Saturday, December 13, 2008

Give a gift of fitness

By Sophia

I receive lots of fitness DVDs for review. Lots and lots. I do every DVD I review all the way through, unless it’s tragically awful, and I review as many as I can, considering this is a non-paying gig. I also do more DVDs than I review.

Believe me, there are lots of bad DVDs out there and even more mediocre ones. But a few make it into my regular rotation, staying interesting for the long-term and accommodating my fluctuating fitness needs. One fitness DVD is good but a library of them is even better.

Yoga: Element: AM & PM Yoga for Beginners are short and gentle workouts for when I want to tuck something small in the beginning or end of the day.

Do I have to tell you again that Livingroom Yoga is my favorite yoga DVD? The intermediate-level workout is compact, pleasant, effective and just challenging enough for an unhurried afternoon workout. Similarly, Stacey McCarthy’s Yoga Body Fat Burning Workout is a straightforward intermediate practice.

When I’m on the brink of buff, I pull out Crunch Yoga Body Sculpt, which has cute girls and enough challenge to keep it interesting.

Bootyshakers: DanceX Everybody’s Workout Total Body Cardio is dance fun for anyone, with super-simple moves and lots of room to increase or decrease the cardio challenge. This one might make a reappearance post-holidays, when I’m hauling extra junk in the trunk. Dance Workout for Dummies is just that and so gentle that I shouldn’t admit to doing it, ever. But sometimes I do. And then I feel guilty. But it’s fun.

My number one, never-get-sick-of-it, all-time favorite dance DVD (so far) is 10 Minute Solution Fat Blasting Dance Mix. I am so damn fly when I do this and it’s great for remotivating me after I’ve fallen off the program. After a couple of weeks of this, I can tackle the higher energy and trickier choreography of Crunch Cardio Go Go.

Strength: Strength training is my least favorite facet of fitness and the one I am most likely to neglect. If it’s been a while since I hoisted a weight, I start with 10 Minute Solutions Fitness Ball Workouts for a gentle re-introduction. When I’m feeling more confident, I graduate to The Best of Tamilee: Buns, Arms & Abs Workout. This can keep me busy for a long, long time. Tamilee doesn't mess around.

Finally, on my most ambitious days, I tackle Jeanette Jenkins: The Hollywood Trainer, 21 Day Total Body Circuit. It's a helluva challenging workout, but Jenkins is so cheerful, she almost makes it fun.

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