I tend to have two kinds of nights during my week: gig nights and gym nights. On a gig night you’ll inevitably find me front row, center having a one-woman dance party to whatever band’s rocking out. Gym nights I’m all business: elliptical, stairs, weights, sit-ups, push-ups, squats. My routine has been the same for years and I’m a solitary gym creature. Once the headphones are in, I’m tuned out and ready to put the work in workout.
The idea of combining the two and bringing my (often erratic) dance moves and secret passion for pop music to the gym with me certainly had me intrigued, so I headed to Body Rock to see what all the rock and roll, pop and lock and sultry salsa turned cardio dance-infused workout hype was about.
First up was Body Rock’s “Dance your A$$ Off” class, an hour long dance-a-thon that gets your feet moving and your heart racing, and keeps your cardio constantly changing with choreography that works everything from your arms to your abs. I admit, most of the time I kind of looked like that kid in the dance recital always going in the opposite direction of everyone else, but Nicky, the instructor and Body Rock co-founder, kept me pumped and convinced I would catch on. The class switches up the same songs each week, so after a few weeks your body knows where just to move with the beat. I was surprised how quickly I could feel the workout, and because we were constantly moving and mixing it up the hour flew by. A soundtrack of some of my favorite pop music guilty pleasures only sweetened the deal. The workout was a huge shift from my norm, and it was refreshing to be getting exercise in a room full of people having fun ratherthan just pumping iron. The dances each had targeted moves that definitely delivered body-sculpting results, from an entire chorus of squats, core-strengthening hip action and a whole new toned arm approach to “put your hand up in the air.” I left singing along to Beyoncé and thinking if dancing gives her those gams, I’d better book my next class and be on the way to buff (and maybe even more coordinated).
Loosened up and finally feeling like I was in my dance groove, I pulled a double session along with most of the class for “Fight Night,” a circuit-style boxing-inspired class. Pulling on my very own pink pair of Everlast gloves, I had no idea just how much my body was about to be rocked. From spurts of sprinting, sit-ups with punches thrown in between and a mixture of sparring and strength band muscle-building moves, the workout was fast paced from start to finish. Since Body Rock keeps their classes small, it really felt like I was in a personal training session with a few extra cheerleaders sweating it out by my side. The music blasted in the background; when Robin Thicke’s “Blurred Lines” came on, my overplay frustration translated to a nice little improvement in my one, two, right hook. There’s certainly a satisfying sound when the gloves connect with the boxing bag, and the class left me utterly exhausted and satisfied. I think I even invented box-dancing moves at one point. One thing’s for sure: the tunes and the trainer kept me hyper motivated, and my muscles certainly noticed the difference.
Body Rock’s atmosphere made me feel like I was part of a fitness family, and it wasn’t only interesting to switch things up, it was inspiring. The high-energy, pop-rock infused classes put a whole new spin on dragging myself to the gym, and while it may be a while until I’m stage or ring ready, I’m certainly ready to get my dance moves and boxing on more often. 85 Industrial Circle, Lincoln. 699-3409.
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