Many dancers (and normals) ask if I teach Bulletproof Ballerina group fitness classes in NYC. I could, and I’ve had plenty of opportunities to…but here’s why I don’t.
On one hand, I love traveling around the country to schools and studios teaching masterclasses with my Bulletproof Ballerina cross-training system. But that is something different. We are talking about regular group fitness classes, something found on ClassPass or as a weekly pop-in at your gym or dance studio. I have tried a few of these group classes from time to time, but those test runs reinforced my decision not to offer them on the regular (at least not at this point - not until we fix our mindsets around exercise). And it might surprise you that it has more to do with you and giving you what you need than you might think.
The truth is, despite what you think you want, you most likely can’t get what you need in a class setting. If you struggle with any of the same insecurities as I do, group fitness is not going to serve you in the way you really need to be served…in a way that actually gets you to your next level. Why? Because your demons are too strong.
I don’t know about you, but exercise classes are a nightmare for me. Instead of focusing on myself and what I need, I spend all my time looking at the girls around me to judge how I measure up - am I pushing harder, doing better, working longer, suffering more than them? It’s a f*cking dream scenario for my mental demons:
Look at the girl next to you…she’s so much prettier than you.
That girl’s so much skinnier than you.
Her legs are longer than yours.
She looks gorgeous in her workout gear while you look like a sloppy mess. Loser!
Why are you huffing and puffing when she's barely breaking a sweat?
Yeah, I’ve got issues. I’m fully aware of that. But I also am fully aware of what triggers those issues and try my best to stay out of those nightmare situations that allow my demons to run the show.
The whole point behind my Bulletproof Ballerina system is to get YOU in YOUR body so you can feel what YOU need to nurture yourself into peak performance. You’re not concerned with what others expect from you or what the lady next to you is doing…you are tuned in to your own body. Versus when you are in a class setting surrounded by women to compare yourself to and judge yourself against, it’s too easy for your demons to steal the reigns and use exercise as abuse, forcing you to push harder than everyone else in order to feel worthwhile. They need you to suffer for suffering's sake...not for the intention of leveling up. You’re not focusing on what you need and trying to understand your body…you’re trying to destroy it.
If I were money hungry and just out for my own success, I would have been doing group fitness classes four years ago when I first started my business. But, I refuse to sacrifice your needs and the main crux behind my system for extra money and popularity. The only dilemma is that I don’t get to reach as many dancers that could benefit from this coaching since everyone doesn’t have the capacity to work with me one-on-one at my gym here in NYC.
Well, this new online program BECOMING BULLETPROOF – LEVEL 1 is the solution to this dilemma.
Not only do you get 16 dancer-based cross-training workouts, but perhaps even more importantly, you get the Bulletproof Ballerina coaching and mindset tips as well. These are the real gems that saved me from my self-destructive behaviors and gave me control over my demons. These are the things you won’t find in a typical workout class or group exercise setting. These are the things no one else focuses on. These are the things that will give you power in your body and life. And this is how you achieve peak performance – combining the mental along with the physical components of training.
That’s what I want to give you with BECOMING BULLETPROOF - LEVEL 1.
This happens not by following along with the rest of the crowd in a group class...but by carving your own path. It took me a long time to learn these secrets the hard way. Now I want to share these mindsets & techniques with you in hopes of saving you time and pain.
Exercise shouldn’t be punishment for your sins. It shouldn’t be a competition with the girl next to you. It shouldn’t be an effort to please the teacher or fulfill someone else’s expectations. And it shouldn’t be a f*cking field day for your demons to torture you.
It should be about YOU. Optimizing your body physically and mentally, understanding it’s nuances so you can use it better. These are the essential ingredients for peak performance. This is what BECOMING BULLETPROOF is all about. And until we can appreciate that exercise should be an individual and unique quest for self-development, you need to cross-train in a way that allows you to be selfish about your focus and concentration. For now, that might require a solo journey...with a guide leading the way:
***Do you feel this competitive comparison game when you take fitness classes? Maybe you are so used to feeling this way when you exercise that you don't even recognize it's happening - that you are paying more attention to the people next to you than yourself? Do you feel like the more you brutalize yourself the more worthy you are afterwards? I'd love to hear your thoughts and personal experience with this. Email me please! I'm always curious about our individual struggles...how they can be similar and tie us together...or very dissimilar at times as well.***
Photo credit: (top) Rachel Neville / (bottom) Steve Vaccariello
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