License to Zumba

Body Image, Events, Health & Fitness

As I’ve shared in a few blog posts, my weight has always been a struggle for me, but I’ve always led an active life. I became a little more sedentary during my college years, but thanks to the help (read: nagging) of a friend, I tried out a Zumba class. My friend, Veronica, was always going on and on about her Zumba class and how fantastic it was and that I really needed to try it. I don’t remember if I went just to shut her up, or if I went because I was really interested, but in October 2011 I finally gave in to her demands. The class was hard, I thought I was going to die. I was sweating, having trouble breathing, and trying my best to keep up with everyone else who seemed to know what they were doing (she made us stand in the second row). I was exhausted afterwards but there was something about the class that made me want to keep coming back. I told Veronica to keep nagging me about it, and I’d continue to come when I could. Slowly my schedule changed, I started making sure I never put anything on my calendar during my Monday & Wednesday Zumba classes. I began to get upset if anything got in my way of Zumba, and I even added in a third Zumba class on Fridays.

Since I started Zumba, not only have I noticed the physical changes my body has made (I’m down 3 dress sizes!), but I’ve also made great friends and now have a healthy outlet for my stress and frustrations. I’ve found all of the men and women who I Zumba with to be incredibly caring and friendly – they are such a great group and I love my Zumba family! It truly seems like just about everyone in our class has an incredible story, from losing hundreds of pounds and appearing on Oprah to my wonderful instructor Nancy, who nearly lost her life in a horse-riding accident.

So, a few weeks ago when the same nagging friend who got me addicted to Zumba, suggested becoming a licensed instructor, I felt compelled to join in on the fun (no, I too don’t know what I was thinking when I signed up). Veronica and I, along with our friend Sue, completed our Zumba instructor training last Saturday. It was a long day filled with exercise, class, and more exercise. I’m also fairly certain that I lost another dress size just from that day of working out!

Kate Retherford, Zumba Instructor

A year ago, I never would have expected to come this far with Zumba and personal improvements, let alone be a licensed Zumba instructor. The changes one can make in a year, professionally and personally, are incredible. We tend to get stuck in the moment and what’s currently happening and forget to take a step back and truly look at what we’ve achieved. I encourage each of you to look back at where you were this time last year or two years ago, I’m sure you’ll be able to see many positive improvements you’ve made, and it’s exciting to think about what you can look back on this time next year! Who knows, maybe one day I’ll teach a class, but for now I’m just going to be content with my accomplishment!

Sue, Kate, Veronica

Sue, me, and Veronica – exhausted after a long day but glad we did it!!