A Tale of Two Bootcamps



We are a house in recovery, I am recovering from my first sports injury, my husband is recovering from a gruelling week in the army and the children are re-adjusting to having daddy back home. I would say that I far prefer my bootcamp to hubby’s.

Mummy bootcamp.  So to the injury, not only is it my first injury it’s also from the first bit of sport I have done, in my life, ever.  Unless you count a small dalliance with popmobility (how 90s) at university, I have never been one for sports, exercise and perish the thought exercise classes.  PE lessons at school were dreaded and consisted of perishing on a Northern England all-weather pitch with a hockey stick – not sure why it was called all-weather because as I recall there was only one kind of weather; cold, rainy and sometimes snow.

Having struck 40 I thought it high time to bite the bullet and try to exercise my sagging limbs and even saggier stomach (carrying twins for 9 months has left me somewhat in credit on the stomach skin front).  So off I trotted (having toyed with the idea for 6 months) to bootcamp.  Twice a week. For an hour.  Every week.   To say I was petrified before lesson one is an understatement.  I did warn the instructor that I wasn’t concerned about being slow, I was more worried that they may have to take me home by ambulance.  Luckily 2 months in I have survived, so far, and dare I say I enjoy it.  Shock horror.  Have I missed a trick for the last 20 years?  Could I be an athlete disguised for the last 20 years as a lay-about?  Probably not, but I am not as crap at it as I had imagined and yes I really do actually like it.

Due to my inexperience in the world of exercise I quickly sustained my first injury due to my trainers, ill-suited to the rigours of bootcamp.  It came as quite a revelation to uninitiated me that there were different shoes for different types of running…hmmm.  Equipped with a new pair bought at great expense to the management from a store that filmed the backs of my feet running on a treadmill – yes really – I am quickly recovering and awaiting the arrival of muscles.

Daddy bootcamp.  Now this is the real deal.  Every year for a few days , weeks and sometimes a month the young men of Israel are summoned back to the army to train and serve as reservists.  I say young but it rather depends on what you call young, for some this holiday/ordeal/bootcamp goes on til age 45 and for some, beyond.  In my husband’s case it’s until age 45.  This past week his unit has been walking up and down hills carrying 40 kilos in the boiling heat, hiding in bushes, orienteering and generally practising for something  I would rather not think about.  Like his dearly beloved (that’s me), hubby is no sportsman.  He likes sport, if he can watch it on the TV and when I say sport I am talking every sport from rugby to basketball, darts and snooker to bull riding (yes really), but like yours truly he doesn’t take part, not recently anyway.  I should add (to keep him sweet) that he does work 6 days a week and is on his feet for 99% of the time so the opportunity (time) to play is limited.  Take this into account and you can see that army training for him is all the more gruelling.  No sleep for 3 days and hiking through the mountains must certainly put his non too active body through its paces.  He is not alone of course, most men in combat units do it to keep them battle-ready.  Sad really that it is necessary.

Now he is home and the kids and I are getting used to him being back.  He is full of thorns and blisters but seems chirpy enough, I do believe he quite enjoys it .  No doubt like me he is happy that he completes it without too much ill effect, possibly he is as surprised by his physical prowess as I am by my own (prowess is perhaps pushing it).  His next bootcamp is a few months off, mine continues as I endeavour to train my  lazy limbs.  Can’t wait to see what I’ll look like when, for the first time since I was around 15, I can say I am 100% physically fit.  Here’s hoping.


If you are based in or around Tel Aviv and fancy a go at bootcamp visit http://bootcampisrael.com/


6 responses »

  1. I did yoga last week. I was supposed to do it again this week, but when I realized that it was Bikram Yoga (90 degree heat) and also POWER yoga at an advanced level (this is like yoga-robics, I think) I wimped out. It was hot and fast. My abs felt great the next few days though. Why does it all have to be such hard work?

    • The words power and advanced are ones I cannot put with exercise and I have long thought the word yoga was an expletive. Slowly slowly I am coming around, although Bikram will be waiting a while for me. GOOD FOR YOU! Our days of pints of guinness and everything fried in a bowl are long gone, mores the pity.

  2. WOW!! How can you write an amazing article like this and not send it to your boot camp instructor:)) I love having you in class Katie, and yes, you are definitely on the road to being “100% fit”. So keep enjoying it (please:). xxx

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