Zumba is crazy, hip-shaking fun for mom

by Rebekah Schneiter
Outnumbered Blog
Oregon author of Just Moms

Zumba. It is my thing of late. This is not because I am a believer in New Year’s Resolutions. This desire to shimmy and shake my way into a fitter self has been brewing ever since I had to give up group exercise in 2005….yep, after the birth of my oldest. It just got too complicated.

My exercise was a scheduling nightmare that didn’t just involve me, but affected my husband and my sons. Classes either happened right in the middle of supper or were during prime family time. There was always the option to take a late-night water aerobics class, but by then I was exhausted and needed my rest so that I could wake and feed whatever baby was currently waking and feeding.

But, we are coming out of the tunnel of early-year-intensity. I even find that I don’t need a nap everyday like I used too, not that I don’t want a nap every day, but I hardly need it. In fact if I do chose to snooze I’m often struggling to fall asleep at night—when I really do need to sleep or my next morning is a bit sluggish.

I’ve tried other means to muscles. I’ve tried Netflix exercise videos, but I’m really not motivated. I mean, that woman on the screen shouting at me to do more deep-leg-bends, well, she really doesn’t know if I’m doing them or not. Plus, my boys try to join in and when a move dictates that I lay on the floor, my exercise routine turns into WWF wrestling, three boys to one mom. The boys always win.

Then I tried running, but if it was too cold…well, then I didn’t really want to go out. And if it got too hot, well, that wasn’t good either. So that left about 6 sporadic weeks out of the year that fit my running temperature needs.

Then I thought, “Well, maybe I’ll just do a few sit-ups each night.” But even that didn’t last. Nutella was way more fun.

The thing is, from the outside I look great. No one would know that I didn’t do a thing to keep my figure. I’ve had people ask me how many miles I run, assuming that I must be a runner. I just smile and say, “Yeah, I run after my boys. Not sure how many miles that gets me in a day.”

But I know. I know I’m not the fit person I used to be. I know that if I try and go on a spontaneous hike up a mountain with my family that I will perhaps die somewhere near the summit. I know when my sister-in-law asks if I want to snowshoe with her I’m pretty sure I won’t be able to keep up with her drive and stamina.

And it is because of this knowing that I signed up for Zumba. I bought a new outfit, recruited some friends, and found a class that is after the dinner hour, but before bedtime.

There is no reason this won’t work. No reason why I shouldn’t claim this as a New Year’s Resolution, but really it is not. It is just a sign of a new era in our family, that’s all it really is….and a whole lot of crazy hip shaking fun.

Image(s):  Zumba Dance

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