Have you ever heard of someone traveling 90 minutes (each way) on a Sunday morning to just be a spectator to an exercise sessions? I have. Welcome to the Hurt Locker. Welcome to Ultimate Hell Fit.

The brain child of the mighty Steven Curnyn, Ultimate Hell Fit is not for the faint hearted. Locations change weekly and have included to date; full water submersion sessions in Harlaw Reservoir (in January none the less) to Sadistic Hill Sprints above the Ski Slopes of Hill End, intermingled with the odd dunk into the waterfall at Flotterstone. These sessions are unlike anything you will have experienced in any gym, in any group fitness session, in fact they are unlike any fitness session you will have experienced. Ever.


Hell Fit is the dirtier, darker, more sadistic cousin to Project Awesome, which Steve is also in charge of up here in Edinburgh. It pushes you to every single limit that you have, and then it pushes you some more. Based around the training  Steve received whilst participating in Ultimate Hell Week, you can expect to bear crawl up hills, crawl through rivers and carry boulders up hills and then carry them down again. You can also expect to perform burpees on demand (or when the grenade goes off) as well as bash out press up after press in sync with the rest of the team. Because that is what makes Hell Fit so special. The team. No one person is better than the other, and regardless of age, sex, or fitness level, Hell Fit caters for all. If you are willing to turn up and perform then you will be welcomed with open arms.


Todays session was at Hill End, with which was where I did my first ever Hell Fit. I was hungover that day, really bad. But I survived. Today was brutal, even worse than the first time. Not because I am less fit. Not because I worked harder (although I did), but because Steve is a master of manipulation. He loves a variable, and he loves to change things, just slightly, so that no one really notices, but so that each and every time we are pushed further out of our comfort zones. And by god it works. Between the hill sprints and planks the underlying feel is that we are all in it together. Team work wins overall, and the best moment I ever saw was when someone waited for another when she was struggling. Normally if we fall behind or are last then we get burpees as punishment (Steve loves a burpee) but actually, more important than being first up the hill or the best sprinting down hill is making sure everyone finishes. And by sticking together that day and encouraging each other up the hill, well, no one was last. Everyone is a Superhero at Hell Fit.

The people we surround ourselves with either raise or lower our standards. They either help us to become the-best-version-of ourselves or encourage us to become lesser versions of ourselves. We become like our friends. No man is great on his own. No woman is great on her own. The people around them help to make them great. We all need people in our lives who raise our standards, remind us of our essential purpose, and challenge us to become the-best-version-of-ourselves.