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It’s Ok, Look at Yourself in the Mirror

June 3, 2011

…when you work out, that is!

I was reluctant to try group exercises classes for the longest time while I was living in Italy because I was afraid that I wouldn’t understand the instructor and get frustrated. Luckily now that I’m fluent in Italian I don’t worry about that anymore.

Today in class there were three women, models actually, and this is important because not only could they not speak the language much, but it was obvious they weren’t big weightlifters. My cardio class has a very healthy portion of free weights incorporated into it, which is what I love, but it can be challenging or downright frustrating for those who aren’t comfortable.

I snuck looks at them during most of the class by glancing at the full-wall mirror, and though I felt a satisfaction that I was able to keep up with the exercises while they weren’t, I wasn’t comparing myself to them but the person who I was two months ago when I started doing that class.

Picture by djwhelan

But while I wasn’t looking at them, I was looking at myself, my form, and my energy during class. At the beginning when I didn’t have real confidence over the moves, I continued to watch the teacher instead of myself and this was a big mistake. Watching yourself in the mirror helps you see if your body is actually doing the effort your mind thinks you are. After several repetitions or later in the class as we get tired, we can trick ourselves that we’re doing great, but looking in the mirror helps you immediately see if that is true or if your elbows are too low or your hands don’t go all the way up to the ceiling.

So yes, look at yourself in the mirror. Revel in it – it’s not vanity, it’s healthy!

And as for those models? I took them aside at the end and showed them the correct form for a few of the bicep curls and tricep extensions that they were missing, so that the next time they can get an even better result from their workout.

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One Comment leave one →
  1. June 3, 2011 4:38 pm

    I am a little guilty myself of avoiding the mirror! I am thinking I need to change that 🙂

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