Monday, 17 June 2013

Reaching my Fitness Goals with Camp Gladiator

I joined Camp Gladiator (South Florida) about 4 weeks ago now and I LOVE IT! A friend told me about it and I finally took her up on going to a session with her. After the first workout, I was hooked!

Let me take you back in history for a minute...
I enjoying going running.. It's my 'me-time' because I just strap on my shoes, put my iphone in my arm band, turn on my Nike+ and music, and go... I'm able to lose myself in the running and anything that was on my mind that day just seems to disappear while I'm working out. I used running as my brain rest between working and dinner (and sometimes more work). I'm not a morning person so running before work was never an option.
Now I'll be the first to admit to you, I'm not a real runner. I tell people 'I do intervals'. LOL. Basically I go out for a jog, but can't run the whole time, so I switch between jogging and speed-walking. Saying that I do 'intervals' sounds so much cooler than 'I start out jogging, but then have to slow down to a walk occasionally because I can't catch my breath'.
I first started running when I moved to FL and met my friend Kelly in 2009. She's a tennis player and a runner. She told me about the Nike+ app (at that time it was the little sensor you put in your shoe) and how it records your runs so you can keep track of your progress. I started running with a Couch-to-5K podcast and well, now I've been running a few times a week ever since. I don't really go more than 2-4 miles, but that's enough for me to break a good sweat. I attempted  2 5K races and even a 15K race when I lived in Chicago, but since moving back to Florida, entering in races doesn't really interest me. I don't feel like paying an entry fee to run a course and get a t-shirt. Although I do have 'train for a half-marathon' listed in my 2013 Goals.
Fast forward to this past year... I downloaded the Nike+Training app on my phone and was using that for a while because I wanted to mix up my running with other cardio and toning. I moved in with my bf a few months ago and, although there is an awesome gym in our condo building, my workout routines started feeling boring and I wasn't looking forward to working out as much as I used to. Also, I wasn't running much anymore because I didn't have as much stress from work that I needed to run away from. So I was in sort of a lull with working out and was getting bored. That's where CG comes in! They SAVED me from my boring workouts that I had to force myself to do so that I wouldn't feel guilty for my chocolate and cheese addictions.

Here's what the Camp Gladiator website says about the camp:

"Camp Gladiator is more than a fitness boot camp, it’s an experience. Camp Gladiator is a four week adult fitness boot camp that promises a motivating and challenging environment where men and women of all ages and fitness levels can push themselves. Campers should expect a total body workout. A typical session could include interval training, sprint and agility drills, stations, plyometrics, body weight strength drills, cardio mix, and much more. Camp Gladiator is designed to increase your functional strength, speed, stamina and, most importantly, to deliver results." - From

It truly is a life saver! I look forward to my workouts after work EVERY DAY! And each session is different and the weeks (and sometimes the days) are themed, which makes it really exciting and fun! I wish I took some pictures so I could show you the transformation I've seen in my body in just 4 weeks! I'm still working towards my goal, but I love what I'm seeing so far!

I've been going 4-6 times a week and on Saturdays, we have a beach workout! At first I was nervous about the beach workouts because about 2 years ago I got a really bad stress fracture in my foot (Public Announcement: If you try barefoot running shoes, like Vibram Five Fingers, you need to start for the ground up and don't try to go for your normal distance immediately!) Sometimes the sand bothers my foot if we do a lot of running, but I've done 3 beach sessions so far, and only the first one was the killer.

Here are my fitness goals:
I was trying to be funny when I wrote this ...(read: 'hot to bangin'?! uh, ok) But then I wrote in my goals. On May 17th, my CG trainer, Erika, took my measurements for the CG nutrition and weight-loss challenge. My measurements were:
Thighs: 24"
Biceps: 10"
Waist (at belly button): 30"
Hips (widest part): 42"
Weight (measured at home): 153 lbs (early in the morning)

The challenge is simple. Drop a $1 each time to attend camp to drop the inches. The person to lose the most inches at the end, wins the money. (But the trainer said she would have prizes for other finishers too.)

This week is my last week of the challenge and I went to go try on the Lululemon Wonder Under crops yesterday (see picture below). I wear a size 8 but I think I should have also tried on the 6 just in case. They were SOOO comfortable that I feel like maybe I should have gone down a size. That was my first time trying them on so I know how good the quality is and why it has such a cult following. I still love my TJMAXX, Marshall's, Target and Old Navy workout clothes, but nothing compares to the quality and comfort of Lululemon. Looking forward to EARNING my pair when I reach my goal.

Wunder Under Crop
Lululemon Wonder Under Crops - $72

Some pictures from Saturday beach workouts and weekday workouts:
CG Saturday Beach Workout (I'm in the purple top and black shorts in the bottom right)

Weekday CG workouts!
CG Saturday Beach Workout

I love the CG Saturdays Beach Workouts. (I'm in the black hat next to the girl in the black t-shirt.) It sucks because it's at 8am on a Saturday morning, which means I can't really go crazy with my Friday evening... not that I really do that often. But I love this camp because we get all sandy and sweaty, then after, go jump in the ocean to clean off! And at 9am, it's perfect to stop by the West Palm Downtown Greenmarket for some fresh produce, a veggie juice, and some jerk chicken on a stick. Plus free kettlecorn samples and the occasional treat (cider donuts or Palm Beach Pastry cookie samples).

I haven't checked my measurements, but I've definitely gained muscle in my arms, my stomach looks leaner, and my pants/skirts fit better around my hips. I have weighed myself and I teeter around 150-152. I'm less concerned about the weight part because I know that muscle weighs more than fat. I would certainly love a 6-pack of abs, but I'm more concerned with my wrap-around porch that I have going on with my butt and thighs.  Yes.... I called it my 'wrap-around porch'. I don't really have love handles because I have wide hips, but I would like to strengthen my lower back more so I don't have that little bit of pudge sitting on my hips (love handles). Finally, I love toned arms... I'm still getting used to 'posing' in pictures when I'm out with girlfriends or with Danny, but I want to be able to see some definition without having to flex. I'd also like to avoid getting 'wings' that almost every woman gets as their arms sag. Those are all pretty standard improvement areas for women (and men).

Lastly, I'd love to get Danny to come to bootcamp with me! It's impossible for force or coerce anyone into joining, but hopefully he'll realize that this isn't some fad... I'm making permanent changes in my health and life. I'm hoping he'll want to join me at CG not because he could afford to lose some inches too, but because it's a BLAST! My trainer just sent out an announcement email that they are celebrating Christmas in July! I can gift one free month of camp to a friend, plus anyone else who wants to sign up gets half off! I won't lie to you, camp is not cheap. But it is WORTH it! It's practically like having a personal trainer but a fraction of the cost. And the workouts are adaptable to any experience level, and any ailments (there is a lady in my group with a ROD in her leg and ZERO thigh muscle but I see her at least 3 times a week and she gets as good of a workout as any of us do!)

Looking forward to camp tonight at 6pm in Downtown West Palm Beach on the waterfront!

*This is not a sponsored post. All opinions are my own.