Tuesday, June 5, 2012

In which I get my butt kicked

So I joined the YMCA. They had a summer special and they offer babysitting so I plunked down my $122 tax included and became a member. This is my first experience with using a babysitting service at a gym (except for the guest pass I got to the luxury gym a few months back). So I was pretty shocked when the babysitting coordinator told me I could sign up for 3 blocks per week, one hour maximum. Period. That's it. Wow. I mean really, what does one do with 3 one hour blocks of work-out time?? By the time I drop her, change, sign up for a machine, change machines mid-work-out (bc they all have a 30 minute maximum), clean the machine and get back to the daycare, I get about 50 minutes of work-out time in. When I asked if there was any possibility of leaving her longer I got the quintessential, judgmental LOOK. You know, the: wow-do-you-ever-have-questionable-parenting-skills-comma-don`t-you-even-love-your-baby look. Which pissed me off. Because of COURSE I love my baby... just not as much as I love working out. No, seriously, even with 75 minutes I could get a reasonable work-out in. But honestly, 3 - 60 minute blocks? Is that satisfying for anyone or are my exercise needs horribly distorted?? Or am I out of touch with the babysitting at the gym thing... is this a normal restriction?

Anyway 3 hours per week it is. Except on Tuesday... on Tuesdays they offer a mommy and baby aerobic class so I can go to that after my hour, nay 50 minutes of cardio. I have not taken any fitness classes in years for various reasons. It seems that regardless of which class I chose, I ALWAYS wind up with a moron in the class who is so inept and uncoordinated that the instructor winds up spending 80% of her time with the loser who can't follow a simple leg-swing-leg-swing-arm-wave-arm-wave combo and the rest of the class is left leg-swinging and arm-waving far longer than any normal person wants to swing their legs and wave their arms while the instructor sorts the moron out. Seriously, this moron follows me everywhere. Yes, I've used this joke before... you all know this moron is me. It's truly amazing to me that I have run a sub-3 hour marathon but I literally cannot do aerobics or the predictable strengthening exercises that are inevitably part of any fitness class. The butt clenches, the one legged squats, the cross body sit-ups, the supermans etc. etc. The only thing I can do is plank and I recently found out this is not a good exercise for me to be doing (thanks a lot SeaLegsGirl!). I have zero core strength and am completely unable to isolate the part of my body that is supposed to be working. Instead, regardless of the exercise, my whole body seems to wobble, lurch and shake as I try to lift my leg, clench my butt, raise my pelvis, do a double pirouette or whatever other random, impossible thing the instructor chooses.

But somehow I thought mom and baby aerobics would be different. I have to admit, I pictured very out of shape women who had not exercised in years coming in with their one or two year olds for some very gentle running on the spot, stretching and perhaps a jumping jack if things got really wild. It turns out that mommy and baby aerobic is really just aerobics with a baby watching. It is every bit as complicated and strenuous as all those classes I used to fail (if they graded aerobics). I wound up in a class of women with 5 week old - 6 month old babies who were hard core focused on getting their pre-pregnancy bodies back (me too! me too!) but who could follow all the exercises and honestly if they didn't already have their pre-pregnancy bodies back they must have been Ironwomen/Miss Universe contestants before pregnancy. Serves me right for being a snob.

So yes, I got my butt kicked by mommy and baby aerobics today and realized that I really am all legs and lungs (um, and boobs right now to be honest). There is nothing holding it all together. I don't know if working on strength and stability and the ability to leg-swing-leg-swing-arm-wave-arm-wave will make me run any faster but maybe I'll look better???


  1. I used to have a membership at the Y and got so frustrated with the 30 min limit, really who doesn't workout longer?! The gym I am at now does a 90 min limit on under 1 year and you need to make reservations ahead of time for anyone under 6 month (but could do daily), other kids are 2 hours and I have used that a few times.

  2. So what do babies do while mommies exercise? I cannot imagine a few weeks old baby just sitting there patiently and watching. Can a few weeks old even sit already?

  3. After ~17 years of less than stellar running I finally started working on that core stability glute strength balance stuff everyone talks about and my running improved almost immediately! Maybe you already have good form since you're such a fast runner but for me I found it made a world of difference almost immediately. Now I'm wishing I wouldn't have thought those dumb little butt exercises were so worthless for so many years! ;)

  4. Too funny about our similar timing! That childcare situation seems nuts to me. Landon can't start ours at the gym until she hits 3 months (1 week!) but as long as I make an appointment she can stay 2 hours and go 7 days a week, although they won't change diapers and call you back if your baby poops or cries uncontrollably.

    I am hoping this strengthening crap works.

  5. I never follow that 30 min limit on the machines. The Y is not super busy when I go. Also, when I used to drop my son to daycare, I would just write the time down as 10 min later at drop off so that I could get a full hour to work out. I did hate the fact that they did not change diapers..