With this ChaLEAN Extreme Review, I bring to a close my 10th week of the ChaLEAN Extreme program. I started this program with some particular goals in mind. Stay in shape! Keep my former P90X Results. I’ll talk more about that in just a moment.
Some of you may be doing this program as a first time program, so your goals may be different. Those goals may be to lose a certain amount of weight, or to get in shape, or maybe just to get toned, and add some muscle. Whatever your goals, I hope that they are coming along nicely. I’m doing this program as a “continuation” of my training. If this is your first program, I hope you will be “continuing” your training after your 12th week. Get it set in your mind now, what you will be doing for your 2nd round! What will your goals be then? How will they change? Did you achieve your first round goals? If you did EXCELLENT! And if not, that’s OK. You’re learning, you’re trying your best, and you’re doing something to move forward. No matter how slow, you ARE moving forward. Pat your self on the back for getting to week 10!
I hope every single one of you will continue into a 2nd round, 3rd, 4th, whatever round you’re on. I’m training for my life. It’s a lifetime commitment. I’m not training for an event, a fitness show, or a magazine photo shoot. I’m just an ordinary person, living an ordinary life, with the exception that I am going to live a longer, healthier, happier life. I haven’t set drastic goals for myself, I set realistic goals each round, and go after them with 110% effort. Anything is possible once you get your mind right.
So my goals were to maintain my P90X results. P90X is an extreme program. And after 8 rounds of P90X, I have obtained some great results. You can always check my P90X Review. So I went into ChaLEAN Extreme wanting to maintain. I wanted to see if I could complete 12 weeks away from an extreme program like the X, and not take one single step backwards in my level of fitness. In week 10, I can tell you, I have not taken one step backwards, and quite possibly grown stronger because of it. I will say one downside of ChaLEAN is the lack of chin ups, I guess I should say no chin ups. But that’s only my perspective. I just love chin ups. 🙂 After my 12th week, I plan on writing a P90X vs. ChaLEAN Extreme Review, so be on the look out for that. Okay, if you’re thinking, where’s the review? I’ll quit ranting and get to it.
ChaLEAN Extreme Review: Lean Circuit 3.
This workout is approximately 39 minutes long, with a 4 minute warm up, including a warm up set with weights. After the short and sweet warm up, you get right into the first exercise.
1. Squat with Cross-Body Chop – Using only one weight, and holding the same weight with both hands. Keep your feet together, and lower down into a squat, and move the weight over to one side. Keeping the arms straight, you will lift the weight across the body, and up to the opposite side around shoulder height. As you move the weight upwards, you raise out of the squat. As you lift the weight up and back, you should feel your obliques. You switch and do the opposite side. Depending on your reps. Remember that you are going for 12 max, and a minimum of 10 reps. So you should get at least 5 on each side. I like this one!
Extreme Set: This set is just a good old fashioned squat. You will need both weights, and while you’re getting your second weight, go ahead and throw some more weight on. 🙂 When you come out of the squat (feet shoulder width apart), lean back and put all of your weight on your heels.
2. Reverse Lunge and Arnold Press- This exercise is a monster! At least it is for me. Again with a single weight. Hold the weight with your palm facing you, elbow bent, and the weight about shoulder high. You will step back with your opposite foot as the hand holding the weight. As you step back, you begin to press the weight over your head, twisting the weight as you press. As the weight reaches its maximum height, you should be in a reverse lunge. Now step forward as you slowly lower the weight to the starting position. The extreme set below will be done after each side.
Extreme Set: Perform the same exact exerise but don’t step backwards. You have to dig deep doing the extreme set. They’re hard, especially if you are failing at 10-12 reps on the exercise before the extreme. The slower you raise and lower the weight, the stronger you become.
3. Chest Fly with Hip Lift – Did I say the last exercise was a monster. Because what I meant to say was that this one was a monster. Maybe I should just say that they ALL are. 🙂 So lying on your back, raise both weights to the up position, arms straight. Now raise your hips. As you lower the weight, you will lower your hips. At the bottom, neither the weights or your hips should touch or rest on the ground. We don’t want it to be easy do we?
Extreme Set: Same thing as above, except no hips are involved. Slow movements.
4. Kneeling Overhead Press and Center Crunch – This exercise involves two weights. I would recommend a towel or a pad to rest your knees on. Take a kneeling position (don’t sit back on your feet), and hold two weights (one in each hand) about shoulder high. Elbows will be bent. You’ll make an abdominal crunch, then raise up, and press the weight straight up. Repeat.
Extreme Set: This exercise is standing, you’ll do 3 regular presses, straight up over your head.
5. Push-Up Side Planks – This exercise is rather simple. You’ll perform a regular push up, then you’ll turn to one side, and raise your hand straight up towards the ceiling. So in this position, you’ll be sideways. then you’ll repeat with another push up and a side plank on the opposite side. Important point to remember. This is an excellent core exercise. In the push up, keep your back straight, don’t raise your hips too high, or allow them to sag towards the ground. Same goes for the side plank position. If you start to fail, go to your knees before you continue with poor form.
Extreme Set: Regular push ups.
6. Dead Lift Frontal Press – This exercise requires excellent form. If your form is not as it should be, lower your weight! Your back must be straight at all times. If done correctly, this exercise is great for your hamstrings, lower back, and shoulders. Hold a weight in each hand, elbows bent, and the weight around shoulder height. Lower your upper body, back straight, weights in tight to the body. Go as low as you can go with exceptional form. Then raise back up, keep your back straight. In the regular standing position, press the weights up over your head.
Extreme Set: Same thing as before, but no dead lift.
7. Traveling Push-Ups – As the name states, you will perform a regular push up, then you’ll “travel” left or right. You do this by bringing your hands together, than back out again. You’ll do the same thing with your feet. It’s hard to explain, but you’ll see. 🙂
Extreme Set: Tricep push ups.
8. Chest Fly – Abduction – This move was tough! I’ll be honest, I had to take two breaks in the middle of the exercise. You are lying on your back again, with a weight in each hand, and they are both in the raised position (extended upwards). At the same time, your legs are also straight up, with the thigh toner band around your ankles. You put tension on the band. As you lower your hands, you lower your feet (maintaining tension on the band). The lower you can go on your legs, the harder the move becomes. It’s important to keep your lower back on the ground at all times. I had to lower my legs twice during this exercise to rest. It wasn’t the chest fly that was difficult, it was the legs that were weak. I’ll improve next week! I will say though, each move I lowered my legs to just inches above the floor.
Extreme Set: Chest fly only.
9. Army Crawl – For the last exercise, you will be in the plank position. Chalene has you in the plank position, resting on your elbows and forearms, but alternatively, you could be in a regular plank. So from the plank, you will bring one knee upwards towards your elbow, then back out straight again. Then you’ll switch legs. If you pause at the top of the movement, and contract your abs, you’ll really feel this exercise.
Extreme Set: From plank, you’ll lift one leg straight up, working your lower back. Lower and repeat two more times. Then switch legs.
By now, you should be ready for the cool down. I know I was! The cool down lasts a little more than 3 minutes, and of course take more time if you need to.
I really really enjoy the Lean Circuit of ChaLEAN Extreme. Although there are one or two moves that I really despise, all in all, it has some very effective and challenging exercises. Feel free to send me some mail, I would enjoy hearing from any of you! Especially since you listen to me ramble on and on. 🙂 Have a great weekend! Don’t forget to subscribe or check back often for more ChaLEAN Extreme Reviews.