One evening, Vanya called, asking me to try out a session with Master Bootcamp. I looked at their website, and was intrigued. I could always use a good kick on the butt (in a good sense, of course), and I never say no to a new variety in my workout regimen. As a home exerciser (I am not enrolled to any gym), I do my workout exclusively at home, and it does get boring sometimes. I was going toward the end of a 9-week fitness program called Insanity (more on that in another post). I felt rather burned out with Insanity in this particular week. It would be nice to work out outdoor, in the sun, breathing fresh air. I read that Master Bootcamp incorporates TRX. I have always been very curious about TRX – a suspension training developed by the Navy SEAL. But most TRX training is available in a gym, which I am not ready to commit yet. I jumped on the chance that Vanya offered to go along on a Saturday. Yeah, I was up for it!
What Is It?
A Master Bootcamp session is an hour-long circuit-training workout. It includes strength, cardio and agility conditioning routines, using a variety of equipments and method. Every session has a different theme, perfect for those loving variety and new challenge. One session’s theme may be on core work, the next one on upper body strength, and so on. Depending on theme of the day, the workout may include the following: TRX, medicine ball, jump rope, cones, agility ladder, rifle (no, not the gun), ab roller and/or kettleball. They also often incorporate the Tabata method. The 60-minute clock starts with warm up and ends with stretching
The workout is held at Lapangan ABC Basket Outdoor Senayan, with the entrance just across TVRI, every Saturday on most weeks. The session starts early at 6:00 AM.
Who Are They?
Master Bootcamp instructors are a group of certified personal trainers and fitness enthusiasts whose passion and beliefs are in the power of body fitness in changing one’s life from bad to good, good to better, better to great. They will guide you in performing exercises in the correct forms and they will keep you from being injured. As they are also independent of any gym or institution, you are not hustled into signing up into any membership commitment.
As I mentioned earlier, the workout starts at 6 AM. I was initially not too thrilled about that, but it turned out, I was glad it starts early. At 6 AM, the sun is not in full force yet and the parking spots are still plenty. A Master Bootcamp session lasts for approximately 60 minutes, inclusive of warm up to stretching.
When I arrived at 5:50 AM, the venue was still being propped with agility ladder, medicine ball, and TRX suspension. Was Master Bootcamp reading my mind? These things were exactly what I wanted to try on, honestly! After a quick introduction, we all got down to business…
6:00 AM – Still fresh and not knowing what lies ahead I was wearing… Wait, this is not Today’s Outfit article!
The warm up consisted of jogging several laps around the basketball court, with bouts of sprints and high-knees, followed by some plyometrics (e.g., jumping jacks), plank-holds, lunges, and push-ups (I have a very deep love-and-hate relationship with push-ups). It got my heart rate up but still not out of breath.
Warming up the legs
“Down, One. Down, Two. Down, Three”
Now, to the main workout. Today’s theme was abs. We were put in pairs, and each pair was brought to different areas in the court where equipments were readied earlier. Vanya and I got to do TRX suspension first. Psyched! TRX looks easy – it’s just a yellow/green sturdy rope anchored to poles. Easy, until I actually did it! Being suspended, you are up against gravity and your own body weight. I did sets of different moves, and they were killers. TRX can also be done with your feet on the ground, though by no means it is easy. I held a TRX staff, anchored to the wire wall behind me, while I had to squat back and push the staff forward. My thigh and arms were burning!
I was hating gravity the moment I was doing these!
Next was core and power, using very heavy cords and ab roller. I was skeptical with the ab roller. How hard could it be, you just roll the thing forward. Apparently, I spoke too soon. Rolling forward while maintaining your posture is not that easy. I was especially conscious about my lower back. The trainer jokingly said, “The real world application of this exercise is mopping the floor”. Ngepel, LOL! After the ab roller, came the cords. The move is simple: you rock the heavy cords to make waves. In theory, this is easy, until one of the trainers shouted, “More waves! I need stronger waves”. Astaga! Berat ini, LOL!
Make the waves and push ‘em roller!
For agility and speed, naturally, an agility ladder is used, as well as jumping rope. This session also included medicine ball. The set consisted of three sets, using all three equipments. The first one is agility ladder. You treat the ladder as a kind of markers. The idea is that you jump, run or hop around or over these markers with speed and (duh) agility.
Hopping over agility ladder
The second one is jump rope. I hate jump rope. But it’s one of those humble tools that work well for conditioning your body, and there was no way I could talk my way out of this! You should see Vanya swinging it. She was way better than I was with jump rope! The third one is medicine ball slam. That was one great stress-reliever! You slam the heavy, rubber-covered ball (it doesn’t bounce, don’t worry) to the ground with every might and power you have. Unleash the wrath! (I’m gonna get me one of these)
Vanya rocks the rope and mightily slams the ball!
Yes, I’m tired. Thanks for noticing!
The session ended with stretching out your muscles to keep them lean and long. I always love stretching, it relaxes you and it just feels good.
I was happily surprised that I was sore the next day. My abdominal and shoulder felt it the most (I suspect from the TRX and the ab roller). My legs felt stiff on the evening of the training day, but they recovered quick. Well, I consider delayed onset muscle soreness, or DOMS, to be good. It means my body is challenged to work harder than it usually does, and that, my healthy-seeker munchkins, is what I always want from a new workout.
I don’t usually say this about exercising, but truly, sixty minutes flew by. The first time I asked for the time, 40 minutes had already passed. I grunted and sweated a lot. But at the end of it all, I felt so invigorated, I didn’t even feel sleepy, even though I could use more sleep that day.
Do I recommend you to try Master Bootcamp? YES! Why wouldn’t I? It’s fantastically fun!
Whether you are a beginner or a seasoned exerciser, you will appreciate the toughness of a Master Bootcamp session. Beginners, there is no need to feel intimidated. You may not get all the forms right the first time, but that is the reason why the trainers are there. They will guide you to correct your form and will modify the moves as needed. Stamina, power and strength don’t come overnight. They are gradually built. Obviously, if you are more advanced and you don’t find the move challenging, you are free to ask for a more intense modification. They will gladly show you how.
Vanya and I had loads of healthy fun, we still smiled after having our behind kicked!
If you come as a group, you can contact them in advance to let them know of your needs, and they will be willing to customize the session. Have I mentioned that they are a bunch of very nice people too? Nobody was demeaning. In fact, they were pretty encouraging. But, expect to be pushed to do your best.
At Rp 100,000 per person per session, it is still affordable. The regular session accommodates up to eight participants, so you will get full attention. Reservation is recommended.