BuggyFit (for an Early Death)

Isn’t it lovely to work out outside in the fresh air? I wouldn’t know.

I picked a terrible day to try the BuggyFit class on Clapham Common. It was freezing cold, about as cold as it gets here in London, but I had set my mind on going yesterday morning, and knew a friend who was going, so I layered up and went. By the time I had walked E to nursery school and then walked to the BuggyFit meeting point on the common, I’d already logged over 5,000 steps, half the daily goal on the Fitbit, and it was only 9:30.

There was a fairly large group of women in workout clothes with their baby buggies so they were easy to find. If that many are hardcore enough to come when it’s that cold, it must be a huge class when the weather is nice!

While we waited for the instructor to arrive, some ladies were talking about how the air pollution level is at some crazy high level this week and Londoners are being told not to exercise outdoors. Well, great.

Look at the lovely morning mist on the common. Or is it smog?

One woman was particularly concerned about it, and kept saying that she wasn’t sure she should participate today, or maybe she just wouldn’t do any running, and yesterday she worked out and then felt like she’d smoked 23 cigarettes (an oddly specific number) for the rest of the day.

“Well what can happen from one hour of exercise today?” I asked her.

“Cancer, early death,” she replied matter-of-factly.

I know you said you don’t want to run but you sound like the grim reaper is right behind you so you might want to rethink that and get a move on, Debbie Downer.

Well, I’d made it this far, I wasn’t going to let a little fear-mongering keep me from getting my workout in, especially since Baby R was sleeping so soundly just then.

The instructor was really nice and very encouraging to everyone, and overall I liked the class. I think I will like it a lot more when the weather and air quality are both better. My one criticism was there was a bit too much waiting in between exercises, so it didn’t keep my heart rate up the entire time. Also, to add to our air quality issues, at one point a large cloud of marijuana smoke engulfed us, thanks to a man on a bench nearby. Though maybe some people would consider that a bonus?

But the price is right: you can buy 10 classes for just £60, which is much cheaper than all the other classes I’ve tried. Especially the one Pilates teacher who wants £20 per class to instruct me to sit there and do my pelvic floor exercises.

I’ve never smoked, so I don’t know if I felt like I’d had 23 cigarettes after my workout, but I did definitely notice how much worse the air is in central London when I went there today. It sort of feels like you’re breathing in car exhaust directly (which I guess you kind of are).  Really unpleasant. I always thought smog was worse when it was hot, like when you hear about the smog in LA or Beijing. I didn’t realize it could be this bad when it’s cold, too. Yuck. I’ve been craving a weekend getaway to somewhere, since we haven’t left London in months, and now I feel desperately ready to get out of the city. Cotswolds, take me away!

Best quote: “It’s hard to comfort a baby with boxing gloves on.”

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