Saturday, February 27, 2010
You know those Gym Goddesses who prance on the treadmill, with tight firm little butts and rock-hard abs, and cute little foreheads which barely break a sweat?
Well that's not me.
In fact, I pretty much hate working out. Not just "don't like it", but flat out "hate it". Unless I can trick myself into working out. An example of this would be swimming. It doesn't feel like a work-out, it feels like fun. And I am not hot and sweaty. I am cool and refreshed. Or maybe walking miles and miles all around the city, exploring new neighborhoods. I lose track of how far I've walked, and end up wandering the streets of Manhattan for five miles. Enjoyable to me. Even sometimes the elliptical machine can be fun to me, as long as I have fast music and I feel like I'm dancing. I probably look bananas, but it works for me.
I just booked a trip and got my tourist visa for Brazil in April. Rio de Janeiro. And then I am going to Hawaii with a friend of mine, JoAnn in May. So it is time to get my arse in gear. *Love Weight Watchers, by the way. I've been following the point system and have lost about ten pounds so far. But I haven't really been working out, aside from walking up the 4-5 flights of stairs in my building.
So there is this place in the Meat-Packing district called The Gansevoort Hotel. It is very Sex & The City. In fact, that show has filmed there before. At the Gansevoort is a spa called Exhale. A friend of a friend was having an event there. Cocktails, mini spa treatments, and a "core fusion" class. Sounds fun right?
Here is what the rooftop pool looks like at the Gansevoort. So very Manhattan. So very meat-packing district. So very Sex & The City. So very posh, well-polished crowd.
It was a snowy day and a lot of people were backing out of the event. Here is what it looked like outside my office that afternoon:
It was a near-blizzard outside by the time 6:00 rolled around, and I was close to backing out of the event myself, but my friend talked me into going anyhow. Early, even, so that I could attend the free "core fusion" class at the spa, before the massage treatments and cocktails.
Do you guys know what core fusion is? I thought it might be similar to pilates. I liked pilates. I did it once five years ago. It felt fun and not so scary.
As a side note- I do, however, hate yoga. I went once and I sat in the back of the room and made my grocery list. It was a yoga class called Bikram where they heat up the room. It was so crowded, there were stinky women packed in the room like sardines, and I couldn't concentrate whatsoever. How is one supposed to relax in a tightly packed, 90 degree room with smelly women in "downward facing dog" two inches away from me? I told my Mom on the phone "yoga is still a little too 'new age' for my taste." Her reply? "Honey, yoga really isn't 'new age' anymore."
Where was I? Exhale. The Gansevoort. Right.....so my friend Dara and I trek it down to meatpacking through the snow. (Dara, smart girl, opted out of the class, by the way.) The class begins and there are two people "team teaching". We'll call them Jack and Jill. Jack and Jill have been married for 30 years and teaching this class together for just as long. Jill was this little waif of a woman in her 50s who didn't have an ounce of fat. Jack was similar in description. There was a DJ in the room spinning tunes to Jack & Jill's instruction and probably about 30 skinny, firm, sculpted women. And then there was me.
Oh yeah.....upon arrival, I found out that we are to do the class wearing socks. Guess whose sock had a big hole in the bottom?
We started out doing this sort of marching in place thing on the side of our mats. Okay, I thought, I can *do* this! That's when Jill instructed us to do push ups. Okay, I do not *do* push ups. This is where things go bad.....
Instead I just chose to lie down on my stomach and watch. Uh oh. Here comes Jill with her wireless mike. "What is your name?" Gulp. "Laurie?" I breathed, hesitantly.
So for the rest of the class I heard over the DJ's pounding techno beats:
"Laurie! Flex your foot!"
"Laurie! Get that butt down."
"Laurie! Your back should be flat!"
"Laurie! You need to be lower to the ground when you do this!"
"Laurie! You should not be lying on the ground lifeless like that!"
You get the drift......
I obediently tried to get my arse in gear, to no avail. I was floundering around on the mat like a dead fish for most of the class. All of the graceful butterflies around me seemed to have this down to a T. They all effortlessly did what Jack and Jill instructed. When Jill wasn't telling me what to do, Jack was at my side demonstrating. Good lord.
I couldn't even roll my eyes anymore, because they hurt.
The ONE single thing that I *could* do was a split. I was so proud of myself. My high school majorette skills have not completely vanished. Look Jill, look at me! I can do one of the things in this stupid class. Look at my perfect split! Look! I am so proud of myself!
Jill wasn't looking.
One of the last things we had to do was a full "bridge". You know- the thing where you're in a back-bend, holding yourself up. I cannot do this. It gives me a headache. I had lost momentum. When my brother and I used to play Nintendo back in 1990, there was this cruel thing you could do to the other player. You pressed the "pause" button right when Mario was in the middle of jumping over a deep ravine, and he would basically lose momentum and fall to his death and then your turn would be over. This was how I felt. Someone hit my proverbial "pause" button. I just lied down on my mat again, sweating and panting, my face red and my body exhausted.
Jack, and Jill, could you please go up the hill to fetch me a pail of water?
They did no such thing. Jack did not fall down, nor lose his crown. And Jill did not come tumbling after. The only one tumbling down was me.
Finally the class was over and everyone clapped. I clapped too. I think I was clapping for a different reason from everyone else. I was clapping because I'll never ever ever have to attend "core fusion" again.