Caroline Horgan

My first insight into the world of Regiment Fitness was during last April's W.A.R.

I convinced a few netball buddies to sign up for the 5km team race and despite our initial shock at having to carry a log (a vital detail we'd missed in the small print) we had so much fun working together and getting each other up, over, through and around the obstacles.

We loved the event, the challenges and the atmosphere. I had never done anything like W.A.R. and despite the serious bruising, aches and pains I knew I had to sign up to Regiment Fitness. I did so a few days later.

Regiment Fitness had me hooked at my first session - a glorious sunny evening on the Dunstable Downs with Tom, Liam and a welcoming bunch of reg fitters. The first session was gruelling, don't get me wrong, especially as I found myself face to face with more demonic logs. However the variety to the exercises & circuits really impressed me. Relying on only a few pieces of basic equipment the instructors were able to offer a complete top to toe workout which catered for everyone regardless of age, size and athletic ability. Furthermore I really appreciated the endless encouragement from all sides and great banter. Who would have thought boot camp permitted laughter?! I was sold.

I ploughed headlong into classes and set myself a challenge to attend 4-5 sessions a week. I knew straight away that if I put the time in it would greatly benefit my netball game as well as overall health & fitness. With a great deal of encouragement from the instructors I forced myself to start 'taking it on' after a few weeks. This was a huge hurdle... but I did it and with it came an immense sense of achievement.

Curious as to how I could take my fitness to the next level I decided recently to sign up for PT. I now meet with Graham once a week and set regular fitness tests. He carries these out in a variety of ways so that sessions are never repetitive but always with clear end goals. PT with Graham means we never stay in the same spot for too long which I love! I've been tabbing all over the Dunstable Downs, tested on the Aston Clinton Fitness Trail and recently had to carry a 28kg rucksack tabbing around a quarry.

PT allows me the time to focus and improve upon weaker areas of my fitness, both the physical & mental ones. I really enjoy receiving advice on how to better technique which often results in a form of 'homework' to practice during regular sessions and in my own time. Frequent testing is the ideal motivational tool for me as I struggle with a defeatist attitude from time to time. This way I can remain focused on set targets, know what I need to do to reach them and in turn able to gage improvements to my general fitness.

Since joining Regiment Fitness 7 months ago I have lost a stone and dropped 2 dress sizes. I feel so much fitter, so much more agile and my stamina on court has improved immensely.

Regiment Fitness sessions are not just about a good workout though. The social element has a huge appeal. They are a great way to meet people and form new friendships. Turning up to your regular R.F session can be likened to walking into the bar in Cheers... only on this occasion it's a park 'where everybody knows your name'. The instructors are a fab bunch and do such a good job at making everyone feel welcome. They have a great knack for kicking us into gear whilst at the same time ensuring there is always fun to be had. Thanks so much for all your hard work and endless encouragement guys!

So 7 months on and despite the progressively colder, wetter, muddier conditions, I can still safely and proudly say "Hi, my name is Caroline and I am addicted to Regiment Fitness".

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