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Thank god, I think I finally figured out how to not lift weights (or do cardio)

I finally did it. I took up dancing.

In the past, I forced myself to lift weights or run which I never really enjoyed. I met some short term fitness/aesthetics goals (lost some weight, got some muscles) but nothing ever really stuck.

I can hardly believe I’m saying this, but after 3 months of dancing, I think I’m in the best shape of my life. I’ve lost 12 pounds. I’m 2 pounds from my weight goal. I’ve maintained this weight for a while- that’s new! And I just found out my body fat is at 21% which is amazing!

I always loved dancing, but I thought it was a waste of time as far as weight loss/fitness goes because it doesn’t burn a ton of calories and it won’t give me bulging muscles. Boy was I wrong! I haven’t even been super focused on calories but I love how my body looks and feels right now.

I’ve been dancing 3-5 hours a week and it’s kept me from eating too little (need energy for dance) or too much (need energy for dance). I’m also stretching a ton and working on flexibility goals.

I’m so much more conscious of my body now. Visually, losing a pound doesn’t make a difference. But when I dance I can tell.

So yeah. Here is my official vote for doing the type of exercise you love. Pilates. Yoga. Whatever. Stop worrying about burning calories and do the type of exercise you like the most. Because the best plan is the plan you can stick with!

And I am so goddamn happy I don’t have to lift weights. *kitten* the gym.


  • RunsWithBees
    RunsWithBees Posts: 1,507 Member
    I always considered dancing to be cardio :# but I get what you’re saying. Good job finding what works best for you! I always say keep trying different things until you find what you enjoy. Years ago I forced myself to go to the gym because I assumed thats how you get in shape but I found it to be incredibly boring. Once I started going outside for my exercise I found it much more enjoyable. I started out running to up my calorie burn but ended up loving it and finding my true passion… trail running! Now I don’t run for the burn, I run because I love it! :)
  • kpforest25
    kpforest25 Posts: 6 Member
    I always considered dancing to be cardio :# but I get what you’re saying. :)

    If you’re moving a lot and jumping around a lot, then yes. But it really depends on the type of dance. I would probably burn more calories walking or running than I do dancing.

    And thank you! Congrats on discovering trail running! I’m a little jealous, I’ve always been envious of trail runners for getting to see the trail so fast but I barely like running on flat ground.

  • Alinouveau2
    Alinouveau2 Posts: 2,413 Member
    Dancing is great exercise cause it uses your entire body. If you're jumping around and doing more cardio kind of dancing you're still using your core a ton! It's hard to stay balanced with a bad core, believe me I've had to help people skate who have no idea how to engage their core

    Hooray for finding something you love it's really half the getting fit/weight loss battle
  • claireychn074
    claireychn074 Posts: 587 Member
    I used to to force myself to run as I thought it was necessary, but I hate it and sound like a pair of bellows (I’m asthmatic). So I do Olympic weightlifting which I LOVE. Still wheeze but I love the weights - hate endurance cardio. Defo important to find the exercise you enjoy as that makes such a difference.
  • nossmf
    nossmf Posts: 2,099 Member
    The best exercise is the one you keep doing. The one you keep doing is the one you enjoy.
  • Speakeasy76
    Speakeasy76 Posts: 917 Member
    That's great that you found something you love and doesn't "feel" like exercise! Professional dancers are strong and in awesome shape! Sure, they probably do some kind of resistance training outside of dance, but the moves at the barre for ballet are tough. I, too, used to think some of exercises weren't "good enough" for weight loss or maintaining, but have gotten over that. For example, I now really enjoy taking walks outside, but in the past thought they were useless since I they didn't "burn enough calories."

    I love dance, too, and have been taking some form of it for the past 4 years--anything from ballroom to hip hop to ballet--and perform as well. I'm in 5 classes now, with one of those being the "adult performance company." Even though I lift weights and lift heavy, the moves at the barre at ballet and ballet itself make me realize I'm not as strong as I think! It's been really good for my body awareness and postural muscles, and just being more aware of my posture in general. Also, after I've danced a cha cha or jive routine, it is definitely a good cardio workout! I actually got started with ballroom (particularly latin ballroom) by taking a ballroom-based dance exercise class with a professional dancer--it was so much fun!
  • age_is_just_a_number
    age_is_just_a_number Posts: 519 Member
    Just goes to show you that no workout is a bad workout. What really matters is that you are enjoying what you are doing.