When I was younger, I was what you might call an ‘athlete’. I wasn’t a good athlete, by any means. But I did lots of sports, even though I wasn’t particularly talented at any of them. I didn’t care much though. It was fun, and my friends did the same sports I did and so being the best, or even good, just wasn’t a source of stress. (True story – my high school boyfriend said I ran like a T-rex with my lil’ arms. So picture that while you read this, if you want…)
When I got into high school I sort of came into my own as a runner – even though I’d joined the cross country team when I was 11, it wasn’t until I was about 14 that I actually became legitimately good at it and found my niche. And that opened up a whole new world of fun, this “being good” at something – a sport, even! So I carried on running, and even through college/university that was my main source of fitness. Training for and running 5ks and a few half-marathons….good times.
But I don’t know if you know, but I finished school a long time ago and I’m creeping into my thirties and my health needs have changed as I’ve gotten older, meaning straight cardio just isn’t enough. What about my bones?! What about muscle mass?! So in the years in between uni and now I’ve fallen back on a variety of exercise routines to stay fit. Running, sure. But also boxing, and HIIT, Zumba, Jillian Michaels dvds, Fitness Blender workouts on YouTube, elliptical machines and rowing machines and weight training, whatever sounds good, really. I like it all, and I like to switch it up, because doing one thing all the time is neither fun nor effective. Recently, I was invited to come check out Fitness First in Brighton and while I have spent the better part of the past 5 years staying out of the gym in favor of other modes of exercise, I took them up on their offer and headed to a class that I’d never been to before. In this case, it was Body Pump. They even threw in a personal training session after to sweeten the deal (um, pro tip, don’t do personal training after you’ve already been to a pretty intense hour long class).
That was about a month ago. Since then, I’ve just kept going back of my own accord – I’ve gone to a few spin classes, and the thing that keeps me coming back is that damn Body Pump class. It’s amazing! It’s an hour long strength-training class and I’ve done it with three different teachers now (check out Lou, Brighton friends, her classes are super great). I’m obsessed, for now. And I’ve found out that spinning is…okay? I thought it would be different than what it’s turned out to be, just going off of how people rave about it! I’m not crazy about it, but it’s a completely fine workout – definitely hard, and I get sweaty, which is really all that counts. And there are others that I haven’t tried yet, but plan on giving a go.
I think the thing I want most right now in new fitness ventures is just to know that if I show up, I’ll get a great workout. I’ve also found that working for myself means I need to put more effort into leaving the house, being active, and seeing people because I spend a lot of time alone, and a lot of time sitting, hunched over a laptop. And it looks like going to classes at Fitness First are really suiting me for all of this, and it’s a worthy expense at this point in my life. Just get there and change my clothes and do whatever someone else tells me to while zoning out and getting swole? Yes.