For those of you that aren't familiar with this, I'll explain: it is an intense circuit training programme that you can pick up very cheaply on DVD and do in the comfort of your own home. That is probably a good thing because no-one is there to see you sweat like a pig and cry out in pain like a banshee! I'm half joking there. I say half because the workout is instructed by The Biggest Loser's Jillian Michaels, who is to put in nicely, a real task-master!
The reason why I like this programme is that it only takes 25 minutes and the results come quick compared to less strenuous workouts. The reason for this is the fact that you don't stop: Jillian makes sure of it! She is joined by her two Amazonian assistants to get you doing quick, high-intensity bursts of strength training (you need a set of resistance weights), cardio and abs. By the end you are perspiring from places you never thought possible and the next morning, you feel like you've run a marathon.
The programme consists of three levels which build up in difficulty. Last Summer I got to the end of the programme and although I didn't see drastic results in myself, others commented on how trim I was looking which can't be a bad thing; we're always our own worst critics.
Right now I'm on level one and already feel much fitter. Overall, I highly recommend the 30 Day Shred for a kick start into feeling more body confident. Whether it's sustainable long term with a busy schedule is questionable. In an ideal world 25 minutes out of your day is nothing, but we shall see whether I continue with it after the hols! For now, it is great for shedding some of the pounds gained after a year of not getting much exercise. Maintaining results is certainly possible with an active lifestyle and a balanced diet. For me, that is the ultimate long-term goal.