HILLINGDON women have taken working out to a different level in an exciting new fitness class, called Women’s Outdoor Fitness.
The session is run by personal trainers Dean Leow, 31, and Murrey Williamson, 26, in their spare time. They have 10 years of experience between them.
In 2012, a male-only version of the class was launched, and the women’s version has been set up in answer to demand.
Our newsdesk was told about the success of the class, so I went along to experience it for myself.
It is described as a boot camp-style group session and is held every Wednesday for £6 at the Hillingdon Sports and Leisure Complex.
Comparable classes in central London, such as Barry’s BootCamp, can cost upwards of £20.
That class, in particular, does, however, have the bonus that celebs, such as David Beckham, are known to attend.
As a regular gym user myself, I embraced the chance to try out something new, but I was not prepared for the challenge ahead of me.
I was thrown in at the deep end as the class started with laps of the athletic track, where the outside classes are held.
The main bulk of the session is then spent on interval training that works the whole of your body hard for every second you are there.
This included running while carrying tyres, hitting them with a sledge hammer (a real stress reliever!) and a particularly hard set of 100 squats.
I started feeling the pain in my muscles before I had even finished the session and this lasted for two days.
It is ‘weakness leaving the body’, as my partner always says whenever I moan that I am aching from exercise.
Well, a lot of weakness left me after the class, I can tell you.
The trainers have the respect of the class by joining in with the activities and motivating throughout.
Though it’s a challenge, taking part in this class is rewarding with noticeably-improved fitness in a short period of time.
“I am a woman who works out every day, and this is the only class I do that I actually feel afterwards,” said Nicola Benn, 29.
“It is the only class of its type in the West London area and it is nice to work outside as part of a friendly, supportive group.”
The results speak for themselves, with women losing impressive amounts of weight and taking part in endurance events, all spurred on from WOF.
“I can honestly say that WOF has completely changed my attitude towards fitness and exercise as a whole,” said Stephanie Hawkes, 32, a project manager from Hillingdon.
“I would never have imagined I would be someone who enjoyed going to the gym, let alone looking forward to a Wednesday night outdoors session.
“Having witnessed the dramatic fitness turnaround among some of the attendees, I decided to give WOF a go.
“I have since joined the gym and consider myself to be fitter and more toned than I have ever been. “ Stephanie went on to take part in Tough Mudder (a hardcore 10-12 mile obstacle race by British Special Forces) just a few months after her first WOF class.
Talking to other regular attendees, this is the only exercise some of them do, as it is such a challenge.
Trainer Dean said: “It is not for the faint-hearted, but a great class for women who want to train as hard as the men and get the results.”
It is run in all weathers, including the snow, adding another dimension to the class.
The warm weather alternative sounds more fun as they use the leisure complex’s shallow pool for endurance exercises. (Plus who wouldn’t want to see two fit guys running around in Lycra)!
The future of this class is bright, with trainers Dean and Murrey looking to expand, with the possibility of a mixed weekend class.
If I lived closer, I would definitely do it on a regular basis and I challenge any men or women who are seeking a new challenge to give it a go.
So, stock up on your protein shakes and expect muscle pain the next day!