I started exercise class for the same reason most other women on the planet take up any form of physical activity (not that I’m stereotyping or anything) because I was on my own personal #weightlossjourney. And, in truth, most of that had come from a complete change of diet – you know all those glamorous and oh so sexy necessities like meal prepping and stocking your fridge with fruit and veggies.
But, I felt strongly it was time to take that a step further and really commit to a healthy, balanced life – or certainly, that was what my Instagram feed was telling me. Now, Charlotte and Anna’s classes are by no means the first classes I have attended, having battled with my weight more or less my whole life. However, whilst I enjoyed private classes in Manchester, on arriving in London I found myself faced with overcrowded gyms, apathetic instructors and kinda felt like I was simply another cog in the carousel – and when it comes to your body you should not only demand more, but you bloody deserve it. And so after sustaining a lovely sprained ligament I gave up for a while.
But, at my personal heaviest and nursing a rather wounded heart I was determined to find a class that would work for me. And after trying a few, I finally came across ace-lifestyle on Facebook and going alone arrived nervously, my book in hand, assuming that if no one spoke to me at least I could have a good read. I did not need the book.
Because what makes ace-lifestyle unique compared to the many many other classes I have attended over the past decade or so (boy do I feel old…) is that they genuinely care. They ask your name, your goals, about your life – and credit to them this positive attitude filters through to the members. They have created an ace community; and we chat, encourage and are all fiercely loyal, with good reason.
But, the thing that truly amazes me, in that head-scratching, eyes wide sort of way is that before ace I never really thought about my form. A squat was done if my arse was somewhere in the proximity of the ground, a press achieved if at least one part of my body was in pain. And, sadly, most instructors (not all- obviously I am not whitewashing an entire profession) seem to agree. In gyms we are spurred on with cheers of “c’mon ladies” and “move it,” but there is little focus on aligning your body, on making each movement count, on bloody well working the appropriate muscle for the right exercise. To put it into perspective after 8 years of classes, today is the first day I did a plank correctly. And this is solely thanks to the watchful gaze and considered encouragement of Anna and Charlotte over the past four months or so. Amazingly, this has not only improved my form but made me, in general, far more controlled and deliberate. As a compulsively fast talker and quick mover, I am one of those lucky few who are prone to the odd clumsy moment – where my limbs seem to be taken over by some demonic force, and so this newfound control has proven to be a power of immense good. And that’s not even mentioning the change in my posture – which has been somewhat radical.
So yes exercise has helped me tone up and acted as a fantastic outlet for my stress. But, it has also taught me about my own body and helped me carry and move in a far healthier and more defined way.
The moral of the story…..
Guys get yourself to ace-Lifestyle.