Finding the Skinny Bitch Within | My Journey Through Strength Training and Fat Loss at Performance 360

November 14, 2012

By Heather Reineke | Field Reporter

As a retired athlete (I still hold on tightly to my tri-sport varsity days of yesteryear), I had let myself fall down the slippery slope to sloth-dom where my evenings consisted of couch-sitting while spooning peanut butter flavored Yogurt on the Rocks into my face hole.  In an effort to thwart the digression, I gave the whole yogi thing a try and actually really enjoyed it, but my muscles were still craving more and I was feeling athletically unfulfilled.  So began my pilgrimage to find an institution that could help push the skinny bitch out of from underneath the winter layers I had packed on during my exercise hibernation. Here's the tale of my journey in search of that skinny bitch and how it landed me in what I deem San Diego's ultimate training gym: Performance 360 in Mission Beach.

In my search, I had been hearing a lot about crossfit, as it's ubiquitous in San Diego, so I thought maybe I'd give it a try.  I purchased a Groupon for a crossfit gym in PB, and then, a day later, I got buyer's remorse and cancelled it.  Realizing that I didn't want to go to a turbo gym where my pupils morph into dollar signs, I made the decision to check out a place that was more aligned with my personality and workout needs - meaning a balance of intensity and chillness, and toning rather than body building.  So, after several close friends told me about Performance 360 and their High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) approach, I signed up for a one week free trial and started getting my butt kicked by Bryan Pritz in the Outdoor Maximus Bootcamps.  Did I mention this occurs beside the bay so you can enjoy the beautiful view while scorching fat?  Before I knew it, the week turned into a membership and five months flew by.  I was feeling stronger and faster...and getting quite a few compliments on the perkiness of my derriere.

Inside P360
Then October rolled around and P360 launched a 30 Day Challenge.  You could choose to enter into the fat loss challenge, the strength increase challenge, or both.  Being a relatively competitive people, my fiance and I decided we were going to go all out, not to mention, I secretly decided I needed to do everything in my power to ensure I crushed his results.  It started off with finding our baselines so we could measure improvement.  At 5'7" I weighed in at 142 with a dead-lift of 95lbs (3x) and just enough strength to throw 65lbs (3x) of raw metal and rubber above my head in the form of a barbell push press.  The fiance, not going for weight loss, knocked out a 225lbs deadlift and threw up a 95lbs barbell push press for three reps each.

Over the 30 days, I attended an average of 5 classes per week for about 25 minutes per class.  I transitioned mostly to indoor daily challenges which are more strength-focused than the outdoor classes.  I also committed to the eating plan which I think was the real catalyst behind my results.  I destroyed some lean and clean meats, tried to keep to less than 50g of carbs per day, and consumed healthy fats as well as my fair share of protein shakes.

The fiance actually needed to gain weight, so he was trying to carb and calorie up so he didn't waste away, but was still eating clean.  Throughout the month, P360 owner Dave Thomas' nutrition guide (P360N) became our food bible and the slow cooker became our ceramic chalice, allowing us to cook meals on the weekend to last through the week.  P360N detailed what we should and shouldn't eat, enlightened our minds to the science behind gaining and losing weight, and gave us some kick ass recipes that made it so much easier to stick to the prescribed plan.  Oh, and I have to mention, as someone that is gluten-free out of necessity, the almond meal chocolate chip cookies are incredible and only take 15 minutes to bake!

By the end of the challenge, I dropped 5 pounds to 137, deadlifted 185lbs for three reps, and hoisted 85# of barbell/weights above my head for three reps.  The fiance deadlifted 255lbs for three reps, and push-pressed 105lbs for three reps.  Both of us are more tone, have much flatter stomachs, and even see first signs of abs poking through.  And though my improvement clearly crushed the fiance's, I'd like to think his newly toned body is also a win for me!  Not too bad for 25 minutes, 5 times a week.

In order to celebrate such triumphs, and in true P360 fashion, the owners are organizing a bar crawl in Pacific Beach.  I must sheepishly admit, the fiance and I actually changed the date of our engagement photos just so we could attend.  I look forward to boozing with my fellow challengers, getting to know them better on a level that doesn't include sweating or grunting, and then getting back in the gym to help the females reign victoriously in the Battle of the Sexes challenge in December.

So, if you've ever found yourself where I was six months ago and if results, a community, classes that you practically feel like you have personal trainer, only 25 minutes out of your day, and social events is what you're looking for, then check out P360's one week free trial.  You won't be disappointed.

P360 is located at 1010 Santa Clara Place in Mission Beach.  For more information, call (619) 800-2774  or visit Performance 360 online at  For real time updates from P360, be sure to follow on Facebook and Twitter.