Yes, this is a huge endorsement for Farrell's. You may consider this an infomercial for which I am not being compensated. ;-)
I started Farrell's ten weeks ago, and I was scared to death. I am not one who exercises. Farrell's is billed as a body transformation program, and that's exactly what it is. It consists of ten weeks of workouts every day except Sunday, and a nutrition plan that you really must follow if you want results. So why did I do this? Why didn't I pick something easier? Do you know how many people asked me that? And the answer is because I don't aim low.
That being said, I thought that the Farrell's workouts would kill me. Or at the very least, make me throw up or pass out. Well, they didn't kill me, although I came very close to throwing up on occasion, and I know people who actually did.
Not until I showed up to orientation did I realize what a commitment this was going to be. At Farrell's, the minute you miss a class, people are on to you. You get texts and emails and accusatory facebook messages. They put you into teams depending on which class time you attend, so we had a team of four. The minute I decided to do some resistance training classes at 4:45 pm instead of 5:30 am, everyone noticed.
I understand that some people don't want to be told what to do. If you don't like accountability, Farrell's is not for you. But I love accountability. I thrive on it. So the very thought of having to explain myself is what got me out of bed at 4:50 am on many mornings. Out of 60 classes, I attended 56. On the last day, I overslept and woke up at 5:16 am for my 5:30 class. I could have stayed in bed or gone to a different class, but I really wanted to do the last one with my team. So I went late, but I went.
During these classes, I mostly wanted to kill the instructors with my bare hands. I said unthinkable words in my head (and maybe out loud) many many times while I was laying on the floor, unable to do another shin kick if my life depended on it. And let me tell you, I was splayed out on the floor a lot. At first, my coach and teammates would ask me if I was okay or needed help. Then they came to know that I just wanted to hang out on the floor in a fetal position at the end of class. That is how intense the kickboxing workouts are. You give everything you have for 45 minutes, and then you haul yourself out, thanking God that you didn't die or lose control of your bodily functions.
I know this sounds horrible. But it's great! No, really, it's the best thing I've ever done. Easy is easy. Pushing yourself to your limits is a whole 'nother ballgame. I've gone further in Farrell's classes than I've ever thought I could go. I've felt myself stretch to reach a goal and then reach it. Mostly because I had to, since the instructors walk around and yell in your face. Okay, they yell friendly, encouraging types of things most of the time. And you can't avoid those instructors. They pace around the room, looking for the weaklings. I can't tell you how many times one of them stood by my head while I was doing those awful rowboat exercises, because guess what? I can't do rowboats! They involve abs, of which I have none. Plus, you have to balance on your butt, of which I have a huge one, so it just rolls me over. Every single time.
So anyway, all of this is okay. And do you know why? Because it's for your own darn good, that's why. And no one really pays attention when I can't do certain ab exercises that involve pretending to row a boat, or God forbid, these terrible things called grasshoppers, where you jump up in the air and then jump down into a pushup and then jump back up. Do you know why no one cares? Because they've all been there. Every single person in that class, including the instructors, have done a first ten weeks. So they know. As a result, they are friendly and welcoming. Plus, the workouts are so hard that no one is paying attention to anyone else. Except when we all roll our eyes at each other because the instructors want us to burn out our round kicks on the bags for the third time in a row without a break.
All kidding aside, I love Farrell's. So much that I signed up for another three months. During my ten weeks, I learned that I really can do anything I set my mind to do, that excuses are just ways to get out of something you don't want to do, and that I really am what I eat. I ended up losing weight and inches (including five off my waist, ahem), becoming stronger, and increasing my flexibility. I also made friends who have been through the same hellish experience. My taekwondo kicks have gotten so much higher, and I can spar multiple people without getting tired.
What follows is one of the best things that's ever happened to me: During the final testing, one of the instructors, who shall remain nameless but whose name rhymes with Stacie, told me that she was going to run the last part of the mile with me so that she could push me. And she did. The first part of the mile, I walked, I ran, I chatted with some other people. And then I came around the corner and saw Stacie. Now people, I am not a runner in any sense of the word, and she has run the Lincoln half-marathon. So I got scared. I thought maybe I could escape, or maybe she would get distracted and not even notice me. But she did, and so we started running together. And then I got way winded and asked if we could walk. And she said we couldn't walk, but maybe we could slow down a little in preparation for our sprint at the end. Our what?! Yes, apparently, she had hatched this little plan where we would sprint as fast as we could to end the run. And so we kept running and maybe speeded up a tad at the end. I don't know because my world started to black out, and I felt like I was going to throw up. Then my teammates, who of course had finished in front of me, came over and started running with me too and shouting that I could do it. And there was my coach, in boat shoes for some reason, yelling my name and waving his arms, because seriously, who can run in those shoes? And then Tammie, the owner and meanest instructor, said my time as I finished. And it was three minutes less than the mile I ran ten weeks prior.
And that, my friends, is why I will stay at Farrell's.