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Brandy Tries... To Get Her Act Together.

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Brandy Tries... To Get Her Act Together.

Well, that didn’t take long. I fell off the wagon, so to speak. I haven’t been to class in weeks. I have a condition; maybe you can relate. If I make a promise to you, it’s ironclad, baby. Hard as a rock. You could build a house on it. But, if I make a promise to myself, it’s overcooked oatmeal at best.
  • Brain: But, Self! You’ve been so busy! The YMCA has had so many events lately! You’re so tired! You’re trying to move house! You’ve been sickish! You deserve a break! Work out tomorrow (or next month… or never)! You look fine!
  • Self: Thanks, Brain. I can always count on you to be a bottomless pit of excuses and self-serving platitudes. But, could you just cooperate with me for a bit? By the way, did you see that picture of us this week?
  • Body: Yes, please Brain. Get on board. We NEED this. I saw that picture...
  • Brain: La la la la laaaa!…Let’s have wine and pizza and watch Purple Rain again in our jammies!
  • Self & Body: *sigh*
Alright. Next week, my Lovelies. Next week, we’re back on this! Anyone want to join me for Abs at 5pm and/or Yoga at 5:30pm on Monday Thursday? (We’re closed on Monday!)

Brandy Tries... Yoga!

Brandy Tries1

Brandy Tries… Yoga!
I’m changing it up a bit. I’m going to post weekly now instead of monthly. So, if you’re tempted but need another clumsy person to be in class with you, come join me.
Thoughts before the first class:
Ahhh, I cannot WAIT to switch from all of this cardio and strength training to yoga. I could use some soothing music and stretching exercises. I could use something easy. People who pamper themselves do yoga. I can do that. I could use some pampering.
First Day of Class:
OK, so yeah, it IS relaxing. BUT, it’s also challenging. And apparently, my sense of balance is so bad that I’m surprised I’m able to walk upright on a regular basis. Wow. I’m sure that will improve.
When I think of yoga and when I watch people doing yoga in movies and on TV, I’m struck by the graceful lines of it. It’s beautiful. So tonight while in some pose that pulled my body into long lines, I closed my eyes. My kind, self-loving mind thought, “I’m a swan. I’m a swan!” Then I lost my balance, my eyes flew open, and my brain said, “You’re a baby elephant!”
As far as flexibility goes, yes, it’s a very bendy class. In one way, I have an advantage. I’m what doctors call “hypermobile.” That just means I can do the splits, touch my thumb to my forearm, and do a few other party tricks. I should be able to fold my body in half. But, the weird thing about bodies is that sometimes, they get in the way. Like, I’m sure I could touch my chin to my knee if my entire midsection were missing. But, it’s there and I have to do yoga around it. And that’s okay. The instructor, Deb Patacsil, showed us how to literally move our flesh around if we needed to. Yep, this means grabbing a handful of butt and pulling it out to the side so you can sit flat on the floor. This is very much a no judgment kind of class. I mean, let’s face it. At some point when you’re bending yourself into a pretzel, someone is going to pass a little gas. Hey, guess what. You reside inside of a human body. Human bodies do gross things and the insides of them smell pretty bad. We deal.
We did a few poses that were really REALLY hard for me. Oh, I forgot to mention that I also did Deb’s abs class just before her yoga class. Between that and those more challenging poses, I’m starting to feel a few early hints of what is likely going to be a very, very sore day tomorrow. We’ll see. I’ll let you know!

Brandy Tries... Cardio Blast!


Day 1sweat
I’m writing this from beyond the grave. I’m kidding of course. Dead people don’t sweat. But, it’s entirely possible that what I’m feeling in my inner thighs is the early onset of rigor mortis. So, the jury is still out on this whole alive vs. dead thing. I’ll let you know tomorrow.
In all seriousness, this first class was intense, but also a lot of fun. I’ve taken a few Saturday sessions of Cardio Blast before, but they didn’t prepare me for this Monday class. I have two words for you. Step. Aerobics. Did you know that a six inch plastic platform could kick your butt? Sure, it looks innocuous enough. It’s actually kind of cute with its purple body and gray base and reassuring black non-slip surface. Its corners are rounded and it has little rubber feet to keep it from slipping. Everything about it says it’s safe. It wants to protect you. It would never hurt you. It’s your friend.
Do you have one of those friends who is well liked by your family, has a steady job, good credit, and is generally just a stand up guy? But, then when Friday night comes around, this pillar of the community talks you into drinking way too much, singing karaoke, and dancing too hard and you wake up feeling like you slept in a pothole on the New Jersey Turnpike. That friend is that cute little plastic platform. I’m mad at it. I don’t trust it. But, I know that when I go to class on Wednesday night, I’m going to look at it and say, “Aww, it’s okay, little buddy. Let’s do this!”
Our instructor, Lu.
Let’s talk about the instructor for a minute. Luann Schroder teaches Cardio Blast here at the YMCA. As a matter of fact, she’s been teaching aerobics at the YMCA for 35 years! In her spare time (ha!), she also teaches 3rd grade at Columbia Elementary full time. Everything about Lu is geared toward motivating unruly people between the ages of 8 and 108. She’s energy incarnate. I’m not kidding when I say this: She posted a sticker chart for the month of February. A sticker chart, people! We got stars for every day that we came to class. We entered our names into a drawing for goodies to be given out on Leap Day. She smiled at each of us when we lugged our bodies through the door every day. If you have a favorite teacher from elementary school, one who made you feel real excitement about what you were learning, one who served as your cheerleader and who had faith in you even when you didn’t, you have some idea of what kind of instructor Lu is.
Now, even your favorite teachers made you do work, right? Lu gave us a 29 day challenge that involved doing an increasing number of squats, leg lifts, and pushups every day for the month of February. On days when we had class, we’d do our reps here at the Y. On days we didn’t have class, we did the reps on our own. Yep. Homework. The month started with a day of 50 squats, five pushups, and 25 leg lifts. The month ended with a day of 250 squats, 40 pushups, and 100 leg lifts. If you don’t think you could possibly do that, I can assure you that you are mistaken. I did it. I did reps before bed on some nights. I did a few reps before leaving for work. And if you had access to the YMCA’s security footage, you’d even see me squeezing out 80 squats behind the front desk during a lull. But, you don’t have access to that footage, and I’m forever grateful for that! And if you can’t do squats (or step aerobics, or jumping, or any particular kind of movement), that’s not a problem. Every single movement/activity in the class can be modified. For example, I don’t jump. I just hurts too much right now. So, I didn’t jump. Simple. I moved in other ways while others jumped. And I wasn’t alone. There are plenty of modifiers in the class. That’s totally ok.
I missed about a week of class because I caught the plague a cold. And coming back after that down time was a little rough. But, there was Lu, fighting the same crud and she just kept on keeping on. The step aerobics got easier as I built up more stamina. I won’t say that I’ve become friends with that cute little platform, but I don’t actually hate it anymore.
Final Thoughts
I survived! Given the buckets of sweat that poured off of me during every class, I’m surprised that I’m not a large piece of Brandy-shaped jerky. I haven’t weighed myself because I’m trying not to make it all about numbers. But, I can tell you that I feel fantastic and my clothes fall a little differently than they did before I started the class. Bottom line, if you’re looking for a fun class with a fun instructor and really great classmates, this is the one for you. It’s adaptable, has great music, and WILL make you sweat it out!

Brandy Tries... Zumba!

Brandy Tries


Brandy Tries… Zumba!

My name is Brandy Kizer and I’m the new face on the Cass County Family Y staff. As the new Marketing and Membership Director, I think it’s important that I be able to bridge any gap between our members and our programs and classes. And the only way to do that is to really know our programs and classes. And the only way to do THAT is to take part in every program and class we have. If you’ve been into the Y and laid eyes on me, you might have an idea just what an undertaking this is. I’m… how shall we say?... not athletic. I’m somewhere in my latter 30s. I have Hashimoto’s, a thyroid disorder that makes it easy to gain and hard to lose weight. I have a temperamental knee and an ankle that is just plain tired of hauling my heftiness around. I have asthma. I work fulltime. I have kids. If you’re short on excuses, feel free to borrow one of mine.

The only hard thing on my body is my elbow. I love food. I love sleep. And I secretly wish our ellipticals had weight limits. I’m not the only fluffy person wandering the halls of our local Y. There are plenty of us trying to get healthier. But, most of us are more than a little nervous about doing anything more than hopping on the old trusty treadmill.

So, let me be your Cass County YMCA programs and classes ambassador. I vow to take part in at least one program or class for a full month until I have done every last one of them. I will write about my experiences and you can feel free to stop by and ask me anything. Better yet, join me for a class or two. I can assure you that with me in the room, you won’t feel alone when you’re just trying to keep up.

First up: January is Zumba! month.


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The CASS COUNTY FAMILY YMCA is committed to providing programs that build a healthy spirit, mind and body for all. We make every effort to ensure that no one is turned away due to inability to pay. Financial assistance is available please contact us for more information.
Hours of Operation
5:00 am. - 1:00 am.
4:30 am. - 9:00 pm.
4:30 am. - 1:00 am.
4:30 am. - 9:00 pm.
4:30 am. - 9:00 pm.
6:00 am. - 5:00 pm.
12:00 pm. - 4:00 pm.
Child Care (6 months to 7 years only)
(Spaces limited, must call ahead)
9:00a-12:00p & 4:00p-7:00p
9:00a-12:00p & 4:00p-7:00p
Branch Information:
905 E. Broadway, Logansport, IN 46947
Phone: (574) 753-5141
Fax: (574) 735-2905
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