I adjust my cheap, gold, size-too-small conical corset, take a deep breath and gingerly start limbering up.
In the mirrors that surround the dance floor I see the reflection of a ruddy-cheeked, wholesome woman raising her leg.
Am I really ready to work out like Madonna?
Its been said the 53-year-old superstar is tacky, past it, a lip-synching fraud even… but she has never been in better shape.
She has a fearsome physique and a bulging pair of 14.5in biceps partly thanks to her personal trainer Nicole Winhoffer.
So when gym bunny Nicole offered me a unique insight into Madonnas world of fitness, I felt I ought to get the scoop.
And so it is I find myself dressed ludicrously in homage to the singer at the Danceworks studios near Marble Arch in London, about to undergo a typical Madonna workout.
I jokingly apologise that my outfit is hideous, forgetting Americans and irony are not natural bedfellows.
It goes over Nicoles head and she replies: Dont worry whatever makes you feel desirable. That corset thing you have on, which is a little bit too small for you, acts as a compression unit.
Madonna and I actually wear compression clothing to exercise in it helps keep your body connected and warm, and helps you stay more in tune with your body. Just so long as youre comfy.
Rescue me: Clemmie finds the workout a touch strenuous
The 16 plastic padded corset is itchy and my knee-high stockings keep bunching up fetchingly at the ankle. Of course I am not comfy. But, gamely, I crack on.
As Nicole, 27, who is based in the US but is currently on the road with Madonna on her MDNA world tour, spreads plain towels on the floor, I ask for the secret behind her clients whippet-like frame.
The answer? Vitamin B12 and guarana-injected gummi bears. Truly.
Madonna really likes them, explains Nicole. Theyre all natural, infused with vitamin B12, which is essential for women, and guarana for a boost.
Shell have a couple if shes feeling a little low on energy.
Sadly, vitamin B12 and guarana-injected gummi bears are not available where I get my pick n mix, so I ask for other tips.
Dedication and discipline, she adds.
Food-wise, in nearly four years I have never seen Madonna eat an unhealthy snack.
“She eats food for fuel. She is an athlete with a very demanding show.
“Everything she puts into her body has a nutritional value and its for energy.
Trying hard: But it’s not all hard work as Clemmie finds something to laugh about
Nicole none-too-subtly glances repeatedly at the towels and I realise I cannot delay the hard work any longer.
Reluctantly, I move to the centre of the floor while Nicole walks over to the sound system and starts pressing buttons.
Im in charge of the playlists, she explains. Madonna loves all kinds of music electro, hip-hop, techno and sometimes she works out to her own stuff.
Sure enough, out blasts Give Me All Your Luvin the video to which Nicole choreographed at approximately 110 decibels.
For eight minutes Im pummelled into submission. Playing back my dictaphone, I hear Nicole chirpily bellowing encouragement at me as I am rendered incapable of speech.
If I listen very carefully, over the pounding bass, I can hear rasping sounds and the occasional heave. This is me.
At one point, during a particularly strenuous scissor split, where you jump into a lunge, I gag slightly.
This warrants praise from the grinning masochist Nicole. Brilliant! Thats the spirit! she chirps.
I gag again. By the end of our workout, I am sweating like a boar. Nicole is immaculate.
Vogue idea: Nicole has to step in
You did great! she lies. What we just did was choreographed. I consider that dancing… you just danced and you didnt even know it!
Actually, if I tried this in my local Wetherspoons, I think Id be thrown out. Or certified. I decide not to point this out.
New Yorker Nicole is a former dancer who has appeared in Broadway shows such as Wicked and 42nd Street. She started working with Madonna on her 2008 world tour.
Her workouts are based on stretch endurance, speed, agility, physiology, dance and kinetics.
So how does Madge get those famous biceps? By working out, twice a day, six days a week.
But we dont do push-ups and she doesnt do running, Nicole says.
Because Im an artist I work hard to make sure each workout is fresh and creative.
Im focused on taking care of Madonnas body because its such a hectic schedule.
Her whole body is strong, with no weak spots… I keep trying to find one!
Into the groove: Our Clemmie fights the pain barrier
Not bad for a woman seven years short of collecting her pension. I ask if she has a nickname for Madonna.
SuperMadge? I suggest. No, she responds, looking slightly appalled.
Nicole tells me Madonna intends to retain her phenomenal physique long into her 60s and 70s.
The aim is to maintain, she adds.
Incredibly, Nicole reveals, Madonna has body fat of just 6%, compared to the female average of 27%. To re-iterate, Madonna is 53.
Not surprisingly, Nicole, who flies across the world by private jet alongside her client, is pretty ambitious herself.
She helps run the stars Hard Candy fitness club chain and at the end of the year she is bringing out her first fitness DVD, Addicted To Sweat, based on one of Madonnas favourite classes.
With our fitness session almost over, I ask Nicole what its like working alongside one of the planets most famous women.
It is amazing, it is difficult and it is the most challenging thing I have ever done, she smiles.
But Madonna knows exactly what she wants, which makes my job easy. In fact, Ive got the best job in the world. She is an inspiration to me.
“She never misses a workout, never makes an excuse and always works hard.
Phew. And there I was thinking that Madge and I had nothing in common.
Iconic: Madonna’s Blonde Ambition look from 1990
WEIGHT: 8st 2lb
HEIGHT: 5ft 5in
EXERCISE: daily dance and stretching
DIET: chicken & veg, kabbalah water
HEIGHT: 5ft 2IN
EXERCISE: running, showbiz parties
DIET: champagne, pick n mix
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