6 Weeks to 6 Pack Review

Today is the dreaded day I post pictures of myself from the Jillian Michaels: 6 Week Six-Pack DVD. I have a lot I want to say and it’s all jumbled up in my head so please bear with me! Here we go!

6 weeks 6 pack

I completed the entire 6 weeks, which was VERY hard for a couple of reasons:

1.) It was hard. This DVD is NO cake walk! I got sweaty, tired, and sore, especially in the beginning.

2.) I got bored. There were two levels, you do one for 3 weeks then the other for 3 weeks. I literally had the whole DVD memorized by the end and was so tired of the same thing over and over.

What got me through it? You guys! And promising myself I could buy a new swimsuit if I finished but that’s neither here nor there….So ya..I knew if I didn’t tell anyone I was doing this, I could easily quit. But putting it out there in the blog world for everyone to see really held me accountable!

If you didn’t read my “First Glance” post, I would go check that out before reading any further.

Did you read it? Ok! moving on!

Ok, so, the DVD called for 5 times a week. The first 3 weeks on level 1, then the 2nd three weeks on level 2. I did not follow this exactly, so here is what I did.

Week 1: the first time I did this DVD I was SO SORE the next day there was no way I could do it again. I actually only did half of it (she goes through the circuit twice on each level) so there was no way I was doing 5 times this week! So I chose to do the video 4 times. The first two I did it only one circuit through. I also didn’t use a weight. There are two backup dancers with Jillian in the video, one does the “beginner” version and one does the “advanced” version. The beginner in level 1 doesn’t use a weight, so for week one, I used no weight.

Week 2: I did the level one video all the way through 4 times, and I used a weight halfway through the week. I was still a little sore but not as bad as week one.

Week 3: I did the DVD 4 times, and this week was hard for me because I was getting SO tired of level one! I wasn’t getting sore anymore which was good and made me realize I AM getting stronger if I am not sore after doing the same workout.

Week 4: I was SO HAPPY to move on to level 2…until I did the workout. It was SO HARD! I all of the sudden wanted level one back again, it seemed like a cake walk compared to this nonsense! I did the workout half the way through (one circuit) the first day, with no weight. The rest of the week I did the DVD all the way through with no weight, doing the DVD 4 times. I was sore again, which made me happy knowing I was working for it.

Week 5: I added in the weight, and did the DVD 5 times. It was still hard, but not impossibly hard. bobby even did the workout with me a couple of times which made it more fun.

Week 6: I was so glad I was on my last week! I was getting SO BORED and ready for this to be over! I knew I could do anything for a week, so I pushed through it and did the DVD 4 times the last week. I was finally DONE!

Here are my thoughts on the DVD:

Level one has the most mat work/ab work. You do a couple of cardio intervals, but my abs were the most sore with level one. When we moved to level two, there were more cardio intervals and a lot more lunges. My IT band started getting sore from all the lunging. My abs were not that sore on level two, but my calves, butt, and quads were very sore with level two.

RESULTS: Did I get a 6 pack? no. Did I expect to get a 6 pack? no. What did I get? I got a lot stronger! I have never been very strong, never did a lot o strength training, and I think my running has suffered because of it. My core is VERY weak. All my doctors told me this, my chiropractor has said this, so it was no secret. I really wanted to build a strong core, and I can honestly say YES it is a lot stronger! The few runs I have completed since the DVD have been a lot faster and easier. My legs don’t get tired as quickly and I feel they are easier. All those lunges helped I am sure!

What about the physical results? The physical results are there, but not as much as I thought they would be. I lost one and a quarter inches off my hips and one and a quarter inches off my waist. I can definitely see definition in my abs running parallel down both sides of my stomach. It’s really hard to tell in the pictures, but trust me it’s there! So no 6 pack, but better definition and much much more strength in abs and legs.

*gulp* here are my before and after pictures. My hips have ALWAYS been my problem area. I have always had a relatively flat stomach, small waist/upper body, but have always had wide hips. Please be kind…this is the first time I have “exposed” myself like this on my blog.





side by side…

2011-03-15102726 2011-04-26081048

RELATED: Get my free set of fitness and goal tracking printables! 

Here is an after shot in swimsuit bottoms, they fit differently than the workout pants I have on above. The pants above are tight so they kind of push the fat up if that makes sense ha! Ignore the lines on my stomach from the jeans I had on!


before and after with the second shot…

2011-03-15102726 6 weeks to 6 pack

Not sure if you can tell, but there is definitely some definition in my abs in the second shot, and my hips are visibly smaller. So did I get results? yes, they just were not what I thought. I had more running results than I imagined and not as much physical as I imagined. Will I continue to do the video? For now, I will probably do it once or twice a week through swimsuit season.

Do I recommend the video? Yes! it was a great workout, but if you plan on actually following through with the plan, know it takes a lot of dedication and be prepared to get bored with it. Ideally the video would have had 3 levels so you only have to stay on each one for two weeks at a time.

Did I do any workouts in addition to this 6 weeks to 6 pack DVD? Yes. I ran 2-3 times a week, 3-4 miles each time. I also took several walks, and did a LITTLE bit of additional strength training (mainly arms) maybe once a week. I didn’t change my eating really, but was more mindful of snacking and eating late at night. I am going to step up my cardio, work on my eating, and continue the DVD until I go on vacation in a month, and I MAY take one more set of after pictures just for curiosity sake.

So…there you have it. If you have any questions about what I did or didn’t do, or the Jillian Michaels: 6 Week Six-Pack DVD in general, please feel free to e mail me at runningwithsass AT gmail DOT com, or leave them in the comments.

PS: Looking for a way to keep track of your workouts and fitness goals? Get my FREE set of printables to keep you on track!

QOTD: Have you done this workout? Did you get better results than I did? Thoughts on the workout/plan/results in general? Can you tell a difference?

Get Your Free Printable Set!


Sign up to get my free printables on goal setting & fitness tracking.

Powered by ConvertKit


  1. Great post, thanks so much for sharing!

    I’ve definitely learned that I can’t do any workouts that work only part of my body or are super repetitive. In fact I rarely do the same lifting workout twice as I’m just easily bored!

    I think your core does look stronger but of course the most important improvements are the ones that you can’t see but you can feel 🙂

  2. Great review!
    I am not sure I could have done it for the whole 6 weeks (BORED city!!) I run as well, and need to keep my weak core in shape. I am glad you could tell a difference in your running performance due to the core being stronger!!
    I love the pictures. You have a great shape and look awesome ( before and after!!)
    The results you gained are CRAZY!!! Nice work!

  3. I can definitely see a difference in the before and after and you look great (not that you didn’t already look great in your before. 😉
    I wish I could be as disciplined as you but I’m trying….and I love the blog too. Keep it up 🙂

  4. Cool write-up! I have the 30 Day Shred and No More Trouble Zones… the latter makes me sore, so I can imagine that this one is much of the same.

  5. I think the after pictures looks different form the before. Just on a side note, and i hope you don’t mind me saying so, but you have a great waist! When i first started exercising when i was 12, I did it ALL with fitness videos! I havent seen those videos in over 10 years but i guarantee if i saw them today i would still be able to recite all the words by heart! Great job on sticking with it!!!!!

    • thanks so much!
      I have always been oddly shaped….very small upper body but mucu bigger (2 size difference!) lower body.

  6. I am really not a big fan of exercise dvds, except for Insanity. I started doing it a few weeks ago & I can really feel & see my body changing.

  7. Look at that tiny waist! You look gorgeous. I find boredom the biggest challenge with dvds. Good for you for sticking with it!

  8. You look GREAT before, but I can definitely see a big difference in the pics- great job!!

    I can recite what she’s about to say before she says it too lol. Sometimes I actually like the repetitiveness and knowing exactly what to expect, but most of the time it is boring lol. I need to do it more though, I don’t even do it 4 times a week right now!

  9. Great job pushing through! I can see a difference, too! I think I should check out this DVD. My midsection has gone down the tubes lately for sure. I can’t even blame it on the baby since he’s 18 months now. I blame it on work. I’ve never had a flat stomach though, so I will always be poochy. I don’t really have time for a DVD, though.

  10. Thanks for sharing I have been so curious about this dvd…. I need an ab workout I can stick to and I think this might work! Great job sticking with it your abs look great, you definitely deserve a new bathing suit!

  11. You are so faithful! I don’t think that I would have the guts to post pics. Because, honestly, I have too much gut! But you have been an inspiration. I ran my 3 miles early this morning.

    • great job on the run!
      I have never posted pics like this before, def not like me, but I wanted to be honest about my results, which is scary but I like being honest 🙂

  12. The strength of our core is incredibly important- that’s why yoga is so great! Thanks for the review of this DVD. Very interesting, and I wouldn’t mind doing this, but not every day.

  13. Oops. I meant pilates, not yoga. but yoga is great too:)

  14. Congrats on finishing! I honestly have never gotten through a whole video program in my life b/c I get so bored. 🙁 And I can definitely see a difference in the photos!

  15. Thanks for sharing about this DVD! I have been working on Ripped in 30 and also took before pics – so I can understand your anxiety on actually posting them! However, if my after shots look as good as yours – I have nothing to worry about! Now you will be able to fully enjoy your vacation – on the Mickey boat!

  16. I’m not surprised about the 6-pack results (sounds like you weren’t either), but that’s exciting that you experienced measurable running results! Plus, any definition improvement is better than none!

  17. Congrats on finishing!! You have way more willpower than me, I would have never been able to finish. I did the 30 Day Shred, but by the end I was definitely ready to be finished. I own the 6 pack abs DVD but I’ve only done it a couple of times – it’s hard! I decided (at least for me) Jillian DVDs are meant to be done every once in a while to mix it up, not to do consistently every day..

  18. You look amazing, girl! 🙂

  19. I think she looks good 🙂

    Good job on sticking with your commitment.

    • You think she looks good no matter what! lol

      I agree with him, though….you look great and I can definitely tell a difference! Way to go, girl! Congrats on sticking with it all the way through!! :0)

  20. I definitely see a difference, wow! Although I have to say, you look great in both pics!!

  21. How long a workout is the video per session? Not that I wouldn’t mind a firmer mid-section 🙂 but I’d also be very in the improvement in the running… I do some sit-ups and 5lb weight stuff now 2x week but this sounds more intense… were you doing anything in the way of strength & toning prior to doing this video or just running?

    • they are 30 minutes long. I was doing some strength training for my arms and legs here and there, but not often, and def. not any abs!

  22. I attempted Jillian’s 30DS DVDs and got bored by week 2… But then, I don’t do well with any type of DVD workout.

    I think you can really tell the difference! You look great!

  23. You already had a flat stomach but you look more toned!!! Thanks for the review and you look fabulous!!!

  24. You have such a tiny little waist girl! And you can see the difference in your hips, you looked good before too. Go strut that bikini, you deserve it lady.

  25. First off, you look amazing in both the before and after shots!

    Second off, congrats for making it through all 6 weeks. I tried, I really did- but I got way too bored!

  26. Congrats Heather, and thanks for posting this! Inspiring me to get going with my ab work. You looked great before, but I can definitely see the difference. Great job! 🙂

  27. You should definitely not be ashamed of your hips before or after! Thanks for the review.

  28. toniche says:

    there is definitely a difference in the before and after picyures. wow. i’ve just ordered my dvd now!!!!

  29. hello,
    great for sharing your review. So basically it doesn’t help in building the abs as far as i can see. Just a little definition that’s it

  30. Wow, I do see a difference and this post has given me motivation to stick it out! Thank you 🙂 and great job!

  31. Awesome review! Very useful!

  32. Quite late chiming in here ! I just wanted to try out the 6 weeks DVD and was looking for online reviews before I begin. It helps keep me realistic on what to expect. And yes, based on my experience with JM, it takes me a couple more weeks longer than what is advertised to see the results.

    Btw, You really look amazing in those before and after pics. But if it really bothers you, you can try out her Killer buns DVD. Just one watch of her 6 weeks DVD made me go ‘ACCK, I can’t see myself doing this’, but reading your review is inspiring me to give it a try anyhow. Thanks!

  33. Urvashi Jain says:

    Wow! I didn’t realise that my running is getting better because of these workout sessions.
    But now that you mentioned it, yeah!! I can run at a sustained pace for much longer and I get no aches and pains either.
    I am doing the 30 day shred thrice a week six week, thrice a week. That ways I don’t get bored. I feel a lot stronger plus I’ve knocked out the mood swings and extra pounds.

Mentioned elsewhere:

  1. […] tried out my new swimsuit I allowed myself to get after completing my 6 weeks to 6 pack DVD. I knew I wanted a basic black swimsuit, but every store I went to had cute bottoms, but no cute […]

  2. […] end of April also FINALLY marked the end of my tedious 6 weeks to 6 pack program. I post before and after pictures as well as my final thoughts on the […]

  3. […] I feel awkward in a swimsuit in public no matter how I look. This is why I was PETRIFIED to post my before and after 6 weeks to 6 pack pictures! I don’t feel I am where I would like to be as far as the “firming up” goes, so I have put a […]

  4. Rock On | says:

    […] did level 1 of 6 weeks to 6 pack too. I honestly haven’t done this video since May when I completed the full 6 week program. I got SO burnt out on it, I didn’t want to even look at the cover of the DVD box! I also did some […]

  5. […] in six weeks. Supporting their conclusion is Heather, who shared her before and after pictures on her blog. Heather saw results, but she did not have a 300-esque six […]