“Boot camp” is a term that used to be associated with the military; now however, boot camp fitness has become an effective program for weight loss, good health and overall fitness.
Boot camp fitness is inspired by the military and their training and fitness techniques which can be hugely demanding and also physically as well as mentally taxing. Gyms and personal trainers who offer these programs are often retired military personnel or connected to the military in some way.
Like in military training, Boot Camp fitness programs rely on rigorous physical exercise of many different kinds; such as running, using weights and body weight (the old military standbys of push up and sit ups), strength training, interval training, plyometrics, suspension training, different kinds of calisthenics and other outdoor activities.
Most boot camp fitness programs run between four and six weeks and usually involve group fitness classes that aim for fat loss and fitness, through a team effort. There is the support and camaraderie that comes from working together in a group and the motivation that may be absent in a usual gym set up. In a group and with support of other participants, it becomes easier to keep motivated and to push one further and harder.
There are many variations of boot camp and while many have a drill sergeant like person in charge with military training on the agenda, many others do have a softer approach. However the common point among different kinds of training is that the group dynamic helps to motivate people to achieve their goals.
Many boot camp fitness programs offer nutritional advice as well, and the intensive program is designed to make a person make a lifestyle change that will include regular exercise.
Boot camp fitness has made the transition from military exercise yards to parks, and other public places where we now often see groups of people sweating through jumping jacks, and park bench pushups with a regimental seeming person in charge.
While the work outs are tough, and you may still have to do leg lifts, crawl sideways and do quick sprints, the atmosphere is perhaps a little more relaxed. It is perhaps less like the Marine Corps, since the emphasis is more on encouragement, camaraderie and personal growth.
The reason that many prefer boot camp fitness programs over an unstructured gym workout is that working out by oneself can be boring. In such a setting a person may find that they have stopped challenging themselves and have settled into a rut making no progress.
The other great advantage is that boot camp takes the benefit of the outdoors. Come rain or shine, sleet or snow, the outdoors can be refreshing, invigorating and just fun! And yes fun can be one of the elements of boot camp fitness, even though the term fitness has a “kick your butt” message of intensity.
Whether it is fat loss, regaining strength or simply the pursuit of good health, boot camp fitness, is a back to the basics kind of program that relies on old fashioned high octane exercise to get you back in shape.