Hey guys! It’s been a while since I last wrote…so let’s have another go at it!
Since we last spoke:
1. We have traveled to Germany, and Amsterdam.
2. I have submitted a paper for publication-got reviews-resubmitted.
3. No-Pants headed back to the states.
4. Harry (read: fiance’s code name) submitted a paper-got reviews-is in the revise and try another journal process.
5. Work has progressed slowly but surely. I am working on a couple really neat projects with both experimental and computational components. All cycloaddition projects. Harry is also working on a couple cycloaddition projects. We are both continuing to try new and difficult things- which means that we fuck up and fail a lot. We have a fantastically supportive group, so we are lucky.
6. We almost got evicted because of our cat. We now have an illegal cat. It’s pretty cool. He meows only in viking. This is a story all of it’s own. I will probably update my ‘So you want to bring a cat to Denmark’ post at some point.
7. Danish classes have continued. Ny, jeg tror jeg snakker en lidt flere dansk. Jeg prove at snakker Dansk med mennesker i Føtex og andre firmaer. Vi været i biografen på weekend og jeg snakker kun Dansk med manden i kontoret. Jeg studie med netdansk online ny, og jeg tror det er rigtigt godt.
All these things are true and would be fun to talk about more, that is not what today’s post will be about. Today, we will talk about the gym I joined!
When January 2017 rolled around I, like many others, decided to give fitness a go as a new years resolution. Several of my lab-mates have memberships at Fitness World – a Danish mega gym. It costs about 200DKK a month (~30USD) which isn’t bad for what it provides. This cost includes all the equipment you could possibly need, and all the classes you could ever want. So far I have been going to 3-4 classes a week. I want to tell you a little bit about them!
On Mondays and Saturdays I go to TRX. I took a TRX class or two while I was in grad school, so I figured this was a good place to start. I must say, the Danes are very good at fitness. I consistently feel like I get my ass handed to me at these classes. TRX involves straps with handles that are hung from a bar. You do all the things you would normally do (read: pushups, chestpress, squats, lunges, etc…) but you use your own body as the weight. It’s very adjustable to the individuals level, which means there is a lot of variety in the folks who attend the class. Each class lasts one hour, and the instructors are great (they always have phenomenal music and have no problem explaining things in english for me if my limited danish fails me). My lab mate (code name A) often attends this class with me. This is what I think I look like in TRX:
This is probably what I actually look like in TRX:
On Tuesdays I have been going to a class called AbAttack. It is exactly how it sounds. It is 25 minutes of targeted and intense ab workouts. We do everything from side planks with weights to atomic sit ups. It’s hard to list all the specific exercises because there are so many. But, overall, this is a great, fast class. I am sweaty and exhausted by the end of it and consistently sore the next couple days. I dig it.
Thursdays I have been attending a class called Body Fit. It is classical weight lifting. My neighbors (who are also my lab mates – code names V and K) attend this class as well. We have a blast together. V and K are pretty beastly, so they motivate me to try harder. K is a snarky asshole, which works well with my typical attitude towards working out. We laugh a lot and the hour flies by. There is a fair amount of variation in the instructors for this class. They are all good, but of course I have favorites. I have never really done classical weightlifting before, so it is really challenging and I am enjoying figuring out what my limits are and what my body can do if I push.
Some Sundays I go to a yoga class. To be honest, it isn’t quite as difficult as I would like. It is, however, very relaxing and centering. I have done a decent amount of yoga so even though most of the dialogue is in Danish, I can keep up. Also, I know enough yoga that I can make the class more difficult with my own modifiers so I’m chill with the difficulty level. I know most people don’t go to yoga for the pure challenge. It is flow yoga – so think lots of different poses and the careful and practiced movements between them. Not so much the balancing type stationary yoga. They really stress the importance of focusing on the moment and being present. They also practice a much longer corpse pose at the end than I am used to. While it isn’t my favorite class, I still thoroughly enjoy it. I do wish they incorporated the ‘Ohm’ at the end but I don’t feel comfortable doing it alone in the class setting.
So my point is – I feel happier and healthier than I have in quite some time. I am really happy with my decision to join the gym. While it is subtle at the moment…I notice my clothing fitting differently. I see small changes in my physique. My mental stability is better, and my hormones feel more balanced. I feel stronger. I have not really started making changes to my diet – maybe in the next few months. We’ll see. I hope to start running again a bit over the summer months.