Cathe came out with the Hardcore Series in 2005. I think it was an answer to Tony Horton's P90X. She developed her own workout system that had Gym Style workouts to really focus on the muscles divided over 3 days plus separate workouts for low impact step (Low Max), high impact interval step (IMAX3), kickboxing (Kick Max), core workouts (Core Max), a total body muscle workout (Muscle Max), stretch workouts (Stretch Max), and a high step circuit workout (High Step Challenge).
I remember being SO EXCITED for this series because it came after two other dvd sets that I just loved (the Intensity Series and the Body Blast Series). I was in Hawaii with my grandma when they were shipped and had to read reviews on the Video Fitness Forum to see what they were like. Slowly the reports came in about top notch workouts, as before, but the hitch was the music. It just wasn't that good. So if you're picky about music, this might not be the set for you, but if you like faint techno music or don't mind adding your own or dealing with the music not being a big part of the workouts, this series has some gems.
Today I did Muscle Max and it hits every muscle group with either the barbell, dumbbells or the stretch band (or all 3). It's about 70 minutes long, but there are a few pre-mixes that are shorter. There's a Timesaver that is 56 minutes long (probably just cuts out a few sets), Upper Body Only that's 42 minutes, Push/Pull Upper Body at 33 minutes and Lower Body Only that's 23 minutes. This workout is light on the time spent with the lower body, but believe me, it's not light on the lower body work! Cathe works you hard with low ends and pulses with heavy weights. You'll feel it later on throughout the day. I'm sure I'll feel it more tomorrow!
I'll review some of these workouts individually later on, but here's a sneak peak at Muscle Max. My favorite of Cathe's background exercisers is Rhonda Davis and she's in this one. She moved away from New Jersey to Georgia a few years before this was filmed (2001 actually), but flew back to be in a few of the workouts (I think this one and Low Max -- I'll have to check on that). You can see her on the cover of Muscle Max in the periwinkle top on the left. In the workout, she's in the back on the right. I just love how she always smiles and wears dangle earrings. She's also taller than the other women and usually has an extra riser in step workouts (which this isn't, but I just thought I'd add that anyway :)). TTFN!