First, let me say, even if you're NOT a fan of "The Biggest Loser," please still consider trying these workouts. The level of intensity blew me away this morning. Literally.
Body Rev Cardio Conditioning
This disc has two options: The full, one-hour workout or a condensed 25 minute workout, which is recommended for beginners. I put on my big-girl pants and decided to go for the full hour. I must admit, after watching some of the trailers, I was a little nervous. And looking back, I had every right to be, because this. Was. HARD.
It started out innocently enough, with some dynamic stretching and some basic punching moves. Then, you're instructed to pick up a dumbbell (I grabbed one that's slightly more than 8 lbs) and start moving into deadlifts with rows. Wait, time out! Strength training? I thought this was a cardio workout? Well, be patient. The deadlift rows transition into squats with arm swings, which I later learned is a common move that you come back to as an active recovery between the crazier moves. So what are some of those crazy moves, exactly?
- Squat Jumps (still holding the dumbbell, plus some isometric holds)
- Walk-outs (walking down into a push-up and back)
- Mountain Climbers (instead of taking a break in between sets, he makes you do push-ups AND hold in plank position!)
- Jumping Jacks (both with and without dumbbells)
- Jump Rope (with dumbbells)
- More squats (both at regular and pulsing paces)
- Fast Feet (these eventually lead into jump twists a.k.a. 180-jumps)
- More Walk-outs with an added jump
- Scorpion Push-Ups (this was definitely a "WTF?" moment for me... From a push-up position, you lift one leg up high, shift it toward the opposite side and then do a push-up. Um. Yeah.)
- Squats with Knee Raises
- Speed Skaters
- Tuck Jumps
- Various standing ab moves
That's not even a complete list, people. You just keep going. And going. And going some more. As I mentioned before, you regularly come back to the strength moves introduced in the beginning and those are pretty much the closest things you'll get to a break. Technically, there is a "water break," but it doesn't come until the last third of the workout and lasts for only a few seconds. Then, you're back to the grind. You get to see a sadistic side of Bob in this workout, clearly.
As far as the instruction goes, I think Bob could've done a slightly better job in describing form. Although, this workout pretty much dives in at an intermediate-to-advanced level, so if you're still learning proper form on things like squats, deadlifts and push-ups, you may want to train in those areas a little bit more beforehand. Also, it would've been nice to see Bob doing more of the workout himself, instead of just instructing/watching his 3 assistants (two girls, one guy).
I also found myself kind of irritated with how the assistants were regularly out of sync, even with Bob's cues, but then Bob straight up tells you not to focus on their pace and to just pay attention to your own performance. I agree, but it would still be nice to look up and see some consistency.
One thing I loved was seeing the assistants drip with sweat, run out of breath and sometimes, flat out stop because they're just plain tired. It was refereshing to see the people on the screen struggling to get through an interval just as much as me! I get discouraged sometimes when I'm doing a DVD, sweating my ass off and trying to catch my breath, only to see some chick smiling back at me with her make-up still in place. The people in this DVD are definitely working hard and not always smiling and I personally appreciated that.
Overall, I was seriously impressed by this workout. It definitely lived up to my expectations, as far as delivering a high-intensity challenge. In all honesty, I could not keep up for all 60 minutes and really struggled to put forth 100% effort. But I view that as a positive because now I know I not only got my money's worth, but I also have a new level of fitness to work toward. Not that it needs to be said, but I was absolutely drenched after it was over, as if I had just ran 5 or 6 miles. Ridiculous (in a good way).
And that was just one DVD. I still have 3 others to try, haha. Bob hasn't scared me off quite yet, but he has made me a bit anxious. I read some of the reviews on Amazon for this workout and couldn't believe some people had the nerve to say this DVD was "long and boring." Um, seriously? First of all, it says right on the DVD that the first workout is an hour, so there shouldn't be any surprises there. Secondly, I don't know what workout they were doing, but I didn't have time to get bored! Bob keeps you going non-stop, so my heart rate stayed elevated. I dunno about you, but I don't sweat buckets and drop the F-bomb multiple times when I'm bored.
As you can tell, I'm officially a fan and have no qualms telling you to go out and buy this already! The individual DVDs are trickling into Amazon for pre-order, but the best value (if you want all 4 DVDs like I did) is to order the full package available from Bob's store. Plus, you won't have to wait until October!