What is it? Reboot Bootcamp
Where is it? Dorset
You would be hard pushed to find anyone more fit than those in the armed forces, so as a former member of the Parachute Regiment, Mark Hook’s military pedigree provides some reassurance as to the no-nonsense professionalism that you will find at his Reboot bootcamp in Dorset. But make no mistake, this is not an environment for penal hardship; this is a place where diets don’t exist and a happy, healthy lifestyle prevails.
Mark is adamant about one thing in particular – Reboot is not a quick fix, the goal is long term health so your journey with him isn’t just about the five day residence in Dorset – it starts the moment your sign up with a pre-trip training programme (which many guests say they would have been happy to pay the full fee for in itself, such is its effectiveness) and after the bootcamp you continue to receive weekly programmes for three months.
The first thing you notice about Reboot is the location – not only the rolling countryside, impossibly perfect village of Symondsbury and the proximity to the sea, but more prominently the two manor houses that guests stay in which wreak more of luxury than a hard core, exercise imbued boot camp.
There are three components that make this a holistic fitness camp in the true sense of the word – exercise, diet, and mind training. Over a five day course guests experience thirty different training sessions, so suffice to say it is no soft option, and adhering to that long term policy, guests are encouraged to think about how to continue doing similar routines at home – envisaging running routes, weight training, and hill climbing. The support you receive here is one of its primary benefits, and it comes in multiple forms: staff are unequivocally encouraging, but your contemporaries – who form a spectrum of fitness levels from those training for Ironman challenges, to those simply wanting to lose weight – fast become comrades in the quest for fitness. Of great importance however, is Mind Coach Vanessa Price who focuses on the oft neglected psychological aspect of looking after yourself.
Not satisfied with telling you what’s low calorie and what’s not, Nutritionist Naomi Devlin comes to the retreat three times during the week (although she is also available for one-on-one sessions) and taking you back to the classroom goes against the obvious grain, teaching about good fats and discouraging calorie counting. The emphasis is on health, not diets – weight loss comes but not by focusing on it (an utterly miserable past-time as most people will know) but by focusing on a goal – maybe it’s being able to do one sit up at the end of the month or maybe it’s to complete a half marathon by the end of the year. In keeping with their ‘on-going’ policy, you leave Reboot with a host of recipes, and in case shopping proves too much of a temptation, many people do an online shop before they leave.
Ultimately, the best way to gauge the success of a place like Reboot is to go on reputation: talking to former clients, testimonials arelittered not only with success stories but people who frequently return simply to enjoy the week, and perhaps more importantly people who seem extremely happy. The ethos may be one of no excuses, but that is not to the detriment of having fun, in fact it’s the complete opposite – the goal is not to divide between sinners and saints or to tell you all the things you shouldn’t do, as Mark says: “it’s ok to have a vice, but try to make it a little bit healthier. The biggest thing is not to beat yourself up – you have one life, enjoy it!”
– Even if you are in great shape already, Reboot is a great option to prepare for a particular event or simply a holiday with a difference, so don’t be put off by the idea that it’s a camp for weight loss.
– Don’t be afraid to go on your own – the atmosphere is one of warmth and welcome and there is no doubt you will make like-minded friends.
– Do take notice of the training programme that is sent to you before you go to the bootcamp – it is tailored specifically to you, and is a key part of achieving your goals – trust us, these people know what they’re talking about!
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