Photo credit: Pure Barre
HAPPY NEW YEAR! 2014 is here!
Many of you have heard me talking about Pure Barre. I mentioned it briefly in one of my blog posts in the past and I have shared with you Pure Barre on Instagram. It’s time for me to share with you my personal experience with Pure Barre! Perfect timing for those who have New Year’s resolutions! :)
First, have you heard of Pure Barre in your area? You probably have. There are numerous Barre type workouts popping up all over but specifically, Pure Barre is fastest and most effective way to change your body. And it is above all, safe. One thing I will not stand for is folks who want to find a “fast and easy”‘ fix to losing weight or getting in shape. There is absolutely ZERO way to achieve all that and do zero work. Sorry to kill all your imaginary dreams, but there is no magic pill to losing weight. Like with anything, you have to work hard to get to your goal.
Let’s chat real quick about me and my lifestyle.
- Being a web developer, I work in front of a computer all day. 7:30am-4pm, Monday through Friday. It’s a pretty sedentary lifestyle.
- I’m also a food blogger/recipe developer. Meaning, on my days off, I test recipes in the kitchen. Testing recipes = taste-testing = my jeans aren’t happy.
- Prior to finding Pure Barre, I pretty much have tried every exercise class in the book. I’ve tried Jazzercise, Zumba, Spin, you name it. I’ve tried numerous gym memberships only to cancel them a few months later.
- I have zero coordination.
- I’m not the most flexible person in the world, even though I used to be a dancer. Those days are long gone ;)
- I absolutely loathe exercising. Thinking about it makes me want to eat more cookies and cheese.
I was driving down to the grocery store one day and I noticed this big red sign that said “Pure Barre,” on this retail strip. I came to a stop sign and peered in really quick. It looked barren and was still under construction. Shrugged my shoulders and kept on driving. Since I live about 30 seconds from this new Pure Barre location that was being built, I drove past it pretty much every day and I finally decided to just Google what this Pure Barre was all about.
Interesting. Another exercise class, but this time, it was something about utilizing the ballet barre to do isometric movements. My ballet days are long over so there was no way I could see myself doing any type of movements like that again. Plus, just the thought of going to an exercise class with skinny, mini girls intimidated me like whoa.
Photo credit: Pure Barre
The Pure Barre down the street from me opened in September but I was still ignoring it since I felt so burnt out by all these other exercise classes that I ended up quitting. I didn’t want to go and I was “fine” with my regular gym routine (ok – getting up at 4:45am was not ideal but at that point, I was desperate for something). Not sure what it was, but after weeks of mulling over just giving Pure Barre one try (and if I didn’t like it, I wouldn’t have to go back), I finally signed up for my first class. I seriously dreaded it to the core. I worried about it all day, the day leading up to my first evening class. “What if I can’t hold the postures as long as the other girls? What if I just completely mess up? What if I just don’t get it? What if the instructor is totally hard core and mean?” All these silly “what if’s” in my head.
I walked out of my first class with my entire body feeling like jello. And guess what? I was instantly HOOKED after my first class. I knew for sure I was going to pay for it the next morning, but oh my gosh, I loved being that sore. It was an amazing feeling. There were muscles on my body that were sore that I didn’t even know existed.
I’ve been going to Pure Barre now for about 2 months and I can tell you, I have never ever found an exercise class or routine as enjoyable as Pure Barre. I actually crave the burn of my muscles, I miss classes when I have to miss them in the evenings due to prior engagements or being out of town. Jason sees how thrilled I am every evening that I have Pure Barre class. It’s kind of weird to think of myself as having a regular exercise routine and being so happy about it. It’s just ’cause I’ve always been so opposed to working out.
Photo credit: Pure Barre
A few take-aways for those that are still on the fence about it:
- Common misconception: “so it’s like ballet.” Sort of. Just cause a barre is involved doesn’t mean it’s ballet. It’s more like ballet, pilates, and yoga combined into one intense and amazing workout. You don’t have to have any prior dance experience for this class. You aren’t doing ballet. You use the barre for most of your thigh and seat workouts but it’s mostly just there for support. You’re not like twirling or whatever.
- There is nothing to be nervous about. I realized after my first few classes that the instructors and everyone in that class are nice and genuine people. They were in your shoes at one point or another. No one started Pure Barre classes knowing exactly what to do. That’s what the instructors are there for. I seriously love every single one of my instructors at the Pure Barre I go to. They’re SO helpful, motivating, and encouraging. I think those three things are major when it comes to any exercise class.
- After a few classes, you’ll just get it. You figure out what “tucking” is, you figure out what the Pure Barre “ledge” is, you figure out what the best position is to get your “seat” to be fabulous. Pure Barre studios offer “Breaking Down The Barre” workshops where they literally break down every single move for you so it helps you understand each move and it helps you improve your technique so you can be sure you’re getting the best workout.
- Shaking. It’s a good thing. I love when my muscles shake. It means I’m pushing myself to my limit and that is where I see results.
- No one in class cares how you’re doing your moves; no one is class is staring at you. Everyone is so focused on themselves and so focused on getting the technique right and looking themselves in the mirror that no one is looking around the room being like, ‘oh snap, did you see that girl over there? She is totally doing it wrong!’ …so get that out of your head as a reason to not go!
- The instructors are there to help. They’re there to motivate you and help you push through your last ten. They make it a point to learn everyone’s name. You have no idea how awesome (and motivating) it is to hear, “looking good, Julie!” or “YES, JULIE!” in class. It makes you want to work that much harder.
- You’ll make friends. Trust me. Everyone is so easy to get along with and everyone pretty much has the same goal in that class!
- I’ve gotten two of my friends to come with me and they BOTH enjoyed it and have returned! :)
- The music is AWESOME. I’ve even created my own “Pure Barre” playlist on my iPhone. The music gets you going, pumps you up, and I just want to work harder when the songs come on!
RESULTS: I’m sure you’re dying to know how much weight I’ve lost, etc. right? To be honest, I don’t know how much weight I’ve lost. I don’t really step on the scale anymore because it’s just a number to me and I don’t let it define me; and if it’s something that will upset me, why even bother? What matters to me is how great I feel and how awesome I feel when I button my jeans. What matters to me is seeing my waistline shrink, my jeans falling down (and having to use a belt), and watching parts of my body get definition and tone. Yes, I’ve lost inches and I’ve lost a jean size. I’m way more tone in my core than I ever was before and my arms are showing definition! Also! This is one of the biggest accomplishments for me: I could never do the splits. Being a ballerina, it was kind of devastating for me that I couldn’t do them. Guess what? Pure Barre has given me so much range of flexibility that I think I’m the most flexible than I’ve ever been. I can do the splits now!! Oh my gosh, it was such an amazing feeling that day when I just went for it and tried. I was beaming from ear to ear!
Photo credit: Love. Luck. Kisses & Cake.
Anyone going to try Pure Barre for the first time? Or are you already hooked? Let me know!
This is not a sponsored post by Pure Barre. It’s strictly my own personal account of my experience with Pure Barre and my desire to share with everyone my addiction!