.

Allison was the instructor to watch for beginners and I know I also "act" as a beginner when doing a video for the first time. She really modifies the moves well but you can get your heart rate up even following her and without the weights.

I have beend doing the firm consistently for 6 months now and this was a new purchase for me to mix things up a little and I bought it based on the awesome reviews. I certianly don't regret it and can't wait to do it again!

Thanks for all the great reviews, and thank you to Allie and The Firm for this awesome video that will help me stay in shape while in the comfort of my own home!!
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on December 16, 2011
I was using this dvd and a few others last year before i got preggers last year and it is a nice workout. The express workout was the only part I ever used due to constraints on time and it's a nice high energy little diddy :-) I just purchased the 'thin in 30' set, hope the results are as gratifying :-)
oh why did i only use the express? It has pretty much everything needed in about a 25 minute workout so why spend an extra 20 minutes to get the same results? Work harder in the shorter period instead of "slow walkin'
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