When I saw Jillian Michaels had added to her suite of cool fitness DVDs with the Jillian Michaels One Week Shred, I pre-ordered it immediately. I’ve been a long time fan of hers since I lost 12 lbs doing the 30 Day Shred and I’ve tried every single one of her workouts with great success. But then, I always wonder if any new fitness DVD will really work.

If you’re wondering whether One Week Shred is worth the money–and the pain–I did it for the full seven days and I can help you, first-hand.

The whole concept behind pretty much all of Jillian Michaels’ workouts is that they are high intensity over a short amount of time, which is really great for busy moms. The One Week Shred, however, is two short workouts per day–one 30-minute strength routine in the morning and one 30-minute cardio routine in the evening.

Like her other workouts, all you need is a couple of 3-pound weights–or in my case, two large tomato sauce cans–and a pair of good sneakers. Jillian has two helpers behind her demonstrating easier harder variations of the workout, so you can tailor the routine to your own ability. There is also a meal plan recommendation, but I just decided to stick to my general low-carb, relatively healthy diet, and perhaps lay off the dessert.

The two workouts contain pretty common whole-body exercises, both high and low intensity, combined to give you maximum results in a short amount of time. I’m fairly coordinated and in decent shape, and I was able to complete the movements…for the most part. If I ran into any trouble, I just dropped back and followed the easier variation until I could pick up the regular one again.

I do like that the routines are challenging but not super hard; it’s nice to feel like you actually did something other than lie on the floor breathing hard.

Compared to her other DVDs, like the 30-day Shred, I wasn’t as sore as I usually am after just one day, but I could definitely feel the burn right away. By the second day, it hurt to walk and laugh. By the last day, I was feeling pretty strong and toned, if a little bored with the same routine for seven days straight. One tip: mute the DVD and work out to your own music.

Also be aware that the two workout a day thing can be pretty inconvenient, and not just because I want to be done exercising in the morning. That’s two showers I’m taking (or should be taking) instead of one, and a pretty heavy time commitment overall.

I didn’t lose seven pounds as the DVD suggests you can, but then, I didn’t follow the meal plan. In fact, I got really hungry around Day 5 and started to crave carbs and sugar, probably because I was burning so many calories. And if you’ve got bad knees, this is not the workout for you. That said, my pants and clothes do fit better after just a week, and I can see a little line in my abs that I’m not sure I have ever seen before. I also feel so much stronger.

Bottom line: If you’ve got an event coming up–party, wedding, vacation–and you want to tone up pretty quickly, I’d say give the One Week Shred a try. If you’re looking to change up your workouts, you could always alternate between cardio one day, strength another.

For a longer term exercise plan, I’d recommend Jillian’s other workout DVDs which offer offer great results–and a bit more variety.

You can purchase One Week Shred at our affiliate Amazon.com

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