Ballet Bootcamp

I have no motivation to run.

I refuse to jaywalk if it means I have to change my pace, even slightly. I’d rather wait for another bus than run for this one (the only time I’ve run for transportation was when I was late for the last train from Toronto to Hamilton).

I don’t do sports. I don’t do free weights.

I don’t do intramurals, but I also don’t even play beach volleyball when I’m at the cottage with my friends for a weekend; I’d rather sit on the side and talk to my friend’s grandparents.

Every year in middle school, we had to do the “Fall Classic”, some sort of run – a mile? a kilometre? I don’t know, I barely paid attention. It was some beastly mandatory way of showing off the good runners; I don’t know why middle school likes to make life worse than it needs to be, since the whole school watches (“cheers”), you get ribbons (ranking versus “participation”), and even if they say that you should go your own speed and don’t worry about what others are doing, we all know that you’re being judged for how below average you are. Suffice to say, I have negative feelings on running and my middle school and gym class, which is why we can’t be surprised that after two years of doing the Fall Classic, I totally hid from it in 8th grade and am, to this day, not ashamed of that fact.

I could continue listing ways that I’m unathletic, but this is a wellness blog and I’m supposed to show the healthy side of me, which is the side that absolutely loves exercise classes. I need that slightest bit of not wanting to be the worst in the class (as opposed to it being horrendously obvious as in gym class, and there is no ACTUAL “worst” here) and I need somebody to tell me what to do (unlike free weights). I don’t like being depended upon (I’m looking at you, sports) and I like routine and having to show up somewhere at a certain time (no thanks, drop-in sports games!). I like dipping my toe into something different every semester, rather than “I’ve done ________ all my life! I have no choice but to be good at it! :)))!”; the variety of exercise classes soothes the “Jack of All Trades” part of me (Which is 100% part of me).

In the past couple of years, I have tried: Bollywood dancing; Bellydancing; Muay Thai; Poledancing (my absolute favourite and I wish I could do it forever); Butt, Legs, & Core/Abs, Back, & Booty; and Ballet Bootcamp. (I’ve also tried one barre class, hot yoga, and pilates, but I have only negative things to say about them.)

I did ballet for a year when I was a kid and absolutely loved it, and completely understanding how life works, I figured I would quit it, try other things, and pick ballet up again later after I had tried everything else. Every year since I’ve gotten into exercise classes I have wanted to try ballet again. It finally took until my last year of schooling to do it.

God, I’m so much worse than I thought I would be.

Please don’t judge me for how messy my apartment is.

It’s great fun having pointed toes and leaping around, until you look at your instructor to try and improve your form. … Your tall, thin, muscular, pretty instructor who turns out to be professional enough that she’s gone to Ireland for the next couple of weeks to be a part of Swan Lake… Ah yes, look at her and look at how you can fix yourself to be more like what she’s doing. Ah… Yes, you are the leaping donkey. Why are you out of breath already?

My muscles don’t hurt as much as my Abs, Back, & Booty class (which I have taken three semesters in a row), but I work up a sweat, enough to mask the tears of incompetence. (Don’t worry, I know we’re there for “self-improvement” and blah blah blah. But when you face a mirror and watch yourself jump around or fail to find the balance that you thought you had so much of, it can be the tiniest bit disheartening.)

I’m glad I took Ballet Bootcamp and not just Ballet, because even in this class there are half a dozen girls who have taken ballet all their lives. At least in this class we’re individuals, not trying to work through choreography together while I’m ten beats behind. This class still makes me feel good between endorphins, taking care of my body, and satisfying the desire to do ballet after close to two decades.

Anyway, I could review each of my classes, but everyone has got their own interests. I just hope everyone finds an exercise type that makes them happy because I sure as hell know that every other type of exercise makes me wish Exercise was a tangible concept that I could tie bricks to and throw into a river (after much struggling because my muscles are pretty weak).


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