Saturday Night Gamer: EA Sports Active

It's recently come to my attention that I've become a little pudgy. A little flabby. A little rotund around the middle. But rather than actually join a gym and burn that fat off, I thought I'd try and play it off with EA Sports Active for the Wii.

This isn't a complete review - I'm only two days into my 30 day workout. Fortunately the third day is a day off, because this thing actually gets you working. At least if you're slightly pudgy like me. Last night I was sweating like I'd run a marathon, when all I'd done was spend half an hour doing some low-impact exercises in front of my TV.

The game begins with having you set up your profile. Height, weight, age are all important here, so the game can (hopefully) measure your calorie burn accurately. Then you begin the 30 day workout.

There are three difficulty levels available. I opted for medium. On the first night, it involved a fair amount of running on the spot, a little bit of balancing on the Wii balance board, some lunging and some bicep curls using the included elastic strap.

For all the exercises, you'll need your Wiimote in your right hand and the nunchuk attached. There's a thigh strap that you put on and squeeze the nunchuk into for certain exercises, but it always needs to be attached.

Before you do an exercise for the first time, you'll get a video of your "trainer" doing the exercise so you can know what you're doing.

There are different exercises each day, although some do double up, and all of them are extremely low impact, so it's unlikely you'll really injure yourself here. That's not to say you won't feel it if you tend to not do a lot of exercise generally – you will.

At the end of your training session – both of mine so far have lasted about half an hour - the game encourages you to fill out a "journal" chronicling your diet and other exercise to better track your performance. It's probably worthwhile to complete this after each session, but I can imagine it will get dropped off pretty quickly for people without a lot of time.

As I'm only two days in, I'm still a little pudgy. I'm not sure I've lost any weight, and the amount of calories I've burnt off over two nights was essentially undone by the beer I had afterwards. But I'll persevere, and hopefully end up all the better for it. Stay tuned...

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