Sunday, November 27, 2011

I Tried a New Workout DVD Today

I have had this DVD lying around for actual years, and I never even put it in the player until today. It's the Tracey Anderson Method Mat Workout. Have you heard of this girl? She is, like, a fitness guru to the stars. I think saw her on Oprah one time with Gwyneth Paltrow. Since I pretty much do everything that Gwyneth Paltrow tells me to do, I ordered the DVD.

I just went to Amazon to look up the link for y'all, and I see that not only is the DVD no longer in print, Amazon will give me $14 if I trade it in. I am SURE that is more than I paid for it in the first place. And moreover, this is who I am: I will buy a workout video and keep it, untried, until it is a valuable collector's item, and then, only then, I will offer you a review of it.

I'm not sure how to describe this workout, exactly. It's not a full cardio-and-weight interval workout like my beloved Jillian Michaels regimen. It works on the large muscles in your hips and booty, then your upper arms and shoulders, and then your abs. For the first section, you stand holding on to a chair and do all kinds of leg lifts. In fact, I wish Tracey had mentioned that we'd need a chair for part of the workout, because I did the warm up and then she was like, "Now you need a chair for balance," and I had to go to the dining room and bring back a chair, which got me all out of my zone, you know.  So she takes you through all these different leg movements, which are great, because the leg you're lifting is working, and the leg you're standing on is working too. I was starting to sweat during this part, even though it's hardly high-speed or seemingly very intense.

Then she says you're going to do some standing ab work, but what happens is that Tracey Anderson does a sexy little dance while you try to figure out exactly what's going on with her body. I think it is some kind of rib isolation move, but she doesn't really explain it much. So I just boogied very, very awkwardly while she got her groove on. I think when I do the workout again, I'll substitute a different move.

Then she does this arm section. OMGFG SHAZBOT!!!1! I thought, no problem. She's not even holding weights, she's just standing there waving her arms in tiny little circles, like you would if you were casting spells with two magic wands simultaneously. So I'm doing it along with her, la la la, and then it feels like my arms are going to just snap off and fall to the floor. My shoulders felt like they were on fire. And she just kept on going, with her little gyrations and her cutesy pouty face. I mean, how long would you think you could hold your arms up? It shouldn't be a problem, right? But if I'm sore tomorrow, it is going to be from that. GEEZ.

Then we got down on our mat and did a bunch more leg lifting, which was mostly manageable until there was this crazy part where we're lying on our stomachs, Tracey and me, and we've got our knees bent and our heels together, and we're supposed to crunch our backs and booties and lift our legs off the mat, which is awesome for you but I feel like I'm going to the light. And I'm all, "HALP!" and she's like, "Oh yes, ahhh!"

This is where it helps to note that this is not a beginner's workout, I don't think. Or you can start it if you're new to working out, but there are large parts where you're not going to be able to approximate what is on the screen. I feel that I've gotten to where I can do 90% of this Tracey Anderson thing only after months of working out pretty regularly. Yet she doesn't say much about the difficulty level of what you're doing or the strength that it takes. For a real, true beginner, I think it could be discouraging.

Then there's a more traditional ab section on the floor, where you are doing crunches, but your legs are straight. Then she's like, "Let's cool down," and I'm like, "We've been at this for at least 45 minutes, I don't have time for a cool down. My children are hungry."

To sum up:

Some of the moves in this are probably very effective. One reviewer on Amazon said, "I saw great results. Especially in the butt area." Yes, I would say that's right.

This is a workout that your significant other will want to watch you do.

She is not the clearest at explaining what the exact form is, but the camera is on her the whole time, so you can just watch her and figure it out.

It is no substitute for a workout that actually gets your heart rate way up while working those large muscle groups, but I could see doing it a few times a week in addition to my Jillian ripping/shredding. It's different.

I've come to the conclusion that any workout works if you do it.

I am 1% more like Gwyneth now. And Madonna. Girls, call me.

That was one thing I did today. It's my parents' 43rd wedding anniversary. Also our garbage disposal stopped working. That was also a workout, though a way less sexy-looking one, unless you're into the big yellow gloves. LOLZ forever.

Happy Monday, y'all.


Amy said...

I started going to a Pilates class a few months ago, and it's the little movements--the ones you watch the instructor do and they look like nothing--that are the hardest for me! One thing she has us do is sit up straight, our legs out in front of us. We put our hands down by our thighs, and are supposed to lift our butts off the ground. It looks so easy. But it ain't!

Your little description of the little dance made me laugh. Some workout videos are like that--you're all, I don't think my version of this looks like yours!

You are so like Gwyneth now! I mean, even MORE than before.

Bren said...

"I've come to the conclusion that any workout works if you do it." Indeed. I'm so impressed with you, doing all these workouts!

I've been following something you may find amusing. I've gotten BORED with the workouts I've been doing. And there's this site called "bodyrock" that has a busty scary-fit girl with an eastern european accent providing a free workout video every day. And they're good. But the camera always zooms in on her cleavage, and she seems to be "accidentally" super suggestive during some moves. It's all sex-sex-sex. Which is very entertaining. But the workouts themselves are seriously great. If you aren't interested, Matt will be. I'm not saying you should do her workouts, but I am saying you simply must go watch.

Noan said...

The "arm section" paragraph made me snort my coffee.

AlGalMom said...

We have a Sesame St video called "Elmocize", and as soon as you began to describe the arm segment of your video, I thought "I know where this is going! Workout in a chair!" (this youtube video gives you a small taste of it Workout in a Chair smokes me every time, although at least the Sesame St singer has the decency to get out of breath while she's singing, instead of being blissfully unaware of the pain and suffering being experienced by those of us in the chairs.

delaine said...

Yeah for you! You are doing a great job of keeping that exercise regimen going. I'm proud of you. Some of your descriptions of the moves sound painful. Can you find a DVD for little old ladies? Cause I might know one.....

puncturedbicycle said...

I'm currently working out which bar of chocolate to eat. Your efforts are admirable.

That thing where you're supposed to lift your legs backwards off the mat like some kind of bug sounds discouraging to me, and I'm just sitting on my sofa. I may need to go back to bed after reading that.

Veronica said...

I have a prenatal exercise video that does that arm thing, and for that reason, I usually do one of my other prenatal exercise videos. It is unbelievably hard! And my arms shouldn't have to work that hard, because they are working hard already keeping the blood pumping to this baby. Or whatever.

Aimee said...

Hey, MY parents' 43rd wedding anniversary is tomorrow. Coincidence!

That video sounds absolutely horrible. Not because I don't think it would work, but because I've discovered I don't like doing the same workout over and over.