Cathe Friedrich Reviews

A Review of Cathe Lite–a workout program for home exercisers

April 7, 2019

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Cathe Lite is how you get yourself back into those skinny jeans asap! Let me explain…

Here’s the question you’re asking: Is the Cathe LiTe program ideal for an intermediate exerciser?

I’m a superfan of Cathe Friedrich so I get really excited when she comes out with a new workout program.

If you’ve ever done any of her routines then you know (most of) her workouts are for the advanced exerciser.

I was excited about her announcement that the LiTe program was for intermediate exercisers because I envisioned a set of routines that would be a great place for women who’re ready to transition over to more advanced home exercise but not ready for Cathe’s regular workouts.

✔ I think Cathe delivered on her promise that LiTe is for the intermediate exerciser (in some places more than others).

Let me tell you everything you need to know about the LiTe series by Cathe Friedrich…(stay tuned to the end because I’ll give you my recommendations for purchase based on your current abilities)

This topic was covered on a Crunches & Cosmos podcast episode. You can listen below (or tune in on iTunes, Spotify, Stitcher or your favorite podcast player).

This post may contain Amazon (or other) affiliate links which won’t change your price but will share some commission. You can get more information about that here.

What you need to know about the Cathe LiTe Program

✔LiTe is an acronym for low impact training extreme. Every workout stays low impact (no moves that take you off the ground) with the exception of the Calorie Crush Workouts.

✔The Calorie Crush workouts are ‘companion’ workouts for some of the main routines and are anywhere from 8 to 15 minutes. Cathe calls these routines ‘cardio bonuses’.  You can do them alone if you’re short on time but they’re ideal as add-ons to make the main workouts more intense.

✔Cathe calls the LiTe series the ‘sister series’ to the ICE (intermediate conditioning extreme) series she released a few years ago.  Learn more about those workouts by reading this –>> Your Guide to ICE Boot Camp Circuit

✔You’ll see the term ‘pyramid’ used in some of the strength training routines.  

When you do weight training using a pyramid pattern it means you repeat the same exercises in each set but go down in reps and up in (size of) weights

For example, in the Pyramid Pump workout Cathe does 5 sets of exercises for the lower body.  The 1st set is 12 reps using 5 lbs., the 2nd set is 10 reps using 8 lbs., the 3rd set is 8 reps using 10 lbs. (then you go back down the pyramid), the 4th set is back to 10 reps using 8 lbs. and the final set is back at the start of the pyramid with the most reps and lightest weights (12 reps with 5 lbs.).

✔Cathe uses a ‘stacking’ pattern in the Strong Body workouts.  This pattern is different than a pyramid.  With this method you layer the exercises in each set to overlap muscle groups, rather than focusing on one muscle group like you do with the pyramid method.

There are 177 premix workouts between all the DVD’s!  (Premixes are additional workouts created from each main routine by blending different pieces of the workouts together.  Each premix feels like a new workout.)  I always mention the premix routines because I’d been buying Cathe DVD’s for years before I clicked on ‘premix’ and discovered what it was!

You can buy the entire 7-disc LiTe program as a set OR you can purchase the DVD’s individually.  This is awesome (many programs, like the ones by Beachbody, make you purchase the entire series)! And with the extra premix workouts on each DVD you still get a ton of workouts by buying an individual disc.

If you love LiTe (which you will) then consider signing up for Cathe on Demand (I’m not an affiliate).  It’s Cathe’s exercise on demand service that’s perfect for every woman who loves to workout at home.  With a subscription, you get access to EVERY SINGLE Cathe Friedrich workout video!

You can learn more about it here –>> How to Sign Up for Cathe Live or Cathe on Demand (Plus Live)

You’ll need some equipment to do the LiTe workouts.  I go over what you need in each workout below.

✔The stretch segments in the LiTe program are awesome.  Don’t skip them.

✔It’s very easy to modify these workouts to be easier or more difficult by changing out the weights you use in the routine. 

So, I DO recommend this series for every level exerciser from beginner to advanced.

✔It’s become common to use screen prompts in newer exercise videos and Cathe does a great job of that in this series.  There’s no countdown clock (I like those but you won’t miss it).

a screen shot of how Cathe Lite uses on screen prompting during the routines

How many workouts are in the Cathe Lite Program (and how long are they)?

There are 7 main DVD’s in the Cathe LiTe series.

The length of the main workouts (not the premix blends) are:

Body Weight & Bands-44 minutes

Cardio Party-40 minutes

Metabolic Blast-41 minutes

PHA 2-44 minutes

Rev’d Up Rumble-42 minutes

Strong Body: Stacked Sets: Lower-39 minutes

Strong Body: Stacked Sets: Upper-36 minutes

So, as you can see, all the main workouts are under an hour in the base series.

Each of the videos has Bonus content that includes ab workouts (there are 2 different ones in this series) and the Calorie Crush workouts are included in some of the workouts (keep reading to find out which ones).

You can select a premix routine to do a workout that combines the Calorie Crush and/or ab segments to your workout.


Pyramid Pump*-81 minutes

*If you purchase the 7-set DVD series this video isn’t included. This video IS INCLUDED in the library of workouts with a Cathe on Demand membership.

How hard are the Cathe Lite workouts?

If you do the routines exactly like they’re designed then you’ll find the routines aren’t precisely intermediate across every main workout. (In Cathe’s defense, this is my subjective opinion.  You might feel differently.)

But I do Cathe Friedrich workouts a few times a week and I can say that the LiTe workouts (compared to her other routines) feel very easy at times and pushing the advanced category at others.

This isn’t a bad thing.

But don’t assume that because you do one of the workouts in this series and it’s too easy for you that the other ones will be the same.

*Keep reading and I’ll tell you which workouts were on the ‘easy’ side for me and which were more advanced (along with my recommendations).

What equipment will you need to do the workouts in Cathe LiTe?

Body Weight & Bands

An exercise loop (you’ll probably have to buy a set of these, I’ve never seen them sold individually)

Exercise band

Tubing (the ones with handles)

A mat

Cardio Party

No equipment needed!

Metabolic Blast

Dumbbells (Cathe uses 3, 5, and 8 lbs.)

A mat


Dumbbells (5, 8, 10, 12 and 15 lbs.)

An aerobic step with 3 risers on each side

A mat

Not sure about using an aerobic step?

✔ Learn more about buying and using an aerobic step in this post: Your Expert Guide to Buying and Using an Aerobic Step

Rev’d Up Rumble

No equipment needed

Strong Body: Stacked Sets: Lower

A barbell (25 and 30 lbs.)

Dumbbells (8, 10 and 12 lbs.)

A mat

Strong Body: Stacked Sets: Upper

Dumbbells (5, 8, 10, 12 and 15 lbs.)

An aerobic step with 3 risers under each side

A mat

Pyramid Pump

Dumbbells (3, 5, 8, 10, 12 and 15 lbs.)

Sliding device (these are the ones I love and use on carpet, you’ll need a different style for a hard floor)

High step with 3 risers (you can use a gym sized aerobic step)

Stability ball (I use a 55 cm ball, but if you’re taller than 5’7″ then you might need a bigger size)

A mat

Who’s in the Cathe LiTe team of exercisers?

There are 5 team members (including Cathe) in each of the workouts (and a total of 7 different crew used across the routines).

If you’re a long-time fan of Cathe you’ll be happily surprised to see Jai and Brenda on the crew of some of the routines.

And if you have a membership to Cathe Live you’ll recognize Jennifer and Nicole from Cathe’s home gym.

a screen shot of 5 of the exercisers in the Cathe Lite program

How many calories will you burn doing the Cathe LiTe workouts?

This will be unique for everyone but here’s what I burned doing the workouts (this is an average number after doing the routines a few times).

And remember you’ll burn more calories in the workouts that have more cardio.

Body Weight & Bands-163 calories

Cardio Party-244 calories

Metabolic Blast-232 calories

PHA 2-296 calories

Rev’d Up Rumble-273 calories

Strong Body: Stacked Sets: Lower-264 calories

Strong Body: Stacked Sets: Upper-152 calories

Pyramid Pump (remember this workout is 81 minutes long)-543 calories

Pro Tip- Don’t decide which workouts to buy based solely on the amount of calories you want to burn. 

It’s not a good idea in the long run.  You need to love the workouts so you keep doing them not because it’s a chore you repeat to burn a specific number of calories.

How much room will you need to do the Cathe LiTe workouts?

No more room than you need to do any home exercise routine.

I always recommend you have a clear space that’s at least the size of a 5 x 8 rugAnything more than that is even better.

What are the routines like in the Cathe LiTe program?

Cathe stays true to her style in the LiTe series.

Across the workouts you’ll see a lot of boxing-inspired moves and compound exercises.

The music in this series is good (which is very important in my opinion).

The Calorie Crush bonus workouts are the perfect way to intensify the routines.  So, I recommend you pick a premix that uses them. 

*Attention-Unlike the main workouts which are all low-impact, the Calorie Crush workouts have high-impact moves.

If you use the Calorie Crush workouts as stand-alone routines just know that there’s no warm-up.  So be ready to dive in immediately.

Some of the workouts require balance, a few of them require coordination and with one you’ll see what the average person would consider complex choreography. *Keep reading and I’ll tell you which videos have each of these elements.

Body Weight & Bands

Here’s a look at the premix situation with the Body Weight & Band video:

an image showing a list of the premix workout titles in the Body Weight and Bands program

The main Body Weight & Bands routine is a 44-minute total body toning workout.  This workout falls under the true intermediate category.

If you’re wondering whether you really need to buy an exercise loop, tubing AND an exercise band to pull off this workout the answer is yes, yes you do.

Honestly, I’m not a big fan of the tubing with handles.  I can never seem to pick up the right resistance and end up doing the exercises with something way too easy or with far too much resistance.  Plus, the handles aren’t comfortable to hold.  They hurt my hands.

So, whenever possible I use a long exercise band (get one that’s at least 7 ft.) in place of the tubing for those exercises.

But with this workout it’s hard to use the exercise band in place of the tubing.  The moves are difficult to pull off without the handles that you get in the tubing.

The first half of this workout is standing and the second half is (you guessed it) not standing (they’re on the floor).

Calorie Crush Body Weights & Bands

There’s an 8-minute calorie crush companion workout that goes with the Body Weight & Bands routine.

It’s actually a really fun little blast. It’s a continuous steady state cardio segment using an exercise loop for the entire routine.

I definitely recommend you try one of the premix routines that combines the Calorie Crush workout with the main workout (like Basic #4 or Basic #6).

Cardio Party

Here’s a look at the premix situation with Cardio Party:

a list of the premix workouts in Cardio Party

Remember you won’t need any equipment to do this 40 minute workout.

The choreography is simple and has boxing and dance elements.  It’s fun.

If you’ve never done a Cathe workout then you might miss a few reps the first time through (when you’re figuring out the steps) but you’ll have it down by the 3rd time.

I think the main Cardio Party workout is on the easy (beginner) side. So, if you’re worried that her workouts might be too difficult for you then start with Cardio Party.

Calorie Crush Cardio Party

The companion workout for Cardio Party is 15 minutes long.

If you were hoping for an aerobic step routine in the LiTe program then you’ll be very happy with this calorie crush program. I LOVED this workout.

You’ll use an aerobic step with 1 riser under each side to do 4 step combinations with intensity blasts in between.  You repeat each combination 6 times.  The choreography is intermediate to advanced (and completely advanced if you’ve never done step aerobics).

If you’ve ever done Cathe’s Imax workouts then you’ll recognize the pattern used in Calorie Crush Cardio Party.

ATTENTIONIf you’ve never done step aerobics then you’ll get frustrated with this routine.  As I said before, the Calorie Crush workouts don’t have a warm up and there’s no ‘teaching’ of the moves before you put them all together.  This workout starts with all of combination one immediately pieced together. 

My advice—have patience!  Take the time to learn this and it’ll be your favorite one.

Metabolic Blast

Here’s a look at the premix lineup in Metabolic Blast:

a list of the premix routines in the Metabolic Blast workout in Cathe Lite

Metabolic Blast is 41 minutes of fun.  There are a lot of compound exercises (working more than one muscle group at a time) using dumbbells.

You won’t see any complex choreography in this workout but you’ll need balance for some of the exercises.

I don’t have any dumbbells lighter than 5 lbs. and realized the first time I did the workout that I needed them.  The 5’s are too heavy at times.

I love the music in this workout.

I felt like my body was slightly confused during this workout (the first time).  Some of the combos are very easy (beginner) and some are almost advanced.

This isn’t a big deal but expect to have to do this routine a few times to figure out where you need to go up in weight to make it more challenging and down in weight to survive the set.

Calorie Crush Metabolic Blast

You won’t need any equipment for the 11-minute companion workout to Metabolic Blast.

It’s a hiit style (high intensity interval training) routine that borders on advanced.

Pro Tip-The Metabolic Blast premix called Basic #6 is a perfect balance of everything (in my opinion).


Here’s a look at the premixes in the PHA 2 workout:

a list of the PHA2 premix routines in Cathe Lite

PHA 2 is one of my favorite workouts in the LiTe series.  (PHA stands for peripheral heart action training.  This is a style of exercising where you alternate upper body and lower body moves for maximum muscle recruitment and results.)

I think this workout falls under the true intermediate category if you do it exactly as Cathe does.

PHA 2 is very easy to modify into a more challenging (or less challenging) workout by replacing the weights you use for the exercises.

If you love this workout make sure you check out–>> Strong and Sweaty PHA Training Will Change Your Body

Pro Tip– Do one of the PHA 2 premix routines that adds in one of the ab workouts and you’ve got an awesome total body conditioning program.

Insider’s Tip Love those red tights Cathe’s wearing in PHA 2? You can find them at Violate the Dress Code! (I’m not an affiliate but I love them and bought a pair myself!)

There’s no Calorie Crush workout with the PHA 2 program.

Rev’d Up Rumble

Here’s a look at the premixes in Rev’d Up Rumble:

a list of the premix workouts in Rev'd up Rumble in Cathe Lite

Rev’d Up Rumble is a 42-minute kickboxing cardio workout that doesn’t use any equipment.

You’ll need to have laser-focus when you do the combinations (and some coordination) so be ready to miss a few reps the first time you do this workout.

I think the main routine for Rev’d Up Rumble is for the beginner to Intermediate level of exerciser.

Calorie Crush Rev’d Up Rumble

The companion workout is 9 minutes in length and more advanced than the main routine.  The workout follows a hiit style.

Pro Tip- If you feel like the main workout in Rev’d Up Rumble is difficult then you might have a hard time with the Calorie Crush companion routine.  But, if you’re used to Cathe’s intensity then you’ll get the most out Rev’d Up Rumble by doing a premix like Basic #6 or Mish Mosh #1.

Strong Body: Stacked Sets: Lower

Here’s a look at the premix options in Strong Body: Stacked Sets: Lower:

a list of the stacked sets lower body premix workouts

I LOVE the stacked sets videos.

The 39-minute lower body workout uses the ‘stacking’ method that I explained earlier to focus in on all the lower body muscles.  I really like routines that use a barbell so this was a lot of fun.

The workout has 2 groupings of exercises (A and B).  There are 5 different exercises in each grouping that your repeat one time.

I think this routine is a true intermediate level workout.

There are no Strong Body Calorie Crush workouts.

Strong Body: Stacked Sets: Upper

Here’s a look at the premix lineup for Strong Body: Stacked Sets: Upper:

a list of the stacked sets upper body premix workouts in Cathe Lite

Like with the Lower Body workout, the 36-minute upper body routine follows the ‘stacking’ pattern that you’re going to love.

The workout has 3 groupings of exercises. In the first grouping you’ll focus on triceps and chest, in the 2nd grouping it’s shoulder work and then you finish the workout with back and biceps exercises.

The routine is intermediate to advanced in my opinion.  And a great total upper body workout.

Pyramid Pump

Here’s a look at the premixes in Pyramid Pump:

a list of the premix routines from the Pyramid Pump workout from Cathe Lite

The only downfall to Pyramid Pump is that it’s really long.  But with all the premix options you can find something to fit your schedule if you don’t have the full 81 minutes. (There are a bunch of Timesaver options.)

The sets of exercises use the pyramid pattern that you’ve seen Cathe do before (and that I described earlier).

Pyramid Pump is a high rep workout that can get boring if you’re not careful.  But I recommend you buy it if you love resistance training because, with the premix routines, you get a ton of workouts.

I especially love all the premix workouts that blend in one of the ab routines.  It’s total body conditioning at its best.

Bonus 6 Pack Abs #1 and #2

There are two ab workouts that you’ll see inside the premix routines (and as stand-alone routines if you have Cathe on Demand).

an image of Cathe Friedrich with the titles of 6 pack abs underneath

And if you’re buying individual DVD’s you’ll see one of the two 6-pack ab workouts included in each video.

The workouts are both 10 minutes long and have unique exercises.

Most people will be able to do most* of the exercises (they aren’t complicated) but might miss a few reps.

*There’s a move called a hip thrust with an up strike (boxing inspired) in the Abs #1 workout that I never feel like I’m doing correctly.  I’m working on it.

The ab workouts are good and I feel like they’re true intermediate routines.

Who’s the Cathe LiTe program perfect for? (Who’ll love it?)

Any fan of Cathe Friedrich will love these workouts.  Expect to like some more than others as with any series.

I do think these workouts are a good choice for the intermediate home exerciser.  But take note of the workouts that require equipment.

The beginning home exerciser who’s ready to level up!  Go you!

Which Cathe LiTe video should you buy if you don’t want them all?

If you don’t want to invest in the entire set of DVD’s (and you aren’t ready to sign up for Cathe on Demand) then here’s what I recommend

If you’re at the very beginning of your home exercise journey and are worried these workouts might be too difficult for you then try:

✔Rev’d Up Rumble (if you don’t have any equipment)

✔Metabolic Blast (if you have some dumbbells)

If you have some equipment and want to tone, then start with one of these:

✔PHA 2

✔Strong Body Stacked Upper or Lower

And if you’re ready to level up your body definition then buy Pyramid Pump.

Don’t forget to do this if you buy Cathe Lite…

Download the user’s guide!

It’s packed full of information and has several workout rotation calendars like this one:

a workout rotation calendar from Cathe's Lite user's guide

Where can you buy Cathe lite?

You have a few options to buy Cathe Lite.

You’ll get the most bang for your buck if you sign up for Cathe on Demand.

Learn more about that here–>> How to Sign Up for Cathe Live or Cathe on Demand + Live

But if you want to buy the DVD’s then you can get them on Amazon, Cathe’s site and they sell them at Collage Video:

Cathe Lite on Amazon

Cathe Lite on Cathe Friedrich’s website

The Cathe Lite program at Collage Video

You can also buy downloads* from Cathe’s website.

*These do NOT come with the premixes and I’ve never downloaded any of her workouts. Make sure you read all the FAQ’s on the download page before you use this option.

Other articles just for you…

Fit Split with Cathe Friedrich

A review of Muscle Max by Cathe Friedrich

The best streaming workout libraries for women who workout at home

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