321 Training Method, Level 1

Ramona Braganza
Year Released: 2009

Categories: Balance/Medicine/Mini/Stability Ball, Circuit Training (cardio and weights) , Step Aerobics

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from my breakdown/review in the general discussion forum(late sept. '09):

So, I bought this like a blind fool(no reviews, clips, etc). This workout is intended to be a set of 3. I emailed Ramona last week, and asked since the cover says Level 1.

from part of an email:
Yes I will be making level 2 and 3 probably by the end of the year. Level 2 will be compound exercises and level 3 will be advanced exercises incorporating various training techniques I use with my clients.

So, here's how the dvd is set up. There are Day 1, 2, & 3 workout menus. It says you're supposed to do all 3 days, take 1 rest day, and start that cycle again. I typically have Sundays as my rest days, and emailed again asking her about doing say Day 1 Monday, Day 2 Wednesday, and Day 3 Friday with extra cardio on Tuesday, Thursday, and optional Saturday. She claims I won't get as fast of results that way.

Other than that, here's how each menu is. Each of the days is broken into Cardio 1, Circuit A, Cardio 2, Circuit B, Cardio 3, Core A.(you are able to click on any of those segments) I think the main menu also has a "stretch" segment, which imo is really just a warm-up & could double up for a cool-down.

Each cardio Menu is the same--a segment on how to find your target hr range, and different options. You're supposed to do only 10 minutes each time you're doing a cardio. She gives you options of treadmill, eliptical, bike, walking, and stairs. She just tells you for ~1 minute or less what you should be doing(intervals, incline, increase resistance, options for stairs, walking--proper form, and get into your target hr range). There are no cardio options to follow along to on the dvd. You have to do them on your own.

The Circuit A & B for each day give you 3 exercises. Aim for 15 reps x 2-3 sets. She mentions to try to build up to 20 reps x 3 sets and increase the weights & ways to make the workout more challenging. I'll break down the circuits in a second. My only beef with these is this. They have instuctional 30 second-1 minute clips to see how to do the exercises correctly on the menus, including weight to use. However, when you go to do the full circuit, they only do it[meaning the circuit] once thru. You have to do it a total of 2-3 times though.

Core segments menus are the same on each day(just like the cardio). They give you 3 choices, and you can mix & match however you want, just try to get a little variety. I was shocked that all 3 core segments are the exact same as from her 321 Baby Bulge Be Gone dvd--with the exeception of any post-natal talk(same exercises, set, and people). [5/11/10: my review of the Baby Bulge Be Gone is now in the review database]

The first core segment on this dvd is the same as Core 1 on Phase 1 of BBBG. The second on the dvd is the same as Core 2 on Phase 1, and the 3rd core segment is the same as Core 3 on BBBG.

Workouts are ~an hour, you need 5, 8 & 10 lb weights, and a step.

Day 1 circuits: (Chest, Legs, Triceps) Ramona is training someone 1 on 1 in these, in a gym setting.

Circuit A: Chest press on a flat bench/step(8 lbs), Step-ups on a step/flat bench(all reps on one side, then do the other leg), and Tricep dips.

Circuit B: Chest Flies on an incline bench(5 lbs)--incline is supposed to be 45 degrees, Squats, Overhead Tricep Extensions on incline bench(5 lbs)

Day 2 circuits: (Back, Legs, Biceps)

Circuit A: 1-arm rows(10 lbs) all reps on one side then switch sides, Deadlifts(5 lbs), and Seated Twisting Bicep Curls(5 lbs)-twist as you go up.

Circuit B: Reverse Flies(5 lbs), Elevated Single Leg Lunge(stand a couple feet in front of a bench w/your back towards it, one leg goes back on a bench--chair would work too) all reps on 1 leg then switch, and Standing Hammer Curls(5 lbs)

Day 3 circuits: (Shoulders, Legs)

Circuit A: Seated Shoulder Press(5 lbs), Forward Lunges--alternating legs, and Lateral Raises (5 lbs)

Circuit B: Forward shoulder raises(5 lbs), Plie squats, and Upright Rows(5 lbs)

Final thoughts: To be honest, I'm still on the fence. I like the workouts and how well the menus are layed out, but having to re-start each circuit segment is a little annoying. I finally just looked at what the exercises were, and did them myself instead of re-starting the segment. It is dvd-r (purple back), the same as BBBG. The price is $30, which I believe is how much indivually each BBBG was, unless you bought all 3, which brought it down to $25/each. So, I've probably shot myself in the foot for not waiting until all 3 Levels of 321 Training are available.

5/11/10 update: no level 2 & 3 available as of yet, so not sure what's up with that.

Instructor Comments:
Ramona comes across as friendly, down-to-business(but not in a drill sargent way), not over-the-top cutesy as some other instructors. Her counting's not always perfect, but I don't hold that against her.