What Fitness Ridge did for Me


It has been one and a half months since coming home from one month at The Biggest Loser Resort at Fitness Ridge. A month of working out was substantial. Working out 5 and a half days a week, six to eight hours a day was substantial. I want ruminate and elucidate  how this experience has changed me, my daily life, my thought life.

I have been attending and participating in a cycling class. I had read that one could burn 500 calories in cycling class. I am close- I burn around 400, but when the instructor says turn it up a notch and go faster, I turn it up half a notch and go as fast as I can, which isn’t a 500 calorie push. That 500 calorie burn is something to aspire to. I know that after class I am shaking because I push hard. Either before or after classes I lift weights. Which schedule is best is debated. I try to lift after  cardio when I can just because the big, beautiful trainer who tried to sell me his services told me to during our free consultation. Either, or, I spend about 2 hours in the gym four to six days a week.

Two hours.

I recently read in SEVERAL magazines and on AOL, that one hour a day is enough. Trend. It is a trend. Not too long ago I read in the same publications that and hour and a half was the minimum. What to believe? I recently worked out 6 to 8 hours a day and lived to tell. This lifestyle changed my appearance, my health, and my mind. Several Fitness Ridge alumni, okay a lot of Fitness Ridge alumni, go on to participate in races, triathlons and marathons. Training for those events takes a lot of  time and dedication. Apparently, for many Fitness Ridgers, this working out thing…sticks. For me, it has become a part of me as well. Two hours compared to eight is nothing! Some days I spend three hours there because I go to the classes available. My favorite so far is Latin Heat, a spin off of Zumba I am guessing. It was so much fun and I burned 450 calories! I miss John’s Cardio Disco Jam, but Latin Heat is a great replacement. And that folks is the key: to take what I experienced at the Ridge and create it here at my gym.

I tread on Thursdays. Even though I am “alone” at my gym, I hear Sharon et al yelling at me, telling me I can do anything for 60 seconds! Even though I am “alone” I am with others all over the country, Canada and soon Australia. who are doing the same workout, hearing the same inner voices! I am good with that.  An i-pod or pad conference would be a great futuristic tool to place on our treadmills…maybe we can link up through cyber space! For now, my own head is party enough!  The one HUGE thing that I know has changed with me is that I am now equipped and able to work out harder than ever before. I paid for four weeks at Fitness Ridge, and in return I have been able to integrate and carry with me most everything I learned. I bought a great product. It was the best money I ever spent…excluding of course any money spent on growing my kids…I mean on ME personally. I count it as a part of my education.

The main ingredient to this whole experience is that I learned I can have a fit, muscular body and live a fit muscular lifestyle. I CAN! I CAN! I CAN! Walking feels different now. There is strength in my gait.

I admit this feeling, this body is closer to what I have dreamed of my entire life- or at least from about age 15 on! Why did it take me so long to to put into practice all of the stuff the fit lifestyle is made of? Maybe because I never felt worthy of it. Yeah, self-esteem can erode like rust on iron…grwoing deeper and darker with time. Thank God I found the inner okay to go get polished up! I learned that fitness SHOULD be scheduled into my day like I schedule everything else. I learned I am worth the effort, and with that effort comes better health and much more promising future. If you are sitting on your couch feeling the burn of your muscles dying, jump up and go for a walk NOW! That was my wake-up call and first step before calling the resort.

Since I left The Ridge I find I miss the darned place. I never went to summer camp, but I am going to take a wild guess that maybe I had a really groovy camp experience! I learned new things and made new friends. Which brings me to the alumni of The Ridge. A lot of people go back for seconds, thirds, fourths. Why? It is a place where we can dig deep within and find strength both physically and mentally to complete each day. I wonder if this experience compares just an iota to what the Marines feel…you know, like if there was a wheel o’ experience and the Ridge and Marines are in the same sector. The few, the proud, the Fitness Ridgers!

Please do not get offended if you are a marine or know and love someone who is. I just notice this brotherhood of people who have gone through the fire of training and come out on the other side ready- proud of themselves and their mission. Of course their mission is highly important…a daughter and ex-wife of soldiers, I know. So go the next step with me here…

Those of us who share in our individual journeys at The Ridge form a bit of a brotherhood/sisterhood. 

I already signed up for two weeks next summer. A lot of us are booking the same week as we all enjoyed each other a lot. I get it that we sound a bit fanatical, but don’t knock this unless you experienced it…if you experienced it and cannot relate to what I am writing about AT ALL…well, I wonder how deep you went into yourself to really find that polished iron- the strength to be all you know you can be. That is the jewel in this program- period.

Play big alumni, as playing small never suited any of us! Got to love those trainerisms!!!

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5 thoughts on “What Fitness Ridge did for Me

  1. I’m glad that everything is going so well for you! How have you found your diet since you’ve been home? That has continued to be a struggle for me while the working out has stuck really well.

    You will find tons of literature on doing cardio vs. weights first and they all claim they are best way to go. I, personally, do my weights first and then cardio. The literature that I DO take a lot of stock in is that 30 minutes of intervals is much more effective than say an hour of steady work. So I only ever do 30 min. and always always intervals (to include treading once/week!).

    It’s also said that trying to do a little cardio first thing in the morning on an empty stomach is highly effective as during sleep you’ve depleted your storage of carbs and if you do the cardio with this depletion, your body will turn to fat stores to burn for energy. Who knows…but it sounds good to me and so I do try and get a jog in when I can in the morning.

    I’m very proud of you and I wish I could meet up with everyone next summer…we’ll see 🙂

    • Tracy! The diet is day to day. I found that planning is the key…that eating something just to eat it is okay…that everyday I do well is a victory and those that I don’t .. well, I try to not have an anxiety attact! As long as a bad day is followed by good DAYS….the anxiety goes away. I just want the cellulite to die a fast, painless death!

  2. Kim:

    Although you may not think it’s much – I have started what I call “my age” work out. I started with 12 mins. of cardio on my treadmill on “Aerobic” or “Weight Loss”. Geez – the few times the incline hits 8 is tough! I’m now up to 20 mins. Yea! I also do minimal weights, stretches & am almost up to a real sit up! LOL! Thanks for the motivation. I thought my work out days were over but it sure helps deal with stress. Of course, I still drink my wine for that. Ha!
    Love you!

  3. Kim,
    Thank You!
    Today, only one day after I accomplished something, though to some may seem trivial, but to me a Huge accomplishment, Completing my first ever 5K run. My goal was first to just finish, then as I focused on the day approaching, I set a self-goal to finish in under 40 minutes.
    During our time at Fitness Ridge we were able to share each others stories and Life Challenges. Those days at FR gave New Life to my Inner Self and I Truly Believe that You Can Do Anything You put your mind, body and soul into.
    As the day approached everyday Life and work and every other thing imaginable could have made the old me say….maybe I’ll do the next one. I needed to Focus…and here was my day before.
    After driving 9 1/2 hours the day before the 5K then setting up an event, performing my show, tearing down my equiptment then driving home. I slept for 5 hours, got up, dressed in my FR Red Hiking Shorts, my Shut Up and Sweat shirt and Green Nikes and off to the 5K.
    883 runners/walkers and me…the Gun sounded and I was off to my first 5K. All I could think about was how I got here to begin with and how I Thank God for Fitness Ridge, the Trainers the Red Mountains, the structure and most of all the FR Alumni like yourself that have played a part in My Life Journey.
    The Finish Line in sight, all I could think about was… it is not how you start but how you Finish…I sprinted to the Finish Line with the local High School Cheerleaders and other runners families lining the last 50 yds and crossed the Finish Line in 33:18.
    That was yesterday, and today to read your account of FR and what it has done for you…I agree 110%. As I read your Blog it made me very emotional and Yes here I sit typing after wiping away Tears!
    Thank You and I can’t wait till 2011 Reunion!

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