A Review of ICE Boot Camp Circuit–It’s Total Body Conditioning
Cathe Friedrich’s boot camp routines are my favorite workouts. Some days you just want to hit every body part and this is how you do it.
Guess what? You’ll see something in ICE Boot Camp Circuit that you might have never seen before. Cathe Friedrich doing push-ups on her knees!
Which means you’ll be doing push-ups on your knees. I know I just made your day. You’re welcome.
ICE Boot Camp Circuit won’t be the hardest workout you’ll ever do but it might be the most satisfying.
Here’s a peek:
Anyone can conquer ICE Boot Camp Circuit so I recommend it a lot.
You’re going to need a few things to do this program.
I’ll tell you exactly what equipment you need and what you’re going to be doing in Boot Camp Circuit from the ICE program by Cathe Friedrich.
Let’s get started…
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Category-Cardio + Strength
Cathe does the first half of the routine on 2 risers and then adds two more risers later in the program.
*Cathe also uses 12 lb. dumbbells in the workout. You can get those using the link above.
Check this out 👉 Your Ultimate Guide to Buying and Using an Aerobic Step
💥 If you don’t own any dumbbells and don’t know where to start then read this, A Woman’s Guide to Buying Dumbbells.
My rating- A
My Favorite Premix on ICE Boot Camp Circuit: Basic #2 (Warm Up + Main Routine + Muscle Meltdown -Biceps + Stretch)
Important Stuff about ICE Boot Camp Circuit
I love Cathe Friedrich’s boot camp routines. The pattern for these workouts consist of several intervals with four parts: a short cardio segment, a lower body strengthening exercise, an upper body strengthening exercise, and then core.
There are 6 groupings of exercises using that pattern. You’ll feel like you’ve hit every body part when you’re done.
The ICE series is marketed for the intermediate athlete. (ICE stands for Intermediate Conditioning Extreme.)
Honestly, the only differences in ICE Boot Camp Circuit and the other Cathe Friedrich programs I’ve done are the push-ups (she does some on her knees in this routine, which never happens in her advanced programs) and that there’s one team member doing a modified (easier) version of each exercise.
The modifier is Amanda (the girl over Cathe’s right shoulder) in this workout.
Cathe uses the aerobic step as a tool for some of the cardio intervals but the moves are simple repetition with no choreography to learn. Anyone can do these exercises.
I love the outfits (color combos and the style) for Cathe and her team in this routine. I know that seems trivial but it matters. Thank you, Adidas.
The ICE series has the on-screen prompts just like Cathe’s Xtrain Series. This is SO helpful. The name of the exercise as well as what weight Cathe is using is shown on the screen for you before each exercise. You’ll love this feature.
Remember to read to the end of this post for links to a few places you can compare prices on this video as well as tips and advice for mastering each exercise.
The warm up is about 6 minutes long. You’ll need a step with 2 risers in this section. There’s no stretching during this segment but you’ll get the blood flowing to every joint and muscle group.
Main Workout (The Exercises in ICE Boot Camp Circuit)
Remember every section (grouping) has 4 parts (cardio, lower body sculpting, upper body sculpting and core) to it.
I’ll tell you what you’ll be doing and what tools you’re going to need.
You’ll be doing a PLUNGE LUNGE off your step (with 2 risers).
Lower Body Sculpting
ELEVATED LUNGES with 12 lb. DB’s. There are 16 reps on each leg. You’ll have one foot on your step behind you and do a static lunge while holding the DB’s at your side. Try to go down to 90 degrees with each rep.
Upper Body Sculpting
TRICEP OVERHEAD EXTENSIONS with 10 lb. DB’s.
There are changes in tempo during the set. Listen to Cathe’s prompts so you know what to do.
You’re going to need a mat (unless you’re on carpet) to do this move. The core exercise in this first grouping is a crunch with your knees tucked up to your torso. Cathe calls these HEEL-TAP CRUNCHES. (I call them neck-lockers.)
The cardio exercise is a STRADDLE JUMP on the step with 2 risers. There are 3 sets of seven.
MARCHING SUMOS with one 8 lb. DB. You’ll make two 360 degree turns (one to the right and one to the left) holding that DB at your chest with two hands.
PUSH-UPS on your aerobic step (with 2 risers on each side). There are several sets. You’ll alternate between doing these on your knees and up on your toes.
If you’re familiar with Cathe Friedrich workouts then you’ll know she can do a LOT of push-ups. Seriously, she’s genetically engineered for them I think. Doing these on her knees is something I’ve never seen her do and is definitely a step in the Intermediate direction from her regular workouts.
The core exercise in this grouping is fun. It’s called a SINGLE ARM SWIMMER STROKE. You’ll need a mat because you’ll be in a low plank (on your elbows) and you’ll alternate ‘swimming’ one arm around like you’re doing a freestyle crawl in the water.
Don’t let your torso rock too much when you circle your arm. Keep everything rock solid.
STRADDLE JUMP WITH BURPEES on your step with 2 risers. There are 2 sets of seven. Keep your core really tight when you shoot your legs out for the burpee.
BACK LUNGES OFF THE STEP with 10 lb. DB’s. You’ll still be using your step with 2 risers for this exercise. There are 8 sets of triple pulses on each side.
OVERHEAD PRESS/UPRIGHT ROW superset with 10 lb. DB’s. Make sure you stay with the team during the set. Cathe uses changes in speed (again) to keep this challenging. Immediately after the overhead presses, you’ll go into a set of upright rows with the same weights.
The core exercise is done standing this time. You’ll be doing SIDE BEND CRUNCHES holding one 15 lb. DB. There are 16 reps on each side.
Now you’ll add that 3rd riser to each side of your step for UNEVEN SQUATS over the step. Cathe tells you the pattern as you go. The segment is short but you’ll be winded.
Get 12 lb. DB’s for STEP UPS. You’ll use your step with 3 risers. There are 13 reps per side. Stay with the team. The tempo is slower than you want it to be.
The next upper body exercise is good ol’ fashioned BICEP CURLS with 10 lb. DB’s. She stops before it gets too hard so do every last rep. Don’t be a wimp. You’re awesome.
The core exercise for this grouping is a FORWARD SWOOPING LUNGE WITH A TWIST. You won’t need any equipment.
I’m not sold on this exercise. I’ve done this routine about 5 times now and I still don’t really ‘feel’ anything when I do this move. I do manage to stumble around a lot, though. You tell me, what do you think about the forward swooping lunge with a twist?
The cardio move is a ONE-ARM BURPEE on your step with 3 risers. There are two sets of 8. Make sure you do the vertical jump at the top of each rep.
CROSS-BACK CURTSEY LUNGES with one 15 lb. DB. You’ll do 15 low-end pulses on each side followed by two sets of 7 low-end pulses.
Warning-The step is really high. Be prepared for that drop when you ‘curtsey’ off the side.
Grab two 5 lb. DB’s for LATERAL RAISES.
Don’t get cocky and grab a heavier weight for this one. There are a lot of reps and the set is long. Five pounds will get it done.
Get your mat out for L CRUNCHES. I was already familiar with this exercise when I did ICE Boot Camp Circuit the very first time (maybe you were, too) because Cathe has used it in another workout.
This is why I kind of dreaded it when I saw it because in the other program it makes my abs contort into a burning spasm where I actually scream out loud and roll up into a ball. However, don’t worry. She makes the L crunch easier to swallow in this routine (by doing less of them).
STEP KNEE DOWN TAP WITH A LIFT on your aerobic step with 3 risers (per side). If you’re familiar with step aerobics you’ll know exactly what this move is, if you aren’t then that name may sound like gibberish.
All you need to know is that this isn’t hard. You’ll need a little bit of coordination but that’s it. The height of the step makes this much more intense than it looks.
The lower body exercise this time is a DROP SQUAT OFF THE END OF YOUR STEP with one 15 lb. DB. There are 16 reps on each side. Stay with the crew and keep your core tight.
ONE ARM WIDE ROW with one 15 lb. DB is next. There are 16 reps per side. Make sure you do this with proper form. Cathe gives you tips about that. Listen to her. There’s no point in doing this stuff if you do it wrong.
SQUATS WITH A KNEE TWIST holding one 8 lb. DB is the core exercise. You’ll know when you do this right because you’ll feel your core engage. Try not to swing the weight but just move it to the side (as one unit with your core). Look at Jai (she’s in blue) she’s doing this one perfect.
The stretch/cool down is about 5 minutes long. Don’t skip this part. It’s a good one.
What do you think about that music? Is that a piccolo? I’ve heard worse cool down music. It’s just different. I can only imagine how hard it is to figure out what music to use in these workout videos.
I really like the entire ICE series.
Boot Camp Circuit in particular is one of my favorite workouts because you get cardio in addition to sculpting every major muscle group.
I avoided this series for way too long (because it was marketed as an Intermediate workout). Don’t make the same mistake I made. Go buy this one.
You can find Boot Camp Circuit in several places:
- Cathe’s site
- Collage Video
- And remember you can access ALL of Cathe Friedrich’s workouts (300+ routines) with a membership to Cathe on Demand.
Thank you for reading.