One of the hardest parts about exercise is keeping yourself motivated during a workout. I can’t even count how many failed runs or workouts I have had at the gym simply because I had the option to stop.
Most universities offer a free recreational center for its students, and the University of Iowa has a beautiful one. Something I began taking advantage of when I became a student here was trying out the free fitness programs at the UI Recreational Center offers on a daily basis. The list is a long one. I have tried Boot Camp, Kickboxing, Step Aerobics, Cardio Core, and a bunch of other random ones. Although those classes are a great workout and the instructors motivate me to fight through the pain, I have a really hard time getting through the classes (the cardio classes are intense).
I had gone to Zumba classes a few times before in high school but I became obsessed with it after doing it here on campus. For those who don’t know, Zumba is Latin-based dance forms including cumbia, salsa, and meringue infused with modern dance and music of Bollywood, swing, and hip-hop.
Zumba makes it fun to work out. Yeah I know, fun and working out don’t usually go together, but it does with Zumba. The music is catchy and upbeat, and the moves are easy to catch onto. The 1-hour class goes by so quickly and you barely notice you’re working out because it feels like you’re just dancing. But it is a workout, you can lose 500-1,000 calories in just one Zumba class.
I joined in on a Zumba class taught by Claudia Aguirre, one of my favorite instructors at the University who is also a teaching assistant in UI’s Spanish Department. She told me why she began teaching Zumba and what she does to encourage participants. I also talked to Maria Lopez, a sophomore at UI, about why she loves Zumba.
So whether you love to dance or are just looking for a new way to workout, definitely check out a Zumba class. It’s offered at most gyms nowadays and here at UI is one of the most popular fitness classes.
Let me know if you love it as much as I do!