Who knew the latest fitness craze could be so educational?
It was a cruel Monday morning after a weekend of excess when I decided to mix it up at the gym. No mind-numbingly dull treadmill while watching Matt Lauer and crew outwit each other. I'd try the latest fitness craze, Zumba! Mari was the instructor, a third my age and a small percentage of my body weight. She was the perfect combo of perk and sizzle.
Three seconds after she walked onto the shiny, wood floor, the music blared and I discovered that not only did Mari look like a Barbie doll, she could dance! Now, as entertaining as this was, I began to wonder how it was going to help me with my own fitness. I started marching a bit, waving my arms from time to time and trying to elevate my heart rate ... but the fancy Latin flourishes eluded me.
Mari was having a ball, but looking around the studio, she was pretty much alone. Nobody could do what she was doing, or anything that vaguely resembled Zumba. For me, it was back to the treadmill and Matt, et al. Fast forward one week: Heidi (do they all have names that end in "i"?) was teaching Zumba. I pride myself for not being a quitter, so I decided I'd try again.
Heidi was far less flashy. She started slowly and continually checked with her students for understanding. She taught the group a cool Samba-like step, and we did it for at least five minutes. Good thing Mari wasn't there, she would have been bored to tears. For me, however, this was fantastic.
I not only learned the step, but I began the process of mastery. I practiced that tiny step in that class and subsequent classes. I noticed how it felt in my body to dance; to move with grace and sass and to do it enough times to break a sweat.
I will probably not be dancing with the stars anytime soon, but I am learning how to get fitness and enjoyment out of Zumba. Now, to my world: Couples Counseling. I fear that I have at times been more like Mari than Heidi. How Couples Counseling Saved My Marriage
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