Michelle Dozois and Tracy York
Seven Day Solution promises results in seven days as long as you do the aerobics every day and the weight section every other day and follow a diet. I didn't purchase this tape for a seven day solution. I like the instructors and these kinds of "solutions" only work if you aren't already exercising. The tapes starts out with a 30 minute aerobic section and then moves into a 30 minute weight section.
The aerobics section starts out energetically. Tracy and Michelle take turns teaching combinations, None of these are all that complicated and all are well cued. I actually thought it was going to be more intense while I previewed it, but its a solid intermediate workout. The instructors teach a combo, then you never see it again. The choreography is not dancy and even has a short kickboxing combo. All the combos work into what I consider a little intensity burst where you put all the moves together and give it your all. There are about 6 combos.
The toning section wasn't anything unusual or intense. The leg work doesn't include weights, but I would certainly use weights during this section. There is also an arm workout section that do use weights. The toning includes lunges, squats, bicep curls and standard exercise with medium reps. The abs section is traditional curl work. The toning wasn't bad, but wasn't anything special either.
I'd give it a B, nice routine but the only thing that makes it stand out from Kathy Smith or Denise Austin intermediate routines is the instructors.
Two friendly and likeable instructors. The cueing in this tape is better than in the Breakthru tapes.
"Short but surpisingly intense"
I just got this tape - Playcentric.com was having a sale: $3 off all VHS tapes so it cost $6.51 plus $4 S&H, what a deal. It arrived yesterday, took about a week.
I did the tape this AM and I was pleasantly surprised that the cardio section was actually fairly intense - although it's only (sigh) 22min long (plus 5min warm-up, 4min cooldown).
I would say the cardio section is a high-intermediate level with impact and style very comparable to Mindy's Action Packed hi-lo except not quite as high-impact. Definitely a bouncy tape that would be hard to modify down to low-impact. But I liked it a lot! Some of the kicks were definitely "kickboxing-inspired".
The music was rock instrumental with some vocals and I wished it had been more like the Top 40 hits or at least a teensy bit louder.
Tracy & Michelle have great rapport and the routines are pretty moderate choreography yet intense, good for a day where you're short on time or don't want to drag out all your equipment.
The set is a wide-open New York-style warehouse with brick walls, stylized parquet tiles and an entire wall of bright well-lit windows.
The sculpting section is done with one set of dumbbells and using a chair and mat. Although the routines (2 or more sets each exercise) were simple they varied the tempo & reps for variety and the pace definitely lends itself well to "heavying up".
The lower body is short, Collage says 8min but I clocked it in over 10min - squats, lunges, plie squats and I was very pleased to see deadlifts.
The upper body was classic dumbbell rows (two-arms, then one-arm single rows), long-lever side raises, dumbbell curls, concentration curls, tricep dips, different variety push-ups and a few exercises I'm forgetting about. It clocked in at 11min.
The ab work was 8min long and I liked it a lot - straightforward ab work with some fairly intense lower body lifts and oblique crunches (which left me groaning & gasping for air). It also included some side-lying plank work and lying & "on all fours" back hyperextension work. Definitely "Pilates-inspired".
The weight workout was very beginner-intermed, the cardio was high-intermed. Very refreshing workout. I'd say overall the entire tape would be a good refresher course or boost for a beginner returning to exercise who doesn't want to invest in a great deal of equipment.
Overall I enjoyed it a lot more than I thought I would! It's definitely a sleeper - the intensity of the cardio caught me by surprise. As an advanced exerciser, I won't use the weight training section regularly but I definitely plan to tack the cardio workout onto a strenght training day or add the ab workout to the end of my workouts.
Worth $11 if you ask me!
This video contains two workouts that may be done together or separately. They each have their own warm up and cool down.
The cardio section is 30 minutes long. It consists of basic and moderate choreography in 7 minute blocks (this includes the warm up). Collage rates this as higher impact, but I would call it mixed. I enjoy all the blocks of choreography, but if you need complex stuff, this is not for you. If, like me, you have a short attention span, I think you will like this. Not too much TIFTTing, and when you are done with a block, that is the last you see of those moves. Tracy and Michelle use lunges, chasses, skips, ham curls, and kicks for variety. I was surprised by the intensity. I really did keep my heart rate up fairly high during the entire cardio section. I guess I expected it to be less intense because of the title of the video. It sounds like one that is trying to appeal to beginners. I would call this solidly intermediate to high intermediate.
The strength section is about a half an hour long also. Every muscle group is hit . There are lunges, squats, plie squats and seated leg extensions for your lower body. They only performed some of the reps with weights, but I used 10 pund dumbbells for all the standing leg work. There are not a huge amount of reps, but Tracy and Michelle make good use of tempo changes in order to fatigue the legs. The upper body section starts with a sets for the back and biceps--I think about two sets for each. Using twelve pounds I was challenged by thier bicep work which was similar to Cahte's "crazy eights".They then went on to some shoulder work, some pushups and a set for triceps. I could have used a few more reps for some of the exercises-- not the pushups, though! I found them challenging. Again, they used tempo variations and sometimes emphasized the eccentric phase of the movement.
The abs were a little dispappointing. I felt like there was too much variety and not enough reps to really make them challenging. They finished up with some work for the back and a short stretch.
There is nothing special about this tape that it is going to whip you into shape in seven days, but it is a good, solid cardio and strength tape.
Tracy and Michelle have good rapport.