A Weekend Double–Non-Run Sweat

376 days ago, I went to my first barre class.

Saturday, I finally went back.

barre

(ps people don’t really wear shorts and compression sleeves to bar. stick to crops/tights and maybe a more graceful pose)

Bri is an instructor now, and bribed invited me to come get my plié on at one of her Xtend Barre classes. Truthfully I think she just has some cannibalistic need for fresh meat to torture – I saw her eyes light up when my knees started clanking together in the first 10 minutes and am pretty sure I heard an evil snigger when I tried to discreetly wipe the boob-sweat from my neck during bridge pose.

I did my long run (12 miles, booyah) before class so my legs were pretty toast even before we started, and I was pretty certain I’d be spending 90% of the time in the barre’s equivalent of child’s pose. The snarky “good luck!”s from Sarah and Katie as they left the 8:30 class (I went to the 9:45) didn’t help.

But I survived, for two reasons I think : 1) quick movements between exercises and 2) It was fun. We’d do a shoulder move for like 20 seconds, then a slightly different shoulder move, then another slight change, then move on to the other arm or muscle group. Same for legs, buns, abs, etc. So just as soon as you got to “OMG CAN’T DO ANOTHER SECOND LITERALLY GOING TO DIE” Bri was all peppy like, “and just 4, 3, 2, 1… good work! Ok get your weights MOVE NOW BACK TO THE BARRE!”

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from Xtend’s FB page. that’s Bri – participating, not teaching – in the grey/white black!

It was intense and I sweated and shook and collapsed on the floor afterwards – completely spent after maxing out every last ounce of energy from my baby muscles but loved it. (and yes, I’m quite sore today)

Like yoga, spin, and (I’d assume) other aerobics’y classes, what you get out of class is what you put in – take it kinda easy, kick your own ass, pick your poison.

And as a newbie, I didn’t feel intimidated or overly challenged by they technique or movements. Bri made it super easy to follow along, and came around making adjustments as needed. I’d assume that’s pretty standard, but it might just mean Bri’s extra awesome. Regardless, don’t shy away from barre just because you’ve “never done it” or “don’t want to look stupid” or “hate ballerinas” or anything. If you’re looking for an effective full-body strength workout, give the barre a shot.

No tutus required.

Unfortunately for me, the studio is 30+min away so regular attendance at Bri’s classes will be hard. I might look into one of the local studios, but classes are pretty pricey and I’d feel bad measuring everyone else against Bri and Xtend. Losing battle, there.

  • Have you taken a barre class? Were you scared your first time? If you haven’t, do you want to? Does anyone have pointe shoes they want to send me? I think that’s the natural progression from here…

Sarah OUaL

post-script : SR’s superhero status is confirmed – no idea how she regularly pulls doubles running AND barre’ing. Crazy woman.

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20 thoughts on “A Weekend Double–Non-Run Sweat

  1. I have not tried a barre class but I really want too! The only thing is there are no classes close to me. I think the closest class is about 50 minutes away. So I’ve been thinking about buying a dvd to try at home!
    Good run before the class!!

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  2. I have been dying to try out a barre class. I was hoping that maybe I could find a groupon on for it first because the classes here are pretty pricey. I am already paying for a gym membership for my husband and a crossfit membership for me + a running a coach. I wish that I had an unlimited supply of $$$ just for health & fitness.

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  3. I would LOVE to take a barre class (I did ballet for 15 years and miss what my dancing body looked like!) but all the cool, “trendy” classes like barre and aerial silks and TRX are only offered in Charleston and Greenville, SC, which are both about 1 1/2 hours away from where I am in good old Columbia. *Sigh* Maybe when I get to relocate in 4 years for residency….
    Oh, and I really do have a pair of pointe shoes in my closet if you feel the need to try it out…but tutu definitely required ;)

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  4. I used to run and do barre on the same day. Then I stopped doing strength classes on the same day because the next day I would have to do this hideous bracing to go to the bathroom and that just wasn’t fun. Now it’s just an easy couple of miles beforehand, if at all.

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  5. I tried barre last month but then injured myself running (cut up my hands – so running was okay, but not barre) so I hope to head back ASAP! It is HARD!

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  6. I also just got back into barre after about a 6 month hiatus. I forgot what a great workout it is! And I totally agree with you- it’s perfect because right when I feel like I can’t do one more second of butt lifting we move on to a whole different body group. Great workout- unfortunately I have no pointe shoes to share :-)

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  7. I do the Dailey Method (another barre class) as cross-training/strength/stretch during marathon training and I love it ! It’s super fun and the pressure of knowing the teacher and the class can see you makes me work harder than I would on my own.

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  8. So I didn’t see the X in Xtend at first, and I thought the name of the studio was “Tend Bar”/”Tend Barre.” That sounds like a barre class I’d be all over.
    I went to Dailey Method once and did a strange Ballet Body class during a trial membership at Crunch, but that’s it. And I also still have my pointe shoes!

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  9. Loved the first one I went to almost two weeks ago! Its far away for me as awell, but I have found some great youtube videos to do in the meantime! I too went on a run before class, so the fact I didn’t collapse even when other people had fresh legs made me feel pretty good!

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  10. Seeing as how I grew up a dancer and aspired to be a ballerina when I was like 7 (but there are no ballerina’s under 5 ft tall so that dream was crushed…) I really want to try a Barre class! There are only 2 that I know of – one 20 mins away and one 1 hour away – but they are both terribly expensive and out of range for me. It needs to get more popular so there are more options (aka cheaper options) around here! I commend your superhero greatness – 12 miles and a barre class. Ouch! P.S. I have lots of old small feet sized pointe shoes I could send – their already broken in ;)

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  11. I used to dance, ballet, jazz, tap and lyrical but I have never done a barre class. I remember how hard ballet was and I am not sure I want to revisit that! lol I used to be extremely flexible and ballet like but since I have become an “old lady” adult, I have zero flexibility lol

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  12. I got kicked out of ballet class at the age of 2. My parents tell me that during my class recital, all the other little girls were prancing around elegantly whereas I was stomping around like a baby elephant. (Their words). The dance teachers subtly suggested that my talents lay elsewhere.

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  13. eBay and craigslist are good places to look for pointe shoes.

    Do you have a railing (bannister, bathroom grab-bar, etc.) in your house or nearby? That’s what I’ve been using while I save up for barre class.

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  14. That’s crazy amazing! 12 miles then Barre? Wow! People think I’m crazy for doing several classes back to back or throughout the day but I seriously bow down to what you did. It’s true, Bri really is an extra amazing instructor and she does get a glimmer in her eyes before class starts. I hope you continue and reach ‘Barre Perfection’

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