Top positive review
Look no further, this is your ONE AND DONE strength training DVD, and it's fantastic!
November 24, 2016
I LOVE my strength training workouts and this DVD has EVERYTHING all wrapped into one pretty package. Don't let the "Walk On" name fool you into thinking this is your typical walking/Leslie Sansone style DVD. It's not, it's SO MUCH BETTER (more on that coming). I currently own, and rotate through ALL of Jessica Smith's fitness DVDs, and have been a fan since she first hit the solo scene in the mid 2000's. I have many favorites, but it takes an EXTRA SPECIAL DVD to become a new favorite. This DVD has earned that spot, as my new favorite, in-out-and DONE strength training system and will be one I KNOW I can grow with by increasing my weights and varying my intensity. I don't feel that this DVD is a rehash of Jessica's other strength routines at all. While some of the moves may be familar, the style and presentation, as well as the length of the routines, make them complemental, but not identical to her earlier releases.
A little background on me, for those who may have never read my reviews. I am in my mid-30's and have exercised regularly, primarily with a combination of Jessica Smith, Ellen Barrett and Beachbody DVDs (21 Day Fix, and Country Heat are my favorites) for the last 6 years. I appreciate a challenge, and love a DVD that presents something that is fun, challenging and effective. I would consider myself, at peak, an intermediate to advanced exercisor. At the time of this DVD being reviewed , I am 24 weeks pregnant. I have been able to maintain my strength and fitness through the use of Jessica Smith's workouts, and currently exercise a minimum of 30 minutes a day, 5-6 days a week. This review is being made in regards to experiences and thoughts of these workouts from having done the intermediate option with some advanced "balancing" variations throughout.
Packaging: This system consists of 4 seperate routines, on a single disc. The DVD comes packaged in a hardshell case, with artwork as shown in the item description. There are no inserts, but a Monday thru Sunday schedule/workout rotation is included on the back of the DVD cover art, incorporating the four routines from this DVD, as well as suggestions for additional cardio on alternate days.
Menu: You have the option to play all FOUR segments together, or select one session at a time. There is no mix/match feature, but you CAN turn the music for the routines On/Off at the start menu.
Equipment Required: A set or sets of dumbells from 2-10 pounds depending on your fitness level (I stuck with 5's and 8's), a sturdy chair to help with some of the balance work (optional), a resistance loop (optional, although you can also use a flat resistance band tied with a knot to achieve the same effect), and a yoga mat (optional for a short portion of the "Total Body Timesaver" routine)
Demonstration: Jessica Smith, the creator of this routine, presents the intermediate option, and sticks with 5 pound weights throughout. Her Mom, Debbie, demonstrates lower impact modifications, and holds for beginner levels, or those with range of motion issues in certain joints. And on advanced modifications, Raquel demonstrates some higher impact moves, namely for the cardio intervals, but also incorporates more balancing moves for those ready for the extra challenge.
As with ALL of Jessica's workout programs, the moves are demonstrated with proper form with discussion on what muscle/area is being worked, with options, or course, for all levels. For those who may not be familiar with Jessica's personality, she is friendly and lively with an upbeat attitude, and cheerful sense of playfulness, without being over the top or cheesy. Her method just encourages you to want to get up and move and makes the workouts SO MUCH FUN. I also love how Jessica motivates, but adding in motivational quotes, inspiration, and backed knowledge of the benefits of the moves demonstrated in these routines.
Workout #1: Upper Body Circuit Walk (35 minutes)
Equipment Required: A set of light to medium handweights depending on level
This upper body targeted routine works you from shoulders to core, all done standing. So no floor work for the core, or the chest is required. This routine starts off witha short 3 minute, body weight only warmup, and is followed by intervals of upper body strength work, interspersed with low impact, cardio intervals designed to get your heart rate up to burn more calories. The "superset" technique is used for the strength moves, meaning you start each move with 4 SLOW versions of the move, followed by sets of 16 (give or take a few reps) of the same move done at a faster pace. Don't worry, you won't be throwing those weights around. Multiple muscle groups are also used at once, to increase caloric expenditure. So while you may be focusing on the upper body, you may be doing so balancing on one leg (options are available for those with challenges with balance). A few of the moves you'll see in this routine include standing chest flies, scoops, shoulder presses, rows, bicep curls, tricep kickbacks and deadlifts. The final cardio segments is fun and leads into the standing core segment. This include kickboxing moves to target the core such as punches, The core segment at the end is all done standing, using a single dumbell, and includes moves such as single leg chops with a cross knee crunch, knee raises and "kettlebell" style swings. A four minute cooldown completes the session.
Pros: Fun music, moves are familiar, but done in a way to challenge the muscles. Lots of variety.
Cons: No countdown timer.
Workout #2: Lower Body Circuit Walk (35 minutes)
Equipment Required: A set of light to medium handweights depending on level
ANY workout that starts off to the tune of Tone Loc's "Wild Thing" is bound to be a winner! This routine was my FAVORITE of all of the workouts on the disc, mainly because I LOVE working legs, and as Jessica will tell you, these big power house muscles, burn a LOT of calories when at rest, so let them burn and shake!!! As with all the the sessions on this DVD, these exercises are all done standing. (Jessica and Raquel use 5# weights for this routine, Debbie sticks with lighter weights) The workout begins with a quick 3 minute warm up, followed by a series of lower body focused exercises. Like with the Upper Body routine, we see a mix of slower/faster paced movements. This routine consists of segments of roughly 7-8 minutes of strength based traning, mixed with 2-3 minutes of cardio (with options for low impact to some additional impact based on preferences) that continue to target the lower body muscles. Some of the strength movements throughout this include deadlifts, pulsing squats, squats to side leg lifts, pulsing curtsey lunges, plies with side to side arm pulls, side to side lunges, and balancing work (single leg leg presses, glute squeezes, knee pulls, pendulum squats etc). The workout is finished with a 3 minute cooldown, which you WILL appreciate when finished.
Pros: BEST music on the DVD, and in my opinion, the most challenging of the routines. BIG MUSCLE BURNERS that you FEEL WORKING.
Cons: No workout timer.
Workout #3: Total Body Time Saver (17 minutes)
Equipment Required: A set of light to medium handweights, anywhere
from 2-10 pounds (depending on level)
This little gem packs a BIG PUNCH in regards to working your body head to toe, quickly and efficiently and is an excellent solo workout if you're short on time, or an add-on if you just want a little more. There are three level options, with Debbie, using a lighter set of weights, and opting to hold some of the moving and balancing poses, Raquel, using a medium set of weights, but using more balancing, and Jessica, using 5+ pounds, and going somewhere in the middle (generally tapping the toe vs balancing). This routine clocks in at a total of 16 minutes, 48 seconds and starts with a short, 3 minute workout using your body weight. The music is pumping, and upbeat (if you loved the Cardio
Abs DVD music, then you'll recognize it here). The exercises start with double-sets of side to side squats to shoulder presses, a single legged squat (held in place for beginner, and with one leg balance for advanced), standing chest flies, standing one-legged rows and chest scoops. This set is followed by a double-set of plie squats with bicep curls, shoulder raises, and triceps kickbacks. A short 3 minute cooldown incorporates a set of single sided knee raises with arm chops to work the core, as well as a modified warrior 3 pose to stretch the backs of the legs, back, shoulder and work your balancing muscles. As always, careful attention to cueing and form IS discussed, with each move being performed at a steady, yet controlled pace, to get you the benefit of working the eccentric muscle fibers as well as the primary muscle groups.
Pros: Upbeat music, multiple-muscle groups being worked at once for an efficient workout, various options based on level. Total body
Cons: No countdown timer
Bonus Routine: "For Stronger Knees" (20 minutes)
Optional Equipment Required: A study chair to help with balance, a resistance loop, a yoga mat or soft surface
**Note** I was able to use my resistance loop from the "10 Minute Solutions: Belly Buns and Thigh Sculpting DVD (Jessica Smith), but you
can do ALL of the moves sans loop, or simply use a flat resistance band by knotting it and using it in a similar fashion.
The title of this routine is a bit of a misnomer, as you're going to work to NOT ONLY strength your knees, but your hip flexors, thighs,
glutes, inner and outter thighs and those DEEP rotational muscles in the hips. This routine in and of itself has SOLD this DVD for me,
hook line and sinker. This routine is sneaky, because as you're going to discover, you're not exactly doing a lot of knee work throughout,
but actually focusing on the muscles that attach and surround the knee joint itself, strengthening the knees secondarily. By placing the
resistance loop around the calves, and below the knees, you get the benefit of additional resistance and muscle toning, ALL DONE from a
standing position. One of the things I LOVED about this routine, was little blips on the screen, that actually explained how even the
TINIEST of moves helped to strengthen the knees. Some of the moves with the band include single leg extensions, both forward and side to side, clam-shell raises (standing with knee opening), concentrated squats using a chair for reference, and even a few moves without the
band to work the calves. A study chair is used to help with balance and support. A few stretching moves at the end can be done optionally
on the floor. There are NO deep flexing movements and there is absolutely NO impact with this routine.
Pros: Felt absolutely amazing, got a great COMPLETE lower bodyworkout without ANY impact AT ALL. Learned how each separate muscle group in the legs can affect the knees. Felt this ALL OVER from the waist down.
Cons: Again, no countdown timer.