Body Attack Instructor Training: Weekend Reflection

What a weekend!


It all began bright and early on Saturday morning. My alarm was set just in case Thomas decided to sleep in (he didn’t)…

…and it ended on Sunday evening in a ridiculously exhausted, sweaty, mentally/physically drained, yet incredibly inspired state of mind.


It was my much anticipated weekend of Les Mills Body Attack instructor training. It’s been many years in the making, but due to a cross-country move, a cross-planet move, a pregnancy, and a baby, the timing was never quite right. I finally took the plunge, registered, and off I went into an intense weekend of fitness and learning.

I’ve been doing Les Mills classes forever. Well, 10 years. So, ‘forever’ in terms of my gym-going life. I’ve always loved them and hoped that someday I could be up there on the stage teaching my favourite class- Body Attack. However, being a participant and being an instructor are two very, veeeeeeerrrrry different things. There were definitely times during the weekend where I wondered if I was actually cut out for the intensity of it all. Although it certainly helped that I have a lot of familiarity with the program, understand group fitness choreography, have instructed bootcamps, and am a classroom teacher, taking on the role of a Les Mills instructor is so much more complex and challenging than I’d ever imagined.

I’ve been through a lot of physical challenges in my athletic life, and this weekend definitely stands out as one of the toughest! I had a top notch and inspiring instructor (Eve) who pushed us to our limits, not to mention a fantastic mix of new and experienced Les Mills instructors who were incredibly motivating. Although Les Mills is an international fitness organization, I must say it was pretty exciting to do my training in Australia with an instructor who makes appearances in the release videos and workshops!


I posted a similar photo on the Femme Fitale Facebook page over the weekend:

Honestly, on Saturday night after Day 1 of training, I had hit my discouraged, low-point…

  • I was frustrated with myself over my first track presentation and knew I had to step it up big time on Sunday if I was going to pass.
  • I felt like my body had been run over by a car and wondered how I was going to physically cope in the morning.
  • I was anxious about having to do dozens and dozens (and dozens…) of toe pushups in front of everyone, when I have been doing “girl pushups” for the past year and a half.
  • I was disappointed that I missed Thomas crawl across the living room for the first time while I was away.
  • I was so hungry, but could barely eat because my nerves got the best of me.
  • I was exhausted and my mind was drawing blanks when I was practicing my presentation track.
  • I burst into tears when the choreography DVD wouldn’t work on my computer (thank goodness for tech-savvy husbands).
  • I questioned if I actually had what it took to be a Les Mills instructor. What had I gotten myself into? What was I thinking?

This weekend was a big step for me. It was one of the first things I’ve done for my own personal development in a long time. I was nervous, anxious, worried, and overwhelmed. However, I really don’t think we can change and better ourselves unless we step out of our comfort zones and face challenges. It definitely feels amazing to tackle something we’ve been ‘talking about forever’. Just as our instructor said at one point over the weekend: “People usually give up on things simply because they fear failure.” It’s so true.

If we don’t take chances and risk failure, then we might never know what could have been.


I am so happy to say that I passed my assessment on Sunday and am well on my way to being part of the Les Mills tribe! There is still so much ahead of me in terms of getting my full certification: shadowing, mentoring, team teaching, and a full class video submission to the head office. I have twelve months to complete the rest of my training, but my goal is to be fully certified by April! Fingers crossed it all goes as planned.

I’m so glad that I took a chance on this weekend, that people believed in me, and that I chose to believe in myself. I’ve written before about “Making It Happen”, and this is just another one of those life moments when I had to dig deep and take my own advice. It was tough, but it was definitely worth it.

21 Thoughts on “Body Attack Instructor Training: Weekend Reflection

  1. Congrats on passing! One of my favourite quotes is “there is scarcely any trouble without passion”-Camus. Whenever I’m struggling with something I like to take a step back and remind myself I am choosing this struggle because I am passionate about it. Then there are the times when I’m struggling because I’m not at ALL passionate about the topic…but we’ll ignore those moments for today 😉

    • Kelly @ Femme Fitale on October 22, 2013 at 6:35 am said:

      Thanks Davida! I completely agree. If we are passionate enough about something to throw ourselves into it, then it will be worth it in the end.

  2. Oh Kelly, I totally understand how overwhelmed you were – it’s a big deal but you did it!!

    You faced all of those challenges and struggles and ended up getting what you wanted and that is something to be proud of. I’m proud of you too! xx

  3. Congrats Kelly!! You passed!!!…that’s so exciting!!
    You were emotionally and physically drained – which is totally understandable!!
    Love that simple picture….Magic happens outside of your comfort zone! It’s a seriously powerful saying – that for some reason is so hard for us to remember :)
    -Sammy @

  4. Congrats on passing Kelly! That’s amazing! I’ve actually never done any of Les Mills’ workouts before, but they sound intense. Though it was tough, it must feel like an amazing accomplishment. So happy for your!

  5. Congrats Kelly! I am so proud of you!! Body Attack is my all time favorite class. I am OBSESSED.

    I had such a hard time making it to classes in California that I had to drop my gym membership but I really want to get back into it. I did it for 3 years straight when I lived in Texas so I can understand how strenuous it must be to become a teacher. I seriously cannot imagine doing all of the required push ups on my toes! I would have to stop and demonstrate the easier options, haha. Plus breathing while talking? That’s an art.

    I am excited to read more about your training! It is something I have thought of doing because I really love the class that much. I can imagine it is hard to be away from Thomas but at least it is only temporary. Hang in there!

    • Kelly @ Femme Fitale on October 24, 2013 at 10:25 pm said:

      I’m the same as you! I’ve participated forever, and it has been my all-time favourite Les Mills class. So I thought I would just take the plunge and finally get my certification! You’ll surely hear lots more about my Body Attack adventures :) Thanks for the well wishes.

  6. That is a really nice little cartoon about stepping outside of your comfort zone! Thanks!

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  8. Congratulations on passing! I was actually just on the Less Mills website yesterday thinking “I want to do this one day.” I’m not ready for it yet…but I’m making plans to work it into my future. Good luck with the rest of your training!

  9. Congratulations! BodyAttack is my absolute favourite form of exercise :) Can’t wait to hear more about your Attack instructor journey. Tonight is new release night at my local club. We all got t-shirts that say Keep Calm and BodyAttack 😉

  10. YAY! Congrats- I’m so proud. Start shadowing straight away and find a mentor who will look after you- do you have a gym and mentor? Hope to see you at the next workshop. Go girl! xx

    • Kelly @ Femme Fitale on October 30, 2013 at 10:37 pm said:

      I have a mentor lined up! Doing my CPR recert this weekend, so hoping to get everything underway in the next week or two. I don’t want to wait any longer than that :)
      Let me know if you plan to attend the quarterly!

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  13. Emma on July 12, 2014 at 6:02 pm said:

    Hey!! Just wondering if you have done your certification video? Any advice if yes? Thanks, Emma

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