This past week I hit a major milestone in my Pure Barre experience – I made it to 100 classes! As a PB client this means you get to sign the barre and can be a proud owner of a pair of 100 Club sticky socks. It’s amazing how a pair of socks can suddenly become one of the most prized items in your wardrobe! Plus you get the Pure Barre results that come from taking 100 classes.
Pure Barre is the first time in my life that I’ve ever consistently worked out over a long period of time. I’ve been taking 4-5 classes a week for the last 6 months and it’s become a regular part of my life now. I’ve never been able to say that about any other workout I’ve ever tried. If you’re on the fence about giving a barre studio I try I’d highly encourage you to give it a go and see if you like it!
Pure Barre Results
The big question that most people are curious about is whether or not I’ve seen changes in my body as a result of PB. The answer is YES! However, I will throw out a warning right now that regular PB classes by themselves are not the fastest road to weight loss. If that’s your ultimate goal I recommend switching between cardio and barre classes until you get to the weight you want and then switch to doing more barre classes. That being said, PB does have a cardio offering that was introduced this year but I’ll get to that in just a minute.
I have lost some weight since starting PB, about 5% of my body weight. I have some more that I want to lose but my problem with that is my eating habits. =/ The biggest thing that I saw really quickly, as in within the first month, was that the shape of my body changed. And now after six months my legs and arms are completely different than they were. My arms aren’t as flabby and I can feel muscle that wasn’t there before. My legs feel strong again and look leaner. I’ve also built up a lot of strength in my abs. I used to barely be able to get through ab work in the most basic position and now I can feel a strength in them and push myself harder in each class.
While I’m not as slim as I’d like to be yet I’m thrilled by the strength I feel in my body. Taking PB has changed how I physically feel from day to day and it’s been amazing. Plus I haven’t bulked up – it’s a long, lean type of muscle.
Platform (the cardio class)
At the start of 2016 Pure Barre introduced Platform which is their cardio offering. Prior to that they only had their classic Pure Barre classes. Platform involves having a platform that’s about a foot square and six inches off the ground and the entire class is a heart pounding experience. Although it’s designed to be cardio I feel like it incorporates a lot more strength training than most typical cardio workouts. I felt like I was going to die the first few times I took it and to this day I still have to stop and catch my breath multiple times throughout each class.
That being said, Platform is a fantastic way to burn calories. I’ve heard average estimates of 450-850 calories burned per 55 minute class! My studio here in Phoenix is doing a June challenge to try to encourage everyone to take at least 10 classes in June. I typically only take 1 or 2 Platform classes each week so stepping it up to 2 or 3 is a challenge. I’m excited about it as some of my fellow barre buddies have seem some significant changes to their body since upping their Platform classes!
One caution I will give is that there’s a bit of a learning curve to Platform, much the same way as there’s a learning curve to regular barre classes. I’d say give Platform a try at least 3-4 times before you decide if you like it or not. There are some people at my studio that just plain don’t like Platform and never take it.
Some Tips I’ve Learned From 100 Pure Barre Classes:
+ Setting your schedule is important
I map out all of my classes ahead of time and at the start of the week I always have a plan. I usually have classes booked for every day of the week with the intent to cancel two of them so that I get my five days in. The only reason I do this is because there are oftentimes wait lists for the evening classes at my studio. I have an idea of which days I’m going to cancel but I’ll hold out until closer to those days so that I’m prepared if my plans change.
Going into the week with a schedule rather than winging it is the only way I make 5 classes a week happen. When I don’t do this I end up not making it to classes which is no bueno! Also, I’ve found that having a routine (I always take the 5:45 class on Mon, Wed, Thurs, etc) helps a ton. Please note: be considerate and cancel as early as you can!
+ PB makes you feel like you can eat whatever – this is not a good thing
I come out of PB classes, particularly Platform, feeling like a rockstar. And I’m usually hungry because I take them after work but before eating dinner. There’s something about a good workout that makes a person feel justified to eat whatever they want. Make sure to avoid this! If I had done a better job with making healthy choices these last six months I’m sure I would have seen better weight loss results.
+ Challenges are really motivating to me
PB does a couple of different national challenges every year and then individual studios sometimes do their own (like mine doing the Platform challenge in June). Every March they do Pure Madness which is taking 20 classes in March and then in December they did a challenge to finish out the year strong and take 15 classes in December (which is hard to do around the holidays). I’ve learned that I love having a goal. I need to take 10 Platform classes and it’s first come first serve on the tank tops you win when you finish? Motivation level = high! Embrace those challenges!
+ I need my rest days
As a result of some of the challenges I have learned that I need my rest days. Sure, barre classes are low impact and safe to take everyday but I find that if I don’t rest at least one day a week, ideally two, then my effort during class starts to suffer and I don’t feel as good. Muscles need recovery time and PB classes are whole body workouts so be sure to listen to your body and give it rest when it needs it.
+ Getting corrected is a good thing
I like it when an instructor corrects my form because then I know I’m doing everything correctly. The more classes I’ve gotten under my belt the less corrections I’ve needed but I’m glad I embraced the corrections early on so that I was getting the best form from the start.
+ It’s good to make your own mini-goals for each class
Some days I’m tired and just want to get through class while other days I’m energized and ready to go. I’ve found that setting mini goals for myself can help me get the most out of class regardless of how I feel. Some days it’s just to get through the entire abs section without coming out of it. For a while it was holding my plank as long as possible until I could regularly hold it for the full 90 seconds during warm-up.
+ It’s OK to stick with the 2 lb weights – the 5 lb weights are not the ultimate goal
Most studios have 2 lb and 3 lb weights, some studios also have the 5 lb weights. I used to think the goal was to get to where you could use the heaviest weight possible for as many of the exercises as possible. After seeing how my arms have changed with just using the 2 lb weights I’m not overly concerned about working up to higher weights. I’ll continue to use a combo of the 2 and 3 lb weights and I’m happy with that.
If you’re on the fence about trying Pure Barre (or other barre classes) I highly recommend giving it a try! It’s changed my life by being the only workout routine I’ve ever stuck with. And I still get excited about going to class. I’ve been happy with my Pure Barre results and the impact the changes have had on my overall health.
Do I have any other PB addicts out there? If so leave me a comment and tell me which studio you take at – I love how I have friends all over the country enjoying the same classes!