The Gym Buddies and I having a little fun with our first T-Tapp workout. Note: this is NOT supposed to be a demonstration of good form or whatever. It’s just us being silly. Skip to 1:50 if you want to see me get my sexy back;) Thanks to Allison for secretly taping us and editing this vid! I WILL get you back, girl. (If you can’t see the above video in your reader or email, click through to my site.)
Between the butt-slapping, oil-welling and hoe-downing, you would think that these past few weeks of T-Tapp were all fun and games (and, not gonna lie, it had some really funny moments) but I also learned a lot. My Experiment ran from October 17 to November 13 and I did some form of T-Tapp every day. Usually it was the 45-minute “total workout” but sometimes it was the basic 15-minute version. Gym Buddies Megan, Allison, Krista, Beth, Jenn, Jeni, and Jess joined me for the last two weeks. In addition to reading her book (twice) and watching all the DVDs, I also tried all the sample workouts on Teresa Tapp’s site including the ab workout, the diva derriere and some others. I say this not to brag but to say that I did my best to really do this program the way it was intended to be done. This is important because as you may recall, Teresa makes some interesting claims and big promises in regards to the power of T-Tapp. So how did it all work out?
The short answer: It was both better and different than I had expected but it was not the magic mummy-tummy bullet I’d hoped it would be.
The long answer:
Claim: T-Tapp “pumps the lymphatic system” to eliminate toxins from the body
Verdict: Mostly true. There was some debate in the comments section of my first post about whether T-Tapp can really “pump the lymphatic system” to eliminate toxins from the body as Teresa explains in her book. I originally wrote that this struck me as pseudo-science but upon further investigation it seems there is truth to this. The first thing I learned is that it’s actually called the lymphoid system - huge apologies to my college anatomy professor! – and it’s an integral part of our immune system. The purpose of the lymphoid system is to gather the toxins from various parts of the body via your lymph nodes and transport them to the kidneys or liver where they are then filtered out of the body. Because the lymphoid system has no direct pump to move the lymphatic fluid, it uses gravity and the contraction of skeletal muscles to do its work. So the more you use your skeletal muscles – like, say, while exercising – the more you’re helping your lymphoid system clean your body. Yay, another great reason to exercise!
Whether or not the T-Tapp exercises are better than other exercises at doing this I can’t say, however. One study that I read seemed to think that rebounding (exercising on those mini-trampolines that look so pants-wettingly fun) is the best exercise for your lymphoid system because it involves the use of gravity more than less bouncy exercises.
Also, I’m not sure this is related but Megan had an interesting (TMI) discovery: “I will say that my poops have been awesome these past couple of weeks!” She then went on to describe them in greater detail but I decided to spare you guys. So you’ll just have to trust me when I say that Dr. Oz could make Megan his Poop Poster Girl.
Claim: T-Tapp can help you “lose up to 2 dress sizes in 4 weeks” and you will lose inches in 2 weeks
Verdict: It didn’t work that way for us. I did it for a full month and didn’t lose any inches anywhere except for 1/2 an inch off my boobs and frankly I want that back. I also may have gained 1/4 inch on my waist but I should note that girly hormones were wreaking havoc with me this past week and I’m lucky the bloat was only 1/4 of an inch. A wide variety of Gym Buddies of varying body types and fitness levels tried the 2-week “bootcamp” and none of them lost inches or dress sizes either. Megan says, “I didn’t lose any inches (maybe a 1/2 inch from my pecs & bust, but it could just be that I was wearing a different sports bra.)” and Allison adds, “I went up 1.5″ – Belly and up 1″ – Chest. Everything else stayed the same. Overall I am up 2.5″, not cool!!!!” Everyone else stayed the same.
However, I don’t want to say that it won’t work for you. First, it was a good workout (more on that in a minute) and I think if you have no fitness base then doing this program could get you pretty radical results. Second, we may not have been doing it properly. This felt like a program where form is everything and while I did watch all the instructional videos I’m sure I would have done better with in-person training.
Claim: T-Tapp will give you that below-the-bellybutton flat tummy that so many women have trouble with.
Verdict: Not true for us. All of us that tried it have had two or more babies and have the war wounds to prove it. And our pooches are still there in all their stretched-out glory. Sigh. I really really wanted this one to be true.
Claim: Everyone can T-Tapp
Verdict: Absolutely true! I don’t know that I’ve ever come across a workout before that is tough enough to challenge me and yet has zero impact. Not only that but it requires no equipment. Pregnant, disabled, injured, elderly, obese, frail – pretty much anyone could do this workout. It’s that gentle. I think this was my favorite thing about this workout.
Claim: And yet it’s tough enough to challenge anyone
Verdict: Mostly true. I was surprised; it wasn’t wussy. Just try this: Stand with your feet hip-width apart. Bend your knees until you can’t see your toes. Tuck your butt (like you’re doing a pelvic thrust, yes). Roll your shoulders back and down with your thumbs pointing out. And then rotate your quads slightly until your “knees are over little toes.” This is the basic T-Tapp stance and I guarantee that if you stand like that long enough it starts to get burn-y. (Seriously, stand up right now and try it. Yeah you might have to explain to your boss why it looks like you are humping the copy machine. It’s worth it.)
In an effort to make it a little harder and speed it up a bit I took out all the breaks between exercises which meant we basically held this position for 30-40 minutes. Ouch. Says Allison, “I thought the workout was tough. I had to take some much needed breaks in order to be able to stand otherwise I would have collapsed to the floor. It was a nice change up from our weights and it was fun to do, i’d definitely do it again sometime.” Let me remind you that Allison back squats over 200 pounds. Girl does not have weak legs. I personally really liked the lunge sequence as it had you work your muscles through their entire range of motion and not just in a contracted position. (Does this mean that if you aren’t super tough it will be too hard? No. Like I said, I took out all the breaks between exercises. If you do it exactly as the video instructs I think anyone of any fitness level would be able to do it.)
Weirdly, even though some of the workouts – like the diva derriere – hurt like crazy, we were never sore the next day. I don’t know what this means.
Claim: T-Tapp can cure cellulite
Verdict: I don’t know. My cellulite is still there and as you may remember I really don’t care. For some reason cellulite has never bothered me. Plus I didn’t do the body brushing technique Teresa recommends so I don’t think I’m qualified to speak on this point.
Claim: T-Tapp will help your posture
Verdict: Total success! Saturday night I was at a church meeting when my friend leaned over and said, “Wow, you sit up so straight! How do you do that? You have like perfect posture!” And you know what? I DID! I hadn’t even realized it nor had I been specifically trying to sit up straight but I think all that time rolling my shoulders back and down and tucking my butt paid off! Beth noticed this effect too. While she didn’t lose any inches off her tummy she did say, “I felt like it made me look and feel leaner.” And this folks is why you want to stand up straight:
Confession: Even with all of my experience trying out different workouts and knowing everything that I do, I still in my heart of hearts hope that I will someday find the “magic bullet” that will give me perfect health, happiness and thighs. And I’m always a little disappointed when programs don’t live up to all their hype.
I was super excited after reading all the testimonials both in her book and from comments on my first post to try T-Tapp. But this wasn’t a miracle workout. At least not for me. It had things about it I really liked and I can see us working it in from time to time but this wouldn’t be my go-to workout. There isn’t enough variety for me. That said, however, I really do like the posture help and I can see myself doing the “Primary Back Stretch” move and the 15-minute workout a couple of times a week. Megan agreed saying, “ I did like that I felt a good stretch from it. My back and hamstrings get pretty tight, and doing the Primary Back Stretch in the morning seemed to help get the kinks out.”
So that’s my really long write-up on T-Tapp! (Two loooong posts in two days – I’m sorry! I swear I’ll keep it short tomorrow!)
Do you have a secret to good posture? Any of you still secretly hope you will someday find the magic fitness bullet too, even when you know better??
Giveaway: I have one copy of the Total Body workout along with some other DVDs (lectures, form guides etc.) to giveaway. I’d really like it to go to one of you who is really interested in trying this out and not someone who’s just kinda curious. I’d also love it if whomever wins it will keep me posted on their progress and what they think of it! So if you’re interested in trying this out, leave me a comment below telling me why this would be good for you!