I am at the end of my new-to-me Kelly Coffey-Meyer workouts (though I have her newest on pre-order) and it seems I have saved the best for last. Your Best Body is an incredible workout duo. In some ways it is similar to Weights (which I also love) but in other ways it is unique. In fact, if you owned nothing else by Kelly Coffey-Meyer but Weights and Your Best Body, you could create a lot different workout rotations that hit every muscle in your body. Let’s look at the basic structure of Your Best Body then compare it to Weights.
Your Best Body contains two total body workouts. Kelly works one upper body muscle group to fatigue, then hits the lower body then gives you an active recovery. For the main workouts the active recovery is core work (primarily standing ab work, but each workout also has one plank move). However, there are premixes that have cardio active recoveries. You have 5 circuits that follow this pattern. The similarity to Weights is the structure–strength work alternated with active recovery; in Weights the main active recovery is also core work but it also has premixes that substitute cardio for the active recovery. However, that is the end of the similarities. Weights is heavier strength work, Your Best Body is endurance level strength work, at least for the upper body. The exercises are unique and unusual; in fact, I found the back work very challenging–new moves I have never done before that I really felt. Weights is a split series; Your Best Body gives you a total body workout in each 30 minute workout. So like I said, if you only owned Your Best Body and Weights, you would have a plethora of interesting ways to hit every muscle group. And I have to say, I adore the premixes in Your Best Body, but more on that in a minute.
The first time I did these workouts I did the main workouts back to back and finished off with the 7 minute yoga bonus. In fact, that leads me to the one negative about this DVD. Workout #1 doesn’t have a stretch! Workout #2 does. That doesn’t make a lot of sense to me. The title of this series is 30 Minutes to Fitness and these workouts are already longer than Kelly’s workouts usually are, so making you go to the 7 minute Yoga bonus to get stretched out is pushing Workout #1 way past 30 minutes. But other than that I really enjoyed these workouts (and since I almost always do her strength workouts back to back, the lack of stretch at the end of Workout #1 doesn’t really bother me, but it is a negative for anyone who actually does them as 30 minute workouts).
Kelly tells you to have 3 sets of weights: light, medium and heavy. She did not share the poundage of hers. I had 7, 8, 12, 15 and 20 pound dumbbells (I note the weights I used below in the break down). The warm up is listed separately, so, at least for the main workouts, you choose the warm up, then it brings you back out to the menu to choose which workout you want. The warm up is 4 minutes long. Now, these are endurance workouts, so you are doing a lot of reps; however, they are set up in a way that makes it more bearable. For each muscle group you do 2 exercises. You do 8 reps of each exercise and you keep alternating between the two exercises, 8 reps each time. You will do a minimum of 3 sets of each exercise and a maximum of 5 sets of each exercise–so choose your weights wisely. It can seem too light at the beginning but by the 4th and 5th set you are dying. In fact, I had to go through this workout once before I could choose the proper weights. The second time through I got a better workout because I had the perfect weight for me.
There is a 7 minute Yoga/Stretch bonus that is listed separately on the main menu and added in to one of the premixes. I’m not going to break the yoga down because it is all very basic, yoga stretching–down dog, chair, etc.
The premixes are awesome. You can do these workouts in all kinds of ways and I plan to eventually sample them all. At the time of posting this review I’ve done the main workouts once and the premixes with cardio recoveries once, as well as the Yoga/Stretch once. I love them all. The cardio recoveries in Your Best Body are much more intense than the cardio recoveries in Weights. Also, the cardio recoveries in Workout #2 are more intense than the cardio recoveries in Workout #1. I will list the cardio recoveries below. They are used in other premixes as well. You can do all of the upper body work with cardio recoveries in one premix and all of the lower body moves with cardio recoveries in another premix. In fact, you could make this into a nice split session workout if you want, doing the Upper Body & Cardio premix one day (56 minutes) and the Lower Body & Cardio premix another day (37 minutes), then, to round out your lower body day into an hour long workout, tack on another premix: Core & Yoga (22 minutes) for a total of 59 minutes. As you can see, there are all kinds of ways to use these awesome workouts!
***5/6/14 Update: This week I did the afore mentioned premixes; on Monday I did Upper Body & Cardio and on Tuesday I did Lower Body & Cardio + Core & Yoga. I really liked all of the premixes but there are some things I want to note about them. First, as you would expect, you are alternating the strength moves with the cardio intervals. After the warm up, the workouts start with cardio rather than strength. There are 10 Upper Body strength combos and she uses all of them (including the supermans at the very end of Workout #2) but there are only 8 cardio intervals. So the final 2 “cardios” are actually two of the standing core intervals. Now, for the lower body premix she does it a little differently. There are 10 lower body strength moves but she only uses 8 of them alternated with the 8 cardios. The last two lower body strength moves in Workout #2 are omitted. So the Lower Body & Cardio premix only has 8 lower body strength excerises and 8 cardio intervals. And finally, Core & Yoga starts with the warm up, does all the standing core intervals plus both plank intervals and ends with the yoga bonus. Now, if you come to Core & Yoga after doing Lower Body & Cardio like I did, you can just skip the warm up and save 4 minutes.
Workout #1 is 30:30 minutes long with no warm up or stretch; if you add on the warm up it is 34:30 minutes long.
Back: row with reverse grip and reverse pec deck, 5 sets (12# DBs)
Legs: deadlift followed by Russian squat (25# DBs)
Active recovery/core: genie squat and twist
Shoulders: reverse grip lateral raise and alternating front raise, 3 sets (8# DBs)
Legs: single leg squat (20# DBs)
Active recovery/core: stationary lunge with reach and pull
Biceps: half curls and alternating hammer curls, 5 sets (12# DBs)
Legs: pull through plie (20# DB)
Active recovery/core: plank with knee pull
Triceps: triceps kickbacks and cross behind back, 3 sets (7# DBs)
Legs: side lunges (15# DBs)
Active recovery/core: twist with knee lift
Chest: alternating chest cross and elbow squeeze pec dec, 4 sets (15# DBs)
Legs: plie squats (30# DBs)
Workout #2 is 33:30 minutes long with no warm up; if you add on the warm up it is 37:30 minutes long, training time is 31 minutes and stretch is 2:30
Back: back v-row and high pull, 5 sets (12# DBs)
Legs: front lunge with static lunge (15# DBs)
Active recovery/core: bobbing squat
Shoulders: cheer press and lateral raise, 5 sets (8# DBs)
Legs: single leg deadlift (15# DBs)
Active recovery/core: static lunge with elbow twist to knee
Biceps: alternating long curl and side curl, 3 sets (12# DBs)
Legs: squats (20# DBs)
Active recovery/core: plank with side leg extension
Triceps: overhead extension and alternating kickbacks, 4 sets (10# DBs)
Leg: curtsey with reverse lunge (15# DBs)
Active recovery/core: broomstick twist
Lay on floor
Chest: alternating flys and chest press, 5 sets (15# DBs)
Legs: single leg bridge (15# DBs)
Active recovery/low back: supermans
1. Jogs and puddle jumps
2. Side jacks and side kicks
3. Straight jump and “little” air jakcs
4. Triple knees to single knees
5. Jump rope variations
6. Crescent kicks and frog jumps
7. Split jumps and lateral skaters
8. 4 jumping jacks and 4 quarter turn jumps
Premixes (All premixes contain the warm up and stretch; except any Workout #1 premix–it still has no stretch at the end):
Workout One with Cardio Rests (37:18)
Workout Two with Cardio Rests (39:38)
Workout One with No Rests (30:04)
Workout Two with No Rests (32:49)
Workout One – No Legs (27:09)
Workout Two – No Legs (27:50)
All Legs and Core (34:55)
Cardio and Legs (37:13)
Cardio and Upper Body (56:15)
Core and Yoga (21:51)