So you’re finally running out of excuses for not getting back into shape or for ridding yourself of those extra pounds from the holidays. My excuse card expired after Chinese New Year, there was really no real reason to pig out and even less reasons not to get my “flabulous” body back on the workout track. Plana Forma, which a friend remarked was the newest way of getting fit for those with ADD was next on my list to try, and I was prepared to hate it.
The thought behind Plana Forma was to keep you moving, all throughout the 55 minute workout, instead of high repetitions, there would be varied movements and minute adjustments that would impact your muscles in a major way. I was used to a lot of sports growing up and one of the main reasons I didn’t like joining gyms or classes offered by gyms was because once I knew the routine, I would get bored. This is probably also another reason why running isn’t a regular thing for me because the repetitive movement also makes my mind wander. But, enough with the excuses, I was looking for something to jumpstart the activity in my life (and to balance the yoga I was doing as a de-stressor) so I signed up for a Plana Forma class.
What are the supposed benefits of doing this class that combines moves from dance, yoga and pilates? I was told it would increase your strength and endurance, and improve your posture, flexibility and wellbeing. Oh, and it was mentioned that if I did it on a regular basis I would also have long, lean and sexy muscles, so why not? Couldn’t hurt right? I took one long at my very high energy instructor of the day, Julie, fit my “sticky” socks (so you could do the floor exercises without slipping), took a deep breath and slipped into class.
It’s a good thing that Plana Forma promises increased lung capacity because I could have sure used that during my workout. If your problem is same old, same old, you will not feel that at all in your almost one hour full of movement. There’s no time, as soon as your legs start to ache from plie type squats at the bar, you’re off doing something else that requires a different body part. Once your body adjusts to, let’s say, side bends while standing you are all of a sudden on the floor squeezing a play ball between your inner thighs while doing a series of abdominal crunches. It was pretty wild, and pretty tiring, but, I was far from bored, a far cry from my past attempts at getting gym-ified.
You also become more aware of your body as the class progresses, you feel what are your weaker muscles and even the less developed part of your body. Even when you’re on all fours doing some back stretches you are reminded to keep you core tight and controlled. When you are doing leg lifts, you have to be conscious of what the rest of your upper body is doing, and when you are told to go up and down on the bar by an inch, you really have to focus on that “inch” it makes all the difference. Your mind is connected to your action, and trust me, you pretty much forget about the outside world as you concentrate on exhaling, inhaling while you twist and turn to different positions that command your full attention.
Suffice to say, I practically melted to the floor once the final routine was over. I could feel all my muscles were hot and it was like steam was coming from all parts of my body as it had been reawakened to do what it was supposed to do, which was move. And to think, this was just the beginner’s class! One thing was certain, with all the movement (isometric and aerobic) I had done, calorie burning was a guarantee. Sure, I was probably going to be aching away the next day but at least it was going to be because I had finally gotten myself to exercise, in a super way. It is good to note that no two workouts are the same, so I was going to kiss boredom goodbye, and hopefully, any and all excess flab. There are classes every day, from morning to afternoon, even evenings so no excuses, even for me.
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For more information, plus schedule of classes, call 553-0870 or 0917-8094392 or visit http://forma-asia.com.
(All photos courtesy of Plana Forma)