Review: Jillian Michaels / 30 Day Shred

(4.5 / 5)

I’m of course talking about Jillian Michaels’ DVD called 30 Day Shred. Have you tried it? I’ve done it once before and am just planning to do it again soon.

How does 30 Day Shred work?

Jillian Michaels is that energetic trainer from America’s Biggest Loser TV show. She’s done some workout DVDs and 30 Day Shred is one of them. I’ve tried some of her other DVDs as well and if you haven’t tried any of them but would like to, I’d suggest you to start with this one.

The idea is very simple and clever: There are three workouts on 30 Day Shred DVD – levels one, two and three. They are all only around 20 minutes long and the structure is the same in all three workouts: warm up, exercises (three rounds that each have 3 minutes of strength training, 2 minutes of cardio and 1 minute abs) and cool down.

Jillian Michaels' 30 Day Shred DVD
Jillian Michaels’ 30 Day Shred DVD

I guess the general idea of 30 Day Shred is to do it in 30 consecutive days: 10 days on level one, 10 days on level two and then 10 days on level three.

What equipment do you need?

You will need to have an exercise mat and a pair of dumbbells. I’ve used simple 1 and 2 kg (= 2 and 4 pound) dumbbells as I have no upper body strength. If you have more than one pair you can use heavier dumbbells for some exercises and lighter ones for others.

My experience

I did this DVD on 30 consecutive days just as I wrote above about 1,5 years ago. I wasn’t in a great shape and the first workout felt horrible. I couldn’t do all the jumping jacks, my calves felt like they were on fire and I just wanted to pause the DVD, sit on the sofa and never press play again. But I fought through it. And as the days went by it got easier and easier to do.

I didn’t follow a diet back then, so if you want to lose weight you should follow a diet program at the same time. The biggest changes that I noticed were in cardio. All of a sudden I could just jump, jump, jump away without any difficulties and I had so much energy.

If/when I do this again, I’ll probably have a day off once or twice a week, just to let my muscles have some time to rest and recover. The last time I did this DVD I was quite exhausted towards the end of the month as I did the workout every day.

Working out the abs, final move before cool down!
Working out the abs, final move before cool down!

The good

The workouts are absolutely brilliant. Very simple but effective. You might think that level one must be easy, but trust me it isn’t. Another good thing about this workout is that there are two options for each exercise, an advanced and a modified one. The push ups for example, I couldn’t do a proper one to save my life. I just can’t. I’ve sometimes wondered if there’s something genetically wrong with me, you know, my body is not structured properly. Or maybe I just lack muscles. However, the DVD allows me to do a modified version of the push up.

The best thing about this workout is that it’s just 20 minutes. I mean, who doesn’t have 20 minutes a day! The workout is really hard. But as it is just 20 minutes so it should be if one wants results.

The bad

In my opinion, the only negative thing about this DVD is the music. It’s really quite bad. But then you can always mute the TV and listen something else – after you’ve done the DVD a couple of times you remember quite well what’s coming next so you can focus on the movements and just have a look at the TV screen every now and then. Also, if you have problems with your knees, you might need to modify some moves.


This is such a great workout DVD, both for beginners (as you can modify) and people who exercise regularly but are looking for a good quick and intensive workout.

I highly recommend this DVD.

Region 1 (US & Canada, affiliate link)

Region 2 (Europe, affiliate link)




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