Guest Post by Colleen Nichols
Not too long ago, I attended my first fitness class since I graduated from college. I used to be a 5:30 AM spin regular, and I enjoyed it because it was dark and everyone was doing their own thing. So when a new friend invited me to a kickboxing class a few weeks ago, I accepted, but absolutely felt as though I jumped outside of my comfort zone.
There were times when I jabbed rather than hooked, I got tripped up, or stopped for a second thinking “What the heck?!” Learn from my mistakes on how to avoid looking like the newbie (or at least not stick out like a sore thumb).
1. When the instructor asks “Do we have any first timers with us tonight? Don’t raise your hand. If you do that, all bets are off.
2. Try your best not to sweat profusely during the “warm up.” Also, avoid letting out an audible groan when the instructor says “Good warm up, ladies! On to the workout!”
3. At the first water break, don’t guzzle down your entire Nalgene. This will create cramping for the remainder of the class. You also risk dying of thirst for the next 45 minutes. Definitely cherish you H2O!
4. Pack your poker face. If the instructor calls for a 60 second plank, don’t get bugged eyed and run out of the room. Fitness classes are about pushing yourself, so just attempt it and give it your best shot!
5. Position is key. If you hide in the far right corner in a fitness class, you might as well send up flares while yelling “I DON’T WANT TO MESS UP SO I’LL HIDE!” That said, front and center is a place where everyone will see you fumble over your criss-cross jumps. Settle in the middle of the room so you can follow the people in front of you, without cowering in the corner.
6. Don’t wear jorts. I didn’t do this one, but I’ve seen it done. Jorts are a dead giveaway that you’re new and have no idea what’s going on. It’s also a safe bet you’ll experience chafing like you never have before. Leave the sweatband at home too.
7. If in a kickboxing class, look behind you before you back-kick. Let’s just say, you feel like a huge jerk when you kick a high schooler in the face.
8. If you choose a spinning class, come early. A sure sign of your newness is fiddling with the seat when class starts. Give yourself time to get settled!
9. Have fun. New or experienced – if you’re not having a good time, why even bother? I get nervous before my first time in a group class, but I have no problem laughing at myself the entire time. Side kicks? Can’t do ’em. Criss-cross jumps? I often trip myself. But it’s fun! Laughing works those abs!
Read more from The Lunch Box Diaries.
Share your first group class experiences. What’s your favorite group class?
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