I can die now that I got that photo.
NBD, Jillian Michaels putting her arm around me.
I was supposed to interview her for work, but her schedule changed. â€œOkay, can I still get a photo opp with her??â€ I asked the PR girl. Jillianâ€™s honestly played a huge role in my weight loss journey. I remember watching The Biggest Loser as I was losing weight and thinking â€œif they can do it, I can do it!â€ I love her brand of tough love and resilience â€” while still being real and vulnerable.Â
Iâ€™ve also mentioned I freaking love her podcasts. They are hilarious and irreverent, and they keep me entertained while I run, listening to a mix of her shenanigans, health tips and business and life lessons. You can tell she takes her work very seriously, and while I certainly donâ€™t agree with some of her business decisions, I respect her work ethic.
So when we got the chance to take a photoâ€¦I thanked her profusely, told her how excited I was to meet her, and how I lovedÂ listening to her podcast while running. It was after weâ€™d snapped this photo, and her arm was no longer around me. â€œThatâ€™s so sweet!â€ she said. â€œThatâ€™s my favorite project.â€Â
So, the workout. The reason I was ostensibly there. Well, this is the second year that sheâ€™s partnered with Curves for 30-minute circuit workouts: 30 seconds of a bodyweight move like push-ups, 30 seconds on machines. While Curves are definitely very, very beginner-friendly, I found that so long as I pushed myself to get in as many reps as possible on both the bodyweight moves (push-ups, roundhouse kicks, squats with punches), I was definitely able to get my heart rate up and sweat.
In normal Curves locations, thereâ€™s a video of Jillian playing in the background coaching you through the workout with a live coach helping with form cues. In this case, Jillian herself helped with form cues for the bodyweight exercise while a Curves coach helped with the machines. Although I like to think I know a lot about fitness and working out, I am not a machines girl and some of these machines were completely new to me and humbling to figure out, so I definitely lost some of the 30-second interval figuring out what I was doing and transitioning.
An instructor also led us through a mobility warm-up that drew from their new Body Balance class. So many older folk and those newer to working out (and, um, me) are lacking in flexibility and mobility, and I think this is an awesome addition. They also added an Arms-Core-Legs class to work on those body parts, and a Stretch & Strength class to strengthen and stretch out a muscle, back to back.
Although Curves might not generally be my speed for a workout, I love that Jillian has worked to offer something for everyone from the beginner to fitness to someone more advanced with her new BodyShred certification. Once I start racking up certs, I may go for that one as I seek to expand my own fitness empire…
Whoâ€™s your fitness idol?