Video Fitness

Burn Fat & Get Fit

Type: Interval training, using step, weights and strength training
Length: Approx. 60 minutes, but the warm-up, aerobic workout, and cool-down totals just under 40 minutes.

Out of the 15 exercise videos I currently own, "Burn Fat & Get Fit" is consistently the best. It is absolutely the least boring, best tape workout I have ever done, and I go back to it over and over without getting tired of it. I began using this tape when I was fairly out of shape and about 20 lbs less than I am now. Despite the fact that I am now working out at an Intermediate+ level, Powter's tape has virtually grown with me. It is so adaptable that everyone from a beginner to an intermediate (and maybe even advanced) exerciser will get something out of it.

The hook here is the variety of the interval training. After what she terms an "active warm-up" (and it is), Powter leads the viewer through a workout consisting of 3 minutes "cardio" on the step to 1 minute of weights/strength work (either lifting hand weights or doing squat-type exercises using an optional chair). The workout continues to alternate between the cardio and strengthening segments, so that you won't even feel as if you've done a workout at the end. But don't get me wrong--this is a major fat-burning workout. The key is that the variety makes it less boring than other workouts.

Cuing is excellent--part of Powter's allure is that she gives very down-to-earth, basic direction that is easily understandable for beginners, yet is not condescending to more advanced exercisers. The style is straightforward--nothing fancy, not too dancy, and no tricky moves. The tape of course features Powter's dynamic personality, which is very motivational. She is joined by two other exercisers--a man and a woman--both of whom are "real people"--in other words, they don't look like models and they don't exercise like hard-core pros.

The setting for the video is the interior of Powter's home. She reasons that since this is where she works out, what better place for the viewer to join in the workout. The music is extremely subtle--nothing loud or hard. Based on what I've read in "Stop the Insanity", Powter's bestseller, she is very concerned about the safety of each move, and it shows on the tape. Every move is explained fully and there is nothing here that seems the least bit risky.

Following the warmup, aerobic workout, and cool-down (approx. 40 min), the tape includes other sections, ie, a stretching/relaxation portion. I am truthfully not all that familiar with the last portion of the tape, as I usually focus on the basic workout due to time constraints.

To sum up, "Burn Fat & Get Fit" is a great workout with tons of variety.

Nicole Moshiri

This is my favorite Susan Powter video, because I like the interval training. The moves are pretty much the same as those in Lean, Strong & Healthy, but after a 10-minute warm up, you work in intervals, 3 minutes cardio (stepping) and 1 minute weight training. This is an excellent tape for beginners, because she encourages modification and it's a great introduction to weight training for those (like me) who never considered it before. The choreography is simple, and it would most likely be boring and not challenging enough for advanced exercisers. But this is THE tape I would recommend to someone just starting out, especially for those whose fitness level is low and who appreciate simple choreography.

Lisa Speckhardt

It's a good workout for a Beginner. It really produces results, but I find the movements too simplistic and repetitive to hold my interest. It might be more interesting if I could use a step, but I'm prohibited from that by my Orthopedist (due to a knee injury). I like the circuit training aspect. If it weren't for the changes in focus, I would never do this routine. However, I feel that I've had a complete workout when I'm done. So, I just "bite the bullet" so-to-speak, and do the darn thing. I'm always glad that I did.

Instructor comments: She's a good motivator. I could do without the cracks about dance movements, though. Her cueing is a bit off at times, but it's not disruptive. She's big on correct form, and I applaud her for that!

Sandi Tinker

The video Burn Fat and Get Fit: Fun, Easy. Why don't you try it yourself?

Instructor comments: I like Susan. I exercise at a gym, which name I will not mention, and I hate the instructors starring at their fit, beautiful bodies and asking to smile, puf. Susan is different. Go Girl

Tete Leones

Easy to follow and you don't grow tired of it. Real fittness for serious people on a lifestyle change towards better health.

Instructor comments: She is dynamite and very inspirational!

Tracy Blum
March 1999

A friend of mine got me hooked on Susan Powter's first video, Lean, Strong and Healthy. I loved it, and I didn't think I would like Susan. Then I bought Burn Fat, Get Fit. I loved this too. The active warm up is great. My arms hurt just from doing the step, touch with the overhead arms. I didn't think I would like the interval training, but Susan is a good motivator which kept me going. The only criticism I have is the camera work. What was the camera person thinking? I felt I was watching NYPD Blue with the jumpy camera.

Instructor comments:



I just did this video for the first time tonight, and I can't praise it enough. Susan is so basic and so down-to-earth and doesn't make you feel like a "loser" if you are unable to do something. I've lost 104 lbs. with her "Lean Strong & Healthy" video and have about another 50-60 to go and I owe it all to her and her mouth and guts and verve. This video was easy to follow (you don't have to be a dance major to do it) and she makes it OK to not be able to keep up, but encourages you to do your best--even if that's just stepping up and down on the box. I LOVED THIS TAPE.

Instructor comments: How does one describe Susan Powter? The reason I enjoy her so much is she is REAL. There is NO phoniness about Susan. And I like a person that isn't afraid to be themselves. They don't care if they fit in the "norm" (after all, what is THAT?) She's got chutzpah and I admire her.

Debra Goodman

A friend of mine got me hooked on Susan Powter's first video, Lean, Strong and Healthy. I loved it, and I didn't think I would like Susan. Then I bought Burn Fat, Get Fit. I loved this too. The active warm up is great. My arms hurt just from doing the step, touch with the overhead arms. I didn't think I would like the interval training, but Susan is a good motivator which kept me going. The only criticism I have is the camera work. What was the camera person thinking? I felt I was watching NYPD Blue with the jumpy camera.



I always feel that this a complete workout. It includes cardio (step) intervals with weight training, followed by ab work and stretches. I started out as a sedentary beginner and I appreciate that the video can "grow with you" as Susan shows modifiers to increase or decrease intensity. The moves are fairly basic and athletic and Susan's cuing can be repetitious ("that's 4 and 3...") but it's mitigated by the fact that the cardio and weight training intervals are fairly short. As a result, I find the time flies by when I do this video.

The set is better than her other videos (her living room) and I find the music is so-so. As other reviewers have commented, the cast members aren't superfit models which is nice to see. The only thing I dislike is the hurky-jerky camera work at times (extreme jittery closeup)...was the cameraman on drugs?!

I'd recommend all beginners view this video (see if you local library has one) if you don't understand the principle of modification. It's something you can take with you to other videos and very helpful.

Instructor comments: Susan is very talkative and an excellent motivator (especially for beginners). She has many form pointers (and thinking about the movement) which is important. Best of all, she talks (a lot!) about modifiers and demonstrates how to modify for your fitness level which is important.

Anne MacL


The video was a great challenge for me. I'm not a beginner but not yet advanced and I did complete the entire 60 minutes. It for me was a good workout for me and it wasn't boring. I don't dread putting it in the VCR! As a matter of fact it't the one that I reach for out of the 40 tapes that I own! I will be purchasing more of her tapes!!!

Instructor comments: She's great! I enjoy her a lot. She was very motivating for me. She is very upbeat! I'd read one of her books and enjoyed it a lot. I was curious about her as a video instructor and I wasn't sorry at all that I purchased the tape! I have a collectin of about 40 tapes. Some of them I like, som I don't. This one will always be one of my favorites!!!!

Yvette Williams

This video is quite pleasant. The set is nice, although the music could be more interesting. This video really strives to make interval circuit training accesible to all levels. Susan is a big proponent of modification to your ability level, and she offers suggestions throughout. Unfortunately, the camera focuses on her face when some of the modifications are shown, so you have to figure out what she's talking about instead of seeing it. Some people don't like Susan's attitude and style. I do find her a bit much at times, but she's put together a reasonable video here. The intervals are well structured and she cues quite well and her form is quite good. I also like the way she stops working out to interact with, motivate and coach her companions. It has a nice hands-on feel. If you like Susan, and want a basic video that incorporates stepping with weight training, this is good choice. More advanced exercisers, and people who don't like Susan won't get much from this video. It is a good circuit interval workout for beginners.

Instructor comments: Susan is very motivating and encouraging. She's all about modification and working within your fitness level. She can be in-your-face at times, but I find her motivating, and she seems more restrained in this video. She uses good form, and cues quite. Ideal instructor for beginners- motivation, quality instruction.


I know instructors who do beginner video are usually not popular on VF. After doing Burn Fat and Get Fit, I think Susan Powter is underrated. This video is ideal for beginners, right up there with Jane Fonda's personal Trainer Series. It has absolutely no fancy choreography or difficult moves. It alternates 3 minutes of cardio on a step with 1 minute of strength training. Granted, Susan Powter will never be my favorite instructor, but she is motivating, cues well and shows modifications for each exercise. I find that I get more out of her videos that Leslie Sansone's for instance. I am hoping she'll be my ticket out of Slugville. It's definitely a keeper for me !

Maryan, Paris


Video Fitness copyright © 1996 - 2009 Wendy Niemi Kremer    All rights reserved