FFFC: Please introduce yourself to our readers.
SC: My name is Shawn M. Chevalier. I’m a husband, father and owner of Hardbody Outdoor Fitness, LLC. in Columbia, Maryland. I moved from Queens, New York in 2005 prior to getting married to my high school sweetheart and made Maryland our home. As I mentioned above, I have 2 little ones (ages 8 and 5). The family is very important to me and as much I would love to train myself and others; my wife and I make it our duty to balance a healthy lifestyle, while making them a part of it. They understand why we exercise and we try our best to make eating and living healthy not a stressful task, but fun, educational and teachable, so that they can express it to those who come in contact with them. I am also a triathlete and triathlon has been a pivotal part of my health journey. Discipline, consistency and purpose are words that describe my goals and what I express to friends/family and each client that I have an opportunity to train.
FFFC: How did you get started in fitness?
SC: I played high school football and I’ve always had a desire (like many athletes), to improve my 40 yard sprint, get bigger and just be an overall good athlete. What I was taught in high school was the norm among NY city schools. Lift heavy weight; get big and run more. While that works for many, it wasn’t the most effective way of teach athletes, because each person is unique and requires a varied approach. So that intrigued me and I decided to go to college and learn the physiology of the body through biology. That provided the ground-work and ever since then, I have been into fitness.
FFFC: Why did you start your bootcamp?
SC: I decided when I came to Maryland to venture into the bootcamp world and the only way you could evaluate the bootcamp “space” was to get involved. So I was a trainer for the Sergeant’s Program. They wanted to open a new location in Catonsville at the Bally’s. I took over for one trainer who was leaving and the attendance was under 10 members. It was a new location, so it required some footwork and publicity to increase the enrollment and develop a name. I thought about starting a blog to support the class and post up healthy recipes, our daily workouts, motivation and other stats from the class. It was a success as it was starting to get attention and people saw what we were doing. People love to see themselves working hard and the group grew to over 25 members. In order to continue the success, I need resources from the program and when I presented my wants, I was shut down. That was the indicator that made the light bulb go off and do what I wanted. Six months later, Hardbody Outdoor Fitness, LLC was created.
FFFC: What do you like most about what you do?
SC: I really enjoy seeing each person present with their individual need(s), then tackling each need in a group atmosphere. Whether it’s healthy eating, exercise, motivation or time management, these are issues that so many face and I keep each need in the back of my head. During each workout, there is a small component that will help he/she reach their goal. They may not know that directly, but through constant communication via our blog, encouragement through social media and personal chats, they could look back and say, “I actually do have better
balance now that I compare day #1 with day #100”. We are always evolving and seeing that growth over time is encouraging and it provides hope for the person who may have doubts.
FFFC: What is your favorite exercise routine?
SC: I really enjoy High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT). We are a society that is pressed for time and this allows any participant to give 110% and reap the benefits even after the workout is complete. I don’t think it’s for everyone and in order to avoid injury, I recommend clients to have an array of exercise techniques to minimize injury. We use it in bootcamp and I mix it into my personal training to help increase aerobic/anaerobic function.
FFFC: What do you consider the most useful workout equipment?
SC: Any piece of equipment that can help Activities of Daily Living (ADLs) are “ok” in my book. Our society is very computer-facing and sedentary. So choose equipment that serves multiple purposes is ideal for making exercise fun, challenging and rewarding. I have two pieces of equipment that I recommend and use often, (1) medicine ball, (2) TRX Suspension Trainer. The medicine ball is dynamic and you can work your entire body, while working stability and agility. The TRX Suspension Trainer can be used at home and if you have never used one, we offer a class that will not only work you, but challenge your entire body. It’s a surefire way to take a normal exercise like a squat and add variety that will challenge your muscles and stimulate growth.
FFFC: What do you think is the biggest misconception about this field and what you do?
SC: Many people start and stop out of habit. This back and forth habit may seem like the norm for so many people, but it’s a recipe for disaster. So taking the time to turn your lifestyle into a healthy lifestyle takes work. It’s not an overnight task and you will have to do research. Each person is different and when you become in tuned with yourself, you can then make sound decisions that cater to your personal needs. Living a healthy lifestyle takes hard-work, planning and purpose. If you decide to do it, do it because “you” want to and avoid the yo-yo dieting and fitness routines.
FFFC: What general tips do you have for the average woman balancing family, career with health and fitness?
SC: You are a project manager. If you approach the project unprepared or uneducated about what you’re getting yourself into, you are setting yourself up for failure. Take a step back, remove the wants/desires of others and ask yourself, “What do I want?” When you can be honest with yourself, write those goals down. Those will be your daily marching orders, because it’s what “you” want. Everything that you do, from exercising, grocery shopping, cooking and getting adequate sleep all directs back to what you put into the atmosphere. Do not neglect yourself!!! Here is an example that I keep on the forefront of my head; I believe in God; my wife and I need a solid relationship so that we can be great parents; family is important…then everything else. When you can prioritize your life according to your values, everything will fall into place. In order to be the best woman, mom or parent, you have to be at your best so that whoever comes in contact with you is getting the best form of you.
FFFC: Do you have any special events coming up?
SC: We have the second round of our TRX Suspension Trainer course. It’s a 6-week session that starts on January 20th. We will be meeting 2 evenings/week (Mondays and Thursdays). It’s catered to push you outside of your comfort zone and get your blood-pumping. We have an introduction class on Thursday, January 16th at 6:30pm in Columbia. For more information, you can visit the Hardbody Outdoor Fitness website (www.hardbodyoutdoorfitness.com), under Classes and TRX Training. We do holiday workouts for members and friends and we can keep you updated on when the next big outdoor workout will be.
FFFC: How can our readers learn more about your bootcamp?
SC: The best way to learn more about bootcamp or TRX Suspension Training is to visit our website at (www.hardbodyoutdoorfitness.com). We also have an active Facebook page (www.facebook.com/hardbodyoutdoorfitness), where we post about our morning workouts and daily motivation. We all need motivation, encouragement and a sound opinion. We also have a YouTube Channel for the occasional video to support your active lifestyle (www.youtube.com/hardbodyfitness).
FFFC: How can our readers find you?
SC: All of the links above are sufficient or I can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or via the ONE WEEK FREE TRIAL button on the website. We offer a FREE ONE WEEK TRIAL Membership because before you buy a car, don’t you want to do a test-drive? We offer bootcamp 4 days/week (except Wednesdays) at 5:30am-6:30am at SkyZone Trampoline Park in Columbia. Once the weather warms up in the spring, we move back to Meadowbrook Park in Ellicott City (off of Route 103 or Route 100).
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