I’ll let Lori tell the rest…and thank you Lori for inspiring others!
I have been trying to compose this for quite sometime now. Finally it is done!
I started bootcamp a year ago after becoming fed up with the “light living” orders given to me by my back care team including doctors, physios, chiropractors, occupational health (and the list goes on). Just over 3 yrs ago I was in a car accident, fractured several vertebrae in my neck and compressed discs, irritated facet joints, you name it!! The pain took over my once very active life. From being a competitive athlete in several sports, a busy mom and an ICU nurse to “light living”, no work outs, no sports, no activity beyond walking and limited lifting/carrying, daily trips to appointments for IMS (physio), laser (chiro), injections (radiology), ablations (neuro) and having my work colleagues pick up the physical slack for me. I lived from ice and heat pack to ice pack and analgesic to analgesic. I behaved and did as I was told. I was miserable!
Then, one day I had had enough and in the midst of great frustration I found Shawna and her bootcamp. After explaining my situation, assuring her that I could get my back care team on board and her eagerness to get in touch with my physiotherapist to ensure that my bootcamp experience would be both productive (physically and emotionally) and not cause further injury, I signed up. My reasons for signing up were not the typical ones. I wanted to get moving again! I missed the endorphins, missed the “me” time and missed the feeling of a good sweat. I had no real desire to lose any weight or “change my body” but what has happened since has forever changed me.
I began bootcamp slowly, no weights, active range of motion only, easy on the cardio (though my braindoes not often cooperate with “take it easy”). Shawna kept a close eye on me, found modifications for every exercise that was potentially a no no and she often asked about how I was feeling and what my therapists were advising. She also sent me emails (which have become facebook comments) and kept me motivated and showing up on days that I may not have felt up to it. I had to admit to that for the first two weeks I had no back pain but believed it was because the rest of my muscles hurt so badly (but a good bad). I was so distracted by the build up of lactic acid in the muscles that had been asleep for three years that my back pain became “what back pain?” LOL.
So, I marched forward and month after month I was able to slowly increase my weights and quickly decrease the amounts of narcotics I was consuming!! Amazing! Years of drugs and therapy and here I was working out at bootcamp and finding myself in less pain than ever! Being the former athlete that I was, I was hooked. In the first month of bootcamp another transformation started to occur. Call it a side effect if you will. I lost over 5 lbs and 7 inches. Five pounds and seven inches?!? Where did that come from? I was quite surprised. I knew I had gained some weight but had hit it well enough over the years and I certainly had not expected the dramatic change to my body that had happened just by getting out to camp and get the blood flowing again. Even without the weights!
Fast forward 12 months and I am still loving every moment of bootcamp, though those who have been there with me often witness to my “make it stop” face and snarky (but fun) comments directed at the mistress of misery and her capable assistant trainers. I have lost countless inches and over 20 lbs. 20!!! My back is stronger than ever and my back care team are amazed at how much core stability and back strength I have gained. AND I look fantastic! So fantastic that my husband (also a former athlete) couldn’t bear to be left behind and is back training on his own so he can catch up. LOL.
I owe the renewed spring in my step as well as the rediscovery of my mental and physical health to Shawna, her bootcamp, her blogs and her quick to catch me cheating or slacking comments on FB. A caution to those of you who friend her – do not FB about your high fat, high calorie indulgences unless you want to get busted! Do I still have bad pain days? Of course I do but I still go to bootcamp every morning I can to get what I can moving and training, all the while knowing those good endorphins and the rich oxygenated blood can only help the chronic pain in my back, and hoping that I might be able to work hard enough that the lactic acid build up in my other muscles will take overtake the pain again. LOL. Having a place to go and having someone to encourage me, celebrate successes with me, share in my disappointment on the bad days and keep me going has me feeling better than ever day after day. I really do miss bootcamp when I can’t get there and will actually go through moody withdrawals if the universe interferes and I miss a few days in a row! Bootcamp has truly changed my life. Thank you Shawna for believing in me, encouraging me and metaphorically holding my hand through this past year. You have me hooked forever!!
If you’re interested in my boot camp, you can find more info here: www.calgarynwbootcamp.com
If you want to ‘train’ with me, but can’t get to my boot camp, I have a virtual program here: www.calgarynwbootcamp.com/247.html
Aaaand, if you have an inspirational story of how you’ve transformed your life and body, please contact me at: firstname.lastname@example.org or comment below.