I just finished the 12 week session of a program called the “Biggest Loser” class at Rondeau’s Kickboxing. It’s also sometimes called the “Transform You” class. A little background: Christina Rondeau is a former professonal kickboxer and opened a women-focused kickboxing gym. The “Biggest Loser” session is a special set of classes that lasts for 12 weeks, and you meet with the same class once a week. You also get some diet counseling, plus weigh-ins every week to keep you accountable. The session costs $250 for unlimited classes during those 3 months, however I got in while there was a sale and paid only $125.
Keep reading for my review and my after picture!
I was skeptical of how a once-a-week class could transform your body as the program claims, but it really works. Being there once a week and being accountable to put the work in will inspire you to go more than one class a week and eat better. The class started with over 20 people and ended with only 13 or so. This class is perfect for the workout newbie. If you are new to exercising and you only go to this class once a week, you will see some changes. If you exercise regularly, you would probably need to go more than once a week.
The workouts always varied but most of the time we’d spend about half the class on kickboxing drills and half on high intensity strength stuff – like mountain climbers, situps, etc. Then other days we might be doing weights & cardio drills and very little kickboxing. They made sure to work everything.
The diet & nutritional advice was hit or miss. The hand book she has gives you the usual reliable advice about eating low fat, whole grains, more vegetables, etc. But the things she said in class were just… meh. One week she told us to do this “green tea cleanse” where for 3, you were only supposed to drink green tea after 3pm – no food. Another week, she told us to do 3 days of a “chicken & apple” diet. For breakfast, lunch, and dinner you eat only 3 oz of chicken & 1 apple. So total, 9 oz chicken and 3 apples. Oh and you are only allowed 16 oz of water that entire day. I that kind of advice fucks people up, whether you are completely new to nutrition information or whether you’re a fitness buff. I did not do it. Luckily, after about the first month that type of stuff stopped.
The weekly weigh-ins and monthly measurements were a blessing and a curse. Yes, it puts a “good” amount of pressure of you to stick to your goals. On the other hand, I get anxiety easily and was always stressed out on weigh in day. Christina never made me feel bad about stepping on the class though. The top 3 “losers” in the class lost 12-14% of their starting weight!
So how did I do?
- Total pounds lost: 4. At my lowest, I was at -6. I know it kinda looks pathetic that I lost 4 lbs in 12 weeks but I’ll take every scrap. Honestly, I didn’t put enough effort (or any) into the nutrition and eating component. That’s definitely something I have to work on. However…
- Lost 1 inch from my thigh
- Lost 2.5 inches from “abs” – this is the bra band area
- Lost 1 inch from waist (*Christina’s measurements claim 2 inches. According to my own measurements, I lost 1)
- Lost 1.5 inches from hips
- Lost .5 inch from bicep
I don’t know if I mentioned this before, but I am an obsessive knitter and I sometimes sew my own clothes. This means that I keep measurements of my body so I know that these changes are accurate. Christina’s measurements matched up with my own pretty well
Because the workouts forced me to use muscles that I never used before, I ended up losing weight from some strange places. The most noticeable was from what she calls the “abs” but is the area just under my bust, where my bra band would be. To put it bluntly, I lost back fat! That blubbery stuff hanging out of the back of my bra tightened right up from all of the punching and twisting. My bra band size went from 36 to 34! That’s just crazy. 34 just sounds so… little! I don’t think I went down in a shirt size, but my existing shirts just hang a little bit looser. My waist & thighs feel tighter. A few months ago, I bought some underwear that were actually too small and they were sitting in my drawer. Last night I tried them on & they fit! I haven’t bought new pants since I started this, so I’m curious to know if I lost enough to go down a pant size.
And now the big reveal. I didn’t take a Before picture because shit, I don’t want to look at my before. No one wants to look at their before! Here I am looking silly, sweaty, and slim after the final workout:
He’s about to get a piece of my upper cut
Mid-laugh because taking pictures in the gym is embarrassing
I became interested in kickboxing a year ago, and this was the third kickboxing program I’ve tried. While they all had their pros and cons, it’s the one that works best for me. Other classes were more like cardio classes with a touch of kickboxing influence. However, this gym is legit. It’s more kickboxing first, cardio & strength second. The gym is not fancy – it sits in between a scrap metal yard and a tow yard I think, and it’s not for wimps. There are people here of all ages, sizes and abilities and people come here to DO WORK, not to stand around looking cute.
There is another session starting up and I would love to sign up again because I like the atmosphere but I can’t justify the cost again ($250). I bought a punch card of classes for now to see how often I’ll go.
If you live in Rhode Island, try a class at Rondeau’s kickboxing and maybe I’ll see you around. Rondeau’s often has Groupon and discount deals for first-timers.
P.S. Men can join if they have a female referral.