The Firm: Cardio Split 1

Nancy Tucker, Allie Del Rio, Jen Carman, Carissa Foster, Dale Brabham
Year Released: 1999

Categories: Circuit Training (cardio and weights)

This workout is a compilation of Firm Super Sculpt and (I believe, a guess here as I don’t have the original cardio workout) Firm Super Cardio. It is led by a variety of Firm master instructors and has a lower body segment (about 25 minutes) and an upper body segment (about 25 minutes). Each has its own warm up and final stretch, and there is an ab section at the beginning of the upper body segment (which comes after the leg section on the VHS version, which is what I have). So if you do the entire thing (which I did, save for the abs) it clocks in at about 50 minutes.

The Super Sculpt sections that were chosen for the lower body portion were the LONG lunge/curtsey dip/cross front lunge set as well as the leg press set with creative pulse/slow leg press intervals, both led by Nancy Tucker, and the leg abduction/adduction lift set along with squats with Carissa Foster. For Carissa’s squats I subbed plie squats and felt like I got a more well rounded leg workout. The cardio sections included a short step segment with Carissa which had lots of glute squeezes, there was also a section with Jen and another section with Dale, if I remember correctly. The cardio was high intensity and had mildly complex choreography. The music was great and kept me going!

The lower body portion included the clean and press and upright row barbell segment with Jen Carmen from Super Sculpt, also a sitting bent row, French press, pushups, and triceps dips with Jen (there were no sections from Dale’s arm sections from Super Sculpt). The cardio for this set was 4-limb which was appropriate for an arm focused split. The sections here were led by Dale and Jen and like the leg split they were high intensity and fairly complex, but the music was so good that it was hard to stop moving, even if you were tired!

Overall I enjoy this workout, although some of the other classic / Anna Benson Firm workouts are better, in my opinion. This workout does have a niche however for being a shorter workout at only 50 minutes and a little less intense (on the strength side, particularly) than other Firm workouts (like there is no long leg press segment and the arms are sporadically worked), which makes it desirable for days when I don’t have the energy or stamina for one of the more challenging Firm workouts. The footage, as noted, comes from other workouts because it is a compilation, but it is very well produced and the clips transition seamlessly. This workout (like all Anna Benson Firms) uses the mansion set and has superior music. Overall grade A-.

Instructor Comments:
I really enjoy all of these Firm master instructors. Jen, Nancy, Dale, and Carissa all cue adequately well in this workout and are an inspiration to look at and work out with. Jen had by far the most sections (and she is a great lead – really a natural) followed by Dale, then Nancy, then Carissa.

Emily B.