New Year… New Shoes!

Ballet shoes to be exact. 2016 and we’re already over halfway through January. My brain has only just stopped thinking about Christmas cake and crackers and I’m already being bombarded with Valentines Day reminder emails and don’t even get me started on Easter eggs in supermarkets. The unfortunate side of being in stores EVERYDAY for work.

The minute you hit January everyone suddenly forgets over Christmas they drank enough Baileys to sink the Titanic and ate their weight in turkey. Suddenly they’re a fitness finatics, with a different class everyday. All their meals are blended in a Nutribullet and posted on Instagram and when they forget what food tastes like they reach for the kale – all while being able to tell you the calorie content of anything you eat. Smugly. This year I decided to embrace the non-forgiving Lycra and chug down the Chia and beetroot smoothie, all the while trying not to gag.

My first attempt alongside dieting was to embrace the fitness classes – oh joy. After trying to book some at my Virgin Active gym, and finding them all filled (yay January), I stumbled across Yoogaia on the App Store. Essentially this allowed my lounge to become a Yoga studio, where I can either stream live classes and switch my webcam on so the teacher could make corrections, or catch up on past classes. I signed up for a free 7 day trial and then found codes on Instagram to extend my trial (impressively to 97 days). I instantly fell in love and went straight out to get a yoga mat, taking one or two classes a day.

I’d always wanted to get into yoga but with classes too far away it didn’t seem an option – until now! Which made me think of other things I’d given up hope on. Top of my list, ballet. I’d always wanted to take slashes but never got the chance as a child. Fast forward to when I was 19, after a google I attended a local ballet close recommended as suitable for my abilities by the teacher. This one class put me off for another five years. Surrounded by young stick thin teens and girls I knew from school far more advanced than myself, I was out of my comfort zone. Coupled with no guidance or advice from the teacher, I had no intention of ever going back and therefore hung up my proverbial ballet shoes.

Back to last week, I contacted several local dance schools enquiring about adult beginner classes and bingo one had an Adult new to ballet class once a week. Nervously with my last class in my head I attended my trial class last night, head filled with images of young slim dancers, far more advanced than myself, wearing pink tights and black leotards. All while I arrived, the eldest and in my gym gear and socks.

How wrong I was! The class was rasonably small, only six of us and a friendly teacher. The girls varied from what looked like sixth formers to a lady who looked in her sixties and whilst I wasn’t the slimmest, I wasn’t the largest either. Everyone wore gym clothes and some with a jumper over the top. Although I was the only one without ballet slippers everyone’s style varied, some with leg warmers some with what looked like pointe shoes without ribbons. I was thrown into the class and corrected multiple times, which at first made me embarrassed being pulled up infront of the others, I was soon greatful for the advice and felt although lost at times by the end I had improved.

There was no judgement which was so different to my previous experiences with ballet and made me excited to return next week, although I am aching all over! Excitingly this morning my ballet shoes arrived! I ordered a pair of Bloch Arise full sole leather slippers in pink with elastic presewn, in a 6.5C. I had read various issues about sizing and could perhaps have managed a 6 but they’re not overly large and very comfortable. I can’t wait to try them next week!

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