Comfort Zone

At the beginning of 2011 I made a goal to go to the gym more regularly (I know, lots of people make this goal) and attend classes because I get a much better workout that way.  I also wanted to be conscious of what I was eating.  I was doing great until my brother passed away and I was out of town for three weeks.  Since then I have had a really hard time getting back into enjoying the exercising – I am just doing it.  This week has been no different – but today I committed to myself that I would go and attend a strength training class.  When I arrived  at the gym it was not the Inside Out class that I was expecting but it was Pilates Infusion – no problem I am thinking, this will still fit into my strength training goal.   I had arrived a few minutes late (I was trying to talk myself into not going), the classes had not started yet but the room was packed.  Each person was to get a 2 lb medicine ball and a mat.  There were neither left – I found a suitable replacement for the ball and decided that I had plenty of fat that I could go without a mat.  I found me a spot with sufficient room just inside the door.  The class started and I was good to go.  A few more people arrived later than me and two of them decided that my sufficient space was also big enough for them to squeeze into.  I don’t like to be floor hog so I moved over to make room for them.  All three of us did not have mats – but they are not quite as self-sufficient as I am in this area.  Before long I realize that one lady has left – yah, some room to kind of move again.  But, then she returns with a mat ———- wow, I didn’t think of going to the Yoga studio and getting a mat there – good idea, but if I leave I probalby will not have any space when I get back.   I was also thinking that it would have been really nice for the lady to bring a few extra mats down with her–but not to be.

The class progressed along very good, in fact, I was thinking that I like pilates.  Then we got to this exercise where we were laying on our back and rotating our legs from one side to the other.  I was so squished against the wall that there was no way I had room to do this exercise.  I kindly asked one of the squaters to move alittle to some open sapce in fromt of her so that I would have room (I didn’t think this was too unrealistic of a request since I was there first).  She kind of moved but not very willingly.  Then the insturctor came back and told me to move to this other area of the room where there was more room.  Yes indeed there was more room, but is was basically on the front row.   Talk about making me uncomfortable.  The room has mirrors on one wall and I really don’t enjoy seeing a full reflection of this fat old lady in the mirror and I am sure that others feel the same way.  As I continued with the class I could feel me loosing control of my emotions and the tears were beginning to well up in my eyes.  Only 20 minutes to go, but I realized that I would never be able to keep control of my feelings for that long.  I gathered my stuff up and beelined it for the restroom.  Of all times for there to be a line——–I HAD to keep it together for just a few more minutes.   When I finally got into the bathroom stale I covered my face with a towel and just sobbed.   

While sobbing in the bathroom I reflected on an other time in my life that I used the bathroom stale as a refuge to cry my eyes out.  It was just after my divorce was final and I started to attend dances.  That was pretty humiliating in the beginning.  I would stand there and it felt like the men (which were out numbered by the women by alot) would just walk up and down the rows of us cattle trying to deicde who they were going to choose to pick this time around.  Needless to say, I would endure it for awhile and then I would go into the bathroom and sob for awhile.  I used to measure how I enjoyed the dance by how many times I went to the bathroom to cry. 

While attending all these classes at the gym I think that I have learned alot about how to be a better teacher.  As I was driving home I was thinking about how I could apply the experience this morning to my quilting life.  First off, by attending classes that I am out of my comfort zone it has given me more empathy for those student that my be struggling and how just a smile here and there and a word of encouragment means so much.  Also, realizing what might seem like an easy fix to me as a teacher might put the student in a place where they are not ready to go – way beyond their comfort zone.

Anyway – I will get back on the bike – infact, but I will try to arrive a few minutes early so I can get a space on the back row but in the opposite corner of the door.  That way I might have a better chance of maintaining my space.  I also now know that I do not do well on the front row and I would tell the insturctor to ask one of the other people to move becuase I do not want to move to the front of the class where I would be in full view on the mirror.

Now off to try and get my router talking to my wireless hard-drive that is holding all patterns that I am working on hostage.

Have a great day!

2 Responses to “Comfort Zone”

  1. Didi says:

    You go girl! The best thing you can do for yourself…and your family! I’m sure they want you around.
    I take classes, also. Much easier to go to those than sit on a machine at a gym.
    Looking forward to trying Zumba next week! 6:15 a.m…..really??? 🙂
    I enjoyed your comparison to teaching a quilting class.

  2. Deanna says:

    You are braver than me. I don’t even attend the classes and heaven forbid I use the weights where are the muscle men and women are!!

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