Yes, we're back! It's another For the Love Of...day!
Have you ever tried Zumba? Currently in Miramichi on Sunday evenings at 6:00, a group of ladies get on out and get on up at the Seaman's Hospital to shake their groove thangs! Today my guest is Zumba instructor Erica Fitzpatrick and she's here to talk about why she loves to shake it. Take it away Erica!
For the love of...ZUMBA!!!!
Ok, so here’s the thing – we are not all lucky enough to LOVE exercising. If you are anything like me, the entire time that I am at the gym I am focused on the clock wondering if I’ve been there long enough that the people working the front desk are not going to judge me when I leave. We all need to move our bodies and get our hearts pumping enough that the sweat ruins our make-up, but for me it was something that I would have to make myself do. It wasn’t fun. I didn’t smile. And I sure as hell didn’t want anyone looking at me while I was doing it. But that all changed to me after my first Zumba Fitness(R) class.
It was 3 months after the birth of my third little girl. I was big, bloated, cranky and leaking (Moms you know what I mean). I didn’t go to class that night because I was ready to get healthy again, I went to get out of the house alone for the first time in months. I walked into class expecting to see a room filled with fitness models and to my relief there was every size, shape, age and every fitness level there. When the Latin music filled the room, I followed the instructors lead and felt like a fool. I was moving my body, shaking my booty and even doing a few shimmies. But after a few songs I realized that I was having fun! I was laughing and singing and sweating! Man was I sweating! It didn’t feel like everyone was watching me dance terribly, it felt like we were all doing it together. Some moves we rocked and some moves we would attempt and fail miserably. When class was finished I couldn’t believe I had just spent a whole hour not thinking about my kids or husband or feeling bad about myself or my body. It was an hour of pure JOY!! And best of all – it was exercise!
It was only 2 months after that I became a Zumba instructor. I went from not wanted anyone to look at me, to loving my body enough that I could stand in the front of the room and shake it! I couldn’t wait to spread this joy with everyone I know. I have been instructing for 4 years now and I still feel that exact same joy in every class. Zumba brings on that natural high. You get lost in the music and let your body move while you burn a ton of calories (between 500 and a 1000 Calories to be exact). It really is fitness in disguise.
As an instructor I also benefit from the joy that my students experience. Everyone has their own reasons for going to Zumba. I’ve seen clients lose weight, battle depression, gain confidence, make friends, rehabilitate after surgery or illness. We Zumba freaks usually have such an emotional attachment to our classes that it has turned us into a wonderful Zumba family. Members come and go and come back and bring friends and family and we welcome and support each person. It really is the most wonderful experience.
Everywhere I go people call me “The Zumba Lady” (or “The Crazy Zumba Lady”), and I am so incredibly proud of that title. Zumba has changed my life and the lives of so many people that I love and care about. Zumba is good for the body but more importantly, Zumba is good for the SOUL! If you ever meet me, I will probably try to talk you into coming to class sometime. I can’t help it. I honestly would just love for everyone to feel that joy that I felt from my first Zumba class...and every class since.
I've taken Erica's amazing Zumba class a couple times and I can tell you, it feels incredible. When you let yourself go and get into music you really do forget you're at an exercise class. You'll laugh, you'll sweat, and you'll feel beautiful. Our bodies are not meant to be stationary and even if you arrive thinking you can't do it, I guarantee that after a few minutes, Erica, or an instructor who loves Zumba like she does, will make you think differently.
Thank-you to Erica for being on my blog today. If you live here in Miramichi, track this lady down and get to one of her classes!
And thank-you for stopping by.
Now get out on up and DANCE!