Monday, January 24, 2011

How to Become a NYC Fitness Brat

So, despite my best efforts, the workout dvd craze ran its course and wasn't doing anything for me anymore, either mentally or physically. It occurred to me that the two dvd's I was working on (Cardio Max and Power Sculpt, both from the Biggest Loser enterprise) were designed for people who are very overweight and out of shape. After doing 30 Day Shred, I'm neither one of those, but sadly, still not at my goal. So, Alix and I sucked it up and joined a gym. Less than a week later, we feel we have gained an exclusive look into a club full of aggressive (read: bitchy), hungry New York women who maximize their membership costs by spending as much time and energy as possible at the gym. Here's the process by which it all shakes down:

Step 1: Visit large, shiny, intimidating gym and take tour with overexcited employee named Paul. Paul will laugh loudly and frequently, as he describes the many attributes of said gym while showing you the machines, the classes, the locker rooms, and the Pilates studio that looks like some sort of torture chamber Hitler might have built.

Step 2: Spend 20 minutes discussing in hushed urgent tones whether we have the money for such a shiny (read: expensive) gym and conclude that we need a day to think about it. Sensing impending disaster, Paul brings complimentary water bottles and offers us the equivalent of three months free membership. Deal suddenly becomes too good to pass up. Sign papers. Walk home feeling overwhelmed, excited, and wondering what the hell we've gotten ourselves into.

Step 3: Gather our courage and visit gym the next day for our first workout class. Disappointment ensues, as the class is full of women in spandex, sighing and moaning loudly while stretching into only mildly difficult toning exercises led by an ex-dancer named James while Eastern-inspired music plays loudly in the background.

Step 4: Gather our courage again, and decide to try a different class - this time, spinning. That's right, the quintessential NYC workout that all those hungry bitchy women opt for, often more than seven times a week.

Step 5: Realize extremely quickly into spinning that despite how surreal the experience is (the dark room, the pumping pop-remix music, the man with a microphone on a bike, and the 50 bikes packed into one room), spinning is actually extremely difficult. Alix and I were ready to die (proud of us, Jillian??) and that was after the warm-up. Thankfully, we made it through.

Step 6: Follow spinning with a half hour of an abs class which not only made me want to continue with the slow death that spinning began, but now I also want to vomit.

Step 7: Go home. And go back tomorrow.

Special Note: To the 50ish-year-old woman who was stretching while I walked by, I'm sorry I did an enormous double take and stared at your boobs. It was because you were wearing a Smith sports bra (go Smith!) and it made me so excited I lost control of all social graces. I hope you were flattered instead of freaked-out.

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