As a gym rat in my previous life, I thought a "real workout" only came from blood, sweat & tears. I would wreck myself at the gym, doing HIIT class after HIIT class, lifting the heaviest weights my little Spongebob arms could handle, walking out of the class wobbling like a newborn giraffe. The rest of the day I'd keep myself awake with coffee, too tired to go out with friends after work because I could barely stay awake past 8pm. My adrenals were shot, and if I had a dollar for every time I muttered "I'm exhausted" to myself, Richard Branson would be working for ME.
Enter, pilates. Personally, I thought of myself as too much of a potato to ever set foot in a pilates studio. I imagined being surrounded by a room full of graceful swans, gliding around the room with their lithe dancer bodies. No potatoes to be seen. So when I was approached by MNT Studio to join their #MNT10 challenge, I was initially a bit hesitant. But because potatoes have literally nothing to lose, ya girl went for it.
The challenge that I signed up for required completing 10 classes in 14 days. And because planning ahead is a skill that comes, shall we say, less than naturally to me -- I didn't realize I was leaving for New Zealand in 10 days. So that meant 10 classes in 10 days. Good luck, Ali.
The first few classes, my body was shaking like a polaroid picture (vigorously). But by day 4, I was actually gettin' ahold of this whole pilates thang! I continued my membership for the rest of the month, and have never felt stronger.
How my body has changed
My body type is naturally very athletic and I tend to build muscle easily, but I wanted my aesthetic to be a little more feminine. Pilates tends to strengthen the smaller, stabilizer muscles and focus a lot more on flexibility -- resulting in a longer, leaner look.
How my workout routine has changed
Now that I've done Pilates exclusively for the past month, I'd like to add in some cardio and yoga to make my routine more well-rounded. Because with anything, #balance.