Cardio Striptease: Take It Off
Strip aerobics classes offer fun and fitness while you shed pounds
All Shapes and Sizes continued...
"This is not for hot young babes," she insists. "In fact, women with more size move unbelievably well. In fact, I tell the small women: "'Take up more space!" Expand!"
"When you do this you fall in love with yourself, no matter what size you are."
They may boost your self-esteem, but can stripping classes really bump up your fitness level? That depends on the class -- and on you.
Kelli Calabrese, MS, an exercise physiologist and spokesperson for the American Council on Exercise, advises checking your heart rate during a class to see how hard you're working. To determine your so-called "maximum heart rate," subtract your age from 220. (If you're 40, for example, your maximum heart rate is 180.)
For a beginner, she tells WebMD, cardio benefits are achieved when you reach 55% of your maximum. This can be done in intense bursts, rather than over a sustained period.
"I would say cardio striptease is pretty good for endurance and cardiovascular," she says, "but I would wear a heart rate monitor for a session and see what it's doing for you. You probably need to supplement it -- and add strength training.
"If you have the courage, go for it," Calabrese says. "Hula and belly dancing are also fun. These are a fun piece of the pie but need to be supplemented."
As for those six-inch heels? "I would not," she says with a smile, "think of those for a workout."