My favorite kind of cardio empowers and unleashes my inner ‘Bad Girl’
“I feel powerful, peaceful, and like I can take on the world.” Christina A.
Recently, I’ve been posting a lot about CrossFit–and rightfully so because I’m in love with it. It’s kind of like that whole “new love” experience. I’m giddy, I can’t shut up, and I spend every free moment I have working on (ok maybe just dreaming of) my power cleans and double-unders. I love the changes in my body, the feeling of soreness that I haven’t experienced in a long time, and the physical and mental challenges that await me at my local box.
But CrossFit doesn’t define me as an athlete. Sure, I absolutely LOVE it, but there’s a lot more that I do to stay in shape, and more that I love as well. I love lifting heavy weight–and am sort of known for it. Maybe it’s because I’ve always hated cardio…any kind of it. Ask any of my friends and they’ll tell you how much “Steph hates to run.” I also hate cardio machines. I’m horrible at rowing–I’m convinced it’s not made for short people–and I get so flippin’ bored on anything else. Books, iPods, tv’s, anything or nothing, I can’t stand doing the same motion over and over and over. And over. I’m just not a little cardio bunny. I can’t talk on the phone while on the elliptical, and sprints intervals–though incredibly good for me–make me hate life. So how do I cope? By teaching bodyCOMBAT.
BodyCombat is a 55-minute interval cardio kickboxing program designed by Les Mills to tone, strengthen, increase endurance, and build self-esteem. The class is organized by ten tracks and each track is choreographed to deliver optimal results.
“This fiercely energetic program is inspired by mixed martial arts and draws from a wide array of disciplines such as karate, boxing, taekwondo, tai chi and muay thai.” Les Mills
“Combat really does provide a full body/cardio workout and I love how it incorporates many types of martial arts.” Laura H.
When the 55 minutes is over, I’ve kicked, punched, blitzed, lunged, kneed, kata’d (is that a word?) my way through mega calories toward superior cardio fitness. I’m not bragging–the website claims this is true, and people across the globe love bodyCOMBAT. Its Facebook page alone has over 40,000 fans!
When I leave the stage after my Combat class, I’m drenched with sweat, my eyeliner (that I had on for work–no, I didn’t put it on for class) is around my chin, and my hair looks like a tornado swept through. I love it. I LOVE IT.
“I am so obsessed that I will even get up to go to a class at 6am on a day I don’t even have to work!” Laura H.
BodyCOMBAT has done something for me that will keep me coming back to class–whether I’m the teacher or the participant. I’m stronger, my shoulders are way sexier, and my confidence makes me feel like I’m a total badass. And I know I’m not the only one who feels this way:
“If you have had a bad day, it just takes one really good Muay Thai or shoulder track to get you moving so fast that you forget your problems and feel less stressed. Also, you always leave KNOWING that you worked hard…the sweat and exhaustion remind you of your effort!” Renee W.
I couldn’t agree more. One good Muay Thai track will leave me gasping for breath, holding my side, and loving every minute of it.
“I sweat buckets and love being pushed and challenged by the instructors to give more than I think I can. I feel strong, bad ass, positive and energized afterwards; like nothing can ever get me down again. I picture the person that needs an attitude adjustment or the disease that needs to be cured and just dominate it…give it the beat down in my workout.” Liz C.
As an instructor, I love pushing participants past their limits. When you see that fist reach the air at the end of track 8 and the wide grin that takes over the whole face, I know I’ve done something right. And as a participant, I can totally relate with Liz’s “life beat down.” My first trip back to the gym after my dad died was to a Combat class that my friend Alexandra was actually teaching for me. I just needed to hit, kick, and punch. And when I saw Alexandra smiling at me–because I was having a good time with my friends in class–I felt something I won’t ever forget. Yeah, it was “just a group-fit class,” but it was a gathering of friends, an unleashing of emotion, and oh–a calorie burn to top it off. I almost forgot about that.
“Combat is a great workout set to some great music that goes by really quickly. I would hate the thought of running on the treadmill for 60 minutes, but 60 minutes of combat goes by so fast because I am having fun. I love the energy from the instructors and also from the participants! And I know I am torching major calories…I am soaking wet and starving by the end of class. I would also encourage newbies…it’s easy to jump right in; don’t be intimidated by the choreography!” Robin D.
“I love Combat because It gives you lots of energy. The classes fly by so fast. The cardio part is my favorite. I don’t want the class to end I feel like I could do another round right after.” Natasha C.
“I was a dancer and miss that, but feel like I can get some of that in this awesome class while kicking ass and calories at the same time!” Laura H.
“It makes working out fun! The music keeps it energetic and the moves make you feel powerful:) The awesome instructors keep it fun too. I am one of the most uncoordinated people on the planet, so if I can do it, anyone can!! It is the highlight of my day!” Tracey S.
If that’s not enough to convince anyone to try it out, read what Alexandra, a bodyCOMBAT instructor, says about her love for the program:
“While I love everything about Combat, there are two things that just really get me high:
There is something so powerful about Combat music. It’s almost as if the songs were made for the workout rather than the other way around. Each song selected goes perfectly with the moves and the featured Martial Art. Once the music starts, I am able to completely lose myself in the workout. Even when it hurts, there will be some explosive beat that pushes me right through my limits, and there is nothing quite like that feeling.
Laura adds, “The variety of the tracks and choreography is amazing and very well put together; it feels like Christmas with every new release!”
Whether it’s a Roundhouse, Side Kick, Back Kick, Push Kick, I feel like a complete badass doing it. I can leave the rest of my life at the door and transform into a ninja for the next 55 minutes. Something about those makes me feel unstoppable and I love seeing the same happen for my members!
Need stress relief?
Combat is one of the best stress relievers I have and take advantage of! The energy of all the instructor’s is what I feed off and get energy from plus I strive to work as hard as I can and kick ass. I feel that I sweat the most in combat than any other class. That class is easy to burn up to 500 to 600 calories if not more. One of my favorite classes! Lindsey W.
How about a sense of security in your life?
I believe that it gives women self defense and security …especially being a single mom with two boys. I envision all of the things in my life and the past that has hurt me, and just push push push forward. The instructors make me laugh and push harder in class and I love it. Everyone who takes the class becomes a little combat family ! ❤ Christina A.
So what’s stopping you from trying?
Other benefits of a bodyCOMBAT class are:
- Gets you fighting fit and looking ripped
- Improves heart and lung function and reduces the risk of heart disease
- Tones and shapes key muscle groups
- Maximizes calorie burn during and after your workout
- Develops co-ordination and agility of a mixed martial arts warrior
- Teaches you the moves of an elite martial arts expert
- Improves bone density
- Improves posture, core strength and stability
- Builds self-confidence, strength and power
- Keep pushing your limits with quarterly new releases
Besides feeling strong and bad a$$ it’s a great cardio challenge!! No matter how many times I have done a class, I walk out every time dripping with sweat and feeling like I accomplished something. I will give kuddos to the great instructors […] there is no comparison to the energy and intensity they have. It definitely becomes an addiction! Michelle R.
Last, check out the video below for a taste of the music, the fun, the sweat, the katas, and the badassery.
What might be the best part of bodyCOMBAT? You can find a class anywhere in the world. Find a class now!
Read more about Les Mills: the corporation that strives for a fitter planet.
For more of my combat teaching pics, click HERE!
And in the words of Les Mills, BLAH! Be Loud and Heard! What’s YOUR favorite Les Mills program? Fave release? Fave part of Combat? Let us know in the comments below what you think!
As always, STAY WITH THE FIGHT!
Liz Castro says
My favorite track in the new release, 54, is near the end, track 7. The adrenaline is running through my veins and my energy level is through the roof. I get to take it to the street…squeeze my shoulders blades together and thrust my hands forward with all my might to push my visiualized opponent back, finish him off with a push kick…repeat several times…on both sides.Then later in the track, I get to hold him down with one hand while the other one mercilessly finishes him off as I lift my fist above my shoulder and bring it down fast and furious into his face over and over again. I think we get some knees and running men to finish off the cardio. Pure cardio bliss. An addiction that doesn’t require rehabilitation. My opponent on the other hand….
There are so many things I love about this post, Liz, that I can’t even begin to comment. The little winking icon just says it all.
Liz Castro says
Except typing quickly I found 2 typos
Should be “visualized” and “shoulder”
never even noticed….
Laura H says
I love them all 🙂 Picking certain tracks is hard for me, but usually I love the most hardcore ones like muay thai, ones with a sick beat, and of course, leg tracks!!! 🙂
And totally by coincidence, on the day I posted this, I came home to find the brand new release hanging out in the mailbox!! Combat 55!
Tracey S. says
I love “Drummer Boy!” There are so many I love, I can’t even think of them all:) The new release when we do all the hooks is awesome too. The back of my shoulders were so sore from that last week! It was fabulous:) I have been teaching adjectives in grammar lately so let’s see how many I can use to describe Combat: fabulous, amazing, stupendous, challenging, empowering, awesome, marvelous, unbelievable…Okay, you get the picture:)
Natasha Cooper says
I like any of the combos with the lunges with the legs. My legs were burning so good 🙂 Also I like the knee raises, high cardio part.
Christina a says
I love drummer boy. The new track 7. I also like the track 8 I believe where we duck under from weight room to the bags then we switch. I like the new warm up. I also like the ” wake me up inside leg track ” I didn’t like the ” get on the floor leg track ” until we did it a ton and I got used to it, i love the beat to it….The new ab track is bad ass too. Anything that’s gonna get our shoulders burning and my abs feeling like they have done work is fine by me, if you want results it needs to burn !!!! If I don’t leave their looking like someone soaked my hair with water…. I feel like I haven’t done my job. So bring on the sweat.