There are so many different types of workout classes these days, and I have tried many of them: yoga, barre, sculpt, bikram, spin, CrossFit, Orange Theory, Barry’s Bootcamp, etc. There are things that I have liked about all of these classes, and things that I have not.
The more I’m exposed to different classes and teachers, the more I start to pay attention to what pumps me up and what doesn’t.
It’s not until I go to a yoga sculpt class at CorePower in Charlotte, that I start to actually think about what it would be like to teach. And it’s because of the instructor. Her name is Tarole and she is everything. She’s bubbly, strong, motivating; and her energy is absolutely contagious. Her classes are so hard, yet always fun at the same time. I find myself pushing myself harder in her classes. I notice she plays the music louder than other teachers, too, AND her music is not only so good, but every action we do always matches with the beat. It’s incredible how much harder I push myself just because of the music.
Slowly, I start to imagine a new workout. One that incorporates all the things I like from all the different classes I’ve taken, and one that doesn’t include what I don’t like. Here are my thoughts:
Sculpt: Love the strength exercises, hate the yoga flow.
Barre: Love the tiny movements, hate the planks and music is generic and lame.
Bikram: Love the balance and stretching poses; don’t hate anything – I love bikram, but it’s a serious workout without music. I want to create a fun workout with music.
Spin: Love the lighting and the music, hate the spinning!
CrossFit: Love the team aspect; hate the heavy weights.
Orange Theory: Love the competition aspect, hate the rower.
Barry’s Bootcamp: Love the in-your-face instructors, lighting, and loud music, hate the heavy weights.
With all this in mind, I start to form my workout. The following are the most important points:
- MUSIC. It’s got to be loud, fun, and the beat needs to match the movements.
- STRETCHING. Stretching is so often overlooked in all the above workouts (except bikram) and I don’t understand because it’s so essential and feels so good. There will be stretching incorporated at the beginning, middle, and end of my workout.
- ACCESSIBILITY. Incorporate moves that aren’t too difficult, and always have modifications.
- BURNOUT. Loveeee a simple movement that seems easy, but starts to burn after you do it long enough. Bring on the burnout moves!
- FULL BODY. Move through each section of the body for a full body workout.
- HAVE FUN. It’s got to be a good time. People should enjoy working out!
But what and who am I making this for? It’s not like I’m trying to get certified and ACTUALLY teach a class. I’m making this for myself. But I’m not motivated enough to make it only for me. So I think. Where can I showcase my new workout?
My wedding! This will be great. It will be something fun to do during the week that doesn’t involve drinking – I know that we will all need a break from drinking. It just so happens that the villa where my family is staying has an attached outdoor yoga/dance floor. I couldn’t imagine a more magical place to lead a class.
As I begin to try and create this thing, one of my biggest struggles is which to create first – the workout or the playlist. The movement has to match the beat, so I need to make sure specific songs match specific exercises. I spend an obscene amount of time trying to find awesome songs that also go with my movements AND make sense for the flow of the workout, ie how far along we are in the workout.
Rookie mistake #1. In hindsight, this was ridiculous. Obviously, I should be creating the workout first. There are a gazillion songs out there. No matter what movement I’m doing, I can find a song to go with it.
In order to make sure it’s actually a good workout, I have to do it, along with the songs, for the correct amount of time, before I can move on to the next thing.
Rookie mistake #2. So that glute exercise I’m trying to nail down? My ass is on fire after 15 minutes and now when I try to start it again, there’s no way I can tell if it’s a good workout or not because I’m dying after 10 seconds.
Because of these two mistakes, it takes months to get anywhere. Thankfully, mistakes lead to knowledge. Through all of my practicing, I learn that most exercises should last either 30 seconds, 45 seconds, or 1min, depending on how difficult it is. Songs should last about two minutes for two reasons: there’s usually a nice break after two minutes, whether it’s the first two minutes of the song or the last, and right about the two minute-mark is when people start to get bored with the song.
Once I finally have a structure for the workout nailed down, I can put together a list of exercises that I like without having to get up and physically do them (but I usually do).
Now that I can feel something start to come together, what better to place to have a run-through before the big wedding week than my bachelorette party?
I’ve got two months to get this ready for the girls. Now I’m really motivated!