Over the last two weeks, I’ve made a few lifestyle changes that have had quite an impact on myself, and surprisingly those around me. I decided to embark on a two week boot camp where I dedicated an hour and a half each morning to high intensity workouts. Initially, I signed up for the boot camp solely for the purpose of toning up and getting myself back in a routine. However, I gained so much more from this bootcamp than a toner body. I came up with a list of the most important things I learned/gained from this two week experience, and hopefully others will find this information equally beneficial.

1) Waking up at the ass-crack of dawn isn’t actually THAT bad! Historically I have never been a morning person and definitely not someone who enjoyed morning workouts. I learned something from this bootcamp, though. I’m not the same person I used to be. The girl who used to love afternoon workouts was also the girl who had a 5 minute commute home, never had to work late, lived in a mild climate, and had a support group of friends who worked out together everyday. My life has now become the complete opposite of that, and it took me almost two years to realize it.

2) Bio-Individuality. Put in the plainest terms possible, it’s about eating foods (generally clean/non-processed foods) that make your body feel its best. We were given a food log to track our food intake during the boot camp, and next to the food was a column that said “Mood After.” I did a horrible job of actually writing down my food intake, but I did make a conscious effort to think how every food I ate made me feel afterwards. I realized that some foods do make me feel better than others. When I was eating cleaner foods, I had more energy and felt significantly better than when I would eat processed or heavier foods. I definitely haven’t followed the bio-individuality lifestyle to a T, but I have decreased the amount of fried/processed foods I’m ingesting…and it has honestly made all the difference.

3) Switching up your workouts and keeping it high intensity is the fastest way you will see physical results. I’ve known this ever since I started Insanity two years ago, but STRIPPED was a reminder that keeping your muscles confused and guessing is an amazing, quick way to transform your body. Over the past 11 days, I’ve done kettlebell workouts, TRX suspension training, kickboxing with arm and ankle weights, cardio sequences and intervals, and toning exercises. I’m already starting to see a difference in my body, and my physical stamina and energy is so much higher than it used to be.

4) Your positive attitude and healthy lifestyle will rub off on others! When I started this bootcamp, one of my fears was that all of my friends would be going out and having fun without me…and literally, the exact opposite happened. We cook healthy group dinners now and stay in more as opposed to going out and spending money at bars. Also, a few of my friends have jumped on the workout bandwagon and are starting to develop new workout routines. I really can’t stress enough how important and awesome it is to have a great group of friends who are there to support you and challenge themselves as well.

It’s so amazing how making time for yourself and changing one aspect of your life can affect so many other things. I committed to STRIPPED 4.0 starting in mid-February and I’m hoping that the changes I’ve made over the past two weeks will extend through the next bootcamp-we’ll see how it goes!