It didn’t take long into my new obsession to hurt myself. You see, my Ego and my Brain, we feel like we’re 25 and that there’s no reason why we can’t go from laying on the couch playing video games for hours to suddenly performing acrobatic feats like the rest of the dancers. My Body has conflicting ideas, however, and keeps getting in the way of my goals.
Early in December, when school let out and I had some time off, I had planned to take Fenton’s hip hop aerobic class on Tuesday and Thursday mornings. BOY was I looking forward to adding another class to my schedule! I hyped him up, telling him that I would be there, and on the first Tuesday morning that I was free I delivered. Imagine my shock when I saw a freaking LIVE DJ setting up to guide the group in style. I still regret not taking a picture of his badass shoes.
Fenton pushed me at first (which I totally appreciate) encouraging me to dip lower in the lunge and squat based moves. But he backed off once he saw me starting to really struggle… and I mean really struggle. My calves were on fire, I was drenched, and red in the face. Pauses, both for breath and to give my legs a break, became more frequent and Ego was convulsing. I completed the class but in the process I pushed myself too far and re-injured my right knee.
Here’s the interaction between Body, Ego and Brain that occurred that morning:
Brain: Oh my gosh Body! This is great isn’t it?
Body: Yes. It’s amazing. I’m going to need a break soon though.
Brain: Naw man! You should keep doing this! You CAN do this!
Body: Yeah this hurts. Let’s take a little break.
Ego: You gonna let all these housewives and kept women* trounce you? You? The girl who’s enrolled in five different dance classes? You’d better bring it! You have to get stronger! You have to work on your stamina! You’ve gotta tone up and lose weight! You wanna see those abs right? What about your GOALS?
Body: Yeah. I’ll tell you what. Fuck this knee right here.
Brain: Wait. WHAT? Seriously?
Heart: UHHH LADIES? I’m about to take you both out!
*Ego is a shithead.
I called my chiropractor’s office to schedule a massage to try to work out whatever I had just done. My massage guy, Steven, and I always have great talks while he pummels my muscles into goo. This time was different. It was still great but Steven actually laid into me about my health. “Sue Anne. Your. Legs. Are. Not. Strong. Enough. To. Do. The. Things. You. Are. Trying. To. Do!” His voice was raised but he was kinda laughing as he berated me. He continued, “In addition to your two workout classes I want you to add 10 minutes of squats for two more days. And I’m sorry for coming down on you.” He didn’t need to apologize. I needed to hear it. In fact he’s said these things to me numerous times before but Ego always turns a deaf ear. New goals.
All of this dancing started taking place right before the new year but the goals I have are not related to New Year’s resolutions. I find it important to make that distinction because New Year’s resolutions are always forgotten after the first month. I got out a notebook and made notes of fat percentages, weight, strength, flexibility, measurements, etc. I hear Steven’s voice in my head, “NO! ONLY STRENGTH! All the rest of that will come if you focus on strength.” Daily, weekly, monthly goals, and goals for the end of the year were marked for my fitness as well as for each style of dance I am learning. I looked up meal prep recipes and have been making my own low calorie, low fat meals. I’m paying attention to my daily calorie count rather than just recording it. I looked up what the healthiest change I could make in my routine is and… AH CRAP. Noooooooooo!
Brain: Sugar. Gotta cut it.
Body: Haha! You’re kidding right? Why are you looking at me like that? You’re kidding.
Brain: (unintelligible grumble) …knee… (unintelligible)
Here’s what cutting sugar looks like for me. I’m no longer putting a tablespoon of maple syrup in my tea, or cream for that matter. I’m not too excited about buying juice anymore. So much sugar. Usually, if I drink juice, I cut it with water about 50/50 though. Looking at added sugars in just about everything I buy. Why is all this sugar in here? I read somewhere to try to keep your sugar at 12 grams per serving or lower. That’s a good start, because somewhere else I read to keep it at about “one can of coke worth” of sugar daily. Now here’s the funny part. I went to one of my favorite Asian stores and went down their sweets aisle looking for sweets with sugar under 12g per serving that I otherwise WOULDN’T HAVE BOUGHT and brought those into my home. I also discovered Halo Top ice cream and bought 5 of those. Cutting sugar meant buying sugar. I’m… working on it.
I’ve counted calories on an app for several years now. I’ve heard you’re not supposed to weigh yourself every day but the data points on the chart fascinate me. Once I jumped into all of these new dance classes… well… let me show you the chart!
The only other time I weighed this little was when I was working out with a personal trainer once or twice a week. See all of the activity right above Feb 2019? That’s hip hop.
SO yeah. Blah, blah, blah. I’m getting healthier and weighing less. Point is – this is all due to my desire to dance hip hop. When I embarked on this journey I kinda knew it was going to be my fitness revolution. It’s also been a revolution in happiness as well.
Find your fitness revolution. Love,