A few blogs ago a reader wrote in stating that she has started T25 which is another of Shaun T’s extreme workouts. You probably know him from Insanity workouts and as the maniac man that sweats like no other. My trainer started teaching Insanity classes at my gym and of course this trainer and I have a good energy, great communication and I trust him. Although I was not really sure Insanity was for me I jumped into a class back on Oct 18th and haven’t looked back. I am by far the oldest person in the class, so yes I am surrounded by 20 something men and women that can rock it on a bad day. However, I’m very confident in my ability to keep up so I was not intimated by the people in there. I also need to find my zone and prefer not be near anyone else when I’m working out. You might be thinking that means I’m tucked in the back of the room in one of the far corners. No, actually I go straight to the front of the class. The reason, no one else wants to be there. People will tuck themselves into the back of the room tighter than cattle as a way to “hide” for me I actually hide right out front. I get all the room I need and I’m literally sharing space with the instructor so as you can imagine I also get a lot of personal instruction along the way as well. I can always hear what he is saying, I can see what he is doing, I get to leave a puddle of my own sweat on the floor and not slip and slide in other people’s sweat and yes we sweat. If you are at all familiar with insanity it is just that, total insanity.
We start with a warm up and quick stretch and from there 45 minutes of intense cardio body work. We jump around a lot and although I am capable of jumping, squatting, maneuvering between standing and floor I also find that I need to modify. There is no shame in modifying and I learned within the first class that if you keep moving constantly throughout the 45 minutes it is actually better than giving all you can for 10 – 30 seconds and stopping altogether. Of course he loves when we give it all we can and I do but then I back off when I need so that I can keep a good level of breathing, moving and sweating happening the whole time.
I would say my favorite part of this class is that it is all done in the dark. Not pitch dark because there are windows but dark enough that you focus on yourself and you don’t really notice who is around you or what they are doing. You find your zone, you get your breathing right, you follow the instructions as you hear them and you keep moving. The voice gets loud right about at the end of the 2nd circuit and you really wonder if you can make it but you do. The reason you do is because the energy that the room gives you and the music you hear and the instructions given make you know that this will all be over very soon and you have left the day, the garbage, the words, the sweat, the angst all on the floor in the extremely gross puddle of sweat that is yours to be proud of.
Let’s be honest here for a moment. This is wonderful but it is also extremely scary. I have walked in and out of that class now 10 times in the last couple of weeks and every time I walk in there I feel a sense of insecurity but a confidence that one way or another I will finish. My body isn’t equipped for extreme work, so I’m told over and over but I don’t believe it. I believe this body really can do incredible things, but I also believe I have to be extra careful because an injury for me will not heal the same as an injury for a 20 something. I have taken great care not to injure myself year after year of exercise and even in Cross fit training I didn’t injure myself but I felt like I was pushing the limits of what was best for me. With this class, he trains me separate from the class as well and can really keep an eye on whether I’m doing it right or doing it sloppy and when I start to get tired he just says “focus” that is enough to make me think. Whether he is saying it directly to me or everyone there I don’t know all I do know is that start to focus on my form.
I have many weeks of this class and as I push and pull back and adjust, experiment and even doubt I will write about my experiences because this is a feat that I didn’t think I would take on but here I am and actually enjoying it. Nervous each and every time I walk in there but I keep walking in and keep finding myself at the front of the room staring myself in the face and thanking this body for what it is able to achieve.