Getting Sweaty while Exploring Nanaimo Outdoors @ Driven Performance Bootcamp
I am a true believer in fitness bootcamps. I love them because they are a quick, varied workout (45 min – 1 hr) and they provide fantastic all over body conditioning. No spending 2 hours in the gym just working on legs, then 2 hours the next day working on arms. I don’t have time for that! I also like how they combine resistance and cardio training, which is very effective for weight loss. My first few sets of bootcamps three years ago took me from a size 14 to a size 8 in less than a year, and I barely changed my diet, except for cutting out bread. I still like to indulge in wine and chocolate, which is why I’ve become a bootcamp junkie!
I find fitness classes are more effective for me than going to the gym or for a run on my own, which are easy to skip if it’s raining or I don’t feel like going. If I sign up for a set of fitness classes I’m simply more likely to go.
I have tried various bootcamps in Nanaimo as I like to see what’s being offered and compare instructors, prices and the types of classes they offer. An instructor can make such a huge difference to a person’s bootcamp experience. I look for instructors who are encouraging, fun, enthusiastic and knowledgeable. Instructors who lead by example and actually do the exercises, and who also watch the class closely to ensure newbies are doing the exercises correctly and safely rate high in my books.
I recently started Driven Performance’s 6-week Outdoor Boot Camp, which runs July 18-Aug 26. It appealed to me because I love exercising in the beautiful outdoors when the weather’s nice, and they offer a choice of 15 classes per week at various locations around Nanaimo with a number of different instructors. Talk about variety! They also provide a private Facebook support group, which is great for sharing stories and advice and making new friends. To learn more about their boot camp and their other fitness offerings, click here or check out their video below:
It has been 8 weeks since my last boot camp. I’ve stayed active running and doing stair workouts, but it’s not the same as having your body pushed to its limit several times per week, so I was prepared to feel a little stiff the first couple of weeks.
Because I work during the day I opted for the 6 pm classes at Westwood Lake, Beban Park and Neck Point. They also offer class times at 7:00 and 10:30 am. As I write this blog we are half way through the 6 week series and I’ve met four of their instructors – Karen, Danielle, Fab and the Driven Performance owner, Miguel Diaz.
Each instructor leads a different type of workout, which is what I like about having a variety of instructors. One evening Karen had us doing 2 different exercises, and repeating the set three times, before moving onto another two exercises. One set included doing a spider crawl into a push up for 60 seconds, doing curtsy squats for 60 seconds, and then going back to the spider crawl. Karen also introduced us to an exercise I hadn’t tried before – the butterfly – which entails going into a squat position then moving your thighs in and out like butterfly wings for 60 seconds. You really feel the burn doing these after one minute, especially after doing a minute of squats! For two days I felt my inner thighs like never before! I really like the end of her classes where she combines an exercise we all hate, such as burpees, into a 3 ½ min upbeat song. Every time we heard a certain refrain in the song, we had to do one burpee. It sounds harmless enough, but over the course of the song we must have completed 40 burpees. She’s very tricky that Karen!
The owner of Driven Performance, Miguel Diaz, instructed the Neck Point evening class I attended and wow, what a fantastic class! Not only is it held in a beautiful setting overlooking the ocean, but Miguel is very enthusiastic and motivational, always offering corrections and challenging us to do the exercises in different ways. He really knows his stuff and helped the new bootcampers adapt certain exercises to meet their fitness levels, adapted other exercises if people had injuries, and pushed the stronger athletes to challenge them more. We remained on our mats most of the time working on exercises for our core strength. We even partnered up to help challenge each other with certain exercises, like pushing down our partner’s legs while they laid on their backs, and they tried to resist our pushes. Another fun exercise was having every student remain in a plank position while each student ran to the end of the line one at a time, essentially moving our plank line down the beach! It’s awesome when instructors can incorporate FUN into a workout class, which makes me actually WANT to come to class. Just because it’s exercise doesn’t mean it has to be a chore.
The other two instructors, Fab and Danielle, were absolutely amazing and very motivating. I can’t wait to see what the remaining 3 weeks have in store. So far I’m very impressed with Driven Performance’s Outdoor Bootcamp and would highly recommend it for any fitness level!
Have fun out there,