I haven’t been posting much because… I have been spending all my free time down at the Les Mills “Extreme” gym here in Wellington, shaking my booty in the Sh’Bam classes.  Normally it’s something like $30 a week to be a member there, but they have a free trial going on until the end of January.  So, I have been trying to take advantage of that as much as possible, since I can’t possibly afford to actually become a member.

My mom first told me about Sh’Bam a few months ago.  The gym near her house in Cary has Les Mills group fitness classes.  When I visited her in September I suggested we try out some of the group classes… we went to a Body Pump class, and a Body Flow class.  She loved them both and has since then become an avid Les Mills group fitness class attendee.  Since she started doing these classes she has lost probably near 15 kgs!  When we talk on Skype she likes to sing the songs and do her Sh’Bam dance moves for me.  Her endorsement was so strong I almost considered a paid membership… until I realised just how expensive it is.  So, I jumped at the chance to try it out when they started offering this free trial.  And now I am totally addicted.  I’m going to have to start selling crystal meth cooked in a camper van to support my Sh’Bam habit!

Have you ever seen a room of 50 women (and 2 or 3 guys) all performing synchronized dance moves with massive huge ear-to-ear smiles on their faces for 45 minutes straight? It’s a surreal experience.

Anyway, the thing I like about Sh’Bam is that it doesn’t take itself seriously – the instructors want it to be fun, and the songs and dance moves are made to be cheesy, and silly sometimes.  I also enjoy all these big pop songs, even though I am loathe to admit it.

Anyway, I compiled a mix of some of the my favourite Sh’Bam tracks, from the ones done here in New Zealand, which come from all the releases; Sh’Bam #1, Sh’Bam #2, and Sh’Bam #3.

You can download the .mp3’s here!

I wasn’t sure about what versions were used in the official releases… but I tried to find songs that sounded similar, from memory.  Also, I’m not exactly sure how Sh’Bam works.  I think some of the instructors make up their own choreography to songs of their choosing, but perhaps they are all choreographed and selected by Les Mills International?  I will try and find out.

Enjoy and find a Sh’Bam class near you to try it out!

Bonjour, 2011!

Inspired by Heidi’s end-of-the-year wrap-up post, and Harper’s Index, I thought I would do something similar.

It’s now 2011 here in New Zealand.  Unlike previous years, where I would go out and get schlitzed, last night Ticker and I stayed home and spent the evening making and eating various assorted appetizers (Blue cheese, walnut & pear canapes, caramelized onion and cream cheese canapes, chicken pesto and tomato phyllo triangles, feta and spinach phyllo triangles, mushroom and spinach phyllo triangles, pear, cranberry and walnut phyllo triangles) We did split a bottle of wine and a few beers, but I actually woke up this morning, not hung over, for probably the first New Years Day since I was 21.  And then – I went out for a jog!  Unheard of for the usual first of January in North America. Anyway, here is a bit of a wrap up for 2010 in facts and figures:

  • Number of words written so far on my thesis: 18,000
  • Total number of academic words written in the last year: 30,000+
  • Number of plants killed: 3
  • Number of books read for pleasure: 2 (both prior to March)
  • Number of scholarly books and articles read: 200+
  • Number of unopened issues of the New Yorker in my house: 3
  • Time it generally takes me to go through 1 issue of the New Yorker: 2 -3 weeks
  • Number of knitting projects finished: 4 (3 pairs of socks, one tea cozy)
  • Number of sewing projects finished: 4+ (3 dresses, 1 pair of shorts, lots of alterations)
  • Number of countries visited: 3 (USA, Canada, New Zealand)
  • Number of restaurants eaten at in Wellington: 15
  • Number of liters of tea consumed: 475
  • Number of times I swum in the ocean: 2
  • Number of new things I learned how to do: 5+ (sew an invisible zipper, “turn the heel” of a knitted sock, navigate Wellington streets, make kolachkies, use APA citation style, and so much more!)
  • Favourite album of 2010: How to decide!??!!

Anyway, I’m looking forward to 2011 being a good year.  It certainly seems to be starting out good!  I’m not making any resolutions this year.  I’m just resolving to be fitter, happier, and more productive.