Even if you have the most motivated boot camp group in the world, from time to time it’s going to be tough for them to get out of bed and come to your class.
If you always take your charges through the same sort of routine, they will start to burn out and peel off, one or a few at a time, unless you have fresh fun workouts and fitness games to place before them.
Sometimes these new workouts can take the form of an adventure race you are all going to do together, or a particular weight loss goal. However, there are some mornings when having a new, creative boot camp fitness game can lift everyone’s spirits — and their performance levels as well.
In Sparta and Athens, there was, of course, no cable television; instead, one of the most popular forms of entertainment involved a trip to the amphitheater to watch a tragedy or comedy. If you can find a local amphitheater or even a stadium that allows you to come in and run the stairs, this is a great way to make some Spartans of your own. Have a box of coins (the older-looking, the better) handy.
Start out with a half mile warmup of easy running, at a conversational pace. This is just to wake up the body and get the heart rate up.
Then split your group into teams of four. Make sure that the teams have roughly equal levels of fitness. Each group must complete as many rounds of the following exercises as possible:
Run up the stairs x 5 Push-ups x 40 Body squats x 40 Inverted Rows x Plank x 1:00 (one minute).
Once EACH member of a team has completed that circuit, one member gets to come get a coin from you.
They can do the exercises in any order; while a couple of them are on the stairs, the other two can be doing one of the strength exercises. After 20 minutes, the team with the most rounds has true Spartan glory for the day.
If your group still has energy, pair them up and send them sprinting up those stairs, racing to the top. Have everyone go two or three times. Then cool down with some stretches.
Breakfast at the All-England Club
While you’re not going to break out into a tennis match, you can incorporate some tennis balls into a fun speed workout. Have your charges do a dynamic warmup (high knees, butt kicks, karaoke both ways, toy solider, jogging), while you lay out two rows of 10 cones, with about 10 yards between each cone.
Write an exercise on each of the 20 tennis balls with a black sharpie, and put the balls on top of the cones.
Split your group into two fitness-equal teams, and then put the cones on the balls. Line the teams up at the start of the lines of cones. When you tell them to start, the first member will run to pick up one of the balls in that team’s line.
He brings it back, and everyone on that team has to complete that exercise. After that exercise is done, another member returns the first ball (making sure it stays on top of the cone) and grabs a second one. If you’re feeling really energetic, have the waiting team members do jumping jacks or crunches while they wait.
Here are some ideas to put on the tennis balls:
25 mountain climbers
10 bunny hops
20 body weight squats
10 tuck jumps
1 lap around the entire park
10 squat jumps
20 plank hip twists
10 jackknife for each leg
The losing side has to do 25 burpees!
If you want to take your group to Norway, have them do a team Fartlek run (intervals of sprinting and jogging).
If you want to go back to the Old West, an Indian run is always a good exercise. In groups of at least five, keep the rear person always sprinting around to the front of the group as the rest jog, and you make your way around a track.
Your bootcamp will be much more effective (and successful) if you keep things interesting, and bring new bootcamp fitness games from time to time.
Your clients will enjoy it, and the change in exercises will keep their results sky high.