It has been almost two years since my first barre class, and I’m still a firm believer in the workout. I still have an unlimited monthly membership, and aside from a few periods here and there where my professional or personal life threw me off course, I’ve attended classes consistently enough to make the unlimited class worth it. Now that I’ve saved money through paying off debt, I’ve bought a yoga punch card. I used my Christmas money from my Dad and bought 10 classes without the overwhelming guilt of spending money on hot yoga when I already have barre. Trying a new class every week or two has been great. But it inspired me to think about all of the reasons that I truly love barre workouts.
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I did dance as a child, pre-teen and teen, but you don’t have to be a ballerina to enjoy barre classes. Likewise, you don’t have to be a girl. If you’re thinking about giving barre a try, I really encourage you to do so. Then, please come back here and tell me what you thought! I’d love to hear about it!
1) I can’t leave when I’m feeling lazy.
Have you ever started a workout, felt over-it before you got to the gym or even began your run? Then, have you ever gone home after like 15-30 minutes because you’re just not in the mood? Yea, me too.
Have you ever tried walking out of a group fitness class for the same reason? Yea, I didn’t think so.
2) I notice results really quickly.
I will start with the disclaimer that I was blessed with amazing metabolism, and have never had to try to lose weight. But I promise this isn’t my experience alone. I hear all of the girls who start going consistently noticing that they’re seeing fast results! Personally, I love when I can see my shoulder muscles, and when my abs start to get some definition. While I’ve always been rather skinny, I never had a shape until barre.
When I first started, I noticed results within a couple of weeks, and if my workout schedule gets screwed up and I don’t go consistently for a few weeks, it only takes about 1-2 consistent weeks (3-4 times a week) before I see the muscles and definition come back!
3) I feel the good kind of sore the next day.
Walking up the stairs doesn’t necessarily feel fun, but knowing I’m sore because I worked super hard the night before and I EARNED that soreness, feels really good.
To combat soreness, I use this arnica gel. It’s also good for other types of pain, like shoulders if you work at a computer all day.
4) I have made new friends.
I’m kind of shy around new people, but when you get on a consistent workout pattern with a stranger, you eventually start saying hi to each other when you come in, and “great job!” to each other when you leave.
When I first started going, there were a few ladies that talked to each other a lot. I later learned two were a mother-daughter duo. As I went more frequently, I got to know a little about them. After one class, a girl asked to exchange phone numbers to save each other’s spot and grab each other weights if we get stuck at work a few minutes late. I texted J, “I MADE A FRIEND!” I was so excited and he was super proud of me.
There’s something about being worked to your limit for an hour that makes you bond with the people around you!
5) It makes me feel powerful.
If you ever feel like you’re incapable of accomplishing things, try doing like 200 squats in one hour to Britney Spears or Destiny’s Child. You’ll feel like you can take on the WORLD!
When I was really struggling with anxiety last year, I felt weak. Then I would see myself in the mirror lifting 60+ reps of 5-8 pound weights (it doesn’t sound like much, but try a barre class and tell me what you think then!), or doing several minutes of wall-sits, or”ballet burpees,” and my confidence began to build again. If my body is powerful enough to do all of those amazing things, my mind can release anxiety!
6) It helps me create a barrier between work and personal life so I have more balance.
I stop thinking about work by the time I go home from my barre workouts! I used to hate being a lawyer. Then at a CLE once there was an ethics session about burnout. Everyone went because ethics credits are really hard to get, and we have to get a certain number every year or three years depending on the state I’m reporting for. During this session, the speaker asked who enjoyed being a lawyer. Some people raised their hands. Then she asked who worked out. Almost every single one of the people who enjoyed being a lawyer, also raised their hands.
I have a couple of yoga mats, but this is my favorite yoga mat. I also bought this towel that reminds me of space and the stars. I can’t wait for it to arrive! Powerful workout supplies and accessories really help my motivation!
I figured it wouldn’t hurt to give it a shot and see if it helped, so I joined the YMCA. A couple of years later, I started barre. The YMCA helped a ton, but barre helped even more because I had to be consistent to 1) justify the cost, and 2) comply with the RSVP system my studio has. Running and other workouts help me as well, but since the internal will-power to stay at the gym longer than I want to is taken out of the equation (see #1), I have a whole hour to work through the stress and tension of the day. By the end of class, I’m only thinking about taking a shower and eating dinner! Because of this I sleep better and go to work more relaxed. It’s really nice.
Have you ever gone to a barre class? What did you think?? Did you like it? Why or why not?
Are you interested in trying a barre class, but not sure what to expect? Check out this post on what to bring to your first barre class!