The Workout: Squeeze Stronger
The Rating: A+
What It Is: Celebrity trainer Tracy Effinger, who’s clients include Private Practice star (and mother of two) Amy Brenneman (shown above) and House actress Sela Ward, is a fitness veteran. Her original workout Squeeze became an extreme hit amongst fitness video junkies (and a Makeover Momma personal favorite), but her latest installment Squeeze Stronger is even better.
What You Do: The Squeeze workout is based around using small, specific movements to target all areas of the body, without heavy weights or complicated equipment. For example, the multiple arm exercisesÂ require only 2 to 3 pound weights (which slim mother Gwyneth Paltrow never exceeds to keep her arms lean and toned).
Â Â Â The exercisesÂ were created to tone and lengthen the body,Â with movement influenced byÂ dance floorwork or Pilate’s mat exercises. However, don’t underestimate this latest installation to the Squeeze program. Even though the exercises are low-impact, occasionally done on the floor and seem to be using small, distinct movements…they are like Pilate’s or ballet training on Ritalin.
How It Feels:
Â We remembered how extremely difficult the first Squeeze DVD proved to be, and decided to start off slowly. Squeeze Stronger features an “Upper Body and Waist Squeeze” segment and “Lower Body and Abs Squeeze”,Â as well as aÂ huge inventory ofÂ every exercises so you can pick and choose individual combinations. This is ideal for mothers who are far too busy to follow 45 minute routines, and would rather fit in bits of strength training throughout the day. We were able to do a Arm, Waist, Leg and Ab exercise in about 10 minutes (while our kids played happily nearby), and were covered in sweat by the end (literally, don’t underestimate). Although we swear the burning in our mucles from leg work and squating (similiar to at a ballet barre)Â gave us labor flashbacks, we couldn’t help but feel powerful and “hard core” throughout each motion.
Make It Harder:
Â Â Squeeze Stronger is shockingly difficult and challenging (this is not our mothers’ exercise video), so there is little anyone will need to do to make it harder (unless you’re part Android or part Madonna). The exercises can be made easier by taking breaks,Â skipping theÂ weights or simply pausing throughout,Â although each routine has a tendency to feel harder and hurt more with every try (as you learn to do the exercises properly and target the right muscles).Â Although we could barely walk the next day after tryingÂ the exercises, we loved how fun, approachable and fast each movementÂ was, while fitting into a hectic motherhood schedule (we swear our thighs look better each day!)
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