10 Years and Our Story

best gym in langley

We just received word that BEFIT has once again been voted the best gym in Langley.

That’s 10 years in a row folks. Thank you for being here and supporting us. We will continue to work alongside you everyday to improve with every facet of our service.

So it being 10 years of winning the Best gym in Langley has got me pretty nostalgic today and I know there are quite a few new faces in our gym and community these days so I thought I’d give you a little timeline of our story (videos included).

That being said, 3-2-1 go!!!

August 2009 – I come up for the idea of an indoor bootcamp while learning about fitness marketing. At the time, I was a personal trainer and my plan was to become a better marketer to get more clients so that I could have more experience before going for my masters degree in exercise science in the southern USA (where the idea was to eventually become a strength and conditioning coach for a college or pro sports team).

Everything changed for me that day. I couldn’t see it failing! I could visualize the path to success! And although that path has changed a bit since that day (as back then I wanted 10 bootcamps in 10 different locations), now I’m a big advocate of less is more and love being in the gym everyday with the same members working towards their goals.

So the number 1 rule of marketing is you need a competitive advantage against your competition. Back then, everyone only did outdoor bootcamps, so I figured if we had an indoor bootcamp with more equipment it would be a no brainer for anyone looking to start training in a group environment and improve their fitness!

I spend the next few months making mistakes and getting ready for the grand opening. I’m learning everything I can about SEO, marketing, building websites. I start training a group of ladies for free in a townhouse complex basement in exchange for testimonials and the creation of the original Bootcamp Effect logo and marketing materials. That logo is still on the wall in the gym today!

langley bootcamp




January 4th, 2010 – The official first day of business (renting out Xtreme All star cheerleading). No one shows up the first day. No one showed up the first week other than my friend Matt (the very first All Star of the month). It would have been easy to quit then…

February 28th, 2010 – I sprain my ankle celebrating Canada’s gold medal downtown during the 2010 Olympics. I can’t walk, can’t even crutch due to the amount of swelling and pressure when the foot wasn’t elevated. I’m in an aircast for 8 weeks. For the next 2 weeks, I’ll be forever grateful to my brother Shaun for coming with me to those sessions and demoing exercises while I sat in a chair and coached. I could have easily quit then, but didn’t.

March 7th, 2010 – I post this video to youtube for marketing The Bootcamp Effect. Humble beginnings…

May 2010 – Karen Lougheed becomes a member at The Bootcamp Effect. She becomes an administrative assistant in 2011, a trainer in 2013, the manager of the gym for a number of years and has helped me troubleshoot every hard decision pretty much since then. We now own LVFIT together. I’m forever grateful you came into my life. Plus I can see my style has improved over the years… Thank you for being you Karen!

June 2010 – We run the first 12 week biggest winner challenge and begin running evening sessions for the first time! 7:30pm Tuesday, Thursday, and 10am Saturday in the field at Simonds Elementary.

During this time, I consider quitting and moving to England as we really didn’t have that many members and things weren’t taking off like I thought they would. My father, who let me quit at so many things as a kid, urged me not to quit, he kept saying, it will pick up in the fall. Don’t quit. Keep going… Thanks Dad.

September 1st, 2010 – We move from Xtreme All Star Cheerleading in Langley to Champion Cheerleading in White Rock and Newlands in Langley. We try branching out with the 2 different locations in 2 different cities but we realized everyone was just driving out from Langley for the extra sessions in White Rock, so we move everything to Newlands.

Getting the location in Newlands was a pivotal time for us at it literally saves this business with winter coming and us needing an indoor location in the evenings. This is the break we needed!

I’m grateful to Leon (my old baseball and hockey coach and manager at Newlands at the time) for renting that space to me. This location also gives us trx, boxing bags, and a more legitimate gym approach to our training.

January 2011 – Here’s how it looked then when we had Shaw TV come in and do a promo. More humble beginnings with our 9:30am crew at the time.

We begin training at H.D. Stafford sometime during this period giving us 2 additional evening times on Monday and Wednesday at 6:30pm.

Things are going well now and we continue training at Newlands, Stafford and at McLeod park the odd time for Saturday workouts like the Hangover (300m around the track, up and down all the stairs, 20 foot bear crawl and 10 pushups) x 4 rounds for time followed by Ultimate Frisbee. At that point in time, we named all these workouts after movies, oh nostalgia!

We’re training at Newlands now with up to 24 person sessions on 12 different stations circuit style and I’m screaming over these guys playing squash while music is blaring on our little boom box. I’m now paying rent to a bunch of places and like, for a little bit more, we can have our own space and more timeslots… So I do what I do, and research the shit out of commercial real estate in Langley finding the best building in the best location for the best rate.

August 2011 – We move into our own gym! 20530 Langley Bypass Unit 103 – just 5 doors down from where we currently are! I’m told a number of years later that the president of the landlord’s company didn’t want to rent the space out to us because gyms are a high risk use that go out of business, but the vice president who I was dealing with fought for me based on my business plan and organization. I can’t even think where we’d be if we didn’t get that space! So thank you Colin!

February 8, 2012 – Here’s what the gym looked like in those days. I remember not being able to sleep at night thinking that the space was too small even though I diagramed everything out 5 different ways with every piece of equipment and flow of people in that space…

August 2012 – We add more times. The energy is better and somehow we win the Langley Advance’s Best of the Best for Best Gym in Langley. Such an amazing accomplishment for such a small gym and perhaps even more impressive than winning it for the next 10 years!

September 2012 – I travel to London, England to learn from one of the best trainers in the world at the time and become a kinetic chain specialist. Fun fact, I was born in England and this is the only time I’ve ever been back.

October 2012 – Even though we were in a 3 year lease in Unit 103, we’ve outgrown it in just 1 year! Luckily, the landlord had another space in the corner that was bigger and thought would be perfect for us with the additional outdoor area in the back. So we make the move to Unit 108 adding a turf to our gym for the first time (super cool moment)! If this space wasn’t available, this would have impacted the trajectory and speed that The Bootcamp Effect was growing at the time. I’m thankful that we were able to move then. Isn’t timing everything!

February 2014 – We’re busting at the seems in our new location again! Luckily our next door neighbour in Unit 109 is moving out so we decide to take on the additional space. Back then I agonized over this decision… Today it seems like such a no brainer. The problems of today will be nothing tomorrow… This expansion now gives us childminding (which was short lived), because we also needed that space for the workouts (this was located where the kettlebells are today).

June 2014 – A 14 year old Rachel Mcleod joins the gym as one of our youngest members ever. 7 years later she becomes a coach here!

August 11, 2014 – Here’s what the gym looked like these days. I had edited the first 2 videos, but this time, I’ve enlisted the help of our former admin Jon Johnson to shoot and edit it with me. By far the best video we’ve done to date which really captured the energy and spirit that the gym had during those days. If you’re reading this, hope you’re doing well Jon!

We continue to fine tune and move things around in the gym for years. But looking back on it, this just feels like this was time when once again the problems seem smaller than they actually were. In this video from 7 years ago, you might see a few familiar faces that are still here in the gym today! Thank you for being those stalwarts in our community!!! We appreciate you!

October 2015 – Joe Harper joins the team as a coach!

August 2016 – Chantal Valk joins the team as a coach!

June 2017 – I felt our name didn’t depict the level of training, service, and experience our members received, so we rebranded to BEFIT. (Keeping our Bootcamp Effect roots in the letters BE while incorporating the circular BE logo that we created in 2013.

February 2018 – Irvin Sandhu joins the team as a coach!

March 2019 – Emily Murphy joins the team for a coach, leaves for a bit then comes back as the gym’s assistant manager!

August 2019 – We make a new video for the gym to represent the new name, and the evolution of the service with a professional look.

March 18th 2020
– The gym is forced to close for 2.5 months due to Covid-19. Suffice to say, a lot of people had to leave. We are grateful for those who wanted to continue working on their health and fitness so we run outdoor bootcamps, zoom workouts, program individualized personal training workouts via true coach (which was tough), and give out almost every piece of equipment in the gym. In May of 2020 we lose 40% of our members and drop to a membership number we haven’t seen in 7 years.

June 1st, 2020 – We are able to reopen but with social distancing mandates in place. We were going to reopen with just 11 spots in each timeslot with everyone having their own trx, rower, bike, etc. We get mass people explaining that’s not enough spots and wanting to cancel their memberships, so the night before I come up with the idea to maximize the gym’s equipment creating 2 unique workout train in place experiences called STRENGTH and SWEAT. Necessity breeds innovation. I appreciate the push guys. STRENGTH and SWEAT are the best iterations of all the different things we’ve done over the years.

Here’s a quick recap in chronological order:

  • Different workout everyday – what we did in the very beginning for a year and half
  • Repeating the workouts for the month like we do today, but just with 1 workout with no progressions or regressions
  • 2 levels of training called Bootcamp Effect and Elite aka Befit (we’d have the gym separated by a whiteboard with the different workout written on both sides)
  • Fundamentals, Fitness, Befit levels (what we’ve done for the longest period of time at BEFIT and what we would have most likely continued doing if we weren’t forced to pivot in 2020
  • STRENGTH and SWEAT – giving everyone what they want instead of trying to shove everything into one experience

August 19th, 2021
– We are voted in by you as the best gym and weight loss centre in Langley for the 10th year in a row thanks to your support!

The faces may have changed over the years, but the community and culture is just as amazing as ever!

And a final thanks goes to our current team of coaches for consistently delivering an amazing high energy training experience while assisting everyone on the floor in a personal training manner.

Amidst the adversity that has presented itself, they have persevered and are killing these technically challenging workouts on a daily basis.

I’ll see you in the gym and as always…

Committed to your success,

P.s. Believe in yourself. Just take that first step, it won’t be perfect, but you’ll learn, get better, take another step, make a mistake, take another step, just keep stepping, just keep working and when in doubt be the hardest worker in the room consistently and good things will come to you.

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