Video Fitness

Fitness Becomes You

Margaret Richard

First of all, there have been some other reviews written about this workout that refer to it as easy and suitable for an older person or extreme beginner. I have to say that I completely disagree with those comments. I found the exercises to be very tough and in some cases I couldn't finish the reps. I have been workout out with Cathe and the Firm for awhile so I consider my fitness level to be about intermediate. These workouts would be suitable for beginners up to high intermediates. I don't know if I'd recommend them for advanced exercisers unless you're specifically looking for something less intense than usual.

Anyway, I really enjoy these workouts a lot. At 20 minutes, it's easy to add them on later in the day or work them into a cardio-focused rotation. I adore the outdoor settings, the flamenco style music, and Margaret's low key demeanor. The production quality is excellent and the DVD functionality is a big improvement over her first attempt. Out of six segments, there are four outdoor and two indoor. One strange thing is that in the two indoor segments she has a background exerciser with her, but in the outdoor segments she is alone. The breakdown is as follows:

Volume 1
Workout A - outdoor
Quads (slow squats; she adjusts her feet a lot in this segment, it’s quite distracting)
Hamstrings (using a chair)
Calves/Glutes (bent over raises w. chair)

Workout B - indoor
Abs (on a chair – tough!)
Inner Thighs (squeezing a ball, tougher than it looks)
Outer Thighs (standing raise, with squats, with ballet sweep)

Workout C - outdoor
Pectorals (push-ups)
Triceps (lying French press)
Biceps (seated curls)
Deltoids (raises in various positions)

Volume 2
Workout A - outdoor
Biceps (hammer curls, side curls)
Triceps (dips)
Deltoids (rotator cuff, side raises)
Pectorals (flys)

Workout B - indoor
Abs (crunches w. leg variations)
Outer Thigh (floor – lifts & shoots; she’s really uneven with the reps here)
Inner thigh (scissors)

Workout C – outdoor
Calves – weighted lifts
Quads – seated raises
Hamstrings – kneeling curls
Glutes – bridge w. feet on dumbbells

Most of the exercises are typical Margaret - simple exercises with lots of interesting variations. I also think that the abs in this workout are more difficult than she normally does.

While no substitute for more intense strength training, I think these workouts would be a great addition for many video exercisers. I can think of many cases where it would be useful to have a lower key yet effective weight workout. If, for example, you wanted to add an extra workout session in the morning or later in the day, this would be a perfect choice. No need to dread getting out of bed for this one! You don't need to drag out a lot of equipment (usually either leg weights or dumbbells and a chair or mat).

Other possible uses for these workouts are as add-ons for a little extra targeted work or fitting something in to a tight schedule. I used them a lot over the summer when I was doing mainly outdoor cardio and wanted to keep up my strength.

Great job again from Margaret.

Instructor comments: I love Margaret! She is so enearing in this video, I just love her. She makes cute little comments referring to you as her friend and things like that. Did I say that I love her?

Megan
fitness@meganjack.com
Sept. 24, 2004



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