Check one off the list: ZUMBA!Posted: March 15, 2012
I can check an item off of my “32 while 32” list! Yesterday I took my first Zumba class- ever! This class has actually been in the planning stages for quite some time, so let me tell you the story behind it.
As many of you know, I teach high school. I volunteered to take the position as “wellness coordinator” at our school three years ago. The position is unpaid, requires some extra time and work, and has been frustrating at times in the past, due to the general lack of interest in health and wellness amongst the majority of people. Regardless of all of that, I continue to keep the position because it’s what I love to do. My passion is educating others about living a healthier lifestyle and getting them to love exercise and being active.
In the past, I’ve run two “Biggest Loser” contests, coordinated a kickboxing class, and organized “spring” and “fall” into fitness challenges. I loved the idea of having a kickboxing instructor (who happened to be my wonderful friend, Jill) come and teach classes at our school- and so many people were excited about it! Staff members were charged $5 per class, and could get a better deal by paying in advance for multiple classes. We started out strong, but eventually people just stopped coming. It had nothing to do with the class- because Jill is an amazing instructor. People simply lost motivation, made excuses, and got lazy.
Back in December, I got an email about offering Zumba classes after school for a specific period of time. We just had to provide a space, be sure that at least 15 people were interested in attending, and the school board would pay for an instructor to come out! Needless to say, I was over the moon about this one! In my seven years of teaching, I have rarely seen any type of healthy initiatives offered from the higher-ups. Usually they try to “reward” us with crappy food and sugar- which people seem to love! Obviously, I have a lot of issues with this. (It makes me want to vomit!) I could go on and on …. but I’ll spare you.
I surveyed the staff to see how many people were interested in the Zumba classes, and the response was overwhelming! The classes were actually being offered to every school in the county, and a number of schools showed interest. Since only so many schools can run the programs at a time (which are once a week, for six weeks), we had to wait a while for ours to start. And yesterday was our first class!
Our instructor, Stephanie, works for a company that basically contracts out instructors to go to different locations (schools, businesses, whatever). I was a little worried because 5 or 6 people emailed me during the day to say that they couldn’t come to class for one reason or another. But, by the time we started, we had 15 people ready to go!
Zumba is hard work, but it’s also so much fun! I have no rhythm, and can not dance, but I just let myself go and didn’t care. I think I was drenched after five minutes, and the class was an hour long! It was an awesome workout, and a nice change from my usual group exercise classes.
This is me and the instructor, Stephanie, glowing with sweat. And just a side note- it is a pet peeve of mine when someone zooms all the way in when taking your picture!
I can’t wait for next week, and I really hope everyone comes back (and more people join in)! Everyone seemed to love it, and people were laughing and smiling and just seemed so happy during the class, and afterwards. It was really priceless and made me super proud. 🙂
When I got home, I actually jumped right on my spin bike for a little bit to test out a song I heard on the radio that I’m currently obsessed with (Cough Syrup by Young the Giant). I went through it twice, and it will be perfect for Sunday’s playlist. I’m really into choosing the music that I use for spin classes, and constantly think “I need to play that” when I hear songs on the radio. I even keep a little piece of paper and pen handy at all times (or send myself a voice text) in case that happens.
After all of the cardio, I made myself a big ol’ smoothie with Vega Vanilla Chai protein powder, a half of a frozen banana, spinach, ice, water, and guar + xanthan gum.
I LOVE WHEN I SEE THIS.
Have I mentioned that I’m obsessed with my Vitamix?…. 🙂
It was 81 degrees when I left work today- and it’s supposed to reach the mid to high 80s today! I LOVE THIS! Although it’s supposed to cool down a bit for the weekend, it’s still supposed to be in the 70s. Who can possibly complain about that (well, I guess snow lovers can complain)! Now it’s one day closer to the weekend, and I took tomorrow off! Life is good.
Does your job provide any healthy (or unhealthy) incentives to its’ employees? Are you a Zumba fan?