I Tried Grow With Jo's Walking Workouts & I'm Obsessed

You'll do a whole lot more than get some steps in.

Originally Published: 
An honest review of the Grow With Jo walking workouts.
Getty Images/MilosBataveljic

Walking workouts are definitely having a moment. From the hot girl walk trend on TikTok to the 12-3-30 treadmill routine, folks are all about these easy low-impact, equipment-free exercises. And honestly? Same. It’s why I knew that I had to try the Grow With Jo walking workouts the moment I spotted them on the Internet.

The Grow With Jo YouTube channel, created by personal trainer Johanna Devries (aka Jo) is chock full of walking workouts that fit perfectly with today’s confined times. The idea is that you walk in place to get some steps in and reap the benefits of the OG fitness modality without having to step outside or hop on a treadmill. Jo’s walking workouts usually range from 20 to 30 minutes, which is equivalent to trekking one to three miles. You don’t, however, just march in place the entire time.

Each workout includes a mix of different exercises like side reaches, front kicks, and squats, as well as fun wavy-arm moves akin to something you’d do on a random Tuesday while dancing in your living room. You do each strength move in bite-sized 30 to 40-second intervals before marching in place for 20 seconds as your break. Throughout each workout routine, you’ll get through about 25 of these heart-pumping, muscle-burning moves.

At first, you might be fooled by how easy one of these videos is to follow. But add it all up and you get a surprisingly tough HIIT-style workout — with a little bit of strength training — that leaves you positively drenched in sweat by the end. I decided to put the workout to the test: Read on for my genuine thoughts on the Grow With Jo exercise routines.

Trying Grow With Jo’s Walking Workouts

First and foremost, I want to say these workouts are fun. Devries has this amazing attitude that makes you want to keep going, even as sweat pours into your eyes. She dances and hypes you up in an at-the-gym-with-your-best-friend type of way. And the upbeat background music she chooses is a good fit, too. It transported me to my cardio dance class days — back when going to a packed gym was a thing.

Jo’s workouts are also apartment-friendly. Because they’re all about walking in place, I didn’t have to move any furniture to make room for burpees, or shoo my dog out of the way while I shuffled about unpredictably. And because none of the moves involve jumping, I didn’t fret about annoying my downstairs neighbors.

It was also nice to take a break from more intense workouts, too. Sometimes you just aren’t in the mood to run for miles or lift weights. Intense workouts can feel really good, but sometimes you just want something a bit gentler, you know?

Speaking of, I also noticed right away that Devries doesn’t yell in her videos. While there’s definitely a time and a place for that in-your-face trainer vibe, her workouts are mostly silent apart from the music. She doesn’t even talk you through the moves: Instead, she demonstrates each one beforehand so you know what’s about to happen and can easily follow along.

There’s a countdown timer in the corner of the screen that plays into that, too. I was able to still transition between intervals even while looking away because the timer would beep during the last five seconds of each move. It meant I got to fully focus on the exercise — and groove to the tunes — without ever wondering when it’d be over.

After doing these workouts for about a week, I can say they’re a great option for an at-home sweat, especially if you have to stay inside or want something more low-key. I didn’t get bored, since they’re essentially a mini dance party. (I even got a friend to do one with me virtually!) Oh, and I definitely got my steps in.

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