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The elephant in a tutu

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Today was one of those days. My body (or was it my mind?) was telling me the LAST thing it wanted to do was go to the gym. I only for a fleeting moment thought about NOT going. I just didn't know what I wanted to do. I've been working out pretty hard for 9 days straight (some days running 3 miles then doing 3 miles on the elliptical later that same day). I'm a little sore from Zumba +weights yesterday. But I still wanted to go do SOMETHING today.

I received an e-mail from my friend Chrystal, whom I have never met in person but seems to be one of my long lost twins (although she is way hotter than I am), and she made me feel like I wasn't alone.

Of course, I get down to the gym locker room, and in my true graceful ways, ripped the entire back of my sock off. Whoops. Strapped on my tennis shoes anyway and started up the stairs to the gym to hop on the elliptical. As I was walking up the stairs, I received a message from one of the trainers at the gym telling me she would love to see me in her Ballet Body class. Yeah, um, I weigh 230 something pounds...not a Ballet Body by any stretch of the imagination.

So, of course, I did it anyway. On the plus side, it's a barefoot class, so the ripped sock didn't matter. :)

I went into the class, in the front row, with several people from my department (did I mention I was in class at the gym AT WORK?). I was by far the biggest person in the class.

As it started, I realized it was a lot like yoga and was stretching out some of those sore muscles. Of course, that was the warm-up.

The "allegro" (yeah, that means fast if you don't know) part was much trickier (read: I had to fight hard to not fall down) and boy did I not realize how hard your shoulders work when trying to hold your arms out to your side while doing ballet (or, whatever it was I was doing). Nor did I realize that a plie (plee-AY) is really just a fancy way of saying "squat while sucking in your stomach and holding your upper body straight, all while your quads scream at you".

I also didn't realize I would sweat so much (aka, pour liquid awesome all over the gym floor) "just" doing ballet. I was painfully aware that I looked like one of those cartoons where there's an elephant or a hippo dancing in a ballet tutu (although my tutu was in fact black capri spandex pants).

Here's the thing...I enjoyed it. I had fun, and got a pretty darn good workout out of it. I tried something new. For the second time this week.

On Monday, I tried a spinning class, which I had always shied away from for who knows what reason. I enjoyed that too, and burned some SERIOUS calories (775 in 40 minutes) and poured way more liquid awesome than I was expecting. I heeded warnings to sit a certain way to not injure my "lady parts" and did the best I could. (No, I cannot stand and ride a bike simultaneously...not that talented or strong yet.)

The point is...I've been working out on a regular basis for a few months now. I'm pretty strong, considering how heavy I am, but I usually do pretty much the same things, even though I do vary when I do them and how hard I work. I needed to try something new. Different. Outside of my comfort zone. I needed to work different muscles, in different ways.

I found my comfort zone. Then I left it. Now you go do it too.

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