Saturday, December 5, 2015

Step-Styrka - 5th December (David)

Step-Styrka - Jacobina

Weekends are generally time for a "lie in" in our household. My daughter is awake 06:30 each week day to get to school in Uppsala, my wife is out the door early to commute to Stockholm and I have the fun task of waking the 2 boys (not the easiest of tasks :)), making sure they eat breakfast, get dressed, brush their teeth and make their 'mellies' before getting out the door myself. So Saturday mornings are generally a much more leisurely affair with a later start and lazy schedule before swimming school / strövare / cheerleading activities take place...for the kids that is, we're the trusted "taxi drivers" for the day! It's this kind of schedule on Saturdays or Sunday's which often allows me to get up really early and go out for a long mountain bike whilst the family are asleep and be back for mid-morning and impact very little on the day's activities.
This grey and windy Saturday morning I was up and at Form for Jacobina's Step-Styrka class. Again, another new experience awaited (remember it was 1995 since my last step class!). On Friday I hadn't felt too well and had gone to bed early hoping that I would be well enough to drag myself along this morning. 12 hours of sleep seemed to do the job! There were lots of energetic people about at Form and the place was buzzing with excitement. There were 2 classes running simultaneously and was lots of chatter in the changing room among some older gents if they are spinning or stepping today.
I introduced myself to Jacobina then went and took my step from the back of the room. Today, I opted for a position at the back so I had a good view of what was going on. We kicked off with some high energy music which immediately put a smile on my face and we started 'stepping' to the beat. As with yin-yoga, this class was 90% female and it was just myself and another gentleman who were partaking today...though it's definitely a class for EVERYONE. I loosened up and tried to 'flow' with the music and not feel so self-aware. Jacobina began by putting all the pieces of the puzzle together slowly so you got use to the steps and sequence before adding the next part, then the next part, etc. which built up in the end of the hour to a "crescendo of dance" to a mix of Svenska Schlager with Cara Mia by Eurovision winner Måns Zemerlöw being the main 'pump'. Mixed in on 3 occasions throughout the hour we hammered out 3x4mins of tabata exercises with reverse plank, one leg hip raises, press-ups & back raises....this'll be the extra strength part :)
I was left in no doubt in the final 10 mins that this was a true cardio workout. My VO2max peaked at 52ml/kg/min with a HRpeak of 182bpm (against a theoretical max of 177bpm). I left the class with a 'groupie picture' and a huge smile on my face.


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