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Working Out with Jillian Michaels

February 25th, 2009 by Rebecca Harper Editor

Jillian Michaels has made a name for herself as the no-holds-barred team trainer on NBC’s The Biggest Loser, where she whips contestants into shape over the course of several weeks of competition. Michaels recently teamed up with Exercise TV to create a series of mini-workouts that are designed to add a little boost to your exercise routine. Below, she answered a few questions from Hulu about her own exercise regime, what it’s like to work with The Biggest Loser, and how to incorporate these workouts into your daily routine.

Hulu: What made you decide to become a personal trainer?

Jillian: I have a passion for utilizing fitness as a tool to rebuild people’s lives because my life was transformed by my martial arts instructor, who helped me to heal myself physically and emotionally.

What are your secrets to keeping so fit? What gets you motivated to exercise?

No secrets. Years of studying diet and exercise. I count calories. I detox my environment and foods as much as possible. The quality of my calories are premium. I supplement with vitamins and minerals. When it comes to exercise, I have many different techniques I apply, but mainly variety and intensity keep me ripped when I need to be.

What’s it like training the contestants on The Biggest Loser? What are some of the challenges you face? How do the contestants inspire you?

It’s the most heartbreaking and the most meaningful job I could ever dream of having. I deal with all their physical and mental baggage — which can get VERY heavy physically and energetically. That said, when the contestants start to find themselves as the layers strip away, it is the most amazing and rewarding experience.

Your mini-workouts give us your secret to burning the most calories throughout the body. What is it? How does it work?

The secret it a combination of high intensity intervals, or timed bursts of intense cardio. Body weight training for lean ripped muscle that isn’t bulky. Peripheral heart action (PHA) to drive blood back and forth between the upper and lower body in order to maximize heart rate and shed fat. Compound movements and hybrid lifts that utilize multiple muscle groups simultaneously to burn as many calories as possible and promote functionality, i.e. a tight core. Metabolic training and plyo for fat shedding.

What kind of moves do these exercises incorporate?

Mostly body weight moves with variations.

Should we plan on supplementing these workouts with any other exercise? Changes in diet?

Diet is critical. You must count calories and avoid processed food in order to achieve the desired results fast. If you do the workouts, but you overeat and eat crap, then your body won’t gain, but you won’t lose either.

How often should we perform these exercises? How long until we see results?

Four times a week and within two weeks at the latest. You should notice a difference at the end of week one!

As always, remember to consult your physician if you are new to exercise.

Rebecca (),
Editor, Hulu

Last comment: Jul 8th 2014 7 Comments
  • Hurrah, that’s what I was exploring for, what a stuff! existing here at this website, thanks admin of this site.

  • Channon says:

    hi, I didn’t know where to contact you but your web design layout looked rearranged on firefox and internet explorer. Anyways, did you see this weeks episode?

  • jess says:

    Hey jill I just want to thank you for everything you do. You are a true inspiration.

  • Patsy says:

    great video… I will be incorporating into my daily life… thank you!

  • Rashmi & Lisa says:

    Dear Jillian, You are an inspiration to many. We are currently doing your 30 day shred video and I can’t believe the results! Thank you for doing what you are doing.

  • SeawayOutset says:

    Seems like a great video. Now, do you really expect me to watch this on my laptop?

  • Syber Raith says:

    Thank you Jillian,

    It’s always good to experience a new personality in the field of exercise.

    The only thing I have to add, to your videos, besides time and effort, is that some of us heal more slowly than others. So, two or even three days between workouts are necessary to fully heal the consequences of the last.

    Good oxygenation, circulation, and muscle tone add so much to our existence, it’s beyond words…

    Thanks again,