True to my word, I took my first Jazzercise class yesterday. High five!
Even with all the determination and courage I felt in my last post, I still had to fight off the Evil Fat Girl in my head – and the bitch got louder and louder as payday grew closer. I had to fight off the primal urge to run to the corner and hide on more than one occasion this past week, but thankfully I remembered my new battle plan: run full speed at whatever it is that I’m afraid of. 🙂
I beat down a dozen excuses that the Evil Fat Girl came up with and, before I knew it, Friday was here. I rolled out of bed and signed up online before the Evil Fat Girl could talk me out of it.
Saturday morning came and nervous/anxious Dianne came with it. I hate being the new kid. I hide it well, but when I’m the designated noob with any group of people I’m mentally torturing myself with thoughts like “Oh my God, I’m the biggest person in the room”. Sad, but true.
I sucked it up as best I could and introduced myself to the Jazzercise-y looking woman who was putting up “Jazzercise HERE!” signs outside the building. She was very happy to see me and showed me around the facility. I filled out the typical waiver forms while she set things up. As my class mates filed in and put their gear down, something amazing happened: they all started coming over and welcoming me. What? I…I…holy crap. Nice people? What a relief!!
This is where Jazzercise differs from your average aerobics class in an over-priced gym. I’ve been to many aerobics classes in my day. I’ve walked in, put my gear down, and busied myself with my cell phone or pretending to look for gum in my purse until the music started. Never once was I greeted by anyone…including the instructor. I have received countless sideways glances from perfectly coiffed, bouncy boobed aerobics bimbos who were clearly wondering what the hell I was doing in their aerobics class. I wish I had a dollar for every one of those I’ve ever gotten.
Not so at Jazzercise. I was sincerely and enthusiastically welcomed by several of my class mates. In fact, I never even had time to be fake-busy with my cell phone or that fictitious pack of gum in my purse.
The music started and I turned on my heart rate monitor, silently praying “God, please don’t let me pass out on my first day…or fart loudly during the floor exercises.” Hey, I’m just saying…when I’m nervous, I’ll trip over a hair on the carpet. Embarrassing things just happen to me.
During the floor exercises, I realized I’d forgotten my hand weights. I didn’t say anything, I just followed along from my position in the back of the room. One of my class mates offered to let me borrow her other hand weight. Again, not something I’ve ever seen at any gym I’ve belonged to. In fact, some of you will remember my last unpleasant gym experience. I think my Jazzercise experience has proven to me once and for all that I don’t need to go to a gym to get back in shape.
When class was over, several class mates came to ask me how I liked the class and whether I would be back. Yes, I assured them…I would be back for every class. Never once did I think I was the biggest person in the room. It never occurred to me at all.
It was fun and the music was great. It was just the right blend of dance and aerobics for me – and the icy cold washcloths they passed out halfway through class were sheer Heaven. Heaven!!
My heart rate monitor showed an average of 164 beats per minute with a high of 184 beats per minute. That’s quite awesome. Actually, that’s bordering on ninja awesome.
I don’t know why I’m so shocked when I encounter nice people, but I am. I’ve lived in Texas for 5 years, you’d think I’d be a little more used to it. Growing up in California took its toll in some interesting ways, I guess.
I’m so glad I went. I’m so glad I looked fear in the face and told it to piss off. This was another important step in teaching myself that dancing again doesn’t mean I’ll ever have to go back to the life I had as a dancer. Those days are gone for good…and I have the power to build much stronger, more positive memories now.
So…in closing, I’d like to ask what you’re doing for exercise. Are you doing it…or are you just thinking about it? Is there something keeping you from it? My something is fear…fear of going back to the negative, manipulative environment I grew up in as a dancer. What is it for you? And what is your plan of attack?
I’m all ears…