Soooo I did a thing.
A couple months ago, I decided I wanted to do something really fun with my mom. I’m mildly obsessed with her, actually. She likes to say that if I could, I’d probably try to crawl back into her womb. I’m such a weirdo that when I go back to Connecticut for the weekend, I get legitimately offended when she doesn’t devote all of her time to hanging out with me. I’ll legit force her to let me go out to dinner with her and her friends. Luckily for her, I’m not a regular daughter, I’m a cool daughter. I can totes hang with the ladies and be one of the gang. Aside from the impending menopause and endless complaining about my husband (single, party of me!), I fit in rather seamlessly.
So when I asked her to block off her Saturday to spend time with me for a surprise afternoon, she happily agreed. She kept asking what we were doing, but I’m not an idiot. I was fully aware that if I told her, there was no way in hell I’d get her to actually go with me. Guys, I wish you could’ve seen the look on her face as we got closer to the studio. First of all, the studio is in Meriden, which is about a 25 minute drive from where we live. Once we got off the exit, she was immediately suspicious. Within five minutes we had passed two adult stores and a strip club. Then we pulled into the parking lot of the shopping center where the studio is located, and she was still clueless. I finally told her we were going to a pole dancing class at The Girl Spot and I swear to you, I almost died from laughing when I saw her face. If looks could kill, I’d have been as good as gone. TBH, I’m shocked I actually got her to go in the studio after that. But we were already there and I had already paid, so there was no turning back…
When you start off in pole fitness, most studios will make you take a beginners class. There’s no hanging upside down or crazy stunts during your first time. Trust me, you wouldn’t be able to do them anyway. They’re WAY harder than they look. By the grace of God, my mom and I were the only two people taking the beginner class that day, so we had 1 on 1 attention the whole time. We had an AMAZING instructor. Somehow, someway, she managed to get my mom to actually enjoy what she was doing!
The class starts off with a warmup. There’s a ton of stretching involved, because you should be nice and loosey goosey before trying any pole tricks. There’s also some conditioning. Trust me, you want to be as strong as possible for any of the tricks involved. You should be prepared to do pushups, situps, planks and lunges. No questions – you will 100% be breaking a sweat during this. After the warmups are complete, you’re ready for your first move! Ours wasn’t on the pole… yet. Our teacher demonstrated the floorwork for this particular move a handful of times, and then had us show her ourselves, where she then corrected and applauded us. The entire experience is truly freeing, and totally positive. You never feel like you’re being criticized, just encouraged.
Once that was mastered, it was finally time to hit the pole! In just a half an hour, we learned a quick routine that, for lack of better words, made me feel sexy and feminine. I have never been so proud of my mom as when I saw her swing around the pole.. how bizarre does that sound?! She was so stinking cute and so proud of herself when she got it right, and I was so happy to see how confident she looked doing it. I don’t know about you, but I don’t know too many mother daughter duos who could manage to complete a pole dancing class together, and look good doing it 😉
The aftermath was no joke. I can’t remember the last time I’ve been so sore. Seriously, I’ve never been that sore from a workout before. For four days. Ugh. And be prepared, because you’re going to get bruised. I have no idea how, but my mom managed to get most of her bruises on her arms (something tells me she wasn’t doing something right), but mine were all on my legs (mostly my thighs) from holding onto the pole with my legs in a death grip lol. It was an ugly sight, I’ll tell you that much. Not too ugly, apparently, because we happily went back to our second class the following weekend. That one, my friends, was exponentially more challenging. If you ever want to feel like a weakling, I encourage you to try to climb a stripper pole with nothing but your body to get you up it. Who knew I had next to no muscles? I certainly didn’t. Forget trying to climb the pole, I could hardly hold myself up on it for longer than two seconds. I did, however, learn two new tricks that made me feel pretty badass, so there’s that.
Here’s the lesson in all of this: step out of your comfort zone. Just because you don’t think you’d like something or you don’t think you’d be good at something, that doesn’t make it true. You might find that you make some of the best memories out of something you never thought you’d do. I challenge you to make a plan right TODAY to do something you wouldn’t normally be comfortable with. If that’s pole dancing, then great! If it’s jumping out of a plane (with a parachute!), even better. Try to push yourself – you might just find that you actually love what you never thought you’d try. xo, AJ