Shari E. - "...Fun working out early in the morning?"
EmpowerFIT Camper since December 2011
“Thanks to the EmpowerFIT program and its team of coaches and a shift in my nutrition to a high protein / low carb diet, I lost 51 lbs, 53 inches, and 19 percentage points in body fat in 6 months. I have been a customer and fan of EmpowerFIT for years, but going from 3 days a week to 5 made a HUGE difference in my fitness level, my energy, my weight, and my overall attitude toward life. My thanks to Kelly, Heather, and all the coaches for delivering a program that can work for everyone, regardless of your age, weight, or fitness level. And a heartfelt thank you to my fellow boot campers for all the support and encouragement during my fitness journey - it means a great deal to me. Where else can you have this much fun working out early in the morning?"
Ken S. - "Faster, Fitter and More Grounded."
EmpowerFIT Camper since November 2009
Why did you decide to get involved in boot camp? I’ve always wanted to take a structured training class, but just never made the time or didn’t know where to start. A friend of mine had been raving about boot camp for a while and I decided to give it a try for the Thanksgiving Day Turkey Buster Boot Camp.
What was your fitness level like when you started? As a regular runner, my cardio fitness was pretty decent when I started. Where I needed more help was with conditioning muscles other than those involved in running. I had been going to a gym and doing strength training on my own, but I knew that I just wasn’t getting the variety and motivation needed for a balanced workout.
Did you have any reservations about the program before you started? Even though I run in almost any weather, I wasn’t very sure about taking a workout class outdoors especially early in the morning. It turned out to be one of the best features of the class!
What was/has been the most challenging part of boot camp for you? Since I travel often for work on top of juggling work/life with kids, the biggest challenge has been trying to go to boot camp on a regular basis. However, I’ve found that the program and coaches have been quite flexible and accommodating such that I’m able to work boot camp into my schedule. Also, the benefit from even one class is significant and makes it well worth going to.
When did you begin seeing results from boot camp? Immediately – after my first class, I was sore and tired, but felt incredibly relaxed, stress free and grounded. There’s just something different about exerting oneself outside and boot camp gave me the same calm I felt after my most challenging runs. The physical results of boot camp followed about a month afterwards where I started noticing more energy, better endurance and tone. I found myself being able to keep a faster pace while running and keeping up with my kids.
Have you reached your fitness goals? If not, what do you hope to achieve? Perhaps the biggest surprise about boot camp was my rising expectations of my own fitness. Originally, my goal was to round out my running regimen. However, I’ve come to realize that I’m capable of more than I had imagined and I now look forward to seeing just how much I can push myself. I have to say, I am in better shape than I was 10 years ago!
What would you say to someone who might be reluctant to try EmpowerFIT boot camp? Give it a shot. The work out is fantastic and the folks are great. Find someone to go with – the first step getting out of bed early is the hardest part.
Do you think the EmpowerFIT boot camp program will affect your habits and attitude about fitness into the future? Absolutely – I think the program have forever changed my expectations to myself as well as what one can get out of an exercise class. I now know how much I was missing out by trying to keep my own exercise regimen. Boot camp is a reminder that others are the biggest motivator to keep to a regular program.
EmpowerFIT Camper since February 2008
EmpowerFit has had a tremendous impact on my life. After the birth of my fourth child, I knew it was time to regain control over my body. Incorporating fitness into my everyday life schedule was a challenge but I had to make it happen. I had started out on the right track, working out 3 -4 days a week but life decided to throw me a curve ball that almost prevented me from continuing my fitness goal. Kelly, the Empower team and my fellow boot campers have always been there to keep me on track, the consistent reassurance that I can do it and never give up. Being a single mother of 4 kids, working fulltime and attending school for my MBA, I feel great. I have so much energy, it is amazing. I feel reborn, more clarity in the way I think… no more haziness and slugginess. I am more efficient and ready to take on more challenges.
I never thought I could ever feel this way. It is something everyone should experience and immerse themselves in. Exercising on a regular basis makes you feel fabulous and gives you a new outlook on life. It was not easy taking the first step. I enjoyed sleeping in and lounging around but I knew it was time for change. Once I made that commitment to myself and my body, it was something I did not want to give it up on. This was something for me and I wanted to see it through. Five years later I am still at it and going 5 days a week. I LOVE IT! If they offered more days during the week, you would definitely see me there. My timed mile went from 11 minutes to 9.5 minutes. It is so important for us to take care of ourselves. Exercise is the cure to our mind, body and soul. Without that fuel, I would feel lost and unmotivated. Join me on embracing the natural high of fitness. Trust me, once you have had a taste of this, you will be addicted!
Rima K. - "Found Her inner athlete."
EmpowerFIT Camper since May 2008
Before starting EmpowerFIT Boot Camp in San Mateo in May 2008, Rima Kulkarni thought she’d try it for one month. But she liked it so much she’s been going ever since. “I really feel like EmpowerFIT boot camp has changed my whole life,” Rima says, “Because I've come so far in terms of fitness, it makes me feel like I can make changes in any part of my life. Since starting EmpowerFIT boot camp, I've become more productive at work, been better at keeping in touch with friends and family, and more active in the community. Boot camp is the best thing to wake me up in the morning or to re-energize me after work."
Why did you decide to get involved in boot camp? I had been looking for something new to add to my workout routine and read about EmpowerFIT (then AlaVie Fitness) on Daily Candy. I then also found out that a couple of my coworkers had done it and loved it, so I decided to try it out.
What was your fitness level like when you started? I was pretty in shape in terms of my cardiovascular health. I ran, swam, and worked out on the elliptical regularly. However, I had done little to no weight training before I started boot camp, so my muscles weren't very strong.
Did you have any reservations about the program before you started? I was scared that it would be really intense and would run like an army boot camp. Since I had so little experience with weights when I started, I was sure that I wouldn't be able to keep up with the exercises that were done in class and that I would get yelled at. However, the Coaches were very supportive right from the start. They emphasized that I could do things at my own pace until I felt more comfortable with the workouts, and rather than being crazy and bossy, they were really nice and encouraging.
What was/has been the most challenging part of boot camp for you? Honestly, I think the most challenging part sometimes is just getting there by 6:30 in the morning! I usually work pretty late and get home pretty late, so it's hard to get out of bed in the mornings. However, I always, always feel great after the class, so I know it's always worth it to go.
When did you begin seeing results from boot camp? I think after about three months of boot camp, I really noticed that I was a lot stronger than I had been. I suddenly had arm and abdominal muscles, which I had never had before. I could also run and swim faster and farther than I had been before boot camp. In addition, I had a lot more energy during the day and was sleeping better at night. It sounds cheesy, but I just felt more alive!
Have you reached your fitness goals? If not, what do you hope to achieve? The really great thing about boot camp is that it inspires me to constantly set new fitness goals. My original goal was to generally get stronger, which came just a few months after I started boot camp. I then decided I wanted to learn how to surf, and with my newly found upper body muscles, I knew that I could do it. I now am a pretty decent surfer and do it about once a week.
I’ve also gotten into rock climbing, and the girl who taught me how to do it was so impressed with my abilities the first time I went and said I was a natural. I think I was good at it because boot camp had given me strength, endurance, and flexibility that I had never had before! My most recent fitness goal was to run the Big Sur Half Marathon with my mom, dad, and brother, and that was amazing. I ran the race faster than I've ever run a half marathon before, and it was the first time ever that I've felt no pain during the race and no soreness after. My next goal is to run a full marathon!
What would you say to someone who might be reluctant to try boot camp? Just try it once! You can always sign up for just one month or even drop in for just one class. I'm sure that anyone who tries it would be impressed by how quickly the class goes by and how great you feel after it's over.
Do you think the boot camp program will affect your habits and attitude about fitness into the future? It already has changed everything about how I view fitness! I used to think of exercise as something I SHOULD do to stay healthy, but now I do it because I WANT to do it and think it's fun and makes me feel good. I make exercise into a social activity, because I will surf, climb, and run with my friends, and it's always great to catch up with all of the people at boot camp who are my friends now. I've learned that I love to be outdoors, rain or shine, because there is so much to see and experience (versus being inside at a gym).
Alma P. - "One of the best decisions I've ever made."
EmpowerFIT Camper since June 2010
In June of 2010, I started a new journey. I joined EmpowerFIT Boot Camp! I must admit, I was a bit skeptical and I was truly terrified of attending a "boot camp." I wasn’t sure what to expect, particularly because the only time that would work with my schedule was the 5:30 am class. The thought of getting out of my warm bed at 5 AM to workout outside, was horrific! However, I knew exercising was going to be beneficial for me in order to get fit and live healthier.
I started attending boot camp 3 times a week for a one month trial introduction. I had aches and pains, and I was sore for about a few weeks, and eventually it tapered. At the end of the month, I realized my muscles were developing, shaping, and toning. I was ecstatic and I was hooked! The workouts are challenging but fun, and never the same. The coaches are amazing!! They are extremely supportive, positive, and encouraging, and will not let you give up.
It’s almost been 3 years after my joining EmpowerFIT, and although the road hasn’t been easy, I have increased my workouts to 4-5 times a week. My energy, stamin,a and endurance has definitely increased. I have lost over 20 lbs and numerous inches. I recently had my routine check up and the doctor said, “continue doing what you’re doing”. I am exceptionally healthy and I feel FABULOUS!
The decision to join EmpowerFIT has turned out to be one of the best decisions I've ever made. This has been by far the ultimate exercise experience! And someday, I will run a half marathon (yes, half for now – not trying to hurt myself).
Thank you EmpowerFIT Team / Coaches!
Debbi B. - "Exercise is now part of my daily life."
EmpowerFIT Camper since November 2009
San Mateo resident Debbi Becker had no idea how EmpowerFit Boot Camp was going to shift her thinking about fitting fitness into her life. Now, Debbi says it's no longer a question of if she works out but when. We're thrilled to be part of her fitness journey - and we know she's going to hit that mile time.
When did you start attending the boot camp in San Mateo? November 2009 – Thanksgiving week. I signed up for a 3-day clinic. That way if I didn’t like it, I was only committed for 3 days. Turns out, I fell in love with it!
Why did you decide to get involved in boot camp? I needed to get more exercise but could not find any classes I liked or that fit into my schedule. I get bored working out by myself at the gym.
What was your fitness level like when you started? I was slightly active. I took a kickboxing class once a week and biked when the weather was nice. I was not regularly active.
Did you have any reservations about the program before you started? How did the program respond to those reservations? YES! I was afraid I would not be able to keep up with the class and make a fool of myself. My coach, made me feel like part of the team from the start of the first class. The Coaches are very positive and encouraging and will not let anyone give up!
What was/has been the most challenging part of boot camp for you? Getting to bed early enough the night before boot camp. It is easy to get caught up with the stuff at home and lose track of time.
When did you begin seeing results from boot camp? What were they? Within the first two weeks, I noticed I had more energy throughout the day on the days I went to boot camp. I’m losing weight although not as fast as I’d like it to - but is it ever really? The better gauge is how my clothes fit – or don’t anymore.
Have you reached your fitness goals? If not, what do you hope to achieve? Yes and no. I am a very slow runner. When I started, I could not run ¼ mile without taking at least one walk break. Now not only can I run the full mile, I have taken 2 ½ minutes off my time since January. I am still the slowest runner in camp but I know it is paying off. I would like to continue to improve my strength and endurance, lose more weight as well as get my timed mile to 10 minutes.
What would you say to someone who might be reluctant to try boot camp? Let go of any pre-conceived notions and just try it! You will be surprised. I won’t lie and say that it gets easier. It doesn’t but it does become less difficult. If it is easy, you’re not pushing yourself hard enough!!!
Do you think the boot camp program will affect your habits and attitude about fitness into the future? Most definitely! I have taken up running because of boot camp. It is no longer IF I am going to exercise but WHEN. There is rarely a day that I do not do some sort of activity: a run or bike ride, playing Frisbee, using my Wii Fit Plus or just taking a walk around the neighborhood.
Lori W. - "Working Mom Greets 50 with Pride!"
EmpowerFIT Camper since June 2005
As a busy working mom I have never written a "thank you" note to anyone for any service I have ever purchased... except for this note to you. So why am I writing this one? Because the results I have gotten from participating in EmpowerFit Boot Camp are really quite amazing!! Your workout program has yielded almost unbelievable changes in my physique, general health, mental attitude, and energy levels!!
This past spring, I looked in the mirror one morning and hardly recognized myself. After having two children, and holding down a demanding job with erratic hours and extensive travel, I could forgive myself a few extra pounds. But the woman I saw was fatigued, fat and frumpy. I thought, "Who are you?"
With my fiftieth birthday approaching, I also began to panic about my future. I was heavy and worried about my health. Several members of my family have high blood pressure, diabetes, and heart-related aliments. And, my body had begun to develop quirks - none of them good. A little hip thing. A shoulder thing. A twinge here, an ache there. Outside, well, as I just mentioned, there was that looming birthday.
I had tried every species of fad diet. These were never successful in the long term. They never provided what I really needed, which was to get fit and healthy. And, feeling awkward about my low fitness level had kept me from serious exercise. I belonged to a gym, but climbing the stairs to the machines was a huge mental struggle. I was a self-proclaimed weights-phobe. I spent most of my "gym workout" on an exercise bike (so much easier to read the paper and magazines that way!!). I decided to get my body back.
A few days later, while flipping through the local San Mateo paper, I noticed an advertisement for your boot camp. The ad photo was a bit intimidating - a lineup of seemingly super-fit women who looked to be engaged in some turbo, aerobic routine. But, I thought, "Maybe it is time to have some help with this and listen to somebody else!"
I went to the 5:30-6:30 a.m. class in San Mateo Central Park four times a week. In that first week, I felt like a walking bruise. But, in a short time, the aches abated. Since then, the changes have surfaced. I feel previously unknown muscles switch on from a dead sleep-strength coming from odd places. I find myself bouncing up stairs. I run faster. I jump higher. I now finally dare to go sleeveless.
After four months, I have lost more than 20 pounds and now wear a size 4. The inches just melted away. With the help of your fun, focused workouts, I'm in better shape than I've ever been in my life! Now I no longer look at every reflection of myself and see a map of disappointments. I stand straighter. I breathe deeper.
I simply could not have done this alone. You've taught me the importance of taking care of myself and guided me to embrace fitness as a lifestyle, not just another task!!! You've also found the secret to making the entire undertaking a ton of fun, and a great opportunity to meet other fabulous women who struggle with their fitness goals. A million heartfelt thanks!
"Hello Coach: Just returned from a weekend road trip with my family, we went to Sonoma and Point Reyes lighthouse. I carried my 3 year old boy on my shoulders, going down 308 steps and returning uphill 308 steps again, jogging with him on my shoulders, no problem - boot camp is working for me." - Alberto P., San Carlos Camp
"I just wanted to let you know that I finished my first half marathon, actually my first race ever and I could not have done it without all your help, motivation and great coaching skills. I went into the race just hoping to finish and was expecting to finish somewhere around three hours but I surprised myself and did it in 2 hour and 12 minutes. (Not so bad for an old lady!). I really think the attendance challenge came at the perfect time and was what enabled me to complete 13.1 miles. I had never run more than 5 prior to training for this race. Thank you so much Kelly for your fun and never boring workouts. You are awesome and very much appreciated." - Cynthia M., San Mateo Camp
"I have been attending boot camps with Heather's company for over four years now. Prior to starting these boot camps, I had never exercised regularly. However, after two kids, steadily gaining weight, and several failed attempts to start exercising regularly (yoga, pilates, walking, and even buying a treadmill), I knew I needed to try something different. My experience with boot camp has been great! I get an amazing full body workout that is different every day. I'm never bored, which is important since I easily get bored when doing other types of workouts. The bootcamps also allow me to choose my intensity level. So after four years, I still am able to get a workout that challenges me and continues to build my fitness level. I'm actually in better shape now than I was 10 years ago. I also love the camaraderie that I have developed with my fellow bootcampers. It really helps to have friends pushing with you through workouts. The workout variety, friendly people and great coaches keep coming back. I finally found a workout that is interesting, shows results and is fun too!" - Anirma G., Palo Alto Camp
"I have made many attempts at getting fit and I just don’t ever stick with anything more than a couple of weeks. I just started my third month of boot camp and am loving it. I signed up with a friend, which keeps me accountable and makes it extra fun. The workouts are challenging and I have really noticed a difference in my strength and speed. I have lost 11lbs so far and counting. All the coaches are personable and keep you in good form. The class is so fun that before I know it, it’s over and I feel great for accomplishing yet another class. I highly recommend EmpowerFIT boot camp!! You will get out of it what you put in." – Julia J., Palo Alto Camp
"I have never been in better shape and it's all due to EmpowerFIT Boot Camp! I joined in July of 2009 (when it was AlaVie) to get ready for my upcoming wedding in May. Quickly I dropped significantly in weight, inches, and body fat. Their workout program is challenging and always changes so it never is dull. The coaches are professional, caring, and a wealth of exercise knowledge! I would highly recommend EmpowerFIT to anyone looking to get into the best shape of their life. My only word of advice...be careful, EmpowerFIT boot camp is ADDICTIVE!!!!" - Shanan V., San Mateo Camp
"I have an extremely busy and stressful career. Morning bootcamps help me to keep fit and provide a welcomed break to my daily work routine. Plus, they are fun and challenging. No two workouts are ever the same." - George P., San Mateo Camp