A bit on boot camp

I thought I might talk a little about a conversation I heard at a boot camp yesterday. In the midst of one agonising, ego-shattering set of push-ups while balancing one hand on a soccer ball, one woman remarked to another fellow sufferer and me that boot camp would be much better ‘if would could just do the exercises slower’.

“I could carry on for *hours*,” she proclaimed indignantly, “if they just slowed down a bit. I am fit enough to do that!”

The other woman eagerly agreed, asserting that THAT was the problem with boot camp. “It’s just too fast!”.

Now, I am under no illusions about my strength and exercise capabilities. I firmly WAS under the illusion that I was quite strong (hey, I beat all but two of the boys in a Standard 3/Grade 5 arm-wrestling competition) before I decided to try this thing called Adventure Boot Camp.

I was lying to myself… in the same way that I believed that eating 2 x 4-bar KitKats after a very moderate treadmill session would not affect my waistline. Nothing teaches you how weak and unfit you are quicker than boot camp. Of the 16-18 people who are regularly in my class, I fit somewhere between 12th and 14th place in terms of fitness.

It was devastating.

Never once, however, have I believed that the reason I can’t do all 5 billion sets of stomach crunches, plank exercises, push-ups and ‘sprints’ (if by ‘sprint’ I mean ‘run juuuuust fast enough to be disqualified in a walking marathon’) etc. is because the trainer is running the class at an unmanageable clip. I can’t do them because I am not yet fit enough. And neither are these two women who were moaning about being shown up for being less than pristinely conditioned.

That they even expressed such a ridiculous thought out loud was laughable. Boot camp *is* great because you aren’t allowed to ever think you are on top of an exercise. There is always a harder, more strenuous, more sweat-inducing version.

And that’s why people keep coming back, partly, I reckon. It’s nice to see you surprise yourself when you can do two more push-ups, or you can run that second lap instead of walking it, as you did two weeks ago.

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5 Responses to A bit on boot camp

  1. Charmskool says:

    DB! Bootcamp! I’m absolutely and utterly in awe of you! I feel like lying down and eating a bowl of chocolate ice cream just thinking about bootcamp. You are a total wonder!

  2. Helen says:

    I always wanted to try bootcamp but I was always too scared. I did Tae Bo for a bit though which was very humbling. Although I guess it’s a bit like mountain climbing – easier if they didn’t make the cliffs so darned steep!

  3. dbawiw says:

    Oh, don’t be in awe, Charm – I assure you that you wouldn’t be if you actually saw me hobbling my way through a class. And yes, i feel the need to congratulate myself after every class with chocolate. I am not lying about that…chocolate after or before every, single class. I shan’t be losing weight from this, but at least I’ll be able to do a few more push ups, or carry a mate out of a warzone thanks to squat-trained legs. 😉

    Howdy Helen. I was terrified, too, but I really would recommend it. hahahah re the mountain climbing – you totally know how those two women think!

  4. Black Dog says:

    I did a boot camp last month, organized by a colleague at my (now former) workplace. I admit that seeing the office girls in lycra was a big part of the attraction, but hey–spending lunchtime running around in the sunshine sounded like a pretty good way to get out of the cubes for a bit.

    Kicked my arse, boot camp. Almost literally. I have never had to do squats and lunges butt crunches and ass pushups and whatever the fuck else they falsely claim* will give you a magical beach body in time for summer, but Jesus Christ, it hurt to sit after those sessions. And to stand. And to lie down sometimes, as well.

    It was fun, though. I liked it. Not often you hear me say that!

    — JF

    *Exercise and proper diet will get you in shape. Butt crunches in isolation? No, Ma’am.

  5. Don't Believe a Word I Write says:

    oi vey, mixed gender boot camp?! The horror! I would never get a boyfriend if he saw me huffing and puffing in my scarlet-faced way through squats and lunges and butt crunches. There is nothing remotely graceful about falling down when doing a push-up.

    Ja, sadly, the only real way to get a beach body is to keep my trap shut when there are biscuits on the table.

    HA HA, yes, if you liked it, i really, really, really, trust that you did! 🙂 I do, too, though yesterday I honestly wanted to accidentally lunge into the trainer with a cricket bat.

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