Thursday, November 13, 2008

Fat-burn party (big time)


Some days are just bad days from the moment you open your eyes in the morning. Yesterday was one of those days. I cannot pinpoint any specific reason but things just kept going wrong throughout the morning, I had a bad hair day, anything I put on looked awful, and during class everybody laughed at jokes that I didn't even get. In order to cheer up I spoliled myself with a yummy (but oily) Chinese lunch, only problem is that when food is too yummy, I always over-eat, which I managed yesterday too, so u can just imagine how I felt afterwards: bloated and a bit annoyed. Drinking gallons of hot water to help the digestion didn't work, it just made me more bloated. Things kept going sour (I gave out cleaning orders to our ayi and felt like a jerk for that) and when it started to get dark outside I couldn't help but feeling relieved that the day was coming to an end.

I hadn't made it to the gym yet and thought about skipping it, but then I thought maybe it would make me feel a tad bit better to burn away that grease-bomb to lunch, so I decided to go to a don't-think-for-yourself-just-do-as-the-trainer-tell-you-spinning/rpm-class. At my gym, those classes are 45 min and quite... well, enjoyable would be the wrong word... but they are not bad! The trainers are really engaged in the class and I always end up almost killing me on the bike as I am one of those who actually 'adds resistance' when the trainer says so (rather than just touching the gear lightly with my hand). I used to be big on spinning before I got into running so I have done a fair deal of classes throughout my life, although not for the last 3 years, so my spinning-fitness isn't really on top.

I came to the gym around 6.50pm and realised that there must be something special going on as all the bikes had been moved to the large aerobic room, which has a larger stage than the usual spinning room. At the stage were 5 (!) spinning instructors looking as excited as little children on Xmas eve. "Great!" I thought to myself. "There's some special program today, just what I needed." But then I decided that looking at 5 guys in tight little bike pants instead of looking at only 1 guy in tight little bike pants was better than nothing, and located a bike. The whole room filled up really fast, so I guess I was quite lucky to even get a bike. There were a large group of people standing outside the room watching and I felt a bit guilty, seeing that I was oozing bad attitude, meanwhile they looked seriously disappointed they were going to miss out on the class. Oh well.

When the class started I realised I was the only laowai in the class, making me a bit self-conscious, as it had resulted in some curious glances, both from the trainers and the class. Then the class started and I didn't have time to spend more time thinking about that.

I noticed quite soon that this wasn't the usual spinning class. There were too many hints pointing towards other directions. First of all, the 5 trainers on the stage engaged in singing, cheering, a lot of 'ho-ho-ho' (Santa-clause like, although a bit more rough) and screaming in general. Secondly, the class followed. Yup. The whole class was singing along, cheering, ho-ho-ho-ing and doing a lot of other, slightly disturbing, noises that I don't know how to describe. The music was loud and the microphone headset was being passed between the 5 trainers in order to keep the spirit high. Some trainers even took to ground in order to cheer on the class and walked around, urging us all to SMILE and CHEER and "RACE FASTER, HARDER; STRONGER...."

They had said in the beginning of the class that this was going to be a bit longer than usual classes. Therefore, I wasn't surprised that we went over the usual 45 min time mark. I was pretty sure we were going to finish after one hour, so therefore I made sure to use up all my powers on the 'hills' and 'races' we were told to take part in, and when the clock hit 8pm, I was done! My legs and bottom were killing me, my sweat towel was soaking wet, my water bottle was pretty much empty, and I felt ready to go home. We did 2 minutes of stretching on the bikes and I was just about to jump off when the trainers suddenly turned up the volume and urged us all to start climbing a new hill. Another hill?! It must be a 'cool-down' hill, I thought, and took part in the climb.

Only though... it wasn't. There wasn't any cool-down because the class hadn't finished yet. In fact, it hadn't finished by far. For TWO hours this class went on, my friends. TWO HOURS!!!!!!!!!?!?! That's insanely long. That's longer time than it takes to run a half marathon. That is painful.

Seeing that I had completely killed myself and used up all my powers during the first hour, the second hour was a long, painful climb. I kept glancing at the clock, wishing for it all to be over. (maybe some of you are thinking: "why didn't u just get off your bike and leave?" but come on, I couldn't just do that... I hate giving up!) What didn't make matters better was the fact that there was a guy from the reception working his way around the room with a large, fancy Nikon camera, snapping happy shots of sweaty people on bikes. They Chinese people loved him, and kept posing, and doing the v-sign (and fixing their hair) as soon as he came near them. But who do you think this guy wanted to snap most of everyone in the room? Well, me of course, the only Blondie on a bike. And I was NOT up for being photographed, I never have been when I am doing sports. (I think there is a time and a place for everything... sweaty snaps are not my cup of tea, I mean, u should all know that if you've seen those awful photos of me running). I kept waving for this guy to go away but he just smiled and waved back and snap, snap, snap.... I swear to God that if those photos end up on some gym wall I am going to have a nervous breakdown. It should be illegal to take photos of people at the gym!

After two long and painful hours the class was finally over. I don't know if that was because two hours was the set time limit, or because of the fact that the local police payed the gym a visit. Yup. That's right. The police came! Apparently the music/noise level was too high so they came into the aerobics room to 'inspect' what was going on (Gosh, the streets of Suzhou must be boring to watch?!). When they realised that we weren't robbers, but just eager fat-burners they left the room, but remained at the gym. In fact, they were still standing outside the room (a big bunch of them, maybe 5-7 guys in their uniforms?!) when we some moments later, soaked in sweat, walked out. They grunted to the sight of us, but I was too exhausted to snap back at them.

So yeah.. that was my Wednesday night. A two-hour spinning class at the gym. Not your every-day-effort, but I guess in a way it came at a good time. Yesterday ended up not being a complete 'awful day' but just 'very awful' but with some serious work out at the end. And that greasy lunch (and bloated stomach) is long gone. Only thing is that today I can barely sit down without twisting my face of pain, but I guess that's a sign that the work-out worked out. :) In the future, however, I think I skip those new-release/hardcore spinning parties...

12 comments:

Fransyskan said...

My entire week has been like your day!! Courage, as we say in french!!

Anonymous said...

Haha, extremely plesant reading, and I feel bad for not going to the gym yesterday, instead abusing the chocolate fountain at a restaurant and ending up getting a really bad stomach ache.

I would never ever be able to do something like that. I really hate spinning. Even though it is a great form of training. Still it is extremely boring. You should be proud of yourself. Vatternrundan next year :D?

Jonna Wibelius said...

fransyskan -a whole week?!?! Gosh, I would have crumbled if every day was like yesterday... I hope u r feeling better soon. Bad days should be banned!

Anonymouse -absuing the choc fountain (mowha!! This is giving me serious cravings...) at a resto sounds like 876846856 times fun than being stuck in a small room on a spinning bike for TWO BLOODY HOURS with 30 Chinese... I don't love spinning either, I'm just a bit in love with the feeling afterwards.... when it's time to reward uself... ;) (and u r right.. it is kind of boring. The men in tights make it a little bit more fun, however) What's 'vattenrundan'??? Never heard of?

Jonna Wibelius said...

Oh, now I saw u wrote vatternrundan (v├Ątternrundan) and not vattenrundan.. hahaha... Are u MAD?!!! I think I'll stick to running from now on... :)

Emil said...

Hehe, yeah, I was worried for a while.

Yes, chocolate fountain was extremely awesome. Not just ordinary awesome, but super awesome. I made chocolate ala mango, grape, pear, fish, ice, cake etc etc.

Though I will go for some spinning tonight. Cycling when it was two degress, raining and windy with no water proof clothes was not so fun today. I like spinning alone or with some friend though. Spinning classes is awefull, but maybe a bit more efficient sometimes :)

You should really be proud of hardcore spinning for two hours, it is much more than I would ever handle.

Jonna Wibelius said...

Emil -but u r the pro... of course u would have outshined everyone in that spinning class?! I have to say that I was very impressed with the effort people put in, however. NO ONE left their bike during those 2 hours?! (another reason that made it impossible for me to do so...). I guess it would have been more fun if I was there with a friend. Unfortunately I don't know anyone who likes spinning! Most people make faces when u mention it to them...

As for the chocolate fountain (u had me drooling for a while) "I made chocolate ala mango, grape, pear, fish, ice, cake etc etc."

Fish? Fish?! chocolate fish!??!?!

I've stopped drooling. Is that some odd dong-bei combination I should know about before I head to Dalian tomorrow?!

emil said...

No. Just a moment of insanity.

Dalian is not real dongbei anyway. It is actually a pleasant place to go :P

Jonna Wibelius said...

Emil -wow, u r one of the wild kids... ;) But really, now u have to tell me.. was it good?!?!?! Would u recommend it? What kind of fish was it?!

Being a serious choc-o-holic, I am always open for new combinations. This one I would have never thought of myself though...

shopgirl shanghai said...

I LOOOOOOOVE the spinning classes in Shanghai, they are much more engaged and the music is much better and it's more cardio than muscle building which I like.

So yes, the class must have been tougher for you than rest of the class because they have hardly no resistance in order to cycle very fast....

but still you get soo sweaty and feel GREAT afterwards.
I personally feel that I lose much more calories doing a spin class in Shanghai than when I'm doing a spin class here in Sweden...

but when it comes to bodyjam, bodycombat, etc. then it's much tougher in Sweden than shanghai.

Anonymous said...

Respect.

I have nothing but respect for someone who can take a crappy day and turn it into an interesting and humourous blog entry.

Adrian

Jonna Wibelius said...

Adrian -work outs can (most of the time) turn bad days into, if not good, then at least 'bearable' days... And they are always very inspiring -speaking from a writer's perspective. But thanks for the compliment! :)

Theresa said...

Hi, so glad to have found your blogs. Im moving to Shanghai in August. currently live in Thailand and love all Les Mills classes. Im looking for a gym which runs these classes. Im moving to Pudong but dont mind using the metro. can you help, I will go crazy without Les Mills