Boston’s Got A New Barre {My first FlyBarre class recap}

Before I get into my recap of the barre class I took at Flywheel, I wanted to let you know that Flywheel is hosting a MS Hope For A Cure event on March 28th. It is a really great sounding event and I hope to be able to make it!

WHAT: Located in the Prudential Center, Boston’s premier indoor cycling studio, Flywheel Sports, will host MS Cycle for a Cure and the National Multiple Sclerosis Society on March 28 in an effort to raise awareness and critical funding for multiple sclerosis research.
In this one-day inspiring event, riders will sweat for a cause and be challenged to raise funds and come together to participate with the local community in the charitable indoor cycling event. Flywheel will offer four dedicated sessions of empowering instruction with all proceeds benefitting the National MS Society’s NOW campaign for research.

WHERE: Flywheel Sports at the Prudential Center 800 Boylston Street · Boston, MA 02199
WHEN: March 28, 2015
Registration begins at 2:30pm
Available sessions: 3:00pm, 4:00pm, 5:00pm, 6:00pm
COST: $25 per person

And now to the recap! One of the best perks of being a blogger is getting a chance to take classes at various fitness studios in exchange for a blog post, so I jumped at the chance to try a class at Flywheel’s newest addition: FlyBarre. Since I love the indoor cycling classes at Flywheel, I had no doubts that I would also love their new barre class.

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I wasn’t wrong! Although barre classes aren’t my favorite way to workout, they are a fun addition to my regular workouts and they ALWAYS leave me shaking! It’s something about those little weights that kills me, no matter what my current strength level is. I took the 5:15pm class with Azure and not only was she adorable, she was a really tough, but super motivating instructor that made the class fun.

Here’s a little about the class from their website: Classes are highly energetic and fast-paced while systematically working each muscle group through a sequence of focused movements, or “pulses.” We change our routines frequently and use a wide variety of props to tighten muscles and keep things interesting. You’ll never experience the same class twice.
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This Week: Workouts, Gearing Up for Holiday Season & Things I’m Looking Forward To

Good morning! How was your Thanksgiving? I had such an awesome time being home in Maine for an extended period of time. It’s really the only time I feel completely relaxed and could literally not leave the house for days. Doesn’t sound like me, huh? I’m SO excited that day kicks off the first day of my Happy, Healthy, Fit 24 Day Challenge. Thanks to all of you who have signed up to participate! Today, set your timer for 60 seconds and rock out your push-ups!

Today also marks the first day of December, which means the start of holiday season. I’m sure I’m not alone when I say I’ve got a number of things on my calendar already. I’ve got events Thursday-Sunday this week, and although they are all FUN things, it’s just a lot. This season, I’m going to work on taking more time for myself and politely turning down some engagements. The hardest part with this is that I want to go to everything, but it ends up being too much and I want to avoid the stress/overwhelm this season of having too many plans. That said, I’m not sure how well this will go over because I have severe #FOMO, BUT, I’m going to try 🙂

Last Week’s Workouts

  • Monday- I was supposed to teach a double, one class in the morning and one at night, but no one showed up for my morning class so I ended up doing my own strength session on my own. I knew I’d be teaching cardio kickboxing after work, but I had gotten up and to the gym at 6am so I wasn’t going to leave there without doing something. That little something left me sore for 3 days!
  • Tuesday- I went to the gym during lunch and ran 3.25 miles and did a few planks before calling it a day.
  • Wednesday- Rest day
  • Thursday- I filmed a few videos and then did this 20 minute AMRAP workout. I got through just shy of 8 rounds and boy did it kick my butt! I was surprised at how hard it was by the 5th and 6th round.

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  • Friday- My sister and I got up and went to the gym. I was so excited to be there because we weren’t on a schedule and it was mid-morning. I did 20 minutes on the stair stepper before doing an entirely Kettlebell focused workout. It kinda kicked my butt and I kinda loved it. I ended with some core work using this awesome trampoline- want one of these!

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  • Saturday- I went to a Core Fusion Barre class at Exhale Spa with my sister and my friend Amanda. The class was killer! I’m not always a fan of barre classes (I am generally frustrated because I can’t tell if I’m doing it right!), but I loved this one. Chrissy is awesome and her class was a good mix of weights/upper body strength and then we worked through all parts of the legs and core. I was so sore on Sunday!
  • Sunday- Rest day

This Week’s Workouts

  • Monday- I may try to get in a lunch break workout while I’m working from home. I’ve decided that I really prefer to have my workout done before I start work or during lunch so I can have an evening where I’m done work and done my workout by 4:30. It’s awesome. I’ll also be doing a minute of push-ups. Wonder how many I can do!
  • Tuesday- I may go to the gym during lunch for some weights, no cardio.
  • Wednesday- Back to teaching my UXF Burn!! I also need to do a no-equipment necessary workout as part of the #happyhealthyfit challenge, so I will probably fit one of those in before teaching.
  • Thursday- I have after work plans so I will likely workout during lunch.
  • Friday- Rest day.
  • Saturday- Today’s challenge is a full body workout, so I will probably do one I posted in this Week 1 details post, or maybe another Kettlebell workout?
  • Sunday- Rest day

Things I’m Looking Forward To

I’m so excited for the start of December! Although it is a crazy time of year, I do love the hustle and bustle of the holidays and the Christmas decorations and general cheer. I’m also excited to get together with various groups of friends throughout the week, as well as celebrate my sister’s birthday on Sunday!

Questions for you: What was the best workout you had last week? Do you like Barre classes? What are you looking forward to this week? How you handle the craziness the holiday season can bring?

Wellness By The Water Retreat

You guys. I had the most amazing day on Sunday at the Wellness By The Water Retreat, which was hosted at Le Meridien Cambridge hotel. Going into this day, I knew that I would be in my element as the website described it as:

Join us for a luxury fitness and wellness retreat in the city. Escape to beautiful Boston for a full day of fitness, yoga, nutrition, spa services and wellness.Sought after professionals brought to you for all of your wellness needs including:

  • Bootcamp
  • Yoga
  • Stretch & Breath Work
  • Nutrition
  • Spa Services
  • Wellness Services
  • Catered nutritious meals and snacks
  • Health & Wellness companies providing information and samples of their products!

But I had no idea just how awesome it would be. I mean, who wouldn’t want to go to that! (well, some people, but I am guessing most of my B2B readers would think it’s pretty amazing).

Anyway, I arrived at the hotel just around 9am, quickly realizing that I forgot my yoga mat (which they reminded us to bring in an email that I looked at earlier that morning). #epicfail. I did OK without one, but I did feel a little silly! After I checked in, I met up with Athena and Ashley. I was SO excited to get to hang out with two fitness enthused people like myself for the day, as well as many, many more people just like us!

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athena, ashley, me

Photo Credit: Athena

 Shortly after everyone settled down, the two creators of the event, Kendall and Celeste, introduced themselves and gave us an overvue of the day.  By 9:20, we were already on our first workout of the day: 30 minutes of Boot Camp with Celeste!

026It was awesome! We did some really neat partner exercises such as partner sit-ups, “run the plank” and partner lat. pull downs, and I can’t wait to bring some of them into my classes! After boot camp, we broke out into smaller groups based on the color on our name tags.

029We were scheduled for 30 minutes of the following workouts:

  • Tai Chi with Julio
  • Barre with Tessa Hollyn Taub
  • Pilates with Daniel Cohen (a personal trainer at Sports Club LA)

Barre. Omgoodness. Let me tell you were my legs and core BURNING! I have done a couple of other Barre classes, but no one has ever made me hold a plie squat so darn low, with so many pulses. I was literally dripping. Tessa was AMAZING and I totally want to take private classes with her. I loved it! Tai Chi was pretty cool as well, since that was something that was totally new to me. I work at the Y with Julio, who lead us in Tai Chi and his knowledge and passion for this was wonderful.  We focused on a lot of breathing in Pilates, which couldn’t have come at a better time for me. As you have probably noticed, May has been a little rough for me thus far, so taking some time to really BREATHE was juuuust what I needed!

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By the time I was through all of these classes, I was really quite thankful that lunch was next on the agenda. We ventured downstairs and couldn’t believe the meal we were served. I was expecting a buffet or something simple, but we were served a lovely salad and main meal (we called it the Wellness Wedding meal!).

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Kendall also spoke about a few ways to “lighten up” for the summer. I am not sure I could cut out dairy all together, but it was interesting to hear the alternatives to dairy! I am always up for hearing about different food “lifestyles”, so I loved learning about all sorts of different new food ideas and recipes throughout the day.

032After lunch, we had time to mingle and browse through the vendors before attending the 6 different 20 minute sessions scheduled out for us. I loved this station by Eventbrite!

040Yum, yum yum! Athena and I had to pose for a pic!

britemix with athenaDuring this “break” before the afternoon sessions started, there was also a “photo booth” area run by Lucie Wicker Photography. Omg I LOVE these things!! Of course we had to jump in for some fun!

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photo-booth-4So fun! After everyone had some time to mingle and check out all of the vendors, the afternoon sessions began. We had 20 minutes at each station, which felt a little rushed at times, but only because I was always so interested in every company that we were learning about! I started at the John Hancock table and learned about financial things (sorry for my lack of better terminology!)

037From there, I went to the Organization Table with Allison Webber, which I totally loved. She was amazing and super interactive and could really just read people very well. She said that 50% of her job is therapy and working with people to let go of their issues in order to de-clutter and organize.

I was so looking forward to my next stop: massages with Body Waves Massage. As you know, I work out A LOT and carry LOTS of heavy bags, so I am always in need of a massage. I stole this pic from Athena’s blog that she got from Celeste Pratt on Instagram and had to use it because that’s me getting a massage in the back right! She said I was really tight, especially my right quad, so I have been trying to foam roll more actively this week. #hurtssogood

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My next sessions were acupuncture with Synergy Acupuncture and skin care and nutrition with MZ Skincare. I have never had acupuncture before so I was really excited about this! I told her I had shoulder issues and she did a little extra for me. I didn’t notice a huge change, but I wonder if going to acupuncture for full sessions would help alleviate my injuries?? The presentation by MZ Skincare was also really interesting in that they gave us good tips on choosing REAL sunscreens and how to clear up your skin from the inside out, meaning, learning about how to feed your body nutrients that help with your skin. Very interesting.

 Finally, I went to a CrossFit class for a WOD (workout of the day) with Sarah Loomis. Funny side note: Sarah worked for the BSC and taught UXF and actually subbed one of my classes! Small world, indeed! Here was our WOD:

038Good thing I am totally loving real burpees 😉 we skipped the 21 reps due to time, but did 15 reps of burpees and lunges, followed immediately by 9 reps of both. If that doesn’t get your heart rate up, I am not sure what will! I also loved the EMOM (Every Minute on the Minute) workout because it was a great way to push YOURSELF, which I am a fan of. The goal was to try to have MORE rest time every round… I can’t say I did, but I did move a lot faster from round 1 to round 2!

Lastly, our FINAL event of the day was a nice, closing yoga session with Kendall. Another funny side note, Kendall was auditioning at the BSC for yoga the same day that I was auditioning for kickboxing and TBC. I knew I recognized her!

kendall-teaching-yoga1From Celeste’s Instagram

After a very busy and physically active day, a nice, restorative yoga session was just what all of us needed. I haven’t been practicing yoga because of my shoulder injury, but it felt really great on Sunday!

Overall, I cannot fully express how wonderful the day was. Athena did a wonderful recap of the day, too, so check it out! As she said, it felt great to be in our “happy places” all day. Huge thanks to Kendall and Celeste for organizing such an incredible event and day! I can’t wait for the next one!

Questions for you: What’s your “happy place”? Ever been to a health and wellness retreat?

Weekly Workouts

Holy Moly! Monday, already?! I had an incredibly busy weekend, but let me tell you was it fun! Before I get to recapping, let’s focus on workouts and getting back on track (even though I am almost positive that today will be a rest day since yesterday was an intense day of workouts!).

Last Week’s Workouts

  • Monday- I ran 4.63 miles after I finished work and then spent about 30 minutes doing all sorts of different strength and core work using a band. So fun!

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  • Tuesday- Went to a boot camp class with my favorite instructor. If you think I am tough, you should go to one of her classes. Killer. I love it.

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  • Wednesday- I was pretty sore, so I just did 10 minutes on the elliptical and then taught UXF and did most of the workout with them.

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  • Thursday- Double time! I taught a stations workout in SHRED and then kickboxing.
  • Friday- Rest, besides a 30 minute walk around Somerville, ending at the liquor store to get some wine. Definitely not a coincidence, but it sure was great motivation!

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  • Saturday- Taught Kickboxing at the Y, which included lots of burpees 😉

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  • Sunday- Wellness by the Water Retreat, which included 30 minutes of Boot Camp, Tai Chi, Barre (OMG hardest Barre class I’ve been to) and Pilates and then also a CrossFit WOD (workout of the day) and yoga. Needless to say, it was a tiring, but FUN, day!

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This Week’s Workouts

  • Monday- Likely a rest day besides my normal walking commute.
  • Tuesday- Maybe another rest day since I have a photo shoot after work!
  • Wednesday- I was invited to go to a Women’s Health event at Exhale, so I am doing a Core Fusion Cardio class in the morning and then teaching UXF after work.
  • Thursday- Double time! SHRED & Kickboxing
  • Friday- Maybe a Deck of Cards workout? Running? Circuits?
  • Saturday- Teaching Kicboxing at the YMCA
  • Sunday- I’ll be in Maine for Memorial Day weekend so I will probably get my mom to do something with me 🙂

You tell me! What was your hardest workout this past week? Most fun? Anything you’re proud of?

C2 Pilates

Hi!! Over the weekend, I had the pleasure of attending a complimentary barre class at C2 Pilates. Most of the other bloggers who were at the event were avid barre “goers,” so I felt a little out of place since I have only been to a couple of different classes, but as soon as CC started her introduction I felt totally at ease.  There is just something about Pilates/barre/yoga instructors that is so calming to me.  As a Type A “go-go-go” type of person, it is so refreshing to be around people who are calm and peaceful and seemingly not in a crazy rush like I always feel like I am.

C2 Pilates has locations in South Boston, Dedham and Connecticut and they offer many different types of classes including STOTT Pilates, BARRE, Zenga and Core conditioning.  What I really loved about CC’s introduction was that she said they design their classes so that they can be modified to accommodate ANY level of fitness, and, with this in mind, unlike most Barre classes, at C2 90% of the class is performed in the standing position.  CC said they designed the workout this way because these days, the vast majority of us spend a good part of the day sitting in the car or at a desk in the office, so they want people to spend time with them where they are NOT sitting.  I love this!

The South Boston location was very nice, but apparently it’s going to get even nicer as they recently signed to have downstairs space in addition to their 2nd floor space. I definitely plan on going back to see how everything turns out!

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I’d really love to try using one of those cool Pilates Reformer machines (I think that’s what they are called?)… I always see them and feel like they’d be such a good workout! We spent our time at the barre where we went through the traditional format of the Barre workout that CC and Caroline have designed. I stuck to 2lb. weights as I was not sure what to expect (and my shoulder is still bothering me).  I still “felt the burn” with the 2lb. weights, but I think I could go up to 3lbs.

009It was so funny lifting such small weights, but I can see how they help to create long, lean muscle vs. the type of muscle I have gained from lifting heavier weights. And, I’ll be honest- I totally sweat more than I thought I would! Between the breathing and the continuous movement, my heart rate was up and I could literally feel every muscle in my body!  One thing that I really liked about C2’s style of Barre class, is that they don’t believe in making you hold poses for 2, 3 or 4 minutes.  CC explained that when you’re holding a squat or lunge or other type of isometric contraction in that “burn” position for longer than “pleasantly uncomfortable,” you start to engage different muscles or  ligaments to keep you there, which is taking away from working the muscles you’re aiming to work (quads, for example).  I totally agree with this! Think about the last time you had to hold a squat for a decently long time… you start fidgeting and trying to take the pressure away from your quads, which leads to it going into your back or core or hip flexors… all places where you aren’t trying to work. Interesting concept when you really think about it.

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Anyway, I felt so great after that class! It is definitely a type of workout that I would like to add to my weekly schedule, I just wish it wasn’t so expensive:(

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I wanted to take a minute to help promote a wonderful event that C2 is hosting on April 6th.

010PinkBarreI’ll let the cards and the website do the talking, but I will say that we actually did the PINKBARRE workout and I loved it. There are many areas where modifications can be made depending on what fitness level you are at, so there is no need to be intimidated or feel like you can’t keep up. I had no idea what I was doing but I just watched and listened and tried as best as I could to move my body in the way they were showing us to move them:) Unfortunately, April is a ridiculously busy month for me (birthday month!!) so I have plans all day and night on the 6th, but I would definitely be there if I could!

If you have any more questions, definitely shoot me an email @ burpeestobubbly@gmail.com and I’ll try my best to answer them, otherwise I’ll pass them onto CC and Carolyn and we will get back to you!

Questions for you: Do you take Barre classes? If so, where do you take them?