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Welcome to the inside of my brain. Here, I share experiences, tips, tricks and fun things I've learned during my weight loss journey. 

  • Gail Ballin

HIIT me up.

It was Christmas Eve and all through the Y there was a buzz about a cardio GRIT class at 9:30 am.

GRIT is a High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) class that has a reputation for being incredibly challenging. I had been hearing about GRIT since the beginning of 2016 and I had a few friends who took the class on a regular basis. Every time sign ups would open up for a new session, there was a part of me that really wanted to try it just to see if I could do it and the other part of me screamed "are you friggin' kidding me? There is NO WAY you can do that!"

Earlier in the year, I actually got the nerve to sign up but the session I was interested in already filled up and I was unable to secure a spot. Negative Ninny-the part of me that lacks confidence and focuses on all things that are self destructive was absolutely thrilled. I didn't appreciate her negativity so I shut her up by intensifying my daily workout routine. I wanted to feel strong and confident in any physical challenge. I knew that one day I wanted to try GRIT and when that happened, I wanted to feel confident so I stepped up my routine, pressed harder, got stronger, faster and leaner.

I heard about the free GRIT session through several group classes the week prior. Each time it was mentioned Negative Ninny popped into my head and laughed 'yeah right...don't even THINK about it." But I did think about it. A LOT.

At this point, it wasn't about getting in shape anymore. It was more about whether I could actually do it without looking and feeling like a nincompoop.

I told Robby about the class as we usually work out together on Saturday mornings and he was all in.

We walked into the gym and my heart was pounding. I saw a few friends there who were also trying it out for the first time. The music was blaring the instructors were getting everyone pumped up and ready to go. I glanced over at Robby with what must have looked like sheer panic in my eyes because he said "you can do this."

I took a deep breath. Took my place and class began.

I will openly admit that it was tough. Probably the toughest physical challenge I've ever done. I was challenged, but I did it.

I did plank crawls and push ups, crab walks and high knee thingys. I even did a jumping jack plank exercise where you jump while you plank. I didn't know that was physically possible, but folks, it is!

I wasn't fast and I didn't do as many reps as the teachers and many of the other participants, but I did the exercises and I did quite a few of them. I wasn't graceful and lithe, but I was stronger than I ever thought possible.

When the instructor would demonstrate the next move Negative Ninny would say "ha! Yeah right!" but I would shut her down by getting into position and just doing it. While I was jumping and running, sliding and pushing I was thinking "OMG...look at me! LOOK AT WHAT I"M DOING!!" I couldn't believe it. I was beside myself with pride every time I completed a set.

At the end of the session I was panting and sweating and SO PROUD OF MYSELF.

Even Negative Ninny gave me a mental high five.

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