Saturday, September 25, 2010

Get your cross-training where you can

My husband and I have a treadmill in our house, and we absolutely love it. It's in the guest bedroom right now and since we only have guests maybe once every two years or so, we have visions of turning that room into a home gym complete with a weight machine and a stationary bike so that we can alternate the treadmill with other cross-training activities. But seeing as how we're not made of money, all that will have to wait for just a little while.

I've been using my Wii Fit sporadically for cross-training -- the yoga in particular was really helpful when I injured my knee a while back -- but it's kind of a pain to set it up and find the balance board and all of the little feet that keep it level (we do have a place for all of this stuff, but let's just say that with two teenagers in the house, there's no guarantee that it'll all be where it's supposed to be on any given day!) plus it seems to take forever to actually get to the exercises and there's a lot of downtime when switching from one to another.

So I decided to get a workout video, and the one I was hearing the most about was the Jillian Michaels 30 Day Shred. It arrived in the mail the other day and holy cow, this thing is HARD! I had thought I was in pretty good shape, but I wasn't even able to keep up with Level One of this thing, and I was following the modified (for out-of-shape types) exercises! It's not that it's hard to follow at all -- the instructions are very clear and it's a high-quality video -- it's just that it is really a super-intense workout. The actual workout only lasts 20 minutes but you are constantly in motion and keeping your heart rate up for that entire time. My abs in particular were really sore for two days after my first workout!

I had my doubts as to whether I could truly cross-train while using an exercise video, but those doubts have evaporated. I am really looking forward to using this thing on the days I don't run. There are three levels to the workout but right now my short-term goal is just to get through Level One without needing a break!

I will post a full review of this product once I've worked my way up to Level Three, assuming that ever happens.

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