Fitness Friday: Favorite Moves and Thoughts from Weeks 1 & 2 of #BodyShred

BodyShred is my workout of choice these days. I started after Ripped in 30, 3 weeks ago. It’s 30 minutes, 6 days a week. It kicks my butt every single day.

From amazon: Jillian Michaels BODYSHRED is a high-intensity, holistic resistance and endurance-based 60-Day fitness plan, involving synergistic 3D body dynamics that explore the scope of movement possibilities to maximize athletic performance and metabolic potential in just 30 minutes. Using Jillian’s S.H.R.E.D. Method, you’ll shed fat, define muscle, transform the look of your entire physique, and dramatically enhance your overall health and athletic performance!

If you want to start this, be ready to work for 30 minutes. It’s the same warm up every time (except for cardio days, which have no warm up). The transitions are the fastest I’ve ever experienced. You move from each exercise in almost no time. There is no time to get water either so make sure you’re hydrated. The first few times I did each workout I paused and went back because I missed 2 or 3 moves because it goes so fast.

I just finished dvd’s from BodyShred weeks 1 (Launch) & 2 (Rise) today. Now I’m moving on to weeks 3 (Amplify) & 4 (Escalate) even though techinically it will be my week 4 starting Sunday. I stayed with Launch and Rise for an extra week because I wasn’t feeling strong enough to move on. I’m starting week 3 on Sunday and I have to say I’m a little nervous. I am feeling so much stronger though! I thought it would be fun to share my favorite moves from Body Shred Launch and Rise just so you can see the pain I’m being put through. The moves in these two dvds are not insane, but they are really tough. I’ve heard that once you move on, it gets pretty crazy. In this program there are MEGA SETS, not even super sets that just work the same body parts for 3 moves in a row. Are you sore yet?


Screen Shot 2015-08-13 at 3.02.50 PM 5 Favorite Fitness Moves from Jillian Michaels BODYSHRED


  • Wide Push Ups
  • Donkey Kicks (these are cruel. Especially cruel because you just hammered your arms in the strength circuit with renegade rows before it and then have to stay on arms to get your legs up!)
  • Uneven push ups – I think I love these so much just because it was the first time I’ve done push ups on my toes in months! I still did the wide and chatarunga push ups on my knees.
  • Chair Squat with front raise
  • Hero: get into plank; push back, bending knees until they are a few inches off ground, then push forward back into plank. 
before BodyShred to After week 2

Before BodyShred to After Week 2  (3 months Post Partum)

Thoughts of Weeks 1 & 2: I’m so happy I’m seeing such great results with this program. I really think the majority of the reason is because I’m sticking to it and not doing any extra cardio. I’ll take the girls for a walk a couple times a week, but it’s very leisurely and it’s not long. I’m absolutely in love with the 3-2-1 method of strength, cardio and core/abs….and the fact that this is 30 minutes. I should also note that there are 4 circuits in each workout! It is slightly longer than 30 minutes with warm up and cool down, so figure just under 35 minutes, but then you are DONE. It’s such a comprehensive workout and you really feel that results. I used 5s and 8s for both of these strength workout. By week 2 I was using primarly 8s except for side lunges with serving biceps, those still needs 5s!

To get back to this level of fitness I really have to take care of myself. I have to foam roll, stretch and ice everyday. I have also been going to the chiropractor once a week. My left IT band has a history of getting tight, so I’m very careful to not over do it…and that means lugging the car seat around. I know I’m going to have to preview the next two workouts because I need to learn the moves before I can do it smoothly. I didn’t really do that this time, but I paused a lot the first time I did it to make sure I was going it correctly (and because I felt like I was dying…)

Since I’m starting on a Sunday, I’ll have the time to do that, but as for Monday’s workout I’ll have to make sure I don’t hit snooze on the wake up! This workout series I would say is NOT for someone starting from scratch. I would highly recommend going through Ripped in 30 before you do this. After being confident with level 4 of Ripped in 30, you’ll be ready for this. The moves in bodyshred are high intermediate I would say. There are modifications, but if you need to modify the whole workout, I would say get stronger before you do this.

As for the diet, I’m not following it. I’m trying to just honor my body by eating when I’m hungry and not over eating. I also try to stay balanced and not over do it on sugar. That’s good enough for me. I stay away from processed food most of the time, so that’s good enough for me. I have a hard time with lunches because I don’t really have time to prepare anything…but that’s a post for another day.

I’ll be sure to write more about my experience with BodyShred as the weeks go on!

More places to find me:

Instagram @nicoleculver

Twitter @nicoleculver

Periscope @nicoleculver

*Links to Body Shred in this post are amazon affiliate links and give me a small percentage of your purchase. Thank you for your support! 

Body After Baby #2: Jillian Michaels Ripped in 30 Review

When I reached the end of my pregnancy with Mila, I was so ready to 1. have my baby and 2. get back to working out. I made a promise to myself that I would really rest until I was really recovered and that I would focus on getting my strength back through strength training and lay off the cardio…enter Jillian Michaels Ripped in 30 .

I started walking about 2 weeks after I gave birth, but they were short walks. After 4 weeks, I was ready to get back to very light weights and I did some barre work. I found a 15 minute lower body barre workout and an upper body Tone It Up workout. I did those two workouts for 3 weeks, a total of 2 times each per week.

At 7 weeks postpartum I started Ripped in 30. I didn’t take before pictures, which I kind of wish I did now, but I just wasn’t into it. The weight didn’t come off as quick as it did with Liv, but it wasn’t bad. (I still have probably 5 pounds to go, but those are always the hardest to lose!)  The thing I found most annoying is that my shorts didn’t fit (obviously!) and I was limited in what I had to wear. It wasn’t a “I care about my weight and how I look thing”, it was a “I’m over wearing this one pair of shorts” thing. Luckily, elastic shorts are in this year and I grabbed a few pairs from JCrew.

Ripped in 30 is an amazing workout program. For $8.96 on Amazon it includes 4 workouts, each one harder than the next. I keep recommending this to friends and I have 5 friends that are doing it now. The reason why this is so, so great is that it’s 30 minutes. 30 minutes! That’s it. And frankly, that’s all I have time for.

Half Way Through Ripped in 30

Half Way Through Ripped in 30

Each workout consists of 3 rounds of her 3-2-1 system. 3 minutes strength, 2 cardio, 1 abs/core. All the moves work different parts of your body at the same time. They’re combo moves, so they really make you work. You won’t be stopping for the entire 30 minutes, so make sure you’re ready to work! I should add, that I was really starting from beginner level. There is a modifier in every workout and if you need to modify even more, just do the reps slower. I will admit to hitting pause a few times to take a break.

Some examples of the moves are: Strength: push ups, squats with push press, crescent pose with tricep kickbacks, dead lift with upright row, chair pose with reverse fly. Cardio: fast feet, butt kicks, leg hops, burpees, plank jacks and mountain climbers. Abs: Lots of variations of planks and crunches!

After workout 3 ripped in 30

After workout 3: Ripped in 30

I spent about 2 weeks on each workout and did it every other day. Jillian suggests on the DVD doing it 5-6 days a week, but that was too much for me. I ended up going for a walk, or doing her short cardio dvd from BodyShred on the opposite days (unless it was a rest day).

I decided to focus on strength training because I wanted to lose fat. When I do a lot of cardio, which is my default, I don’t tone up as quickly. PLUS, I have less time than before with two kids, so I don’t have time to run 4-5 miles, 3x a week. Now my schedule is get up at 5:00, fit in a workout and try to take the kids for a walk if weather permits.

Ripped in 30 is perfect for this. You get your strength, cardio and core in…and done. Up, workout, shower and done by 6:00. In my past life, I was a cardio queen and I’m fighting those tendencies.  Sometimes I still feel like the more cardio the better, but it’s NOT true at all. I’m working on getting fit again in 30 minutes a day and I’m already seeing big changes, no treadmill involved. The only “cardio” I’m doing is part of the program and then regular walking. No treadmill, no cardio machines, nothing. Even still, my walk is about 20-30 minutes and it’s LEISURELY.


Post Ripped in 30

Post Ripped in 30

Body After Baby #2: Post Ripped in 30

I would love to hear your thoughts if you have done Ripped in 30. Anyone have any other 30 minute workout program you are doing? I started BodyShred last week and I’m loving it even more than Jillian Michaels Ripped in 30 . Somehow it’s even more intense. I’ll be sure to keep you posted on Body Shred throughout the program.

Other places to find me:

Instagram @nicoleculver

Twitter @nicoleculver

Periscope @nicoleculver

*Note: the links in this post are Amazon Affiliate links. I will recieve a small percentage of your purchase. Thank you for your support of my blog! 

Bob Harper Total Body Transformation DVD Giveaway!

FRIDAY! May weekends to me are the best because they have the promise of the warm weather and summer that is coming soon!

These summer weekends have always been my favorite because they used to signal end of school year and more time I could spend with Danny. We had a long distance relationship for years (from summer 2004 to May 2008) and the summer would be when I would travel more and go down to Philadelphia or the Jersey shore and hang out with him since I could take long weekends. Now looking back I’m not sure how we did it. It certainly was the opposite of easy, but it was worth it. It was perfect that we got engaged on Memorial Day and married Labor Day the following year because those were always special weekends for us.

Well, now that my fitness post has been sabotaged by my sappy pregnancy hormones…I’ll move on. I’m just excited to head down to the beach tomorrow…

Tuesday night I went to the Bob Harper Skinny Rules book launch. Now, usually going into the city at 5 o’clock isn’t my most favorite thing to do. However, I’m trying to take advantage of fun events because I know in 6 months I’ll be home for a couple of weeks/months before I really am feeling adventurous again. (Side note: I know life isn’t going to stop when baby arrives, but it’ll be safe to say I’ll be enjoying some home time.) With that and the fact I love Bob Harper, I decided to go to the event.

We got to chat with Bob for a couple of minutes and he shared that he loves healthy living bloggers. He was also pretty excited by some of the major weight loss stories in the group. For a ridiculously complete recap check out Meredith’s post. She did the event justice! When we left we got a nice bag with a signed Skinny Rules book inside, Bob’s Total Body Transformation DVD, a candle, some bath salts and a hat. Obviously I’m super excited to read the book, but I was also psyched to try out the DVD. I have many of Bob’s DVDs and I love them all, so I was sure I’d love this one too.

Bob Harper Skinny Rules

Bob Harper

The DVD boats that it will give you a “threshold-shattering workout that annihilates fat and replaces it with lean, solid, power-packed muscle.” It is supposed to be a intense conditioning, high level training DVD that incorporates internals, pylometrics, strenth and endurance. It also has 2 workouts on it, 1 being 60 minutes and the 2nd being 10 minutes for a short on time workout.


I did the 60 minute workout and was fully prepared to modify whatever I needed to for my pregnant self. I actually really loved this DVD (no surprise). I used between 3 and 8 pound weights, rested when I needed to and modified moves accordingly (think push up on knees, side plank with knee down, etc).  It IS an intense workout that doesn’t stop the entire time. Bob takes you through intense high interval moves like squat jumps, jump lunges, sprinting in place and more. But he also alternates those moves with weight bearing exercises that will keep your heart rate up, but not bumping out of your chest! (note: I did not let my heart bump out of my chest!)

There are not many modifications in the DVD because it’s supposed to be intense. Bob does tell you if the weight gets very heavy to put it down or choose a lighter weight and he does, in fact, give lighter weights to 2 of the fitness models in the DVD. I think most people can figure out how to modify if needed, like I did (i.e. just do regular lunges, not jump lunges)  but if you are a true beginner, I would start with a different DVD. My one CON in the video is I felt like when the people in the video got tired, their form really suffered. I would have rather seen them do push-ups on their knees then see poor form. Maybe that’s just me though?

It’s no secret I LOVE at home DVDs. They give you an awesome workout option when you can’t get to the gym. I can see myself using this many times in the future….like maybe even today.

So what do I have for you? Well, since Danny came to the event with me, we just happened to get 2 DVD’s! (and 2 books, but I gave that to my mom…sorry! :) )

Bob Harper Total Body Transformation DVD giveaway!

How to enter:

Mandatory: Leave a comment saying what your current favorite workout DVD or workout is.

Extra Entries: (You MUST leave seperate entry for each for it to count!)

  • Tweet about the giveaway with a link to this post! LEAVE a seperate comment saying you did!
  • Pin this giveaway. LEAVE a seperate comment saying you did!

I’ll pick the winner via random number generator next Friday, May 25th.

Bob Harper and Bloggers

Happy Weekend!

Friday Workout!

Happy Friday!

Finally I can see the sun after a week of yuck! I secretly didn’t mind the rain because lots of rain = me not wanting to run outside and since I’m taking a break from running..that’s a good thing.

I was going to post the chicken tortilla soup I made earlier in the week, but then the sun came out…and who wants to read about soup when it’s sunny and warm? So that recipe will have to wait for another rainy day.

This morning I did a Body Rock workout. I combined 2 and let out some of the one legged exercises because I didn’t want to put a lot of stress on my knee/leg. I did the hot attack workout (leaving out the last set) and hot body workout. Both of them took me about 30 minutes to do together because I’m slow. I also had to modify and use my knees for some because it’s HARD.

Then I did about 15 minutes of light weights using this Tracy Anderson workout and 3 pound weights. I don’t agree with her ridiculously low calorie diet plans, but she does have some good exercises/routines, so why not use them?

I felt a little bored, so I wanted to switch it up for my workout. I am not really doing intense jumping workouts, so I really had to look through Body rock to find one that would work!

What’s on your Friday workout agenda?

The Brooklyn Half is this weekend and I dropped out because of my runner’s knee. I know it’s for the best because I’m taking good care of myself, but it’s still frustrating/annoying. I know I’ll be back to running soon, so I have to stay positive! Luckily there are still other workouts I can do without worrying about hurting myself more!

Have a wonderful day!

Something to check out: Have you thought about using organic beauty ingredients? Honestly, I don’t but this made me think about investing in some!