Monday, September 29, 2008

Stacy McCarthy Yoga Body--Fat Burning Workout

THE WORKOUT: Stacy McCarthy Yoga Body--Fat Burning Workout


WHO CAN DO THIS: This intermediate workout presumes you know your up dogs from your down dogs.

THE BREAKDOWN: Stacy McCarthy her very self was disappointed by my disappointed review of her beginner’s workout and sent me this DVD, thinking I might like it better. She was right.

This straightforward, vanilla yoga workout doesn’t try to get creative—which is a plus. Sometimes, I don’t want to learn anything new. I just want a workout and this one offers a nice balance of strength and flexibility. It’s not strenuous but it’s solid.

In 50 minutes (give or take) McCarthy gives us what we know how to do at a smooth pace, allowing time to breathe and get deep. She starts with a few vinyasas with forward bends, planks, up and down dogs. Then, on to a warrior and triangle series, some balance, and to the floor for pigeon, head-to-knee, twists, inversions and bridge. McCarthy says only as much as we need to know, reminding us what to straighten, what to twist, how to breathe, where to look.

I rarely looked at the TV through the workout because there’s little there I haven’t seen before. And again, that’s a good thing. I could drift along on McCarthy's instructions but focus on my own body instead of hers. And the whole series went down easy, like yogic comfort food.

My only quibble is that the abs section is tacked on after savasana as a special feature. It should have been part of the workout. Who wants to keep going after the relaxation? Or screw with the remote mid-workout?

THE SWEAT FACTOR: I worked up a glow during the warrior and triangles series.

BUT IS IT FUN? It’s very pleasant.

WHEN IT'S OVER: You’ll feel good like yoga can make you feel.

GEAR AND APPAREL: A strap and block if you’re a strap and block kind of person. I used a tape measure ‘cause it was handy.

FINAL WORD: Sometimes I don’t get to my workout until late afternoon. This DVD will be perfect for those days, to work out all my desk-job kinks and get my blood circulating again.

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