Thursday, April 11, 2013

An intro to pilates class


Let’s talk about fitness.  All New Year’s Resolutions aside, fitness is cool but group fitness classes are cooler.  What better way to get in shape than move in synchronous motions with a room full of sweating strangers? Hey no judgment here. Once you get over the initial shell shock of watching yourself jump around in full length mirrors, playing follow the leader with a fitness instructor is actually pretty alright.
After Grouponing a few gym deals, I found myself in a pilates studio with an ex-dancer instructor.  Perfect, just the right time for me to start honing the inner Beyoncé, I thought.
 “Ready? Let’s start with HIP CIRCLES two, three, four...”
Without even hesitating, my fellow patrons and I all quickly started moving our hips like the instructor. I glanced around the room to find everyone’s serious faces, thrusting their hips like business as usual. Man, group fitness classes are an interesting phenomenon.
Call me crazy Carly Rae, but the only time I’ve ever seen that many people gyrating their hips was probably in an SNL skit. What’s not acceptable in broad daylight is apparently fair game in the fitness room. No one questions what’s going on; everyone just does it.
As weird as it seems, I felt comfortable in this nonjudgmental atmosphere. And as awkward as it was, there was an unstated, mutual agreement that we were all in this together. You don’t want to lose the beat or fall behind, so onward with the hip circles you go.
^image cred to Courtney Vlaming and her Courtoons.
Luckily the class didn’t have any serious regulars so that took some external pressure off. You know those ladies—usually a few years older, with a couple kids under their belt but you can’t tell because they have Lululemon spandex suctioned to their toned muscle bods? Yea, talk about an intimidation factor.
After some time with my fellow newcomers, I started feeling really suave with this dancey warm-up.
“OH YEA CHECK ME OUT I GOT IT!” I declared to no one but myself.
And then I caught a glimpse in the mirror. YIKES my moves definitely did not look as cute as the dancer4life leading the class. Woo at least no one I knew could see me in this moment. 
That’s what’s really the most great about group fitness classes.  You do all these weird moves that are not cool at the time but so cool after when you have the most toned trapezius at the club and the best heart rate at the doc. And even if you don’t, at least you tried.
Through the whole ordeal, you learn what it means to be humble as you take a step toward your fitness goals synchronously with strangers. All humility aside, you start feeling better about your body and health, one class at a time.
And hip circles two, three, four…

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