gMax 35 Total Body Challenge #1

Steve Gilbert
Year Released: 2014

Categories: Total Body Workouts

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The following is a review of gMax 35 Total Body Challenge 1.

What is gMax 35? gMax 35 is a 7 DVD workout system led by Steve Gilbert. It’s based on ‘balanced, layered, cross training'. In the set you get two total body workouts, two cardio workouts, 2 split workouts, and a yoga/isometrics workouts. As the title of the series suggests, these workouts are all 35 minutes long. Each include a comprehensive warm up and a brief stretch/cool down in addition to the main workout.

Who is Steve Gilbert? He is a certified personal trainer and ASEP certified coach. He is an unknown in the world of video fitness and this is his first DVD release that I'm aware of. Steve’s personality during the workouts is low key yet warm. If you’re someone who doesn’t care for Tony Horton or BJ Gaddour because they’re too over the top, Steve Gilbert and gMax 35 just may be your cup of tea.

Total Body Challenge 1

Main Menu: gMax35 introduction (this is where you’ll figure out how to calibrate your weights), with music, without music

Exercisers: Steve does the work out with 2 women and 1 man. None of the background exercisers are particularly engaging so don’t expect a lot of warm fuzzies from them. While they don’t look despondent, they don’t exude as ‘yeah, let’s do this’ attitude either. All of them are fit looking and are wearing athletic clothing that is black and royal blue (the theme colors for the set).

Setting and Music: the set is a dark gym setting that is well lit. In addition to the equipment, there are lighted metal panels in the background. The music is not particularly loud and is instrumental with a techno/rock vibe.

Equipment: 3 sets of dumbbells (heavy, medium, light), a bench of some sort

Warm Up: jog in place, butt kickers, high knees, half jacks, side to side squats, shoulder rolls forward & back, triceps stretch, biceps/chest stretch, arm circles, side stretch, quad stretch, hamstring stretch, downward dog, Hindu squat.

Main Workout

The main workout is divided into sections based on body part worked.

Shoulders: shrugs (12x), overhead press (12x), shoulder fly (12x), front raise (12x), side plank arm raise (12x each side), pike push-ups (12x), shrugs (12x)
Chest: 6 move push-ups (right, then left, 2x through), decline push-ups (30 secs max reps), incline push-ups (30 secs max reps), isometric chest flex
Back: back fly (12x), prone back raise (12x), back fly (12x), lat row (12x), 2 min lat challenge (max reps pull ups or renegade rows)
Arms: isolation curls (12x), overhead triceps extension (12x), cross body hammer curls (10x), triceps kickbacks (10x), hammer curls (10x), max reps triceps dips (45 secs)
Abs/Core: bicycle crunches (30 secs), hip lifts (35x), oblique crunch (35x), side crunch (15x) forearm plank (45 secs)
Legs: squats (15x), stationary lunges (15x), alternating speed lunge (35x), wide stance squat jumps (12x), calf raise (35x)

Stretch (2:15): quad stretch, wide stance forward fold, downward dog, bow pose, up dog, child’s pose

Overall Impression: this is a pretty thorough total body workout. It covers all the bases with traditional exercises that don’t have a high learning curve. There’s not a lot of rest between exercises or body parts so there is a mild cardio effect. While this isn’t a ‘WOW’ workout, I did feel worked out so it accomplished what it set out to do. I just wish I would have liked it more. My biggest issue is the speed at which the reps are done. Steve does the lifts in a single count which makes it impossible to lift heavy and a) keep his pace, and b) not have your form suffer. I saw some form issues both with Steve and some of the background exercisers. I wound up doing partial reps or pulses in order to keep up with Steve’s pace and that worked fine for me.

Instructor Comments:
Steve is a nice and calm instructor.

Sabine Reuter