A.M. and P.M. Walking

Debbie Rocker
Year Released: 2006

Categories: Floor Aerobics/Hi-Lo/Dance , Walking Aerobics

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All I can say is, too much walking in place!



This DVD is broken down into two approximately 30 minute walking routines. That includes the warm up, workout, cool down, and stretch. The first workout, AM Routine, starts off slowly and builds up, as though to wake you up for the day. The second workout, PM workout, is a little more subdued, as if preparing you to go to bed for the evening.

AM workout starts off with some great stretches and shoulder rolls. This is good, as you'll be using your arms a lot. Then the workout starts with lots of marching in place. Then you add do a move where you march three times and tap. Her next move is to march and add a knee. Then legs to the side. Seeing how she layers each move? It's as though you start from the center of your body and then the move gets bigger from there. In between, you are always going back to a "recovery" move, which is some rendition of marching in place. Near the end, where she picks it up, there's a segment on punching, do a skier type move to the back, some shuffles and easy jogs. Oh, there are also some rear and front lunges, which I jost jogged through. You end with a nice stretch.

The PM walking workout starts with the same type stretches and shoulder rolls. The moves in the PM walking are a little more vigorous. There's a out-in-out step, some punching, side steps with a cross, wide march, heel digs, hamstring curls, walking in place, (of course) and a few other moves.

The scenery is the same in each workout - lovely mountaintop with some palm trees swaying in the breeze. The AM workout is bright and clear, while the PM workout is (obviously) a little darker, as though it's the early evening. The music is not very memorable. Debbie is accompanied by two women, one of whom shows modifications.

PROS: This is a great workout for those who are just starting back to exercise or for those with some physical limitations (bad back, hips, knees). Debbie is very motivational in her manner and speaking. I love the things she said during the workouts. This is also a good workout if you have space restrictions.

CONS: I thought the workout dragged on a bit. Let's face it, it's a walking workout! I need something to get me going, like some more upbeat music. I also found that, although she had a lot of different moves, she didn't do them enough. She mainly marched in place, which was dull. I would have liked for her to move back and forth more or out to the side. I modified a lot, and was still a bit bored. She also does not mirror cue, and the cueing that she does is kind of crazy. Sometimes 5 seconds, 10 seconds, or 8 seconds before a move. You never really know when the next move is coming out. I guess that's not a big deal because the moves aren't tricky, but it is annoying.

I would have liked not to have to do so much to get my heart rate up. I wish the pace was quicker, but then it is a beginner workout.

So, I don't know what to give this workout. I would only save it for when I was injured, which I am right now. It won't be in my rotation a lot.

Instructor Comments:
Instructor was very encouraging and sincere.



I’m reviewing this video after doing each workout twice.

General workout breakdown: This video has two short cardio routines featuring simple walking moves.
*A.M. Walking (28 min.) begins with 4.5 min. of walking and upper body stretches (shoulder rolls, stretch overhead, and chest opener with hands clasped behind) as a warm-up. The first song (5.5 min.) has three steps & a tap into three steps & a knee; the second (6.5 min.) has side steps into side steps with leg in front and later with leg in back; and the third (7.5 min.) has jogging / shuffle, rear lunges, and forward lunges. 2.5 min. of walking with the same upper body stretches serves as a cool-down, followed by 1.5 min. of stretching primarily for the quadriceps, hamstring / calf, and lower back.
*P.M. Walking (25 min.) begins with 4.5 min. of walking and upper body stretches (shoulder rolls, stretch overhead, and chest opener with hands clasped behind) as a warm-up. The first song (6 min.) has open step (i.e. wide march), open & close step (i.e. out-out-in-in), step tap, side punch, step tap with arm swings, and side step; the second (4 min.) has open step, out-out-in-in, side step, side step with cross in front, and heel digs; the third (5 min.) has the wide march, out-out-in-in, side step, and heel lift / hamstring curl; and the fourth (4 min.) just has walking in place, leading into the cool-down. 1.5 min. of stretching primarily for the quadriceps, hamstring / calf, and lower back finish it off.
The AM workout moves at a slightly higher than moderate pace; the PM is slightly lower than moderate. Debbie sets up the workout like this: you march in place, she introduces a move which you do for a while, you intensify that move (by going deeper, adding arm movements - which are used particularly well in AM Walking, etc.), and then you return to walking (or sometimes side step). You will often repeat that sequence twice before moving onto the next new move. The idea is to vary the moves to change the intensity and thus increase your heartrate and keep your interest. The moves are almost exclusively athletic in nature.

Level: I’d recommend this to beginners through low intermediates. Intermediates can make this more intense by adding light hand weights (1-2 lbs.), exaggerating movements, adding in impact, substituting other moves, or taking this to the rebounder or Bosu. In fact, these two workouts are so compact you probably won’t have to do much to modify them to the small surface of the rebounder or Bosu.

Class: 2 women, 1 of whom is in charge of modifications, join Debbie. (For future workouts, I would recommend that the modifier exaggerate the movements so the difference between the modified and full moves is clear to the beginner. More importantly, Debbie should always describe what the modifier is doing, rather than just point to her.)

Music: typical Gaiam instrumental music. It’s upbeat, but it doesn’t have much of a beat. Honestly, Gaiam, what’s OK for the background of Pilates and yoga workouts just doesn’t work for cardio. It’s time to branch out beyond the elevator music company to find someone who specializes in cardio mixes.

Set: an outdoor mountain-top patio, ringed with tropical plants and palm trees, in Hawaii. It’s an overcast morning for the AM segment and a slightly overcast late afternoon / evening for the PM walk.

Production: the crisp picture and sound typical of Gaiam productions. The camera angles are helpful, with nothing too fancy or distracting.

Equipment: sneakers.

Space Requirements: You should be able to step to each side and/or forwards and backwards.

DVD Notes: The DVD is chaptered by song. You can choose A.M. Walking, P.M. Walking, or Interview (the same video interview with Debbie that’s on Walking for Weightloss). By the way, the Gaiam intro is easier to skip, although you still have to sit through the warnings.
A CD for outdoor walking comes with the DVD. This CD is different from the one included in the Walking for Weightloss DVD, by the way. There are two soundtracks with voiceovers by Debbie intended for outdoor walking, one for the morning (32 min.) and one for the evening (25 min.). Both have warm-ups and cool-downs of 2-4 min. The CD has much of the same music from the workout, but the beat is maybe a teensy bit stronger.

Comments: This is another good entry in the home walking video market. Beginners with perhaps some experience under their belts, more experienced exercisers of any level who are restarting or recovering, and intermediates who want a lighter day workout will find this rotates well with Leslie Sansone’s many offerings and the Walk it Off with George! Series. Debbie isn’t as bubbly as Leslie or as excitable as Petra, but her style and amount of cueing as well as talking while working out is similar.
Yes, there’s a good deal of marching in place with these workouts. As many wise VFers have pointed out, however, no Workout Police will show up at your house to make you do this workout exactly as is. Feel free to vary the steps as you see fit.
This DVD offers two different short workouts, in contrast to the Walking for Weightloss released at the same time, which includes a number of the same steps in the same setting but only has one long workout plus a shorter premix. The AM Walk to me seems like the most fun and varied, with the PM being the easiest of all of them; the longer Walking for Weightloss is more intense, thanks to the jogging segments, although there is a lot more marching in place on that one. There are different steps on the AM & PM walks that don’t appear on the Weightloss, and vice versa. That said, there’s not a ton of variety between AM & PM, although they do feel different, perhaps because of the background (not only time of day, but in the PM the crew shifts to another corner of the patio).
I should point out that Debbie asks you to bring your brain to the session, mentally focusing on what you’re doing, concentrating on your intentions, conditioning your mind, etc. She also talks about giving her some heart, sending energy into the universe, and opening up to possibilities. This may just cross the line into “New Agey” for some people. I don’t mind it, since this is definitely the type of workout where you get out of it what you put into it.

Instructor Comments:
Debbie is your coach for efficient and effective workouts; you are her “athlete in training” for the event of life. She does not mirror cue (i.e. when she says left, she means her left, not your left); this wouldn’t be so bad if she didn’t insist on starting on the right. In reality it doesn’t matter which side you’re on, whether you follow what Debbie says or what she does. She gives you plenty of warning when she’s about to move from walking into a move - too much, perhaps. She gives you a good amount of posture reminders and a few form tips, but there’s little to no instruction for moves like lunges. Debbie’s on the low key side. I suspect that with more experience in front of the camera Debbie will come off as more natural and warmer. She spends a lot of time talking, primarily focusing on explaining what you are or are about to do, encouraging you, etc. I do find her motivating, and I think she’s a bit more personable and relaxed in this DVD compared to the Weightloss one.