You finally muster up the courage to enter a group exercise class after eyeing it through the glass doors for the last several weeks. Even though you have attended the gym for a while you have consistently relegated your new-found resolve to the treadmills and exercise bikes.
You’ve noticed the others milling outside the glass doors before each class. But today is the first day you have mustered the courage to sneak your way into the back left corner next to a rack of exercise balls.
Then, you see them…the fit people…all lined up on the front row and your resolve begins to melt away. I mean, look at them, they seem so comfortable up there. What are they going to think when they get a load of you stumbling there on the back row? It’s time to deal with some exercise insecurity.
Group exercise classes can be a little intimidating to the first-timer. There is often a natural insecurity when you start something new; especially when entering into an ongoing program that others are well-acquainted with. However, it’s important to keep one important thing in mind…gyms are for fitness, everybody’s fitness!
It doesn’t matter how fit or coordinated you are, the only requirement for membership is your money and your time. So, take a deep breath and try not to take yourself too seriously. After all, everyone was a beginner once, but what are the fit people on the front row really thinking?
I am one of those front row people. I love group classes, so I tend to migrate to the front or get pushed up there so that others can follow from behind. So, I can honestly offer some insight into what the front row person is thinking…about the class and about you
These people are usually serious about their fitness goals, so they plan to make every minute of the class count. They are likely to jump a little higher, punch a little harder and cha-cha a little more than the rest. This means their attention is likely to be focused on putting their all into the routine, not on you.
In a good cardio class, everyone sweats and everyone breathes heavy. While some may be more accustomed to the pain of it all, the point of cardio exercise is to push the body and increase the heart rate. So, some of those times when you think you can’t go on one more second, some of the fit people on the front row are thinking the exact same thing. The difference is, fit people are used to the sensation and their hearts work more efficiently, which helps them to recover faster. Trust me, they aren’t thinking about you.
Typically, coordinated (front row) people use the music to cue their choreography. A dancer is inspired by the music, so she is always listening for changes in the rhythm and beat. Since coordinated people pick up on the steps quickly, they can easily immerse themselves in the music, which means they are not paying the slightest attention to anyone else’s missteps.
Haha, I usually stand in the front, but I’ve been told I’m a pretty likable girl 😉 I have given more than a few impromptu lessons between songs and after class on a particular step or combination. If you are having trouble picking up the moves, ask one of the front row peeps to break it down for you. Who knows, she may be your next best gym friend in the making!
It’s your fitness we’re talking about, so don’t let anyone or your perceptions stand in your way. Just line up behind a front rower and hang on tight…before you know it you might find yourself right up there with them. Oh, and if you do…remember what it was like to be the newbie and say a little hello when you see one enter the class.
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