Dancing to Drop PoundsPosted on Nov 30th 2010 2:00PM by Jenna Mahoney
Now I'm not sure if I've shared this before, but while I have fantasies of running the ING New York City Marathon every November, there are few things in this world I hate more than cardiovascular exercise. Stretching and strengthening -- I say bring it on. I aim to do Pilates and barre work four times a week. But that huffing and puffing and getting my heart rate up sits on the same desire level I have for riding a bus from New York to Boston on a holiday weekend. In my defense, it isn't simply that I grossly dislike cardio; I have a serious case of exercise-induced asthma. Sometimes, I get winded just climbing the stairs from the subway.
Just because I've got the cardio capacity of a bulldog doesn't mean that I'm completely and totally anti all things heart pumping. I love to dance. In fact, for quite a long time I was a serious flamenco dancer. I practiced several hours a week and often gave private concerts with my professional teacher. So it stood to reason that when I went looking for a way to pump up my heart rate, I'd turn to dance.
One of the videos I've had hanging around my house is Bollywood Burn with Hemalayaa, a beginner workout that features three different Indian-influenced dance workouts. The workouts are broken down into 15-minute intervals, and each has the option to turn off the instruction, for just music.
There were a few things that I really liked about doing the videos. One: the aforementioned ability to turn off the instruction. Two: the easy-to-follow instruction. And three: the way I was able to move my body in different rhythms and angles. I also really liked how 15 minutes isn't that big of a commitment. No lie, it took me longer to decide to put on a sports bra and turn on the DVD player than actually do the workout.
I followed the video twice a week. But it was a bit of an effort to motivate myself. I had no one to answer to (except this column), and once I was moving, I felt like I wasn't getting the feedback that I've come to love in my Pilates and flamenco workouts. Having this as a backup is great. But I need to have someone pushing me (and, quite frankly, charging me, so I know that it's all an investment. Next up: I get out of my living room and into (eek!) the gym.
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