I started dancing (ballet) at the age of five and left for NYC at the age of 23 to pursue my career as a dancer in NYC. Once a dancer always a dancer. But what happens when your female “Clock” is ticking and you need to stop dancing to start dating! At age 28, I was dancing in a modern dance company in NYC. It was wild. We performed at various fountains throughout NYC. We would get an interesting audience of tourists, elite folks, busy “Wall Streeters” and of course the casual “Strollerbyers”. Dance jobs were tough so dancing at city fountains was the passion “Job” at hand. Dancers will do anything to dance! But as a “older” dancer of 28, I also knew that I would like to dance into a serious relationship, get married and maybe have children someday. What’s a dancer to do? Hit the streets?
To supplement my “high paying” job as a “Fountain” dancer, I worked as a waiter in a high class Italian restaurant (it is torn down now and they put up a chain, The Four Seasons Hotel). Lucky me, a new waiter started at our restaurant, a “Jean Claude Van Damme” look a like! So cute, with a romantic European accent. I was in love the moment I met him! So being the best waitress in the land, I asked my manager if I could train him for his new job and of course he wanted me to train him! I helped him enter the world of waitering in NYC. He was my “Prince Charming” and later became my best friend. Three months later, my husband. This dancer knows how to take a “Leap” of faith and “Spin” silly into love.
My new husband would come to my dance performances. At one of these performances he came to, I was wearing a large wooden mask that covered my entire face. He said, in his thick Portuguese accent, “Why are you dancing with a mask? I can’t tell who you are in the group”. That was it. That was my Last Dance performance. Or was it?
I turned to working as a general manager of a trendy NYC restaurant in Manhattan. I was making money, but my heart missed dancing. I missed it so much. My body was getting a little “restauranted” out too! So the logical next move was to take my dance education from Cornish School of The Allied Arts in Seattle WA and become a Personal Trainer. My sexy, hot, fit hubby and I opened up Aline Fitness, Inc, a elite personal training studio on the Upper East Side of Manhattan. We were successful. We both were fit and we fit together and had our first child a doberman named Kyzer and seven months later our first born. I was 31 years old. Life was dancing in the right direction
Something else came into my life, a Big, Bulky hard to drive stroller. To top it off, I was fat, depressed and had to watch my sexy husband continue his fit life without me. I was now saddled to a sofa and was the local “Cows Bar”. Let’s just say, I looked like a out of work Porn Star. The inner dancer in me was now behind a curtain of depression. No audience, no leaps, no turns to keep me happy. Something had to change besides diapers.
One night like usual, I had to take our dog Kyzer out for his walk. So I dragged our 40 pound German Tank of a stroller, down four flight of stairs. I shoved my fully loaded breasts into any bra that sort of fit . My big ASS headed to the streets with my only thing that made me smile, my little girl! I had my Walkman (No IPHONE yet guys). I put on my favorite music, Madonna. The song playing was “You Must Be My Lucky Star”. Yes, my little girl was my Lucky Star but it was my “lucky” night too! Kyzer looked up at me and it was like I heard him say, let’s stroll! So, with stroller in hand, music playing, I started to dance behind a stroller. We dance “strolled” up Park Avenue into Central Park and back to The Plaza Hotel steps. I used benches by the “Fountain” (Remember the Fountain). The stage was set. I was now a “Mom On a Mission” to get my flat abs back. I had discovered a way to get fit while being with my baby and it involved dancing my behind OFF. One day, my husband was on his bike, “Behind” me while I was Pushing like a Pram Princess. He cried out, “MUSH, MUSH, Strollercize”. That was the day a new mom dancer was born. The performance of a lifetime. That was spring of 1990.
To date, I continue to dance and choreograph the greatest Ballet for new moms in the world, Strollercize®. It can be seen in Central Park and around the country and now even in other countries. Classes are taught by my “Proteges” (Strollercize Certified Instructors). I taught nearly 18 years in Central Park, near a fountain, the same fountain that I danced at at the age of 27. Now, Strollercize moms dance behind their strollers and I am just their Master Instructor, a “Mom On a Mission” (Chapter in my book Strollercize, The Workout For New Mothers, by Random House 2001.
Today I continue to sculpt, choreograph and listen to moms of my own personal yesterday. I want to instill in all moms that want to be A Fit Mom that you need to start getting fit right when the doctor gives you that OK. Do not let life sweep you off your feet so you can’t dance fit into your new life. It is also best to be with your baby as much as possible in those first three years. So, take advantage of that “Stroller” time.
You may not see me in Central Park but the imprint of Strollercize®, working out with a stroller can be seen in many new businesses and start ups throughout the country. It was that sad, lonely night in NYC with a Mom that had no Mission that the “Mission” was possible.
Excerpt from A Fit Mom in a Un Fit Society
More of this story and my life as A FIT MOM in a E-Book I am working on called, A FIT MOM in a Un-FIt Society. If you would like to be put on the list for when it comes out, just comment.