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boot camp

We Tried It: Lacey Stone’s SWEAT Week NY Outdoor Boot Camp

Written on November 12, 2013 at 2:21 pm , by

All smiles from start to finish. Now that’s a workout!

Written by Alena Hall, editorial intern

Last month, I headed over to the Astro Turf Pier on the West Side just before sunrise to meet up with celebrity trainer Lacey Stone. Her neon orange sweatpants glowed against the green field filled with her local followers ready for another day of her SWEAT Week NY outdoor boot camp. The hour-long leg and butt workout began promptly at 6:30 a.m. when she blew the whistle hanging around her neck. What a way to start your day!

Stone’s training persona was even more vibrant than her workout apparel, barking orders all the while joking excitedly and sharing quite a few cheesy puns with the group. I laughed more than I winced through her tough routine, something I had yet to experience in any other group fitness setting. Combining just the right amount of high intensity cardio moves and bodyweight strength training, Stone’s contagious enthusiasm motivated the entire group through non-stop exercises.

The early bird boot camp utilized all of the surrounding elements of the park: the cement side walls served as plyometric boxes, the poles lining the turf field marked each leg of suicide runs, and the pier itself served as a timed running loop on which we raced one another. Toward the end of the hour, as we started losing steam, Stone grouped us into teams to instill a fun sense of competition that made everyone give it their all.

Stone’s no-frills approach to fitness made each participant leave excuses at home and commit to the butt-blasting workout—and it worked! It’s always interesting to see how using back-to-basic moves in a unique outdoor space can make such a difference. Plus, few workouts can beat getting your butt kicked by the hilarious Lacey Stone as the sun rises over the Hudson River around you.

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We Tried It: Camp David Outdoor Boot Camp Class

Written on July 19, 2011 at 12:08 pm , by

TK and Lauren push it to the limit.

Push it to the limit.

Written by Theresa K. Brady, editorial intern

After one day at Camp David, you’re sure to LookBetterNaked —the mantra of DavidBartonGym. The free (yes, free!) boot camp class offered by the gym is designed to burn fat and build muscle through intense cardio drills, agility training and core strengthening moves. But this class is for you, even if you’re not a gym junkie—it’s entirely outdoors! Last Tuesday, I made my way to the gym’s Uptown location in New York City to experience the Camp David for myself.

Wasting no time, trainer Carlos Frias started the class with a brisk jog to the Great Lawn in Central Park. He led our group of 12 to a small picnic area where we completed sets of lunges and cardio drills. Although the drills were simple like running in place and jumping jacks, we all were dripping sweat! After finishing loads of squats, it was time to work our upper bodies.

Theresa (left) and Lauren share sweaty smiles with boot camp instructor Frias.

Theresa (left) and fellow intern Lauren share sweaty smiles with boot camp instructor Frias.

Using picnic tables, we performed multiple reps of push-ups and triceps dips. (Frias made sure to help each person individually with this section to prevent any injuries.) We ended the class with a light jog, some stretching and a short walk back to the gym.

The best part? All the positive reinforcement! Frias is all about making his recruits feel great about the hard work they put into the class. “There you go” and “that’s right” seem to be his personal mantras.

Camp David is great for people of all ages and fitness levels. The best part? You don’t have to be a member of the gym to attend. Camp David classes are offered at the DavidBartonGym New York City Uptown, Miami and Seattle locations until September 1. Find out more at DavidBartonGym.com!

Get Your Burn on at Barry’s Bootcamp!

Written on July 14, 2011 at 5:19 pm , by

We’re midway through summer, but that doesn’t mean you should forgo the workouts for lazy days on the beach (or sleeping in on weekends)—keep up the hard work you’ve been putting into your body and try something new! This morning I was sweating it out at the infamous Barry’s Bootcamp in New York City, arriving straight from sunny California just two months ago, and it was just the butt-kicking I needed to get my booty in gear for my upcoming marathon training. With Monday’s first day to check off my marathon training plan, I really needed to give myself that budge to get my running back on track.

Run Run Run...getting ready for that 26.2 for November! (Photo courtesy of Barry's Bootcamp)

I’ve been on a steady, and totally desirable plan, of thrice-weekly SoulCycle classes, and due to the intensity of this style of Spinning (and awesome instructors who push you to limits you didn’t know you had), I found that I’ve picked things up a couple of notches on the treadmill. All that huffing and puffing and pushing myself over the “hill” during Soul classes has really increased my VO2 max and helped me go from a 6.2 treadmill sprint to an 8.5! Thanks Soul-sistas!

What I wasn’t ready for when I came to Barry’s (but welcomed with sweaty arms),was the butt-kicking intervals of what they call treadmill “treads” followed by the strength-training routine for my back and shoulder muscles. When I hit the gym by myself, this is something that I normally do (20 minutes of high-intensity sprints on the treadmill, followed by a date with the dumbbells)—however, my body was not prepared to do this no-nonsense routine twice in one hour. The class started off with 15-minutes of incline runs and uber fast-paced sprints, followed by a 15-minute routine on the floor (we did Around-The-Worlds, Car Drivers, Arm Circles, and lots of on-the-mat core work). We then repeated the run/strength circuit again.

Whew…call me defeated once class came to an end! But what an awesome way to get back on that treadmill, with a nice mix of weight-training moves too. Between Spinning, boot camping, and overall intense workouts, I hoping to kill it on my first full marathon course come November.

I took some interns along and here’s what they had to say:

Instructor Natalie Uhling showing off a killer compound move. (Photo courtesy of Natalie Uhling)

Samantha Shelton, 21: “It was definitely a tough class but I loved it! I was sweating within the first five minutes and really felt the burn with every move. I’ve never done reverse flies or cranked the treadmill up to that high speed before, so it was intense. The great music, hard-core instructor and pulsating energy definitely kept motivating me to work hard!”

Danielle Paquette, 22: “Barry’s was such a challenge for a yoga girl like me, but the intensity of the class really pushed me harder than I’ve ever gone. There’s nothing like sweating to great dance tunes to get in the zone—I felt like I could take on the world after the session ended! The enthusiastic regulars really made me want to try to keep up with them. I’ll be back to improve my treadmill sprint speed.”

Are You Fit for Boot Camp?

Written on July 14, 2011 at 1:27 pm , by

Drop and give me 20! (Photo by Amy Postle)

When I first started taking group fitness classes, I used to gravitate towards yoga and Pilates workouts. I’ve learned to switch things up since then, but I’ve definitely gotten used to the Zen attitudes of lots of yoga and Pilates instructors. So yesterday, when my friend and I took an abs class with a new instructor, we received a shock. Instead of a smiling, petite woman in spandex, we were greeted by a barking drill sergeant-like male trainer.

The 30-minute class consisted of jumping jacks, mat exercises, more jumping jacks, squats with twists, push-ups, planks, and yup, more jumping jacks. Our trainer walked around the room to make sure everyone was doing the proper exercise but also to push us to keep going. This guy was not going to accept my “This is too hard—time for a break!” cop out. A part of me wanted to know if those 30 minutes were over yet, but I was too busy going from one exercise to the next to even look at the clock, and before I knew it class was over. Phew!

I’ll admit, having more pressure made me push myself harder (and having someone nearly twice my size hovering over me helps, too). And it also made me curious how I’d fare in a real boot camp. Have you tried boot camp workouts? Or do you prefer more relaxed classes with laid-back instructors?