I’m always wary of workout programs that offer more results with less effort. Turns out, in this case, less effort doesn’t mean less exercise, just less of a time commitment, which I can get behind.
The FIRM has been a trusted name in exercise and fitness for years, with workouts designed to empower women to work towards their best bodies and achieve total body fitness in the comfort of their very own home.
The FIRM has introduced a new workout series called The FIRM Express, which takes their successful fitness philosophy and condenses it down into three times weekly 20 minute workouts that promise to get you “thin in 30” days. Like all of the workouts by The FIRM, this program combines effective cardio exercises with weight training to get results faster and help you burn more fat than traditional cardio or weight lifting alone.
This 12 DVD program includes 12 workouts you will use through four different cycles that are specifically sequenced to optimize weight loss. The FIRM Express boasts that you can burn up to nine times more fat with this program than traditional workouts.
This may sound too good to be true, as The FIRM Express falls far below the recommended minimum of 30 minutes of cardiovascular exercise 4-5 times a week. However, duration is never the main issue with exercise, it’s intensity, and if you stick it out, I promise you, the intensity is there.
The FIRM Express Program Overview
Each of the 4 cycles lasts a week, and consists of one sculpting DVD for muscular strength, endurance and to build muscle tone, one cardio DVD to blast fat and calories, and one combo sculpt and cardio DVD for a good dose of both.
There are a few extras included with the program, including a 4-Day Kickstart Plan to get you “thinner by Monday” (assuming you start on Friday, of course) with anti-bloating tips, more simplistic but still yummy meals, and a 4 day fitness journal, and a bonus DVD titled Kickstart Your Metabolism with Pump It Up! and Shortcut to Flat Abs workouts which are even more condensed workouts than the Express DVDs, for when you are really short on time.
For a more detailed breakdown of each The FIRM Express cycle and DVD, check out our review here.
The FIRM Express comes with a small pamphlet that includes the FIRM Express Fat-Burning Meal Plan, which comes with breakfast, lunch, dinner and snack recipes you can choose from. Calorie ranges for your total daily intake are given based on your starting weight, but no guidance is given on choosing meals and snacks outside of the meal plan, so if you are, you know, a real person that goes out with friends of family or needs to grab something on the run, you are on your own.
Can the FIRM Express Deliver?
While the workouts are intense and quick, a pretty good combination when it comes to exercise, there were a few drawbacks to the program.
A lot of the Express workouts are hard to keep up with, especially the cardio and sculpt combination DVDs, which move so quickly, change so rapidly and the movements are so complicated that you’ll spend most of you time trying to get the hang of it, just to have the instructor move onto something else. Since you only do each DVD once, which seems silly for the price tag of 3 payments of $29.99, you won’t even have a second chance to take a stab at the choreography, so my advice is to just keep moving, even if what you are doing looks nothing like what is happening on the screen.
You will also need dumbbells in a range of 8-15 pounds for certain workouts, which adds to the already pricey program.
I was a bit skeptical of a program that promises extreme results with just three 20 minute workouts a week, but if you follow the program and stick to the meal plan, you will definitely be thin-NER in 30.
To try The FIRM Express Thin in 30 program, click here!
Giveaway Ended 8/31/11. Winner: Erin
***GIVEAWAY: You could win The Firm Express from DietsInReview.com.***
1) Leave a comment below telling us how you optimize your workouts when pressed for time.
2) One winner will be drawn on August 31, 2011 and notified via the email address provided in the contact form.