“You’ve Gotta Be Xena…”

I’ve never been one to really enjoy exercise. I never get that runner’s high, that love from the burn of pushing through reps or the immediate gratification from an hour of racquetball. I’ve never been much of an athlete and have always felt extremely self-conscious while exercising. Now… get ready for this…. Last night I spent an hour working my butt off and I couldn’t stop… wait for it…. I couldn’t stop smiling!!

I’ve found a workout I actually like that also makes me feel like I’m accomplishing something! Enter: Zumba!!

I started going to Zumba with friends at the YMCA in downtown Rockford. It has been a blast. For those of you who don’t know, Zumba is a workout that combines various forms of Latin dance into an hour of (exhausting) cardio fun. As I walked into the class the first day, I was a bit intimated. I had no idea what was going on and was a bit concerned I would look absolutely idiotic. As the music flipped on, I quickly started following the instructor’s moves and immediately cracked up laughing. This could not be fun. Exercise is not supposed to be fun. I cannot be enjoying this so much…. But, alas, I was.

Now, the first mistake you can make in Zumba is to care what other people think of you while you’re Zumba-ing. You’ve got to let your worries that you’ll look like an idiot go as soon as you walk through the door because guess what? Most people do look absolutely ridiculous. There are some in the class who rock every single move. Most of us, however, look hilarious. But the best part? No one cares! I now have decided to never look into the mirror while I dance because I’ll realize I don’t look anything like the girl in my head who is jamming out to the Zumba beat. That girl in my head rocks so I decided to pretend I’m her.

Zumba involves a lot of crazy moves – fast steps, crazy butt shakes and a lot of jumping. Yesterday, when leaving the Y, my three friends and I couldn’t stop laughing and talking about all the hilarious moves we had just done. My one friend pointed out, “you’ve gotta be Xena…” which I thought was clever. So, now I’ve decided that when I show up at Zumba, I’m going by the name Xena… well, at least in my head.

Zumba brings out more than just great cardio – it brings out great smiles and great friendships. That’s when you know exercise is really paying off – when you can’t wait to go the next class because it’s just so darn fun. My life is stressful and my job can be difficult at times but now I’ve found a great outlet that, for at least an hour, I can forget about it all and just have fun.

Come along to the next class if you like! Not sure if you want to become a member of the Y? I’ve got three guest passes that I’m willing to share. Come out and try Zumba! If nothing else, you’ll get a great chance to crack up laughing at my ridiculous dance moves. 🙂

-Caitlin

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~ by caitlinludwig on October 26, 2010.

2 Responses to ““You’ve Gotta Be Xena…””

  1. At work, a Zumba class just started on Mondays/Wednesdays. I’d given it a moment’s consideration, but I’m busy on Wednesdays and busy on Mondays through Nov. 8th. Bleh. But I may try it some other time it is offered…

  2. You could not have described the Zumba experience better!! I know I’ve only done it twice so far, but after each class, I have felt absolutely euphoric! I hate exercising, too, because it makes me feel completely out of my element (my days of being a tomboy passed looooong ago), but when I’m Zumba-ing, I feel downright sassy! Thanks for being my supportive work-out buddy. I wouldn’t have this fantastic stress relief without you and Anthea!

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