Review: Pick Your Level Weight Loss Pilates Is A Go!

Grade: A+

So my latest DVD workout attempt was Pick Your Level: Weight Loss Pilates. Admittedly, this might be the best disc I’ve done so far and I know you will be so proud of me when I tell you I did the entire 30 minute workout ::coughs::overthecourseofthreedays::coughs:: – that’s right, I actually finished the entire DVD. I think that’s a first.

So let’s review, first the things I liked, which kept me sticking with it:

  • Unlike Just My Size Yoga, this DVD felt like a workout. I am fairly confident a calorie or two has been burned this week and I felt truly challenged. Gasping on the floor, asking, “Does my body do that challenged?” a couple of times, but not so often that I died.
  • Unlike 10 Minute Solutions: Kickboxing Bootcamp this DVD was not made for the Athletically Elite. You do not HAVE to be super skinny with loads of energy to survive 5 minutes (although it certainly wouldn’t hurt).
  • Despite being faster paced than JMS Yoga, it was not so fast paced that I tripped over myself, a la 10 Minute Soltions: Fat Blasting Dance Mix. They walk you through where to put what and do a couple of slow demonstrations before moving into the faster pace and usually that faster pace actually came right in time, you know, when you are thinking, “If you don’t let me move my arm soon, it might fall off.” Before that.
  • They explain in the beginning that there are three people working out in the video at 3 levels. It’s obvious who is who, not only by the varying degrees of agility, but more noticably by the progression of skin to clothing ratio. The first model (level 1 – that would be my level) is wearing skin tight legging style pants and a tank top. Not skimpy, but not a powder blue full body suit. Level 2 wears something more resembling a sports bra with leggings. Level 3 manages to somehow show more skin, in a slightly skimpier different colored sports bra, but just in case you get confused between 2 and 3, Model 3 will usually have one leg over her head in impossible looking positions. Think broken Barbie doll.
  • One cool aspect is you aren’t supposed to limit yourself to one level. If you are feeling like, “I could be doing more,” you can temporarily move from level 1 to level 2 or even 3. If you are thinking, “this level choice was a bad idea, I think I’m dying,” tone it down a level. Easy peasy. I know we’ve all seen the DVDs with the multiple people and it’s all cliched, but it really does work well in this video and it’s interesting to see what people in shape are capable of.
  • I like that the Level 1 chick doesn’t appear to be immortal. She occasionally makes faces as if to say, “oh this one is tough,” or breathes a little more deeply than the anamatron robots in levels 2 and 3 who could probably sing the national anthem throughout the whole workout without breaking a swear, dropping a beat, or batting an eyelash. Okay, maybe they’d bat an eyelash, but that would be intentional.

The DVD is divided into three-ish sections – standing, side lying and lying lying. I personally prefer the standing workout, but that’s probably because if there was a level 0, I’d be all over it. But I kept up fairly well with level 1, and occasionally I did a level 2 move. I was pretty proud. I’d consider keeping the DVD for awhile but since I switched to a 2 at a time plan on Netflix, I’m planning to send it back by the end of the weekend so something new can come in cause I don’t see MM parting with Cinderelmo anytime soon. But I do plan to try another Pilates DVD soon and I’m pretty proud that I finally finished a disc. So let’s hear it for Pilates:

YAY PILATES!!! A+ For Not Sucking!!

Have you tried any new workouts recently?

Aloha Friday: What Are You Reading?

It’s time for another Aloha Friday, the day that you take it easy and look forward to the weekend, in Hawaii and blogland anyway. As you should know by now, over at An Island Life, Kailani decided that on Fridays she would take it easy on posting and ask a simple question for you to answer. Nothing that requires a lengthy response.

If you’d like to participate, just post your own question on your blog and leave your link at An Island Life’s blog. Don’t forget to visit the other participants! It’s a great way to make new bloggy friends!

So this week, I want to know…

What book are you reading right now? Is it GOOD?
If you aren’t reading anything, what would you like to be reading?

To answer my own question, right now I’m reading The Well of Lost Plots by Jasper Fforde. I’ve been reading it for two or three weeks right now. Fforde books always take me awhile because the plots are packed and intense and full of detail, but in an amazing way. The book, which is third in a series which begins with The Eyre Affair, takes place largely in a fictional world, that is, in a world inside of fiction. Where books are taken very seriously because they live inside of them. There is a whole government in this world responsible for the caring and maintaining of literature from the inside and it appears that books are written here, rather than by the author, as one might expect. So there are all these amazing little gems about the jurisfiction agents working to keep things running smoothly, and it’s absurd and brilliant and… well just wonderful.

Last night I read a paragraph that looked like this:

“Take the first had had and that that in the book by way of example,” explained Lady Cavendish, “You would have thought that that first had had had had good occasion to be seen as had, had you not? Had had had approval but had had had not; equally it is true to say that that that that had had approval but that that other that that had not.”

So I’m thinking you can understand why it’s taking me awhile to finish this, but still LOVING it. And I normally read before bed, when of course, I’m the most tired, so I rarely get more than a chapter in in one night. 🙂

It's Real Life: Introducing Mommablogsalot (via video!)

So this week for Jessica @ Farm Fresh‘s It’s Real Life she’s decided to take us beyond the comfortable confines of our cameras and ask us to take videos of ourselves introducing ourselves. I know, totally opening the door for embarrassment galore. But never one to back down from a challenge, I decided to play along anyway. And it did indeed present a couple of challenges:

Challenge #1: Figure out how to take a video. I learned pretty quickly that my webcam does video also which made this pretty easy.

Challenge #2: Take an appropriate video. You know first I had to play around with all the cute options like you can make it in thermal heat map mode, or Cartoon Comic Book mode, etc. So I tooled around for a bit and made a few gems like this one:

Challenge #3: Figure out what to say. Like actually for the real video – because the one I just showed you wasn’t it. I promise. I took like 30 videos, 25 of which were so lame I refuse to upload them. I decided after long thought to drag MM into this, hoping his cuteness would make the video more interesting. I think it worked:

Challenge #4: Drag MM away from the computer so I could pick a video. My kid is a camera whore and apparently also a webcam video whore. Sorry for the obsessive use of the wh word. We took a gazillion videos together and he seriously cried when I finally told him we were all done and kept whining to take more which we did a few times. We made cute “shorts” like this one:

Challenge #5: Pick a video. I obviously settled for the three videos above. Out of the 30ish that we took.

Challenge #6: Figure out how to get them online. At first I tried uploading them directly onto the blog but dh complained about bandwidth restrictions so I moved them to Google Video but that didn’t seem to be working so then I tried YouTube… So far it seems to be working! Challenge? You’ve been met.

For more videos of other people’s hopefully tech savvier and more interesting real lives just click here!

Oh this is also part of another fun meme over @ Heart of The Matter on Fridays!

We also took a couple of fun pictures that I wanted to share – I hope that’s not cheating: