In 2013, Veronica Perez was looking for a way to lose some weight and maintain a healthy lifestyle. Like so many people, she was drowning in depression, putting her family’s needs above her own and using food and cigarettes as her crutch.
“I’m not a gym person,” Perez said. “But I had to do something.”
One day, a friend invited Perez to a Zumba class, where the music and the high-intensity routines eventually helped her lose 25 pounds.
Fast forward to today: She’s created Studio 101 Dance & Fitness (3627 W. Armitage Ave.), where she choreographs dance classes for adults and children. While there are two age groups, some of the younger students took to the class immediately and are sweating it out with the pre-teens. This spring, the studio is offering “Kids Wanna Dance!” programs. For six weeks your kids can learn fitness, choreography and teamwork in two groups, ages six to nine and 10 to 14. Classes start April 11; check the schedule here for pricing and more info.
Perez and her kids have been invited to join with a Dance for Autism program, which is still in the works for this fall. You can learn more about on their Facebook page.
And for the adults, there’s Zumba Fitness classes at 7 p.m. and at 8 p.m. there’s Mixed Fit, Perez’s special blend of Zumba and boot-camp-style exercise set to pop music. You can drop in for one class at $8 or pay for five or 20 classes up front.
I’ve been doing Zumba in my living room off and on for years, but there’s nothing like the company of other people to keep you going and an instructor to keep you from quitting after 15 minutes and drinking a soda on the couch.
So, bring your kids, bring your sneakers and get ready to sweat away your winter blues at Studio 101 Dance & Fitness. And bring a friend who’s not a gym person. They’ll thank you for it.