Our editor Anna Magee reviews Jillian Michaels’ latest DVD offering, Hard Body, released in November 2014
If you read this website regularly you probably know we have a bit of a thing around here for Jillian Michaels and her fitness DVDs. We first got addicted to the 30 Day Shred, the original 25 minute HIIT workout that hit the stratosphere for the trainer that made her name on The Biggest Loser in the US because it was short but effective and got us fit fast.
The new Hard Body DVD shows the super-trainer is not exactly ready to hang up her leggings just yet. There are two 45 minute workouts called Level 1 and Level 2 but whatever you do, do NOT go straight to level 2. The first level is tough enough and the second, well, it’s near impossibly hard in terms of the good pain it illicits in your muscles. Jillian even admits, ‘I know this is hard, I even had second thoughts about this workout and thought about making it easier but I want to challenge you.’
In each workout, there are seven circuits each of which done twice through, featuring Jillian’s signature strength, cardio and abdominal training combinations which mean you get a killer workout to your muscles while also working up a serious sweat because of the combination of high impact cardio and low impact resistance training dh’s become known for.
For Jillian, there’s no such thing as a bog-standard lunge or plank. She has to add about three other things to these moves so that you’re working so many body parts it hurts everywhere. Case in point, at one stage we were doing not only burpees but burpees with weights and a jump at the end. At another we weren’t just doing push ups, but walking push-ups with arm lifts and three squat jumps at the top. The result is a workout in which you get maximum sweat for the time you put in.
Here’s how I see it. I am such a busy person that if I am going to commit 45 whole minutes of my life to doing a workout DVD (not to mention the tenner I am spending on buying it) I want to feel like I have really worked out and really challenged myself. I don’t want to feel as though I’m at my mother’s Jazzercise class (in fact, one of Jillian’s favourite lines is: ‘This is not your mother’s workout’).
I also love how Jillian inserts bits of personal motivation throughout: ‘You don’t know what you’re capable of until you try,’ she shouts. I am skeptical about that kind of thing but when it comes to Jillian, I kind of believe her. I am seriously hooked on her DVDs and this one delivers.
Jillian Michaels – Hard Body is £8.99 from Amazon
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