I went on holiday this year to Malaga as you may well know. I spoke about it enough before I went, while I was there … and hey 6 weeks on I’m still chirping on about it!
I have to admit that while I was extremely excited to see the girls and spend a few days away with them, I was dreading the prospect of donning the old bikini.
I know, I know how silly and vain.
I should [ like I was told 101 times] just embrace what I have. Lets face it I am 47 and don’t do any exercise at all . If I’m honest I hate the thought of exercise as much as doing it. I know I’m not fat; I am in my opinion slightly over-weight which is making me feel uncomfortable. I just didn’t feel ready to bare all, you know, the weight had been steadily creeping up along side the dreaded peri-menopause. I have back fat that I’m sure I didn’t possess at this time last year … and an extra chin. I generally felt a bit bleurgh.
I have nothing against larger people either. You do you. I just feel that I have personally looked and felt in better shape in the past when I was slimmer . Feeling the best version OF YOU , FOR YOU is what it’s all about isn’t it … no matter what your size.
I don’t want to be skinny and lets face it with my love of cake, chocolate and milky coffee off the scale that is never likely to happen. I just want to look more toned in order to start liking myself again.
That is when the lovely Louise from InReach Pilates came to my rescue. Like a bloody angel wearing lycra she was!
Louise has been teaching Pilates for 10 years and luckily for me is based in Sheffield . We had been following each other on Twitter for a while, chatting about random things. Those of you who follow me over there will know my mind works in mysterious and sometimes very odd ways.
Louise teaches Pilates under the name ‘InReach Pilates’ and through our various chats she offered me the chance to attend a course of starter classes. The prefect offer at the perfect time.
Her studio is based on Wilkinson Street, Sheffield, which isn’t too far from the Hallamshire Hospital. If like me you also panic about parking you’ll be pleased to know they have their own car park. Yes I am that person who panics they’ll not get parked when they venture somewhere new.
What is Pilates and what does it achieve?
Pilates aims to strengthen the body in an even way, with particular emphasis on core strength to improve general fitness and wellbeing. Pilates exercises are done on a mat and / or using special equipment. The apparatus can provide either resistance or support depending on the individuals needs.
There are a few reasons why Pilates appealed to me:
- Its slow and concentrated exercises.
- It should help me to control my cataplexy attacks by strengthening my ‘core’ to stop full collapse in future.
- It will improve my posture and flexibility
So far I have attended 3 beginner classes and I can honesty say I am a little addicted. Yes the girl who hates exercise is hooked, So much so I’ve been doing some of the exercises at home. Mainly the ones that improve balance. Having suffered with cataplexy for over 10 years now balance is something I really struggle with.
I love the fact that I stretch muscles I didn’t even realise I had. Stretching feels soooo bloody good. After the first week I was like I really, really want to do more of this. Who knew stretching left you feeling so exhilarated.
Another thing you can’t help but love is Louise and her style of teaching. She is warm, friendly and has a fabulous sense of humour. She makes you feel very much at ease. Some of the exercises are difficult and I’ve lost my balance on a few occasions. It would be easy to feel intimidated or stupid even but you don’t. Louise encourages you to keep trying and to just do your best.
Classes are intimate with 8 being the biggest class I have attended to date and due to the size of the room I doubt you could get many more than that in. This is good as it means Louise can keep an eye on you to ensure you are doing each exercise correctly ; if you are not she can remedy that.
Talking about the room you get a strange sense of calm when you step inside. The lighting is subtle with candles, lots of green succulents and soft music playing. Sometimes I look at my mat and think I could climb on and just go to sleep.
I highly recommend the classes. After the hour lesson I feel stretched, a lot more flexible and calmer. After losing mum last year I get anxious quite easily. I leave my class feeling ‘lighter’. I believe it’s just as good for my mind as it is for my body.
There are classes throughout the week but the class I attend is the Beginners / Improvers which is held every Tuesday evening 7.15pm – 8.15pm. Your first lesson is free so you can get a taste for it and see if it’s for you.
So what’s stopping you?
You have nothing to lose but everything to gain. I’m on my way back to body confidence and its feeling good.
For further details of classes , availability and costs you can contact Louise here :
Twitter – @inreachpilates
Instagram – @inreachpilates
email – firstname.lastname@example.org
Until next time, Tracey x
- Photos courtesy of InReach Pilates
- The classes were kindly gifted to me in exchange for a review