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I don't know what made me think I'd be any better at step aerobics than I was the first time I tried it as a freshman in college.  This was right about the time my lifelong dyscalculia affliction was coming to light, and if you head over to that little linkylink there and scroll down to the second to last symptom (nearly all of which I exhibit from every pore), you will notice the following:

May have poor athletic coordination, difficulty keeping up with rapidly changing physical directions like in aerobic, dance, and exercise classes. Difficulty remembering dance step sequences, rules for playing sports.

Right then.  Well, at this point, I figured that the best way to be athletically coordinated, keep up with rapidly changing physical directions, and remember dance step sequences was to actually do all these things, as if exposure therapy was the way out of a hideous brain wiring, probably caused from exposure to too much polyester and orange shag early in life.

This went exactly as well as you might expect.  I attended a class with Carah The BFFE at the student gym while we were both students at The Womb.  And at the start of the class, the instructor got up on her step, Carah got up on her step, the rest of the class got up on their steps, and I... kicked my step halfway across the gym.  I didn't go back until it was well and truly time for Glutes 'n' Guts, the majority of which was performed on our backs.  If I screwed up, nobody would see it.

Now I faced my nemesis again; that step, those stomps.  I was a lady now, a married woman with a mortgage who was by now well acquainted with her learning disability, and this was well within my ken.  Right?  Right.

So the instructor got up on her step, the rest of the class got up on their steps, and I... tripped over my step and fell directly on my post-op knee.  This was the high point.  I was immediately told to perform a "Fred Astaire," which sounds like a travesty, a "lazy mambo," which sounds racist, and "knees around the world," which sounds like a fetish film I don't want to know anything about.

I handled the situation as any refined, educated lady would, and stood with my hands on my hips for several minutes at a time, glaring at the instructor.  I would have walked out, but a weight class was to follow, and I didn't want to lose my spot on the gym floor. Thus I squatted by standing.

One guy behind me approached to offer encouragement as I stood there atop Mount Step:  "You're doing great!"  he said, and I looked at him with a mixture of disbelief and disgust; this was the equivalent of me telling one of my students that his sub-literate essay was turned in with a very nice font.

At least my solution rendered me useful to another human being.  My inactivity made me approachable for a woman who wandered into the aerobics room with a piece of paper and dubious expression.

"Is this," she said, her eyes sliding towards the instructor, "where the hip hop class is meeting?"

I  pointed her to the correct classroom and resumed my post.  I would complain about the missed cardio opportunity, but then again, I hear angst and furor are quite the calorie burners.

legwarmers at:  marybeth@morningworksmedia.com

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Reader Comments (9)

[...] See the rest here: Blonde Champagne (2009-08-06 19:59) [...]

[...] Beth attempts a step aerobics class, which goes exactly as well as you might expect Share and [...]

Step aerobics on a post-op knee??? Ewwww, sounds painful...Is that the therapy your ortho prescribed??

August 7, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterJane

No. That's what the idiot owner of the knee prescribed.

August 7, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterMB

You should try other exercise routines. What about swimming?

August 8, 2009 | Unregistered Commenterred pill junkie

I swam right after the surgery, complete with attractive swimcap. But that didn't really give me the cardio I need, since I'm too uncoordinated to do the stokes properly. I'm back on the treadmill and elliptical by now, but it's still a little dicey. There IS one cardio class I can handle-- it's mostly old school calisthenics-- but that's only once a week. I wish I had the cash for water aerobics (paid class at the gym, as is my beloved pilates.) I'll probably be back in the pool as soon as it gets too cold to jog outside.

August 8, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterMB

Dude. I sincerely think I have that same learning disability. I did awesome in math in college, but forgot it all the moment I stepped out of the classroom. ...but I can write a mean essay.

Plus, I can't find my way out of a paper bag or remember names; & the fiance makes fun of me for WRITING DOWN how much I'm spending in the store while I shop. He can't understand why I can't just keep the figure in my head.

Also, I still count with my fingers. At 40!
I feel so... vindicated.

August 10, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterVicki

If you were able to not only handle, but excel at, college-level math, I'm thinking you don't have dyscalculia. You might, however, be heavily right-brained, which is another affliction entirely.

August 10, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterMB

Great headline.

August 16, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterSettlement
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