Why I Love……………….ZUMBA!

If you read One Month In! you may recall my mentioning joining a number of exercise classes in order to achieve my long time dream of not having to be rolled off of the plane when I eventually get back home. Not like I ever have been mind you;but whereas people have nightmares about normal things like being chased by monsters or featuring unwillingly in a family member’s pot of soup, I find that mine tend to be more about pounds that reflect on the weighing scale rather than their rightful place (my account) which brings me to the reason for today’s post: my love for zumba.

Prior to coming here, I had never really used the gym although like a lot of girls I know I had resolved several times that I would etc; and had actually made inquiries here and there but never actually got round to doing it. Which is why when I started eating all those desserts and realized that those pounds need to go somewhere other than my cheeks I had no idea which of the fitness regimes available at my gym to try. My flatmate (also Ghanaian) tried to persuade me to try zumba but- and this is something my friends know- I have this small issue with dancing in public. I am perfectly happy dancing away in a chair in public, or even dancing to a song in my room. However, get me off that chair in public and suddenly I am a pair of left feet, unable to bust a move to save my life. Of course under certain circumstances I forget that I supposedly have two left feet and dance like nobody’s watching but that’s a story for another day.

I had a feeling the treadmill wasn’t for me if I wanted this to be something that eventually became a habit (no, I’m not crazy…yes, I have heard that people meet cute boys at the gym but you’ll have to see how I look when I’m going to the gym to understand that this cute boy thing is probably not going to happen).

Anyway after reviewing all the facts, we decided to try a couple of classes before choosing which ones we would actually stick to. She was still for zumba but being the independent 21 year old woman I am, I decided I was going to try spinning first. Maybe I just overdid it that day (or not); whatever the case may be, let’s just say 3 days of an aching behind later, I realized that perhaps my behind did not quite provide the kind of cushioning one needs for such pursuits. Now, I quite love the behind I’ve got but I could not imagine continuing with spinning unless I somehow miraculously bulked up in that department before the next class.

So I decided to just suck it up and try this Zumba I had heard so much about. I must admit my first day was almost the disaster I imagined it would be, having sworn off of dancing for so many years as I had, I often found that while the class was doing one action I was still busily doing the previous one and when everyone was moving in/ facing one direction I was doing the opposite because I hadn’t grasped the most basic rule of Zumba i.e. keep your eye on the instructor, always.

But it was fun! Which was ultimately what I was looking for, a way to keep in shape while having fun. It does help that (especially in the Monday class) most of the music is upbeat and contemporary stuff I already like. Also, there’s a lot of shimmying and winding which I (and presumably the guys that come peeking to see what’s going on) quite enjoy. When songs like uptown funk come on, I can’t wipe the grin off my face; and the once or twice we’ve done Fuse ODG’s antenna, you’d think I’ve been pumped full of adrenaline with the sudden spring that comes into my step. I have since then tried yoga and aerobics which I quite like as well but Zumba! that’s what has my heart. If you’re trying to lose weight and you’re looking for something that combines fun and weight loss, I suggest you give it a whirl. Especially if like me you’ve got a behind to protect 😉

It doesn’t matter if you’re a bad dancer either, everyone is too busy trying to keep up to care how you’re doing. You can stand in the back till you are confident in your moves but the more you keep going, the better you get so don’t get discouraged if your first class is a bit of a disaster. So go ahead, try it! Your behind will thank you, and even if those pounds don’t end up in your account, at least you know you won’t be seeing them on the scale either!

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