Thursday, January 9, 2014

Pure Barre Review

Pure Barre is one of those workout things that I had never heard of until a friend of mine posted about on Facebook. Advertised as "high intensity, low impact", I was intrigued. I have exercise induced asthma and it seems like everything that falls under exercise triggers it. Swimming in an indoor pool isn't as bad, but even that will hit it eventually. And feeling short of breath is not a feeling I relish. 

I decided to give it a try nonetheless, after she said it probably wouldn't mess with my asthma. And after all, why turn down a free "try-me" class? I arranged for my mom to watch Saoirse while I took the opportunity to "lift, tone, and burn."

I was instructed to get a ball roughly the size of a cantaloupe, a set of 2 lb weights, and a stretchy tube thing, and then I found a spot in the center-ish area of the floor, as was suggested by the instructor. 

First off let me say, I have no idea how these instructors keep sounding so perky through the whole thing. 

We started off with knee lifts to warm up, some opposite knee to opposite elbow kind of stuff where it took me a good 5 tries to get my legs and arms working on a diagonal. For someone who has a dance background, I am amazingly awful at figuring out where my body is in space. Following that, we picked up our weights to work the shoulders and arms. I was at least mildly concerned for my rotator cuff, despite the fact they watch your form so you don't hurt yourself. However, courtesy of this, I now use my baby as a weight to the tune of "and lift, for two, and down, for two." Then there were planks, and push ups, and things that I don't know the name for. And I became intensely aware of how little upper body strength I have. Irish dance does not focus on upper body strength at all. As a result, my legs are strong, my core is decent, and my arms suck. 

Finally, after what felt like it had to be at least halfway through class, the instructor says, "And that finishes our warm-up."

I nearly fell out in the floor right then and there. I'm not sure why this shocked me so much, considered we hadn't even approached the bar part of Pure Barre yet. My shoulders hurt. 2 lb weights get really heavy after about 5 minutes. 

I'll leave some of this to the imagination as the "seat and thighs" section at the barre varies from week to week. Suffice to say, my butt hurt by the end of it. And my legs shook through most of it. 

We finished up with ab work. And it definitely works the abs. I don't know that I have ever been so grateful to see my mom walking with Saoirse (them being back at Pure Barre meant class was nearly over). Holding my baby after class hurt. My shoulders were what I felt the class in first. Not surprising since my arms are my weakest area. 

The next morning was when I felt every muscle. Coughing hurt. Getting out of bed hurt. I then went and bought a 5 classes for $51 Groupon and vowed to go once a week. It was such a workout. I've now been for 3 classes. Everyone I've talked to about it says how hard it is, especially that first class. And then they go back. And honestly, it keeps kicking your butt, at least best as I can tell. But I had to share this with everyone. 

You can try out one class for free. There's a Groupon for new clients (5 classes for $51 or 10 for $90 ish- must be used within 30 or 45 days respectively). There's a New Mom special where you get 3 months unlimited for $390 or so. Which is less than the $480 or so for 3 months unlimited normally. It's expensive but it will whoop your butt into shape quickly if you go the 3-4 times a week that's recommended. I can only pull off 1 time a week right now due to having to have someone watch Saoirse, but 1x a week is better than nothing. 

I definitely recommend this workout. 

This review was not requested nor endorsed by Pure Barre or Pure Barre Little Rock. I got no payment or free goodies for this review. This is all my opinion and my money being spent. 

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