Jazzercise. Yes, it still exists.

On Saturday morning my good friend Amy talked me into going with her to Jazzercise.

Yes, I said Jazzercise.

It still exists—at least in small-town, Iowa, that is.

So, intrigued by this Olivia Newton John-esque exercise class and disgusted by the current state of my body, I accepted the offer.

Saturday morning I crawled sprang out of bed, pulled on my leotard with the elastic belt and matching leg warmers slick pants and old Lincoln half-marathon T-shirt (so I could create the illusion that I’m a “real athlete”) and drove to Amy’s.

Now, not only did we attend Jazzercise, but we even traveled to another town for Jazzercise. This is how dedicated we are to the aerobic arts. So after the 15-minute drive, we pull up to an old school that’s been converted into a community center and YMCA. Great idea to make use of an old school building that way, but kind of weird to walk down a hallway, glance into what looks like a science classroom, and see people running on treadmills. Jazzercise was held in what was probably the Home-Ec room (or whatever the “PC” term for it is now) because it had a counter and sink in it. Unfortunately, later when I was panting and on the verge of hydration, I would realize that neither the faucet nor the drinking fountain in that sink actually produced water. Super.

Glancing around the room, there were women of all shapes, sizes, and—apparently—allegiance to the 80s. After signing a form that stated that I would not sue Jazzercise if my heart exploded or I choked on my own perspiration, or something to that effect, I realized that there were no more spots left in the back of the room, and we would have to position ourselves up front and smack-dab in the middle. Excellent.

So the music started, and the teacher, who was in her 50s and in fabulous shape (and, I believe, wearing a leotard) started moving, grooving, and encouraging us through her headset to the do the same.

Now, have I mentioned before that I’m really uncoordinated? Yeah, well, I am. I’m sure it is partly due to the fact that my parents were not athletes in any sense of the word AND partly because that they wouldn’t let me sign up for dance when I was growing up. (And I will only mention ONCE that our youngest sister got to take dance lessons even though my other sister and I begged to for years and had to resort to making up our own dances and wearing out our Fame record in our bedroom. But we’re not bitter or anything.)

So here I was shuffling-ball-changing it while trying to shake my booty and trying not to turn the wrong way. Which never worked.

All the while sweating like an Eskimo stuck in the rain forest. (And running out of water after the first song.) That Jazzercise kicked my ARSE!

Oh, and while I was trying not to hyperventilate, pull a hamstring, or twist an ankle, I also had to hold my breath because some poor woman beside me did NOT put on her Sure before she left the house. (And yet she STILL raised her hand. Again and again.)

Apparently the Jazzercise authorities videotaped the session, because I ran across this clip of one of the songs we Jazzercised to.

I’m the one in the middle.

All in all, it was actually a really good workout. And if my body ever recovers, I might even consider an encore performance.


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