Living — Week Four: Adding diet to the mix

Week Four: Adding diet to the mix

By Kristen Burgess

Hippo staffer tries her luck in boot camp and finds herself with extra energy

Kristen Burgess, 30, is getting fit for the summer through a local “boot camp” fitness program. Better yet, she’s sharing her experience via a weekly column.

Last week’s article was focused on all the discouragement (people telling me I wouldn’t make it) I have received since starting boot camp. This week I am less angry and more focused.

This experience is giving me more than physical strength; it also is adding to my inner resolve. Over the last year I have been in a rut and was more concerned about making the people around me happy. Living that way eventually takes a toll. This training is something I am doing all for me.

As we start week four, I am noticing a change in my level of strength. I am adding weight on squats, rows, chest press and bicep curls. I have never had upper body strength until now. My legs are getting more defined and I notice that my butt is harder. I can’t say I like the changes yet, but it is a start. 

What I do like is the energy I have. I sleep better and feel more energized throughout the day. I am able to run 15 minutes straight now. Trainer Cathy Hall is a great cheerleader when I am huffing and puffing and feeling the burn from my toes to my hips.

During each installment of TrainingZone’s boot camp, the support from the group is amazing. Everyone encourages everyone else and keeps it fun. The group is a perfect size, allowing trainer Mark Hall to make sure everyone is keeping their form and not risking injury.

My favorite parts of boot camp are the sprints with resistance bands, the weighted ball work and all the fun. The one thing I have the most trouble with is the hill run. I am determined to get better at it each week starting, of course, this week. I think if Cathy and I push each other a little more we can do it. We have become quite competitive in a fun way.

I also have decided to really start eating better. I sat down with Mark and got some tips on diet. He suggests eating five times a day — three meals and two snacks spaced out every three and a half to four hours. He told me to try to balance each meal with a combination of lean protein, carbohydrates and a little fat.  He gave me a lot of ideas about food choices and talked with me about “good” carbs and fat and “bad” carbs and fat. 

On May 30, I started my new “diet.” Actually, I would rather refer to it as a different way of eating than a diet. Of course my goal is to lose a little weight but the numbers don’t matter to me as much as how I feel and how I feel I look.

Look for Kristen’s  progress each week.  Kristen will be doing TrainingZone’s outdoor “Boot Camp”and having personal training sessions two days a week for weight training. For more information on TrainingZone’s “Boot Camp” Call Mark or Cathy at 471-1009 or visit

Another local ‘boot camp’

Fit Wise Personal Training  (660-1195) also offers a boot camp, one hour a day/five days a week. All abilities are welcome and the session run all summer.

- Kristen Burgess

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