A couple years ago, I bought a Jillian Michaels DVD at Target: 30-Day Shred. A friend had recommended it to a running group as a good cross-training workout and I was game to check it out. Holy hell, was it hard. My heart was racing, I was sweating buckets, and short of breath within minutes. I just need a quick break, I remember thinking. Jillian Michaels barked back, reading my mind, If you want to get fit in 30 days, you have to work hard for every second of the workout.
It’s a funny shift from my usual workouts, which are generally comprised of long, slow runs. I used to joke about marathons and my long run pace, that I didn’t like to make myself uncomfortable. Run for four or four and a half hours? Sure, as long as I didn’t have to run fast. 800s on the track are, for me, sheer torture. Let me plod and I’ll plod a helluva long time.
I’ve thought about the former Biggest Loser trainer’s tough love over and over again in the last four weeks as I bust out circuit workouts for the Bikini Body Guide. And by “bust out” I still mean heart racing, sweating buckets, short of breath as I mention thanks to Ms. Michaels up top. Monday I must have done nearly two hundred lunges and definitely spent a good portion of my 28-minute workout jumping, or skipping if you count the kind with a jump rope. If you want the short workout, you better push hard. This morning, for the abs and arms circuit, it was pushing through straight-leg jack knifes and every push-up variety imaginable. It was praying the next set was bent-leg sit-ups or tricep dips and not more of those godforsaken mountain climber push-ups. It was hard — really hard, actually — but then it was over. And quickly.
Suffice it to say, I’m loving Kayla Itsines and her damn Bikini Body Guide. One more circuit workout (Full body. Good lord.) and I’ll have completed four weeks. I’ll also be due to take a progress pic selfie, which will definitely make me want to cry until I realize my jeans feel looser and my arms might be getting just a tiny bit toned. But I’ll think about crying.
P.S. Remember when I lamented the fact that I was signing up for a fitness program called Bikini Body Guide? Turns out I was on to something because in a recent interview with Cosmopolitan magazine, Kayla is quoted as saying, If there’s one thing I regret, it’s calling my guides ‘Bikini Body.’ I hear you, girl. I hear you.