“Exercise is king, nutrition is queen, put them together and you’ve got a kingdom.”
— Jack LaLanne
© 2021 Manatee Fit Body Boot Camp | All Rights Reserved | |
“As I reached the top of the stairs, I was out of breath. My kids begged, ‘Daddy, play with us!’ but after a minute, I was saying, ‘Kids, leave dad alone.’ When taking the kids to play in the back yard, I would ride on the lawnmower so that I did not have to walk back up the hill.
“After joining Fit Body Boot Camp, I posted my pictures on Facebook with the caption, ‘Why didn’t someone tell me I was that big?’ The scary thing is that not only did I not realize that I was that big, but I also did not realize that I was that lazy and neglecting my health and my family.
“I had convinced myself that it was no big deal; I will go on a diet tomorrow, or I will make time for a healthier lifestyle later. Then my wife Shanna found FBBC. She asked me to do it with her. Immediately I started with the excuses: I’m too busy, I can do it myself, I don’t have time, I don’t want to. She stayed on me and finally said, ‘I don’t care if you do it, but I am doing it.’ So, I agreed to do it on one condition: we do it right, and we push each other. To that, she agreed. We would have never imagined how much more that would become.
“We started week one on Saturday, planning our meals for the upcoming week together. Monday came fast, and Shanna went to the 7:45 a.m. class. When she got home, she looked at me and started to tell me about it. I stopped her; I told her I didn’t want to know. I went to the 9:15 a.m. class and I made it about 4 minutes before I had to hold back the urge to throw up. How could something this easy be this hard? I was an athlete, right? I proudly served this country as a Military Police officer. Where did that guy go? It was at that moment that I could finally see the big, lazy, and unhealthy me. Now I could see what I had been doing to myself and my family. It was time to fix that.
“Twenty-four boot camp sessions later, I had lost just over 10% body fat. My wife and I had made an incredible change and committed to it. However, Shanna was a bit discouraged as she was only at around 4%. I told her, ‘Stay the course, babe. You can do it. Don’t give up. You look amazing.’ This lit a fire in her, and she decided not to let me take all the glory.
“A few more weeks down and Shanna lost 17 pounds, and 12.5% body fat. What a comeback! When it was time for me to weigh in, I had lost 50 pounds on the dot and almost 21% body fat. I felt like a different guy, and I certainly look like one.
“FBBC transformed my wife and me in so many ways. We both feel great; however, the thing we could never repay is the impact it has had on our family. You see, we eat healthy now, so the kids eat healthily. We are active now, so the kids are active. My daughter asks to work out with us; she wants to work out! We play, walk down and back up the hill, and go to the trampoline park, where Mom and Dad now have to pay to jump as well because the kids can’t have all the fun.
“I am so proud of what Shanna and I have accomplished, and we have certainly become ambassadors for fitness, eating healthy, and of course, FBBC. We share our story with whoever will listen. However, it is hard to fathom how many people one person affects.
“I have found that the most effective way to impact their lives is to live my life the right way. Set the example because someone is always looking at you, learning from you, and trying to be like you. Think about it, if the people around you become like you, is that a good thing or a bad thing? What kind of example do you set when you think no one is looking?
Thank you, Fit Body Boot Camp!”
— Matthew Lampkin
“I have a handful of issues that slow me down, but I no longer let them stop me. For 22 years, I had severe endometriosis and uterine cysts. Treatment resulted in four surgeries, including a hysterectomy and appendix removal at 37 years old. I also have ongoing issues with asthma and mitral valve prolapse.
“On day one of the Fit Body Boot Camp, I had a biopsy of a lump in my breast. I still went to FBBC the morning of the biopsy and the next day. Thankfully the lump turned out to be non-cancerous. On day two, I started a new full-time job requiring extended hours and intense training.
“For many years I was living in a body I was ashamed of. I was continuously tired and depressed. I knew I needed a major change in my life. Instead of allowing pre-existing conditions and unusual circumstances get in the way I committed to my decision. I followed the Fit Body plan, and now, I am no longer tempted by unhealthy foods. My cravings for carbs and sugar are now gone! I consistently attended workouts six days per week at FBBC, even accomplishing a double, for a total of 48 sessions! I am now stronger and have more endurance. I modify the exercises as needed and always do my best. I love the variety of workouts, and the trainers are amazing!
“My life has changed for the better! FBBC is a supportive, positive environment with no judgment. From day one, I felt a part of the family, and I’ve formed strong friendships. I’ve learned how to treat my body and am determined to continue making healthy choices. I have lost 35 pounds, 8.4% body fat, and 14 inches. I went from a pant size 12 to a size 4. I have more energy, I am happier, and I have self-worth again. My family, friends, and co-workers have noticed the changes and are inspired! I brag about the amazing results of Fit Body Boot Camp. Thank you for creating such an outstanding facility where positive life changes happen daily!”
— Christy Golden
“Days after joining a different gym in the area, my friend asked me, ‘Hey, do you want to try this new Fit Body Boot Camp Gym?’ At first, I was extremely hesitant. I have the cliché story of trying every diet and gym regime possible and nothing sticking. I would see amazing results, and then they would go away almost instantly. That all changed the moment I walked into my first 5 am session at Fit Body. From the workouts, atmosphere, accountability, coaches, weekly mantras, and everything in between, I knew that I was walking into a place I would love.
“I have always been ashamed, self-conscious, or nervous for the way I looked. Posting the first photo from over a year ago is one of the most courageous things I have ever even considered. Without this newfound confidence and self-love that I gained from FBBC, I wouldn’t be where I am today.
“I started with a 6-week challenge and immediately signed up for a membership. Since that first day, I have lost a total of 40+ pounds and 30 inches.
“I have gained a new family. My fellow 5 am boot campers have been an amazing support system. Waking up at 4:10 AM is hard, but they make it so worth it! #ZeroDark30 Crew
“The trainers/staff have been nothing but supportive from the beginning. Ellen was my first coach and met with me multiple times post-challenge to make sure I can be successful with my nutrition. Jamohn, Jeraca, Josh, and Taryn are always waiting for me with smiling faces and ready to push me to my limits. They walk in the gym determined to give us a good push. I’m so lucky to have found them and this gym when I did. (I’ve never smiled so much at the gym, all thanks to them).
“I have gained a new outlook on life. I am finally happy with my physical and mental state. Not only have I become physically stronger, but I have become mentally stronger as well. 30 minutes doesn’t seem long, but when you’re pushing yourself to your limits, you see something within yourself grow. I have gained confidence and self-love. I have gained a new me. Joining Fit Body has been nothing but amazing. I am so happy I decided to join!
“I now recommend EVERYONE to Fit Body. I have even convinced my mom to join with me for the previous 6-week challenge! It’s great when we can work out and grow together. It is a truly amazing place that is always changing lives. I know it changed mine!”
— Allie Hughes
“I kept seeing Fit Body Boot Camp on my way to and from work, and something inside kept telling me to check it out. I was always tired, and my eating habits were terrible. Plain and simple, I was down in life in many ways. I joined, in the beginning, to get myself back in shape, to race Motocross after taking about seven years off, but it turned into so much more!
“Since joining FBBC, I have increased energy, more focus throughout the day and I am extremely happy with what I see in the mirror. I have lost 20 pounds, 21 inches, and 7% body fat, after beginning with a 12-week challenge in January 2018, with my wife, Rebecca. The challenge set me up for success to reach my goals. My coach was always there to encourage and answer questions. All of the coaches are amazing! I would not be where I am today without the entire team.
“My non-scale victory occurred in June 2018, when I survived what the doctor’s call the ‘widow maker’ heart attack. I was 90% blocked which on this day became 100% blocked and I had to have a stent put in. When the doctor visited after the procedure, he asked where I was health wise before joining Fit Body. He said if I would have been in the condition I was before joining, I would have probably not survived.
“Also, my wife Rebecca, who joined with me, underwent surgery after becoming diagnosed with stage three carcinoma cancer of her right kidney, after noticing some abdomen pain during a workout. She is doing awesome now and healing well, still planning to come back one day and continue her journey! Without FBBC and the 12-week challenge, we may have never known about Rebecca’s cancer, and I may not have been able to survive my inevitable heart attack.
“There are no words that can express the thankfulness, love, and respect we have for Fit Body! I have gained so much! I have joined a family (coaches, staff, and clients) that cares about you. They want nothing more than to see you succeed in all aspects of life. I am proud to belong to such an amazing group.
“You have nothing to lose and so much to gain! If you’re thinking about trying Fit Body, do it, and trust the process because it works! Fit Body is so much more than just a ‘gym’; you are joining a family that will always have your back!”
— Adam Dietlein
“I heard about Fit Body Boot Camp when it opened when some ladies at the baseball field were talking about the 6-week challenge. Then I started seeing friends posting on Facebook. I tried to ignore it but then came the Empower program, a 4-week program just for women. I thought, ‘Ok, I will give it a try. I can do most anything for a few weeks.’ I joined initially to lose weight and get into shape. I fell in love with the workouts and the people. I didn’t initially tell anyone what I was doing for fear of failure, but I had nothing to lose.
“Before Fit Body, I was always tired. I would work all day and then come home and want to lay on the couch. I did not like myself at all. I also had no desire to go out places as I felt horrible about how I looked and felt. I struggled with a poor self-image and was eating bad food and some days fast food 3 x a day! I was a very unhappy person who ate food to try and make herself feel better. Food was a reward after a long day, a celebration when things went well and comforted when they didn’t.
“I thought I was too busy to take time to exercise and eat healthily! I work full time, have four children all involved in sports. I am also the president of our local school athletic booster club. I lost myself for many years taking care of my family and putting other’s first. I now realize that if I don’t take care of myself, I am not of much use to others. Because of the relationships that I have developed with other members and the coaches, I am on the journey to becoming the best me I can be. I continue to set goals, and now when I ‘fail’ I don’t give up, I simply start again. Yes, I am still hard on myself at times, but I am learning to love myself, and like the person I am.
“Today, I have so much more energy, and I am way more confident in how I look. I have been able to try things I would not have even attempted before. I have people tell me that I now have a sparkle in my eye. When I started boot camp, I could not do one push up from my knees or hold a dead bug. Now I can do ten regular push-ups and hold a dead bug even with a 20-pound weight! I now have a better relationship with food. While I still love food, I use it as fuel, not as a comfort or reward, on most days! I have also lost 49 pounds, 50 inches, and 15% body fat. I am stronger than I have been in many years. I even have started to have a waist. I started at a size 18 pant and XXL top and am now a size 8/10 pant with a medium size top in most things.
“Take the chance. I was very scared of walking in the door that I would not be about to do anything, and I would be the ‘fat girl’ that came to work out. It was a challenge but I soon realized that it was challenging for everyone, and no one cared what I could not do. The coaches are so encouraging no matter what, and you can do this. If I can do this, anyone can! Just try! Fit Body is more than just a workout place or a place to lose weight – it is a family where you will find a home no matter what size you are or what fitness level you are!”
— Brenda Brown
“I first heard about FBBC through ads on Facebook. I looked at the ads but figured if I joined it would be just another in a long list of ways that I have wasted money on weight loss and fitness, so I didn’t seriously consider it. After my friends, Jon and Kathy, successfully participated in a challenge and joined, they encouraged me to try a challenge to see how it worked for me.
“I started my journey when I decided to sign up in February 2017. I struggled with my self-confidence because of my weight, among other things. I had gained several pounds in the previous few years and was heavier than I ever had been, even with my pregnancies. I hated pictures of myself, and there is a period of time where I have no pictures of me with my children.
“I joined FBBC after success with the first challenge I tried. I wanted to continue to lose weight, gain muscle, and improve my health. For the first time in my adult life, I didn’t dislike, or get bored, working out. I found the environment created by the trainers and other staff to be supportive, non-judgmental, and encouraging. The workouts are short but intense and effective. I like that it’s a different workout every day, so I don’t get bored. I appreciate being told what to do, when to do it, and how to do it safely. The fellow members come in all shapes, sizes, capabilities, and are encouraging and non-judgmental, as well. FBBC is a community and a family.
“After so many attempts to improve my health, my time at FBBC has been the help I needed to increase my self-confidence. Before FBBC, I could never maintain a healthy routine for longer than a few weeks. I didn’t know how to eat well, and I disliked working out.
“Today, I have lost 28 pounds and 18 inches. FBBC is the spark and guide for my success. It has provided me with a workout routine that I enjoy and the education I need for healthy eating. My blood pressure, while never high, has lowered, as has my resting heart rate. Overall, I feel better physically as a result of eating well and exercising. I’m down two clothing sizes. I can flex, and there’s muscle!
“My journey and success have involved my children, as well. My kids keep tabs on me to make sure I go to workouts, ‘Mom, when’s the last time you went to the gym,’ or ‘Mom, you need to go to the gym tomorrow.’ They ask me if I’m ‘allowed’ to eat what I’m eating. They have told me they are proud of me, and that means the world. Throughout this journey, I’ve been asked multiple times about my ‘WHY.’ My four children, Kyria, Jerdon, Talia, and Celia, are my WHY, but I realized along the way that I also do this for myself. I am important, and I am also my reason WHY!”
— Kari Kempema
“After about a week of clicking on the Facebook ad, looking at all the before and after pictures, and watching the videos, I started thinking that boot camp looked fun, not too intense, and the idea of a 30-minute workout didn’t seem all that bad. The next day they posted about the 12-Week Challenge in September 2018, so I talked a friend into joining with me because friends make everything better. Plus, 12-weeks seemed like a reasonable length of time for me.
“I knew I was starting to get older, and it was going to be harder to get the weight off the longer I waited. I struggled overeating. I loved to stuff my face with everything from greasy foods to sweets. I wouldn’t stop when I was full. I stopped when the food was gone.
“The change in diet was extremely hard at first. The first couple of weeks of the challenge, I had many thoughts of why am I doing this? Is it worth it?! Then, about three weeks after joining, people started noticing a difference in my body. All the times I tried losing weight before, I would drop the pounds, but my body never really changed. This time I was feeling stronger, and changes in my body were noticeable, which gave me more motivation. Six months later, those thoughts are gone, and there is no doubt in my mind it is worth it.
“Since joining, I feel better about myself and get compliments from people who haven’t seen me in a while. I like how my clothes fit, and I sleep so much better. My upper body strength has increased, and I have lost 29 pounds and 46 inches. I have been able to turn down chocolate, which felt impossible before. Now I know it’s ok to satisfy my sweet tooth once in a while just not multiple times a day, every day. I’m committed!
“Fit Body is now a part of my life. After the challenge, I signed up for a year and then another challenge. I am just finishing the second challenge, and I am still as motivated as I was the first day. My husband and kids have been very supportive and encouraging of me. Both my teenagers have told me many times that they are proud of me.
“Try a challenge. You have nothing to lose besides fat and inches!”
— Jenn Heemstra
“I am 37 years old, and I have an amazing family made up of my 2-year-old girl Camila, my 7-year-old boy Carlo Adrian, and my beautiful wife, Mary. Together we have gone through everything that life has brought our way.
“My son tells me, ‘Papi, I want you to live 100 years and have a six-pack.’ I have been a member of FBBC since 2015, and it has always been my go-to for life’s ups and downs. My competitive and military traits have both been perfect tools for success. FBBC is like a second family and celebrated my love for overall fitness, but life is a challenge, and I fell off track.
“There seemed always to be an excuse; whether it was working extra hours or trying to find time for the kids. You put yourself on a list, and you always put yourself last, thinking that is the right thing. I was using my lunch break to pick up my son at school every day and eating whatever fast-food meal fit the remainder of my time. Wanting to spend time with my wife and kids, I was going to bed at 1 am and then waking up at 4 am to start my workday. All of these little moments added up- and before I knew it, my health was raising the white flag.
“I became diagnosed with sleep apnea and pre-diabetes. I remember when my wife started filling her ears with bright orange wax plugs to get through the night. She said I would snore to the point of two extremes; louder than a train and then, for what seemed like an eternity, moments where I didn’t breathe at all. I would be out of breath just from sitting down, almost gasping for air in between bites of food. This made me feel like I only had a couple of hours of sleep. I couldn’t even put my socks and tie my shoes because my stomach felt constrained. It was a vicious cycle.
“When the new year came along, it was like an answer to my prayers. The opportunity to try again but to do it for the rest of my life. I took a different route than I had in the past.
“As I mentioned, I have always enjoyed physical fitness, and FBBC made it even more worthwhile. It was my food intake that was off balance. Whenever I went out to dinner, I would tell the waitress that I had a food allergy to vegetables, so that they wouldn’t even think of adding them to my plate. I would then have double the carb or meat portion.
“Now, I have learned to appreciate and build a healthy yet delicious salad, among other dishes. My FBBC support group was amazing! I always thought that the “Caesar salad” was the only good option out there (minus the dressing). Boy was I wrong. I have become an expert at managing my taste buds and being conscious of what I can and should be eating. I was so contagious in my meal preps that my parents invited us to dinner one night (if I could include the picture I would), they prepared a salad like no other!
“I had the perfect pieces to my equation. The best part of all was watching those closest to me look at me in disbelief. That was like fuel to the fire! My co-workers started to join the movement and eat healthier too. My brother even signed up at Fit Body Boot Camp and in 6 weeks, lost 10 pounds.
“I will admit that I went out on a ‘celebration’ dinner/date night and it was then I realized the change. I couldn’t do it; I could not revert to drinking 10 Heinekens and order French fries with loaded mashed potatoes. It wasn’t worth it to me anymore. How my body felt before is something I don’t ever want to feel again. So, after dinner, I got up from that table, and the satisfaction of making healthy decisions that I enjoyed was more filling than anything I else I could have eaten.
“So, although I know that this will always be challenging, it is a challenge I have more than enough skills to face.”
— Jean Carlo Vazquez
“I have always been overweight. For my entire life, I’ve always been “the fat one.” For so long, I never thought that I deserved to be happy or to be proud. I have always felt ashamed of being me and self-conscious of my body. My parents were always putting me on diets, including Weight Watchers and even the “Cabbage Soup Diet” from the time I was as young as eight years old. I remember my siblings and classmates teasing me. I remember my parents telling me I couldn’t eat this or that and that I didn’t need that cookie as they handed me a piece of fruit.
“Even as a child, I never knew how it felt to love myself or be proud of myself. Over time, that lack of self-love turned into an addiction with food. Most times, when I’d reach for a second helping, my parents would say that I had had enough or take the dish away, leaving me embarrassed and ashamed.
“This self-loathing followed me into my early 20’s. I tried to find satisfaction in alcohol and random men to dull the pain. It was nothing for me to be binge drinking every weekend as well as several days during the week. Drunken nights lead to being used by men. Sometimes I was convinced and coerced into doing things I didn’t want to do, yet I thought that if I gave them what they wanted that maybe someone would finally love me in return. For years I lost myself in my overwhelming need to be accepted by others.
“In my mid-20’s, I got into a relationship that wasn’t healthy for either of us. Neither of us knew how to love ourselves, much less each other. I was emotionally, financially, and mentally abused in this relationship for seven years. Instead of helping me fight my inner demons, my partner encouraged them. It was during this time I grew to be the heaviest I’ve ever been. I started smoking drugs every day to escape reality and have an excuse to stay at home and hide from the world. I’d call into work” sick” all the time and lie to my family and friends about my life. I was in denial about how bad it was and how bad I felt. My outside appearance reflected how I felt on the inside. I fell into a deeper and deeper depression. Now at over 400 pounds and not even 30 years old, I was the poster child for the destructive effects of emotional eating. I couldn’t climb three stairs before it felt like my knees were going to give out. I felt like my life was over.
“When I first began working out at Fit Body Boot Camp, my commitment level was next to nothing, my attendance was sporadic, and although it felt great to work out, I couldn’t stick to a consistent routine. I was in the depths of my rock bottom. These were group classes, and I was so ashamed and embarrassed by myself, and how I got to be this big, I could barely leave the house. I loved the idea of being a part of this gym but was trying to stay alive the only way I knew how back then. That cycle lasted four years into my membership, but I never quit. I continued to pay for and renew my membership even if I didn’t go for months at a time because deep down, I believed that this was the only way to accomplish my goals. I wasn’t even sure what my goals were at that point, but I always knew deep down that I had to make a change. As long as I was part of FBBC, there was hope.
“Four years in, I was ready. It was my time and now looking back, I can now say that if not for the coaches and FBBC, I’m not sure I’d be alive at this moment. The coaches became my lifeline. I put all my trust in them and to, as they say at FBBC, “trust the process.” My coach believed in me before I believed in myself. They got me, they understood my struggles and didn’t give up on me or give me more than I could handle.
“My FBBC coach made me dig deep and fight for my own life by teaching me that no one else was going to do it for me. They knew that I would have to take baby steps and work on one small goal at a time because anything more, and I would get overwhelmed. We started with a goal card on the bulletin board and put a tick on it every time I came for a workout. We didn’t work on anything else until there were 30 ticks. Then my goal was to get my water intake up. When I had 30 ticks on my goal card, we worked on me, showing up three times a week for five weeks in a row. They provided me constant support, mentally and physically. They were always there. They would check in with me daily and weekly, especially if they didn’t see me for a few days. It was thanks to the coaching I received at FBBC that I also began therapy. With the support of my coach, my family, and other people in my life, especially the ones I’ve met through FBBC, I got the courage to get out of that toxic relationship. My story wasn’t over, I had to save my own life, and I truly committed to doing that.
“After I established some good habits at FBBC, I finally started seeing results. I lost 30 pounds and 5.6% Body fat in the six weeks! It felt amazing! That’s when I ‘flipped the switch.’ After seeing that I could establish some healthy habits and that I could get results, I was starting to believe in myself. Done with the toxic relationship and starting to take control of my choices, I could begin to see the possibilities my life could take. That voice telling me I was meant to do great things got a little bit louder. For the first time in my life, I was starting to love myself.
“In the first year of commitment and focus at FBBC, I lost 100 pounds! Then, the year after that, I kept going and lost another 50 pounds! I couldn’t believe it, and I lost 150 pounds in 2 years! I felt on top of the world! I finally started to feel proud of myself, something I’ve never felt before. My coach was there for every single pound lost. They were my support on the good days and especially the bad ones. My whole FBBC family was there to support me every step of the way too. As my story was shared on social media, I would get random messages from people I hadn’t yet met that were cheering me on, letting me know that they were in my corner. I felt loved.
“Soon after that summer ended, my job changed, and I was working full-time night shifts. The weight crept back on and suddenly within six months, I realized I had gained 70 pounds back. I was depressed from working the night shifts and gaining the weight. I was miserable and angry that I let myself get to that point – again. I spent so long focusing on losing weight. I had forgotten how to create a balanced life. It didn’t take long for that voice to go quiet again. Could I do great things? Or did I have my shot and blow it?
“FBBC was still there, though, and the coaches were always in my ear and the gym. I never quit. Even though my attendance was sporadic again, and I started to feel that darkness of depression, I knew I couldn’t give up. I fought for this life and saw what was possible. I couldn’t give up now. This challenge has changed my life! I lost 41 pounds and 20 inches in 8 weeks. I hit my goal of being able to say once again, “I’ve lost 150 pounds!” I’ve gained so much confidence in these last eight weeks. I feel like a new person. I’m finally starting to be proud of me and what I’ve accomplished.
“‘Proud.’ I’m not sure if I’ve ever said that about myself. I’ve struggled with that word for as long as I can remember. This challenge has taught me to be proud, no matter how small or insignificant my daily victories appear to others. I’m incredibly grateful that I have FBBC to help me continue to grow as a person and that I have friends and family around me that love and support me even when I find it hard to love myself. I am grateful that I have a good life and breath in my lungs. I’m thankful for everything that I have accomplished up until this moment! I’m living for today, being grateful, and embracing whatever comes my way! I’ve had a lot of ups and downs over the years, but I continue to show up for myself. I don’t hide from the world anymore. That’s what FBBC has done for me. FBBC taught me to fight for my life. Everyday. Today, I am proud of the person I am today because I’ve fought to become her. I plan to get a tattoo that reads “I’m the hero of this story; I don’t need to be saved.”
— Janelle Dykstra
“Physically and mentally, I had reached a plateau. My weight was climbing towards numbers I couldn’t bear to see, and my spirit was flatlining. I had recently undergone an ACL surgery, limiting myself from doing physical workouts. Because of my adversity that I didn’t do well overcoming, I was discouraged and depressed. At the age of twenty-five, I was considered an overweight woman who had many ambitions but fell short because of insecurities.
“I was disappointed with what my life had become and distraught at the thought of where it was going. I needed an opportunity to fix myself. My calling had come, with Fit Body Boot Camp. I took the opportunity instantly. It was a stepping stone for me to take control of my life, the way I want it to be. Joining has changed my physical lifestyle, helped me overcome mental obstacles, and given me a pathway to create a fulfilling life and legacy.
“After tearing my ACL, I didn’t have surgery right away because of my fear of enduring physical pain for a short period. I stalled for more than two years. In the end, I didn’t receive a positive result. I piled myself with food as a way of numbing myself from feeling knee pain. I started to gain weight and developed long-term bad habits. I was not disciplined on how many hours I slept or calories I consumed. I didn’t manage my time and relied on fast-food and dining restaurants 90% of the time. When I made food at home, it was not even healthy. I had late night snacks almost every day. As time went by, I was not able to maintain a consistent and normal weight.
“I finally had surgery because I was fed up with how I was taking care of myself and had hoped that this could be my end of physical misery. Unfortunately, it was too late. I gave up too easily when I felt physical pain and suffering. Even though I was able to do more with my knee, the weight of my fat added aches and signaled me to stop, which I did. I knew that if I worked out, the feeling of pain or suffering would recur; therefore, there was no point of me in trying. Again, I didn’t get a positive result.
“I put myself in that situation by not taking consistent actions to better myself. Since joining FBBC, I finally stopped hurting myself. I developed life-changing and healthier habits. I never thought I could wake up at 5:30 am. Yet, that is what I did five times a week, and I was willing to stay every Saturday for 1 hour. My body recognized my positive progress and persistence. It is natural for me to wake up in the morning without an alarm clock as long as I sleep 7-8 hours a day. I was learning to commit, be consistent, and force myself to become better. My body followed my directions and helped me get there; we were working together.
“I have gotten better managing my time well, to the point where I was able to meal prep and hardly go to any restaurants. 95% of the time, I prepare my food. I learned that my own body preferred me cooking, the food I make had healthier fuel.
“As I started to lose weight on my legs, my knee that had undergone surgery started to feel painless, and the aching has decreased dramatically. My body started to notice this, and it made me want to work out even more. Working out and be aware of what I eat are two of the essentials to my daily life.
“I was able to take control of my actions. I was able to develop a routine that includes working out consistently, going to work, eating healthier, having time with family and friends, and focusing on my ambitions. I no longer have time to find excuses. I have lost 28.7 pounds, which effectively reduced the load on my knee joint by 114.8 pounds and lost 15.5% body fat.
“Before FBBC, I didn’t know that I had put myself into more pain and suffering; not just physically but mentally. The thought of physical pain on my knee had led to the emotional pain that overshadowed my decision. Whenever I found a way to solve a problem, my mind would create the fearful assumption that I would fail. I had developed a lack of self-confidence because of my negative perspective. I was so fed up with how I was feeling inside and made the decision to change.
“Joining FBBC, I was able to break the mental cycle that was draining me. The first day of class, I was given an optional task that would break one of my bad habits; waking up early. The weekly morning routine was unrealistic for me; I had never woken up earlier than 8:30 am, much less 6:30, but I was willing to do it. I wanted to change inside really bad. It was a challenge, but as I started to consistently do it, I felt more energized and looked forward to improving myself.
“I developed the discipline, self-confidence, and the high self-esteem that I longed for. The next optional task was my willingness to change the way I was eating. I had developed really bad eating habits for many years, and I had no limitations on my calorie intake. Food was the comfort that temporarily suppressed my negative thoughts and feelings. With every little change I made on my eating habits, I started to be more positive. I became less stressed, happier, and motivated. Positive emotions were blossoming inside of me that I didn’t know I could develop. I finally felt proud of myself and acquired a new habit by encouraging myself to make more positive changes. I started to create my own tasks.
“First, I committed to sleeping 7-8 hours a day to have clarity every morning. It led to learning how to plan out my day and take control of my life. I was even enthusiastic on how to improve my time management. I prepared the night before, which makes me feel ecstatic to start my day. I started to run my life with logic and efficiency. I developed good habits and will continue to do better. My mind and I were starting to work together and trust each other resulting in positive mentality and emotions. I felt like I could do anything.
“My life was dull, predictable, and cautious. My journey has been a wide awakening. An opportunity that I wouldn’t find anywhere else. My body, mind, and I are working together to become a stronger me. I finally accepted that I must endure suffering to get rewarding results, physically and mentally. I learn to love and encourage myself. I have a highly positive perspective and have been able to overcome doubt. Most importantly, I saved myself. I have never thought I would be considered athletic at 119 pounds and 19% body fat compared to my previous self. As I am rebuilding myself, I feel ready to restart planning on my entrepreneurship journey. I plan on pursuing this next adventure and use what I have learned from FBBC. I can proudly say that with Fit Body Boot Camp, I finally made the jump, and I found myself flying. However, my journey is far from over, and my next mountain awaits.”
— Thidarhod Tep
“I have wanted to give Fit Body Boot Camp a try for a long time, but I was always intimidated to go because I thought it was mainly for women. After scrolling through Facebook one day, I came across three of my friends, and I was impressed by their transformations! That was the motivation I needed to sign up and make a change to improve my health.
“On my first day, I found out that there were a lot more guys than I expected, and everyone was very encouraging. I had no idea that following Fit Body Boot Camp guidelines, I would have as much success as I did. I ended up losing 45.1 pounds, and I lost a total of 37 inches! I think I am a prime example of what Boot camp can do for someone.
“For the first six weeks, I attended one class a day and followed the meal plan. The last two weeks, I did some doubles to try and meet my final goal of losing 40 pounds, and I crushed it! For only 30 minutes a day, I had amazing results.
“I am looking forward to enjoying this summer with my family. I think my kids and wife will be very impressed with how much energy I have. I am most looking forward to water skiing since I haven’t been able to do it in years! I have been unhealthy for such a long time, and I am glad I have made the changes in my life that allow me to live a long, healthy, and productive life. This new year I have found my new me.”
— Craig Kornoelje
“I didn’t know my weight for over four years. I refused to have it taunt me or control me in any way. I enjoyed those years of freedom, but I also lied to myself and hid behind my unwavering belief that we are more than a number, a size, or our looks. I hid behind excuses of being injured, working too much, or just being tired. Although these were all true, they were also excuses.
“There are so many barriers to being active and eating a healthy, nutritious life. They were all barriers that I could have overcome but opted out of even trying. With each passing month of ignoring that number, ignoring being active, ignoring what I consumed, my clothes became tighter, my confidence a little more muted, my smile a little smaller, and my mobility a little worse. I rejoiced in my freedom from that stupid scale and all of the baggage that comes with that number. I said no more. I mean, what the hell is the number on the scale anyway? Isn’t it nothing more than a reflection of the force of earth’s gravity on me?
“I was carving out my new path, even when I could feel the judgment. At a holiday dinner, everyone at the table being asked if they want seconds for dinner, except me. I know how it feels when the compliments of how nice one looks stops. No more did I hear compliments on my clothes, smile, or accessories. I know how it feels to tell or hear others share kind words and admiration on how someone looks but yet not be the one ever receiving the compliment. These were all affirmations that fat shaming and discrimination are rampant in our culture. I was tired of this. I was committed to being fat and happy. To settle in for my new life of being free from the scale.
“I started following powerhouse women like Lindy West and Tess Holliday. I love their authenticity and courage to be fat in a fat-shaming culture. I was inspired. I allowed myself to get fat and to love myself. And I did. I really loved myself. Even at the heaviest weight, I’ve ever been. But, you see, I got lost on my quest to shake mother culture. I was in denial and lying to myself, which I didn’t even realize until I decided to join Fit Body and clean up my diet. Not being active or eating cleaning isn’t a representation of me living authentically. For years I have not been the best version of myself. I felt slow, and I was finding it hard to tie my shoes or bend over. I wasn’t participating in my life in the ways that make me happy, feel good, help me manage anxiety and depression. In fact, my lack of activity and poor eating were feeding some of my biggest demons. I loved myself, I’ll even go as far as to say I like aspects of being overweight, but I didn’t feel good.
“Somewhere along the way, my desire to be fat-positive and love myself missed the point of it all. I became tunneled on just embracing being fat. I went off course. I excused myself from participating in my life, being my biggest champion, pushing myself to be the best version of myself, to be connected with those around me, to be fully engaged in my life. I nailed self-love but checked-out on critical parts of what self-love means to me; like healthy clean eating and being active. It isn’t about the scale or my pant size; it’s about engaging in activities that make me feel alive and living the fullest expression of myself. Somehow, I missed that.
“Last year I decided to do something about this. It started early in 2018, with a focused effort on recovering from the injury that put this all into motion. I knew I couldn’t be active without being healed. By the fall of 2018, I was ready to start working out, and that’s when I found the newly opened FBBC. I found something there that I had never found in a gym before; people that I connected with, that really know me and care about me. FBBC is full of people who cheer me on, push me, and celebrate my successes and help when I’m struggling. These people engage with me outside of the gym with a hike, yoga, or just checking in. At FBBC, I am known, I am seen, and I am good enough.
“Did I mention, from the first time I walked through the door, I was good enough just how I was? So positive and encouraging. If I miss a workout, my coach and other members check in on me. I know this from first-hand experience! During my first few weeks, I worked out 2 to 3 times a week, and I was sore but loved how I felt at the end of a workout. I was sweaty and exhausted yet feeling strong and with a big smile on my face ready to conquer the day.
“I have gained so much more than I have lost. I reconnected and worked out with 9 people that I hadn’t seen in at least six months, many of which it had been years. One of my friends has even joined FBBC, and several others are interested.
“I have lost almost 15% of my body weight. I think back to the beginning when I felt lost and defeated by my choices. It was so hard at the beginning, but each success stacked upon the day before. Before I knew it, I felt like a warrior, capable of anything. It does not matter what I’ve lost; it matters what I’ve gained. Am I where I want to be? No, but the answer to that question should always be no because I am a warrior. I am always restless, never satisfied. There is always a better version of myself I can become, and Fit Body gets that. They are there to embrace me and tell me I’m good enough; I am enough right where I am, and I am free.”
— Roslyn Burmood
“When I started Fit Body Boot Camp, I was determined to make a change. I had always been someone who stayed active and tried to keep in shape, but the slow and subtle nemesis called weight gain had reared its ugly head.
“It didn’t happen overnight. For me, it was a couple of pounds at a time over the course of a few years, and before I knew it, I had gained thirty pounds. At each stop along the way, I would tell myself that I would shed the weight, but it didn’t happen. When it didn’t happen, I would get frustrated, and when I got frustrated, I would eat. It was a vicious and counterproductive cycle that I had gotten myself into, and I had to do something about it.
“About a year ago, I decided to make the year-end resolution so many of us make. I had previously belonged to the local YMCA, but I wasn’t getting the results I was looking for. They had some nice group classes, but they weren’t convenient for my work schedule; therefore, I was unable to attend regularly. I needed to find a gym that not only met my schedule but also provided the group workout experience that I found to be enjoyable.
“A quick Google search of the area led me to find a promotion from a nearby gym giving away three free workouts. Being someone always happy to find a sale, I decided to give it a try. What did I have to lose besides my time? So began my journey at Fit Body Boot Camp.
“When I walked through the doors of Fit Body Boot Camp, I was instantly greeted by the owner. He made me feel comfortable from the very beginning and introduced me to fellow boot campers. Everyone was so friendly, and I immediately felt like I belonged. The coaches were amazing and supportive. In addition, they offered classes all throughout the day. I felt like I had found a gym that not only met my scheduling needs but also provided encouragement along the way to help me reach my goals.
“Things started off great! I was starting to make progress and had lost a couple of pounds. I felt like I was heading in the right direction, but then I hit a detour. I had developed carpal tunnel in both of my wrists from years of typing on the computer at work, and it would require surgery to alleviate the pain. It would have been nice if they could have done both wrists at the same time to get it done and over with, but as explained by the doctor, for sanitary reasons it would be a little problematic. So here we are; I had just found a gym that I loved, and now I needed to take a break and get my wrists fixed one by one. To make matters worse, I had to have an endometrial ablation as well. That’s three surgeries in one year. To further complicate things, I had resumed my relationship with my longtime friend, sugar!
“It was hard when the holidays rolled around. It always starts with Halloween, which leads into Thanksgiving and then into Christmas. I mean, who can pass up a fun size candy bar, a slice of pumpkin pie or a delicious Christmas cookie? It would be offensive to Tina if I didn’t try her ginger snaps, right? Before you know it, voila, the weight had returned.
“Adding insult to injury, I had gained more weight than I had previously lost and was now the heaviest I had ever been. It was time for me to make the resolution once again.
“I have always been super competitive, so when the latest ad at Fit Body Boot Camp was announced, I decided this was it. I was going to move my chips all in and give it everything I had. I weighed in at the beginning of the competition the heaviest I have ever been, at172 pounds and 28.9% body fat. With the help of the Fit Body staff, we established attainable weekly goals. I also benefited from Fit Body’s healthy meal recipes that were easy to follow and also tasted good, which helped tremendously because I am not creative in the kitchen at all.
“I went to Fit Body Boot Camp daily and even doubled up on some days. In addition, I added cardio to my workout regimen. The fat began to melt like butter. I was hitting my weekly goals established by the Fit Body team, and my confidence was soaring. Furthermore, the Facebook community was extremely helpful in keeping me focused on my goals. As each week passed by, I began to like the shape of the person in the mirror more and more.
“With the help of Fit Body Boot Camp, I had exceeded my overall goals. I wanted to lose 30 pounds and ended up losing 37.5. My body fat dropped 10.7%, and I lost 35.55 inches overall. My confidence is through the roof, and I feel better about myself than I have ever before.
“The old me would have reverted to old ways, but the new me is excited to continue down this road, which was paved by Fit Body. Fit Body has changed my thinking about exercise, and I no longer use it as a tool to counter my caloric intake. It has made me realize that this is a way of life and not just the peak of another roller coaster diet. My journey towards sustained healthy living has just begun with the help of Fit Body Boot Camp.”
— Joni Sprout
“My journey began in October 2013. I was a year postpartum with my third baby and had decided it wasn’t going to take me years to get back to my pre-baby weight as it did after my second baby. I was trying to run, ride my bike regularly, and participate in a triathlon, something I had done once a year since 2011. I even did one at six months pregnant with my youngest!
“Everything changed when a friend shared a 2-week breast cancer awareness trial on Facebook through FBBC. I figured, if anything, at least my money would be going to a good cause. I remember walking in the doors for my first session thinking, ‘I’ve got this.’
“Yikes! I was dead after the first class but immediately hooked.
“After my two weeks were up, I knew that this was the only fitness experience which I wasn’t going to end up quitting after a month or so. It’s not like working out in your home with kids hanging on you and housework staring you in the face all while you’re trying to sweat your butt off. I needed a place outside of the home where I could have ‘me time.’ The biggest bonus was having coaches and fellow boot campers there to challenge and encourage me. No one at home was yelling at me not to quit or do more.
“In January of 2014, I joined my first challenge. I was so nervous about the nutrition portion, but I never back down from a challenge, and I needed something to keep me focused. There were times I told myself it wasn’t worth it and that I should just quit, but then thought, ‘Why can’t I have/do something for myself?’
“I have since done several challenges, each with amazing results. I’ve learned how to incorporate the eating portion of boot camp into my family’s lives. It’s was so nice to be able to cook for the whole family.
“Throughout my 3+ years that I’ve been a member, I’ve lost several inches and pounds. My initial goal was to get back to my high school weight of 160, and nearly made it last year, but I’ve come to realize that my biggest goal is to be happy with who I am in the moment. My goal is to accept who I am and be confident in that so I can be a role model for my three daughters. Who said that size or a number on the scale has to be what defines you?
“My goal is to keep increasing the amount of weight I lift; I enjoy when the trainers come at me with heavier weights to see what I can do! If you had asked me three years ago if I would be doing 150 lb. deadlifts, I may have laughed in your face.
“I am also terrible at actually training for events like long runs and triathlons. My training now takes place at boot camp, and it has allowed me to take 2nd in my age group in two triathlons, complete a century bike ride, a 25K, and two 23.1K races. While it may not have been pretty, I did it.
“Every time I work out, I’m making myself not only physically stronger but also mentally stronger. I know trials and challenges will come at me, but I will hold my head up high and do what I can to overcome them. I’ve learned that when you start a journey, you won’t always end up in the place you imagined. I don’t have to be afraid about what may come, but rather a faith that I will end up right where I’m supposed to be.
“I can’t thank the staff and fellow boot campers enough for their support and encouragement! Because of each of you, I leave a better person than when I arrived.”
– Ruth Kuyers