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Gliders: evil invention invades my workout

June 24, 2009

By Shannon

For over a year now, I have been attending classes at Fusion Fitness KC. I’ve been a big supporter of their studio, and have enthusiastically dragged several friends to try a class.

The greatest testimonial for a fitness class is the actual physiques of the participants, and the women in these classes with two, three or four children look amazing. Both of the owners/instructors recently gave birth and each took a staggering two weeks off from teaching classes (really disappointing, couldn’t you have come back sooner?) Both returned to class with nary a sign of birthing babies, and to boot even sported six packs. To witness their effortless return to class has been humbling to say the least, but very inspiring.

Frothygirlz photo

Frothygirlz photo/ Illustration 1A

I myself am no fitness slouch. I have been neurotic about exercising for the last 15 years, and even taught boot camp classes pre-children. Someone told me about the Fusion classes when I was experiencing an always delightful “fitness plateau” during which absolutely nothing I did could budge the perpetual preponderance of belly fat that clung to me after my second child. It was perfect timing because I needed to try something new.

A little background on the instructors: “S” used to work with Jacki Warner of Bravo Television’s Work Out and with Jillian from The Biggest Loser. “D” has a longtime history with ballet and gymnastics. They combine their strengths for a lethal combination of fat-burning and muscle sculpting.

I walked into that fateful first class cocky, for I found little challenging any more. Tae-box? Meh. Spin? Been there, done that. Ball classes? Bo-ring. Weight-lifting? Yawn. The instructor told me to grab “one or two pound weights” along with various other fitness equipment. I mentally scoffed, already writing this class off as a waste of time. One or two pound weights? Laughable. Of course I grabbed the two’s.

After an inordinate amount of time went by, I was gasping, sweating, and my arms burned like never before. Fortunately, class was almost over. Unfortunately, when I looked at the wall clock, it flipped me the bird and showed that I had only been in class all of eight minutes. I faced the seemingly impossible task of making it through another 52 minutes. Embarrassed, I exchanged my “twos” for “ones” and somehow finished class.

I’ve since become a regular, attending class two times a week for the last year, as an adjunct to my fitness regimen. I have also dropped two sizes since I started. It never gets easy. Every time you think you are finally making progress getting through class, they shake it up with a new routine or contraption. I deal with whatever is thrown my way, no biggie. Until now. This last addition to the tormenting equipment is just unacceptable. I present to you the Gliders in illustration 1A.

They look innocuous enough, but they are in fact, designed by the devil. In the skilled hands of the sadistic instructors they have become the bane of my existence, and I loathe them with furious contempt usually reserved for people who kill puppies or speak on a bluetooth device. “S” and “D”, the aforementioned instructors, take a perfectly horrific exercise and make it exponentially harder by adding the goddamn “gliders”. I do believe they take delight in discovering old-standby exercises that can now be performed with gliders. Let me throw out a few. How about “mountain-climbers”. Dreadful without props, now you get the added benefit of extra special torso burn. Push ups are always lovely, but why stop there when you can place gliders under your hands? This allows you to do a push-up and when you are at the lowest part, extend one hand out in front of you, then the other. Full-body shaking ensues, always an attractive side effect. After performing about two of these modified push-ups everybody’s face is purple and the stink eye is dancing about the room, looking for a target.

A few of us are planning a Ninja-esque mission to confiscate the offensive fitness equipment. It shall be the strangest burglary ever recorded, with nothing valuable missing, just a tub of gliders. Until we accomplish this magnificent feat, I’ll be back in class like always, because despite all my bitching, these classes flat out work where all else fails.

You can find all their info here. Try it, I’m sure you’ll love it *wink*.


3 Responses to “ Gliders: evil invention invades my workout ”

  1. Shelly Marsh on June 24, 2009 at 6:07 pm


    Loved this piece! I was totally cracking up when you talked about picking up the two pound weights……That’s exactly what I did my first time there. D said why don’t you try the 1 pounders and I looked at her as if she was high :) Too funny, love you style of writing. I’ll be back!


  2. Lea Loudon on June 28, 2009 at 9:58 am

    I am right there with you Shannon. I am still trying to come to terms with the glidders. S said the other day that D suggested putting sand in the big balls to make them more of a challenge. Yes that’s what we need, the big balls with more of a challenge!!!! I wouldn’t trade the studio or the incredible instructors for anything. We have found something golden and it shows!!!

  3. Michelle Derry on June 30, 2009 at 12:45 pm

    I am “almost” speechless as all classes mentioned above that you find boring are the ones that I teach and often see you attend…