XTrain With Cathe Friedrich

Thanks for your feedback on yesterday’s review post for my February Ellie outfit! Remember you can get 20% off your first order by clicking here.

Firstly, Cathe is the new Kathy. Seriously, I just LOVE the spelling of that name. I had to get that out; I love when classic names are spelled uniquely (for example I know a Karan and a Carin…sorry to all Karens, but they win).

I’m a self-proclaimed gym rat, but I’m also armed with an arsenal of home workout DVDs that come in handy for those situations when I can’t get there because I don’t have time or am buried under over a foot of snow. Unfortunately since I live in Connecticut, that latter situation presented itself to me this past Friday when the five-or-so inches of snow we expected turned into a blizzard that kept me off the roads. Pro: no work! Con: can’t get to the gym! Enter the Cathe Friedrich XTrain Workout Series. As usual I’m going to be a Wordy Wendy in this review, but you can scroll to the bottom of this post if you’re in a rush and just need the bottom line version!

I’d heard of Cathe the fitness phenom before but had never tried any of her DVDs until I received the opportunity to do so through my position as a Fitfluential Ambassador. The 9-disc set came with an incredibly detailed User’s Guide, which I studied (like any nerd would) to decide which disc(s) would be the source of my Snow Day cardio.

The best accompaniment for #fitfluential studying is a matching #fitfluential breakfast!

Along with every disc’s workouts (and every workout’s moves), the XTrain user’s guide also contains info about Cathe, the “theory” behind the 30-90 day program, nutrition and diet tips, basic how-to for those newer to fitness (rep tests to determine the best weights for you to use, identification of equipment, etc), and many different ways to follow the program. For me fitness programs can be triggering (too many “shoulds”), but for those looking for a structured workout plan, Cathe’s guide gives plenty of options of varying focus, difficulty, and length.


I spy pink Reeboks!

The guide made it easy for me to select Disc 9: Tabatacise as my Snow Day workout. Not only did its description promise varied cardio tabata intervals with a bonus core workout, it was also the length I sought (almost an hour) and used the least equipment of any DVD (a step). I didn’t even have that, but knew I’d be able to improvise.

I popped the DVD into my laptop and was shocked by the different workout options offered on just this one disc! One can choose to do every tabata workout, just one, or any option in between. That includes bonus core workouts and rep challenges! All five tabatas plus one core workout was a bit less than an hour, so I chose that mix, but endless combos exist to fit anyone’s desired length and/or intensity. Lots of choices are KEY to me when I work out, and I think the same can be said for anyone, no matter where he or she is in a fitness routine. Those still trying to make fitness a habit will never get bored and will stick with it when they have variety, and the experienced bunch will always be able to find a new challenge.

The step was only used during the recovery blasts at the end of each tabata, so I didn’t have to do too much modifying and the moves were easy to do without a step. I do wish there was less equipment required on all the other discs…I feel like someone without the equipment would possibly have to spend some extra money to use the XTrain series to its fullest potential, and I’m sure it’s no coincidence that Cathe sells all that equipment on her website! However modifications can always be made…for example, by using paper plates or felt instead of Slide N Glide discs.

The classic post-workout sweaty #PROOF selfie (in my new Cascadian Farm tee)!

Despite the lack of a step, I totally loved Tabatacise and got in a GREAT cardio/core workout that did not feel as if it lasted almost an hour! The proof is in my sweaty tee pictured above…and my smile! The tabata moves can be done anywhere (unless you have lots of fragile shelved items nearby…LOTS of jumping!) and have given me some great ideas for hotel room workouts that I may need to improvise in the future. The music during the workout was good too – though I missed a gym class’s pumping volume (Cathe was definitely loudest, which makes sense), the songs were familiar top 40 remixes.

The Bottom Line


  • Options – I already explained above why those are a good thing for people at ANY fitness level. Also, you can purchase specific DVDs of the set if you aren’t able to purchase the entire thing or if some of the series DVDs don’t match your current fitness goals.
  • Not just for cardio queens – Cathe concentrates on strength training on plenty of the discs, and even busts some strength-training myths in the user guide. I’m all for spreading the weight lifting love!
  • Not just for planners – someone like me who doesn’t want to actually use the XTrain series to follow a specific fitness plan can just do whatever workouts on whatever discs I’m feelin’.
  • Cathe herself – great energy and she’s pretty inspiring!
  • Effective workouts – I can’t stand popping in a workout DVD, getting to the end, and realizing that the workout wasn’t what I was expecting or didn’t challenge me. I don’t think that would happen with this set!


  • Heavy reliance on equipment – as I mentioned, not a single disc has zero equipment requirements.
  • Price – I’ll be the first to admit that I would not spend the $120 on the full 9-disc set, because at this point I have a heavily-used gym membership and am not looking to follow a strict fitness plan. But for someone who works out at home a lot and needs a plan to keep on track or reach a fitness goal, that $120 could be a reasonable amount to pay.

Right now Cathe is offering free shipping on orders of $50 or more and there’s nothing that pisses me off more about online shopping than paying for shipping…so maybe now is a good time to try XTrian for yourself! I can’t wait to keep checking out the DVDs (I believe I’ll need another home workout option this week!) and will be sure to keep you guys posted on Instagram and/or Twitter as to what I think!

Have you ever followed a specific fitness program, or are you more of a free-for-all person like me?

Have you tried any of Cathe’s other workout DVDs before?

Do you prefer workouts that do or do not use equipment?

I received the XTrain DVD series free of charge through Fitfluential. This is not a compensated post, and all opinions are my own.

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