Boot camps and fitness camps are popping up everywhere right now, promising to whip your slightly jiggly butt into shape and finally give you the discipline you need to get the body you’ve always dreamed of. Many celebrities swear by this method and people of all ages and abilities all over the western world are also taking the plunge. But does it actually deserve all the hype?
What is a Boot Camp?
The exercises included in this kind of camp will differ depending on the teacher and the ability of the students. However, in most cases the activities take place outdoors whether rain, shine, snow or hail. The main focus is on cardiovascular exercise and raising stamina, so you can expect to be enjoying lots of long runs, hikes and obstacle courses. Further through the course you may also be treated to some serious weight training, utilising dumbbells, exercise bands and other resistance training materials. It’s not all fast paced action, you’ll also do some more chilled out exercises to increase flexibility and muscle movement such as Yoga or Pilates.
This benefit is pretty self-explanatory as it is the whole point of attending a camp in the first place, but it’s still worth mentioning. The intense physical exertion that you will experience in a boot camp will go a long way to helping you get rid of those pesky love handles. As well as, by using exercise as your method to lose weight you will increase your cardiovascular ability, this in turn will give you many health benefits such as lowering cholesterol and also reducing the risk of heart disease. You will also experience an improvement in your general overall fitness levels.
These days, too many of us spend far too much time indoors. We work in an office all day long and come home and sit in front of the TV. This is no good for anyone, and a few days taken out from the monotony of modern life to truly experience the great outdoors has got to be taken as a huge benefit, even if you are sweating your face off trying to run up the steepest hill you’ve even seen in your life.
Exercise makes you happy. This is scientifically proven. When we exercise we release chemicals known as endorphins which enter the areas of our brains that are responsible for emotion and make us a feel a contented joy. Not only is this a benefit in itself but this overload of endorphins can also do wonders for stress management. Being outdoors for long periods, especially in areas of low pollution where the air is more oxygen rich and pushing your body to its hardest are both factors that help to reduce the amounts of cortisol in our systems. Cortisol is the hormone that is directly responsible for the physiological and emotional feelings of stress. The more cortisol you have the more stressed you feel and the more stressed you feel the more cortisol you have.