UnderReview: Jillian Michaels’ Book and DVDs

Yesterday we interviewed Rock & Roll Motorcycle herself, Jillian Michaels. Jillian is most known for her tough yet emotional approach to getting people healthy on The Biggest Loser, and she dished to FBG on her latest venture into nutritional supplements. Today we’re continuing the Jillian content by reviewing two other pieces of her get-fit empire: a book and two of her DVDs. Erin had the opportunity to review Master Your Metabolism, and Jenn was sent her two most recent DVDs to give the once (or 14 times as you’ll see below) over. May the bad-ass Rock & Roll Motorcycling begin!

Master Your Metabolism

If you’ve been battling those extra 15 pounds your entire life and just can’t shake them, Master Your Metabolism may be the book for you. After reader Stephanie P. sent us a detailed email raving about the book, we immediately added it to our to-read list. In the book, Jillian talks about her background and her struggles with keeping her weight down in spite of calorie counting and crazy workouts. She details how she later discovered it was her hormones that were messing up her metabolism. Her testosterone was extremely low, her stress hormones were out of control, and she was also hypothyroid, all of which were wreaking  havoc on her efforts to be as healthy as possible.

In the book, Jillian does an amazing job of breaking down all of the key hormones in the human body, how they can get messed up and what you can do to fix yourself. It’s a very fact-heavy and science-rich book, but Jillian makes it accessible for any reader. She takes a firm stand against processed “Frankenfoods” and recommends whole, organic foods. With meal plans and shopping lists, she makes cleaning up your diet a breeze. As Stephanie said in her email, “It has inspired me to clean up my act…not just to be in better physical shape, but to be in better overall health.” I have to agree that it did the same for me.

Banish Fat, Boost Metabolism

As Bob would say, this workout DVD is no joke. No friggin’ joke. It’s hard. And awesome. Ask my husband. I somehow convinced him to do this with me, and then we were sore together for the two next days. (Kind of my relationship dream, to tell you the truth.) Including a quick warm-up and cool down, Jillian takes you through a 55-minute workout of seven circuits of mostly high-intensity cardio moves that are repeated twice. To get all the way through them, you need a good pair of knees, a lot of energy, a pretty big space to lunge, mountain climb and plank your heart out (including walking planks—OMG the shoulder soreness the next day), and a big towel to soak up your own sweat. Again, it’s no joke. Jillian’s cuing and information is spot-on in this DVD. The only thing left to be desired is the music…it’s not inspiring or special in the least. And, I do not endorse it for beginners unless you’re willing to modify a lot of the moves and hit pause a lot. Definitely a DVD towork up to. And for the intermediate to advanced exercisers (or those who know and love The Shred), add it to your cardio collection stat!

No More Trouble Zones

This workout DVD isn’t as cardiovascularly hard as Banish Fat, Boost Metabolism, but it’s still really tough (read: not for newbies). The 50-minute workout includes a warm-up and cool down and seven full circuits of crazy. With just yourself, a mat and a pair of dumbbells, it’s amazing what pain Jillian can inflict on you. From push-ups to twisting planks to windshield wipers, she brings it. Hawd. And with seven circuits of effective yet unique exercises (you don’t see these moves in every other strength DVD on the market), you get a full-body workout without complicated choreography or perkiness. You get Jillian. Doing her thang. Which is awesome. And she even dogs on her own flexibility—or lack thereof—which filled me with such delight as I am sooo not a bendy person. You rarely get someone making of themselves in a workout DVD. Made me love the DVD even more.

Have we convinced you yet that Jillian is certifiably bad-ass? We thought so! —Jenn & Erin



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  1. I would love Master your Metabolism because I have thyroid issues & have tried everything to get my levels normal. Medication, eating healthy, working out like crazy & nothing seems to get me where I need to be. Thanks!!!

  2. i have been fighting my weight since i was 18 years old…..i am now 45, and i have struggled and what works for MOST does NOT WORK FOR ME, i have two of Jillians DVD’s and they are awesome….I run every day and do strength training and or her video every other day….still no weight loss even with proper eating (or what i’ve been told is proper eating) i NEED THIS BOOK…..I need some give here in my life, i am getting soo frustrated as usually just thinking i’ll be chunky forever and hating it

  3. I would love this book. I bought the 30 day shred DVD of hers and it is amazing!! I would love to slim down as I am a MOH for my sisters wedding in 4 months!!!
    Thanks for your site! Great reviews!

  4. I would love a copy of this book, I’ve struggled with weight since puberty, and I’m doing my best on my own to eat well and exercise and using sparkpeople, but I would love any additional insight!

  5. I’ve always been interested in how the body works. This book sounds like it would be full of good info and it would definitely help me shed the last 10 pounds that I just can’t get rid of!

  6. I’m on Level 2 of the Shred now, and I am seriously loving it! I’m now officially a hardcore Jillian workout video fan, so I will be investing in her other two DVDs very soon.

  7. I’ve had to work hard to lose 15 pounds so far, and I have been officially diagnosed with Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome. I’ve been on birth control pills for over ten years to combat the PCOS. I think reading this book can really help me figure out what’s going on and find the right foods to eat to help it.
    Also, I had this book on my Christmas list, and I didn’t get it. 🙂

  8. I would love to read this book because I feel like I’ve plateaued in my weight loss – even though I still have 20 pounds to go! I would love to have tips for further adjusting my diet to be healthy, clean and good for my metabolism!

  9. Would be very interested in reading this. I’m having issues with my birth control messing up my system. If there’s something diet-wise that will help this I’m all for it!

  10. I love Jillian Michaels’ matter-of-fact workouts and would love to read her book – those last 10-15 lbs are always the hardest and I’d like to find out why.

  11. Hello! I’ve always been a huge fan of Jillian Michaels, and recently discovered a friend of mine has a hypothyroid condition. Recently I’ve become more interested in educating myself on how hormones can affect weight and overall health, and I think reading her book would definitely give me greater insight. 🙂

  12. Jillian is my idol. I have 3 of her DVDs and her wii game (all bday and xmas gifts) but have yet to read her book. I keep a photo of her on my fridge for inspiration. I love her attitude about life and working out. She makes me want to work out harder and be healthier. I would love a chance to read her book. I did her 30 day shred and was sore every day of it, but it was great. I built muscle and felt stronger, and it helped me get out of my workout funk.

  13. I would love to win Master Your Metabolism as this is something I’ve been fighting for years as well. I teach aerobics and work out a minimum of 4 days per week and yet I am still fighting to keep the pounds off. As I near 50, and no MD in the world can find anything physically incorrect, I know that there must be something that I, myself, can do. I think her book would provide some great insights into the same battle that I’m waging.

  14. I would love a copy of Master your Metabolism as I have so many health related issues (and surgeries and medications I had in the past) that over the years have thrown my metabolism out of whack. I have such a hard time even losing 5 pounds when I stick a healthy eating plan and exercise regularly. I would love to have this book as a way to help me figure out what I can do to me get my metabolism mastered once and for all.

  15. I’d looooove to read/win this book! over the past three years, I’ve lost 90 lbs (plateaued many times). I still have about 40 more to lose, and I’m sure Jillian could help me!

  16. I love anything and everything Jillian Michaels! I have battled my weight all my life and am just now getting to a point where I am tired of being tired and overweight. Thanks for the chance to win!

  17. Jillian is a rock star. I would love, love, love to check out her book – more so since I am too big of a wuss to get all sports bra’d up and go on The Biggest Loser for all the world to see!!

  18. My wife and I have been getting healthier over the last 3-4 years. She has been battling her weight all of her life. She has lost over 60 pounds, but seems to have hit a major plateau – she is still not quite into what is considered a healthy weight range and keeps trying. She monitors her calories in, eats plenty of protein and vegetables, and works out at least 5 days a week. She does everything from power yoga to gym workout to Jillian and Bob DVDs. I think Jillian’s book would be a great asset to her – to help her figure out what is keeping her from reaching her healthy weight goal.

    Thanks. Love the column (as usual).

  19. I’d really like to win this book for a few reasons. First, Jillian rocks and I want to get some more of her sassy health smarts. I’m also interested in what she says about the hormonesx, as well as in cleaning up my diet. Thanks for offering this!

  20. Thank you for doing this review. I have used all three of these products and they work wonders. While I can’t say I live by the rules in her book, I got a lot of tips that I use on a daily basis.

    I used both of the DVDs while I was training for a challenging hike to the highest point in TX, Guaudalupe Peak. I am probably in the best shape of my life. I lost about 25 lbs. and have muscles I never knew I had. Jillian rocks and I can’t wait for her new DVDs and books that will be out this year.

    Great interview!

  21. I love Jillian’s workout videos and use the two you reviewed plus the Shred and the new Last Chance Workout. I’m also looking forward to her Yoga video coming out in a week. Can you review that one too? I have read her Metabolism book (from the library) and would love to own it. I would like to try some of the recipes and re-read the book again.
    Thanks for this give-away!

  22. My weight has been a roller coaster ride all of my life – it’s up, down, up more, and never quite makes it back to my ideal.. Love Jillian, and would love to have this book for support along the journey!

  23. I’d love a copy of this — I’ve been fighting those fifteen pounds for years and nothing’s worked! Pretty please …

  24. I’m currently fighting the 20 or so pounds I’ve gained in the last year.I’m out of thyroid meds so I’ve gained it faster.But I’m into a workout plan now!!

  25. I have heard such wonderful things about Master Your Metabolism! I am in the process right now of listening to all of Jillian’s podcasts from her radio show. Love her so much. She talks about that book all of the time and I would love to read it!

  26. Okay, first, I love your DVD reviews! I have the Shred and No More Trouble Zones and 100% agree. I often get cocky with workout DVDs because I feel like I’m a reasonably fit person. But I almost died trying to do all three levels of the Shred in a row. Jillian put me in my spot, that’s for sure 😛

    I’ve been listening to Jillian’s old podcasts and she talks a lot about the stuff that’s in Master Your Metabolism. It would be awesome to finally read about it!!

  27. I definitely need to check out Master Your Metabolism. I am a hard core fan of Jillian and work out with her all the time…. BFBM and NMTZ are GREAT workouts, and I loved your reviews!!! It’s kind of funny, because I am so used to working out with her and her style, that it’s hard for me to make it through a workout with someone else. I recently discovered I have exerciseTV and their people drive me crazy with their peppiness, haha. Jillian gives it to you straight and tough…. I just wish she did more of the moves herself in the videos instead of walking around so much! She makes her poor friends suffer through it all! haha

  28. i would love to win her book! i have been struggling getting the last 7 pounds off my body. I love jillian and thinks she has great information for us all to live by!

  29. I have been eyeing this book for a really long time – never quite convincing myself to buy it. I’ve been battling my weight most of adulthood – and not been successful long term. I’ve never tried to battle my hormones. Maybe this is what I need. I hope I win!

  30. This book sounds like it talks about exactly what I’ve been dealing with lately! I love Jillian, firstly! And I’ve recently come off my birth control, which I think has been messing up my hormones (and, hence, weight) for the past 10 years of my life. It’s always boggled my mind because I’m very fit, but have an extra 25 pounds on me that just won’t go away. I’m also a scientist, so knowing the science behind it would really help convincing me!…Another great giveaway!

  31. I recently purchased “No More Trouble Zones” with JM and have never ever been as challenged as I have while working out with her. I don’t have any amazing weight loss stories or troubled pasttimes – I am just a regular girl who loves to work out. I am also training for my first half marathon in April so having options for my cross training days are very appreciative. I love Jill and her accomplishments and training methods are very inspiring to me. Thx for reading 🙂

  32. I’d been thinking of picking up the book for awhile. I had managed to gain 10 pounds when living overseas, and have been unable to lose it upon our return to the US. I already love watching Jillian on The Biggest Loser and have her 30 Day Shred video.

  33. I would like to win because I read Jillian’s “Winning by Losing” book and I would like to read one of her newer ones.

  34. Saw this in the bookstore and it was chock full of good info I never heard of. Would love to win Master Your Metabolism. Thanks!

  35. Jillian knows her stuff. Love her – would LOVE to win the book. Knowledge is half the fitness battle!

  36. Would love to win Master Your Metabolism. I just figured out that my healthy lifetstyle and eatting habits still are not cutting it. I can not get the 20lbs off.
    I need help!

  37. I too would love Master Your Metabolism because my hypothyroid condition has taken me from a willowy little wisp of a thing to a hard workin’ out, pristinely clean-eating pudgeball.

  38. I would love to win this too! I love Jillian’s exercise videos, so I’m sure that I would love this book too.

  39. I like to watch Jillian on Biggest Loser – she is tough but most of the people on this show need the motivation to stay on track and she gets the job done. Look whose team members have won most of the shows!! I would like to read one of these books to see how and what Jillian has to offer. I will be the first one to admit I need to lose weight and get back into shape.

  40. No one kicks my butt into gear just by opening her mouth like Jillian Michaels! I feel like every time I turn on Biggest loser, I want to jump up and run 10mi. I’ve read “Winning by Losing” and have tried her 30 Day Sculpt (LOVE IT – such a killer!), but I would love to have the opportunity to see (and listen to) more Jillian!

  41. I have already lost 74lbs and I am stuck. I want to loose that last 10-15lbs!! I need a kick in the pants!!

  42. I’d love to read this book! I’ve been trying to lose 20 pounds for the longest time by eating healthy and exercising daily…and nothing. I’d love to master my metabolism!

  43. I’ve read good portions of this book and it does have some super handy information. I really liked her section of “pick one from column A and one from column B” strategy to construct your meals. Gave me lots to think about and I can’t wait to read the rest of it.

  44. I would love to read this book because I have all of Jillian’s books and have her supplements but haven’t been able to buy a copy yet. She is AWESOME!

  45. I love Jillian Michaels. I would love to have this book so that I can lose these last 15 pounds that I’d like to get off! Help!