Those of you who follow me on Facebook and Instagram know I absolutely love Tone It Up! To someone who doesn’t know Tone It Up, and more importantly, Karena and Kartrina, the face, heart and soul of Tone It Up!, it might seem kind of silly at first. But once you get into it, the community, the social networking, the Instagramming every workout and meal, you get sucked in pretty deep. I first found TIU when I was browsing the internet for ways to tone up. I was very chubby in the final year of school because I was studying a lot, and eating whatever I wanted. College was 3 years of yo-yoing for me. From starvation to binges, my weight went up and down over 10 kilos. I didn’t have a healthy relationship with either food or my body.
When I first went to flight school, I lost a lot of weight. After all, I was in sunny, beautiful Florida. With all of its beautiful people, I felt like I had to keep up, and that is when I shed my baby weight. How I did it? I honestly don’t remember. I was living alone, so I was in control of my groceries, and I didn’t buy any junk food. While eating out, I stuck to salads and fish. Then I met Michael. And then we both got kind of chubby together :). When you are in love, and first start dating, this is totally acceptable.
I don’t know when I went from being overly critical of my body to loving it, but I think it was just part of growing up. Now, I eat well because it makes me feel good and look good, and I work out because I want to be strong.
So if you subscribe to emails from Tone It Up! (it’s free), they send you weekly workout schedules every Sunday. This includes cardio, a lot of their free Youtube videos (with printables that you can carry to the gym) and sometimes, workouts from their DVDs. I have been doing their Youtube videos for about six months, and I felt like I needed something more challenging. So I decided to buy the digital download edition of their DVD.
In the package – When you purchase the ‘Beach Babe DVD 2 Digital Download Only‘ on their website, you instantly get an email from them. The download costs 39 USD. The email has a link, and when you click the link, it brings you to a web page with links to download nine workouts. You can download each video 5 times, and the link expires in 48 hours. I downloaded mine on my computer and then got them on my IPhone and IPad via ITunes sync. So make sure you purchase the download only when you will be able to download it within the next 48 hours, and when you have high speed internet connection. The longest video is 1.2 GB.
The nine workouts, in the order I tried them
1) HIIT the Beach 2 – This High Intensity Interval Training workout is 40 minutes long, including warm up, water breaks and cool down. It is a follow along video, so you just hit play and workout with K&K. Before you start, you need a pair of dumbbells, an exercise mat and a bottle of water. I used 3 pound dumbbells to start with. My sister, cousin and I set up our basement for this workout, and it was challenging for us. It is a very fun, upbeat workout and I burnt 335 calories in 40 minutes. If you have just started working out, this is a great workout. I have been working out regularly for over 6 months now, and I loved it. Pair it with one of their free youtube workout videos, we did three rounds of the Love Your Arms workout, for an hour long sweat session!
2) Hula Booty – This workout is 25 minutes long, including warm up, water breaks and cool down. I found this workout very relaxing. I did it after 30 minutes of cardio. This is a follow along video which includes exercises standing up and on the floor to tone and lift your booty, hips and thighs. I did this workout in my room, and I definitely felt the burn in my legs. Before you start, you need an exercise mat, dumbbells and a bottle of water. Also, your exercise area should be large enough to be able to stretch your legs out to the side. I will definitely do this workout once a week when I am working on my lower body.
3) Beach Barre – This is a 30 minute long full body workout. I’v always wanted to join a good group workout class, and on Day 3 of trying out this DVD, I have realised that this is the next best alternative. I did this workout with my sister and cousin and absolutely loved it. Every muscle I worked was burning, which is a good thing. This workout is so good to tone all your major muscle groups. I love the cool down stretching exercises at the end. For this workout too, you need an exercise mat, dumbbells and a bottle of water.
4) Sunrise Routine – This is a workout you are supposed to do first thing in the morning. It is 25 minutes long, with very calming music in the background. All you need is an exercise mat and a bottle of water. The workout incorporates a lot of yoga moves to stretch and tone. I am not very flexible so I couldn’t keep up at times. This is very good for when you are traveling and staying at hotels and don’t have time for the gym. Just hit play on your tablet or smartphone and follow along.
5) Bikini Arms – This is a 20 minute workout which focuses on toning and sculpting your arms. You can do this workout with dumbbells or without, and you need an exercise mat since the workout incorporates some floor moves. I love this workout, and pair it with either cardio or any other workout from this DVD. Arms are a major focus point for me, and this workout is great because it focuses on every part of your arms.
6) Sunkissed Abs – This is a 18 minute workout to work on your abs. You need dumbbells, an exercise mat and water before you start. I paired this with 30 minutes of cardio and the Beach Barre Routine. I love that this workout goes beyond the conventional crunches to work your lower and upper abs.
7) Sunset Stretch – By day 7 of trying this DVD, I was seriously sore. So I decided to end my workout with this 15 minute stretching workout. All the moves are yoga based and I found it very hard to keep up. It is difficult to perform the moves and look at the screen at the same time. Karena is very flexible and I found it very difficult to twist my body like hers. But by the second time that I did this workout, I was already a lot better. If you have been practising yoga, you might be better able to keep up. I still have quite a way to go before I look as elegant as Karena. I am going to do end my workout with this stretch 2-3 times a week.
8) Fine Toning – This 20 minute workout is another great way to tone your entire body. Pair with 45 minutes of cardio for a great sweat sesh! The fine toning method that K&K use in this workout is the first time that I have seen it and I love it. It really burns!
9) Set the Bar – This is a 20 minute routine you are supposed to do the first thing when you start this DVD. I didn’t do it, because I have been working out for a while and I always wear a heart rate monitor, so I can see my progress on there. Also, I can see my progress in my overall energy levels throughout the day. But if you are starting out, this is a great way to chart your progress. You first print out the Progress sheet which is available for free on their website, fill in the numbers, and do this workout every 2 weeks to chart your progress.
I personally absolutely love this DVD. It has really exceeded my expectations. I never thought I would work out at home, but this is a great way to workout when you are pressed for time or it’s too cold or inconvenient to go out. It is like having a personal trainer. I also find Karena and Katrina very pleasant and easy to listen to. Their narration is such a refreshing change from the aggressive and pushy form I normally associate with TV trainers. Also, the fact that they have the option of buying a digital download edition of their DVD is amazing. You save shipping charges and can buy it from anywhere in the world. And you are not restricted to devices with DVD players. If you live in a busy city like I do, it is so much cheaper than a gym membership and a personal trainer, and you have far fewer excuses to skip your workout.
When working out, keep challenging yourself. Some day, I will try Insanity and P90X. But for now, this DVD is exactly what I need! I am sore and achy, but I feel excited everyday to work out and I can already see the results :).
I hope my review helps :)! Enjoy!