Body Revolution

Ever since I mentioned that I received Jillian Michaels’ Body Revolution for Christmas, I have gotten a few questions about how I’m liking it and if I’d recommend it.

In a word, YES!


I love it.  I love what she has done to take my fitness to the next level (which wasn’t a major step since I was still barely making my way back into the scene after having P).  In all honesty, I’m surprised at how much better this workout program is than her other DVDs, because I looooove her other ones so much and felt like I’d reached the end as far as her difficulty level goes.  Sure, I have been known to "phone it in" a number of times, but I also do the more advanced tweaks and rarely got sore afterwards.  I didn’t realize how much I missed that day after burn!

Regular readers know I adore Jillian and own almost all her workout DVDs.  They are the perfect tool for those winter months when you’re trapped indoors with a little one. 

As much as I like long runs, I can definitely appreciate the time crunch when it comes to life (with or without kids – we all have crap to get done), so squeezing in a REAL workout session in 30 minutes is a huge deal.

These workouts are the real deal.  They make me sweat.  They make me sore.  They make me strong.  I won’t post a photo of my abs because that’s obnoxious (I’ve done it before and since regretted it), so you’ll have to trust me when I tell you they are legit.  My arms and core are super strong too.  Stronger than they’ve ever been I think (and for sure stronger than I thought possible for such limited exercise time).

For those interested in knowing more about the DVDs, there are 3 levels – and each level has 4 strength workouts and 1 cardio workout.

Each strength workout is ~30 minutes while the cardio ones are somewhat shorter (~25 minutes).  You need weights, a resistance cable, and a mat for the strength training sessions (and enough room to put a mat on the floor).

There’s a program telling you when to do what but I don’t follow it (there’s also an eating plan which I don’t follow).  I basically do 4 strength training workouts each week + 1 cardio workout + 1 run outside (weather permitting).  Sometimes I mix it up and throw in a yoga session or if the weather is especially nice I’ll do more outside walks/runs, but for the most part I’ve been doing her Body Revolution exclusively since December and I haven’t even gotten to the 3rd level yet.  Truthfully, I’m scared about what’s coming.

There are descriptions of the workouts, including the focus muscle groups, so you can target different areas and not burn out one part of the body by doing the same muscles in back to back workouts.  I especially like this because then when my biceps are super sore I can do a workout that focuses on the back of the legs.  And then the next day when I can’t squat because I’m in agony, I can go back to pushing my arms to the limit.  I’ve never been one to pay attention to this kind of thing, but it’s cool to get a full body workout without doing the planning yourself.  Basically Jillian is your personal (bad ass) trainer and she’s letting you decide how much you want to kill yourself.


And I’m a glutton for punishment.  πŸ™‚

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Comments (40)

  1. leslie

    Thanks for the review! I picked up the set when it was an Amazon “Daily Deal” but was training for a 5K so haven’t started it yet.

  2. Beth

    I detest Jillian Michaels and her influence in continuing to pass along and encourage women that they have to lose weight and fit a certain image to be accepted by themselves and society. She is helping to increase the incidences of eating disorders, unhealthy calorie intake and obsessive exercising on her show “Biggest Loser”. I was appalled, along with a great number of people, on this years winner’s dramatic weight loss to only 105 pounds at her current height. I know the DVD will not effect your body image or food intake as you have a healthy outlook on both. But for the vulnerable ones, I would encourage them to stay away from anything this woman does or says. The more attention and money she earns from her weight loss message and promotion, the more and more people she is helping to hate themselves, create unacceptance of the body God has given them, and increase the amount of dangerous eating disorders amongst us all. Just my two cents, but I felt an obligation to share them.

    Again, I know you don’t have a distorted body image and that you don’t fight against dieting and eat freely and that is one of the things that first drew me to your blog….but Jillian Michaels does not, IMHO. You can delete this if you want, Elise. I am not judging you at all. Please know that. But coming from someone who struggles with body image and an ED everyday, Jillian Michaels is a dangerous person. I would rather look to other people for help in healthy living and exercise. Thanks for listening. I hope others feel free to focus on this post and not comment on my personal opinions so that this becomes a debate on whether or not my thoughts should be know.

  3. Kathleen

    I am not trying to defend Michaels because I don’t like how she pushes certain products I don’t think are healthy but I am not sure your characterization is accurate. She actually has a very healthy figure, not emaciated at all and she has said that she thought the winner lost too much weight. Her dvds are good for people who have busy lives and limited time.

  4. Beth

    maybe my post should be deleted. I don’t want Elise’s blog to turn into a debate about JM.

  5. Aimee

    Yeah maybe it should be deleted because I wasn’t going to reply but I feel like this needs to be said…

    Jillian is not a monster. She even said she was stunned when she saw Rachel, the winner of The Biggest Loser, and she thought she had lost too much weight. Jillian promotes a healthy lifestyle and her exercise and diet plans are certainly not meant to, as you said, “help people hate themselves, create unacceptance of the body God has given them, and increase the amount of dangerous eating disorders amongst us all.” It seems to me, IMHO, you may be displacing the blame for this unfortunate culture of “body hating” on Jillian.

  6. Beth

    I meant every word I said and I am not ashamed of my post. It’s my opinion just as you have yours. She is a very controversial person in society for sure. I stick by my post. I hope my post is not deleted and that people can focus on giving comments to Elise and not me. It’s her blog.

  7. k

    Aw why do u regret it? That’s less than you’d see on a beach lol

  8. Abby

    I like Jillian and think she’s one of the more positive fitness role models out there, and I’m skeptical of most of them. I have a few of her DVDs and think you get out of them what you put into them. While I like the gym, I like knowing I can do something at home in like, 30 minutes some days.

    With that said, I can’t afford the Body Revolution DVDs, so that’s a bummer. But it’s nice to know they’re worth it for you!

  9. Dana @ Vanishing Veggie

    I love Body Revolution! Those burpies are no joke! I really need to get back on the Jillian wagon and add it to my strength training routine.

    Also, I saw some of your comments that said they’re a little pricey. They’re TOTALLY worth it, and you can pay in installments from her website.

    Be proud of your abs!! πŸ™‚

  10. Ozlem

    Beth did not say she was a monster. I appreciate everyone’s opinions equally. This is a blog and we are all readers and we should not intimidate one another.

    I have no opinion on JM but I checked out these DVDs in my library and sadly they don’t have them I will try the ones they have. Thanks for the recommendation.

  11. L

    She kind of made her sound like a monster

  12. Aimee

    You’re right, and we’re all entitled to our own opinions. I wasn’t trying to intimidate anyone or fuel the debate Beth did not intend to create. I’m sorry if it came across that way. I really should’t have replied to her post. It was not my place.
    Anyway, if they have her yoga DVD at your library it’s definitely worth a try! I think there are even a few videos on youtube too.

  13. Ozlem

    Thanks Aimee! Yes! they had her yoga DVD and I am checking it out. I appreciate your response and recommendation!
    On a separate note it can be difficult to communicate via the web e mail etc. Open to misunderstandings no tone and gestures etc. So my apologies too. Thanks again! Take care.

  14. Melinda

    How heavy are the weights people use with the DVD’s? I can’t find any recommendations or where to start.

  15. anne

    It’s awesome that u get your workout it when u can at home! It takes major motivation. I was a devout gym goer then got a spin bike and haven’t looked back- it’s my favorite morning workout routine now. I only go to my yoga studio now..

  16. Yalanda

    I have noted your love for Jillian for the years I’ve been following you. I have also chosen to ignore the praises you’ve sung for some reason. I’ve never been a fan of ‘at home’ workouts. Maybe because I felt I was ‘phoning it in’! One day a few months ago, I was searching for a free P90X yoga day routine on youtube because I didn’t want to try to find my husbands DVD. I wasn’t able to find one on youtube so, I grudgingly ‘settled’ on Jillian’s Yoga Meltdown Level 1. Little did I know that I would fall absolutely in LOVE with her workouts. Since that day, I have sought out all of her free routines online and I have also purchased others that are unavailable online. I have become a hard core fan and keep kicking myself for not jumping on the bandwagon sooner! I wish I had taken your advice sooner, but I am so glad I finally gave her a try! My body is definitely thanking me!

  17. sarah

    Wahey I love when you talk fitness!
    Working out & exercise is my main passion, & I’m super nosy as to what others are doing in this area of their life. Especially you. I’ve aaalways admired & envied your lovely figure, ( & I’m almost 10 yrs your junior!).
    And I remember your abs selfie – OWN IT , don’t regret it . Trust :D.

  18. Michelle Beckhamm

    I looove Jillian and have been using her DVDs for almost 5 1/2 years. Each time a new one comes out, I get so excited! I consider her “my cheap personal trainer.” I think she is thee best! Glad someone else is as obsessed as I am. Lol!

  19. Ashley @ My Food N Fitness Diaries

    I love Jillian Michaels and am glad to hear how much you’re loving this program. The option of a short and intense workout is great when you’re in a time crunch!

  20. Ate

    i’m seriously considering this. i bet you are rockin’ your JM body in Oz.

    love you three!

  21. karen

    Random – does Jillian have a workout adapted for pregnant moms?

    I’m trying to be inspired by everyone. I used to be in great shape – soccer, rock climbing, yoga. Now I have two little ones, a third on the way and I work part time in the mornings. Life is good… but it’s tough to find time to work out. I can totally do a workout after my kids go to bed, but it’s important for us to eat dinner as a family so that means either skipping dinner with my family and eating at 9, or working out on an “after dinner” tummy (yuck). Morning workouts aren’t really an option for a number of reasons. I could probably get in 30 min in the afternoon before my pick my kids up if I really, really prioritized it. My new babe is due in July and I’ll have several months off, so I’m hoping to use that time to work out after kids go to school which is my ideal time (when I’d be at work otherwise). Maybe that will give me the long term time I need to establish a routine.

  22. Michelle

    I love Jillian’s workout programs too! I subscribed to her online program and LOVE it. I don’t follow her meal plans or anything else but having a workout set up and ready to roll for me each day is absolutely wonderful. I haven’t been past level one so I can only imagine what is in store!!! She’s one tough trainer (and I mean that in the best sense).

  23. Livi

    Sounds awesome! I love workouts that I can do easily in my apartment!

  24. Sally

    I love body revolution too, and am also as strong as I’ve ever been (I’m 40). I don’t do all the hardest tweaks yet, but I’m working on it. And I even have abs too πŸ™‚

  25. Beth

    You need to read Unlimited by JM. I recently read it and loved it. It’s more on the mind and body as a whole, rather than focused primarily on fitness, but it’s really good!!

  26. Elise (Post author)

    awesome! thanks for the rec!

  27. Elise (Post author)

    go sally!

  28. Elise (Post author)

    ditto. makes fitting them in so much easier!

  29. Elise (Post author)

    ive always wondered about her online thing because she always say the communtity is awesome (i listen to her podcasts). very cool that you have had success with it.

  30. Elise (Post author)

    first off congrats on your baby on the way!

    i cant think of any specific dvds that are for pregnant women, but i think doing the modifications for less intense workouts (or beginners) would be a decent place to start.

    its so hard to balance it all, so give yourself a pat on the back for trying to prioritize your health! sometimes its just not possible – especially with 2 little ones!! – to squeeze everything in, but i do think finding a routine is key. i never used to be a morning person, but its all ive got so i make it work. that said, im not sure how ill have to adapt that once i have more family members to work around. youre a great mama!!

  31. Elise (Post author)

    you are too sweet sarah πŸ™‚

  32. Elise (Post author)

    haha, youre funny yalanda. i was the same way too – poo-poo-ing home workouts and all about the cardio. but man has my tune changed! glad youve found success in JM as well πŸ™‚

  33. Elise (Post author)

    ive been wondering if that would be a good investment. it seems an awesome at home option, but i live in CA so im not sure i could justify it (when realistically i could probably still go for a ride outside even in the coldest winter months). but itll still stay on my radar especially now that youve given it the thumbs up!

  34. Elise (Post author)

    in the video, they all have a few different sets – i think 3, 5 and 8 lbs. she references which to use and when some of the time, but i dont think you need all those options. i use 5 pounds for everything and it seems good to me.

  35. Elise (Post author)

    theyre way $$$$ for sure, thats why i didnt get them for myself. maybe ask for them for a gift (birthday? christmas?)??

  36. Elise (Post author)

    agreed – totally worth the $$


  37. Elise (Post author)

    sorry you couldnt find them at your library ozlem πŸ™

    they are newer, so that may be why. if you search for them on youtube you may find a few. JM usually has some samples of each dvd on the internet which i find is a good way to test the waters before making the purchase.

    i havent tried a JM workout i havent liked so if your library has any of the others of hers definitely give them a shot!

  38. Elise (Post author)

    ha! true!

  39. Elise (Post author)

    you are definitely entitled to your opinion beth and i think you are wise for knowing what triggers you and what you should avoid in terms of exercise and body image role models. i think its a okay to look elsewhere!

    ps you know i dont delete comments – everyone has a voice here πŸ™‚

  40. Ozlen

    Aimee and Elise my daughter and I did yoga inferno this afternoon. Interesting concept it was a nice change we had fun!! Thanks for the recommendation we got it from the library my daughter is 7 and it was fun doing it with her.

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