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Sunday, July 8, 2012

To Zumba or not to Zumba

As a group fitness instructor, I'm constantly telling my class participants to change up their workouts, make sure they are getting both cardio and strength training into their routines.  If they primarily just take group fitness classes, and do little else, then I urge them to try new instructors, different classes and be "open" to change.  Well, here is the deal.........I don't always practice what I preach.  WHAT?  I know, what sort of a role model am I anyway?  That said, I stepped out of my comfort zone today and went to my friends Zumba class.  Now, you may be thinking that this isn't really that big of a deal, right?  Well, let me tell you that it kind of IS a big deal.  I'm a kick boxing, boot camp, weight lifting kind of girl.  I run, do yoga, circuit training, tabatas, and spin occasionally.  I have a pretty good mixture of workouts, constantly creating muscle confusion, but I never really step out of my comfort zone.  If you give me a dumb bell, I feel comfortable and in charge.  But hip hop dance, Cha Cha, Mambo, Sangria (wait, that's a drink....)  I can't do ANY of that.  I mean I kind of CAN, but I don't look very coordinated.  Not like those sexy little numbers in the Zumba infomercials.  This reminds me of a picture I recently saw on Pinterest.

Here's the thing, I don't even FEEL like that hot number on the left.  I felt a little ridiculous at first.  My hips were going up, when they should have been going down and what the hell is a shimmy anyway??  And yet, about 15 minutes in, I really started to have fun!  The instructor and my new friend, Leyla, is phenomenal.  She's a belly dancer here in town, and dances with swords and big snakes, really big snakes.  That in itself, just makes her cool.  She taught class in a nontraditional Zumba manner which I liked.  She combined a mixture of Latin moves, with hip hop, belly dancing, and even swing at the end!  Of course, I made our other friend, Kat, come with me so that I didn't have to go through the class alone (it's always more fun to make an ass out of yourself with friends).  Kat, is also a belly dancer, therefore, she spent a good amount of time helping me with the moves, or just laughing together.  And in that 60 minutes on a Sunday afternoon, I worked up a great sweat, burned about 300 calories and just got to be silly and relax a bit with friends, and not take life too seriously.  I mean, isn't that what it's all about anyway?  Shouldn't we try to make the most out of every day and every experience? Shouldn't we try new things?  Of course we should!!

All that said, I will continue to hit an occasional dance class here and there.  I mean, why not?  But I also know that when it comes to fitness and my own personal goals what works best for me to get my desired results.  That's what I urge everyone who is on a fitness journey of their own, to do.  Not everyone is a runner, spinner, kick boxer, weight lifter....etc.  You need to find your OWN fitness.

So, thank you Leyla for taking me out of my comfort zone a bit.  Thank you Kat for trying to teach me how to "shimmy."  And I apologize in advance for all of the burpees I'll have YOU do on Tuesday :)