5K Training + Ramona Braganza 321 Method Level Two DVD Review

Hey there! Happy Wednesday to ya!

So…I finally signed up for a 5K in August and I’m excited about having a goal to work towards. However, I haven’t actually set any time goals for myself yet because I’ve convinced Brandon to join me and he’s been a tad inactive over the past few years months so we’ll have to see how it goes over the next couple of weeks.

I’m using a training plan that I found on Self and we knocked out our first (1 mile…woo hoo!) run on Monday.


We walked for a mile and then ran a second one with a pace of 9:46. I was really hesitant to share our time with you because I didn’t want anyone to be jealous but I figure transparency is the best way to go. Winking smile

There’s also a 10K in Napa in October that I really want to sign up for but hotels there are outrageously expensive around that time. I’m going to look around and see if I can find a cheap deal otherwise running through the vineyards is not happening.

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As for the strength training part of the plan, I’m going to be using Ramona Branganza’s 321 Method Level Two DVD.

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I really enjoyed doing Level One for a few months but it’s always fun to mix things up so I started doing Level Two about a month ago and I really like it!

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Like Level One, it uses Ramona’s 321 Method which includes three sets of cardio, two strength training circuits and one core.

However, Level Two is different from the first one in that instead of running outside or on a treadmill, she provides three short cardio segments that you can do at home without any equipment. And for the strength circuits, all you need is a chair, a stability ball and a set of dumbbells.

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The first cardio segment, Hip Hop Till You Drop, is taught by Milo Levell and it’s a quick and easy dance routine that lasts about five minutes.

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This segment is low impact but does a good job warming up your muscles. It’s also a lot of fun and Milo is sure to make you smile!

From there, you move on to Circuit A which is the first strength training portion of the workout.

In Circuit A, there are three different compound exercises (meaning they work more than one body part at a time) and you do twenty repetitions of each. After completing one round of all three exercises, you take a short (45 second) break and then move on to complete two more rounds for a a total of three.

What’s great about Level Two is that Ramona also incorporates unilateral exercises (meaning you only work one side of the body at a time) which require you to engage your deeper core muscles for stability. Two birds with one stone…win.

Each strength training exercise has two different options, some of which work different muscle groups so I like to follow each option separately, two days a week.

The one legged chair squats shown below (girl in pink) are super hard! I haven’t quite mastered it yet but I’m hoping to get better with time.

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After that you move on to the second cardio segment which is a short kickboxing routine taught by Ramona. There’s a lot of punching, jumping jacks, and a few sets of squats and it does great job getting your heart rate up!

Next up is Circuit B which includes a new set of three different compound exercises (as well as more unilateral training), and she has you do twenty repetitions with three rounds total, just like Circuit A.

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I really love the moves in Level Two, they are so efficient and work you in all of the right places.

Ramona states in the DVD that the workout focuses on strengthening the glutes and hamstrings in order to help with low back pain that comes from sitting at a computer all day. She also mentions that it helps to work some of your upper back muscles as well to help improve your posture.

After doing it for just one week, I was not only sore all over but I really did notice a difference in my back. I often get lower back pain so this workout felt great for me.

The last set of cardio is another dance routine called Get Your Sexy Back. You guys, I can’t do this one. I’m just not coordinated enough! I tried once and gave up. I guess I won’t be getting my sexy back. Sad smile

Lastly, there is a core segment that consists of three different core exercises and you do two rounds of each.

I took the liberty to demonstrate one of my favorites core moves from the DVD called Jackknives:



It is actually really hard to stay balanced on that ball and there were quite a few outtakes that weren’t pictured here.

So, that’s it…you get a full body workout in under 45 minutes!

It is a seriously efficient routine and I love all of the new compound exercises I learned from it. I’m excited to see how much stronger I can get over the next five weeks leading up to my 5k!

And of course, my warm up always starts with a nice long walk for my Cocobutter!

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Are you signed up for any races this year?

What training plan are you using?

What do you do to strength train?


Disclaimer: I was not compensated or provided with any free products for this review. All opinions are entirely my own!