I'm not a diet kind of girl. I never have been, probably never will be. I've always had the mentality that I'd rather be fat and happy than thin but miserable because I'm denied all the things I like to eat. Lately, however, it's occurred to me that I could probably afford to be a little less happy in order to be a little less fat and that the baby I had eight (!!) months ago is probably no longer a believable scapegoat for the state of my ass. I've been going to weekly yoga classes for just over two years, but being yoga-fit and hauling-a-22-pound-kid-around fit aren't the same as being actually fit, apparently, so I decided to try the cardio kickboxing class that is held right before yoga class in the same room at the gym. I went to that twice, and while it was hard, it was manageable. Each time, right when I got to the point where I started thinking I needed to quit before I died, the teacher would announce it was time to start cooling down. Hallelujah.
Cardio kickboxing is only on Thursdays, however; and during the weeks that I work on Thursdays I don't like to leave Nico in the evenings, too. There's a "cardio bootcamp" class on Monday nights, though, and I'm always off work on Mondays. Now at this point you're probably thinking something like Nothing good can come of something called "bootcamp." in which case you're smarter than I am, congratulations. Not being smart, I thought How much worse can it be? and went to find out. First off, I arrive to find that all four of the other girls in the class are already super fit and thin. I think I have more body fat on one thigh than any of these girls had on her entire body (so when you factor in the other thigh and both boobs, I think I pretty much have the whole class covered). They were nice girls, so even though I sort of wanted to hate them for being tiny and fit, I just really couldn't. And the great thing about going to gym classes with Serious Gym People is that they're so focused on Being Serious that they never look at the chubby chick in the back who's just trying not to barf up her spleen.
We set up our little aerobic step dealies and chairs and then we did some marching and some kicking and some jumping jacks, and it was great! I was breathing hard and sweating, but totally keeping up and didn't even feel like barfing a little! Bring it, bootcamp! "Okay," the teacher said, "everyone warmed up?" And really at this point I'm sure my face looked like something out of Hyperbole and a Half...probably this one. And she was just getting warmed up, because after the hard-but-not-awful jumping and marching and kicking, we did intervals of box jumps plus swing kicks over the back of the chair plus pushups plus mountain climbers. Three times we did this. Here's a box jump. (Except that video makes me laugh because I started with three little riser squares under my step instead of this guy's eleven and that was about three too many.) And here's mountain climbers. What the hell, y'all. What the hell? This shit should come with medical releases and warning labels.
By the end of this ridiculousness, I was seriously regretting my decision to get up off the couch. Exertion is not pretty on me. I get red in the face and sweat buckets and dude, it's just gross. After we put away our steps and chairs and the other girls all scattered to go help the teacher find stuff, I checked the time on my phone and was utterly dismayed to find that the class was only half over. Luckily, the second half wasn't nearly as terrible. We did circuits of crazy shit like squat lunges with a weight bar on our shoulders and agility ladder exercises and suicides and it was pretty bad, but at that point I was just happy we weren't doing box jumps.
I guess I should be proud that I made it through without quitting, even though I was barely limping along by the end. Today, though, I'm sore in places a lady should not discuss on the internet, and I suspect tomorrow I'll feel even worse. But I have a feeling cardio class is kind of like a bad boyfriend. It makes you feel like crap, but you end up going back for more even though all your friends think you're crazy.