Barlates: Torch & Tone/Cardio Sculpt

Torch & Tone: Cardio Sculpt is a kind of unusual workout. Maybe not for Linda @ Barlates, since she does put together some unusual workouts, but I found it rather unusual. It is effective tho. No doubt about that. I had muscle burn out multiple times. This is one of Linda’s longer workouts, clocking in at 62:30 minutes (tho the back of my DVD case says it is 57 minutes, as does the Amazon description). For the first 36 minutes of the workout you are doing weighted boxing drills. Linda says this is for toning the arms and she is using very light hand weights. I wore 1 pound weighted gloves and also held 2 pound hand weights. However, during some of the drills, I had to drop the hand weights because they were causing some serious arm burn out. The 1 pound gloves were enough. I would estimate I used 3 pounds (gloves + weights) for 80% of the boxing drills. There are some kicks, too, but the majority of it is cardio boxing drills. Next you move into arm and shoulder work still using the light hand weights. I removed my weighted gloves for this because the 2 pound hand weights were plenty. These are high rep moves and they really burned my arms out. Next you go to the mat for some outer thigh work. You hold an 8 pound dumbbell on your outer thigh when doing the exercises and OMG–the excruciating burn out. By the end I had to lose the weight and even without the dumbbell it was frying my outer thigh. When we move to the other leg, the leg she had just brutalized was still in in excruciating pain and affecting my ability to work the other side effectively. In the future, I should probably use a lighter weight. Maybe 5 pounds, or 2 pound ankle weights. All I know is it hurt. After you finish working the outer thigh, Linda has you stretch it–and I couldn’t! It was in so much pain I could not get it into the stretch position! By the final stretch at the very end of the workout my legs were thawed out sufficiently that I was able to stretch just fine but immediately after finishing the exercises–no way. The workout ends with some very tough core work in which she has your legs elevated and you are pushing against them. This after she just tore your legs up! Not fun!

Overall a tough burnout work. I have to comment on impact. The first 36 minutes of the workout is cardio kickboxing and in the beginning it is low impact. During the early part of the workout Linda says several times that this is a low impact workout. Then she starts doing some little hops. Then she throws jumping into it. She does show low impact modifications but I just thought it was interesting that she repeatedly said early on it was a low impact workout then she starts doing plyo. And it seemed to make her happy. She was smiling when she was jumping.

This workout is available for free on YouTube but I purchased the DVD which contains 3 additional workouts in her Torch & Tone series. You can also purchase the download from Linda via her website.

Torch & Tone: Cardio Sculpt is 62:30 minutes; 1 minute intro, 3:30 minute warm up and 5:30 minute stretch. Equipment: light dumbbells (Linda is using 1 pound dumbbells) and one heavier dumbbell (Linda is using an 8 pound dumbbell). As mentioned above, I wore weighted gloves for the cardio kickboxing portion and also held 2 pound hand weights.

The workout starts with 36:30 minutes of cardio kickboxing holding the light DBs (this time includes the warm up). For the next minute you will shift side to side while your arms flow side to side as a sort of cool down.

  1. Still holding the light DBs, stand with legs in warrior stance and flow from right angle into reverse warrior (Linda calls it cartwheeling side to side)
  2. Stand normally and extend arms/DBs out to side then flow them in front of you, bending elbows then flowing arms back out to side (she calls them swan arms)
  3. With palms/DBs facing ceiling and arms extended in front of you, bicycle your arms in towards the body (flowing alternating bicep curls); reverse the bicycle movement
  4. Extend arms straight in front of you, palms/DBs facing the ceiling and bend elbows, bringing DBs toward shoulders then extending arms straight again
  5. Extend arms out to side in a T, palms/DBs facing ceiling and elbows slightly bent, scoop arms down as you bringing arms toward each other then scoop them back out to start (scooping chest press)
  6. Extend arms out to side again, palms/DBs still facing ceiling and pull elbows behind you but close to the ribs then push arms back out in a small pulsing movement, while also doing a narrow, shallow squat pulse
  7. Do one rep of #6 then rotate arms so palms face the back of room and push arms up and out to T, alternate between #6 & #7; hold in 37 position isometrically
  8. Flow arms/DBs side to side, bringing DBs behind you as you do it (recovery move)
  9. (set light DBs aside and get heavier DB) Lay on side, resting on one elbow, bottom leg bent and top leg extended straight, place DB on top of top thigh, raise and lower top straight leg
  10. Same position as #9 but bring leg forward in front of you with knee bent (DB still on thigh), raise and lower bent leg (forward hydrant); changes to bringing knee into chest then pushing leg out straight
  11. Same starting position as #9, but bring straight leg behind you (DB still on thigh), raise and lower straight leg in this position; hold leg isometrically at top of lift
  12. Repeat #9-11 on other leg
  13. (set DB aside) Lay on back, knees bent and feet raised off floor, place palms on tops of thighs and push against thighs and hold this position isometrically; lift head/shoulder off ground and alternate extending one leg straight then bringing back in so thigh is against palm; changes to pushing both legs out straight at the same time then bringing them back so thighs are against palms; extend both legs straight w/ feet reaching toward ceiling (palms still pressing against thighs), lower both straight legs until heels tap the floor then raise legs back so thighs are against hands (throughout all of these moves, when your palms are against your thighs, they are pressing against each other with resistence)

For more info on Barlates and other (free) streaming workouts I’ve sampled and reviewed, check out my Streaming page.


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