How Zumba Has Changed Me

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I must admit that there were several times in the past that I was told how Zumba was going to change me but I just brushed the thought of it off thinking that there was no way I was going to try to find my rhythm again in my 40’s.

In high school, I was a cheerleader and I was good at learning the routines.  Picked them up rather quickly.  I was also very limber and could do the splits jumping into mid air and landing on a hard surface with ease.  If I tried that now, I am quite certain I would break my hoo-ha pelvic bone.

When I got older I went to the country bars and did the line dancing and kept up pretty well, even being 3 4 ok 5 sheets to the wind.  I also shook my booty in the night clubs and have always considered myself capable of maintaining a beat.

But as we get older, and for me, lazier, our bodies don’t move in our 40’s like they did in our teens and 20’s.  Especially when I had put on 50 pounds after having 3 babies.  I had my last baby almost 4 years ago and I am still carrying around 24 of those 50 pounds.

My friend and workout partner, Heather, kept telling me about these Zumba classes and how we should start going to them.  So finally, after much convincing, I went and wrote about my first experience here.

Now, I am happy to say that it has become somewhat of an addiction for me.  So much so that I am quite certain my husband thinks I have a boyfriend named Zumba.

The energy of the ladies who teach the particular classes I go to, is nothing short of AMAZING.  And by the end you’re sweating, huffing, puffing, cussing and feeling like your entire body has suddenly turned into a substance resembling that of jello.  But it’s well worth it.

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I will admit that the first few weeks were hard for me to keep up.  I was really sore and worked muscles that I didn’t even know existed.  I would watch the clock hoping for the hour to hurry up and be over.  And when the “cool down” song came on, I sighed a breath of relief and passed out on the floor.  And then immediately came home and soaked my aching muscles in a hot epsom salt bath.  Yes it really works.

But now, 26 pounds lighter, I find myself not watching the clock and actually having an element of surprise when the “cool down” song starts playing.  I leave feeling accomplished and full of endorphins.  I have actually now found it to be fun.  I never thought I would refer to exercise as fun.

Here are some little facts about Zumba:

  • One class can burn anywhere between 500-1000 calories.
  • I usually check my FitBit before I go into class and then once I am finished and I usually get anywhere between 5,000-7,000 steps per class.

(The above two facts of course are based on how much effort one and myself puts into the hour of class.)

  • The word Zumba comes from a Colombian word meaning ‚Äúto move fast and have fun‚ÄĚ
  • Approximately 10 million people participate in Zumba classes every week.  That’s a lot of people.  Don’t you want to be one of them?  You know you do!
  • Zumba is also highly recommended for the elderly as most moves are done at one’s own pace.  Believe me, you don’t have to be a professional dancer to attend a class.
  • Zumba is considered an interval training type of workout.  It uses music to set paces to fast and slow while also toning certain muscle groups.
  • Most people who attend say that their reason for keeping it up is because it is so FUN!

I can honestly say that Zumba has changed me.  It’s changed my body, my mind, my energy level, my confidence, and the all around balance in my life.  I can’t say enough good things about it.  And let’s face it…it’s so much more fun than walking on a treadmill.

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Reflections From Me

Workout Wednesdays ~ Jan 6, 2016

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I started working out last year around Halloween time.  Was doing great, even made it through Thanksgiving and still managed to get to the gym after the turkey holiday.

Then December rolled in and it was like “Oh fuck it, let’s just eat all these goodies and wrap the scale in a box and put it under the Christmas tree.”

And boy did I eat the goodies.

I mean seriously…I can’t let all that yummy stuff that my friends slaved to make go to waste…right???

Oh and that cheesecake….I freaking love cheeeeeeesecaaaaaake. ¬†It doesn’t even need a topping.

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So January is here now, and so is the scale, and everyone is busy making their new year resolutions and here is just a little list of mine.

I decided to quit drinking. ¬†Pick your chin up off the floor…you read that correctly…no more wine, beer, vodka…nadda! ¬†Except for rare special occasions. ¬†Like for instance if the Denver Broncos make it to the Super Bowl this year and win…that will be cause for celebration and lots of ingesting of booze alcohol wine….whatever I shall feel like consuming that day. ¬†Let’s go BRONCOS!

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But there will be no more bottles of wine opened while making dinner and finished before bedtime. ¬†No more cocktails when I have had a really rough day and the kids have disintegrated my nerves. ¬†And no more ice-cold beers on date nights with the hubby. ¬†However, there will still be date nights…most likely at the local movie theatre where no alcohol is served.

I know it’s only been 5 days…but so far so good. ¬†My husband of course thinks there is no way that I am going to give up wine. ¬†Therefore, now it’s turned into a challenge. ¬†**thinks about the lovely taste of a good red wine embracing her palette**

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Ah yes back to reality…I’ve been challenged.

The gym. ¬†The gym will be somewhere I am going to be visiting daily…on Tuesdays and Thursdays it will be twice a day as I am going to take up a Zumba class with my lovely “let’s hope we don’t die laughing or fall on our faces” partner Heather. ¬†I don’t do well with aerobic classes in the fact that I hate repetition, but I have heard a lot of good stuff about Zumba so I gave it a shot…

There was a lot of hip thrusting…dance moves…and me huffing and puffing watching the clock. ¬†Rhythm is also helpful in a Zumba class as every move is to the beat of music.

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There were also these little two-pound weight shaker objects that when you first pick them up you think “oh this is like nothing”. But after swinging them around in the air for an hour they feel like 50 pound weights. ¬†Or maybe I’m just really out of shape. ¬†I remember going to the clubs in my 20’s and 30’s and dancing my ass off and not skipping a beat or breaking a sweat but that was because there was large amounts of alcohol in my body which we all know gives you the energy of a 2-year-old.

All in all I can honestly say that I really enjoyed the Zumba class and highly recommend anyone that has contemplated going to do so. ¬†The part I mentioned about rhythm, yes…it’s good to have but there were plenty of people who didn’t have any and were still there trying. ¬†One lady was like 70 and she was rocking it.

Time to start choosing the right fuel to put in my body.  I ate nothing but crappy food the entire month of December and drank enough booze to open my own bar.  And my body let me know it.

Even getting back to the gym the extra weight I put on makes it that much harder to work out. ¬†Even 5 pounds…just pick up a 5 pound bag of potatoes and imagine yourself carrying all that extra weight around.

I have designated 2016 as my year to fix me. ¬†When you fix yourself first, then you are a better person for those around you. ¬†I will be posting about my progress every Wednesday so stay tuned…

Have you made any goals for 2016?  Let me know in the comments.

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