Ab Circle Pro or Body by Jake? A $10 Alternative That is More Effective!

October 13, 2009

Ab Circle Pro sells for $199, Body by Jake Ab Scissor Ultra sells for $159, and the basic “old school” Ab Wheel sells for $10.

The ironic thing is that cheap little ab wheels are more effective than either of these over priced, yet wildly popular, ab machines. The crazy thing is according to the merchant, over 700,000 Body By Jake Ab Scissors have been sold to date.

Who knows how many Ab Circle Pro units have been sold, but it has to be a ton judging by all the recent infomercials on TV late at night or early in the morning.

body by jake ab circle pro

[Getting flat abs or a a six pack is mainly about diet. The Ab Circle Pro advertises that you do “Cardio & Abs at the Same Time”. Technically they aren’t lying, except that the type of cardio performed will do very little if anything to make a difference.]

I Wish I Had Those Advertisers on My Side (Not Really)

Advertisers are getting better and better. I was shocked at how many Thighmaster units have been sold worldwide. I have read as many as 10 million have been sold since 1988.

I don’t want to necessarily slam these companies for trying to make money, but are they really offering good value for the money? It isn’t that I’m against expensive pieces of equipment.

When I eventually setup a home gym, I will drop a $1,000+ just for an Olympic Bar, adjustable bench, and a power rack…but it will more than payoff over time.

Read This Before Buying Any of These Ab Devices

I am guessing that many people will find this post while researching the “Body by Jake Ab Scissor Ultra” or “Ab Circle Pro” in Google. Anyway, most of the reviews you see in Google towards the top of the page are from affiliates promoting this product…making money when you purchase the product.

I have nothing against making an honest buck online, but in this case, I wanted to save you some hard-earned money.

[Don’t think for a second that these professional fitness models got their defined bodies from these devices. To be honest I think the main spokeswoman’s abs are too defined anyway! I realize that she works hard, but I doubt most women want a mid-section like that.]

You Won’t Lose Weight Using These Devices

The infomercial you just watched was done by professionals…they know how to push emotional triggers in a way that makes you want to buy regardless of price.

The bottom line is that these devices will work your abs a bit, but do very little in the way of helping you lose weight.

Where the “Ab Circle Pro” Results Come From

This disclaimer on the testimonial page says it all…”The complete Ab Circle Pro system includes a reduced calorie diet and regular aerobic exercises…Participants ate a reduced calorie diet and did the Ab Circle Pro workout regularly.”

So in addition to the ab workout (which was suppose to be cardio at the same time as the ab workout)…the participants did extra cardio. They also reduced their calories. The diet is the real reason behind the fat loss and the cardio helped a bit as well.

The Ab Circle Pro played a very marginal role in the results you see on TV as well as the website.

$10 Ab Wheels Will Do A Better Job Tightening the Mid-Section

At almost any sporting good store or places like Sears or Target, you can find Ab Wheels. They range from $8-$100. Don’t go for the expensive ones…I have had a cheap little plastic ab wheel for close to 10 years and it has served me well.

The key with this simple piece of equipment is that your mid-section is doing all of the work, not the device. It doesn’t really need to be more complex than this. No need to spend any more than $10-$15 max.

ab wheel

[The cheap little ab wheel I have looks almost exactly like this.]

What About Those Fancy Instructional Videos?

Well, thank goodness for Youtube! You can head over there right now and see several examples of good ab wheel workouts. This gentleman does a good job of explaining form.

The main point is to make sure you don’t hyper-extend your back. I don’t like to crunch my abs hard at the top, but I do insure that my back doesn’t arch and that my abs are supporting the resistance, not my spine.

[You will see people doing these from their feet…I feel it is safer and just as effective to stay on your knees. It looks cool to go from your feet, but in my opinion you are asking for a back injury.]

I Use the Ab Roller As A Way of Doing an “Advanced Plank”

In case you don’t know what a plank is, here is a post I did explaining planks and an ab workout I have done for quite a few years: 7 Minute Abs? 8 Minute Abs? What About 6 Minute Abs? In fact…If you are a beginner, I would recommend doing this routine for a month before adding in the ab wheel.

What I like to do with the ab wheel is roll it forward a foot and hold that position for 30 seconds then another foot or so and hold that position for 30 seconds and just a bit further and hold that position for as long as comfortable.

I like to use it for tough static holds to generate serious tension in the abs. I do this maybe 1-2 times per week at home in addition to my plank workout.

No Need to Get Fancy to Lose a Bunch of Body Fat

Honestly…I know that this won’t sound as fun as those late night infomercials, but simply eat less. To find out exact eating strategies, you can go to blogs like this one and get a ton of useful info.

Find 4-5 good sites and set aside a few hours instead of watching TV and you can learn a ton of strategies that work. Again…if you are dead set on getting the “Ab Circle Pro” or “Body by Jake Ab Scissor Ultra”, you will still have to insure your diet is right.

If I can’t save you from spending $199…at least let me help you with your diet!

[Be careful when dealing with advertising! Here is a video of a fitness model who was a spokesman of Hydroxycut, admitting to using steroids to achieve his look…not Hydroxycut. I think his physique looks way too big and unnatural anyway…but I respect him for telling the truth. He was fired as a spokesperson almost immediately after stating this fact.]

Note: What do you guys think about me calling these companies out? Too critical? I don’t like messing with someone’s way of generating income, but I also don’t like seeing people spend money when there is much cheaper and superior alternatives.

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{ 62 comments… read them below or add one }

Samuel October 13, 2009 at 1:22 am

a long time ago i made one of these…it still works !!! great post !! Rusty !!

Mike Benson October 13, 2009 at 1:45 am

Right on track. Also worth mentioning is that Stuart McGill Ph.D that the repeated flexion of machines and situps leads to disc herniation. Bottom line: don’t use your back as a joint.

Fred October 13, 2009 at 1:49 am

This is AWESOME! Rusty, what effect does alcohol consumption have on fat loss? πŸ˜‰ I’m guessing partying gives you a truckload of health benefits (I’m talking about the fun/dancing etc part, not the alcohol). Totally unrelated comment I know but I was wondering…

Crue October 13, 2009 at 1:55 am

Your opinion is right on the money.

Too many empty promises & over-hyped products are being fed to the uninformed consumer.
It’s a real shame.

Γͺtre fort pour Γͺtre utile

danz October 13, 2009 at 2:01 am

Rusty, regarding your comment at the bottom of the the article; this is a blog, a site created by you to inform, educate and help people reach their goals. I know you have helped me for the past couple of years and I know I’m not the only one. I understand where you are coming from about ”calling these companies out”, but I think a lot of people out there would prefer a faster, proven and cheaper alternative to reaching their fat loss/fitness goals if it was available to them…. and you have always done that. If not, then its their choice.

Greeno October 13, 2009 at 2:05 am

Rusty, that last video…did you watch the whole documentary? very interesting stuff…especially the segment on supplements..i think its called ‘bigger, stronger, faster’ or something like that…so much BS out there for the unsuspecting consumer…

Aditya October 13, 2009 at 2:16 am

Rusty, I always put the planks and leg raises above this machine, infact any abs machine, like way above and I dont look at these machines at all. Like you said and you say diet is what gets you a six pack, I totally go by it. I got down from 18.6% of bfl to 9.7% bfl in 4 months time ENTIRELY by following the Warrior Diet the initial half and ESE entirely now. Initially, when I was at 18% of bfl I used to do HIIT like 5 times a week along with the diet. I think HIIT just speeds up the fat burning. I do HIIT for just a day every week and I still am continuing to lose the fat and yeah its a bit slow now. I have the toned abs but not ripped since I reached 9.7% just recently and I would have to stay at it for a month atleast. I am totally sticking to ESE and I eat Paleo for a week if I have to look a bit more toned. And yes, I swear by a superset of Planks and Reverse Inclined Crunches every other day. Eating Paleo every day is not possible for me. I only have it on the 3 fast days every week. And I enjoy my Beer and drunk munchies once a week. My friends dont know I am following ESE and they are always left confused when they see me eating and doing very less cardio haha! I will keep it a secret from them till I become ripped.

I have never tried these machines and I am sure I wont be needing this to be ripped lol. Anyways, I will give it a try since its coming from you.

Also, I have a question. If after an ESE fast I eat something with a high Glycemic Index, say a Baguette, will the effect of the fast get nullified? I am clueless about the insulin sensitivity after the fast and I really need to know more on this. Like, How High Glycemic Index food stuff effect after a Fast. Is the effect negligible or it totally nullifies the effect of a Fast, what happens to the insulin sensitivity and if it does get affected then what?

I know its always advisable to eat clean even while eating normal but since I do a 3 day fast while following ESE I think I am doing pretty much ok. Yes I eat a paleo meal during the fast days. So it can be said I eat clean 50-60% of the time.

Chris Highcock October 13, 2009 at 2:16 am

Nice post. THere is so much bullsh*t out there.

Scott N October 13, 2009 at 2:36 am

Same thing with the stupid P90X. Its at least better than doing nothing. But I hate how they try to sell the Muscle confusion BS. OMG I was doing bicep curls and I quickly switched to overhead presses. My muscles had no clue what was going on! Holy Crap! If you look at what they have laid out. All it is is a 1200 calorie diet for 90 days with some excercise. Just do that.

konrad October 13, 2009 at 4:00 am

I think it is good that you bring this up, way to much crap advertising to make you feel like you gonna acheve what they have. Man just look at there big barbarian jaws…. you can spot a steroid abuser easy…
But YES they do train hard and respectfully put in time in it.

Otherwise great that you bring up old school cheep things that work great and better than other expensive training tools.
And yes i have trained a lot body building and have changed my whole opinion regards training since i started to follow your tips.

Lean and small with muscles that are well defined is better and nicer then big and bulky Coleman.

Thanks for exposing stuff.

Rafi Bar-Lev at Passionate Fitness October 13, 2009 at 4:09 am


Are you trying to say that Chuck Norris didn’t become a karate legend from using the total gym?!?!?!?!?!

Noooo πŸ™


Kat October 13, 2009 at 4:14 am

I always thought about buying an ab wheel but never knew if it was necessary or just another piece of useless piece of equipment like in those info-mercials. There’s so much crap advertised its ridiculous what they try to pass off as worthwhile and worth your $$.
Question:can you use a stability ball much the same as an ab wheel?
I remember Craig B. doing something similar with one. Prob. can’t do the planks with the stability ball like the ab wheel, though.

Chris October 13, 2009 at 4:50 am

Couldn’t agre with this more. It just amazes me that people watch that stupid video and fall for it, but obviously it works. Why would that crazy swinging action suddenly give someone with fat around their abdomen a six-pack? Insane.

I think it’s right to call them out. Hopefully at least a small percentage of people who would otherwise be suckered into losing money “see the light” and read some of your other posts. Free advice and good potential for weight loss beats expensive and useless products any day of the week!

Steve October 13, 2009 at 5:03 am

Hi Rusty,

A short while ago I came across your site and since I think I’ve read every post you’ve written. It’s hugely educational and it offers an opinion I’ve been searching for for a number of years when it comes to fitness and muscle.

Anyway onto my point, you stated:

Note: What do you guys think about me calling these companies out? Too critical? I don’t like messing with someone’s way of generating income, but I also don’t like seeing people spend money when there is much cheaper and superior alternatives.

In my opinion, not enough people do this! This is important so let me say it again, In my opinion, not enough people do this! You have the education and many years of experience behind you, if people like you won’t call these people out nobody will. People like you and this post are almost like the balancing forces to the advertising industry. Nobody deserves to be sold crap that doesn’t work. It’s a real shame many people want to make a buck over helping someone become happier.

On an unrelated topic I found this video on youtube and think it fits perfectly with the whole ethos you have (and i share) about body builders using mass to overcome strength. Let’s see any body builder tackle these exercises:




Marc Feel Good Eating October 13, 2009 at 6:19 am

EVEN when you spell it out this clearly…….most will not listen.

Eating less is simple on its own, but…..if you hit the workouts hard….it brings on that appetite…… and that is were problem starts occuring.
Great post as always.

FitJerk - Flawless Fitness October 13, 2009 at 6:32 am

Hmm I duno man. See my principals are always bound to natural solutions, no drugs. (Some supplements are an exception, of course).

But I also hear what he’s saying… cuz he needs to make money. It’s straight up business for him since steroids are a HUGE investment, and now he’s basically making the profits back. It’s like investing a chunk of cash on the R&D of a product… accept the product here is his body.

The other problem is that people don’t know sh*t about steroids. Just taking steroids doesn’t blow you up. Most guys who I’ve known to take “juice” go huge naturally and then used steroids as a means of overcoming their genetic limitations.

You still need a disciplined training program and you’re still eating at a competitive level… something most people lack the will power to do.

This is an iffy subject. But as for the ab roller… hell yeah! It’s great. I got the PowerWheel which you can attach to your feet.

But that ab circle ad pisses me off, I got like 10 emails asking if I recommend it because of the BS “cardio and abs” combination. Bleh!

Can’t hate on their marketing department though. Those are some peeps.

Greg October 13, 2009 at 6:46 am

You’re right on target here. Advertisers appeal to the idea that people are looking for a “fix.” People, in general, want something easy and non-disruptive to their lives.

You can also note that most of those things have a disclaimer like “…when combined with proper nutrition…” or something similar. That tells the story.

DragonMatt October 13, 2009 at 7:32 am

‘The secret is the abs movements combined with the cardio…’ what an utter load of crap! Who IS that cheesy voiceover guy anyway.

Rusty, as always, its as if you have read my mind.

The first time I saw that ad. during a Saturday afternoon while chilling in Sydney, my housemate was, like, ‘whoa look at that!’.

I literally had to sit her down and educate her as to why those products are the biggest waste of time and money EVER!


I’ll tell you what it is Rusty, people see a gimmick and think that its the easy way to a good bod.

If people could just ‘control food’ instead of letting ‘food control them’, everybody would have a six pack! πŸ™‚

Thats enough ranting from me.

DragonMatt out!

mickieb October 13, 2009 at 7:42 am

I have the Ab Wheel, but the one with the foot attachment, so you can put your feet in to do it in reverse. A REALLY good way to strengthen up the WHOLE mid section!

And all these companies are out there to not only promote their products (in anyway they can), bc its business (money money) but they may actually promote a healthier way of living if the consumer is savvy enough to figure out the diet part and stick to it.

I have found that when I exercise, I want to eat more, but if I fast or diet and DONT exercise, I lose weight. I guess for me, my body wants to eat when I exercise, so I have to find the right balance of exercise and food consumption, so it balances out. Not an easy task!

But back to the advertising for these exercise products…as they say, “Let the consumer BEWARE!”

mindbodygoal October 13, 2009 at 7:43 am

Great post Rusty.

These types of products just make money off people looking for something other than hard work to get them results.

Makes me angry that they just add to the rest of the B/S out there and making it even harder for the average jo to track down what really works and what is a gimmick.

I have used basic ab wheels before, but find a barbell/ez curl bar with small discs on to be even better. That way, the resistance can be increased a little over time without the need to mindlessly increase reps.

Keith October 13, 2009 at 7:46 am

Great information and excellent videos!

Yavor October 13, 2009 at 8:02 am

I’m not against people making money, but the way those ads are done, they deceive people. It takes a lot of searching after that to find out THE REAL TRUTH about working out…

Levi October 13, 2009 at 8:57 am

I know people who have been buying every new ab gadget when it comes out, despite having no success with all the previous ones! So even if you turn some people away from these devices, some people will still be so intrigued that they purchase the infomercial devices anyway!

But back to the ab wheel – I love it! When I was a kid I used one that my uncle had made out of a broken broom handle and a used lawn mower wheel. I have since upgraded to the $10 yellow version (pictured in your post,) but either way, they work wonders!

Bruce October 13, 2009 at 8:58 am

Scott N

Have you used P90X or are your comments based on the infomercials? I recently finished 90 days on P90X and found it to be an excellent program and I will be using it again. I personally know half a dozen guys who have used P90X and they all were pleased with it. Search for P90X on Youtube, the number of positive videos is impressive. Also, the diet program is not just limit yourself to 1200 calories. Mark Sisson is a consultant to the company that created P90X – there are 3 different diet programs that in theory help you to get you to where you want to go and keep you there.

Frank Z October 13, 2009 at 9:03 am

i have no problem with you calling these guys out. sure it may mess with their way of generating income but theyy’re also trying to mess with our income and health.

Jeffrey343 October 13, 2009 at 10:27 am

I’ve never ordered one of these products, but I have sat through several infomercials. They definitely overemphasize the product but underemphasize the diet part. I wonder how much the diet is emphasized when you actually receive the product… Seems like it would have to be a LOT in order to get results anywhere similar to the folks in the ads.

There are so many good books on both fitness and diet available at both libraries and bookstores, as well as web sites such as this. The more I learn about fitness (instead of “winging it” – albeit with good results), the more I realize it is pretty darn simple. If you eat “clean”, do good strength training (actually use heavy-enough weights), and do reasonable cardio (HIIT or fairly intense steady-state), you’ll get much better results than any of the gimmicky products.

Scott N – I must say that the P90X is actually one of the programs that looks pretty good. It’s nothing that someone can’t put together on his own. But based on my limited exploring of it (just to see what it was about), it seems to cover all the basics I mentioned above.

Helder October 13, 2009 at 10:50 am

Unfortunately the fitness industry is a very ugly one, ironic i know, an industry that should be about health and beauty is a really ugly one.

I know that the purpose in any industry is to make money, but money can be made with the truth, and that’s where we find the line that splits wanting to make money honestly and being greedy making money with lies.

The lies and pocket rippers of this industry are all over the place, not just these useless devices, but the supplements industry hand in hand with bodybuilding and fitness magazines.

We also have bodybuilders and models lying to people, saying they use this or that when it’s a fetid lie, and the so called trainers who know it all and have an agenda to promote a product to a naif trainee.

Finally the gyms who sell useless supplements, who get trainees practicing everyday, sometimes more than one sport, claiming they need to do weight training, stretching, cardio, yoga, body combat, spinning, and body this, body that, body whatever, everyday paying high prices every month.

All this with no results except depression, people giving up and not believing in health activities, sometimes sickness and an empty wallet.

Thank God there are people like you Rusty, and some others who tell the truth to people, who try to keep fitness a beautiful place, a beautiful way of Life.

Dan October 13, 2009 at 11:17 am

I bought one of those wheels 8-9 years ago. It works great. My only issue is getting it back from my kids..they think it is a fun toy and do human wheel barrows with it.

Donkey Lips October 13, 2009 at 11:45 am

Keep Calling ’em out Rusty! It’s not a fair world we live in, people like yourself should have the millions that these advertisers and product pushers have. You are the guys that give good information and help people achieve their goals. So don’t feel bad, just keep calling them out and don’t let them rip people off. Then in the mean time figure out how to make an honest buck for yourself on all the knowledge you have and help you give to the people who read your sites.

Thanks again Rusty.

TonyK October 13, 2009 at 12:45 pm

Another great post Rusty! I can’t really add anything to what’s already been commented on by your readers because their comments are pretty much spot on. Calling out some of these bogus products is a good idea….just make sure you do it in a way where they can’t sue you. πŸ™‚

BTW, FitJerk, I loved your comments over at diet-blog.

Dave October 13, 2009 at 12:46 pm

Not only are you not too harsh for exposing these companies, I believe it is your duty to expose them. The double edge sword that comes with capitalism is that because of it’s highly competitive nature, companies are beginning to care less about whether the product does what it should and more about if they can dupe someone into buying it.
Our only defense against it is press (like you) to expose liars.
Hopefully, people will read your posts and not be a victim to con-men and snake oil salesmen.

Mark Vaughan October 13, 2009 at 12:56 pm

Never feel wrong for calling these people out. They are trying to make a living by providing relatively useless products at ridiculous prices. These people are taking advantage of massive marketing budgets, affiliate review schemes, planted lies and very fit looking ‘shills’ who would clearly sell anything they could to get there name out there. The ACE, in a study, showed that the Ab Doer was less useful than sit ups!! Who do you think makes the Ab Circle Pro? Do you think that it is as useful as situps? The product looks like a joke.
It is our obligation to loudly call out these people. If we don’t, who will? We should be tweeting all day about the relative uselessness of these products so that people won’t get the wrong impression about these items. Keep up the good work, I will be retweeting your post.


Mergs October 13, 2009 at 1:04 pm

I have been following your website for awhile and I love it. What are your thoughts on incorporating yoga or pilates as a woman to develop long lean muscles. I was a college bball player and developed a bulkier build due to our diet and weight lifting routines and I really would like to achieve the longer, leaner look. I have been doing TT training for the past year, but I am curious if you had any experience with yoga and pilates to achieve this look. Thanks!

Chris October 13, 2009 at 1:37 pm

Isn’t it interesting how many new gadgets and gizmos show up year after year that really don’t work? And yet people spend millions of dollars on them, use them a few times and then relegate them to the basement or closet. I think we need more unbiased reviews of those gadgets and gizmos, in an easily accessible place so people could read about the good, bad and ugly BEFORE they make that purchase.

Jon E. October 13, 2009 at 3:27 pm

No no no, not too critical Rusty! You need to save the innocent (slightly ignorant) American public who are smart enough to read your blog, from becoming even poorer and more depressed when they don’t get results!!

CR October 13, 2009 at 8:08 pm


I have a friend with the Ab Circle Pro and he and his wife are doing very well. I have the Body by Jake Ab Scissors and it worked beautifully for me when I didn’t want to get on the floor and do crunches. Both also come with a diet plan stressing a lean diet. Do I thin they are worth the price. Absolutly. They allow anyone to get to work on their abs quickly and with a sensible diet produce extraordinary results. Most people starting out are not ready for crunches and situps on the floor. In addition these devices control your form which is invaluable for rapid results.

The Ab wheel is hard and awkward. Correct form is also dependant on the user. Just my real life experience. If you have the money and space I would take the AB Circle or Body by Jake Ab Scissors anyday over the AB wheel.

Scott N October 13, 2009 at 9:30 pm


I have no doubt it works (FOR LOSING WEIGHT) but why pay 300 dollars for it.

P90X= Eat less + workout

Baz October 14, 2009 at 1:29 am

While on a low calorie diet I bump up my calorie intake every 3-4 days so my body does not get used to being restricted. I also want to try intermittent fasting like that in ESE 1-2 a week. Can I still do both?so I go low and very low on fasting days, then after a few days have a higher intake of calorie for a day. After some time I now know that my body will do everything it can to either prevent musle development when trying to build and prevent fat loss when trying to lose. I guess it doesn’t like change. With both a mixture of both low and high calories I can keep my body guessing and stop it from staying in maintenance mode. Does that sound ok?

Brad Campbell October 14, 2009 at 4:35 am

Hey Rusty- great blog you have here! Lots of good points you make in this post – if you’re going to waste money on any eqpt for abs, a simple ab wheel is the only investment you need (if at all).

I wonder if the new FTC rulings will affect these infomercials at all…I have an 81 page document but have yet to sit down and read through it all (it’s pretty dry to say the least). I know it may have an impact on testimonials, which is great news if you ask me…get the scammers out of our industry.

I don’t like talking trash about how another person or company tries to make money either, but some of this stuff is SO ridiculous and misleading….it’s no wonder the majority of ppl are confused and don’t know where to start.

Anyways, sweet blog you have here…keep doing your thing!

Brad Campbell

Bruce October 14, 2009 at 9:52 am

The retail price for P90X is $120 ( 3 payments of $40) plus $20 shipping. I paid a little over $100 since I paid for everything at one time. since the program has beesn so widely sold, you can find people re-selling the program on Craigslist. Why did I pay $100? For 2 reason, (1) It works, based upon the experience of my friends. (2) I did not need a gym to do it.

All programs are eat less + workout — but the devil is in the details.

Greg October 14, 2009 at 1:45 pm

There are other great abdominal workouts on Holosfitness.com. All workouts are posted by members themselves and include step-by-step instruction. There’s no such thing as a quick ab workout, as toning up any part of your body takes a strong commitment and often needs a lifestyle change. But its never been easier to get in shape and stay in shape thanks to online tools such as Holosfitness.com.

D.Spillett October 14, 2009 at 1:50 pm


Great post and I think it’s great you call out these companys. A local company(Bodybuilding.com) in my home town ( Boise Id.) was just raided by the F.B.I for selling steroids in the products.Keep it up!

Samuel October 15, 2009 at 2:34 am

exactly p90x does work,,,my goal is to get ripped an lean , and Rusty blog is helping me alot !!!!

Scott N October 15, 2009 at 6:58 am


I know it works, its just totally useless. Just like the other crap that works but is useless as well. Their gimmick is that the muscles need to be confused. They don’t.

Help me understand, what happens after 90 days? Do they just say do this all over again? Or do you have to buy P180X or something

Rounder October 15, 2009 at 5:57 pm

Hey Rusty, great posts..But I havnt read what you think about p90x or the Beachbody Insanity. I started with p90x but stopped because I think I was to fat for it (300 lbs) I hit the gym, cardio weights, I now weigh 230, so I started Insanity, which I think is awesome. Even the liitle bit I did with P90x I saw results, any thoughts??

Rounder October 15, 2009 at 6:01 pm

Scott, the reason I got p90x is becuase I didnt know what exercises to do. I agree that most home dvd workouts suck @ss, but p90x is good because it does work.

Scott N October 16, 2009 at 3:21 am


I can see if you’re just starting out, and need some guidance. I guess its better than nothing.

BTW, nice job with the weight loss. But I guess the point Im trying to make is for obese people, any non retarded diet and exercise plan WILL work. You didn’t lose weight because of p90x. You lost weight because you ate less and moved more! Tony Horton has an excellent marketing team, and just like most people trying to sell something he makes it too complicated. Yes, people are seeing results because he is just putting in practice what people already have been doing for the past 60 years. EATING LESS, MOVING MORE.

And thats why I still read Rustys blog, he advocates simple stuff that works.

Bertie October 16, 2009 at 9:12 am

I found this really interesting, I don’t personally want to take steroids and wouldn’t encourage people to do so, even so, he makes a few very apt points, and especially when he starts talking about the supplement industry.

saddam riaz October 16, 2009 at 2:45 pm

hi rusty how r u ur doin a great job buddy iguess ur the only person on the internet speaking the truth i want u to hav a look at this video and let me know what u think abt it he dont luk natural bt he calls himself lifetime drugfree bla blah lol plzz ill be waiting for your reply

saddam riaz October 16, 2009 at 2:46 pm

sorry frgot to post the link heheh here is it http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UIN3IkNsNfk&feature=channel

admin October 16, 2009 at 3:07 pm


I do have Stuart’s massive book…”Low Back Disorders”. It is one of the reasons I avoid crunches sit-ups etc. Good point.


I just think of alcohol in terms of calories. Obviously, I wouldn’t endorse drinking a lot and drinking to get drunk…but I am a realist too. I stayed out late and drank a decent amount on the weekends a regular basis from the age of 19 to about 27 (like many people do in that age group). I stayed lean by eating less calories during the week.


Yeah…people are always looking for an easy fix. Advertisers play on this desire.


Thanks. I do try my best to help people without wasting their money.


I did watch some of it. I may watch the full thing at another point.


You are getting amazing results. I always love to hear that! You can eat a high GI carb after the fast and still be fine. The main thing is to keep the meal at a medium calorie level if you are following Eat Stop Eat. The amount of calories matter more than the type of calorie in this instance. On the days you aren’t fasting and eating multiple meals, then try your best to keep insulin at stable levels for best results….bottom line, just eat paleo about 1/2 to 1/3 of the time and you will be fine.


I am going to ask you do a guest post on my site soon…long overdue, since Conditioning Research is one of my favorite fitness blogs.

Scott N,

I think P90X probably works well for people who want a plug-and-play solution to losing body fat. It is hard work like anything else. I don’t think it is necessary, but I also don’t think it is too bad.


I have no clue why people would want big rounded muscles that droop because of the mass. I’m glad you are avoiding that look now. You will age much better with at a natural size, with low body fat.


I miss those cheesy commercials. His toupee is bad!


You can use a stability ball as a way to make planks tough. Craig Ballantyne has a few good ab routines on youtube.


I am hoping this article gets ranked high in Google for the term Ab Circle Pro, just so I can give people a better alternative.


I love that video. I have seen it before…but very inspiring.


Yeah…a good balance of eating less and the right amount of intense exercise gets the job done. I need to head over to your site…it has been a while. I am hoping to see some pics of Florida, since we are in rainy season in Seattle now.


I haven’t tried the one you attach to your feet. I should give that a shot to mix things up…looks pretty effective.


Talking about proper nutrition never sells the product, but is the reason behind the majority of the results. Those advertisers are great at what they do.


Great points you made to your housemate. So many people don’t understand what it takes to get abs. You summarized it perfectly.


Yeah…it is all about eating “as if” you didn’t exercise to really make that exercise help to burn fat. Sometimes easier said than done.


That is a creative solution to use in place of the ab wheel. I have never heard of that before.


I have seen a lot of videos of people making their own…I actually think it is easier to just go out and buy them for the cheap $10-$15 range.


Thanks for the compliment. My main goal is to let people know they can stay lean year-round without being obsessed with fitness. They also don’t have to lose their sense of style. Some people feel they have to turn into gym rats to get fit…so wrong!


I remember playing around with one of these when I was little as well. Kids make toys out of anything…but since it has a wheel it is twice as fun!

Donkey Lips,

Yeah…I certainly don’t make the money these guys make, but I do feel good about helping people. This site is very rewarding for me. Have you ever seen “Pump up the Volume” with Christian Slater. I kind of feel like that. Just a small voice broadcasting info to people who want to listen (except that I’m happy, don’t smoke, etc)


I get a lot of traffic for a blog, but just a minute fraction of exposure of what these guys get. I will try my best to reach more and more people over time.


Thanks for re-tweeting this post. I really appreciate it. These ab machine commercials will become less and less effective as the internet becomes more social. Gotta love it.


I am now doing Adam Steer and Ryan Murdock’s “Body Weight Blueprint for Fat Loss” which incorporates “Prasara Yoga” along with body weight intervals. It is a more aggressive form of Yoga and it works very well. I was a big-time skeptic of Yoga until I began doing this type of Yoga. Overall I don’t think yoga on its own is the way to go. I think some type of yoga mixed in with more intense workouts will give better results. The type of yoga I am doing is quickly giving me better range of motion in my joints which is a great benefit.


Good point…I do see a lot of these type of devices being sold at garage sales.


I am glad that you are brave enough to go against the grain and give a different view point. Maybe there is a place for people who haven’t trained for a long time to get some benefit out of these devices. I guess my biggest complaint is that the models they show wouldn’t get abs like that from these devices…these exercises just aren’t challenging enough.


You can certainly do both. Sounds like a decent strategy to me.


I am jealous of your site design. That is a sharp looking blog (and I look over 100+ per week). I will bookmark and head on over in a couple of days…running out of time today.


Wow…bodybuilding.com was raided! Crazy. That is a mega-company. I will have to read up on this.


I had a friend who got P90X…it looked pretty good to me. I can imagine that people could get great results if they followed the program…it actually looks pretty rough! There are a lot of ways to get fit and P90X looks solid. Hopefully people who use that program can get even better results by implementing a few tips I talk about on this site.


abril October 27, 2009 at 2:20 pm

The only really good personal trainer who didn’t try to sell me crappy supplements and protein drinks after each workout, told me to use an ab wheel. I train on my own now after not being able to find a PT like him, but I sometimesuse the playground swing for a good ab exercise where the movment is sortof like an ab wheel. And it’s free.

shaun judy November 19, 2009 at 11:22 pm

Great post rusty..These videos are awesome! The ab roller wheel is great I use it in conjunction with Insanity/P90X.

Aaron Curl February 15, 2010 at 11:04 pm

The truth is, yo yo dieters and new years gym attendees need these products. Or, better yet, the companies target these people! The general population want a super easy “system” that will do all the work for them. So sad! If it were so easy to have great abs then why is America so overweight and obese?

Emily March 21, 2010 at 3:15 pm

I am 17 and I’m 5’7 and weigh 131 lbs I am not fat or anything but I saw the infomercial for the ab circle pro, and I was definitely considering buying one, not to lose weight but just to tone up what I have and I have to say with being a high school student with many extra curricular activities going on, the whole “three minutes a day” sounded amazing, but what sounds “too good to be true” typically is indeed, to good to be true, but luckily I decided to do my research, and look at the reviews for this machine and others like it. I had been to a few sites before this one and everyone seems to have the same opinion as you as far as you, concerning this machine. As far as I’m concerned, of course you were not too harsh, or even harsh at all. I could be wrong but I think you posted this to inform and to help people from getting ripped off. And you helped me from wasting my money on a machine that doesn’t provide results. And I’m sure I’m not the only person you have helped but even with helping one, well I say that’s something to be proud of. These advertisers are just trying to get rich quick and they don’t care if their product actually works all that matters to them is the profit they make. So I wanted to take the time to say thank you and assure you that you definitely did the right thing by posting this. Again thank you Rusty. πŸ™‚

Jason April 10, 2010 at 2:45 pm

Yo, P90X is awesome.

I am totally a fan of the at home gym.

Sick blog post, thanks!

bobsmith0227 April 14, 2010 at 11:26 pm

Best program I have ever found was right here http://get-ripped-abs-here.blogspot.com/ incredible stuff!

Mark - Look Sharp Fitness April 24, 2011 at 8:30 am

This post is golden Rusty! I have a couple of friends who had the Ab Circle Pro a few years back and I showed this article to them just to rub it in their face πŸ™‚

I have been thinking about getting an ab roller for quite some time now and this post made me go out today and buy one. Can’t wait to try it out!

Ron May 2, 2011 at 11:14 pm

I dated a girl who bought an ab glide. The first time she used it, she went “whish to the left, whish to the right, whish to the left, whish right into the table next to her and got a nice bruise and slight sprain on her knee. Next day it was returned, never to be seen again!

keep fit October 18, 2011 at 1:26 pm

The disclaimer says it all – all the data that follows is meaningless.

Niko - noexcusefitness November 27, 2011 at 7:49 pm

I noticed this post is a couple of years old. What’s making me laugh as I am surfing the interweb, with my laptop and I can see there is an ab circle pro tv advertisment on right now, lol….When will people learn?

Trevor June 25, 2013 at 4:58 pm

I love the ab wheel it works awesome and it’s only 1 payment of $9.99!. I still find it hilarious when I go shopping at a place like Costco and I see a couple trying out some machine you stand on and it vibrates to melt off the pounds…. And it’s $2,000 dollars..

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