I added onto my post yesterday about taking my first ever Zumba Gold class. Zumba Gold is for those of us who are over 50 and it doesn’t bring quite the intensity as the regular Zumba workouts. This does not mean, however, that it’s a gentle stroll on a sandy beach. During that hour, you dance-workout to a number of up tempo songs doing dance steps, working all your body parts, shimmying like a Dancing with the Stars contestant and, in general, getting your heart rate up, up, up. There are also some numbers where you dance while shaking toning sticks and that focuses additional toning strength on your arms in particular.
This class was a blast. I am thrilled that I was able to keep up and do the entire workout without keeling over from lack of oxygen or having my legs collapse beneath me like melting gelatin.
One thing that I kept thinking about yesterday was the importance of being willing to try this new activity and not be self-conscious or embarrassed about how I might actually appear while doing the moves. While I have the ability to keep a beat and decent rhythm, I sure as hell did not look as crisp and solid in my motions as the instructor and some of the other women in the class. Some things that were awesome dance moves by them were closer to flailing when I tried them for the first time. When I shimmy my boobs threaten to swing from one side of the room to the other, so I was glad that I wore a snug sports bra under my T-shirt. One wall of the room is a floor-to-ceiling mirror. I focused on the instructor and definitely not on myself.
So here’s my point. Sometimes you just have to dance like nobody’s watching. I aimed for constant motion over quality and precision. I’m sure I’ll get better with practice, but in the meantime, the goal was cardio exercise. It’s not like I had a dance judge waiting to score my performance. Nobody else in class was going to offer me a style critique. A couple of them also flailed a bit even though they have more experience.
Overweight people are very self-conscious, by and large. (No pun intended.) We don’t have great body image. I’ve only met a few women in my life who were overweight and completely comfortable with their excess pounds. In fact, they both belly-danced, wearing sheer, revealing, midriff-baring outfits! I admire their confidence while knowing that I’d never replicate it in quite those circumstances. I’ll get up and dance with friends at parties and not think twice about it because it’s all about the fun.
I was able to put away my self-consciousness and Zumba like nobody was watching. In that class, it was all about the fitness.