Get Extremely Ripped: Lean MachineJari Love
Year Released: 2010
Categories: Total Body Workouts
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Currently, I am coming back from a really bad fitness year and am looking at all of my old workouts to see which still appeal to me. This is a DVD that I will keep, if only for the Weights & Abs workout - it's the reason I orginally got the DVD and the reason why I'll keep it.
I've tried many of Jari's workouts over the years, but have kept none of them after a time because they were just too long and, in some cases, too boring. This one, Weights & Abs, appealed to me because (1) I read raves about this workout specifically with details about the workout that appealed to me and (2) the 30-minute time frame. It actually appears on two different Jari DVDs and I chose the Lean Machine option because the cover claimed to contain "3 30-minute workouts" on the cover. Since I'm into shorter workout options these days, that sounded great. Keep in mind though that there are not three separate options on this DVD, but rather Lean Machine, a 56-minute workout with two longer segments - 30ish minutes and 26ish minutes. (The other DVD it's on is Get Extremely RIPPED! Body Rock.)
Weights & Abs does not include a warm-up, so you'll need to select the Warm-Up separately from the main menu. As with Jari's other strength workouts, this workout is broken up into separate segments working particular body parts, with the weight ranges used by Jari and the five background exercisers shown on screen. For some reason, this workout just flows for me and I find myself not watching the clock. The moves are creative enough to not seem like the same old, same old and the sequence of moves just flows and I don't watch the clock at all.
Lean Machine is different than her earlier workouts that I did - I think mainly because she tried to incorporate dance elements into the beginning of it. If you're a fan of dance, don't get excited; it's not really dance, but rather movements that go along with the synchronized strength movements. After a very fast warm up, Jari does this dance section with multiple background exercisers, none of which are a modifier other than carrying a lighter weight. In fact, Jari herself modifies some of the moves to take out the bounce or jump. In most of these sections, she starts with a lower body move that seems like a cardio move and then she adds a toning move to do with it. This segment seems to be a workout to itself and lasts about 30 minutes.
In the next segment, she does more traditional isolated strength work. In each section, she focuses on specific muscles, sometimes supersetting between two different sets of muscles. This segment lasts around 26 minutes and must be the third 30-minute workout they refer to on the DVD cover. However, it is not accessible except to go through the Lean Machine menu option and fast forward or skip to where it starts.
When I do it, Lean Machine is one of those workouts that I wonder why I don't do more often because it is so very different from other workouts. Plus, she includes a little bit of work in it for the low back, a problem area for me and, again, I wonder why I don't do it more often. Then, I don't for a long time. Regardless, I give Jari kudos for trying something different in it. However, Weights & Abs is a workout that do regularly at longer intervals than I should, but that is an integral part of my strength building collection.
I have found Jari kind of stiff and non-engaging in other workouts of hers (although I had liked her). Here, she is more relaxed and engaging which she still focuses on form and pointers.
I've used many of instructor Jari Love's DVDs in the past, including all four of her original "Get Ripped" series as well as her Extremely Ripped Boot Camp. Her original Get Ripped! is still one of my favorites, as I enjoy the straightforward strength routine that Jari offers on that DVD.
LEAN MACHINE is a bit different. First of all, I was partially attracted to this DVD because of the claims of "3 30-minute workouts" on the cover, but there are not truly three separate routines on this DVD. This DVD actually includes a 56-minute, multi-segmented workout that is rather disjointed, as it feels like it was pulled together from several different DVDs (more on this below). Plus, the style of this routine differs significantly from Jari's past workouts, although I actually found this to be a nice change of pace. The second routine on this DVD is in fact an approximately 30-minute workout, but some may be disappointed to find that this is a re-release of a segment from one of Jari's prior DVDs, Get Extremely RIPPED! Body Rock.
The Main Menu for LEAN MACHINE reads as follows: Complete Lean Machine--Warm-Up--Body Rock: Weights & Abs. I have described each of these segments in further detail below.
COMPLETE LEAN MACHINE (56 minutes total)
*Warm-Up (5 minutes)
Oddly, this is the EXACT SAME warm-up that is also a stand-alone option on the menu. This also appears to be taken from the BODY ROCK DVD, as it features Jari alone wearing the same outfit from that workout. Jari cues a fast-paced series of standard warm-up moves such as side-to-side steps, grapevines, hamstring curls, and knee raises. She concludes with a few brief stretches, including hamstrings and quads.
NOTE: For the following three segments, Jari works out with 6 background exercisers, all women. She uses lighter weights (5-8 lbs.) and first starts with a simple foot pattern, then adds the arms, making these segments more like AWT (aerobic weight training) than traditional strength work. Finally, the music is fun and upbeat--e.g., the first segment is an instrumental version of Prince's "When the Doves Cry."
*Arms and Legs (6 minutes)
Jari begins with a "skip" forward, adding a front raise. Next comes a lunge forward, side, back, and center, adding in a front a side raise. She then performs two squats to the side with an overhead press, and finally, a march with an upright row. This entire sequence is repeated several times, alternating the right and left leads.
*Arms, Back, and Legs (6 minutes)
Here Jari starts with a double side step with a hop, adding in a double back pull. She then performs an alternating side step lunge with an alternating bicep curl. The final move is a lunge to the side and to the back, adding in an overhead press. Again, the entire series is repeated several times.
*Back and Biceps (5.5 minutes)
This segment begins with a reverse grip bent over row, alternating this move with a bicep curl and rear lunge. This is followed by a double side step with bicep curl and then a shallow lunge with hammer curl, including pulses. The sequence is repeated several times. I really like this track! I usually don't enjoy rows, but they are fun here, and you can go a bit heavier with the weights once you have the footwork down.
*Lifts (5.5 minutes total)
For this section, Jari goes down to the floor. The first 3.5 minutes include prone back raises (half Supermans), knee crossovers and hydrants on all fours, elbow plank, and spider push-ups. The last 2 minutes consist of a brief cool-down stretch, bringing this portion of the workout in at 29 minutes. You COULD stop here, but the workout continues as described below.
For the remaining four segments, Jari is joined by a new crew of background exercisers (3 female, 1 male) for more traditional weights work. These sections feel more like her previous videos, although they also seem a bit odd, perhaps due to the editing--e.g., Jari is often cut off while still speaking at the end of the segment.
*Squats (3 minutes)
Jari calls this the "bonus legs track." She performs squats with reps of varying tempos, including pulses and what she terms "quickies."
*Lunges (5 minutes)
This is actually a mix of both lunges AND more squats. Jari starts with the same front, side, back, together lunge from before, but she also adds a double squat to the side and pulsing squats.
*Biceps and Shoulders (9 minutes)
This is a superset! Jari alternates sets for biceps with sets for the shoulders, switching up between heavier and lighter weights. She starts with a "straight reps" set for the biceps but moves on to tempo variations. For the shoulders, she begins with front raises but also performs side raises and upright rows.
*Total Body (10 minutes total)
Jari calls this the "bonus abs" segment; it consists of 5 minutes standing work and then an additional 5 minutes floorwork. For the standing moves, Jari does basic squats and lunges while isometrically holding a weight overhead. The abs work on the floor includes bicycles, butterfly, vertical crunch, lifts, reverse curl, spider push-ups, and slow push-ups.
The second half of "Complete Lean Machine" comes in at 27 minutes total, making it sort of fit the description of a 30-minute routine. However, this time does NOT include either a warm-up or cool-down.
Finally, as noted above, this DVD also includes "Weights & Abs," a 30-minute routine (actually 33 minutes total) taken from Jari's prior Get Extremely RIPPED! Body Rock. The routine itself does not include a warm-up, so you'll need to select the Warm-Up separately from the Main Menu. As with Jari's other strength workouts, Weights & Abs is broken up into separate segments working particular body parts, with the weight ranges used by Jari and her five female background exercisers shown on screen. Unfortunately, the Weights & Abs workout is not chaptered, so you can't skip around within segments like you can on the rest of this DVD. Here is the Weights & Abs breakdown:
*Squats and Hamstrings Track (5 minutes)
Squats of various tempos, including "quickie" squats and bottom-middle-bottom holds, and then the same with deadlifts.
*Chest and Triceps Track (5 minutes)
LONG chest set on floor (4.5 minutes) including alternating alternating single arm chest press, slow presses, pulses, and singles; finish with very short (30 seconds) set of triceps push-ups.
*Back and Wide Squat Track (7 minutes)
Start with single arm row, regular and palm-up grip; switch sides several times. Follow with double arm row pulses. Wide squats, including pulses and pulsing lunges; finish with another set of both single and double rows.
*Biceps and Shoulder Track (8 minutes)
This track alternates sets. Start with heavier weights for bicep curls, alternating tempos. Switch to lighter weights for front and side shoulder raises with isometric holds; repeat both sets.
*Abs work (6 minutes)
Series of crunches including oblique crunches (with crossover and straight leg), reverse curl, bicycles, slow lifts with straight legs crossed at ankles, and slow bent leg raises.
*Cool down (2 minutes)
Brief series of stretches on the floor.
Despite the oddities of this DVD, I like it! It is different from other things I have, including other Jari Love videos. I even like the fact that the first and second halves of the Lean Machine workout don't really "go" together--this just gives me the option to choose whether I feel like having a lighter or heavier lifting day. (Or, for a tough challenge, try doing "Weights & Abs" first, then just the first three segments of the "Complete Lean Machine" workout--you'll get about 50 minutes of full-body weights AND cardio!) As long as you know what to expect, I would recommend this fun and different DVD.
I like Jari. She is definitely more relaxed here than in her original DVD, and in the first part of the Complete Lean Machine workout (i.e., the AWT segments), she really seems to be having fun. Yet I still find her to be pretty straightforward in her overall approach, and I like that she gives form pointers throughout the workout.