I lead a double life.
I attend a pilates studio, where I remove my colourful sneakers at the door and walk in graciously, to a silent room, where concentration and meditation are de rigueur. I have been doing this for 7 years now. The movements and the effort are second nature now. Still, perfection remains an unattainable goal. Still, I work on body improvement, chisel, chisel, chisel, chisel.
At Club Stretch, pilates is a science. It is taught in an orthodox way and the various adjustments through the years have come because the purest version is yet at hand. I have learned to listen, to breath, to edit the drama, to abandon the smallest body language rituals, otherwise called tics.
Every class follows a rigorous choreography. Every transition is supposed to flow. Yet every class remains different because I have learned a detail, focused more deeply on an area of my spine or my core; added my arms and legs as other factors in the exercise.
Sometimes I am reminded that I am not at the gym. The place that has bulked my otherwise elongated muscles. It is frequently after the pilates class that I done my colourful sneakers and run to work out, to train.
When I walk into Evolve, which is at a stone throw from the pilates studio, I am focusing on my mood. I remind myself that I am here to express my energy, to test my strength, to "heal my wounds."
At the gym, music replaces silence. Drama facilitates performance. Here, limits are tested and boundaries are crossed. Time is against you, instead of being in harmony with you. At the gym, you are swimming against the current.
Sometimes I am reminded that "this isn't pilates!"Yet, I solicit my core strength, I hold my balance, I brace my spine. I am aware of the principles of pilates at the gym, in the same way as I focus on my muscular strength in the studio.
I belong to both worlds, caught between a rock and a hard place.