Hands up who’s heard of Pamela Reif? Thought as much. She’s the German fitness influencer dominating the YouTube workout world, and her videos rack up as many as 45million views each, with millions also viewing her workout plans. Why? Where do we begin.
Despite the fact she’s not actually a qualified personal trainer, Pamela Reif clearly knows her stuff, her workouts can be done anywhere (no gym required), by anyone, and she’s cemented herself a loyal following (8.5million on Instagram, to be precise) who are always keen to share their results. From fat burn to more energy and better sleep, they’re solid results too, so it’s hardly surprising that everyone’s keen to get in on the action.
Fitness blogger Keltie O’Connor was also intrigued. She attempted her own Pamela Reif workout plan and spent one month following her choice of Reif's home workouts to find out what all the fuss is about. Here’s everything she learnt, plus her results.
1.There’s something for everyone
At the start of her journey into the world of Pamela Reif, O’Connor explains how there's everything from beginner-friendly workouts to hardcore fat-burning classes available. O’Connor opted for the classic 45-minute sessions.
‘I just did the 45 minutes as I’m not looking to burn fat. I did some of her dance ones in general but it’s more just about staying fit for me, so that was the one that I picked,’ she says. So, there’s options for every ability. A solid start.
2. She’s big on motivation
Another round of applause for Reif. O’Connor’s quick to point out that Reif does something called ‘Motivated Workouts’. Essentially, the workouts include more than just instructions on what to do and put more of an emphasis on motivation – think encouraging words throughout.
‘There’s a tonne of us, me included, that have talked about how to stay motivated, but I’ve never seen the concept of a motivated workout,’ she says.
3. There’s something new to do every week
Pamela Reif’s known for her ‘abs workouts’, but O’Connor is keen to assure us that’s not all she does: ‘Every week it’s something new, but you can revisit her old ones too so it doesn’t get as stagnant, which is a nice little added touch.’
4. There are no gimmicks
The fitness industry comes with its fair share of misleading info, from workouts claiming to give you ‘abs in two weeks’ (spoiler: not possible), to brands exaggerating their product benefits, and O’Connor wants to highlight Reif’s honesty. She doesn’t make big claims, and she listens if her followers aren’t feeling the benefits.
‘She just engages with her followers,’ she says. ‘There were times she’d ask what everyone wanted in tomorrow’s workout, and I just think that’s so rare.’ Amen to the realness.
The moment you’ve all been waiting for. Before sharing her own results with us, O’Connor shows the results sent in by some of her followers who also took on the challenge. ‘Everyone was talking about how they got stronger, that they felt more joy in their workouts,’ she says.
No matter how the routines were modified (no single person did the exact same Pamela Reif workouts throughout the month), everyone saw positive changes. Here. For. That.
O’Connor didn’t see any physical results, but explains that she wasn’t surprised, since the workouts didn’t push her out of her comfort zone.
‘All these at-home workouts are 10-30 minute bodyweight exercises in different ways, so that’s why my body’s not going to change,’ she says.
‘At-home workouts are all kind of the same. They’re all moving your body in different ways for 10-30 minutes. Ideally you don’t want to do it in a way that kind of hurts you, but you should always check in with your professional once in a while.’
Our two cents? We're not about the whole 'no pain, no gain' approach, so we're not saying that you go hell-for-leather until you can no longer walk, but pushing yourself is certainly where you'll see progress - whether that's feeling more out of breath than usual, or doing an extra set or rep. And we're right with O'Connor when it comes to speaking to a professional. Always check your form and technique is correct, and never prioritise speed over accuracy.
Pamela Reif’s teaching style. ‘She’s super inviting and beginner friendly, anyone can do it with the modifications,’ O’Connor says.
The workouts can be done wherever, whenever. O’Connor explains how ‘you can follow them individually or you can follow her plan, so you can have that flexibility if you’re someone who just wants to pop one on here and there.’
Pamela Reif’s relatability. ‘There are a few videos where she keeps her bloopers in. She’s honest about things on her social media like bloating, her bad days, when she wants to work out, when she doesn’t,’ O’Connor says, adding, ‘she’s relatable and goals all in one.’
Pamela Reif’s responsiveness. ‘It’s so nice, she’s genuinely always there in her DMs and that is so rare I feel in this day and age.’ We feel ya, Keltie.
One con from O’Connor is more of an observation than a con: the workouts aren’t personalised. As a result, they won’t be as effective as a plan that’s customised to your body, but that’s only to be expected from a free at-home workout, right?
O’Connor raps up the video by talking about the most important thing she learnt from the experience: finding a trainer you like to work out with. ‘Find someone you enjoy. If you want a community, Chloe Ting’s community is to die for. Madfit’s videos are fun and have a playfulness that I really enjoyed.’ As for Pamela, ‘You get to talk to her the most,’ says O’Connor.
‘It comes down to which program you like most – the music, the moves, the personality of the person you’re following and that’s going to make you keep coming back to it, or, try it for a month, get sick of it, try another person. It’s free – try them all.’ We concur.
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