Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Cheese Ain't The Only Thing That's Getting Shredded Around Here

I tend to shy away from fad exercises. I don't know why, but the more people endorse a specific kind of exercise, the more I want to NOT DO IT.

Especially if those people are celebrities, because I know that they are living on a diet of water, cayenne pepper, and liposculpture anyway. I could exercise twenty hours a day and still not see those results.

So the more I've been hearing Jillian Michaels' "30 Day Shred", the more I have wanted to run the other way.

In case you have no idea what I'm talking about, Jillian Michaels is one of the trainers on The Biggest Loser, and the "30 Day Shred" is a twenty minute interval workout designed to be done every day. It increases in levels of intensity so that you can see some real results in just thirty days.

I tried to ignore all the people, both on the internet and real life, who were telling me that they were impressed with this workout. I am pleased as punch with my own interval walking/jogging routine that I downloaded from some online fitness magazine. I don't need to do anything scary-sounding, like shredding.

But then I saw the video on sale at Target, and I realized that a) my regular routine doesn't do much for my flagging derriere, and b) our family beach vacation is just about thirty days away, at which my flagging derriere will be required to make an appearance in Lycra. And in public.

It was like the perfect storm of exercise inevitability. I was powerless to resist.

Yesterday was day one of The Shred. And I'm still here, so count that in the plus column.

Since I am (quasi) committed to this, I wanted to approach it with the right mindset. Which of course meant finding the right workout clothes. I made sure to wear my best sports bra, my favorite t-shirt, my good yoga pants (capri length, natch), my good shortie socks (the cushy ones, not the hole-y ones), and the right elastic band for my hair (the one that keeps my hair back, but does not pull so hard that it gives me a headache.)

It only took me twenty five minutes to get ready to go to my living room to workout. Does that make me crazy? (Don't answer that.)

I shooed the kids out (it's better that way, really), grabbed my soup-can weights, and turned on Level One. Since it was my first day, I followed the exercises demonstrated for beginners. I didn't want to get too crazy, and I felt pretty good when I was finished. I mean, it's only a twenty minute workout, right?

Then I woke up this morning.

I was a little stiff getting out of bed, but I didn't think any more about it as the kids and I headed down to breakfast.

As I squatted down to reach the oatmeal out of the pantry, my quads decided that it would be a nice time to SECEDE FROM MY BODY. They just up and quit, my friends. The burning was enough to make me start planning ways in which I could spend my day in a semi-reclined position.

And it was then that I remembered the shredding. Apparently, twenty minutes IS enough time to make you feel like a loser who has never used a single muscle in her body for her entire life. Heh.

I only have myself to blame, really. I went into this thinking that my legs needed more work than my arms. After all, I spend most of my day hauling around twenty six pounds of thrashing baby, and that's an arm workout in itself.

So I was pleasantly surprised to find that my legs were feeling really strong during the video. I even let Jillian goad me into deeper lunges and higher jump-ropes. I AM A FOOL. My mind was writing checks my body couldn't cash (quick, name that movie!).

Of course, I had to do it again today because that's the deal, but the quads were having none of it. As I whimpered my way through the static lunges, I consoled myself with the fact that it's only twenty minutes long.

And if my legs don't fall off, they have the potential to look great at the beach.


  1. After you have done the Shred for a week, you will never look back!

    I am addicted to Shredding now. I love how it makes me feel and look and it's only 20 minutes. Everyone can fit 20 minutes of exercise into their day.

    You will probably want to upgrade to some hand weights though if you decide this is something you want to keep doing. I found the soup cans hard to hold after a while.

  2. Anonymous7:05 AM

    I have thought about trying this too- maybe your attempt is just the incentive I needed. Question, how do you go about keeping the kids out of the room?
    Mirabella MOM
    PS- I take at least that long to get ready when starting a mew exercise endeavor.

  3. Anonymous7:07 AM

    I admire your dedication!

    (And I love you)


    PS: Top Gun

    PPS: Who said it?

  4. I have been wondering about this myself...the wii fit workout just ain't cutting it and my treadmill is on the fritz! Maybe I'll succumb to the torture soon! Good luck!

  5. Hey, I'm so proud of you! I know you had not wanted to do this for a while, but now you've inspired me to do it. Especially since I've been warned off the trail by our mother due to some roving bands of hoodlums who are accosting joggers, or something. We are gonna be H-O-T at the beach!


    BTW, like Rob said, it's Top Gun and to answer Rob, Stinger said it to Maverick. (Because, you know, our father only made us watch that movie, all the ding dang time!)

  6. Oooo! I can't wait to know how this works for you. The 20 minute thing is what has me interested. It sounds like the perfect post-partum workout since you may actually have a chance of finishing it. And if I can't move afterward, well, I'll be on maternity leave and the baby can just latch himself on to eat.

    So if you find your Shred video collecting dust in about 2-3 months send it my way. :)

  7. Funny post! I totally agree w/ you about fad diets / exercise stuff. BUT I bought the DVD 2 weeks ago and the shrink wrap hasn't come off yet. Thanks for the motivation :-)

  8. Oh no... they've got YOU too?

    Great. I'm really going to have to look into this now. Peer pressure!

  9. That's funny that you mentioned the Shred DVD, I had heard some good things about it but didn't personally know anyone who could vouch for it. I went ahead and ordered it on Amazon today (along with some other things that I 'needed'). Thanks for sharing!

  10. Welcome to the bandwagon! I only Shred about twice a week usually, since I make it to the gym the other days. I'm on level two, with no intention of moving up to level three any time soon. I love the upper body workout the most, since we do a lot of lower body at the gym. You'll look and feel great at the beach.

  11. Yeah, it was just 8.99 on Amazon and I couldn't resist!!!

  12. OUCHIE!! I'm not sure I could handle that! I do need something, though, since I can't figure out how to do DDR on the Wii, and the Leslie Sansone DVD from the library is good but annoying. I mean, how many times do I want to hear the same lame conversations?

  13. I admire you. I simply cannot motivate myself to do any kind of exercise for more than a week or two. Guess I'm better at shredding my vanity than my wobbly thighs!


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