By Gina Garcia

MT. HELIX -- I have always associated the amphitheater at the top of Mt. Helix as a pleasant place for lovely music and great plays.

No more.

As the sun rose Monday morning, we gathered -- 25 women wanting to tone, loose weight and get healthy. It was to be the first of a 14 day boot camp that will use the steps, inclines and, as it turned out, even the fences of this lovely hilltop, to try and whip ourselves into shape.

Coupled with a lean and healthy eating regimen, this, we were promised, would transform us.

The first day certainly didn't disappoint.

I arrived nervous but optimistic and, after the longest 60 minutes can possible feel, I was already transformed into a sweaty and sore lump of middle age anxiety.

Could I possibly have gotten this far out shape? I asked myself this each time I tried to lift my leg more than three times in any given direction and on the fourth attempt THE LEG WOULDN'T MOVE!

There were stair climbs and bungee cord pulling and the sorts of contortions on a mat you'd normally have to be playing Twister to experience.

Jake Glaze, the svengali of this camp, is a non-stop ball of energy who clearly spends great parts of his days toning every muscle in his body. But in this case, it was the constant, kind and only occasionally pointed cajoling voice of his that punctuated the morning.

Can an hour really feel like a day?

Yes it can.

Still, when the hour did end and we were still standing, we all wandered back down the hill feeling accomplished and quietly wondering what we would feel like Tuesday morning when we arrive for day 2.

I’ll be weighing in on the boot camp from time to time. Stay tuned.


For more information about the San Diego Adventure Boot Camp for Women go to:

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