Healthy Food Guide staffer and mother of two, Kirsty Donovan shares her story about taking steps towards a healthier body and mind.
Losing 23 kilos from good eating habits over the course of 2010 proved to Kirsty she had perseverance. But when it came to six weeks of intensive exercise with Fitness Evolved’s Boot Camp in 2011, Kirsty found herself having to dig deeper and found reserves that she didn’t even know she had.
Three weeks to go. This week is a huge uphill effort: running, squats, kangaroo jumps, lunge strides, commando crawls and monkey jumps… hard going! I have really sore knees from the hill exercise but I am still seriously considering Fitness Evolved’s next Boot Camp programme! The early morning routine has become a habit – a habit worth continuing.
Friday’s session is an hour run. I freak out, but get an encouraging text in-between days from Mary our trainer, and I run much further than I would have if I was on my own. I do walk some of the way but I’m pleased I faced the fear!
I haven’t been this sick for years. I’ve got tonsillitis and need to rest until antibiotics kick in. No Boot Camp on Monday or Wednesday. I’m gutted. Will I lose the benefits I have gained? Once midday Friday comes ‘round, my body is itching to move. I can’t wait until Monday so I put on my shoes and head out for a run on my own steam. I have never been a person who ‘heads out for a run’ and I giggle at the thought. I have a revelation: all these years, I have been carrying around the inner voice of me as a child who was teased for coming last, but being able to exercise off my own bat has silenced this negative voice and a positive adult perspective has spoken out. It’s incredible.
The last week! One morning brings torrential rain but rather than loathe it, we just laugh when we have to lie on soggy ground to do sit-ups! When the final session arrives, I’m excited. My goals? To run the 2.2km with no walking and beat my last time, and to do the plank hold for 30 seconds. Several times during the run I just want to walk – my body is crying out for it – but I refuse to give in. I cross the finish line having run the whole way – and I have cut another 33 seconds off my time! I am exhausted but thrilled – and it doesn’t take me as long to get my breath back after the run either – another improvement. Then I also manage to hold the plank for 30 seconds! To mark the end, Mary gives us all a star-shaped key ring as a gift. It is a tangible reminder of what I have achieved and what Boot Camp has meant to me. I treasure it.
What a journey. The physical changes are undeniable and the emotional/mental journey has been life changing. I’ve broken down barriers in my mind about myself and about exercise that I have held on to for most of my life. I am grateful to have had this opportunity and I have signed up to do the next Boot Camp! I can’t quite believe it myself! I really have made some inroads! My base goals through this Boot Camp have been about survival, pushing my unfit body through the exercises and seeing it through to the end. Now, I feel like I am ready to set myself some improvement goals – we’ll see!