February 21, 2007 at 8:52 am
I survived my first kickboxing class without getting a close-up look of the Nike sole pattern in my face. I’m not sure which is more a danger to me, myself or the kicks and punches of my fellow turbo cardio participants. I think the lady to my left was gunning for me, the feisty old broad. And I haven’t even perfected my blocking guard yet!
The yoga class ahead of us was running 10 minutes late, so everyone congregated in the hallway of the elementary school the class is held in. I can’t recall the last time I was in an elementary school, but, wow, I do not miss that government institutionalized look. Just being in a building like that reminded me of the time as a child when adults have complete say over what you do. Walking through the cafeteria on the way in brought back similar sensory memories of bad food and weird smells and annoying classmates. If someone had handed me a lunch tray, I might have had a full flashback to 5th grade food fights and gone catatonic.
As I was sitting there on the hard, compact carpet, thankfully not rocking myself back and forth due to post-traumatic elementary school trauma, I wondered if anyone had actually checked if the door was open. I remember a couple times in high school we’d all get back from lunch and loiter in the hallway outside the door only to discover the teacher had left it unlocked. Of course I fulfilled my part in proving humans are pack animals by being too timid to actually check the door or ask anyone about it. Eventually a girl poked her head in and saw all the yoga students* doing their final rest in a dimly lit gym. Once they exited, we got to start our class.
I did pretty well, especially considering I’ve never done a group aerobics class before. I’d run through a video tape or two at home, but I’ve never belonged to a gym and we never did tapes in PE. This was actually an activity I preferred doing with other people because when other peopled effed up the choreography I felt far less inferior than I would have otherwise, like a Cro-Magnon instead of slime that had just crawled out of the ocean. A lot of people were better at the choreography than me either because they’d been to the Thursday class as well (cheaters!) or they’d taken kickboxing before. But I kept up fairly well, though my definition of “left” and “right” are clearly more flexible than other people’s. This will no doubt eventually lead to an uppercut to my chin.
We only did half a workout because the instructor needed to teach us basic moves, but I was able to survive without collapsing on the shiny wooden floor or being TKO’ed or even KO’ed. I was rather proud that I was not exhausted and there were clearly people there who were more out of shape than me. The last time I was in a school gym I was obviously the poorest athlete in the crowd and now I’m sitting in the middle of the bell curve. It was a nice change of pace, but I need to be more careful about moving my body with the punches and kicks. I tend to want to plant my body still, which will only lead to knee injuries.
*ETA: This originally said “yoga nuts,” but I changed it because the yoga people were offended. I wasn’t trying to use the term “yoga nuts” in a derogative way. I would classify myself as a “Pilates nut” and probably a “health nut” too. And I like nuts a lot, especially cashews. So don’t hate on me, yoga-philes! I may not understand your culture, but I mean you no harm. I guess you only get to use the term “nut” if you are a part of the group you are calling nutty. Since I’m a cashew and not a pistachio, I’ll refrain from using this phrase again.