Tuesday, May 8, 2012

30 DAY SHRED: DAY 1/30

WORKOUT EXPERIMENT - Another 30 Day Challenge is upon us!  After witnessing for myself the success of the 30 Day Yoga Challenge (which has been repeated now for an eighth consecutive month following the original challenge period) I have decided to jump on the hype and try the STILL bestselling DVD workout from Jillian Michaels called 30 Day Shred.  This workout is designed to combine strength, cardio, and abs through her "3-2-1" system to burn calories, drop weight, and keep the weight off.  The DVD cover boasts that you can "lose up to 20 pounds in 30 days!" so, considering that I have a killer dress to squeeze into for my friends' wedding next month, I figured that now is as good a time as any to try out this little experiment on myself.  All that's required is the DVD, some floor space, a mat, and two weights (I chose 4lb weights)... alongside 20-30 minutes a day for 30 days to dedicate to bettering your body, your health, and ultimately your life.  There is no better gift to your body than exercise.

Now, let's chat about DAY 1...

Knowing that I wanted to do SOMETHING to better fit into that dress for the wedding, I knew that some form of workout was going to be in order... accompanied by some portion control and a higher soup intake than normal to curb my cravings.  I had been eying up the 30 Day Shred for quite some time now, but never wanted to shell out the cash to be bothered with yet another workout DVD.  I watched plenty of people buy it with all sorts of body types and after a bit of research from some top workout reviewers, I decided that it was worth the $15 retail price.  Lucky for me, I found it on sale.  Well that boosted my motivation exponentially... and several hours later I was laying out my mat on the floor, prepping my weights, and hitting PLAY.

  • Height: 5'4
  • Weight: 134lbs
  • Thighs: 21 inches (L) | 22 inches (R)
  • Hips: 38 1/2 inches
  • Waist: 28 inches
  • Bust: 36 inches
  • Biceps: 12 inches (L/R)

I am going to be honest with you.  I heard it was going to be difficult, but figured that I could handle it based on the people I'd seen purchase it in the past.  The workout itself is fairly simple on paper and resembles something you may have done in an elementary school gym class, but put together with the weights and constant motion for the duration of the workout, it really sneaks up on you quickly.  It's the Hippie Juice version of a workout (if you catch my drift).  Now, the cardio is just fine in Level 1 (some jumping jacks, simulated jump roping, punching, and running in place) and the abs portion was excellent and actually the most relaxing portion of the whole ordeal (I've been training at yoga) but right about the second round of simultaneous arm raises and lunges I was pretty sure that I was going to cry.  My shoulders were like the cranky sleeper you woke up from a great dream and tried to protest the 8lbs of extra effort they were being asked to give to lift them for several minutes at a clip... and I'm pretty sure starting the whole workout with two reps of pushups didn't help.  Thank heaven Jillian reminds you that she's seen tons of obese people do this workout and knows that if they can do it then you can, too.  The workout overall offers intervals of relief as well as instant gratification after each segment.  It is totally do-able if you don't mind working up a sweat and pushing yourself past the point where you think you've had enough.  It actually reminded me of track practice in High School... particularly when we'd run through the halls, down three flights of stairs, down the hall in the basement and back up the three flights.  If you've got the drive to build a better you, then you can find the drive to try this workout.  There are two more levels of intensity and considering how my arms felt today, I will be continuing on with Level 1 until my muscles stop complaining while I try this workout.  More updates later!

If you want to join in on the 30 Day Shred Challenge, then grab a copy at your local retailer or online (Barnes & Noble is selling it for $10.50 or less!) and start keeping a journal of your progress!  If you're blogging about it, leave a comment with the link here!  Let's keep each other motivated!

Oh, and I highly recommend eating a protein bar within about 20 minutes following the workout.  Luna Protein Bars (cookie dough!) are my favorite! Try one!

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