Today’s Workout: Pilates

On a day like today, a reliable indoor workout is a plus.



I’m a huge fan of Pilates and try to do it 1-2 times a week.  Pilates was one of the first fitness classes I really got into post-college.  I took a class at the local Y back in Chicago – the same instructor for about 2 years, the same group of people in the class.  We had the loud breather, the runner (guy) who wore short running shorts, etc.   And it’s when I first started to notice that yes, indeed, I do have a waist.  I always feel a little longer and leaner after a good Pilates mat class/workout.

A great at-home Pilates workout to check out is Mari Winsor: Pilates.   I used the DVD via Netflix.

There’s an express, 20 minute option and a full, 50 minute floor workout.  I use the 50 minute workout which takes me through plenty of abs, lower body toning moves, and core “scooping”.


The workout provides variations for beginners and more advanced practitioners.  It’s a great DVD if you’re new to Pilates.  I will say that it moves a bit slow if you’re more advanced.

The only equipment needed is a yoga or exercise mat.  Be sure to wear comfy clothes.

Do you have a good at-home Pilates workout to recommend?  Do you do Pilates? What’s today’s workout?

Today’s Workout: Exhale: Core Fusion Body Sculpt DVD

Happy Friday!

The Winter snow finally started to fall in Wisconsin and last night was perfect for an at-home workout.  I use Netflix mainly for workout DVDs and I had
Exhale:  Core Fusion Body Sculpt at home.

Source: Acacia

Core Fusion was created by Fred DeVito and Elisabeth Halfpapp and they are founders of exhale mind/body spa.  There are a number of workouts in the Core Fusion line – Pilates Plus, Abs & Arms, Thighs & Glutes, Bootcamp, Yoga Energy Flow, and more.  I’ve done the Pilates and Yoga workouts and loved them.  Thighs & Glutes – not so much.  I was sore and in pain for a few days.

Core Fusion Strength is a great go-to DVD for a 50 minute strengthening, stretching, and muscle endurance workout.  You will need 1 set of light weights (3-5lbs), a mat, a chair, and a towel or stretch belt.  There are 5, 10 minute modules:
1.  Upper Body –  Very targeted movements that engage muscles you may not even know you have.  Even with the 3lb weights, this is a tough one.
2.  Thigh Sculpt – Moves that work to increase endurance and power in your muscles.
3.  Gluteus Sculpt – Ouch.  During these standing leg lifts I always think about a Jazzercise instructor from my hometown…her favorite line was, “If you don’t squeeze ’em, no one else will”.  During this segment you can hold on to a chair or counter, but I balance to add core strengthening.  Your back and abs are certainly engaged during these glute exercises.
4.  Abdominal Sculpt – Another Ouch.  This is like holding at the top of a sit-up for about 10 minutes.  Fred even says, “This will be the most difficult ab work you’ll ever do.”
5.  Stretch – Spend the 10 minutes at the end to stretch.  Most of the time I skip the stretching segment at the end of a DVD, but with the Core Fusion workouts, you need to stretch to gain the full benefits of the workout.

The instructors emphasize posture, specific movements, and strength in stillness and alignment, positioning and how much you can do in the exercise while remaining aligned.    You can view the DVD intro online and hear more from the instructors.

A selection of Exhale DVDs are available on Netflix, for purchase at Acacia , and on Hulu (search Get Fit, Stay Fit in the Hulu search and the Exhale Core Fusion:  Get Lean and Toned is available for viewing).

I’m hopeful that there’s enough snow on the ground so that I can dust off my snowshoes this weekend!

What are your weekend workout plans?

*Disclaimer:  I am not a personal trainer or medical expert.  The views expressed are my own and should not be taken as medical advice.*