Project: You - Steady StridesKathy Smith
Year Released: 2005
Categories: Walking Aerobics
- Audio Workout
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there are 2 audio power walking workouts on the 'steady strides'
cd. the cd is a part of kathy's beachbody 'project you' kit. you can also purchase this cd separate from the P:Y kit at beachbody...they sell it for $10.
i enjoyed both of these workouts very much and highly recommend them if you are interested in outdoor power walking. (power=fast and very vigorous!)
the first 30 min workout was solid state cardio... while the warmup was pretty quick, an even faster pace is maintained for the middle of the workout. a cooldown phase is also provided and kathy talks alot, providing alot of form tips and asking you to check your perceived exertion rate and
being encouraging. the music
is also good and they have made it easy to follow with strong beats.
this workout is at a faster bpm/pace than the 'walk fit' disc 1 workouts are (those are also audio walking cds by kathy smith which are also fabulous) so i was a bit surprised at first but once i got into the groove after the
warmup, i was left feeling really good by this workout!
after that i was feeling good enough to do another 30 mins of power walking! the 2nd workout on the cd is tougher because it is cardio intervals and kathy says that you must master the first workout before doing this one.
a warmup and cooldown are provided along with three intervals of 3 mins each (very fast for 3 mins, slower for recovery for 3 mins -- repeated 3 times) and then
two anaerobic intervals (extremely fast) for one min each (with one min recovery). i did manage to run for part of those two anaerobic
again, the music is good and has a strong beat... obviously the music was designed especially for power walking.
there are also interval workouts in kathy's 'walk fit' cd kit so im expecting that they compare to
this 'steady strides' workout.
i was very impressed by these workouts and highly recommend them. not for absolute beginners though because one will need a fitness base in order to keep up to the very fast pace.
kathy's tone of voice is really great during these workouts. i found her voice to be very pleasant and her words to be effective.
This audio cd is part of the Project You set. It was the first workout from the set that I have tried, but I am familiar with some of Kathy's past workouts.
This is an audio-only guided walk you are meant to take with you outdoors. I do a lot of Leslie Sansone indoor-type stuff and I walk outdoors for transportation, but this was my first time doing a guided workout outdoors. Overall, I had positive feelings. There are two 30-minute walks and you can do both of them together. Kathy talks pretty much the whole time, offering form pointers and motivational advice about working out, eating right and setting healthy goals. I found her warm, friendly and encouraging.
Two negatives :) The music was kind of blah. It was mostly a generic funky techno beat and was pretty bland. Some better music would have been fun here. And also, I wish she would have told us when we were at the halfway point so we could turn around and go back.
On the plus and more importantly, I was impressed with my heart rate monitor readings when I got home :) I was in the zone for nearly the entire time (even though I did not feel sweaty or exhausted) and I burned 200 calories. For comparison, I typically burn 150 doing a half-hour Leslie Sansone type where I modify up so I am in my zone for everything but the warm-up and cool-down. So this is quite a difference :)
I also loved the versatility of the audio-only format. I ripped the audio into an MP3 and put this on my MP3 player. Now I can carry it in my bag with me all the time and turn my walks home and to the store etc. into actual, legitimate workout opportunities. I always felt funny logging that sort of thing even though it is quite a lot of extra activity sometimes. Now, I can maximize that activity into a proper, motivating and log-able extra workout.
I would be remiss if I did not add an extra comment about safety here, as you are meant to take this routine outside. I gave myself quite a scare the first time I did this, when I got a bit lost, then it got dark quickly and I found myself all alone in the middle of nowhere with cows as far as the eye could see :) So please, either walk with a buddy or limit your workouts to 7 pm or earlier.
I recently got PY Steady Strides and have done the CD in its entirety once. I was really sleepy when I did it, it had been one of those days. And I was too tired to workout. It was already 9 pm. Well...a walk is better than nothing, right? I only planned to do the first 30 minutes, but was so invigorated by then that I did the whole thing and had an impressive workout to boot! I also have Kathy Smith's 3 CD set WalkFit LeanWalk system (3, 4 and 5 mph, 2 30 minute workouts on each CD).
It doesn't say on the Steady Strides how fast it is, but my guess is that the first 30 minutes are 4 mph and the second 30 minutes are 5 mph. Both workouts have intervals.
I like the music better on her Steady Strides, more of a thumping beat, but it may depend on my mood though!
I find Kathy very encouraging without being cheerleaderish in Steady Strides, she gives a lot of form pointers and I think the time flew by! There's a cooldown song and warmup song between the two workouts, both fastpaced enough that I would call them active recovery/active warmup. I used this time to try doing ALL the form pointers she introduced during the first workout (not all at once, thankfully!): Heel-toe-push, sqeeze the butt cheeks each stride, walk an invisible line to engage inner thighs more, piston arms, shoulders back, engage core, breath properly, walk tall, invisible string in the navel pulling you forward in bigger strides. I hope all these will be second nature soon! I actually found it really helpful that the pace was lowered a bit between the two workouts, so I could practice form pointers before we took off in the second workout. Not much time to think during the second workout. It's not Cathe intense, but actually I found it to be upper intermediate/low advanced because of the intervals. There are even two anaerobic intervals (a minute each with a minute active recovery in between) near the end, and I got me really winded to jog with big arm movements. You're supposed to do whatever it takes to go anaerobic. If you're advanced enough, you could do jumping jacks or plyos.
I did the CD with my normal discman, and in the beginning it skipped a lot! I actually found it very helpful, because every time I bopped up and down in my strides, it would skip, reminding me to walk more smoothly forward as Kathy form pointed me to do.
I'm so glad I have my Steady Strides and other Kathy Smith walking CDs!