Video Fitness

Oxygen In, Calories Out

Charlene Prickett

I got this video because I work really long hours and need to have some short, intense, low-impact workouts to fit my schedule so I can continue exercising five or six times weekly. This tape fits the bill exactly. Oxygen In, Calories Out is an hour-long video consisting of two separate workouts, both of them different and surprisingly challenging. Filmed in a downtown Calgary landmark, a theater now converted into a dance club, the video has a somewhat different feel from other Charlene tapes. Long-time workout pals Lori and Renee are there, but Charlene spices up her routine by including kickboxing and balance moves while still keeping impact low in a series of athletic moves (squats, scoop squats, jump squats, high knees, and backward lunges). The workouts are broken down as follows: four-minute warm-up, 19 minutes of cardio, and seven minutes of cool down and stretch. And even though Charlene and her pals are working out on a polished dance floor, viewers in cramped homes will find that both workouts don't require much space at all, and working out on carpeting won't make any difference in how you do this tape. If you want higher impact options, Charlene points them out. As far as intensity goes, this video is definitely intermediate/advanced. I found the workouts fun. The choreographically-challenged should be able to master the moves right away. For those who like to dance, this won't be your cup of tea, unless you're looking for a change. Grade: A.

Instructor comments: She's incredibly fit and a real inspiration for those over 40. She talks up a storm, though. Some viewers might find that aspect of her annoying.

Paula Weber
13 Nov 99

This is a fun tape! I am biased though, since I'm a Charlene fan and enjoy her simple style of workouts that are intense and get results. This tape is set in the "Palace" night club in downtown Calgary and consists of 2 1/2 hour aerobic workouts. They are mainly low impact with a few impact moves that are more jumping to get your feet in a certain move instead of just jogging or jumping up and down (which really bothers my head/neck for some reason). Charlene gets your heartrate up with "scoop squats", "big knees", "jump squats" and this neat back lunge move, to name a few. These workouts seem quite a bit more intense than her other 1/2 hour workouts (which aren't easy either, by the way) and with a few new moves and some new music they were a breath of fresh air.

Now, if you're a fan of CIA dance workout videos that have you using 600 square feet of space to do the workout and your brow is furrowed trying to concentrate and you're having to rewind just to catch that new move they did, you may find this tape a bit less exciting than you're used to. Also, if you're the kind of person that enjoys the "tape it from the top" style you may be dissapointed with this tape too. I don't happen to enjoy building a huge routine for 15 minutes and then beating it to death for 30 more so I enjoy Charlene's style which is to constanly change moves, add on a bit and then move on to something else. She also uses little floor space which works for me in my small space especially since I'm competing with my toddlers' toys for space and having to constantly look out for him to make sure I'm not going to step on him! Also, with one ear listening for the baby, I just don't have the focus to concentrate on a complex routine. So, if your kid situation is similar to mine or you don't nessesarily enjoy long dance routines or you like frequent move changes this tape will fit the bill!

Now, there's always a down-side to everything right? My little beefs are that the music Charlene uses is this strange techno funk thing and it stays on the same song through the whole 2 workouts. Also, They wear the same outfits in both workouts...I like change so would have preferred that they change the music more and wear different outfits but at the time that I'm huffing and puffing it's not really a big deal.

Tammy Porter
Jan 10/01

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