Toby Massenburg
Year Released: 2012

Categories: Circuit Training (cardio and weights) , Step Aerobics

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This has already been broken down super nicely by Acescholar so I am just going to add my impressions. I do not have his original workout (Max 30) to compare with. Toby uses a set of heavy weights, a set of light weights, and a step (I used the top step of my Transfirmer step). I was wary of using the step too much as I work out barefoot and have mostly eliminated the step from my workouts, and therefore did some of the cardio without the step, but in general Tobyís exercises were controlled enough for me to still use the step. The step is mostly used for cardio but is also used for I three or four rounds, such as the pushup sequence, split lunge with back foot on step, and a squat series with one foot on the end of the step.

As noted in the other reviews, I found the cardio to (sometimes) be easier than the strength, but that worked out great for me Ė I wanted to use this workout as a strength routine with a cardio impact and therefore pushed myself harder during the resistance exercises. I really enjoyed both the cardio and strength portions and the time flew by! Which is great for a 70 minute workout! I like that it was carefully organized into 10 blocks, and I could count them down. I also appreciated the countdown timer. And as there were three levels (progressing from easier to hardest) for each it was easy to take it down a notch if need be (and for future use easy to kick it up a notch from the get-go). So lots of functionality there.

My main complaint is that because of the separate ab workout Ė which is 20 minutes (and Iím glad itís included but if combined, who has 90 minutes to work out?!) there was not really any ab emphasis in the main workout, it was upper/lower with some secondary core work in some of the functional or twisting type moves. I would have preferred if just one of the blocks focused on abs so you could feel like you got a total body workout.

My second complaint (very minor) is that Toby really hits the legs hard, which certainly adds to the cardio impact, and it seems lighter on the upper body, which is OK, but then from the upper body, he did not work the triceps at all. There was some bicep (curls with some squat variations), chest (pushup series), shoulder (lateral arm raises with split lunges/reverse flies in a later set/lots of overhead combinations), and back (twisting row to an overhead press/renegade rows), but no tricep work! I realized this by the 10th block and was able to work in some triceps (in lieu of other arm work) in the last block.

On the whole though this is an excellent (advanced) workout which is flexible due to the three levels, and the brief rests between exercises helped me to push through all 70 minutes too. I did not do the ab workout. Production quality is high and Toby and the girls are pleasant to work out with. The music was somewhat hard to hear at times but was good. I will be using this work out a lot in the future, I think that it really challenges your endurance! Overall grade A-!

Instructor Comments:
Toby is enthusiastic and professional and gives good form pointers. One of the things I REALLY appreciated is that he mirror cues, a lot of instructors donít seem to do that anymore. He mostly does the workout with you but sometimes goes to point out what the girls are doing, and he is very complimentary of them. Another plus, Toby didnít seem to do or say anything overly redundant (i.e., no annoying mannerisms) which is great!

Emily B.


Toby leads this 72 minute C+S workout in an spacious set with 2 background exercisers. Also included is a separate 15 min floor core routine. Modification options are offered and you will need a step bench & dumbbells for this workout. There are music options available.

This workout is comprised of 10 blocks. Each block contains a strength exercise followed by a cardio routine and then is repeated. Within each exercise you perform a base move for 20 seconds, add to that for 20 more seconds, and finish with an all out plyo or full body exercise for 20 seconds.

Exercises include: cross country ski to plyo lunges, side hops to skater, punches adding jacks, squat & lunge adding a chop, renegade rows adding a side plank & dumbbell raise, bear crawl adding a tuck jump, and dead lift adding a backfly. Core work includes: crunches, double crunches, toe reach, bicycle, plank to pike, side plank, and supermans.

I rate this an advanced workout that is totally doable for most fitness levels- just stay at the base move. This is a real calorie burner that will have you pouring sweat! The pace is fast but not hectic at all. I was able to use medium weights (15#s) for most exercises. Toby is super motivating and fun! His cuing is great and I look forward to more from him. I received this dvd to review.




Equipment: Step with three risers/ two sets of weights

There are 10 BLOCKS, and each block has a sculpting move and a cardio move that is repeated. There are 3 levels to each move, 20 seconds each level for a total of 60 seconds each move.


SCULPT: Side front squat/Side front squat and shoulder press/Power press (jump squat press)
CARDIO: Quick squat/Skier squat (heels off floor)/Jump squat
30 seconds rest
30 secs rest

Sculpt: Dumbbell swing/Double high swing (each arm extends into Y)/Walking swing with arm raise
CARDIO: Tap back (off of step)/Plyo lunge off step/Driver lunge (tap step with opposite arm)

Sculpt: Side Clean Forward Lunge/Side lunge clean twist lunge/Side lunge curl chop lunge
CARDIO: Shuffle Jog/Shuffle Lunge/Run Lunge (deep lunge)

BLOCK 4: (light weights)
SCULPT: Split Lunge off side of step/split lunge lateral raise/split lunge iron cross
CARDIO: Wide lateral tap downs off step/wide tap down cross reach/wide jack pull down

SCULPT: Cannon ball plank with shoulder tap/Cannonball push-up/Cannonball Spider Push-Up
CARDIO: Double Side Hop Driving Knee/Single Side Hop/Ice Skater with Reach

SCULPT: Rebound Lunge Power Clean (weight in R) /Rebound Lunge High Clean/Rebound Lunge Jerk
CARDIO: Kickbox--Cross Punch Hi-Lo Punch/Cross Punch Power Combo Punch/Cross Punch Alternate Power Crunch
REPEAT Ė weight in L

SCULPT: Plank Row/Plank Row & Twist/Plank Row & Punch
CARDIO: Straddle Plunge off step (jump down, step up)/Straddle Plunge Jump (jump down and up)/Straddle Jack (double time jump)

SCULPT: Turn Lunge & Strike (L side elbow to knee)/Turn lunge & Push Press/Turn Lunge & Combo Press
CARDIO: Step Out Jack/Jumping Jack/Star Jack Plyo Jumps

SCULPT: Side step up/Side Step Up with High Pull (upright row)/Side step up with High Pull Balance (side leg lift)
CARDIO: High Step Back Knee Drive (L leg)/High Touch Down Knee Drive/High Touch Down Front Kick
REPEAT (R side)

BLOCK 10: (step platform)
SCULPT: Cross over Deadlift Reverse Fly/Uneven Cross over Deadlift Rev Fly (right foot on platform)/Single Leg Cross Deadlift Rev Fly
CARDIO: Bear Crawl on platform to Double Squat Reach/Bear Crawl to Power Squat Thruster/Bear Crawl to Tuck Jump


I would say on the whole this workout is advanced. I think, though, that the cardios range from intermediate (kickboxing inspired patterns) to super advanced (straddle jumps on 3 inch risers). Both the sculpting moves and the cardio moves have three levels, and you can modify up or down by doing the easier or tougher level for the duration.

I liked the workout a lot, although the intensity of the sculpting moves for me was limited by the fact that I couldn't go very heavy due to the pace and my sense of what is safe for my joints.

It's also worth nothing that the dark mats produce a kind of glare. This doesn't really effect visibility, but it does make the set look a little odd.

There is no chaptering in this workout. Unfortunately, you have to go back to the main menu to get to the ab workout, but it is worth it. I really liked the ab workout. It was crunches done well (low and controlled) and plank variations -- including my favorite, bird dog. In fact, I think I will use this as an add on.

One thing I really liked is that the "order" of the moves is clear -- sculpting move, cardio, repeat. The moves aren't complicated, and you don't stand around wondering what he just did or what type of move is coming next. I also think that the three levels makes it easy to modify up or down.


Instructor Comments:
Toby is encouraging and clear--a good instructor all around.