I met Holly on the first day of our sons going to Junior Kindergarten. Our perfectly prepared kids shattered my momstagram intentions and immediately set about trying to destroy each other. Holly was super calm about it and smiled at me comfortingly and said ‘just ignore it. They’ll let us know if there’s blood’.

She was like a Zen Master to me.

And then I noticed that she always showed up at Drop Off wearing sneakers and looking kind of sporty. I asked her about it… and she was quick to assure me that she just likes to walk. Period.

I invited her to Bootcamp and she laughed in my face.

Here’s what’s happened since then. This is Holly’s Fitness Story.






Stay-at-home parent


How long have you been training with us?

Since May, 2016, moving into 4 months now

Were you always an exerciser? What did you do for your fitness before signing up with FFG?

I was a walker.  Fortunately not a White Walker –

white walkers

but rather that person you see puffing around the streets for an hour, clearly thinking she is doing something but in fact, only walking.

As for more structured forms of excercise, there is a treadmill at home that serves as a wonderful jungle gym for my child


and for a year I practiced yoga… the when – as well as the flexibility – have escaped me.

What made you sign up for the FFG Bootcamp and the 28 Day Transformation?

Trainer pressure: Luck on my side, my child happens to attend the same school as Oonagh’s; after two years of her encouragingly bellowing from her car window for me to join Bootcamp, I acquiesced.

Me at drop off. Every. Day.

Oonagh at drop off. Every. Day.

My commitment to better health truly began once I acknowledged my resistance to join.

With an irrational unease of trying new things, compounded by a fear of change, I had to step out beyond my personal comfort zone to finally register for the Challenge.

The 28 Day Transformation offered an on-line support system with guided meal plans and exercise regimes that rang true.  Once graduated, I assessed how far I had come in one month and committed myself to better health by joining Bootcamp in May.

I went from a “I don’t do excercise classes” to a Bootcamp freak.

How have the programs changed your life?

I cannot stress enough how much both programs have altered not only my physical but my mental state.

Being fit truly does make you feel good. Thanks to the Challenge I broke up with sugar, banned white flour from the house and happily put my Kitchen Aid into a cupboard .

(My Kitchen Aid recently apologized for sulking once I learnt how to bake with healthier flour options).

Joint pain and a general malaise have disappeared.

The best is my outlook to life. I am better able to handle stress, more accepting to the realities of situations, and no longer falling on food to get me through, but my state of mind.


What do you do when you are not Bootcamping?

Beyond ‘getting huge’, I am an avid reader of science fiction with the humble goal of taking over the world one SF book review at a time through my blog, Thank the Maker, girlsguidetoscifi.blogger.ca.


This Fall I plan to re-enter the workforce as a content writer, moving firmly away from my ESL days of teaching. I also have a son and husband who both manage to keep me away from my books far too much.

What’s your major fitness goal right now?

To jog 30 minutes self-motivated without taking a significant break and/or being chased by vampires.


What about coming to Bootcamp makes you jump out of bed at 5am singing the Hills are Alive with the Sound of Music? Or what did you love about the 28 Day Transformation?

Nothing can get me to jump out of bed at 5am singing anything, not even Duran Duran.


…Thus my commitment to the “Not So Early Risers” Bootcamp.

What I absolutely loved about the 28 Day Challenge is that it woke me up, ground me to the present moment, allowing me to focus and become the person I always knew I was.

The Challenge became less a weight-loss means and more a transformative process. The program provides all the avenues to success: on-line support, grocery lists, recipes, at home excercise programs, informative, motivating staff.

I finally had the tools needed to make healthy choices.


The 28 Day Challenge

What exercise or drill makes you cower under your bed covers and pretend you don’t hear your alarm? Or what was the worst moment of the Transformation for you?

Planks used to be the devil, but I have overcome that beast and have only the dreaded burpee to slay.

Let me just say at no time does anyone really need to do a burpee and I cannot for the life of me figure out why Oonagh Duncan continues to make me do them.

As for the 28 Day Challenge, it was week 3, realizing that I wasn’t losing the weight I had anticipated I would, comparing my gains to others and fraught with anxiety.


Once I stopped comparing, communicated my fears with my on-line group of Challenge members, I was able to redefine my personal goals, move forward and continue to adapt my relationship with food.

Best/funniest bootcamp/Transformation moment?

Bootcamp: Feeling the need to roar like Hulk, and then ROAR. I am quite the bad-ass.


Transformation: Subsequently moving from the 28 Day Challenge to the Alumni program realizing that my month long Challenge had a become a lifestyle.

What advice would you give someone who is just starting out with us or just thinking about it?

Don’t hesitate.

I am the queen of hesitation; having spent 2 years fretting about joining Bootcamp; thinking:

I wasn’t in shape enough
Not owning excercise clothes
Unable to jog

…all that crap bouncing in my head.

Guess what?
No one can suddenly jog.  You have to train.
Exercise clothes are clothes you sweat in – who cares what they look like?

Holly is now able to run but hasn't managed the gym clothes yet...

Holly is now able to run but hasn’t managed the gym clothes yet…

You join to get in shape not because you already are.

As for the 28-Day Transformation, my entire life has changed.

Being 20 pounds lighter, with a body that weekly becomes stronger and a new mental relationship with food, I am Holly 2.0.

When you are feeling tired, anxious, stressed, achy..the 28 Day Challenge will sort you out. It is remarkable how a proper diet with proportioned meals with a regular fitness regime can and will change your life.

What is the accomplishment or personal milestone you are most proud of?

Graduating from the 28-Day Transformation and then committing myself to the Lifetime Challenge is my most accomplished moment. The mental shift from completing the Challenge to making it a lifestyle took weeks of self-negotiating.

Finally admitting that I could be fit, and that wanting to be a healthy, sexy 45 year old by November was plausible.

My greatest accomplishment is believing in myself.


I love Holly’s final words – and it’s been so much fun watching her become such a jock! If any of Holly’s story resonated with you, leave her a comment below!