Not to say it was easy. While doing my first day (Level 1) of the 30 Day Shred, I realized just how weak and physically unfit I am. Not that I didn't already know that, really. But I could barely do the modified push up! I am not getting into the "gun show" anytime soon with these flabby upper arms! (Full disclosure: I used 3 lb weights. Baby steps, guys, baby steps.)
Another difficult part was the sit-ups, but not so much because I hadn't done one in ages, which I hadn't, but because of Hazel. She kept jumping on top of me! She even started biting my ponytail at one point and brought me a toy to play. Geez. She was also fascinated when I was doing the jumping jacks, which might be my favorite move because it reminds me of being in elementary school for some reason. Anyway, on the first set of jumping jacks she kept barking at me. I knew that would happen. On the second set, she started jumping with me. Oh, Hazel, always the comedian. Eventually she resigned herself to watching me from the couch while chewing her bone.
One move that gave me some trouble was the side lunge (I think that is what it is called). You lift the free weights in front of you, to eye level, while lunging to the side. I felt like I wasn't doing it right for some reason, the lunge part. Like, my legs were too far apart or something. Practice will make perfect I guess.
Funny enough, even the cool down posed a challenge. I discovered I am very inflexible when it comes to doing the splits and have no balance to speak of. When Jillian told me to grab my leg and pull it behind my back to stretch my thigh muscle (what is that called?) I almost toppled over! Maybe it is because my legs were wobbly from the strength exercises but it was a bit embarrassing. Luckily, the boy wasn't home to witness it!
Surprisingly, given my asthma, I most enjoyed the cardio. The jumping jacks, the jump rope, the glute-kicks—I viewed them as a reprieve from the strength and abs exercises! I definitely felt the burn. For those of you who might be wondering, "how hard can you really work out in 20 minutes?" let me tell you, The 30 Day Shred is no joke.
Still, the good thing about the Shred is it went by fast. Though I am sure it won't always feel that way and there will be days when 20 minutes feels like forever. But overall, the Shred wasn't as scary as I imagined it to be. Some people in blogland made me a bit fearful of what the workout would be like and of Jillian but I kind of like my new tough-girl trainer's snarky attitude. She's encouraging but she isn't like an annoyingly-upbeat cheerleader. She gives it to you straight. I liked when she said there are no breaks because if you only want to work out for 20 minutes, you gotta push hard the whole time. And she's right. If I am only going to work out for 20 minutes, I have to give it all I've got!
Now I just have to stay with it. And I am planning on it. Because, as Jillian says, if you want to see change, you have to work for it. That's just the name of the game.
Image via www.wiiliving.com