Home > fitness, wellness > Initial Impressions: PeakFit’s Pure Strength 1 Review

Initial Impressions: PeakFit’s Pure Strength 1 Review

The second workout in the PeakFit Rotation is Pure Strength 1.  As you might have guessed, there is at least a second workout known as Pure Strength 2, and I imagine the Michelle Dozois may be setting up for sequels after that one as well.  It’s the first disc in the packaging which had originally misled me to think it was the first workout in the rotation.  Pure Strength 1 is not a “sculpting” workout.  It is a very fast moving resistance training workout that utilizes heavy dumbbells as well as their Exerspy resistance band, but don’t think Ellen Barrett sculpting when you pop in this DVD.   Michelle challenges you to use weights that will push your limits — for reference, I used 8lbs for my light dumbbells and I used 12lbs for the heavy dumbbells (though I wish to graduate to 15lbs by the end of the 8 week rotation).  It is a deceptive workout for those of us who have embraced serious resistance training…you may not feel like you worked super hard during the workout but man you manage to have DOMS somewhere the next day!

The Breakdown.  There are four segments done back to back to create a eight circuit workout.  First you start with the large body parts like back and chest, you move into legs, and then you finish with shoulders, biceps, and triceps to complete the total body workout.  Almost every movement involves compound movement, and you will use a variety of tools including a pair of light and heavy dumbbells,  a mat, and the coveted Exerspy resistance band.  Many of the movements are kettlebell inspired as well, but I never decided to grab a kettlebell in lieu of a dumbbell during the workout. The workout, including warmup and cooldown, runs under 53 minutes which makes it great workout for those of us who do not have hours to spend at the gym (despite how much we dream of it).

The good.  Despite greatly disliking CLX, I found myself really appreciating the compound movements in the PeakFit system (so far).  Michelle’s instructions and exhibition of proper form was near impeccable.  She doesn’t seem to ever spend too much time on one particular move — which can be good and bad — but it does keep the brain moving.  On that same note, since you get to repeat each set, you can mentally prepare to do the whole thing better on the other side in just a couple minutes.  As I start out the Peakfit program, I appreciate these “opportunities” to grow, but I am willing to admit that I may tire of this later.  Camera angles and production are in line with the rest of the system.  The modifier is helpful for some parts of the workout though there were times I had to do my own modification not presented in the DVD.

The not so good.  Anyone starting this program is going to start with, “I could barely move the resistance band!”  Me too.  I feel you…but I’d rather have a stiff band at the start that breaks in to the right level of challenge in a couple days then have something so weak that its barely challenging for me way too soon.  Trust me, the band breaks in better in 24 hours after doing this workout.  Be patient — it’ll pay off.  The next complaint would be the fast pace of the workout.  It moves really quickly so the first time is almost a rush, and one may miss a couple reps here or there.  I recommend to really be mentally prepared for all the weights needed for the workout.  When you do a workout several times, you don’t need to preview all the moves, but in the meantime, it would help someone get a better flow of the workout if they preview and really study what’s going to happen ahead of time.  There are some terminology issues: she refers to hammer curls as bicep curls which screws me up each time, but I imagine once you know what you’re going to do its not an issue.  Lastly, I have a sucky core so anything that requires better core control often makes me fall flat on my face (but I stem it off by using my knees).

Final Verdict.  I reserve my judgment for a later date!  I know, a cop out, but if I have to say something based on one try of the workout: it’s an excellent cued compound body exercise workout routine.  And its has made me high curious to any other workout with the word strength in it (Pure Strength 2, Cardio Strength 1, and Cardio Strength 2).  Peakfit’s looking good!

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