Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Setting the Barre

Most of us grew up watching our mom's exercise in the middle of the family room using Jane Fonda or Buns of Steel tapes. I am guilty of trying them myself after following the example -  sometimes it's just more convenient to workout in the privacy of our own homes. My mom has always been in amazing shape, even after four babies so I've always had the mentality to be like her. She really sets the "barre" high.

We are always on the search for the next big diet craze or fitness regimen that promises "lose 5 inches in 5 days!" or something so outlandish we wonder how it could be possible. The reality is most are too good to be true. But I have found one DVD program that I have been using for almost two months now and I have noticed a change in the way my clothes fit. It's not Insanity or T25, and it's definitely not Buns of Steel. Physique 57 is a barre-based workout that combines elements of ballet, interval training, cardio, and stretching. The longest session is 57 minutes (hence the name), but there are also additional 30-minute segments that target specific areas of the body. I bought my collection from Amazon for $50, which came with a mini stability ball and three DVDs:

1. Classic Full Body - 57 minutes
2. Arm & Ab Booster - 30 minutes
3. Express 30 Minute Full Body

The only other things you need are a stable chair to lean on (the actual barre can be a little pricey), a light set of weights (3-5 lbs) and a heavier set (5-7 lbs). Right now I am using 3 lbs and 5 lbs and trying to work up my strength. I try to alternate the DVD's 3-4 days a week, making sure at least one workout is the Classic 57. They encourage you to do it everyday, but sometimes an hour is too much. That's when I turn to those 30 minute blasters after a long day at work. And don't worry - they are still just as challenging!

The story behind Physique 57 is interesting too, because it stemmed from a barre studio and the Lotte Berk method (using ballet/stretching as a form of rehabilitation). It has gained a large following and the original studio is located in NYC (57th Street). 

If you want to see more about their story, check out this link:

I am going to make a personal commitment to this series for the rest of the summer (maybe beyond). I will also share my results and maybe some before and after pics if I am gutsy enough :)

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