10 Pounds Down: Cardio Abs

Jessica Smith
Year Released: 2012

Categories: Abs/Core , Boxing/Kickboxing/Martial Arts , Total Body Workouts

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This is a super-versatile dvd with 3 workouts. You get cardio, a total body circuit, and an abs/core workout. All of this has been well broken down by the previous reviewers so I will just add my impressions.

The Cardio Abs workout has been my go-to workout when I don't feel like working out. It is a quick workout but she works you. I would rate it high intermediate if you follow the advanced modifications and progress with Jessica. There is definitely a lot of jumping around in this workout. She starts with a lower intensity move and then takes it up a notch. You can always stick with (or return to) the base move. There are a lot of kickboxing moves. For me, it is a fun workout.

Total Body Abs Transformer is a great quick circuit workout. You do moves for every body part and there are cardio bursts. Again, she works you. I use 8 lb dumbbells and get a great sweaty workout. The exercises work more than one body part at once which drives up the cardio component for much of the workout. Jessica includes some challenging moves- pushups with mtn climbers between reps, one-armed burpees!!! Again, modifications are given.

Concentrated Abs features a variety of moves, standing and on the mat. I always find Jessica's core work to be challenging. She is really good at setting up the moves and teaching you how to engage your core rather than simply going through the motions. I have to say this is my least used of the workouts since I rarely spend half an hour on isolated core work. But for exercisers than want or need to do core-focused workouts, this one is good.

If I am short on time but want a good workout, or I don't feel like working out, I will often use Cardio Abs. They way I most often use this dvd is to do the cardio followed by the circuit. It is a great workout. If I am inclined I will do the whole dvd (all 3 routines), but the first two is usually good enough for me.

I have recommended this dvd to others. It is very versatile and you get a lot of content.

Instructor Comments:
Jessica is a fantastic instructor. She is such a natural in front of the camera, so personable, so likable. She explains things clearly, she is encouraging; she is fun to work out with and seems so genuinely nice. She is one of my favorite instructors. I adore her.

Melissa P


If you're looking for a fun, straight forward, kick butt (but not to the point where you're totally wiped out) workout, then you might want to give this one a try! Cardio Abs is another great workout by Jessica Smith. The DVD contains 4 workouts: Cardio Abs, Total Body Abs Transformer, Concentrated Abs and a bonus workout called Tummy Torching Tabata.

This is a solid intermediate workout and requires dumbbells and a mat, depending on which workout you choose to do. These workouts get right down to business and pack a punch in a half hour. You have the option to play all, or choose an individual workout.

Cardio Abs is a 30 minute cardio workout that will have you punching, kicking and whittling your waist away with fun kickboxing combinations. The music has a nice driving beat and really adds to the contagious energy of the workout. There are some high impact moves, but Jessica always shows a lower impact modification. There's no fancy footwork here, just straight forward butt kicking.

Total Body Abs Transformer is a 30 minute, total body toning workout. It combines compound weight work (working more than one muscle group at a time) with cardio intervals to spike the heart rate and burn serious calories. There is no down time between each move, so take a deep breath and get ready to work!

Concentrated Abs is a 27 minute ab workout that combines standing and floor ab work. It starts with some balance work (the "balance challenge series") and then moves on to target the abs from every angle while standing and lying on the floor. There is a nice mix of plank work, crunch variations and some work on the stomach that engages the lower back.

Tummy Torching Tabata (bonus workout) is a 4 minute tabata style workout, which is 20 seconds of maximum intensity followed by 10 seconds of active recovery. I'll be honest here and say I didn't actually DO this workout since I can't do high impact, but I did watch it and it looks killer if you give it all you've got. You'll be doing air jacks, mountain climbers, jogging in place and windmill jumps. You repeat this sequence twice!

Overall, I really liked this workout! It's a solid 90 minutes of intermediate cardio, toning and ab work.

Instructor Comments:
As always, Jessica comes across as very likable and down to earth. Her cuing is great, she always offers modifications and she has her usual pleasant demeanor.



Full disclosure: I received a free review copy of this workout.

In the past, I haven't clicked with Jessica Smith's workouts. The workouts themselves seemed okay, but I just couldn't get into the workouts because I didn't click with her. So, she was on my "no buy" list until this workout came out. I was going to ignore this workout until I started reading some reviews and it sounded good.

Jessica is alone in these workouts. The set is large and airy. It looks like a warehouse loft type setting with large windows in the back. I know the workouts had music, but I have no memory of it. I would assume it was standard workout type music?

This DVD gives four workout options, 3 workouts that come in between 25-30 minutes and one 4-minute tabata style workout.

Cardio Abs: This is a fun kickboxing routine that focuses more than usual on the core area. In general, she gives a low-impact move, then gives a high-impact version, then a variation with more power. Because she was already high-impact, the third power phase of the move didn't include a low-impact version, so I had to figure out what to do. Most of the time, it wasn't hard, but sometimes I had to think harder than I wanted to. Moves include exercises like knee pulss, twisting punches, standing side crunches, etc.

Total Body Abs Transformer: This is a strength routine that uses moderate weights. It was surprisingly comprehensive given the timeframe of less than 30 minutes. To accomplish that, she uses combo moves like a single leg squat followed by a side leg raise while doing a cross bicep curl. I thought the combinations worked well and the moves seemed fresh and innovative.

Concentrated Abs: This was billed as a standing & floor routine that hits your abs hard from every angle. Well, it does accomplish the latter part of that goal - hitting the abs hard. But, the standing portion is short, one segment, before the routine moves to the floor. I thought that Jessica's explanation of how and why crunches can be good was good and educational. Then, she has you do butterfly crunches. The routine also includes plank work, bridges, and more crunches.

Tummy Torching Tabata: This section is "only" four minutes, but you go all out for that time. She leads you through 20 seconds of work followed by 10 seconds of rest. There are four exercises and you do them two times.

I think these workouts are intense intermediate workouts (as opposed to easier intermediate workouts). Jessica does a good job of cueing and encouraging you to do your best. The moves themselves seemed fresh and she puts things together in a new way in these workouts. At the same time, the workouts are repetetive in that she repeats those moves too many times. This led me to feeling bored at times. Plus, there are a lot of moves that are hard on the knees and hands/wrists.

Instructor Comments:
I thoguht Jessica seemed to have acquired a new maturity and confidence in these workouts over the previous workouts of hers that I have tried.

Laura S.


Jessica leads this workout alone in a LOVELY set with large windows in the back. The dvd contains three 26/27 min w/o's and a 4 minute tabata workout. You will need a set of dumbbells for this workout. Jessica provides modification options for many exercises. Includes a free downloadable meal plan.

Cardio Abs: This is a functional core focused kickboxing routine. Jessica does a great job of adding power moves to will get & keep your heartrate up. Exercises include: knee pulls, twisting punches, jack variations, punch & kick variations- always adding in core work & power, torso twist knee pulls, standing side crunches w/ tempo variations, cardio lunges & punches, knee chambers, and ends with a quick plank series.

Total Body Abs Transformer: This moderate weight strength routine really gets the heart pumping & hits all the muscle groups! Lots of great combo moves such as: single leg squat- side leg raise & cross bi curl, pushup up to Mt. climber, kneeling back stroke, lunge & row, balance shoulder press, oh tricep & toe tap, kneeling rows, static runners lunge, chest press with a crunch, and burpees (1 arm version is an option). Each exercise is done for 16 reps and groups of exercises are done 2 times.

Concentrated Abs: This is a standing & floor routine that will hit your core from every angle. You start with a great core focused balance challenge routine: balance stick knee pull and twisting knee pulls. Then move into: butterfly crunches, 3 limb planks, low back heel touches, oblique plank pike steps, side plank pulls, bridge with arm waves, and some crunch variations. Unique & fun routine that you will def feel the next day!

Tummy Torching Tabata: This is an all out 4 minutes of work! You perform 20 seconds of work followed by 10 seconds of rest. There are 4 exercises (butterfly power plyos, plyo climbers, butt kick jacks, & windmill floor touches) done 2 times. She does a great job of adding in big arm movements to get the hear pumping even harder!

I rate these all very solid intermediate routines. As always Jessica is a fabulous instructor with superb cuing and form pointers. I dont know how she keeps coming out with new & unique moves. The pace of these workouts is PERFECT- nonstop but not rushed. Really accomplishes a lot in under 30 minutes. Fun, fresh routines that I will be using A LOT! Great variety and really a lot of workout bang for you buck! I received this dvd to review.