Years ago I was a pilates junkie. I'd hoped the workout would be a magic cure all for my gut so I signed up for classes at the Cherry Street Dance studio... back when there was a Cherry Street Dance studio.
I'd take the class everymorning with soccer moms and trained dancers... all of whom in much better shape than me. I remember apologizing to the instructor once for my lack of ab muscles. But I loved the class. Eventually it got to be too expensive for me to pay for the classes every month so I got aVHS workout tape.
I also took the Pilates class at Gold's with the awesome Russian instructor... but it's the same time as Body Pump so I don't go that often.
And... I still use it. Yes, I still have a VCR in my guest room. It's a DVD/VCR combo so suck it.
After reading about ways to thin my calves out I decided to break out my pilates DVD and start it up again.
So I popped in "Pilates For Dummies" and laid on a blanket in the guest room to get my pilates on.
First thing I realized... when I lay on the ground my dogs think that means it's time to lick my face or chew on my ponytail. So that's fun.
The workout is about 40 minutes and it works every muscle group in about 18 pilates workouts.
Since I was familiar with the exercises already, some of the explanations were a bit slow to me-- but definitely helpful if you've never done pilates.
The host looks like Jane Lynch on a cleanse, but extra perky. Watching her workout is also helpful, every motion shows the muscles flex in her body. I like to think my muscles are like that, albeit under a nice layer of fat.
One thing I love about pilates (and I'm sure it's true of yoga too, though I've never gotten into yoga) is that it's really just you and your body and your mind.
I sit in a quiet room by myself, in my sweats and torn up t-shirt and just bend and move and stretch my body to the brink. Stretching and breathing and working the muscles.
It's a totally different workout than hitting the treadmill or Body Pump. I think pilates works my body and gives my brain a chance to check out and recharge, if that makes sense.
So I'd highly recommend it to anyone intersted... and the Pilates for Dummies is a great first Pilates workout... I'm sure you can even find it on DVD.