Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Hula Hoops

I was full of motivation this morning. I was up in time to
take a shower, make the kids a relatively healthy breakfast, brew some tea and make myself a smoothie, all before walking out the door at 7:40 to
take my eldest to school. This is a small miracle. Most days I’m forced to
throw a baseball cap on to cover the disheveled mop that graces my
sizable head. I try to wear glasses on those days, instead of contacts, because
I have convinced myself that they somehow shield my face from onlookers. Yeah,
I’m a heaping pile of self-esteem.

My public persona in tact, I decided to go to my local gym to partake in a class that I had highlighted on
the Group Fitness Schedule a few weeks ago called, “Dance Aerobics.” I love to dance and I hate
kickboxing and yoga so I thought this class might be something I’d enjoy.

Fast forward to 10:00. I dropped my daughter off at the
nursery and cruised to the aerobics room. I hesitated before I opened the door
because I noticed that all of the women were card carrying members of the AARP. I asked one of the women doing
laps around the room, “Is this the Dance Aerobics class?”

“Yes, and it is super fun,” she said in a very enthusiastic
voice, pumping her arms to the beat of a 70’s Motown tune. They were all
smiling and laughing as they danced their way around the room. I considered
running in the opposite direction and never looking back and then I realized that I had
nothing to lose. What if I loved the class? So, I got in step with the rest of
them, doing my best white girl dance/walk around the room.

Our warm up complete, we were each given a hula-hoop and told to revive our schoolgirl moves. I felt like a fool. These old ladies were
tearing up those hula-hoops and I couldn’t even keep it off the floor for 5

The hula-hoop humiliation behind us, we were told to get into a circle and given
medium-sized plastic balls. We passed the balls (there were several in play) to each other in a
constant motion. My fellow dancers laughed like schoolgirls the entire time. It
made me slightly uncomfortable but I decided to throw caution to the wind and commence giggling. It felt great.  I thought of my Mother and her Silver Sneakers class. I was
pretty sure I was in the midst of one. After our coordination and reflex work,
we moved onto the dancing. The teacher asked for requests. Request number one:
YMCA. This request was met with roars of laughter. Oh, the irony! We did some
grapevines and some kicks and had a grand old time.

My Silver Sneakers class was an experience I won’t soon
forget. I took the instructor aside when we finished stretching and asked her
if this was, in fact, a Silver Sneakers class (it wasn’t labeled as such on the
calendar). She looked at me like I was nuts and said, “Oh no.” I shrugged. I
guess the over-60 set is taking over the world of dance aerobics. I can only
hope that, when my time comes, I’m giggling and hula-hooping with the best of


  1. I must admit, I've been spending a lot of time with a very nice lady who is approaching the 60 mark, and, I can tell you first hand, they do make good work out partners. As for the dance-errrr-size, krap, I do my best dancing after about 4 beers, this seems to defeat the value of the exercise, and, I never ever could do that hula-hoop thing, so, I guess you're safe, I won't see you at the Y for a while. P.S. what happened to the cloggin'?

  2. Next thing you know, you'll be sweatin' to the oldies with Richard Simmons!

  3. so will you go back? I would have loved to walk up and see you in that class! Classic!

  4. A. I almost didn't get past the showered and cute by 7:40am part of this post, as I am NEVER that together to drop the kids at school.
    B. Laughed my patootie off at the description of the class. Sad part is, it sounds like it was a blast.
    c. Please tell me I am not quite ready for aarp! I am actually still in my 30s even though I feel like I am in my 20s.

  5. Umm. I forget. Do you drink? This sounds like a day that needs to end with a BIG glass of vino.
    I think it's VERY strange but I would have probably had fun with you today. What does this say about us....don't even THINK about using the word pathetic.

  6. I've found the hula-hoop to be the ultimate test of dexterity. I"m afraid I failed it myself, many years ago when I was still in my twenties. I have been afraid to pick it up ever since. Hula-hoop anxiety, I think it's called. Your post gives me renewed courage.

  7. That is hilarious J!!! You sound like me entering into the world of stretching w/ Pilates! You go girl for sticking it out!!

  8. Papa Dale-
    Nice visual. Still clogging but that's only two or three times a month.

  9. Becky-
    Actually, I think this WAS sweatin' to the oldies!

  10. Melinda-
    I probably will when the original teacher returns. I want to give it one more shot.

  11. New Diva-
    Don't fret. You're not AARP yet. You've still got 20 or so years of an AARP free existence.

  12. Leanne-
    Yes I drink and you are right. I topped my day off with a little vino and it felt fabulous.
    If only you lived closer we could get our hula hoop on together three times a week ;)

  13. Keli-
    I never had hula hoop anxiety in the past--hula hooping, for some reason, was not really a part of my childhood. I've got a serious case of HHA now.

  14. Thanks Katb. You should join me sometime.

  15. I can't believe that my sweet daughter thinks that I am in a "Silver Sneakers" class. Where did she ever get that idea?
    We are much younger than Richard Simmons and he could never keep up with us. Come join us and see if you can keep up.