by Nicole Plotkin
It is not easy to be grateful all the time. Even with the best intentions. For all the things you may love about someone or something, it is human nature to become complacent now and then. I think it’s worth recognizing opportunities for gratitude.
For the past 2 and a half years, I’ve been going to a small women’s strength and conditioning studio (Move Fitness Club). I have always been attracted to smaller, “boutique”-style workout studios. I like the community feel and the inclusive nature I have experienced in these places. I have tried over the years to take advantage of the lower corporate rate at the bigger gyms, trying to be fiscally responsible. But every time I tried this, whether as an alternative to spinning regularly at Quad East, or practicing yoga and kettlebell at Spirit Loft, my visit to the bigger gyms always resulted in me having a greater appreciation for the vibe at the smaller clubs.
As with anything you love, when you do it regularly, you might find yourself taking it for granting every once in a while. Yesterday, was one of those times. The awesome new place where I work, organized a group spin at the bigger gym nearby. First of all, I LOVE that the place I work organized this in the middle of the afternoon. And I definitely got my butt kicked in the class. But the vibe the instructor was trying set, quickly made me appreciate the wonderful coaches at Move, former and current.
I have experienced a wide range of spin instructors over the years. There is a rare instructor who knows how to inspire you, without LECTURING. Without talking about how much weight they’ve lost over the years since they started spinning. Without saying that what you are doing in spin class will let you eat whatever you want the rest of the day (terrible message!). Without reminding you, while you are spinning, how many calories are in a bag of chips (really, I had no idea!). Without assuming that this is the one time you’ve moved your body this week and she is the only one who is going to set you straight. That if you are not working hard enough in this class, you are not setting yourself up for success the rest of the day. This woman squeezed all the unhealthy messages that I try to stray away from in the short 45 minute class.
Again, I sweated my butt off and I loved that this was an option in my regular workday. I would take the opportunity again, should it arise. But I will also appreciate the vibe at Move with fresh eyes, or Torq or wherever else I go, where their fitness philosophy more properly aligns with my own.
I love that at Move, the coaches start off each workout asking how everyone feels. They encourage us at each class to be as strong as we want to be that day, and that by doing so we are badass. There is no talk of weight, except for what’s loaded onto our barbells. The only mention of food, is to make sure we re-fuel with something nourishing (with protein!), within 30 minutes of class. Their mission is to make us sweat, while listening to energizing beats (my classic rock heart wouldn’t mind a bit more of that now and then) and making each other smile as much as possible. I am grateful to have this type of place in my life, and for the reminder(s), to appreciate it!
Nicole Plotkin: law clerk, loves to exercise, eat good food, snuggle with her dogs, and her wonderful husband.