Reforming My Workouts with the Pilates Reformer

One of Kansas City’s biggest half marathon events is in April, so you could imagine my excitement when I was able to get a bib before registration closed. This race fills up within a couple of weeks, and I jumped online soon as I saw it was time to sign up. My training was underway, and I had plenty of time to get those miles in. That was until my knee started screaming at me at the end of a 5K. A few days later, the pain continued. After a few professional opinions, I came to accept that my knees just can’t take the distance right now. My last week at the gym consisted of all upper body and a lot of boredom. It put me in a rut — a very yucky blah kind of mood. I felt like I was wasted my time at the gym each day and just felt like I diddle-daddled. Saturday was a good example of that type of day; I wasn’t enjoying my workout so I sadly went and bothered my husband during his.

Jake recommended Pilates to me. Mind you, I am a high-intensity, high-energy kind of person. I like quick, fast movements, which is just one reason why Tabata and circuits have always been a favorite of mine. With little motivation and a big pity party, I decided to give it a try. I scheduled a session that very instant.

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I recently had my introductory session with Mallory at Prairie Life Fitness. The reformer looked complicated and confusing when I first walked into the studio. The last time I saw a reformer being used was on an episode of The Kardashians. Not exactly a good representation of what this activity has to offer! After learning more about my body and what I wanted out of my workout, Mallory introduced me to the reformer. She showed me all the ways it moved and the importance of each contraption, too. I gained a quick understanding of how my body would be in control of the machine at all times. Mallory went through a long session of mini-circuits with me, giving me a shortened time at each placement so my body could feel as many different movements as possible in the time we had.

The hour I was there, we incorporated my entire body. I loved how long and strong I felt with each move. Mallory was very precise and consistent in correcting my form and helping me mentally and physically engage my muscles and movement. I gained a new level of respect for my muscles and was impressed at just how strong I felt once I slowed it down and truly connected with my movements. My form isn’t perfect — in fact, far from it — but I left feeling confident and excited. I was so curious about what Pilates could do for me that I signed up for another session!

I am so grateful that my husband pushed me out of my comfort zone and encouraged me to slow down and try something new. It has been a long time since I’ve tried something so new and so different. I really felt in control and am looking forward to my next session. I love this feeling, the feeling of confidence you get after a new exciting workout.

Each of us tends to get into a routine and stick to a pattern. When was the last time you tried a new activity? Tell me about it! —Jennifer

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