After getting the go-ahead from my physio to start running again and focus on speed rather than distance, I was finally able to sign myself up for one of the hottest new studios in town – Best’s Bootcamp. Rewind to two months ago and you’ll see that this was one class I wanted to try as it offered the best of both worlds – cardio and strength. I can only comment on the Bootcamp as I have not tried the cycle sessions YET. But here’s the lowdown on Best’s Bootcamp and how it can help you sweat it out this summer.
A well-equipped studio
When you arrive in the former Fitness First gym, you’ll be amazed at the size. With plenty of treaders, boxes, weights and apparatus organised to make the most of the space, Best’s Bootcamp is well-equipped for their classes. There are two video screens and the audio is great so you can actually see and hear the instructor during the floor exercises and throughout the class. It’s dark inside and lit so you feel like you’re clubbing. Instead you’re challenging your body to become stronger, fitter and leaner.
Split sessions to work up a sweat
Every session is different and I’ve been to three so far but what I’ve learnt is that this is by no ways easy. Essentially, the sessions are roughly split into three and follow a pattern similar to this: – six minutes running, six minutes on the floor, seven minutes running, seven minutes on the floor, seven minutes running, seven minutes on the floor, stretch, and then you’re done (and drenched in sweat).
When I say running, this does not mean simply plodding along but a mixture of hills both incline and decline and sprints. Did I mention you sweat?
The running segment is over pretty fast and then you’re onto the floor lifting dumbbells, planking, swinging kettlebells, crunching those abs, lunging…Again this is over before you know it and you’re back on the treader again. When the class is full, you get used to switching with someone on and off the treader – or as they like to call it being a part of the “tread army”.
Great for runners
I’m a huge fan of the Best’s Bootcamp-style classes for runners as it works different muscles and builds on your strength and speed. As someone who spent years running distances, I think it’s important to shock your body sometimes, which Best’s Bootcamp certainly does. I’ll never feel totally comfortable on the treadmill as I prefer to control my own speed but it does force you to go faster than you may do normally. And as every runner knows, improvements happen when you challenge yourself.
Good advice and friendly staff
Admittedly, the classes at Best’s Bootcamp are not particularly original in terms of format. What stands out for me however is the knowledge of the instructors. They do make suggestions and correct you if you are hunching when lifting a kettlebell and are happy to offer advice after class. This makes all the difference and is one of the reasons I go to classes. I want to learn how to exercise more efficiently without injury.
Post-class you also receive a lavender-scented cooling towel from one of the friendly staff outside and sometimes a glass of rose wine! Yes, they have the balance right. You also receive a towel for a shower which I have yet to try (I cycle home afterwards so there’s not much point!).
At a recent class organised by Active In Style, I got to try one of their many smoothies. Very tasty.
Best’s Bootcamp is definitely one to add to your list if you’re looking for a surefire way to improve your speed and strength. The classes are structured well and the instructors are all happy to help. I come out feeling like I’ve done a workout and that’s why I’ve returned and am making it a regular weekly class via ClassPass.
To find out more and book a class, go to www.bestsbootcamp.com