A friend of mine lost 65 pounds recently. She didn’t join a gym or sign up for a local

5-k. She did stop drinking soda and buy a few workout videos. Can video workouts work for you? Are video workouts worth the price? Absolutely, but only if you choose videos well and actually use them.

The benefits of workout videos

Even if you have a gym membership workout videos can be a good addition to your fitness routine. These videos offer:

  • Variety – one enemy of weight loss is adaptation. Adding a video or three to your current routine will mix things up and coax off pounds when the scale stalls because you have hit a plateau.
  • Privacy – have you ever wanted to try Zumba but worried your two left feet would have you tripping instead of gliding across the floor? If so, even the thought of witnesses probably kept you away from a class. A workout video lets you practice in the privacy of your home. Even if you go left when the video instructor says go right you will still get a good workout, minus the embarrassment.
  • Time-savings – When your schedule becomes so busy that you just can’t make that drive to the gym, you can still exercise with a video. These technological fitness tools can also give you more control over your fitness schedule. If you only have ten minutes in the morning and another 20 or 30 at night, it is okay. Class will only start when you press play.

Choosing a workout video

A workout video can make or break your exercise routine. Here are some tips to help you get the video that works best for you.

Increase your chances of choosing the right video by consulting friends and online reviews. The best instructors are motivating, reputable and easy to listen to. Sometimes, small things like the sound of an instructor’s voice, the music or the quality of the video can be off putting. Don’t let anything about the video you choose turn into an excuse not to exercise.

The video you choose will also depend on what you hope to accomplish. You might want to:

  • Burn calories
  • Have fun with fitness moves
  • Increase flexibility
  • Lengthen and tone muscles

Be sure the video you choose is appropriate for your fitness level. Many videos offer modified steps or routines for beginners.

Consider trying before you buy. When you find a workout video you really love – spring for it. As your collection builds you can switch out as needed. That way the opportunity for a good workout is always close at hand.  Achieving or maintaining fitness already comes with a few challenges. When you can make it convenient, you get rid of a challenge or two. The bottom line – workout videos are a good investment in your long-term health and fitness – just ask my friend.