Fitness boot camp uses nature to tone up clients

Owner of Sunrise Fitness Personal Training, Amy Young (center) encourages Katherine Riggs (left), of Naples, and Jennifer Hall-Lewis, of Casco, during a boot camp fitness session on the Naples Village Green recently. (De Busk Photo)

Owner of Sunrise Fitness Personal Training, Amy Young (center) encourages Katherine Riggs (left), of Naples, and Jennifer Hall-Lewis, of Casco, during a boot camp fitness session on the Naples Village Green recently. (De Busk Photo)

By Dawn De Busk

Staff Writer

NAPLES — Amy Young believes that the best workout is totally low-cost and relies on taking advantage of the natural environment.

As the owner of Sunrise Fitness Personal Training, Young is living proof that people do not have to invest in expensive exercise equipment to accomplish their fitness goals.

“The basis of my outdoor boot camp is to use mostly the environment with only a little equipment to get a fantastic total body workout,” Young said.

“I like to prove that you can get a great workout anywhere that you are,” she said.

Since this spring, even during rain showers, Young has been conducting a boot camp fitness session in the green space outside the Naples Town Office.

“The Naples Village Green has been great! It is a wide-open space with plenty of parking. We’ve used the benches, the gazebo, the outside wall of the Grange Hall, the trees and the playground,” she said.

“Exercises, layout, and equipment all change each week,” she said, adding that she sometimes gets free-spirited workout ideas from YouTube.

“One day, we ran up the hill on Lambs Mill Road right behind the town hall,” she said.

The location “is also right on (Route) 302 so people can see what we are up to,” she said.

In fact, drivers often catch a glimpse of a group of people donned in sneakers and exercise gear running in place or doing pushups — when the morning sun is warming the day and when the Village Green is misting like Ireland and even during a few downpours.

“When I set up my outdoor boot camp, I knew it had to be a ‘rain or shine’ event. I am committed to being there every week with or without sun,” Young said.

A few weeks ago, “we got poured on,” she said.

“My attitude for this is that people need their workout either way and from my experience, some people will use any excuse they can to not do it. Don’t let weather be the excuse that holds you back,” she said.

“Honestly, after you get started, it’s not that bad, just a little more messy. Afterwards, you feel that much more accomplished that you got up, got out there, and got it done anyways,” she said.

Young is a lifetime Mainer, who moved to Naples three years ago. Her original plan did not include getting a paycheck from fitness. In fact, she had other career goals in mind.

“My background started with a bachelor’s degree in marine biology from Maine Maritime Academy. I played varsity volleyball all four years and really gained my love for fitness from that,” Young said.

So, her education plans shifted.

“After college I decided not to pursue marine biology, but personal training! I obtained my personal training certification from The National Academy of Sports Medicine (NASM) in 2012 as well as CPR, which is required. Last winter, I got a second certification from NASM in corrective exercise,” she said.

“I am really interested in integrative and plant-based nutrition, so I may find a certification for that in the future,” she said.

Through Sunrise Fitness, Young offers an indoor boot camp on Monday and Wednesday at 9 a.m. as well as a Tabatha class on Thursday at 9 a.m. Those classes take place at the new Fountain of You studio in Naples.

“I have clients that come every week to my classes. I get to know them the best I can in the short amount of time we have together each week. I learn about their goals, fitness history, diets, and what makes them motivated,” Young said.”

“I try to push each client to do their best each week and try not to cut too much slack but they all hear me saying to go at their own pace, compete against only themselves, do the best they can,” she said.

Young also does personal training out of her home gym as well as in her backyard, she said. Currently, she is training several small groups that are not part of her classes.

Young likes the idea of doing small group training for interested parties looking to get fit together.

Additionally, Young has openings for one-on-one fitness training.

“My one-on-one clients I usually get to know very well during their consult with me. I have a client (whom) I have been training three times a week for almost two years at her house and I know most of her family and some coworkers,” she said.

“I have a giant tire at my house now for groups and clients, but I don’t have much of a way to get it to boot camp. I have clients flip it, do pushups, tricep dips, toe taps, hop-throughs, etcetera, with the tire,” she said.

“‘Boot camp’ sounds more intimidating than it really is. But, ‘fun outdoor total body group workout’ is too long of a name,” Young joked.

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