10-Minute Workouts that WORK

Courtesy of bestbuy.comCourtesy of bestbuy.comDana Meltzer Zepeda, SELF magazine

If you're anything like me, finding time to exercise is a constant juggling act between work, friends and family. Thanks to my hectic schedule, working out has become my only "me" time, so I was thrilled to discover these brand-spanking-new, 10-minute fitness DVDs from Anchor Bay Entertainment.

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There's obviously a vast selection of exercise DVDs vying for your attention but, unlike the usual suspects, these gems can be squeezed into your day in short intervals before you get dressed, during your kid's nap time or after you arrive home from a busy day at the office. We checked out the labels latest offerings--Latin Cardio Dance Party and Pilates.

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I am not a dancer. Let me repeat: I. Am. Not. A. Dancer. In fact, I'm so self-conscious about busting a move, I refused to have a dance floor at my own wedding. But the idea of a quickie workout was too enticing to pass up so I recently popped Latin Cardio Party into my Blu-Ray player and decided to let loose in my bedroom. Yes, I stumbled a lot at first but, since there's three different segments--Samba, Cumbia and Reggaeton--so I knew I wouldn't have to hang in there for long . Surprisingly, the more I danced, the more fun I had. Granted, I felt a little silly when I glanced in the mirror but, ultimately, I got a great workout in less time than it usually takes me to make dinner. By the time I finished, my heart was racing and I felt less stressed than when I started. Would I do it again? If I'm pressed for time, absolutely. But, until then, I think I'll stick with my regular yoga routine.

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I've been a longtime fan of Pilates so I was anxious to try this DVD. There's a resistance band included in the box (bonus!) so I didn't even have to buy any equipment. Each 10-minute segment targets a different muscle group--shoulders, core, arms or abs-- allowing you to mix-and-match your routines or create one customized workout. Instructor Lara Hudson's instructions were clear and easy-to-follow which made test-driving this DVD a total breeze. Yes, I felt the burn in my legs, arms and core but, since I've done private Pilates and group reformer classes before, this is a great alternative for days when I'm pressed for time.

THE SELF VERDICT: Skip the Dance Party if you're clumsy, but definitely go for the Pilates.

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