These days, taking a workout class in NYC can feel like you’ve mistakenly signed up for a cooking class in which you’re the entree.
“Find that delicious stretch in your hamstrings,” you’ll undoubtedly hear a yoga instructor say.
“Let’s get those hip sockets nice and juicy,” suggests a pilates instructor.
“Give me a real yummy squat,” directs the barre teacher.
Words that aptly describe a medium-rare cheeseburger are pretty much unavoidable in today’s boutique fitness lexicon.
Gone are the days when I went to class just to tone up. Now, I’m marinating like a piece of meat.
“It’s at the point where, when I go to other peoples’ classes, I’m like, ‘How do you want me to taste in this plank?’ ” Steph White, an instructor at SLT who lives Hells Kitchen, tells The Post.
All these food-isms on the mat are driving me crazy, but trainers assure me there’s a method to the madness.
White says fitness freaks want to add flavor to their routines: “It can get pretty redundant and people go on autopilot,” she says of the typical class-hopper. “So when you say things like, ‘Take a scoop out of your belly, like an ice cream scoop,’ it gets more exciting.”
Instead of telling her class to do crunches, she’ll tell them to “carve out space between your hips” like a Thanksgiving turkey. White might even round out the meal by telling her class, “Your leg is the main course here, but your abs are the side dishes.”
Creative, yes. Appetizing? Nah.
New York Pilates instructor Nwando Emejulu says the word “spicy” is her signature descriptor.
“I literally use it 15 times in one class,” she says. “If we’re doing an ab workout, I’ll say, ‘If you want that oblique work to get a little spicy, lift the leg up higher.’ ” She may even employ the name of her favorite hot sauce if she wants her class to really feel the burn, saying, “Get some Sriracha in your glute work — lift your heel a little more.”
I can’t help but think of the sexual nature of some of these phrases. As I flex that “meaty” muscle between my glute and my hamstring, I wonder if my instructor sees me not as a T-shirt-clad gal looking for an endorphin rush, but a bikini babe writhing on a pickup truck in a Carl’s Jr. commercial. Sorry, but that liquid dripping down my face is sweat, not burger juice.
Seriously, guys, can we dial back on all the toothsome talk? We’re getting hungrier by the minute here.
“Food is a good motivator,” White tells me.
“Using those [descriptors] makes it a little more appealing,” Emejulu says.
They’re not wrong. But look, I’m here in a workout class instead of eating a Big Mac. Please don’t remind me.