I am a huge fan of circuit tapes that alternate cardio and weights and toning in equal ratios and where you can go reasonably heavy on the weights. My favorites have been Reebok Circuit Challenge, Mindy Mylrea Sports Circuit, Firm Cardio Split 1, and Super Conditioning. Training Zone Fusion covers all the major body parts once but seems to emphasize cardio a little more. It?s an ok tape but when I was done, I wished I had done one of my favorites instead.
The Workout has a long (9 minute) warm-up and stretch. Very basic moves - Basic Step, T-Step (not like Cathe's, its a step up, in-out move), knee-ups, repeaters. The most complicated move is 2-repeaters/slide/cha-cha/L-Step that he does once and just when I got the hang of it he started a toning circuit (it does show up again later). The total workout from warm-up to cool-down is about 53 minutes.
There are about 6 circuits that alternate toning and step. Sam and the 2 female background exercisers show different options using tubing, dumbbells, weight plates, and
the barbell. I used tubing the first time and dumbbells/barbell the second time I did the tape.
Toning circuits are:
- Standing chest press, alternating punches (didn?t work well with weights unless you go really light), push-ups using the tubing
- One leg squats (one foot on step, with option to lift leg); One leg squats with side lateral raise (this is repeated on other leg in another circuit)
- Military Press; Overhead Triceps Extensions
- Double Arm Rows
- Reverse Biceps Curl; Reverse Biceps Curl with front raise
The step circuits are fairly basic, mixed, impact, no complicated choreography. He does build some simple combos. There are 3 or 4 anaerobic intervals that last between 30 and
60 seconds. Those intervals are high impact (lunges with high leap off the short end of the step, tuck jumps, squat/leap). The first time I used a 6? step (my norm) and it wasn?t very intense. The second time I used 8? but it didn?t seem to up the ante that much.
After the 6 circuits he takes all the step moves from the top a couple of times (except the tuck jump) for about 8 minutes. Then there is a 6 minute cool down and stretch.
The production was CIA quality. A bright room with a huge rack containing 3 small TVs that were playing other workouts. You could see a huge shadow of the TV rack and something that looked like a fan. Music was Dynamix but nothing I've heard a thousand times.
Overall Assessment: I have mixed feelings about this tape. I do love circuit style tapes and am always happy to find another where you can up the poundage. I liked the fact that you got weights, cardio, and a little bit of intervals in less than 1 hour. I would have liked a tad more choreography complexity or at least slightly more interesting moves. I also would have liked them to have included Abs. If they work every other body part, why not abs? This tape left me longing to do one of my other circuit videos.
The instructor was extremely emotive. He yelled Bam! and Huh! a few times and moaned and grunted during tough sections. He also frowned and contoured his face a lot. I didn?t find it too distracting the FIRST time but his mannerisms became more annoying the second time through.
March 16, 2002