Toning With WeightsJenny Ford
Year Released: 2012
Categories: Total Body Workouts
Video Fitness reviews may not be copied, quoted, or posted elsewhere without the permission of the reviewer
I just completed Jenny's Toning With Weights workout from her YouTube channel. It is also included on her 5-workout compilation DVD with Step-by-Step III, Toning With Weights, Hi Lo Cardio II, and Abs and Core (with Bonus Kids Workout!). This workout is traditional, isolation strength training at its best. The pacing was just right to allow for heavier weights. Jenny leads the workout solo and gives sufficient form pointers, reminders, and encouragement throughout. The pieces of equipment needed are dumbbells of various weights, a step with two sets of risers, and a chair for balance. I only used the dumbbells and the step. She suggests heavy, medium, and light dumbbells. After a thorough warm up you begin with lower body, doing unweighted squats and static lunges. Later on, probably after the second or third cycle through, you add weights. During the workout, she had you do one set of 12-16 reps of whatever exercise, and then switched to another exercise. For instance, you would do 12 reps of static lunges on one leg, 12 reps on the other leg, 12 reps of stiff legged dead lifts, then 12 reps of squats before moving on to upper body. Then it would be 12 reps of lateral raises, followed by 12 reps of bicep curls, then 12 reps of tricep kickbacks, etc. So you didn't work any body part to exhaustion before moving on to the next. I liked that. I believe Cathe used a similar set up in Total Body Trisets. All the exercises were very traditional. Off the top of my head, the exercises included are as follows:
• Static Lunges
• Stiff Legged Dead lifts
• Lat Rows
• Bicep Curls
• Hammer Curls
• Tricep Kickbacks
• Chest Press
• Calf Raises
• Seated Overhead Tricep Extension
• Dumbbell Shoulder Press
• Lateral Raise
Nothing really mind blowing. However, given today’s propensity for instructors to go fast, fast, fast with endless reps or to try to be different for the sake of difference (while sacrificing form), this was a welcome, comfortable workout.
I think that this workout could be suited for most levels, just change up your weight. Absolute beginners should probably go with another workout. While Jenny is very, very good at explaining form and reminding one to hold in their abs while doing certain moves, there are better DVDs out there for rank beginners.
What I Liked
The exercise selection, the music, and Jenny. I've been doing Tracie Long’s functional fitness workouts for awhile and loving it, but coming back to straight isolation work was good too. Comfortable and meditative. Oh, and I really liked the music. Jenny didn’t use anything tricky and fancy, just straight up traditional strength work. If you like traditional, no nonsense, isolation style weight training with deliberate pacing and no cardio, you are going to like this.
What I Didn’t Like
The workout was VERY light on tricep work. Probably 3 sets total. And I wish she had included some inner and outer thigh work. Lastly, no ab work. While the workout is long (50 minutes) some standing ab work dispersed throughout would have been nice. Could definitely have cut down on some of that lower body to include some ab work in the mix. However, since this is on the same DVD as her Abs and Core workout, I can understand why she left it out.
What You May Need to Be Aware Of
She does have some pushup work, so people with tricky wrists beware. However, she does show modifications for doing pushups. Additionally, if you have tricky knees, she does quite a few sets (I want to say five or six?) of lunges and squats. They are spread out (12 reps of lunges one leg, 12 sets of lunges the other leg, 12 sets of squats, then on to upper body) so you may be okay, but it’s something to be aware of.
Jenny was friendly and encouraging without being too hyper or bubbly. She offered good form pointers throughout.