Time Saver Workouts: Breakthrough Upper Body And Core

Keli Roberts
Year Released: 2007

Categories: Upper Body Strength

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In this video from her "Time Saver Workouts" series, instructor Keli Roberts presents a fast-moving workout focused on upper body and core work. Keli and her two background exercisers are in brightly lit, colorful studio, and they use light dumbbells plus small medicine balls throughout the workout.

The workout is structured into five mini-workouts, or rounds, each of which consist of an upper body exercise with weights, an upper body exercise using the medicine ball, and finally, a core exercise (usually incorporating the ball). Keli begins with a quick-paced, 4-minute warm-up that consists of moves such as shoulder rolls, squats, reaches, knees, and a jump in and out of plank. The exercises in each round are listed on the back of the DVD case as follows (note that every round contains some type of push-up and/or plank move, so those with wrist issues may have problems):

Workout 1
Bilateral bent over row - Push up with ball under hand - Med ball hand to foot pass core stabilization

Workout 2
Unilateral row sequences - Push up with med ball roll hand to hand - Med ball under feet plank/hip extension balance

Workout 3
Clean and press - Push up with hands on med ball - C V-sit med ball rotations with touch down

Workout 4
Bicep curl w1/leg balance - Lateral raise & external rotation - Back extension with med ball in hands overhead

Workout 5
Push up and Row - B Rhomboid lift - Opposite hand and leg raise

Keli concludes the workout with approximately 3 minutes of nice stretching for the upper body, bringing the total time in just shy of 30 minutes. Each round is individually chaptered, so you could easily shorten/customize the workout. The Main Menu of the DVD list's Keli's Introduction (very short overview), Play all Workouts, Select Workout (chapters), and Bonus Features. Bonuses include 3 3-minute clips from other workouts (Breakthrough Lower Body and Core, Flexibility for the Inflexible, and ASAP: Abs, Spine, & Posture), bloopers and behind the scenes, and previews of other workouts by Keli.

Overall, this was a pretty solid workout, and the time just flew by. I was a little put off by the fact that Keli used light weights throughout--her light dumbbells were appropriate for some of the exercises, such as the rhomboid work, but most of the other moves demanded heavier weights. However, there is a lot of flexibility to this workout, and it probably could be customized to meet the needs of most experienced beginner to intermediate exercisers.

Instructor Comments:
Keli is more high energy in this video than I've seen her in some others (such as WHFN Upper Body Burn); she is also chatty with her two background exercisers, who both wear mikes but don't talk much. However, I was quite disappointed to see her use the same dumbbells throughout the workout--she knows better!!!

Beth C (aka toaster)