Find out if this fitness trend is right for you. It's not as scary as it sounds.

Our Editor, Marissa Stapley-Ponikowski, shared her fitness experience with a boot camp class in our March/April issue. With a lot of hard work, she found that after two four-week sessions, she noticed change in the tone and condition of her arms and thighs, an increase in energy, and that she began to crave more activity, instead of less, plus healthy food that would help fuel her workouts. Best of all: her skinny jeans fit again.

The boot camp Marissa participated in employs a method called 'Phasic Progression', which helps the body, metabolism and nervous system coordinate for long term results. David Oickle, a bootcamp trainer for Best Body Bootcamp (, says, "It's an effective way to train because it targets multiple energy systems and challenges the mind to continue pushing our limits. Our mental blocks are our biggest barriers."

"Generally, people notice change within the first week," says Best Body Bootcamp co-founder Roger Nahas. "They start feeling better, have more energy and notice they're not as groggy. Within four weeks you'll see changes in strength, you'll see your body tightening up and you'll likely be losing weight as well."

We asked Marissa's trainer, Oickle, some questions you may want to know the answers to if you're considering battling the bulge with a bootcamp regimen.

Q: How do you know if you've pushed yourself too far?
A: "Listening to our bodies is the best way," says Best Body Bootcamp trainer David Oickle. "Some signs to look for are dizziness, not being able to catch your breath or feel ing nauseous. This means it's time to back off the routine for the day. We have back pocket modifications for all exercises that will make all exercises accessible for all fitness levels."

Q: Is it a competition?
A: No way, says Oickle. "You are not competing with the person next to you. Everyone is at different fitness levels. You are there to challenge your own limits, no one else's."

Q: Is it necessary to exercise on the days you don't go to boot camp?
A: "A good general rule is active rest. This means light exercise, walking, playing with your kids, bike riding, anything that will get your joints moving and blood flowing."

Q: What's your favourite boot camp exercise?
A: "I would have to say plank. Plank is an exercise that engages your entire core and is the foundation for most exercises. Plus, there are countless variations."

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