We have hit peak fitness fandom. What began with the odd juice cleanse and yoga retreat is now a media swarm of exotic "superfoods", nonsensical detoxing and daft workouts. At first it was exciting but now, to be frank, it's getting little bit boring. I am fed up of being told that I ought to look like a supermodel– no amount of training is going to get me VS standard.
Alas, we have lost our way on the fitness front– exercise is supposed to be about feeling good, but now it is the opposite. Go to one of London's It classes, and you'll know what I mean– "The models swear by it," they say, and then you turn up, clad in holey leggings and a crinkled top and end up panting like some sort of grunting pig amongst impossibly elegant gazelles (Gisele/Gazelle - see what I did there?) How that's ever going to make you feel good, I have no idea.
Sometimes I am tempted to throw in the gym towel, but it's the post-exercise endorphins that make it all worthwhile. Exercising ought to be fun, so ignore the celebrity trainers telling you what is wrong and right, and just do what you love. You have to take it all with a pinch of salt... Or spirulina, if that's your bag.
On the topic of good time fitness, I bring you FRAME's dance classes. Fresh from the ultra hip Shoreditch studio – the one that bangs out dance beats as you walk under the bridge towards Shoreditch High Street– the hour long sessions are so much fun, you hardly feel like you're exercising.
Inspired by music videos, the classes begin with a high impact warm-up before progressing to the step-by-step routine. Each and every session is as fun as the last, with a changing weekly theme to keep things fresh. I stepped in for Prohibition Era Gangsters (not a natural fit), but the week before was all about The Pussycat Dolls.
Don't worry if you can't dance to save yourself– the class is not intended to be taken too seriously. This ain't no Strictly, nobody's judging you, it's just about letting go and building up your confidence and coordination. If you're shy I'd suggest trying it out with a friend, but going solo is every bit as enjoyable.
The class isn't too strenuous, but I reckon you get as much out as you put in. If you really go for it, giving it all the necessary 'tude and not letting you hands hang there like Mr. Burns (guilty as charged) then you are likely to feel it a deeper workout. Initially I felt I could keep going for another few hours, but the following day my muscles were aching quite a bit from all that shimmying. It's official: I was having too much fun to feel the burn.
Also on the cards are 80s aerobics and ballet barre, but for now I can't see past this one. For me, it's all about nostalgia– dancing is one of my favourite things in the world, and I can't thank FRAME enough for turning it into an effective workout.
I may not be S Club standard just yet, but I am one step closer (to heaven baby.)*
Classes are £12.00, available to book online here.
*If you don't get this reference then you are too young to be reading my blog. Go and enjoy your youth while your body can still cope with two nights out in a row.