Tag Archives: virtual bootcamp

Twenty-Minute Time Out

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It’s been a busy March.

My family had a fantastic Spring Break vacation to London, where we visited lots of old friends, played in our favorite parks, explored several museums, and rode all manner of public transportation.  We were spoiled by gorgeous weather– sunny and high 60s– which meant we were able to spend hours each day outside enjoying the city.

Our reentry to reality has been a bit rough.  I’m grateful that all three of my kids were such flexible, happy travellers, but jet-lag hit my three-year-old Stowaway pretty hard.  We’ve had a week of not-so-pleasant behavior, with added Mama-clinginess thrown in for good measure.  I’m not going to lie to you: it’s been exhausting for both of us.

Add in that I opened registrations for my swim lessons on Monday, and I’m in full prep mode for next Monday’s kickoff of Balance Virtual Bootcamp.  I’m back to seeing my full slate of personal training clients.  And there are the other two delightful children who also deserve my attention and interest in their soccer games, piano practice, and choir concerts.  So, yeah, it’s been a busy month.

I’m working hard to keep my sense of balance– I calendar my own workouts and ensure that I get at least 20 minutes of quiet time each day.  That time may come during a run or doing something glamorous like grocery shopping, but I know that I need the alone time to breathe deeply.  On days I’d like some chit-chat, I’ll walk to my neighborhood bakery and enjoy a decaf, non-fat latte (what one local joint calls a “no fun”).  I always run in to someone I know there, and having just a few minutes of “water-cooler talk” helps me feel connected to other people in my community.  It’s never a long experience, but giving myself a few minutes every day where I can drop the mantle of being responsible for everyone else is rejuvenating.

What’s your favorite way to recharge?

Good health and great happiness to you!



It’s not too late for you bloggers and fitness enthusiasts to help spread the word about Balance Virtual Bootcamp in exchange for a free registration.  Leave a comment or shoot an email to karen at balancepft dot com to see how we can work together. 




Spring Has Sprung


Today was the first day of swimming lesson registration, which is as sure a sign of Spring around these parts as the bluebonnets popping up all over.  I’m honored by the positive response I’ve received already– working with children (and adults!) as they learn the essential skill of swimming is such a thrill.  I can’t wait for it to warm up just a bit more and get in the pool.

Check out my website for the lowdown on my private and semi-private swim lessons.  You can always shoot me an email (karen at balancepft dot com) if you want to register or ask questions.

As I mentioned last week, registration is also now open for the Spring 2014 offering of Balance Virtual Bootcamp.  If you’re looking for a way to fit efficient, effective exercise into your busy life, this bootcamp delivers.   Three times a week for eight weeks, a workout arrives to your inbox.  In just 30 minutes per session, you can gain strength, improve your cardiovascular fitness, and improve body confidence knowing that you’re doing something healthy for yourself.

Are you a blogger or fitness trainer?  Interested in promoting Balance Virtual Bootcamp in exchange for a free registration—either for you or to give away on your blog?  Shoot me an email or leave a comment, and we’ll see how we can work together.

The excitement of Spring is invigorating.  Hope you’re feeling it, too!

Balance Virtual Bootcamp Returns Soon!


Are you ready?

After taking off the last few weeks, Balance Virtual Bootcamp is kicking off again Monday March 31st.  I’ve been putting together some great new workouts, picking some of the most challenging workouts from the first FIVE rounds of Balance Virutal Bootcamp, and coming up with a program that is accessible, supportive, efficient, and effective.

How does it work?

Every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday for eight weeks, a workout is emailed to you.  There is a description of each exercise, or you can watch a video of each exercise.  Helping you learn good form and stay injury-free is one of the top objectives of Balance Virtual Bootcamp.

How long do the workouts take?

Workouts can be done in 30 minutes, start-to-finish.

Do I need lots of equipment?

No.  Two sets of dumbbells (5lbs and 10lbs for beginners, 8lbs and 12lbs or 15lbs for more advanced exercisers), a resistance band, an interval timer, and a yoga mat are all you really need.  A stability ball is useful but not totally necessary.

Is that all there is?

There is a private Facebook group for each round of Balance Virtual Bootcamp.  We use this forum to support each other, ask and answer questions, and share ideas for healthy living.

How much does it cost?

$50.  All inclusive.

How do I sign up?

Just click on this link, and you’ll go to the health screening page that is the first step in registering for Balance Virtual Bootcamp.  See you there!

Good health and great happiness to you!

Are you a blogger or fitness trainer?  Interested in promoting Balance Virtual Bootcamp in exchange for a free registration—either for you or to give away on your blog?  Shoot me an email or leave a comment, and we’ll see how we can work together.

Gifting Fitness

This wasn’t the blog post I had planned to write for today, but I’ve received several inquires after my series about gift-giving for fitness friends and family

You good people out there want to know how you can give the gift of fitness by giving Balance Virtual Bootcamp membership to a loved one.

Here’s the deal:

  • The next 8-week session of Balance Virtual Bootcamp kicks off Monday, January 6th.
  • Each participant will receive workouts Mon/Wed/Fri (with exercise descriptions and links to demo videos) and have access to a private Facebook page for support.
  • Workouts can be done at home with minimal equipment, and each workout can be adapted to suit a wide range of fitness levels.
  • Registration is $50.

If you’d like to gift a registration, please contact me: karen @ balancepft.com (no spaces).  I’ll invoice you via PayPal and send along and enrollment information that you can give your giftee.

Easy peasy!

(If you have more questions about Balance Virtual Bootcamp, check out the FAQs or send me an email!)

Interested in a more personalized approach?  If you live in Austin, I’d be happy to work with you one-on-one.  My in-home personal training services are a fantastic gift for yourself or someone you love.  I also do small group training if you’d like to work out with your spouse or best friend.   Mother/Daughter pairs have become a big part of Balance in the last few years, and it’s so fun to work with them and watch them bond over healthy activity.

If you’re not in Austin but think having the personalized direction of your workouts would benefit you, check out my virtual training services.

I appreciate your support and interest in my services.  It’s such a blessing to get to do work that I love which brings fun and fascinating people into my life.

Good health and great happiness to you!


Balance Virtual Bootcamp FAQs



Last week I told you that TODAY kicks off the “Healthy for the Holidays” round of Balance Virtual Bootcamp.  I’ve received some interesting questions, so today’s OnBalance will clarify a few things:

I’m out of shape.  Are these workouts going to be too hard for me?

No!  The workouts are designed to be done either for a certain amount of time or for a certain number of repetitions, so the intensity is self-adjusting to your individual fitness level.  People who are very fit can push themselves harder, and people who are just starting an exercise routine can benefit from doing their best.  The workouts are based on the idea of circuit training, which is a popular and effective exercise design method.

I don’t have a gym membership.  Can I do these workouts at home?

Yes!  Balance Virtual Bootcamp is designed to be done at home.  You need only a small amount of floor space and some simple, easy-to-find equipment.

How much money do I have to spend buying equipment?

It depends.  I suggest you have a set of lightweight dumbbells (5lbs for beginners, 8lbs for more advanced participants) and a set of heavier dumbbells ( 10lbs or 12-15lbs, depending on your fitness level).  You also need a resistance tube.  These items can be purchased inexpensively at many stores, or you can check sports resale shops for used equipment.  Check your local CraigsList or Freecycle– weights are often given away by people who don’t want to pay to move them to a new home.

I’m not in the US.  Can I still participate?

Yes!  Balance Virtual Bootcamp has had participants from the US, UK, Malaysia, Singapore, and Venezuela.  Regardless of where you are in the world, you’ll receive your workout email by 6am on YOUR Monday, Wednesday, and Friday.

I fall off the exercise wagon easily.  How will Balance Virtual Bootcamp motivate me?

The private Facebook page is a great way to connect with other participants.  I post questions and challenges to the Facebook page to keep everyone engaged in the program.  Also, there is a $100 cash participation prize awarded at the end of Balance Virtual Bootcamp, and staying on top of the workouts and reporting your results increases your odds of winning.

I have three kids, six cats, and two jobs.  Do I really have time to follow Balance Virtual Bootcamp?

Absolutely! If you’ve read OnBalance before, you know that I am a realist.  I wanted to design a workout program that is achievable for busy people.  This means that most of the workouts can be done in 30 minutes, warm up and cool down included!  You have to be willing to work hard for those 30 minutes, but you can absolutely get a high-quality, effective, and invigorating workout in a very small amount of time.  And because you don’t need a lot of equipment or floor space, these workouts are easy to do in front of the TV or with kids playing nearby– that’s how I do them!

Balance Virtual Bootcamp “Healthy for the Holidays” kicks off TODAY!  Join us for EIGHT weeks of three-times-per-week workouts, and close out 2013 healthy and happy!

It’s not too late to register and get all of the emails from the beginning!

And if you still have questions, leave them in the comments.  I’ll get right back to you.

Good health and great happiness to you!



Holiday Plans

Are you in a Halloween-celebrating place?  If so, Happy Halloween.  As you can see from the above photo (taken at the school carnival last week), this is a fun day for my family.  I never thought I’d get so much joy out of sewing our costumes and dressing up, but to see my kids so happy is a real thrill.

Not to rush your Halloween festivities, but have you given much thought to what your plans are for keeping yourself on the wellness track during the holiday season this year?

I have.

Next Monday, November 4th, we’ll be kicking off our FOURTH round of Balance Virtual Bootcamp.  This “Healthy for the Holidays” edition will keep you moving towards your wellness goals during the often diet-deadly and fitness-unfriendly months of November and December.

Three times a week for eight weeks, a workout arrives in your email in box.  Each workout can be modified to suit any fitness level– from beginners to fitness fiends– and requires very little time or equipment.  There are written descriptions of all exercises plus links to videos that demonstrate good form and modification options.

And just because no one likes to do these things alone, there’s also a private Facebook page where you can share your wins and challenges with the group.  It’s also a place to ask questions and learn new ideas for creating a healthy lifestyle.

The best part is that the entire Balance Virtual Bootcamp is only $50.


I strive to create exceptional value and realistic but challenging workouts.  Here’s what some Fall Balance Virtual Bootcamp participants said about their experience:

“I think you did a great job of mixing up the workouts, so our bodies were always challenged.  Our minds, too, since sometimes it was a counting workout, sometimes it was for time, etc.  I love sore muscles and always have them after my Balance workouts!!”

“I appreciated the videos that showed modifications to lessen the impact of a lot of the more high impact exercises for those of us with bad knees.”

“Pretty challenging but I could really feel it was working muscles that need it!”

Registration for Balance Virtual Bootcamp “Healthy for the Holidays” is OPEN NOW!

Have questions about how Balance Virtual Bootcamp works?  Check out the posts here and here— or leave me a question in the comments.

Good health and great happiness to you!

(And if you’re one of those people who is thinking that you might want to take your passion for fitness and turn it into your business, make sure you’re following my other blog at EQUIP Fitness Business Development.  It’s packed with ideas to help you become a Strong-Skilled-Smart fitness pro.)

Five Ways to Balance

I’m one of those kinds of people for whom productivity is a form of relaxation.  I don’t sit around very well.  I get twitchy.  I get restless.  I get feeling like there’s something I could be doing.  And when I have days where I’m extremely productive, I feel most at peace with myself.

That said, I should be feeling pretty darn peaceful and Balanced over the next few months, because I’ve got a lot going on!  The boys go back to school on Monday, my daughter starts preschool for the very.first.time next month, and I have a whole slew of exciting classes and programs that are starting over the next few weeks.

1. Balance Virtual Bootcamp– Round Three kicks off next Monday, August 26th!  This 8 week program of 30-minute workouts delivered to your in-box three times a week has built a loyal following already.  The efficient and effective workouts are perfect for someone trying to start a fitness program or who now has less time because there are more kid-commitments to juggle (ME!).  Register NOW— you’ll be glad you did.

2. Aqua Kriya Yoga– I have classes on Thursdays from 6.30-7.30 from now until the end of September for the bargain price of $10/class.  Never done yoga before?  The water is a great aid in learning.   Advanced yogini looking to deepen your practice? Take it off the mat and feel the energy of the water.  Email me at karen at balancepft.com to save your place in the pool– classes fill quickly.  ALSO, I love to host private aqua yoga classes, so contact me if you have a mom’s group, bachelorette party, or women’s circle interested in a private event.

3. Prenatal/Postnatal Group Circuit Training Classes– I haven’t offered group classes in a few years, but they’re back due to popular demand!  We’ll do a mix of cardio and strength training, and I’ll be modifying to workouts to suit each participant’s needs.  I LOVE working with perinatal women, and I’m so excited for these Sunday morning classes to begin September 1st.  Register today, as space is limited!

4. Swimming Lessons– The season is winding down, but I do still have very limited openings through September.  Lessons are in the late afternoon and evening.  Email me at karen at balancepft.com for more information!

5. Personal Training– One of the bummers of my extended summer vacation is that I miss my clients.  For reals!!  I’m so glad to have seen so many of you last week, and I’m looking forward to catching up with everyone else soon.  If you’ve ever thought about hiring a trainer but aren’t really sure it’s worth the money, I’d love to talk with you about how I can help!  Not in Austin?  No worries– I do virtual training, too!

And one BONUS, which I haven’t talked too much about here…..

Last Spring I started a new company, EQUIP Fitness Business Development, because I’ve so enjoyed building Balance Personal Fitness Training that I want to help other people passionate about fitness follow their entrepreneurial dreams.  EQUIP’s Strong-Skilled-Smart program enrolls its first cohort into the six-week business development journey in September.  If you or someone you know is interested in owning your own fitness biz, make sure you’re on my newsletter list for the inside scoop!

Wishing all of you a productive & peaceful day!