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Watch Your Back, Jillian

Finding time to exercise while being
responsible for small children is not always easy. I’m not a
fan of working out after they’re in bed, as I simply get too
hyped up to sleep at a decent hour; and rising earlier than my
usual 6 a.m. to fit in some fitness time is out of the question
– I still don’t sleep through the night a couple nights
each week, and every second of unconsciousness is precious to me.

So I usually find myself exercising during Cora’s afternoon
quiet time. It’s relatively interruption-free, and my energy
flags after lunch anyway. I often spend a few moments of devotional
time beforehand, so while I try to finish before Cora comes
downstairs, sometimes she arrives while I’m still sweating
along with Jillian Michaels.

Which is how Cora has come to know –
rather well – pretty much every workout Jillian has recorded.
I like the woman’s style, and her 30-minute workouts are
ALMOST short enough for me to squeeze in most days. And I enjoy the
combination of cardio and toning she uses.

Cora enjoys the workouts too.

Let me tell you, when Cora comes downstairs and sees I’m
doing a workout video she’ll scream, run upstairs, change
into a gymnastics leotard, run back down, and get out her own
little one-pound weights. She’ll drag a mat next to mine if
I’m using one and jump right in. “I see you’re
doing level 3 today, huh, Mommy?” she’ll say as she
starts in with jumping jacks.

Let me make something clear right now: I am not a workout fanatic.
You do not see me walking around talking about reps or getting
shredded. And you will never, EVER hear me tell my daughter’s
I’m working out because “Mommy’s too fat”.
Any time I talk about exercising it’s for health reasons, for
staying strong and feeling good. Body image does not (and will not)
come into it. I have never watched "The Biggest Loser", and neither
will my kids.

So Cora doesn’t sweat alongside me developing some miniature
self-image-loathing complex. She sweats alongside me because the
kid thinks it’s fun.


Yesterday I got delayed getting started, and that combined with my
choosing a longer video than normal – 45 minutes –
meant Cora was participating a good twenty minutes. She lifted and
grunted and sweated, finishing minutes before needing to leave to
pick up Maddie. And as she was getting ready to go to school, she
said, “Mommy, when we get back, can I do level 2?”

Now, this is the child who rode her bike a good half hour that
morning, to the point that she said, “My legs really hurt.
I’m going to take a little nap sitting up so they’ll
stop being tired.” But Level 2 of Jillian’s
“Thirty-Day Shred” is Cora’s absolute favorite,
and I guess the girl was just in the mood.

So later that afternoon Cora once again got out her weights and got
set. For Level 2, by the way, Cora enjoys having her
mini-trampoline out, so she can do all her jumping jacks, oblique
twisting jumps, and skater’s moves on the trampoline. Leotard
on, weights set, trampoline down: the girl was good to go.

And let me tell you, that kid did the entire 20-minute workout. A
workout, by the way, that leaves me a sweating puddle. By the time
it was over Cora’s face was red and shiny but she was
laughing and jumping high still. The girl simply loves to be
physically active.

Look out, Biggest Loser Season 25: Cora’s coming and
she’s taking no prisoners.


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