I am quite the advocate of physical fitness. I think it’s so important on so many levels. It makes me feel alive and powerful.

Not that I’m any good at it. I’m pretty terrible really. But that doesn’t matter. Anyone can be good at being couch potato, so I already have one up on those people.

So five weeks ago I embarked on a new fitness regime and its INTENSE. It comprises of boxing, running, pushups, sit-ups and skipping rope. When the trainer feels particularly sadistic, he brings out the ladders.

It’s awful. The trainer refers to us as troops. ‘Come on, troops! MOVE IT! You came here to train! Sit on your ass at home! Move!’

Dreadful. The only soldier I can wrap my head around are made of toast to be dipped in a soft boiled egg.

But at the same time, it is oddly fantastic and invigorating. And I get better with each session. And I’ve lost 5kg. 

But I am really terrible.

1) a good portion of the session involves jumping: star jumps, squat jumps, burpees…and there are mirrors everywhere. I have noticed that it’s not only my legs that do the jumping….my tummy jumps in tiny rippling rolls…and my boobs jump in spite of my sports bra. And don’t think they bounce in unison….oh no. The right always seems to be that little bit more ambitious than the left, leaping up before its partner. 

2) boxing is exhausting. And a little terrifying. I hit the punching bag. It swung back. With vigor. In my face. 

3) during boxing we need to find a partner at times. I once got paired up with a man. A very sweaty man. He was dripping. At a point he cocked his head back to get his fringe out of his eyes and it was like I ran through a sprinkler system.

4) towards the end of the session we do floor work to emphasize our core and sometimes I just lie there, a heap of exhaustion. And I have a little existential crisis and ask myself why am I here? In the grand scheme of things, does it really matter? In this infinite universe does it really matter if I can hold a plank position or not? Then the trainer screams ‘MARIE! YOU’RE NOT AT THE BEACH! MOVE!’ and I snap out of it.

It is probably the best workout class I’ve ever attended in my life. It is intense but doable and always different and definitely not boring. I honestly enjoy bits of it. And I’m reaping the benefits: I am already stronger and in better condition. 

Also, imagining the faces of people who bug me on the punching bag gives me a better workout.