Life After Bootcamp

July 16th, 2012

You are probably wondering why Molly Hopkins, the laziest of all people who sits on her backside for a living would go to a Bootcamp in the first place? Well, as a writer I believe it’s easier to write about what you know. You can morph yourself into your character better if you have ‘lived the story’. That’s not to say that if I’d written The Da Vinci Code I’d have popped out and murdered a couple of cardinals. Or if I wrote Erotica that I’d be rolling around in a lace corset on my lounge floor with my postman, (actually he’s quite nice . . .no, no! I would never do that). I just decided that if I was going to do a good job of crafting a credible Bootcamp environment, then I’d better experience it for myself. And so I did.

Everyone makes friends at Bootcamp. It’s impossible not to, because you spend so much time in each others’ company (and I’m talking dusk to dawn). Girls that you’ve only known five minutes swiftly become your confidants and you find yourself blubbering about your diet and weight-loss failures, because you’re morbidly interested in their diet and weight-loss failures. And before you know it, you’ve spilled the beans on your finances, sex-life and what you really think about your in-laws. It really is a sisterhood bonding situation; it brings a bunch of women together that may not cross each others’ path under normal, or indeed any circumstances. It’s School Dinner Lady befriends High Court Judge. You have nothing in common as individuals, but what you do have in common is the fact that you don’t want to do a Circuit Class at 7 o’clock in the morning, but you do want to get rid of your bat-wing arms. And you don’t particularly want to go on a four mile hike, but you do want a couple of inches to magically drop off your backside. You find yourself rallying energy and pushing yourself to physical limits that you didn’t think possible, because you’re conscious that your new friends are plodding to your pathetic pace on yet another death-defying country ramble. And then you turn around and realise that someone is behind you, and you know how desperately that girl wants to succeed, you find yourself suddenly energised and linking arms with her. And for a mile or so you are the strong one (and I say a mile or so, because I was never the strong one for more than that). And OK, you might get stuck with a show-offy gym bunny type that can do everything better than you can, but even she comes in handy because you find yourself tormented with jealousy and determined to show her what you’re made of. And anyway, she’s probably the one with no rhythm who can’t dance Salsa or Jazzersize to save her life.

I’ve kept in touch with a few of the girls I met at Bootcamp. One of my new friends moved house and by coincidence now lives about a ten minute drive from me. And get this . . . we’ve both joined the same gym. And OK, so we don’t actually go to the gym! We swim and lollop around in the Jacuzzi and cremate ourselves in the sauna and steam room. But, and this is an enormous but . . . we do the classes. We’ve been to Glide and Tone, Salsa and Body Pump. And I will do a class even when I can’t be bothered because she talks me into it. And on the rare occasion that I have a sudden uncharacteristic bolt of energy and she can’t be bothered, I shame her into coming with me. You know who you are, Ali.

I think it’s important that you choose the right Bootcamp for you, especially if you’re a novice. You don’t want to find yourself in a Siberian Gulag situation. I went to Brealy Bootcamp in Berkshire. It was definitely the right choice for me; I particularly appreciated the pre-camp advice and also the post-camp support. Three cheers for Julie Brealy (founder and trainer).

I’ve been told that It Happened at Boot Camp is a fun read; I had a great laugh writing it (I honestly did). It’s fiction, of course, but I think I’ve managed to weave a thread of credibility into the storyline and portray what you might expect from a Bootcamp experience. My advice is . . . go for it! You might always regret not giving it a try, but you will never regret having experienced it once you’ve been (well you might . . . sort of, if you are really, really lazy). I loved it (once I was home). No, seriously, I did enjoy it —  in fact, I’m planning another visit. And I’m sure you will enjoy it. too.

You can find out more about what really happened at Bootcamp here!

It Happened at Boot Camp is out this Thursday and is yours for just 99p!

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Posted in: From the Author by Carleen Peters on July 16th, 2012

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