3 Mega Miles

Leslie Sansone
Year Released: 2012

Categories: Upper Body Strength , Walking Aerobics

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This DVD presents a 45-minute, mostly low-impact cardio workout which incorporates some upper body strength training using a band. I’ve seen two packaged versions of this workout – one which includes a single band, and another enclosing three bands. It is part of Leslie’s “Just Walk” series.

The workout is led by Leslie Sansone, instructing live, and is divided into three “miles” plus a separate warm-up and cool-down/stretch. Aside from the band, no equipment is needed except for proper footwear. Leslie wears weight-lifting gloves during band work, which helps securely grip the band and keeps the latex smell off the hands. It is a nice tip for any DVD using a band.

The set is spacious and light (a nice visual change from the Bat Cave of the last several years). The music sounds new, but -– disappointingly -- is on the soft side compared to Leslie’s voice.

The DVD is chaptered as follows:
-Play Entire 3 Mega Miles Program
-The Warm Up Walk! (3 minutes)
-Mega Mile 1 (14.5 minutes)
-Mega Mile 2 (12 minutes)
-Mega Mile 3 (14 minutes)
-The Cool Down Walk & Stretch! (7 minutes)
-The Father Scott Story (background on one of the cast members) (5.5 minutes)

The warm-up simply introduces Leslie’s basic steps, and Leslie says you can skip it if you are an experienced walker.

In the first mile Leslie is with a cast of six background exercisers -- five women and one guy (Father Scott). Some of the cast members previously appeared in other Just Walk productions. The toning band is not used in this mile. There are the usual side-steps, kicks, knee lifts, tap-outs and kick-backs (hamstring curls), but Leslie shakes things up with several tweaks, in particular adding new arm patterns to some of the steps. For example, she will walk up four, back four, but add in a kick. Push-back arms are added to kick-backs, and jumping jack arms to side steps. Leslie also includes heel digs, which she hasn’t done in videos very much for a long time. She also has a few moves, including a jump rope bounce and tap-backs. Leslie even does a couple of simple, easy-to-follow combinations. A couple of the cast members modify a few moves (omitting arm patterns on some of the steps, eliminating the impact in the bounce move).

Leslie has only two cast members with her in the second mile. They begin with a long “mambo combo” (mambo steps to the front and to the side), followed by a “boosted walking” (gentle jog) segment. Band work then begins, concentrating on upper body work (mainly shoulders and chest), but with feet still moving at an aerobic pace.

It is Leslie solo for the third mile. She leads us through more of her classic Leslie steps, although she also includes a punching move. She then returns to more band exercises, this time concentrating mainly on triceps and lats, although Leslie sneaks in some squats and a few stationary lunges. The last few minutes slows down the pace prior to the official cool-down.

The entire cast returns for the cool-down and stretch, and finish up with a celebratory conga line!

Collage rates 3 Mega Miles as Intermediate, which is certainly appropriate if one is doing the entire three-mile workout. Leslie is always beginner-friendly, though, and with the chaptering it is very simple to choose to do just one or two miles.

Bottom Line: Despite many positives, I feel mixed about this DVD, and about Leslie’s Just Walk series in general. On the plus side is the spacious light set and some new moves by Leslie. There’s new music, too (although it is too soft on this particular DVD). However, there is just a sterile feel to the Just Walk series. In the past I've always enjoyed Leslie’s chatting with her eclectic casts mixing longtime instructors with “real people” of varying ages and body types. In the Just Walk series Leslie appears to be using mainly young female fitness-model types (like you see in most workout DVDs these days), and has relatively little interaction with them. Some VFers have indicated they prefer this more professional approach. I kind of like the older Leslies, though, where I feel I’m out walking with my friends!

3 Mega Miles is readily available both online and retail.

Instructor Comments:
Please see above. Leslie is her usual enthusiastic self, but has somewhat less personal interaction with her background walkers.