My friend Judy and I are taking a beginning Zumba class for my first blog entry. We approach our destination with much trepidation.
I have a lot of apprehension about anything requiring physical exertion.
The difference between my approach and Judy’s is quite apparent. Judy and I are about the same age, However, her petite frame looks great in spandex. She brings a head band, towel, and water. I, on the other hand, bring a tote bag with all of my medications and a battery operated fan for my relentless hot flashes. I usually turn my phone off when I take classes, but I wanted to have quick access to 911 if necessary.
As we enter the room, I wonder if the Zumba class is in here, or have we accidentally stumbled into “Hot Yoga.” Between the temperature of the room and my hot flashes, I am sweating profusely already and class hasn’t even started. I begin to surreptitiously eye Judy’s towel to mop off my forehead.
I notice an enormous fan in the front corner of the class which poses a problem. Do I stand in front of it calling attention to the new nerdy white chic in class or comfortably hide in the back of the room and risk collapsing from heat exhaustion? I manage to procure a spot that allows me to move freely back and forth as I gauge which is more important, avoiding embarrassment or staying cool.
I notice the full length mirror in the front of the room and as I see my reflection, many thoughts go through my head. The first is, “I thought I was cuter than this…the second is…what was I thinking with this exercise outfit, I look like I am on my way to a funeral but couldn’t fit into my clothes, so I had to wear black stretch pants.
As the class unfolds we are thrust into a fast paced world of movements , often uncomfortable and embarrassing…gyrating, shimmying, swirling, squatting, marching …it was all a blur… At the epitome of my self-consciousness, I burp up my fish oil supplement just to punctuate the unpleasantness of the experience.