Thursday, January 28, 2010
This will be my last post for a while. I will be heading to the jungles and beaches of Thailand and Cambodia for my month-long New Year’s vacation. In the meantime, I am spending this week in Changde with my boyfriend in preparation for the trip: Booking hostels and beach resorts and, more importantly, getting my winterized body ready for a bikini.
Fortunately for me, my boyfriend recently joined a newly renovated gym near his apartment. I went for the first time three nights ago for a spinning class. I have never tried spinning, but I thought to myself, I know how to ride a bike, so how hard could it be?
Spinning, it turns out, is torture. The worst part is that the class is in a small room enclosed in glass, so everyone in the gym walking by or on a treadmill can witness the pain. The bicycles have these heavy metal wheels that can only be stopped by pressing a level under the handlebars. A couple times I tried to stop and nearly toppled off the bike.
“Are you OK?” my boyfriend asked over the thumping bass of the music.
I turned around on my bike seat and looked back at him. “This is hell,” I said.
“It’s only been five minutes.”
Forty minutes to go. I considered faking a stomach cramp and slipping out the door, but I knew I would get hell for it from my boyfriend. So I tried to tap into that burst of energy I experienced the last mile of the Chicago Marathon, when I was so exhausted I could have collapsed to my knees but instead pressed on, saying to myself like a mantra, “Forward, forward, forward.” I could do it then, after 25 miles, so I could do it now on a stationary bike amidst flashing disco lights.
That burst of energy didn’t come. I struggled. I panted. My thighs quivered. I did not even try to hide my exhaustion. I pedaled slower than everyone else. A chubby man in glasses on the bike next to me pointed to the black knob on my bike frame and said, “You can turn it to the left to make it easier.” Even he, that chubby, bespectacled man, was pedaling faster than me.
I tried to focus on the thumping bass, tried to bring a foot down with each beat. I was a little behind the beat, but the music drove me to pump faster than I would have otherwise. So, song by thumping song, I got through the Spinning Class from Hell.
Encouraged that I survived spinning without making (too much of) a fool of myself, I agreed to try an aerobic dance class last night. For a non-dancer, I can honestly say, OK, not too shabby. The directions were pretty straightforward. Side step, side step, hop hop, shimmy shimmy, shake your butt (pictured above). Repeat.
Next on the agenda: Pole-dancing class.
Posted by Jolie at 3:36 AM