What is your favorite way to get in some exercise? I like doing things that are fun. I’ve tried walking/running, but unless I have someone to go with me it is not really fun and I can’t get the motivation to just go out and run. I’ve also tried ellipticals and other machines (we have them in our basement), but those aren’t really that fun for me either. If I am going to workout, I don’t want it to feel like I am working out.
That is why I love taking Zumba classes! I would love it even more if I could get some of my friends to join me and we could try to master the moves together (mostly unsuccessfully I might add), but attending the class on my own is just as fun because there is a whole group of women there who look just as silly as me.
How to make exercise fun!
If you are looking to get into an exercise routine, and one that you feel like you can stick to I might add, try Zumba. I just love it, and I know if you give it a try you will too! Zumba is great for all ages and all body types, so don’t be worried if you aren’t in great shape…we’ll work on that!
To get started I have a few tips for you to make sure you are off to a good start.
Don’t break the bank
When looking for a class, you can often find them offered through your local park and rec department. If you choose this option versus a private club or private instructor you will often save a ton of money. The class I just signed up for cost me $15. It would have been $10, but I’m not a resident of the city. If you are a beginner, you will probably feel much better about attending a class if you know you didn’t have to spend an arm and a leg.
Come to class with the proper equipment
I attended my first class last week, and after not exercising or taking any classes for nearly a year there were a few things I forgot to bring with me. Learn from my experience and make sure you double check that you have everything with you. Since I go to class right after work, I have to have a bag packed with my dance attire ahead of time. I forgot to pack my sports bra, and any woman who has ever tried to make sudden movements in any direction will tell you that this is a big deal! Let’s just say I won’t be forgetting again.
Another important thing to keep in mind is to wear the proper clothes for the class you are taking. If you are taking a dance class like Zumba, you are not going to wear heavy clothes that can weigh you down. You will be doing a lot of moving, and it is pretty fast paced. The clothes you wear should be breathable and free flowing. Reebok, who sponsored my dance class and provided me with some great workout gear, has an awesome line of dance attire. You can check out the full selection here: Reebok Dance Gear
I actually picked out some great attire for myself, including these FItnIsrush shoes, Dance Cargos, and a very light weight Dance Graphic Tee. I couldn’t be happier with my selections as everything is so light and comfortable. Perfect for those hot, humid nights in the gym.
The shopping process couldn’t have been easier either. You simply use the measurement guide on the website, find the correct size (be sure to use their measurements for a proper fit), add to cart and order. I had my order on my doorstep w/in a few days. So simple.
Here I am in my full getup ready to head out to class.
Attending your first class – don’t expect to master it right away
I have been attending class for two weeks so far, and this is my second overall Zumba class. As someone who does pick up on things fairly quickly, let me be the first to tell you….you will not master the moves the first, second, or maybe even the third time out. DO NOT GET DISCOURAGED! Zumba is fast paced and you jump right in feet blazing… literally. The class is really meant to be fun, so if you get upset that you cannot get the moves down pat right away you will not enjoy it. Also note that although it is a fast paced dance, you really can do it to your comfort level and no one is going to tell you that you are not going fast enough or doing well enough. You just keep moving to the music and that is all that is expected.
If you are determined to really “get it” I have a few suggestions. First, ignore the arm movements at first. Focus only on what you should be doing with your feet. Once you have the steps down, then you can add in the arm movements. If you try to do both at once you may end up just confusing yourself and taking even longer to learn the moves.
Because Zumba is very fast paced you are going to sweat (especially if you are really giving it your all). You really want to have a water bottle handy so you can stay hydrated throughout the hour long class. I actually forgot my water bottle for the first class so I was constantly running out into the hallway to get a drink at the water fountain (or bubbler as Wisconsinites know it).
Be prepared to look silly
As I mentioned above, you most likely will not master the moves right away, which means you will probably look a little silly moving around trying to figure out where you should be stepping and what you should be doing. Don’t worry, everyone else is in the same boat and you all look silly together. Plus, everyone is so focused on watching the instructor no one is even going to notice how many wrong steps you take.
So tell us…..
What is your favorite way to stay motivated to exercise. How do you have fun doing it?
I received free product from Reebok to facilitate this post. All opinions are my own. Be sure to check out the full line of Reebok Dance Gear as well as their other products, and stay tuned for a $150 Reebok giveaway coming up soon!