Thoughts on Barre (So Far)

>> Friday, February 6, 2015

On Monday we had around 10 inches of snow. A couple days later another 3 inches. And last night another 2 or 3 more. I hear another storm is in the forecast for early next week. We’ve also had more negative windchill days. None of this is surprising. Still, (good) running without a gym membership has been elusive, and not for lack of trying.

Our new neighborhood is great, but people don’t love shoveling their sidewalks. Many streets don’t even have sidewalks, really, which leaves running in the street often as the sun is setting. I do try to make it to a local path a few times a week, but with Ada’s preschool often closed due to the weather, well, you see the excuses piling up. Running in the winter is hard. Some years I trudge through better than others. This year, I think I get a B+.

Along with cycling at home and doing some cross-country skiing, I’ve been doing Barre -- and I thought I’d give you a quick update on how I’m liking it so far. No. Loving it. My trial with Barre 3 Online ended earlier this week, and I decided to keep it up at least over the next month or two. I’m majorly on the bandwagon right now. We’ll see how long it lasts, but since I’m seeing some results, I’d like to keep the good stuff going.

// I don’t know if I’ve lost any weight doing Barre. My instincts are telling me no, but I’ll find out today at my fertility appointment. At the same time, I’m noticeably slimmer even after a couple weeks. My jeans are slightly loose. My butt is lifted -- no joke -- and my thighs are leaner. It’s not too dramatic from an outward view -- but I can tell a huge difference.

// My flexibility is back again. With so many yoga and stretching movies incorporated into the workouts, I’ve been taking the time to get limber again. I used to do lots of yoga and sort of took my natural flexibility for granted. Now I want to keep it up because it feels so good.

// My strength is, like, whoa. I haven’t done any major strength training consistently -- bodyweight or otherwise -- in a long while. Accordingly, I’ve been a little weak compared to previous years. I can already see some gains in this area by being able to hold certain poses much longer. And generally feeling toned. Even using 2 pound weights has my arms feeling it the next day, but without extreme soreness.

// After completing the workouts, I feel energized, and I can’t always say that for running. I think it has something to do with impact. I like having something in my routine that challenges me without jarring me. Not that my running form is bad, but sometimes it’s just rough on the body to do 5 or 6 days a week. The tiny motions in Barre are surprisingly difficult . . . but at the same time restorative, if that makes any sense. In the middle of a “class” I feel like I want to curse, yet at the end, I want to give someone a hug.

// I’ve also been happy to find a workout I think I could keep up when I’m lucky enough to get pregnant again. I’ve already written in numerous posts how I’ll cool it on the running the next time around. No half marathon races for me. But keeping fit and active is a huge priority, as I think it helped me a lot mentally and physically during my last pregnancy. Some of the moves in Barre remind me a lot of my favorite prenatal workout by Summer Sanders.

// I do wish we had a Barre studio or class in the area. I’m getting slightly tired of doing the same workouts again and again (though I’m excited to try a new runner workout that was posted recently). I also have enjoyed group fitness classes in the past for the social aspect, and I’m more alone than ever talking to my TV during nap time. But online workouts are undeniably convenient. No excuses, right?

So, at this point I’d highly recommend at least trying Barre if you’re interested. I have no affiliation with the studio or incentive to share my feelings. It’s just something that’s helping me get through winter this year.

If you have questions, I’d be happy to answer!

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