After gaining and then losing seventy pounds during her first pregnancy, Kathy realized her strength in the fitness industry was in helping moms get back in shape.
“So many moms gain too much weight during their pregnancy and then figure that they will never lose it,” she empathizes. “I want to let them know that lots of women get in the best shape of their life after having a baby!"
One-hour long group classes are led by two instructors at a time, and involve various drills that encourage mothers of all fitness levels to tone their bodies with babies as young as six weeks in tow. Each workout involves cardio, strength training and core work. Kathy and her team provide all necessary equipment. Classes are offered six days a week, in the early and mid-morning hours. After paying an initial membership fee, the classes are sold in packages and can be used up to one year.
Kathy and her team keep the workouts fresh and innovative by sharing ideas and workout plans so that the instructors don’t repeat movements frequently. They utilize equipment such as bands, kettle balls, jump ropes, weights and medicine balls. She is also a proponent of updating and varying the music members exercise to.
Children of all ages are welcome and mothers are encouraged to feel comfortable in regards to incorporating their little ones into the routine. Sometimes moms push their children in strollers while running and doing jumping jacks; some watch toddlers play in a designated area while doing push-ups.
The concept’s popularity has allowed the company to expand to four locations, spanning the Dulles and Tysons areas as well as Chantilly. Mommy Bootcamp also offers several specialty classes as well as their signature Mommy Bootcamp.
Moms can attend “Mommy & Me Bootcamp” where new moms exercise with carefully structured movements while their babies are snugly secured in front carriers. Expecting moms can safely keep fit engaging in “Belly Bootcamp” Prenatal Fitness. In the summer, spring and fall, Mommy Bootcamp hosts an Outdoor Extreme bootcamp for women, which is an intense workout geared to get moms in top shape quickly. This is an early morning class taught without children present. On Saturdays, the INSANITY class provides an intense “level 2” conditioning class at the Dulles Town Center. What Kathy feels sets Mommy Bootcamp apart from some other workout regimens is the sense of community it encourages for mothers who feel they have an environment to connect with one another on parenting. Many members have been attending the classes for years and have watched their children bond and grow together. In addition to exercising, many run local races together and gather for monthly mothers’ nights out. Facebook and other message boards facilitate communication outside of class. “Now that my children are a little bit older, I feel like I’ve become a good resource for members,” says Kathy, who enjoys getting to know her clients well. “I can be a source of support both as a fitness instructor and as a parent.”
Kathy believes that a healthy mom equals a happy mom, which in turn equals a happy baby.
“Exercise was the only thing that made me feel better physically and mentally when I was first a new mom,” explains Kathy. “It boosted my self-esteem, and I want to encourage moms to do something that makes them feel good about themselves.”
In the early days of Mommy Bootcamp, Kathy was married and running the business in her spare time while parenting her small children. Now a single mother with kids in elementary school, she operates her career full-time while they are in classes so she can be present for them when they return home. “When I started Mommy Bootcamp, my daughter was five months old. She is now six years old and I still love teaching the classes and training the moms,” exclaims Kathy.
Mommy Bootcamp’s philosophy is “Mommy strong, all day long.” Participants need not bring anything other than water and a towel. Babies are optional, and dads are always welcome, especially when moms want to face off in a fitness challenge to see if fathers, too, can be “Mommy Strong.”