Thursday, April 9, 2015

Tales of a fitness instructor.

When it rains, it pours…I did warn you I had lots to say lately!

But first, can I please inform you of my new favorite weekend breakfast? Pancakes. Not only are they gluten-free, they are also grain-free with only TWO ingredients! Well, unless you want to get fancy…which I always do. 

All you need is one banana and two eggs.  I like to add cinnamon and ground flax seeds to the batter for fun.  To make the batter, mash the banana, beat in the two eggs, pour into a coconut oiled skillet, and cook them just like normal pancakes. They are obviously flatter than your typical flour pancakes; they remind me more of crepes, but regardless, they are PANCAKES! And the topping possibilities are endless! My favorite topping combination was the one shown above: almond butter, a drizzle of coconut butter, and “strawberry sauce” (frozen strawberries that I warmed up in the microwave. Fancy). 

So, I have been teaching fitness classes for many years now, and one of the best parts about it is that one class is never the same as the next. It seems like I always have some entertaining stories (if I say so myself) about various occurrences during my classes. My Zumba class last week, though, was unlike any other that I have ever had. 

I decided to switch up the usual pace of the class and allow some of the participants to help me lead different songs. I warned them before class started that I would pick on them randomly if I had no volunteers. I saw some mixed emotions on their faces when I announced this, but decided to proceed anyway. Luckily, I had volunteers for the first few songs. After that, I had no other volunteers and when I picked on others, they politely declined.

Post-Zumba selfie...very necessary

The ridiculously extroverted aerobics instructor in me did not understand this. If I were participating in a class like this, I would have run up to the front immediately. But afterwards, I realized that it takes a lot of courage for most people to even attend a class, let alone stand way up front next to the instructor for an entire song. There have been numerous occasions during which people have told me they are interested in attending a class but are too nervous or scared of others staring at them or judging them. But what I can tell you very confidently (because I always glance at where other people are looking when I’m teaching), is that the new people are looking at the instructor and the experienced people are looking at themselves. And this is also true at the gym outside of the group fitness classes!

So if you’ve been eying a new class or a new machine at the gym that you are too nervous to try, just do it! It makes me so excited when I get brand new attendees in my classes, and I try to make them feel as warm and welcome as possible, until my crazy instructor persona comes out in the middle of class (just kidding).

Have you ever experienced this? Are you too nervous to step outside the gym box? 

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