I have the day off today and went with my sister to her gym (its the local fancy pants one) to do some of their short high intensity classes. We turned up and did a quick 1km warm up run on the treadmill then began our Zuu class. What can I tell you about the Zuu class? My sister had explained it to me and quite frankly it sounded more than a bit bonkers but she is super fit and was raving on about it so I thought why not give it a go? It is a class for Virgin Active gyms designed by Nathan Helberg, an Australian fitness guru and human movement expert. It is high intensity interval training using primal moves – push, pull, bend, twist, squat, lunge and locomotion in a unique 20 minute workout (though our class went on for longer than this). The gym explains that ZUU’s combined strength and energy class creates an exhilarating full body workout that blasts on average 300 calories in 20 minutes. Have fun being a bear or iguana – discover your inner beast. I am not entirely sure I discovered my inner beast though the class was hilarious and actually really hard. We did the following:
- Frog Squats: we bent our knees, keeping our feet flat on the floor, getting really low, with hands together (as if in prayer – for it to finish as my legs were on fire) squatting up and down quickly
- Bear Crawls: with our bums in the air, hands and feet on the ground, crawl forwards and then backwards
- Iguana: is basically the plank position which I thought yes I am good at this then he said to move alternate hands and feet forwards – impossibly difficult!
- Cobra: again a variation of plank where you stay very low in the plank position and then move your arms in the press up position almost side to side like the head of a cobra
- There was another like a snake where we were in the bear crawl position and then you drop your head to the floor then chest and then up again – not that dissimilar to the caterpillar you may see someone do at a drunken party but more focussed and without the booze
Don’t get me wrong I felt like a massive idiot – I forgot to mention the class is in part of the main gym and not a separate studio and as mortifying as that sounds not many people seemed to bat an eyelid at this strange class. Even when he had us in a push up position with feet on the mirror then walking up the mirror in this position followed by a bear crawl – nothing to see here, just your usual exercise class.
I can see why my sister likes it you absolutely know you’ve done a workout and it is fun! And harsh – it is done as a group so if any one person stops you all start again – no pressure and no wimping out!
After this short class we had some time to kill so went on the power plates – I thought you stood on these machines and it jiggled everything you don’t want to jiggle and somehow this is good for you? How wrong I was as my sister came over with kettle bells and we did indeed jiggle but started doing sit ups moving the kettle bells from side to side and mountain climbers on this machine. It did make me giggle and slightly dizzy and I had to stop talking as I sounded like Chewbacca from Star Wars from the vibrations!
Next up was the kettle bell class – full on go go go non stop kettle bell exercises which today focussed on legs. Lunges, swings, sit ups, dead lifts – you name it we packed it in to this class.
I finished with a 2k run on the treadmill after an instructor showed me how to use the trx equipment they have which had me fascinated – it was like a climbing frame with body resistance pulleys and handles – would not look out of place in the Fifty Shades of Grey red room of pain. I won’t lie I was slightly sad to leave the fancy pants gym – every time my sister has a guest pass I shall take advantage until I can justify the fancy pants monthly membership fee!
Now I am off on my bike! Taking exercising advantage on my day off – bike ride with my friend Minnie whose birthday it is today – Happy Birthday lady – and also who recently completed a sportive and came 3rd out of all the women – Minnie the Machine! Bravo lady!!