Monday, September 9, 2013

Star Trainers: Cardio (Review)

I stumbled upon Star Trainers: Cardio (2007) because I had found several workouts by Kimberly Spreen that I enjoyed.  This turned out to be a great buy; I've used this video consistently for several years now. 

There are 5 "star" trainers and each leads you through a thirty minute cardio workout.  Some are good, some not, some great.  Here is a review of each workout, ranked from easiest to hardest.
Gay Gasper's cardio is mostly low-impact.  This is a great place to start and a good way to get your heart rate up if you are a beginner.  Some of the choreography is a bit confusing.  I really don't understand why they try to make their moves so bloody complicated.  But I'm sure anyone can get the hang of this after a few tries.  This workout reminds me of old-school aerobics. Beginner.

Rob Glick's workout is also primarily low-impact.  Like Gasper's cardio, this is a good place to start.  I would say, however, that Glick's choreography is more convoluted than Gasper's, especially for a beginner.  All I can say is that there are great instructors....but most of them are just mediocre.  Beginner.

Kendell Hogan provides a great workout that includes both low and high impact moves.  He builds a routine with you and by the end of the workout, you're expected to do the routine three times in a row.  This definitely gets your heart rate up!  In this workout you'll run, do jacks, and lunges.  This is the workout I suggest you do first on this video.  Beginner.

Kimberley Spreen works you through a series of "bursts" - you slowly ramp up to a high-impact move.  This is not nearly as difficult as Michelle Dozois' Peak 10 series but it's still a challenge for a beginner.  The last ten minutes are the toughest with almost non-stop cardio.  Your only break is a series of kicks.  Kimberly is so easy to follow; you'll like her!  Beginner-Intermediate.

Violet Zaki is a martial artist so her workout is definitely the toughest.  It gets progressively harder as you go along.  You'll start with punches and end with a series of moves that has you lunging, squatting, and touching the floor.  Ouch!  You'll really feel your bum the next day.  And Zaki loves squats, so be prepared to do many of them!  You'll also do a cheater burpee and push-ups.  Zaki is so cute and her Australian accent is fun to listen to - she's one of my faves.  This is the only workout on the video that is most definitely an intermediate workout.  All the squats and lunges - wow!

I used to do this video once or twice a week, alternating the workout (only Hogan's, Spreen's, and Zaki's).  Even though I've gotten more advanced in my workouts, I'll still do this now and then when I need some cardio.  This video was a great investment!  For a clip, go here.

Bottom Line: If you're a beginner and in need of short cardio workouts, this is for you.  You will build stamina and get better and better as you work through the harder workouts here.  I highly recommend this!

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