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Fitness Classes for Weight Loss? No ma'am 🙅🏽‍♀️

Updated: Sep 22, 2022

If losing weight is your ONLY intention behind taking a fitness class, learn why this approach will not likely lead to the results you want.

Pre-pandemic Zumba® with Marissa at Her365 Fitness

Recently, I learned that my Zumba® class earned a spot on a top 10 list for best dance classes for weight loss in San Francisco. We came in at #4 (at the time of posting) thanks to our reviews and class bookings on ClassPass.

Her365 Fitness is located in the East Bay (Pinole to be specific), which for those of you outside of the Bay is about 25 miles across the San Francisco Bay from the City. But, for sure we'll accept being lumped into a San Francisco list! Shoot, we earned it!


ClassPass doesn't know this specifically, but we do not focus on movement for weight loss.

We're not against weight loss as a goal, but we are not for approaching the idea of fitness or exercise as a means to lose weight. And...our approach is supported by research.

Don't get me wrong: weight loss can be a "side effect" of moving more AND eating more nutritiously, but if losing weight is the ONLY intention behind taking a fitness class, then I need you to know that you may be setting yourself up for frustration and disappointment because it's not likely that you will achieve the long-term results you are seeking.

One of the reasons is that the goal of "weight loss" is typically driven by external motivation rather than internal motivation. That external motivation could be wanting your body to look a certain way (naked or otherwise) or because someone told you that you need to in order to be "healthier" or move better, or look "better". Essentially, you are motivated to change because of something that is outside of yourself.

And that's okay!

Because that can be the thing that gets you started moving more.

Here's the catch though, unless you connect your weight loss or exercise intentions to something deeper within yourself, that initial burst of motivation you felt when you started your new workout routine will be very difficult to stick to once that motivation wanes. Learn more about that here.

Do YOU even really WANT to lose weight? Are you feeling pressured to do so? Or do you simply want to feel better or stronger in your body?

The most important goal is taking care of your overall health, so you can increase your chances of leading a long and active life.

"Group fitness classes offer the opportunity to experience movement in positive, memorable, and purposeful ways, inspiring meaningful change both physically and mentally."

That's why, in my class, we keep our focus on enjoying moving our bodies rather than burning calories or "working off" the food we've eaten. Calories burned can be a helpful metric when learning how to balance your nutritional needs with your activity levels, but if you're "burning calories" just so you can eat, I'm wondering, how's that working for you?

My Zumba® Crew and the participants of the other classes here at Her365 Fitness will tell you, we are moving to get stronger and to feel better in our body and most of all to enJOY the privilege of being in the body that we have right now.

If you've been hesitant to try a class because you don't feel comfortable in your body, you are not alone. Many of our participants started out just like you and, after giving themself permission to try something new and maybe even a little scary or uncomfortable, they have found that taking classes with us actually helps them to become more comfortable in their body and increases their sense of self-efficacy (that's that "I've got this!" feeling). They stop noticing everyone around them and begin to focus on their own experience in a more positive way. Also, once they find a class they really enjoy, many of our participants discover that taking classes can help make sticking to a movement routine easier and more fun thanks to the built-in support and encouragement of other participants.

I've included a couple links below with some additional reading you may find helpful as you develop more self-awareness around your exercise or movement intentions.

And, if you're curious if my class is really as great for JOYFUL movement as I and my Zumba® Crew are saying it is, I invite you to take a class with me!

Check out our full class schedule for Zumba® classes and more behind the button below.


Additional Reading:



Hey there! My name is Maríssa Rivera-Davis (she/her). I am a certified womxn's fitness, nutrition, & wellness coach, licensed Zumba® Fitness instructor, and the founder of Her365 Fitness, a studio/gym & wellness community for womxn.

I help busy & over-stressed womxn find the time & energy to move more and eat better so they can develop self-care practices that feel good, that they enjoy, and that they can finally stick to.

My mission is to help womxn break free from the harmful cycles of dieting and the pursuit of body-image "ideals" so they feel empowered to live authentically & more joyfully in the body they have right now.

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1573 Tara Hills Dr | Pinole, CA 94564

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