As some of you know, I’ve been working on losing some weight and getting back into shape. It’s a typical story: boy is single, boy gets in shape. Boy meets girl, boy marries girl, fitness goes out the window, especially with all the ‘sympathy eating’ during girl’s pregnancy. Believe it or not, this was me just five years ago:
Slowly, surely, I became this:
So, understandably, I needed to do something about it. In addition to joining the gym at the Prestige Oceanfront Resort in Sooke, I met up with Michelle from MIJO fitness at a Sooke Chamber function. Michelle told me about her FITCamp program and I was intrigued. One of the things I’ve always hated about working out is the routine. Doing the same exercises and running on the treadmill gets excruciatingly boring after a while, and it’s easy to lose interest. Michelle promised that I wouldn’t be bored and that I’d get the best workout of my life.
She was right.
MIJO FITCamps are held outdoors at various parks and public facilities around Sooke (and there is a separate program in Colwood/Langford too). I arrived last Tuesday evening at Journey Middle School not really knowing what to expect. It started out easy enough, a short jog around the parking lot to warm up. Then it got serious. Michelle put us through our paces with some tough circuit training. There were giant step-ups, long jumps, and push ups followed by more running. And then stair climbing, squats and rows, and more push ups. And more running.
By 30 minutes in, I’m sweating profusely and I’ve already drank all my water. What’s next? More stair climbing, some stretchy-tube lat exercises, and – you guessed it – more push-ups. Finally we’re done – cooling down in the evening air and stretching our tired muscles. I felt amazing after the workout and couldn’t wait for the next class.
Some things I noticed about the bootcamp. Every exercise Michelle had me do seemed a lot easier than it actually was. I would think ‘no sweat,’ and sweat I did. Michelle knows how to make her students really work. There are lower-impact options. Michelle makes sure that everyone can participate and offers alternatives to all the exercises to ensure that no one is left out or unable to perform the training. And finally, I was the only guy in the class! Why more men don’t take advantage of these classes, I really don’t know. It was fun, the fresh air was great, and it’s much more interesting than slogging away in the gym. And let me tell you – I haven’t ever been that sore the next day from a gym workout.
If you’re looking for a challenge, and something different than the ol’ gym routine, contact Michelle and sign up for FITCamp – you’ll be glad you did!
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