I love Chalene Johnson and PiYo, no…wait…do I?

First of all, if you know me, you know that I do not have an athletic build. Like not at all. A very long time ago, I was a soldier and required to be in decent physical condition, when I got finished with my commitment to Uncle Sam, I swore that I would not do push-ups or run unless Uncle Sam happened to be chasing me with a big knife.

Yeah, that goal was a little unrealistic, and as age and beer now made a home around my waist, I knew it was time for something new.

Last year, I took up yoga at my local, expensive gym. I loved the classes and enjoyed the strength and serenity, but had a difficult time fitting the classes into my busy life. My boss didn’t want to hear that I had to leave work to get my yoga on for 90 minutes, and paying for a membership to a gym that your boss doesn’t think you have time for is just dumb.

A good friend of mine, who has an amazing body (shout out to Alma!), told me about Beach Body and the new PiYo workout. Since it incorporated yoga, I was anxious to try it. I have now been doing PiYo for about six months, with an occasional slack off period. And as a disclaimer, my nutrition isn’t at all up to par so don’t look for any bikini pictures in this post!

Now I am spending 6 days a week with Chalene Johnson, who, as it turns out, is a home girl from Michigan. Every so often in the video, I can hear her accent so it feels like I’m working out with an old friend. Like having a lunch date with an old friend, sometimes you don’t want to go. Worse yet is when you go and her endearing traits grate on your last nerve. I get a little irritated with her when she is explaining how to get into a position that I am already in and I’m wanting her to hurry the Hell so I can get on with my day. I’ve heard all of her jokes on the discs, I don’t even pretend to laugh.

The PiYo flows are not as smooth as in Yoga and, of course, this irritates me too. Mostly because I don’t want to exercise in the first damn place. My least favorite flow comes on the Drench workout, it seems “jumpy” and does not flow as easily as I would like. There is an exercise called “Beast” that turns into a kick-thru. I hate beast and in the months I’ve practiced, my legs will not cooperate and kick thru, they instead choose to stay stuck like some kind of weird, unyielding “kickstand”.

At the end of one of the videos, Chalene tells me that the way I feel at the end of the workout should be the way I want to feel all of the time and I can achieve that by simply working out. Damn it, she’s absolutely right. I feel so strong and flexible because of PiYo workouts that I keep coming back for more, and more.

Recently I’ve incorporated a short, guided yoga session after my PiYo. As much as I hate love PiYo, I need the connection that I feel with traditional yoga, as well as the much needed Savasana (corpse pose where you are supposed to empty your mind). Hopefully, this will help my very special kick-thru leg get unfrozen and my monkey mind to be a little more grateful to my home girl on the DVD.

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