I think I've mentioned in the past that I work as a secret shopper for a small company. (No, not one of those that fill your inbox with spam, a local enterprise that's been around for a long time.) Most of the shops I perform are observations at bars and restaurants, but sometimes I get sent to check out seminars and well, very occasionally, I am asked to 'shop' a fitness chain.

Yeah, I know. Me + Fitness Chain = epic fail.

The shops are as a prospective member, so it's not like I'm trying to fake the ability to do a Zumba workout or take a spinning class. More like, I go do some calisthenics in the pool, talk to some people, take a look around and write up a report.

Anyway, they tend to call me in a pinch to do shops, especially when it's the end of the month and reports are due and no one else has taken the job. Which is how, every couple three months or so, I'm asked to pinch hit a location. That's what happened this week.

This one, though, required participating in a class, and well, there was only one class that I have medical clearance to attend, yoga. So for the first time tonight, I participated in a yoga class.

I went into it, fully expecting to wash out in about 10 minutes. I am no longer flexible, my body doesn't move the way it should and well, I hurt most of the time. My balance, an important component of yoga, is pretty crappy on a good day.

The first fifteen minutes were torture. It was all standing, with much of the time spent putting 90% of our weight on the heel of one foot. The rest of the exercise was fine, but the feet were screaming. In the middle section, I saw an opportunity to sit and still do the upper body portion-so I did and still got a decent amount of stretch out of it all.

Then somehow, I don't know exactly HOW, the hour was up. Maybe someone played with the hands of the clock when I wasn't looking, because the last thing I knew, we were 25 minute in and I blinked and the instructor thanked us for coming.

Maybe because I went into it expecting to do poorly, I surprised myself. While I am not as limber as I once was, I still was able to keep pace on everything. I never got out of breath or so far into pain that I had to leave. Modifying the tree pose and doing floor work isn't bad for my first time ever class.

And now, I'm trying to figure out how I can get back, because if I could keep pace as an out of shape, balance and flexibility challenged person, what can happen if I keep going?


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