Tuesday, May 30, 2017

Barre So Hard: My New Fitness Obsession

Hey, y'all!

Guess who's back again (cue Bruno Mars)? lol

Today's blog post is about something I just recently discovered and now have a new love for. It's been around for a while in the fitness world, but somehow I missed it! Until now...Yup, barre is the word!

I hopped on Groupon the other day after talking to my new friend Alli (a fellow Paleo girlie and Crossfitter) from Missouri. She'd mentioned that she had taken some barre classes and expressed how amazing they are for leg and core fitness. I was intrigued! I had to check this out!! So I did a search for barre classes on the Groupon app and a few results popped up. The best deal was for ten barre classes for $59 with a local studio called ToddPilates and Barre. They have three locations around the Austin area, so I signed up for my first class on Sunday afternoon with Eve Springer (a former dancer). It was a sixty minute class with thirty minutes at the barre, fifteen minutes on the mat, and ten minutes with light weights. Man, was it intense! I was dripping with sweat when I was finished. I'm a Zumba girl, and I took ballet as a kid, so I do have some level of coordination at least. This helped me out a lot with the lifts, plies, and arm movements that we did during the class!

ToddPilates & Barre South location in Austin, TX 


So, what exactly is barre? It's basically a combination of ballet with cardio, Pilates, and yoga. And it's one hell of a workout! The Sunday class was set to music, mostly Prince and some older stuff, so that was right up my alley! We started out with some light weights (five pound) and did some warm-up squats, arm movements, and lifts on the balls of our feet. I was able to keep my balance pretty well, even without the support of the barre! Amazing, considering it's been years since I've done ballet.

After the warm-up, we went into some heavy barre cardio using a squishy ball placed between the inner-thighs. We did a lot of stretching, hand weight exercises to tone the arms, and of course lifts and plies. I was in my element! Sporting my new (now drenched) tank with the word 'Strong' on it, I felt truly empowered. We continued with some mat work using our weights and a flexible hoop that is also placed between the thighs. We squeezed, we lifted, we smiled, and we sweated our collective asses off! It was uh-mazing. Truly. After the class ended, I immediately went up to Eve and told her how much I enjoyed her class. She said I did well, just needed to make sure to keep my feet parallel during barre work. I.can.do.this. haha!

So, that was Sunday. I was off work for Memorial Day, so I decided to try the Monday Barre Express class with Doug at the Round Rock studio. It's a forty-five minute class with a LOT of barre cardio, and some mat work. Whoa, Nelly! This class kicked my ass!! Doug is the man! He had some great music bumping (including some Sean Paul), and we did a ton of lifts, arm movements, plies and resistance band work. Once again, dripping with sweat, I spoke to Doug after class. I told him about my thirty pound weight loss from going gluten-free then Paleo, and he told me that he is also Paleo! We are everywhere! *evil laugh* We talked about the class a little, and the Paleo lifestyle. He's not as strict as I am, but it was great to meet someone like-minded that I can talk fitness and nutrition with. And dude's in amazing shape! He's got an athletic build, and is of course, very toned. I think he will be my new inspiration to get in even better shape!

I'm actually going to skip my Wednesday night Zumba class to go to Doug's Wednesday night Barre class *gasp* Yes, I'm starting to love barre that much! It's fun, exhausting, and brings me back to my childhood as a little ballerina :) Plus, there's nothing like a good sweat to feel a sense of accomplishment! I went on Etsy today and purchased this tank for class:
Pretty clever, eh?


So I guess that about wraps it up for this post! I'm excited to sweat some more, work on my fitness and hopefully get some killer legs and arms out of my barre experience!

Oh, just one more thing before I sign off! I just got the Autoimmune Paleo Cookbook by Mickey Trescott in the mail today! It's a gorgeous hardcover book with some totally drool-worthy recipes inside! Some of the desserts look especially amazing! Mickey Trescott is an AIP goddess and I follow her Autoimmune Wellness podcast. She's so knowledgeable about all things AIP! She's a great one to follow if you have any sort of autoimmune condition! I'm not 100% AIP, but I'm pretty darn close. Her recipes contain no nightshades, which is what urged me to purchase this book. Makes for a pretty coffee table book too!

My new cookbook! #love!!!

Until next time, y'all, keep on sweatin' and being well on your Paleo journey!

Love,

Rachel
 


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