One of the things that has always motivated me to workout harder and better is a personal trainer. Over the course of years of gym memberships I worked out with trainers that helped me slim down, get strong, and work to achieve my fitness goals. Except that now, I am without a gym. Or rather, I work out from my home gym which consists of a treadmill, indoor bike trainer, pull up bar, CoreBody Reformer, a few free weights AND an Xbox and Wii.
Xbox? Did I really just say that an Xbox was part of my home gym?
Yes. I did. Several years ago I started using my Wii to get in a workout with games like Just Dance or Wii Fit. When xBox launched their Kinect programming, suddenly the range of motion and authenticity of the workouts became that much better.
If that was not enough, the new Nike + Kinect Training game takes all the motivation and fun of the Xbox Kinect, and adds the element of a personal trainer. As in a real trainer. That supports and encourages you. That motivates you.
You know…the one that you roll your eyes at or curse when you still have four pushups to go and you can barely move.
This digital training game had me hooked right away mainly because it feels so incredibly real. Other than the fact that I was surrounded my own furniture, the technology behind the game makes it so that you cannot pretend to do the exercises. It knows when you you are doing assisted push ups (as in knees on the ground) or when you are not squatting down enough. Not only does it know, but it does not count the exercises until you do them the RIGHT way.
You can choose from two trainers, Alex or Marie, (I chose Alex) who will suggest adjustments while you perform the exercises and congratulate you when you have.
Perhaps my favorite part so far has been the fitness assessment. (Ok, if I am being honest, that has been the only part I have done so far…but that would be because I was so sore from doing “just a few” squats and pushups during the assessment that I needed to let my muscles rest). Just like at a real gym, your trainer puts you through the paces to determine your current abilities, to check for areas of strength and areas that need more work, and most importantly….to serve as baseline data. It gives you two numbers: one for fitness (flexibility, strength, and endurance) and one for athleticism (power, speed/reaction/agility, and balance) with the goal of making progress and seeing those numbers change over time.
Now…here is the thing. For me, fitness is a process and journey. I am excited to workout out with my trainer, Alex three days each week so that in one month I can take my fitness assessment again and hopefully see a change in my fitness and athleticism scores. I aslo know that I cannot only workout with my Nike + Kinect Training if I hope to improve my half marathon performance at the Disney Princess Half in February or the Inaugural DC Nike half marathon in April (fingers crossed that I get in with the lottery registration). I am going to need to run, and run often. But in order to improve my running performance, I need to lose some weight. So I am hopeful that by sticking with the Get Lean program designed just for me by virtual trainer, I will get stronger but also lose some of the weight that makes my running harder right now.
Wish me luck! I have a bad feeling that my Nike digital trainer is going to push me beyond my comfort zone!
What about you? Have you ever worked out with a personal trainer or with a digital training game?
I received a copy of Nike + Kinect Training for the purpose of a review since I am trying to reshape my body and get strong again. (I would have bought this for myself or at the very least asked for it for Hanukkah!) No compensation was received. All opinions are my own.