Shaky legs & a six-pack vision

I think about fitness a lot. Normally it’s while I’m eating ice cream or finishing off a pack of cookies. Normally my thoughts are that I need to eat less ice cream and cookies and workout more.  When a friend invited me to try a boxing class with her, I thought it would be a fun (and beneficial) thing to do.

The class is called Jess Boxing, and as I would come to find out, it has been going on in Luxembourg for the last 9 years. Started by Jess Lampeitl, who has since moved to Sweden, the class is now run by Marie Barton a former trainee.

The most experience I’ve had with boxing was doing a Tae Bo video with my friends in high school and a kick boxing class in a gym, once, when I was in college. So basically not a lot.

Finding the class made me feel like I was already accomplishing something as it’s tucked away in a school gym in Clausen. I managed to find the class by following a woman in workout clothes. When I arrived people introduced themselves and there was a sense of camaraderie. Everyone was talking about a juice cleanse they were going to try.

Marie was friendly and explained how the class would work. She explained that as a beginner I would need to focus on technique and would do a slightly different series than everyone else. I thought, “I’ve done Tae Bo, I’ll be just fine.”

© Robert Byron |

She started the music and everyone began to warm up. We were running, doing star jumps and shuffling from side to side. By the end I was warmed up and thought I was doing pretty well. Then we partnered up and began doing a series of punches. One person would use gloves to punch and the other would hold the pads. I really enjoyed this part. Learning the correct form for punching was great. I could tell that doing this type of training would lead to a stronger core and overall fitness. Then we got into a circle. Up until this point, I thought I had done well but then we began a series of squats, planks and pushups.

As I was doing my second set of squats, I noticed that I had caught Marie’s eye. She was looking at me with vague amusement (or disgust) and shouted, “Are you okay? Your legs look really shaky.” I was surprised to hear this, as I thought I was killing the squats. From that point forward I felt pretty self-conscious. We partnered up again and I punched until my arms felt like noodles but felt much more aware of being watched. Fortunately somebody got a leg cramp, so the pressure was off. After that it was time for our cool-down and then to sneak out.

Marie recommended that I do the beginner program if I wanted to continue (all that Tae Bo was for nothing!).  She said that I needed to get the forms down but I think she was remembering my “shaky legs”.  I went home feeling really energized. The next day came and I was nicely sore all over. I could really feel all the work in my legs after the lunges, particularly when I went up and down stairs.

This class is definitely for people who are serious about working-out. It’s not a fun day out to the gym with the girls. It’s a real training class. I feel like if I did it for a month, I would have a six-pack. The website has all the course information and, like most fitness programs, promises to help you lose weight and tone up. Unlike most programs – I think this one is true!

For more information go to

By Katie Nail, March 2014