Travel Fit

Cathe Friedrich
Year Released: 2009

Categories: Circuit Training (cardio and weights) , Total Body Workouts

Video Fitness reviews may not be copied, quoted, or posted elsewhere without the permission of the reviewer

Show oldest reviews first

I've had various Cathe workouts in the past, but although I've liked some of them, I've wound up getting rid of all of them, as I've found that I don't really click with her as an instructor. However, I decided to take a chance on Travel Fit, as I've been trying to incorporate more resistance band/tubing DVDs. (I have found that alternating these types of workouts with more traditional strength training is enhancing my fitness results.)

In her brief Introduction to this workout, Cathe explains that this is a routine using only a resistance band and combining isolation exercises, compound moves, and brief cardio bursts (without the band). Cathe instructs live in a large studio (I loved that it was in a high-rise overlooking Philadelphia!) with four background exercisers. There is no modifier, although Cathe herself sometimes will mention an easier modification of the various exercises.

The Main Menu offers options for Introduction-Play-Chapters-Credits. The exercises below are as they appear on the Chapter submenu. I have added details for the Warm-Up, Abdominals, and Stretch only, as most of the exercises are self-explanatory (and have already been broken down by previous reviewer cardiomama).

*Warm Up (4 mins: heel digs with biceps curls, knee lifts with chest presses, hamstring curls with arms up/down, elbow to knee, end with squat digs)
*Band Pull Downs
*Band Pull Backs
*Close Grip Band Pulls
*Lunge Backs with Band
*Double Width Band Pulls
*Cardio Squat Digs
*Band Bicep Curls
*Band Curls and Presses
*Split Lunge Overhead Presses
*Cardio Plie Rope Pulls
*Tricep Double Arm Kickbacks
*Bow and Arrows
*Tricep Overhead Extensions
*Deadlifts and Lunges
*Side Lateral Raises
*Cardio Puddle Jumpers
To Floor at 32 minutes:
*Push Ups
*Double Arm Band Pulls
*Outer Thigh Presses
*Abdominals (reverse crunch is only move with band; also full situps, "L" crunches, bicycles, and plank)
*Stretch (4.5 mins: lying quad stretch, child's pose, cat/cow, down dog, chest stretch in forward bend, standing stretches for triceps & shoulders)

Overall, I liked this workout. As Cathe says in the Intro, if you think it is easy, think again--the routine can be made more challenging simply by increasing the tension on your band (i.e., gripping it closer) or using a firmer band. As a high intermediate exerciser, I definitely felt that I got a good workout. I did feel that there was more work for the upper body, but I liked the ways in which Cathe used the band for the lower body as well.

There were a few things that I didn't like. First, Cathe and crew seem to be using super-long bands, as it appeared that her reach was better than mine for many of the moves. I tried different bands and even tried using my resistance tubing, but I still had a bit of trouble at times, so you may want to make sure that you have an extra-long resistance band (6-8') for this workout. Second, I wasn't crazy about the abs work. I'm not sure why Cathe gave up on using the band after just a single move, but I didn't enjoy this more traditional abs segment in what was supposed to be a band routine.

In the end, this meets my needs as a solid band routine, and I would recommend it.

Instructor Comments:
Cathe is obviously an experienced, skilled instructor who cues well and always provides form pointers. To me, she sometimes comes across too scripted, although I didn't find that to be too much of an issue in this workout.

Beth C (aka toaster)


Wow, Cardiomama did such an awesome job in reviewing Travel Fit. So I will just add my 2 cents worth and some.

I worked out to Travel last night and I have mixed feelings about it. Its not advanced. The cardio is pretty simple. For the first time working out to a Cathe, my heartrate dropped out of it's zone...SHOCKER! I'm tall...bleh...the bands did NOT work for me for overhead press so I had to sub side delt raise. It was funny because I was moaning about how this is not working for someone my height and then Cathe says, " You tall people have more work" and I laughed outloud. Uh, its not even working Cathe. I think those bands with handles would work better. Ok, I will start with what I liked. I loved the simple warmup. Loved it better than the STS warmups. Cathe is so h-a-p-p-y in this workout! She got her mojo back. I didn't like the shoulder work..bleh because the band was too short for my height. I had trouble with bicep work too. The band kept slipping out of my hand and I was wearing the Cathe gloves too so the band is too short. I noticed Cathe was using a different band than the background gals. I think her band was the latex kind where the other gals had the Cathe latex free brand. I didn't like the cardio that was low impact and didn't really do that much for me. It was pretty easy for Cathe's reputation. I guess I'm not into fast ski squats, sumo plies and puddle jumps.

Right after the warmup, my heartrate dropped out of its zone with all the shoulder work. I definately started to "feel" like this was NOT advanced. Its more intermediate type of Cathe workout. Great for beginners and intermediates. Or for people not wanting a tough tough workout while they are on vacay. The music was ickie..boring until the abs and stretch. Loved the abs and stretch. Ok, what I loved. I loved using the bands for triceps(kickbacks...yummy...1 arm french press with double band...even better) and loved the 1 leg deadlift with the bands into static lunges. Loved it! In fact, I will do it twice, that is how much I felt the burn. And this is coming from someone who can't do deadlifts anymore because of a healed bulging disc in my back. I can do deadlifts now with the band the way Cathe shows. I loved the back work using the band seated on the floor. I'm combining this with the seated back floor work with a band from Athletic Training. Great combo. I loved the abs. Really felt it! And the stretch was relaxing and wonderful. I'm a Cedie fan and my workout partner so I liked seeing her in the background all tan and lookin' good.

Overall, I will keep this workout because of what I did love about it. I may not do Travel Fit in it's entirety. I might pick and choose. For example, use the warmup of Travel Fit and then add the tricep work and the deadlift/static lunge chapters to another Cathe workout like Athletic Training or 4 Day split upper body weights(they have GREAT band work by the way!).

Instructor Comments:
Cathe is so happy in this workout. Who wouldn't want to take her on vacation? Her teaching is encouraging and positive and she is working out and sweating right along with you. Her form pointers are legendary Cathe. I think this is a great workout for people in collage and dorms or small spaces. You only need a band and a determined attitude.

Mandy Lee


Cathe “Travel Fit” is a 50 min. total body resistance workout that uses a flat resistance band for standing & floor exercises, and there are short cardio bursts mixed into the standing section. There are a variety of resistance exercises for each muscle group that are sequenced w/ different rep schemes (single reps, partial reps, pulses, 4 count lift & lower, 2 count lift & lower). I think this a great workout because it works major muscle groups, uses little equipment, and is fast-paced (although there are short rests in between some exercises). Cathe cues well & has a pleasant personality (seems a bit more silly in this one w/ some comments). This workout would be good for those wanting an introduction to Cathe’s style (exercises she likes to use, rep schemes) because little equipment is used, the cardio exercise are low impact athletic style (and brief), rests are sequenced into workout, and she provides modifications for exercises. Resistance bands w/ handles can be used w/ this workout, too, it just cannot be a short one (for overhead exercises, could work for someone who is shorter) or one that does not stretch much (for most exercises, one would not use a heavy band).

Warm-up (3:35 min.)
Alternating heel digs (taps)> add bicep curl arms> alternating knee lifts w/ chest press arms> repeat sequence> hamstring curls w/ alternating arms to side & down> Knee lifts w/ single arm/elbow to knee> repeat sequence.

Step tap w/ single arm overhead reach> add single arm sweep (across body, chest level)> repeat sequence.

Leg (side) abductions (3), double clap, repeat on other side.

Alternating reach lunge (single arm sweep to side)> add single arm reach down to floor> repeat sequence.

Squat digs: squat low w/ overhead & pull-down arms> lift heels on lift of exercise> add bigger reach w/ arms on lift.

Work section (29:30 min.)
Lat pull-down: band held overhead w/ both hands, pulls down in front> 4 count both directions> 2 count> repeat sequence.

Shoulder (lateral) pull: band held in both hands, underhand grip, w/ straight arms at chest level> pull band to sides w/ alternating heel digs.

Lat pulls w/ elbows to sides: underhand grips> 3 pulses out, 1 count in> single count pulls> marches.

Rear lunges: band held in both hands, overhand grip at waist level> alternate pulses (3)> Isolation lunge: hold in lowered position of lunge, arms pull open to side, close to front & open, alternating sides.

Lat pull-downs: w/ marches and band folded in half.

Cardio/Squat digs> alternate the low & high arms.

Bicep curls: band under both feet, narrow stance, band held in both hands, hammer grip> pulses in top position (halfway)> 3/4’s position> repeat sequence> single reps> repeat sequence w/ band under one foot.

Curl & press: band under both feet, narrow stance, band held in both hands, hammer grip> bicep curl, then overhead press> OH presses (3)> curl & press.

Split Lunge: band held under front foot & w/ both hands>overhead press w/ lowered position of exercise, both sides.

Cardio/Plie jumps (heels lift) w/ alternating single arm “climb the rope”> hands on hips (light jump)> repeat sequence.

Tricep kickback (double arm): band held under both feet, forward bend (flat back)> single reps> pulses (3)> short rest> repeat sequence.

Bow & arrow (tricep & delt focus): folded band held w/ loop around flexed hand of extended arm, other arm is bent (shoulder level) & holds onto the band (center)> bent arm pulls back & reverses motion, single reps> pulses (15), short rest, repeat twice> repeat on other side> shoulder stretch (one arm across body, other arm holds), then overhead, single arm triceps stretch, both sides.

Tricep (overhead) press: folded band held w/ loop around hand of arm to side (of body), other arm is bent & hands holds onto ends of band> lift & lower for single reps> partial reps (3 up, halfway down)> single reps> repeat on other side> shoulder stretch> single arm overhead tricep stretch.

Deadlift: split leg stance, band held under front foot w/ both hands> 2 count lift & lower> 3 count lower, 1 count lift> Static lunges: single reps> pulses (7)> butt kicks> repeat on other side> short rest.

Lateral raise: band under front foot, overhand grip w/ band wrapped (once) around wrists> bent arm raise, 3 count lift, 1 count lower> partial reps.

Cardio/Puddle stepper,Puddle Jumpers: alternating step tap (stay in lowered position)> lateral skaters (jump)> repeat sequence> marches> heel digs> overhead arms w/ inhalation, reverse motion.

Floor (13:30 min.)
Push-ups: knees or toes> 3 count lower, hold (4), lift 1 count> single reps (8)> rest> repeat sequence (reduced reps for both exercises)> 8 single reps> stretch: sit cross-legged w/ straight arms, clasped hands held in back.

Back Rows: seated w/ bent knees, band looped around both feet & held in both hands for single reps> pulses (3)> repeat sequence> stretch: forward bend in cross-legged position, then stretch over to each side (walk hands over).

Outer Thigh: body is supine, w/ leg extended in air, the band is looped around both feet & (criss-crossed) held in both hands (elbows on floor)> open & close legs for single reps> pulses (3)> repeat sequence> stretch: hug knees into chest> extend legs on floor.

Reverse crunch: body is supine w/ bent knees in air, band is looped around both legs, ends on band held by hands (straight arms on floor), single reps> pulses (3)> singles> stretch: extend legs forward.
Sit-ups: arms reach forward w/ lift. Modification: crunches.

L position crunches: legs form an L (both straight, one on floor/close to floor, one held extended in air), arms held to sides> upper body lift w/ arm reach forward> hug knees, repeat on other side> 1/2/3/4 pattern: 1 rep, 2 reps, 3 reps, 4 reps, hug knees, repeat on other side> repeat on both sides once.

Bike Maneuver: body is supine w/ bent knees, hand behind head> alternate leg extension, other leg has bent, upper body crunch w/ elbow tap to inside of opposite side knee for single reps> add static hold then 2 reps. Modification: alternating oblique crunches.

Plank: on elbows/forearms & toes (knees for modification)> step feet out & hold> step feet in & hold> repeat sequence.

Cool-down (4:48 min.)
Lie prone (face down) w bent elbows, straight legs> quad stretch: bend leg & same side arm holds foot & hold, both sides> child’s pose> walk hands over to side & hold, both sides> cat/cow (spinal rolls in table position)> downward dog (upside down V)> walk hands to feet and hold straight arms w/ clasped hands extended> forward bend> hold w/ bent elbows> roll up to standing position> shoulder stretch (one arm across body, other arm holds), both sides> overhead single arm, triceps stretch> shoulder rolls, rear then front> hold w/ open arms to side w/ thumbs turned down, reverse hands & hold> overhead arms w/ inhalation, reverse motion.



This workout fits the bill for a travel workout. It requires little space and only uses a resistance band. It is exactly what I was hoping for from Cathe for travel. There is a lot of upper body work, some lower body, some cardio and some core. It is great for travel because I usually am walking frequently on vacations.
It is intermediate for intesity which is also nice for a "vacation" workout. I see myself using this every other day while on my next vacation. This and all the beach walks will be a nice way to stay active while away from my normal workout routine at home.



Travel Fit is 50 minute circuit workout that was designed for traveling since it only uses a band. Technically, you really need a mat and some gloves for the workout also. Many of the band moves will feel much more comfortable if you are wearing some weight lifting gloves.

There are 4 circuits of strength work followed by a short cardio circuit. Then there is a final strength section on the floor with some chest, back, outer thigh and ab work. The cardio can be done all low-impact, and these sections are fairly short. You definitely will not get the cardio-effect that you would get from Cathe's other circuit workouts, but I liked having the variety and taking a short break from the band work. Also, it would be quite easy to skip the cardio sections by skipping those chapters.

The moves are mostly familiar from Cathe's other workouts, but all pulled together in one place. It feels the most effective for the shoulders and arms, but there is chest and back work in here. It just isn't easy to work the back hard with these types of bands (without something above your head to loop over), in my opinion. There is a good push-up set with some slow pushups.

It is probably one of Cathe's easier workouts, but for it's purposes - travel - I think it does well. It would definitely fall into the "endurance" category. You won't build a lot of strength with this one, but it can be useful for maintenance when you are vacation.

I can definitely see using this workout when I am visiting family. I have heard complaints that it doesn't work the lower body enough, but that is fine with me. I am usually hiking when traveling or at least doing a lot of walking, so I like the idea of having something that would focus more on upper body.

I thought the music was rather bland (instrumental) my first time. However, the second time I used it away from home and had surround sound, and it sounded better and more motivating to me.

Overall, not my favorite Cathe workout, but I think I will appreciate this on occasion. It might be very nice to have the download version for a laptop when they are released this Spring.

Lisa C