Archive for "Zumba"
Remember how I was so happy that I was able to teach Zumba on January 1, 2016? If not, here’s a short video to refresh your memory.
Guess what, New Year’s Eve 2016 fell on a Saturday so I got to teach a class on NYE also. I love how I had the rare opportunity to start and end the year with a Zumba class. It couldn’t have been more perfect.
These are just a few of the people who stuck around for a group photo following our NYE Zumba class at Andover YMCA.
SIDENOTE: There’s actually a second Zumba cruise coming up which sails in April. If you would like to go, please use my affiliate code (461028) when you book to receive $25 onboard credit.
This truly was the year of Zumba for me, actually. Not only did we get to go on the Zumba cruise, I also got a tour of Zumba Home Office while on a work trip in Florida. And, not only that, I also got to go to ZINCON again!
The significance of last year’s ZINCON is that it was the 10th anniversary of the Zumba Instructor Network (ZIN). However, I am very much looking forward to going to ZINCON again this year because it will be the 10th anniversary of the convention itself. (There was no convention during the first year of the Zumba Instructor Network. The first ZINCON didn’t happen until the year after.)
One of the highlights of this year’s ZINCON was meeting performer Max Pizzolante and his wife Maritza Bustamante. He is the singer behind a couple of songs in my current Zumba playlist: Quien Quiere Bailar, Vive Y Baila.
I actually plan to add another Max Pizzolante song to the playlist very, very soon. Stay tuned, Zumba pals!
Vive Y Baila is one of my favorite songs to do in Zumba class right now so I’m posting a video of it here for you:
Besides traveling for Zumba, Brian and I got to do some traveling for work as well.
- I got to visit Alliant Energy in Madison, WI and Spire Energy (formerly the Laclede Group) in St. Louis, MO.
- I had the opportunity to see the amazing and super hip PwC Experience Center in Florida when we were there for a Customer Experience workshop. (It was actually on this trip that I accidentally came across the Zumba Home Office. It was the best work-trip coincidence ever and I took full advantage of it.)
- I attended my first EMACS conference, which incidentally was held at the same hotel that we have ZINCON every year so I actually got to stay at the Hyatt Regency Orlando twice in the same year. It was a super fun trip because we managed to squeeze in a visit to Cocoa Beach before the conference started, except we barely got out of there before Hurricane Matthew hit. That was exciting.
- Brian attended an Edward Jones conference in St. Louis.
- I’ve also been traveling to Kansas City for work since September and it has been pretty enjoyable.
Other trips we’ve made this year include…
- A trip to visit the Orbases while they were in Fort Worth. This is significant because we hadn’t seen the family in years and this was our first ever road trip with the dogs.
- A trip to Kansas City which included tours of the Roasterie, Boulevard Brewing Company, and One Light Luxury Apartments.
Brian and I also had the privilege of attending or helping with several amazing events/benefits this past year:
- Heart Ball (American Heart Association)
- Haus of Brews (Andover Rotary Club)
- Bowl for Kids’ Sake (Big Brothers Big Sisters)
- Tenth Annual Brew Ha-Ha at Flint Hills National (Big Brothers Big Sisters)
- YMCA Champion Social (Greater Wichita YMCA)
- Polar Express Literacy Event (Child Start)
- Museum of the Undead (Exploration Place)
- Light Your Heart (Heartspring)
- Hope in Spring Gala (Kansas DUI Impact Center)
- KANSEL Team Trivia (KANSEL)
- Zumbathon for Jen Cole, LLS Woman of the Year Candidate (Leukemia & Lymphoma Society)
- Painting a giant US map at Prairie Creek Elementary (Old Town Rotary)
- Celebrity & Chef Cookoff (The Orpheum Theatre)
- The Pando Initiative 25th Anniversary Gala (The Pando Initiative, formerly known as Communities in Schools)
- Zoobilee (Sedgwick County Zoo)
- Dudegrass Six (Tallgrass Film Festival)
- SALSA 2016 (WASAC)
- Color Party X (Wichita Art Museum)
- Wichita Asian Festival (Wichita Asian Association)
- Rockin’ the Roundhouse (Wichita State University)
There are so many worthy causes out there and these organizations need our help. I put a link to the organization that hosts or benefits from the event. I recommend reaching out to someone this year if you would like to help.
Although 2016 was a very busy year, we still managed to squeeze in some fun times with friends: murder mystery party at the Larneng’s, private dinner prepared by Chef Jason (also at the Larnengs), CRC picnic, painting at Pinot’s Palette, Tom’s housewarming party, Holly and Meader’s wedding, Pokemon Party Bus, going to a bunch of Christmas parties, and NYE at Hideki’s which I have yet to even blog about. (I’ll be posting it next so check back.)
Nickira and I got to do a bunch of fun activities as well like watching Willy Wonka at the Orpheum, Fall Fest at City Arts, and Winter Mania at the Wichita Art Museum. We got to spend lots of time with grandma, which we will be able to do even more now that we’ve moved her to Victoria Falls.
This year was also a banner year for us in terms of attending music theatre performances. We only missed one MTW show and even got to see Wicked for the first time. I know it’s unrelated but we also got introduced to a new band that we just love: Jared & the Mill.
I found an amazing gym across from the office (next to the grocery store) a couple of weeks ago. Here are some pictures that I took during a brief tour.
I was a bit worried about finding a suitable gym with group exercise classes. We get really spoiled here in Wichita because we have the best YMCA facilities in the entire nation. Our YMCA facilities are ten times better than most health clubs. And we have fantastic workout classes.
I went and checked out Onelife on a Monday so I could get a tour and also check out the Zumba class. The class was just okay. Definitely not like the ones we have here in Wichita. We are so spoiled because we have the best of everything here.
The facility itself was fabulous, though. I loved the modern look and feel and all the equipment looked brand new. I’m not sure how long the gym has been operational but, from the looks of it, they haven’t been open a long time because everything still looks shiny and new. Either that or they take really immaculate care of their facility. The Zumba class might not have sold me (I’ve never been a fan of the 45-minute Zumba class and that’s what they have on Mondays) but the gym itself and the friendly staff blew me away. Plus, the proximity to the office (across the street) was just icing on the cake.
Of course, I couldn’t justify paying $45-55 a month for a gym membership that I could only use three days a week (if that). I think if there was an hour-long Zumba class everyday that I could hit, then it would probably be worthwhile. At $5 per class, three times a week, four weeks a month that comes out to $60 so I could rationalize it. It wouldn’t be worth it without the classes because the Marriott downtown has pretty well-equipped gym. I could always just work out there if I just need treadmills and weights and such.
However, I’m the kind of person who finds opportunity where there are challenges and obstacles. So guess what I did the very next day. I worked on my Zumba resume before bed. We had a work dinner that night and I actually didn’t get back to the hotel until almost ten o’clock. Then I worked on my resume for a couple of hours while Brian and I video chatted.
Brian was like, “It’s almost midnight, baby. Go to bed.” But I couldn’t go to bed until my resume and cover letter were just right.
This is the product of my effort. I figured if I get a Zumba gig out of this, great. I’ll actually get to do the kind of workout I want to do, which isn’t currently available to me on the days I need it. If not, no big deal. I’m a big girl and can handle rejection.
It sounds like there’s not a great demand for Zumba right now at their gym but I’ve always had an “if you build it, they will come” mentality about things. I’m convinced the demand isn’t there for the type of Zumba class that isn’t currently offered which doesn’t have “party-like” atmosphere like the ones offered here in Wichita. The music selection is quite different as well so the experience is totally different. It’s had to convey that it words though so I’m trying to set up a demo class so group exercise director there can experience the difference. It’s a lot like the sunsets in the Flint Hills. Words cannot describe it. It just has to be experienced.
So anyway, this is probably not the most brilliant idea I’ve had in a while (because, you know, I’m full of brilliant ideas – LOL) but sometimes you just have to follow your gut. Wish me luck!
Here’s a recap of our short but Zumba-filled holiday weekend.
On Friday night Missy got everyone together for Zumba with Jenny at East YMCA at 6:45 PM followed by dinner and drinks at Carlos O’Kelly’s. I would have missed all of the messages had I not taken a day of vacation. I’m glad I was home to I could join the fun. The craziest part is that, after she rounded everyone up, there were more instructors in the class the regular students.
After teaching my Zumba class on Saturday morning, we ferociously prepared for Jay and Becca’s visit. It’s such a privilege to host them for dinner because they’re busy travelers and we rarely ever see them anymore.
It was a productive evening.
Sunday was “Labor Day Fun Day” at the Larnengs’. Brian and I arrived at the party late because I had to teach my Sunday afternoon Zumba class first and then we still had to take care of the dogs. I’m glad we went though because we had a blast.
It had been a while since Brian and I played poker. We were both really rusty but had fun, nonetheless.
On the plus side, I’m glad we didn’t end up doing well because we would have been up late playing poker. And we couldn’t have that because we had an early morning commitment, volunteering for the Labor Run.
Brian actually did not want to volunteer this year because we didn’t receive any kind of communication and had no idea what was going on. But I’m glad we did anyway because it’s for a great cause. And, the volunteer shirts were nice. 🙂
It was a little bit chaotic. I’m not sure that any of the volunteers knew what they were supposed to do. No one had assigned jobs ahead of time. Heck, I had five different jobs in 10 minutes.
I’m thinking I might listen to Brian and refrain from volunteering for the Labor Run next year. We’ve given them our holiday weekend the last few years. We hadn’t been able to go out of town because we’ve had to be at the park first thing in the morning. I’m thinking it’s time to start enjoying our Labor Day weekend again. By not committing to the Labor Run, maybe we can actually go out of town for a change, which is something we haven’t done in forever — at least since we started volunteering for the event.
After the Labor Run, I managed to squeeze in a Zumba class led by Melissa and Todd at South YMCA, which was awesome.
I have been pretty lazy about my workouts lately so getting Zumba in four days in a row (Friday with Jenny at East, teaching my own classes on Saturday and Sunday in Andover, and then with Missy and Todd on Monday at South) was fantastic. It really got me thinking about how much I love to take Zumba classes and maybe I should put a schedule together so that, whenever I’m in town and have some free time, I can easily find a Zumba class. I used to keep a map of all of the Zumba classes in the Wichita area but I haven’t updated it in years. It’s probably time to dust it off and work on it again.
In the meantime, here’s the helpful Zumba schedule I put together:
These are all of the weekday evening classes, ideal for people like me who work their butts off during the day.
These are all the classes on the weekends (Friday included).
Don’t fret if the writing is too tiny. You can click on these pictures and then you can zoom in. Also, I will post links to the printable PDF versions so you can stick them on your fridge or board at home or in the office. I hope you guys find these helpful. I know they will help me a ton. Until next time!
Andrea and I unintentionally matched last weekend. It has inspired me to get themes going in Zumba class.
Oh, and I have a few more of these Zumba World Tour buttons. If you would like one, just come up to me in class. I’m giving these away until I run out of them. If you want all 11 designs, you can get the entire pack at Zumba.com. Remember to use affiliate code CHING any time you order so you can get 10% OFF.
Here’s Brian sporting his new Zumba sweatpants on our final full day in Orlando…
My final session of ZINCON 2016 was Sabor Cubano with ZES Betsy Dopico and Team CUBA. Here are a couple of videos from the demo they did at the beginning of the workshop.
The demo was meant to give us a preview of the rhythms prevalent in Cuban music: Rumba, Son, Cha-Cha-Cha, Mambo, Timba, Conga, and Cubaton.
I know Betsy said it wasn’t meant to be a show but it was a great visual presentation of the history and development of Cuban rhythms.
Here’s one of my favorite photos from the session.
This is a great one of Betsy up close.
I went straight to the closing session after Sabor Cubano because I knew the line would be long already. I was right. This is as close as I could get. The picture above is of Zumba CEO Alberto Perlman, also known as AP. I actually got a picture with him in 2013, when I attended my very first ZINCON.
After the closing session, I went back to the room to help Brian pack because we have an early departure the next day. While we were packing, I showed him my impressive ZINCON hotel room keycard collection.
All the way up on the 26th floor, we could hear the loud music coming from the Hyatt Regency pool below. It was so tempting to go down there. However, we were responsible and did our packing and then got ready to meet our old neighbors Jim and Karen for dinner.
Brian and I walked over to Pointe Orlando, where we were meeting Jim and Karen, a few minutes early so we could do some Pokémon GO hunting. LOL. This seemed like a nice place to stop and catch some mons while we waited for them.
We initially talked about going to Cuba Libre because I had a hankering for Cuban food (specially after my Sabor Cubano session that morning) but they weren’t open yet and we were hungry.
We ended up eating at the Pub Orlando instead. Brian ate there without me three years ago. He walked over there while I was in one of my sessions.
I was originally bummed about not getting Cuban food while in Florida but the fabulous dinner company more than made up for it. Also, the Pub has an extensive beer list which was great for these two.
Jim ordered the fish and chips.
Brian had the ham sandwich on a pretzel roll, which is his favorite thing to get there. How you have a favorite sandwich at a place you’ve only been to twice in your life is beyond me. He says it is his favorite, though.
Karen and I ordered the exact same thing: the chicken tenders with the side of mac and cheese. The mac and cheese was amazing. I would order it all again.
It was so wonderful to see Jim and Karen again. We’ve missed them so much.