Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Thank God for Les Mills!

You may be wondering who in the hell is Les Mills? Is One Fat Chick cheating on her hubby? Is he her new guru? Has she joined a cult?  The answer to all of those is No.  Les Mills is a New Zealand athlete who competed in the Olympics decades ago.  And why am I thanking God for him?  Well, because his sons started the Les Mills exercise programs.  These programs, more specifically Pump and Combat, have done the impossible.  They have turned yours truly, a charter member of the I Hate Exercise club into an exercise fanatic.  Yep, I said it.  I love to workout.  I love to get sweaty.  I look forward to it and can't wait to do it.  The same girl who was a certified couch potato now exercises 6-7 days a week.  You read that right.  6-7 times a week. 

Let me explain how I fell in love with these programs.  Before I had surgery, I was going to the gym.  Trying to get myself to like exercising.  A feat I always thought was impossible.  I never did group classes (other than Water Aerobics) because I was embarrassed to be in group classes with all those fit people.  But one day, I put on my big girl panties and decided to try the Les Mills BodyPump class at the gym.  I talked a friend into going with me and attended the class after work.  I was embarrassed exactly as I thought I would be but I forced myself to walk into the room.  I had no idea what I was doing but one of the ladies was nice enough to help out the newbie and get me set up with some equipment.  A bench, a barbell and weight plates are needed for this class.  It is 55 minutes of weightlifting to music.  Squats, lunges, clean and press, chest, shoulders, biceps, triceps, etc.  You name it they work it out.  I had no idea what I was getting myself into.  I was easily twice as big (if not three times) as the rest of the women in the class.  Part of me wanted to leave but I forced myself to stay.  About 50 minutes into the class I had to leave and throw up.  I had never exercised that hard in my life.  The amazing part was that after I threw up, I walked back into the finish the class.  Me!!  Someone who would usually take any excuse not to exercise voluntarily walked back in after working out so hard I vomited!!  Color me surprised...LOL  But you know what?  I had the best time (minus the throwing up of course)!!  It was hard, I was tired and a sweaty mess but I discovered that I loved lifting weights.  It made me feel strong.  

I took the classes for a few weeks after that up until I had surgery.  After surgery, I was tired all the time and couldn't make myself start working out again.  For the first 5 months after surgery, I did nothing.  I also had to cancel my membership because I couldn't afford it anymore.  So there went the one exercise I actually found that I liked.  

One day, I realized that I really had to start exercising.  I am terrified of having all that loose skin and I've heard that working out is the best way to combat that.  I also wanted to show my children by example that exercise is an important and fun part of life.  I decided to focus on what I liked to do.  I don't like to walk.  It's boring and pointless.  I know they say it is the best thing to do but I can't stand it.  If I was going to actually work out and keep doing it, it would have to be something I liked. Since I no longer had a gym membership, I started small by using my Wii Fit.  That was fun and something the kids and I could do together.  But it quickly became not enough.  I found out that Les Mills actually had a program to use at home.  It is called Les Mills Pump and is the home version of the class I loved at the gym.  I had to have it.  It came with all the equipment necessary and 10 DVDs.  I started working out with it as soon as I received.  It was just as fun as I remembered and it made me feel so strong.  

Then Les Mills released a home version of their BodyCombat program as well.  It is a workout that uses moves from multiple martial arts disciplines as well as boxing.  It is fun, a great workout and I get to punch and kick.  What a great stress reliever!!  

It's amazing to me that I've been doing this for 60 days now.  Working out 6-7 days a week and enjoying it. The inches are melting off and I'm getting muscles I didn't even know I had.  Did you know that there are actual muscles on your shoulders?...LOL  My surgeon is thrilled that I'm working out so much and it's definitely showing.  I finally figured out the key to get my butt moving.  It had to be something I really enjoyed and I found it.  So, yes, thank God for Les Mills.  He is the reason I am finally getting into shape, setting a great example for my kids and actually leaving the couch. 

Now what do you enjoy doing?




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