WHO CAN DO THIS: Intermediate and advanced exercisers who don't need to enjoy their workout.
THE BREAKDOWN: Three DVDs—Strength, Cardio, Pilates—with 10 five-minute workouts each. The series is designed, according to the package, to help you stay fit through your 40s, 50s, and 60s. Being one of those types of people, I’m interested in workouts targeting our Very Special Needs. And fitness pro Andrea Metcalf is cut and not 20 years old, which is cool. I was rooting for these workouts.
But I hated them so much, I assumed I’d missed the point. Although I don't always watch intro segments, which often are just blah-blah, I watched one of these specifically hoping Metcalf would express a philosophy that would explain why these workouts were better than I thought. But it was just blah-blah, and she lost me entirely when she said each five-minute workouts provides “simple motions that incorporate both upper and lower body and target the midsection” while demonstrating a move combining rows, lateral lifts, and deep curtsies. All at once. Nothing simple about that. Every limb is going in a different direction. With hand weights.
Each five-minute segment tries to pack a full workout into a frenetic pace. I flailed around, missing my nose with my three-pound weights, twisting knees, tripping on my own feet. I’m usually pretty good at picking up workouts quickly but I'm getting to the age where I worry about hurting myself. This program seems like an injury waiting to happen.
And when you think about it (I grumbled to myself as I bumbled and shvitzed), why would anyone want to do a five-minute workout, anyway? If you’ve bothered to suit up and show up, you’re gonna wanna put in more than five minutes. But the workouts are so frenetic, doing more than one five-minute segment isn’t much fun. I suppose you could mix and match from the three DVDs, but that’s a lot of changing DVDs.
FWIW, the Pilates DVD is OK,
With all due respect to good intentions…fail.
THE SWEAT FACTOR: Yeah.
BUT IS IT FUN? No.
WHEN IT'S OVER: My knees hurt.
GEAR AND APPAREL: Light weights, mat, floor. Whatever.
FINAL WORD: Feh.
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