THE BOOTCAMP CHALLENGE
06 September 2015
THE OTHER SIDE OF IBIZA
Bootcamp Diary, Top Hill Retreats, September 2015
Hard to imagine anyone would go to Ibiza on a one week vacation to be sober and work out 8 hours a day. Well, theres definitely more to Ibiza than meets a raving eye. My latest bloggin adventure took me straight to the north of this beautiful island, so famous for its good energy, to TOP HILL Resorts, an exclusive luxury estate which offers ibicencan Bootcamp & Yoga Retreats.
Geared up with a pile of sneakers, a suitcase full of gym clothes, a jawbone UP movement & sleep tracker - as well as a little bit of apprehension I had made my way to the island.
Picked up at the airport along with two fellow 'bootcampers' also from Switzerland. I had been curious as to who else would be attending such a camp. I was positively surprised to see two young girls, younger than me, ready to take on a 'suffering' tour rather than utilizing their Ibiza Vacation to hang around at beachclubs and parties. The two girls came straight from Switzerland to the bootcamp, and would return to Switzerland straight after. This was their vacation! I was impressed.
After a half hour drive to the very north of Ibiza we entered the remote hillside Estate. Stepping out of the car we heard some nearby voices coming from a nearby arbour. A blonde woman and a blonde guy where sitting on top of the arbour collecting grapes 'we are collecting grapes to make wine, we need some clean feet for wine stamping' the woman called to us. As we approached she offered some fresh picked grapes from the bowl. This was our welcome. The woman was Nicole who was going to be our bootcamp trainer, and Johannes was her co-trainer. They where the ones to motivate us through our sufferance the next coming week. Nicole was like a full powerball of energy: extremely toned, extremely flexible, with that smile across her face - simply radiating those fit vibes. Johannes was tall, lean & calm. Both of them had years of extensive experience as fitness instructors, with Jonathan also majoring as nutritionist. They complemented each other well.
We where shown to our rooms which were modern, comfortable and built to highest standard with a grey stoned large bathroom & glass stand-in shower, large comfortable bed & direct access to the terrasse through huge glass panelled sliding doors through which I had an infinity view overlooking the lavish estate & ibicencan hillside landscape.
On the first Evening we got together as a whole group to get to know each other and to go through the program of the following week. The group consisted of 14 young & athletic people, all of them swiss, ready to push their limits. Amongst the participants were cross fitters, ex professional soccer players, fitness instructors and sport addicts. 'I like the feeling when sport makes you suffer' was one of the answers I heard when asking everyone for their motivation to attend. I was by far the most unathletic person taking part. I was the weakest link, and this week was really going to be a FIT CHALLENGE!
THE BOOTCAMP DIARY:
6.30am Wake Up time
7am first warm up exercises. No Breakfast.
First thing we did was to have our bodies & fitness evaluated by Johannes.
My Fit Facts:
My Starting Data:
Height: 180cm Body Fat: 14% Viszeralfett 1kg Bones 2.4kg
Muscle Mass: 45kg Biological Age: 12 BMI 17.3 Water 61.8%
Weight 56.1kg Basal Metabolic Rate per day: 1463 kcal
***Disclaimer: of course this Data is based on approximation and not 100% accurate***
This procedure was going to be repeated at the end of the Week to compare & measure the changes and improvements. Jonathan informed me that the minimum Body Fat Value for Females was 12%. So I will aim at building muscle & aiming towards that 12% during the week that I was here.
8am Breakfast: After an hour of warm-up exercises and fitness checks we got a breakfast consisting of a green juice as well as cold cut salmon and some fruits. The programm continued with us moving to a nearby beach for some more exercising such as running stairs, doing basic outdoor workouts by the beach and in water. At 10am, we got to chew on a sweet cocoa-date-ball about the size of a very small plum - before continuing on another hour of beachside exercises.
12.00 Lunch: Cole-carrot-raisin salad, lentil porridge and steamed soaked millet.
I was super impressed with the food. There are two private chefs present on the estate - preparing wholefood, super healthy & nutritious meals, as well as perhaps making sure nobody sneak eats out of the kitchen. With most people desiring to reduce their body fat, controlling portions are a must. Drinking plenty of water 3-4 litres is also a must.
13.00 - 17.45 Afternoon Exercises: The afternoon moved through with equal intensity. Starting with a boxing class, followed by a circuit training including 100 sit ups, 100 press ups and 100 lunges, TRX training, Pilates class and finished by a relaxation & stretching yoga class (which was pure heaven).
18:00 Dinner: a super healthy lowfat lasagna with spinach topped with sweet jalapenos, green salad, and baby corn omelettes with hummus. Dessert was a raw lime coconut & macadamia ball which had me asking exitedly for the recipe & I hope I'll be able to get it share it with you soon.
After dinner I had a 1 hour sports massage & foot accupressure, and by that time I was more than ready to collapse into my sleep. 21.30 - BEDTIME.
7am meeting in front of the house for 10 minutes of warm up & stretching exercise - then its a morning run up & down the hills surrounding the estate with intervalls of short set of exercises. Stomach’s are growling and I am tagging behind in the back with Nicole and my nordic walking sticks. Due to low blood pressure I never do jogging - so I power walk instead - which does not fail to exhaust me in these early morning hours & on an empty stomach. Seeing the hillside landscapes & watching the sun rise as we are walking is incredibly beautiful though & I am amazed at how awake I feel by the end of it.
Ready for Breakfast 8am. I am dying hungry. At breakfast we get a delicious buffet of prociutto crudo, homemade granola, yoghurt, bread, cheese and fruits. 9AM the daily programm kicks off - hiking, pilates, yoga, circuit training. I skip the hike in favour of writing, but take part in everything else. Lunch is a portion of buckwheat along with a warm mash of soaked nuts and green beans.
In the evening of DAY 2, after a large plate of chicken, veggies & salad for dinner, I am exhausted but restless at the same time - finding it hard to go to sleep.
Despite only having had 7 hours of sleep I am awake early and feeling pretty fit. Except for soaring muscle aches, my mind is awake. Its off to the morning walk followed by breakfast, followed by a trip to the beach for a session of morning beachside workouts which are interrupted by a ibicencan heavy rain shower. I wait it out in a nearby beach club with a coffee - HEAVEN!
Above: Beachside View before the Rain drew up - by Iphone
After Lunch we have a two consecutive hour sessions of power yoga & pilates - then moving straight on to an hour of boxing by the pool (sun is up again), finishing off with TRX. I really enjoy all of these classes - TRX & Pilates are great for letting those deep muscles burn. Boxing is amazing for releasing emotional tension & letting go of bad energy, and Yoga is just fabulous for deep stretching. I often feel slightly dizzy when doing the yoga stretches because I push myself & breathe into the stretch. But everyone can decide themselves how far they want to go with the stretches - Yoga is very individual and intuitive - which I love!
In the Evening of DAY 3 my tiredness catches up with me and I pretty much RUN to my bed straight away swallowing the last bite of my raw avocado lime dessert square. The dinner today was the best so far, seafood plate (crablegs, clams) & a salad. During the night I woke up hungry, almost ready to scavenge to the kitchen in my pijamas looking for food. But I resisted and managed to go back to sleep, promising myself a double portion of breakfast in the morning.
Above: Doing TRX under instruction of Personal Trainer Johannes - photo credit www.veraley.com
My tiredness crisis continued & I found it hard to wake up. Still hungry, the thought of facing another hour walk before I would get any breakfast was not motivating. But the sunrise was so beautiful - I was extremely happy and energetic by the end of the walk. Perhaps also because I knew that I got to eat now - double portion including a bit of the porridge. I realized I needed more carbs. The carbs I got from vegetables & nuts, which usually sustains me during my normal lifestyle, were not sufficient for this weeks high level of activity. I needed to eat more powerfood to be able to max out my physical potential. I started eating buckwheat, lentils and porridge in the morning to increase my endurance during the training sessions.
Above: boiled soaked Buckwheat along with a bean & nut salad
That night, was our midweek wednesdays night off and we headed to the South of Ibiza to watch the Sunset at the Experimental Beach Club. It was the first time for everyone to get a 'normal' non macrobiotic activated superfood meal since arriving at camp. I chose grilled vegetables and chicken - I was not event tempted by anything else.
DAY 5 flew by in a hurry with the same schedule as the other days. We exercised from 7am to 5pm (boxing, TRX, Beach, Yoga, Pilates) and then we got a small cooking tutorial by the Retreat Chef's which I had been looking forward to all week. Because THE FOOD which we ate during the Bootcamp was not only ultra healthy, our mealplan was also carefully structured to fit our dietary requirements. It was mostly Vegan/Vegetarian with a small portion of healthy lean meats included. The Carbs derived from whole grains, millet, buckwheat and lentils - no refined carbs. The meals where prepared using little oil/butter but containing a lot of naturally fatty seeds & nuts. It was the perfect diet, just like I aim to consume at home - the only difference was that here it was prepared for me - which was absolutely AMAZING of course! I also learned & discovered a lot of new ways to prepare foods, for example soaking the millet, or soaking and boiling whole grain of buckwheat. I found countless recipe inspirations to try at home, and can't wait to share them with you. Here is some of the type of Food/Portion we ate during the Week:
I will try out some recipes I learned when I get home & share them in a separate Blogpost soon!
The morning of the last day has arrived and we are back to the measuring board at 7am to view our Results. Johannes evaluates each us individually and takes down all our Values just like he did on DAY 1.
So what happened to my body during this week?
Well my Values stayed pretty much the same - I'm highlighting the Values that have changed:
My Finishing Data:
Height: 180cm Body Fat: 12.5% (-1.5%) Viszeralfett 1kg Bones 2.4kg
Muscle Mass: 45kg Biological Age: 12 BMI 17.3 Water 61.8% (-5%)
Weight 57.1kg Basal Metabolic Rate per day: 1463 kcal (-10%)
I did manage to reduce my Body fat by 1.5% without loosing muscle. The fact that I lost water is my own fault, it just goes to show that drinking ENOUGH is very important especially when working out. Its the loss of water which caused my Metabolic Rate to go down. WATER is very important for the body! Lack of water causes the muscles to struggle, to be more tense & slows down the metabolism. The reason why I probably did not gain any muscle is because during workout the muscles get broken down to some point, and it takes a while for them to rebuild stronger (that is why we have the soreness).
I will go back in one week to my Gym for another evaluation done to check the final result.