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Archive for "Zumba"

Sweat in the City: Glow Up

Posted on February 13, 2019 by under Zumba.    

These next few pictures are from the first major Zumba event of 2019, Sweat in the City: Glow Up! It’s kind of a reprise of Joel and Sarah’s super successful Sweat in the City event last summer.

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I didn’t take a lot of pictures because I didn’t want to have to keep track of my phone (or risk losing it) so most of these pics are courtesy of other people.

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They did a blacklight/glow in the dark theme this time.

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I think Mara (middle) had the best outfit, hands down.

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Just a silly pic of me with Rose and Amanda.

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Fun group photo with local ZINs. (In case you were wondering, ZINs are Zumba instructors who are members of the Zumba Instructor Network.)

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I didn’t have to buy a special outfit for this event because I found I had stuff in my closet that actually glowed in the dark. It was a good thing too because I didn’t really have time to buy stuff.

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Here’s a pic of me and Brynden. Her shirt was bright!

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It was a sea of bright, glowing, colorful bodies!

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Here’s a pic of Amanda, Charis, and me that we took while we were waiting for our tacos at the restaurant next door after the Zumba party. We worked up an appetite! Two hours of non-stop dancing will do that. LOL.

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Here’s a pic of my tacos. Yum!

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I earned my tacos (and my Churn and Burn — more on this in a bit) that night. Joel and Sarah know how to throw a great party! I was bummed we didn’t get commemorative shirts this year but, other than that, I thought this event was even better than the last one. We actually had a live DJ (DJ Hashtag). Sweat in the City just keeps getting better and better!

Since Amanda and I live pretty close to one another, we decided to carpool to the event. The carne asada tacos were super spicy that night so we thought, even though it was freezing, it would be a good idea to stop for ice cream on the way home. Churn and Burn is on the way home and they’re open late — and Amanda had never been there! The stars just happened to align. Anyway, I figured I burned enough calories that day between my two Zumba classes in the morning, pickleball in the afternoon, and the two hours of dancing at Sweat in the City that I could enjoy some ice cream guilt-free. Actually, what am I talking about. I never need justification to eat junk. I enjoy all my foods guilt-free. LOL.

It was such a blast! I can’t wait until we do this again. Great job, Joel and Sarah!

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Year-Round Aqua Zumba

Posted on February 7, 2019 by under Zumba.    

When I completed Aqua Zumba instructor training at the LA Zumba Instructor Conference five years ago, I didn’t start teaching it right away. I was somewhat reluctant to jump in. I guess I was the same way with teaching Zumba (I just wanted to get discounts on Zumba wear and go to ZINCON) and all the other formats. I complete all the trainings with no intention of teaching. I just like to collect the licenses. What can I say? The buttons look good on my ZIN profile page.

Anyway, I got my license to teach AZ in January 2014 and I didn’t teach it for months. Later in the year, I started shadowing Alexa at Andover YMCA. I taught some AZ songs in her class that summer but I don’t think I actually got my own AZ class until the following summer.

My early years of teaching AZ were just okay. I taught it because there was a time slot available on the schedule but, honestly, I really didn’t enjoy it as much as teaching regular Zumba. Probably partly because I had to teach it in 100+ degree weather, outside, in the middle of summer. It was so dreadful.

I taught it on Thursday nights at 7:00 pm and on Saturday mornings from June to September. The Thursday night classes used to wear me out so much because of the heat. I preferred the Saturday morning classes. In the beginning we started at 8:30 am (now we start at 8:45 am), which wasn’t the best earlier in the year because the water would still be kind of cold. It was great for me though, because it was as hot.

The teaching conditions weren’t the best but the students seemed to really love it so we plugged on. I did have to get rid of the Thursday night AZ class eventually. Not because I was a wuss who hated teaching in the heat (I was perfectly fine suffering for the sake of the students) but because I started working on a project that required me to practically live in Topeka. I couldn’t, in good conscience, take up a prime class time slot and have to sub it out week after week. So, for the last three years, I’ve only been teaching AZ once a week on Saturday mornings, and only during the summer months.

As convenient as that is (I don’t have to worry about times when I had to be out of town for work), it posed its own challenges. Since I’m not teaching AZ the rest of the year, it felt like I was starting over every year. Each year, I would tell myself that I’d work on my AZ songs a month before my first AZ class for the year. I would inevitably procrastinate (because life happens and you get busy with stuff) and then I’d be frantically working on my songs a week before. Sometimes it would be a couple of days or the day before. Anyway, that feeling of panic and lack of adequate preparation wasn’t fun.

It took a few years but I finally wised up. I figured the solution to my problem was to teach AZ year-round. Then I wouldn’t end up forgetting my songs and have to frantically try to recall them the following year before summer session. Amazingly enough, that’s actually improved my attitude towards AZ. I’m enjoying it so much, I’d venture to say I even prefer teaching it to Zumba at times.

When my AZ classes ended at the Andover YMCA, I started teaching it at VASA Fitness (a new gym that opened in Wichita in July) — on the exact same day and time. The only difference is I actually have to drive in between classes, whereas before both my 8:45 am AZ and 10:30 am Zumba classes were at the same location. I have 45 minutes in between the two classes so having to drive from VASA to Andover isn’t really an issue. I have more than enough time to get to class (and even stop at Scooter’s if I need to). I’m absolutely loving the back to back classes. I’m glad that I get to continue this cadence in fall and winter.

Since I’ve been enjoying the back to back classes on Saturdays, I’d been trying to figure out how to replicate this on Sundays. As luck would have it (or perhaps it’s the Secret — also known as the Law of Attraction — at work), an opportunity presented itself at North YMCA. I started teaching AZ there at 12:30 pm on Sundays at the beginning of this year. It’s perfect because it precedes my 2:00 pm Zumba class on Sundays at the Andover YMCA.

I feel like I now have the perfect teaching schedule on the weekends. The only thing that could make it even better is if my back to back classes were at the same place. In the meantime, I’m just grateful for the opportunity to teach these classes to a bunch of lovely people who fill my heart with joy.

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Here’s a picture of my new friends at VASA.

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Here’s the lovely North YMCA group.

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I’m enjoying teaching AZ so much that I will even sub it on occasion. Here’s a picture from when I had to sub for Hideki at Northwest YMCA a couple of weeks ago. He and Amy were in Thailand. He always subs my classes when I’m at ZINCON so I figured I owed him. The roads were ridiculous that night because of the snowstorm. I actually asked Brian to drive me. Anyway, these two ladies came to class despite the horrible weather and we had a great time working out. They gave me some positive feedback that totally warmed my heart and made the 45-minute drive to the gym and 45-minute drive home so worth it.

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I’m finding teaching AZ rewarding in so many ways. Besides the positive vibes I get from the class, I actually get tangible (and yummy) rewards from time to time. This very nice man gave me a chocolate bar on Super Bowl Sunday. It was such a nice and thoughtful (and sweet, pun intended) surprise!

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I am loving every minute of my AZ classes and I’m so happy that I’m able to teach it year-round now. I hope I can keep it up.

If you’ve never tried AZ before, I encourage you to join us. It’s such an amazing workout and I promise you will have blast. Here’s where you can catch me:

  • VASA Fitness8:45 am, every Saturday (non-members can get a free trial pass here to join the fun)
  • North YMCA12:30 pm, every Sunday (there’s a $10 drop in fee for non-members but it’s good for the entire day for all Greater Wichita YMCA locations — just keep your receipt and show it when you visit another branch)

See you at the pool!

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Andrea’s Superhero-themed Zumba Birthday Party

Posted on November 26, 2018 by under Events, Zumba.    

We had a blast celebrating Andrea’s 32nd birthday on Friday night. Charis turned her normal Friday night class into a 90-minute Zumba party in honor of Andrea’s special day. We invited several instructors to teach and it turned it in full-fledged Zumbathon for the ages!

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Here’s the official instructor line up (from left): Johnna, Andrea (the birthday celebrant herself), me, Jessie, Rose, Francie, Charis, and Amanda.

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I wasn’t the only Wonder Woman. We had a few people dressed as Wonder Woman that night, including Danielle above. Jessie also wore her Wonder Woman head and arm bands. I love it when we have theme parties.

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We had a wonderful turnout and a few even stayed for the group photo after class.

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This one of me and Charis is one of my faves. She’s an excellent selfie-taker.

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After Zumba we kept the party going at Los Cocos.

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Here’s a video from dinner. It was such a fun night. I just love Zumba birthday parties and can’t wait until the next one!

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I Like to Be Busy But —

Posted on November 19, 2018 by under Zumba.    

It’s not unusual for me to have bazillion things happening any given day. On the weekends, it’s actually quite special when I can somehow squeeze a nap into the schedule. I enjoy being busy and having something going on at all times but this is getting ridiculous. I’ve always pushed myself to do as much as I can and I’m constantly testing my limits. I never thought the day would come when I’d cry “Uncle” but I think I may have reached it. LOL.

A typical Saturday for me kind of looks like this…

  • 8:45 to 9:45 AM — Aqua Zumba at VASA Fitness
  • 10:30 to 11:30 AM — Zumba at Andover YMCA
  • Party or movie in the evening

…with laundry, lunch, and a nap in between (not necessarily in that order). Oh, and a shower (two actually). Just in case you were wondering… I shower when I get up in the morning and I shower again after my Zumba class. However, I only wash my hair during the second shower.

I don’t sleep in and I’m always on a schedule of some sort. That’s normal. A couple of weeks ago I got this crazy idea in my head to take a Y-Box workshop and then we got tickets to a Tallgrass Film Festival screening and gala party, which I didn’t want to miss. That day looked like this…

  • 8:45 to 9:45 AM — Aqua Zumba at VASA Fitness
  • 10:30 to 11:30 AM — Zumba at Andover YMCA
  • 12:30 to 3:30 PM — Y-Box Workshop at Downtown YMCA
  • 7:00 PM — Tallgrass Film Festival

Lunch that day consisted of a bunch of snacks that Brian packed for me to eat on my way from my Zumba class to the workshop. It was a day when the ShowerPill really came in handy as I only had time to change shirts.

Laundry still had to happen among other things. I thought about giving up my afternoon nap but I was so exhausted. Brian and I napped for a bit and then didn’t want to get up. We were meeting Jenni and some friends at TFF and, while we are normally early to everything, this was an exception. Jenni and April both beat us there. And, to think, I didn’t even bother fixing my hair and I didn’t have time to plan an outfit — which I would have had time for had I skipped the afternoon nap. Rushing makes me moody but I think I probably would have been far moodier without a nap. LOL.

Then last Saturday, I found myself in the same situation again. This time, the schedule was even more hectic…

  • 8:45 to 9:45 AM — Aqua Zumba at VASA Fitness
  • 10:30 to 11:30 AM — Zumba at Andover YMCA
  • 1:00 to 4:00 PM — ZIN Jam Session at Eventum
  • 6:00 PM — Light Your Heart event at the Marriott

There was no nap this time. Although, I did have time to grab something at Sonic on the way to the jam session. At least I wasn’t hangry.

The jam session lasted until four o’clock but there’s always group pictures at the end so I stayed for that. I think it was 15 or almost 30 after by the time I got out of there. Oh, there was also a master class later that same day, which I had to miss because we were already committed to the other party.

It was almost five by the time I got home so that gave me an hour –tops– to shower, get dressed, and fix my hair and face. On the plus side, the Marriott is about 10 minutes from our house so it wouldn’t take long to drive there.

We got to the party a little after six. I walked in just in time to catch Mike (from Splurge! mag) leaving. Brian was still parking.

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Here’s a picture from that night. I have to say, for someone who took less than an hour to get ready, I didn’t look too bad. LOL.

I remember those days when it would take me hours to get ready for a fancy party but now I’ve gotten it down to an art. I can usually get ready in less than an hour. I think the Zumba cruise has had a lot do with this. I would always try to squeeze as many Zumba classes as I could in my schedule to the point where I would have 10-15 minutes to get ready for dinner. It was insane! But, as they say, practice makes perfect and I’ve had a lot of practice getting ready super quick the last few years. At this point, an hour is more than enough time for me.

By the way, here’s that group pic from the jam session that I didn’t want to miss.

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A few of us also took some additional photos because we were matchy matchy.

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Rose (middle) was the one who orchestrated making us triplets with Jessie (left).

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These girls are so fun. I just love them!

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Anyway, I think I was at a breaking point this weekend. This past Saturday, Brian asked if I wanted to watch a movie and I told him I just wanted to read my book and chill. I think part of it was that I was still put out by watching “The Spy Who Dumped Me” (perhaps the dumbest movie I have seen in a long time). That’s two hours of my life I will never get back. I was like, “Stupid movie or finish my book?”

I was reading Kevin Kwan’s Rich People Problems, the third book in the Crazy Rich Asians trilogy.

The answer was evident. I did some reading and also got a nap in. LOL. That also meant, Brian had some free time to play video games, which I though probably wasn’t an unwelcome turn of events for him. He really did want to watch a movie though, which we managed to squeeze into the schedule last night. He gave me the option to pick the movie this time and we watched “Mile 22” — which I really enjoyed. It made up for watching that last movie.

Anyway, that’s all for now. Until next time. GNG.

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Another Year Older

Posted on November 9, 2018 by under Life, Zumba.    

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Made it through another revolution around the sun. We didn’t do anything exciting this year because it wasn’t a big birthday like last year. We did, however, celebrate all month long and we’re still celebrating. Yeah. I milk the heck out of birthdays.

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One of my Zumba besties, Cristy, made some delicious Zumba-themed cookies.

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Then a couple of my VASA girls got me presents. Eylaf made a cat shirt for our Mala Mujer song with the cat moves. Luwam gave me some workout pants and bunny costume accessories. These Zumba girls are so thoughtful!

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It’s weird being the giftee because I’m usually the one giving gifts to people. For example, I had buttons and wristbands and cellphone holder thingamabobs for my Sunday class on my birthday weekend. At VASA I gave Zumba shirts to everyone who attended either all four Saturdays for Aqua Zumba or all five Mondays for Zumba. It was their reward for hanging with me during my birthday month. I couldn’t do that for my Y classes which are typically bigger than my classes at VASA so I had to settle for just little trinkets for the Y.

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I got Brian a box of delicious chocolates from Sweet Granada since Darcy and I were in Emporia for a meeting a couple of weeks ago. We hit the chocolate shop before heading back to Wichita.

Brian earned it for baking the most delicious brownie cake for me to take to my VASA Fitness staff meeting on my birthday weekend, among other things. He started making it on Saturday afternoon and we ended up missing the Halloween party in Mulvane because the cake took longer to make than we originally thought. But it turned out so delicious and was such a huge hit. It was totally worth it!

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Speaking of, Brian is making this brownie cake again for our annual Harvest Feast at work next week (Friday before Thanksgiving). He’s also baking me some brownies to take to my VASA Fitness staff meeting on Sunday.

Anyway, that’s pretty much it for the birthday recap. We will probably do something special next year for my second 21st birthday. This year was pretty much just another day, though. Until next time. GNG.

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