It happens the minute you walk thru the doors of Burn Boot Camp . . . the feeling of energy, community, and strength that overtakes you . . . it’s a hard thing to ignore.  Burn Boot Camp, nestled in the corner of the Back Bay Center off Irvine Avenue in Costa Mesa is a gym every mother needs.  In today’s climate we are often told that to be a good mother we also need to take care of ourselves.  And while that is great in concept, it is often a hard thing to put into practice.  Burn wants to help you with that.  With short 45-minute classes and FREE childcare, Burn wants you to CHOOSE YOU.

I recently sat down with the new owners of Burn Boot Camp, Kelly and Shannon, who, along with their husbands, took over the business because they believed in the mission of empowering women.  Here is what they had to say:

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Tell me about the concept behind Burn Boot Camp?

Burn Boot Camp was established to fill a void in the fitness sphere where women can come as they are, experience an encouraging and unifying community (as opposed to in and out without much interaction), and see life changing results in their body.  It gives women the opportunity to prioritize their health (physically, mentally, and emotionally!) without any of the excuses of childcare, having to plan ahead, motivation, etc.

Our goal at Burn Boot Camp is to add more value to a woman’s life than any other gym or fitness center.  We are about people first, and seek to create a thriving community of women who are constantly encouraged and challenged to be the strongest and healthiest versions of themselves. This should be FUN with women giving their best alongside one another.  Burn Boot Camp is a place where people won’t go through the doors unnoticed.

How does it work?

Burn’s systematic protocol is primarily a mix of burst training and strength training.  The motto is “always different and never the same” so that no one who enters the doors will complain of a fitness plateau.  Burst training and HIIT training are fat shredding training methods that elevate the heart rate and burn more than 9x the calories of traditional cardio.  These training styles also create the “after burn” effect for up to 72 hours post training, so additional calories are burned post workout.  Strength training allows women to increase their muscle mass and their body’s ability to burn fat.  As lean tissue accumulates, their Basal Metabolic Rate (calories burned at rest) increases.  The goal is to create strong women so that as fat begins to decrease, what’s left underneath is gorgeous lean muscle.

Why do you think Burn is the best place for the busy mom, or the busy woman?

Our childcare is complimentary which allows women to prioritize themselves for 45 minutes a day without having to worry about finding a babysitter.  Women don’t have to sign up ahead of time (there is always room!) so there is so much freedom with the constantly evolving schedules of a mom or young woman.

We promote personal training in a group atmosphere.  The trainers work really hard to give individual attention to clients who have injuries/are pregnant, and those who need modifications up or down.  Our goal is that even in a group setting (which is fun, encouraging, and challenging), women are also able to get the attention they need to thrive and improve daily.

We  also offer complimentary nutritional counseling – which is either nonexistent or extremely expensive at most other gyms.  This gives women a chance to meet one on one with a trainer who cares deeply about them to help them set and achieve their goals.

I also have to mention our floating floor.  Most gyms have a hard floor surface that is incredibly difficult on the joints long term, especially with high-impact exercises.  Our floating floor is incredible for injury prevention and allows women to workout harder and better than before.

What brought you to Burn Boot Camp initially?

Shannon:  Kelly!  We are both incredibly active individuals and had a hard time fitting in our workouts once we had our first babies!  We were getting desperate because we could not either find the time, place, or motivation to see the results we were looking for.  Kelly ended up googling “boot camp with childcare” and we found Burn Boot Camp!  I have tried every type of workout and was previously a Pilates instructor prior to Burn ownership.  I can say that by far Burn has created the most radical results to my health and fitness.

Kelly:  As Shannon mentioned, I googled “boot camp with childcare”.  I had a really hard time motivating myself to get back into shape post-baby because of how difficult I found it to schedule workouts.  I was either having to workout at home while the baby slept (which didn’t get me the results I wanted), or, I had to pay extra for child care to go to the gym.  I’ve always loved the competitiveness of group fitness classes so I knew that I wanted a ‘boot camp style’ workout.  I came for the child care, but what hooked me was the results I saw.  In less than three weeks, I was more fit and toned than I had ever been!

Why did you decide to take on ownership?

We were both so amazed and grateful for the results we saw in our own bodies but also the value that Burn brought to our lives.  It became the favorite part of our day where we got to be around friends and other women in similar life stages, work hard and see results, as well as lose the mommy guilt!  Our babies were just on the other side of the door for 45 minutes.  Burn felt like the best kept secret of Orange County, and we wanted more women to experience what we found!  As we looked into opening another location, the owners approached us to take over the Costa Mesa location (they were previously operating from North Carolina).  We love this community and immediately jumped at the opportunity.

You both have a toddler and another child on the way.  What are the keys to running a business, being a mom, and still fitting in me-time like working out?

Shannon:  My son Kace is 19 months old, and I have another son coming in May!  One of the beauties of our job is that we’re in the gym all the time so it keeps us motivated.  We get to take advantage of the perks as well, and can bring our kiddos with us whether we are working or working out!  Especially with two of us, we are able to utilize our gifts, share the workload, and not spend too much time away from our children.  It has definitely taken some more balance (like lots of work during naptimes) but it is worth it to create a life where our kiddos thrive and we do too!  Burn is such an encouraging and uplifting place to be, so it doesn’t feel like a huge sacrifice.

Kelly:  My daughter Rilyn is 22 months old and I have another daughter coming in November (yes, we already have marriage arrangements with Shannon’s boys)!  It’s all about finding balance and having a strong support system.  My husband is one amazing dude and has been so supportive of me adding this to my plate.  Also, as Shannon mentioned, the four of us are really able to delegate and lean on each other whenever we need extra support.  We are like family, and it’s been so fun going into business with our best friends!  The last thing I’ll say is that it has required me to be very strategic about how I spend every minute of my day.  When I’m at the gym, I try to be fully present and working on that business.  When I’m at home with my daughter, all of my attention is on her, and then when she’s asleep at night, it’s back to work.  Our Netflix binges have definitely been put on hold!

How long have you lived in the area?

Shannon:  I’ve been here for 3 years now, but my husband grew up in Newport Beach so it felt like home long before we moved back here.

Kelly:  My husband and I live in Huntington Beach, and we have lived there since we got married in 2010.  We are both originally from Chicago, but Orange County is now home.

What are your favorite things to do with your kids or family?

Shannon:  Be outside and be active!  Spend time with family and friends.  Cook and enjoy fun meals together.

Kelly:  We are beach bums!  My husband surfs, plays beach football, and we play beach volleyball together.  My daughter literally wakes up every day and asks if it’s “Beach Day” because she loves it so much.  We try to go 1-2 times a week.

If you could give moms one piece of advice, what would it be?

Shannon:  Have grace on yourself and allow yourself to have a fresh start every day.  Surround yourself with women who will love you through all the ups and downs of life and motherhood.  Remember your worth does not come from how you are doing or feeling.

Kelly:  Give yourself the freedom to choose yourself daily.  Maybe that means keeping the kids in their room for five extra minutes so you can have another cup of coffee.  Maybe that means indulging in that special treat at the end of the day.  Maybe, it’s asking someone to watch your kids so you can simply drive with the windows down and your favorite tunes blaring.  Or, maybe that’s prioritizing your fitness for the first time in a long time.  Whatever it is, you are worthy.   And . . . you’re doing a great job!

Thank you Kelly and Shannon!

Burn has a special going on right now (thru April) where you can join the Burn Community for 30 days to see if it is the right fit for you.  For more details, visit Burn Boot Camp HERE.

**Co-ed classes are available in the evening, and on Saturday mornings.  Saturday morning camps are also FREE to the public so it’s a great time to bring in your spouse.

**Photo credit:  Shastin Diaz

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