I awoke Tuesday morning, suffering from a case of deja vu:
Why is there no food in my house??
Okay. Fine. One more OIAJ day, since I had leftover oatmeal from Monday.
In the mix: Steel Cut Oats w/banana & ChiaFresh, three halved strawberries and a sprinkling of Scharffenberger cacao nibs. Nutella jar full of win.
After breakfast, I pretty much did nothing for several hours. I knew I should get up, exercise and do some chores, but I definitely had a case of the blahs. Sometimes I feel guilty about not accomplishing anything on my days off, but I have to remind myself that tons of people do nothing on Saturday and Sunday. Tuesday and Wednesday are my weekend, and if I’m burned out from my work week, there ain’t no shame in vegging.
After some guilt, I decided that I would allow myself to wallow for most of the day, as long as I got up and did something active for at least an hour. I thought about what it would be and then I decided. While Monday wasn’t the right time for it, Tuesday was. I was going back to the gym.
For a class. A Zumba class.
I haven’t done very many group exercise courses at the gym. It was one of my goals in 2008 to incorporate them into my routines, but other than Cardio Kick, I never really got myself to show up. I can’t help it. Group exercise intimidates the heck out of me. I’m not coordinated in any sense of the word and I have a hard time getting the moves down. This is why I prefer to exercise on my own. I run alone so I don’t have to feel bad if I’m not as good as my running partner. I work out at the gym alone so that I don’t have to feel competitive or embarrassed. Group exercise definitely is outside of my comfort zone.
On the other hand, group exercise, when I can make myself attend, can be really fun. I had a pretty steady ritual with Cardio Kick for a few months in 2009. I was never any good at it, but the time went by quickly and it certainly kicked my butt when I stepped up the moves with jumps and higher kicks. With this idea in mind, I made myself go to Zumba. I told myself, while you may be a total spazz, you will at least be getting exercise and who knows, you might even have fun.
Aside from watching a few youtube videos of gym based Zumba classes from some gym on the east coast, I really had no idea what to expect from a Zumba class. I really am not a research, study, make detailed plans kind of exerciser. I mean, sure, with running I’ve read up some…as I have with strength training (not that I strength train….but, you know, I’ve read about it…). When it comes to classes, however, I might just look at an example of what a class might look like, and then decide if I think it would be fun. I don’t expect group exercise classes to burn tons of calories…I just assume that it’s something to get me off my butt for an hour. No matter what, that can’t be a bad thing!
My Zumba class was taught by this really energetic guy. I guess there are a lot of regulars in the class, as when he came in, he started greeting people by name and explaining to them that he had a new routine to try out. He also giggled and showed the class that he had notecards, explaining that working out a new routine makes him a little nervous and he wanted to be sure he didn’t mess it up. I thought that was kind of cute and endearing.
We started off with some warm ups, with arm movements and hip swaying. I must admit, I felt a little awkward. I have no dancing skills, whatsoever. I don’t really ever….shake….anything. At least not intentionally. I got over the weirdness pretty fast though, as everyone just seemed to be having fun. We moved from the warm up into several numbers….some hip hop…some more pop….some traditional. The teacher showed us each of the moves, broken down slowly, several times before we took things at tempo. I was really appreciative of the fact that this was a new routine week, as everyone needed a few extra tries before moving up to tempo. After every song, the class would clap and we would receive praise for our efforts. That was cool. I like praise. My ego is fragile, you know.
All in all, it was a fun way to kill an hour. I never really got my heart rate up too high, but I attribute some of that to the fact that I was still struggling with the moves a little bit. I think I would do it again. It was a fun, comfortable environment with everyone moving at their own level. I need to be able to move at my own level. Seriously. Afterwards, I debated running upstairs and trying to get in on that Intro to Yoga class that I always mean to attend. Problem was that I wasn’t sure if it had started yet, and I didn’t want to walk in all sweaty to a class that was already getting their zen on. Maybe next week.
Afterwards, I did this:
In the mix (wow..two mixes, one post. can you dig it?): Mostly tart froyo with a dab of cake batter, raspberries, mint chocolate cookies, a couple of hunks of cheesecake and crushed almond rocca.
I actually had no intention of having this much…but the yogurt and topping dispensers sort of exploded into my cup. Oh well. Sorry for the unattractive picture, but I was in a mall, armed only with my iPhone. Plus, DIY froyo just typically isn’t all that pretty.
It tastes good though.
I meant to post this last night, but I was still feeling kind off. I had no interest in the internet so I opted for watching The Biggest Loser, Parenthood and a ton of episodes of Glee from Season 1. It may’ve not been a productive evening, but it made me happy.
Feelings on group exercise — yay or nay?