To Zzzz Or To Zumba?

Ok, so I am a little slow on the latest exercise trends but at least I got my ass in gear finally. I haven’t been to a gym since 2005, and I used to exit the classes halfway through under the guise of a ferocious coughing attack, never to return. I vowed THIS time would be different and so far so good.

Why the change? I decided to find something that I actually liked as opposed to something I could tolerate. Just about the only physical activity I enjoy is dancing. I have been an active dancer from the time I could walk (some say my performance of Live Dolly at the age of 6 was award-winning if not epic) on up to the sorostitute Greek Week dance offs. So, Zumba seemed to be the natural choice.

I was pleasantly surprised at the range of ages: collegiate girls replete with super spandex and bouncy ponytails, geriatric gentlemen with sweats, and curvaceous middle-agers in yoga pants and t-shirts.

Our instructor looked like Meg Ryan circa 1986 in Armed and Dangerous but with the wardrobe and enthusiasm of an 80s male fitness instructor. I am talking yellow nylon wind pants, white sneakers and a muscle tee. In her heavy Polish accent, she instructed us to MOOOOVE!! FEEL IT! while shimmying to Maroon 5.

Oh, I moved. I felt it. And I prayed that b would poop his pants halfway through so the Kids Club people would have to bail me out. This was a Work Out.

Did I go back? Yep. Again and again.

Here are some tips to make your Zumba experience enjoyable:

The class description at my gym says bring a hip scarf. Really? Oh sure, I will just grab one from my vast collection. Umm...don’t do this. You will look like an idiot.

If you are new, go early and get a spot in the back. They don’t teach you the moves before kicking it off. You learn by mimicking the instructor or a more seasoned veteran.

If you are insecure about your moves, go solo the first few times to catch on then bring a friend.

There are no real breaks. You don’t get an intermission. Stand near the back or edge to fake unbearable thirst or a cramp to regroup.

Anyone try SoulCycle? The concept seems silly, kind of like when my sister and I used to “car dance”...groove to the music seat belted into our car seats. I will try (almost) anything once, though!


  1. We have a studio in Cleveland name psycle that is modeled after Soul Cycle- I've posted about it many times, so clearly I absolutely adore it!!! I believe flywheel Chicago is a similar concept! We should definitely take a class on my next visit!!!

    1. I remembered you talking about it, but didn't know it was different than spin! It might be a tough go trying to give up manicures in exchange for working out. Can we drink while we cycle? Cocktails and cycling? Eh...probably not the best idea...

  2. It is the same as spin, but you ride to the beat of the music unlike a lot of spin classes where you may just arbitrarily be on a hill. Girl, we can always do a class and then hit brunch and manis after! The class is only 45 minutes!!


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