No More Trouble Zones

jmnmtzI have had this workout a very long time. I have done it before, too, but oddly, I remembered very little about it. It has been that long since I did it. I probably purchased it as soon as it was released in 2009, did it a few times and for some reason moved on. I did get hit head on by a drunk driver mid-2009 and spent months in the hospital then didn’t walk for several more months, then rehab… maybe that’s why? Anyway, lately I have been having Jillian Michaels nostalgia and revisiting a lot of her workouts. And loving them as much as always. Someone recently asked me about this workout and I wondered why I never returned to it. It’s as if my eyes pass over it when perusing my Jillian workouts. So I finally pulled it out again!

No More Trouble Zones might be the only pure strength training workout Jillian Michaels has created. It is made up of circuits that focus on specific muscle groups. Also unlike any other Jillian Michaels workout I am familiar with–it is chaptered! So you can do the whole workout or go in and select the circuit(s) you want to do. However–no premixes. Even though this workout does differ from most of her other workouts, it also has similarities. First, it is fast paced circuit work, so even though it contains none of her normal cardio bursts, your heart rate still gets up there. But, just like any other workout that uses weights, the intensity of the workout depends on your weight selection. This can be a fairly intense metabolic workout with some excellent total body strength training if you choose heavy enough weights. Just like all of Jillian’s other workouts, the weights used are absurd–especially for a straight strength training workout. Three pounds. That is what Jillian and her two exercisers used for every single exercise. WTF? She even comments on how light her weights are during the bicep circuit. She says she can curl 20 pound dumbbells but not for 5 minutes straight. Uhm… so that means your only recourse is to resort to 3 pound dumbbells? I used 12-20 pound dumbbells for the entire 5 minute biceps segment. So why couldn’t she challenge herself, thereby demonstrating for the home exerciser what it actually means to challenge yourself? This is a high rep/endurance level workout, but still–3 pounds?!?! For anyone doing this workout, listed below are the weights I actually used. I did every rep and didn’t pause the DVD once. If I could make it through with no problems using heavier than 3 pound dumbbells for every single exercise (5-20 pound dumbbells)–then why couldn’t she? However, if you are a beginner–then 3 pound dumbbells is probably what you should use because with heavier dumbbells it does get pretty intense.

So another excellent Jillian Michaels workout–if you use heavy enough weights. And it is unique for Jillian. I am surprised I have not returned to this workout until now.

No More Trouble Zones is 55 minutes long; 5 minute warm up and 5 minute cool down (technically it is 57 minutes long but the last 2 minutes is Jillian talking and the credits).

Circuit #1 Shoulders & Legs:

  1. Squat w/ overhead shoulder press, 15# DBs
  2. Reverse lunge w/ straight arm lateral raise, 5# DBs
  3. Chair squats w/ anterior raises (straight arm front raises), 5# DBs
  4. Press outs (start w/ DBs at chest level, palms facing ceiling; press DBs straight out until arms are straight then bring DBs back to chest), 5# DBs
  5. Repeat #1-4

Circuit #2 Chest & Abs:

  1. Chest press w/ crunch, 20# DBs
  2. Lay flat on back, legs straight and raised a few inches off floor, arms/DBs out wide in a “T” and head/neck raised; chest fly w/ straight leg raises, 20# DBs
  3. Bicycle crunches
  4. Squirms (lay on back, knees bent, feet on floor, arms are at side w/ palms facing opposing walls; reach one hand down between bottom and calf, tapping inside of ankle; alternate sides w/ reach)
  5. Push ups
  6. Repeat #1-5

Circuit #3 Biceps & Butt:

  1. Deadlifts w/ hammer curls, 20# DBs
  2. Static squat w/ concentration curls, one 17.5# DB
  3. Front lunges w/ wide “W” curls, 12# DBs
  4. Alternating side lunges w/ bicep curl, 12# DBs
  5. Repeat #1-4

Circuit #4 Thighs & Triceps:

  1. Tricep kickbacks in narrow squat, 10# DBs
  2. Sumo squats w/ overhead tricep extensions, 10# DBs
  3. Surrenders while holding DBs overhead, 8# DBs
  4. Straight arm DB press backs while in crescent lunge, 8# DBs
  5. Repeat #1-4

Circuit #5 Core:

  1. Double crunch
  2. Twisting plank (straight arm plank; bring knee under body to opposite elbow; alternate sides)
  3. Toe taps in plank (straight arm plank; swing leg out to side and tap floor w/ toe then bring back in)
  4. Windshield wipers (lay on back, arms held straight overhead in a V; raise straight legs toward one hand and lower, raise legs toward other hand and lower; keep alternating)
  5. Repeat #1-4

Circuit #6 Upper Body & Core:

  1. Renegade rows, 20# DBs
  2. Supermans
  3. Hollow man w/ scissor kicks
  4. One leg pelvic thrusts (hip lifts w/ one leg crossed over other knee) (I also place a 20# DB on my hips)
  5. Repeat #1-4

Circuit #7 Lower Body & Core: (I wore 2.5# ankle weights for all of these exercises)

  1. Hip raises in elbow side plank
  2. Laying on side, bring top leg out straight in front of you; raise and lower top leg
  3. Inner thigh raises (still laying on side, bend top leg and place foot on floor in front of you; raise and lower straight bottom leg)
  4. Repeat #1-3 on other side of body
  5. Donkey kicks (get on hands and knees; bring one knee into chest then kick flexed foot out straight behind you)
  6. Round kicks (still on hands and knees; raise leg w/ knee bent (hydrant) then kick leg out in this position, bend knee again and lower)


9 thoughts on “No More Trouble Zones

  1. I saw this dvd on sale for $7 so I tried it out–whew! I thought maybe I had worked my way up to intermediate exerciser, but after this, I see I am still in the beginner zone! But even I managed 5-8# weights in most of the circuits.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. That is a tough workout if you are challenging yourself with heavy enough weights. It is a pretty great workout, isn’t it? I love getting cardio with my strength and this workout works you hard!


  2. I had no idea that this was a strength workout! For some reason I thought it was cardio–must be getting it mixed up with something else. Anyways, I’ll have to check it out. Thanks for the review and Merry Christmas! (P.S. Can’t wait to hear what new DVD’s you get for Christmas and what you’ll be reviewing next!!). All the best in 2017.


    1. Thank you! I hope you had a great Christmas! Jillian came out with a pure cardio workout at the same time as this workout: Banish Fat Boost Metabolism. That might be what you are thinking of. Those two workouts work really well together. Her regular workouts almost always have a cardio component so this one is unusual for her.


      1. Yes, you are right! Good suggestion, I will maybe try combining these two DVD’s into a rotation. Take care and thank you.


    1. I wonder why? Cathe tends to have higher impact plyometrics than Jillian. I don’t have knee problems so I have never experienced that. I like them both a lot. Cathe is my absolute favorite but Jillian’s workouts are excellent, too. They each have their own niche. Jillian’s are always metabolic and aimed at fat loss. Cathe focuses more on muscle building–which has always been my preference anyway!


    1. I honestly do not know why I have avoided returning to this workout for so many years. I have revisited all of her others than I own and bought more. I really like it. I will be doing it again.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s