Client of the Month: Dana H.

Meet Dana H.!  Dana, a regular client of our Edina studio, is truly an inspiration when it comes to dedication, commitment, and her positive attitude she brings to the studio.  You may see her regularly at those early 6am classes with a smile on her face ready to get her shakes on!

How long have you been coming to the barre and what inspired you to try it?
Jenna taught my first barre class 2 1/2 years ago. I was more than a little intimidated at first, everyone seemed so young and fit and I thought it was really hard. But I saw Jenna and other instructors doing the classes too and still challenging themselves and it seemed to work for lots of different fitness levels so I just kept coming back.

Tell us about yourself! Work? Hobbies?
I am a psychiatrist and I am trained as a geriatrician and I still work 3 days per week. I plan to retire completely in the next 1-2 years.

What are your favorite barre benefits, mental and/or physical? Challenges?
Barre has been a great way to counter aging and to stay ready for biking, hiking, and skiing. I feel much stronger and I have more endurance.

I hope all the younger women who do this work out realize how important it is to keep it up even after they don’t care so much about how they look in a bathing suit anymore. It’s just so critical to have that core and upper body strength as well as the legs and hips as you go into your post-menopausal years. Data really supports that exercise is even more important the older you get.  I do feel my age and limitations, some days more than others, but I remind myself how much better I feel now than I did 2 1/2 years ago.  I like to see more older women showing up and I want to encourage them to just keep coming back. But I really like the mix of ages, fitness levels, post-partum, post-menopause, dancers, athletes, and not so athletic. I appreciate that the instructors can be challenging but not judgmental and the workout can still be just as hard as it was when I started.

I forgot to mention, too, how supportive my husband has been. He’s seen me start work out programs over the years and not stay with them and he’s been really impressed with how I have stayed with this one – and he likes the results, too. He thinks I look great but he sees also how I can keep up with him better when we bike or ski and how I have more energy.

How do you balance work, family, hobbies, etc. and still have time for barre?
I try to be disciplined and get to 3-4 classes per week which seems to be the magic number for me. I’m in 2 book clubs, travel, have a lake home in Wisconsin that I want to get to on the weekends.  Both of my sons are in their mid-20’s and they’re pretty independent now.  In the past it was all about getting to their games and tournaments, so I try to channel that into time for me. I think kids should see their parents setting that example so at least I’m doing it now. They think it’s great and my son with his first job gets to the gym regularly which makes me happy.

Do you have a favorite class format or instructor?
I don’t have a favorite instructor and I enjoy that they each have a different style and each class is different, you know what’s coming in general but you don’t get bored. I typically do the regular barre classes because I like the stretching and cool down built in.

What does “barre strong” mean to you?
Barre strong means I can try new things, like a bike trip, or a ski race, or a hiking trip, and look forward to it now because my body and mind are ready. It’s great to be able to wear sleeveless dresses, too!

Clients of the Month: Jane R. & Susan W.

Meet Susan W. and Jane R.!  Regular clients of our Wayzata studio, these strong women balance it all – work, family, friends, and hobbies – yet have learned the true value and benefits of setting aside time for yourself.  Two and a half years ago, Susan introduced Jane to the barre and they have been coming three days a week ever since.  Oh, and did we mention they are sisters?!

Read on to learn more about these two “barre stars” and their inspiring journey!

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Tell us about yourself! Work? Hobbies?

Jane:  I’m married with two children – a daughter, 25 and a son, 22.  I work in downtown  Minneapolis as an executive assistant and enjoy spending time with family and staying active.

I’ve always been active and interested in fitness, starting at an early age with dance classes.  Throughout my life, I’ve joined/participated in many fitness options – health clubs, yoga classes, dance classes and even tried to get into a running routine, but none of those really stuck.  Barre changed that…

Susan: I’m a married with 3 boys ages 25, 23 and 19.  I have my own market research firm and never really had much time for exercise classes.  I always did my own which never really worked out very well.  We have a home gym but my kids used it much more than I ever did.

In my early 50’s I started having issues with my lower back.  I was going to a chiropractor twice a month and things weren’t getting any better.  Even with the prescribed exercises my back was a little better but still had problems.

 

How long have you been coming to the barre and what inspired you to try it?

Jane: Sisters know each other and after hearing Susan’s testimonials, I joined her for class and quickly understood why she was so excited to find the program.  It’s been 2+ years and I’m still as motivated as I was after the first class.

Susan: I started coming to the barre in February 2013 with a  friend of mine.  I wanted to strengthen my core in hopes of making my back feel better.

 

How often have you been coming to class together?  Does having a “barre buddy” make you more accountable?

Jane: Susan and I attend 3 days a week.  I know that I am motivated by a class type of environment and with the added benefit of attending with my sister, it keeps it fun.  We look forward to seeing each other and believe we are both inspired/motivated by each other.

Susan: Jane and I attend 3 classes per week.  The buddy system works so well for us.  There are many times you just don’t feel like going but you know the other person will be there so you go.  It has really helped me stay on track.

 

What are your favorite barre benefits, mental and/or physical?  Challenges? 

Jane: I believe the benefits all play together – mental and physical.  I’m proud of myself for making barre class a priority and not sitting back, making excuses (no time, too tired) and letting nature take its course.  There’s also the important side benefit that I’m setting a good example for my family – that fitness is important at all ages.

Susan: The best part of the barre is the physical benefit which is why I started taking the classes.  I didn’t realize how you have the mental benefits as well.  I can tell when I come back from vacation and feel sluggish.  It only takes one class to start feeling more on top my game.

 

How has the barre impacted your life?

Jane: I love that I can do all the things that make me feel good whether it’s hiking or still being able to fit into an old pair of favorite jeans. Class clears my mind and give me that one hour to do something just for me.

Susan: My quality of life is so much better.  I haven’t been back to a chiropractor for 2 ½ years and have regained strength which I thought was gone.

 

How do you balance work, family, hobbies, etc. and still have time for barre? 

Jane: Like most, the majority of the day is completing tasks and doing things for others.  Setting aside three workouts a week is important for me.

Susan: Actually, it works out pretty well.  Jane and I attend the same classes each week so we already have the time allocated for class.  I feel fortunate to only need 3 hours each week to have the type of body and strength I’ve found at the barre.

 

What does “barre strong” mean to you?

Jane: Investing in yourself – mentally and physically

Susan: Barre strong means being the best version of yourself you can be.  It is never too late to start working on making your body strong.  Also, I learned at the barre that pushing yourself drives change.  I always thought shaking was a sign that my body couldn’t handle it and I needed to stop.  I’m so glad I learned that pushing myself was just what I needed.

 

Client of the Month: Erica Z.

 

Meet Erica Z.!  A regular client of our Edina studio and mom to three little girls (almost 6, 4 and 1.5 years!), is our December client of the month!  When not lining up at the barre, Erica loves staying active through running, hiking, snowshoeing and downhill skiing.  She’s also an avid baker & cook and likes to volunteer as much as possible at her daughter’s school.  Read on to learn more about this “barre star” and her inspiring barre journey!

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How long have you been coming to barre and what inspired you to take your first class?

I’ve been coming to the barre for a little over a year.  We’ve been getting our family pictures taken with bellasaluti for many years and I saw the photos that they took for the barre pop up on their facebook page and thought it might be a fun thing to try.  It was quite some time between seeing those photos and taking my first class, but they inspired me to see what the barre was all about.  

 

What is your biggest challenge in class, physically and/or mentally?

Thigh dancing – ha!  It’s so hard!  I also think the abs portion is hard because it’s at the end of class when you’re fatigued and it’s hard to keep good form.  

 

You’re an evening class regular.  How do you keep yourself motivated at the end of the day to come to class?

I love the evening classes.  They’re usually a little quieter  and I love having all the stress and the craziness of the day to fuel my workout.  I also like that my daughters are home to see me leave to go workout.  I love giving them the example that it’s important to take time to move your body.  

 

What physical and/or mental changes have you noticed since making barre a part of your routine?

I’m 35 and honestly in the best shape of my life.  It’s inspired me to be more active and adventurous.  This summer I tried stand-up paddle boarding, canoeing, kayaking, and got on a bike for probably the first time in 20 years.  I also started running a few miles once a week and ran my first 5K!  These are all things I wouldn’t have done if the barre hadn’t whipped me into shape!  

 

How has the barre impacted your life?

It’s made me healthier, stronger, happier, more active, and I’d say a little more patient.  Oh, and I can do a lot more push-ups 😉  

 

Favorite section of class?  Favorite position?

Push-ups – I love the challenge of trying to get through all of them on my toes while keeping good form.  I also love the side seat series.  Hair pin and clam shell are my favorite positions.  

 

What does “barre strong” mean to you?

To me, “barre strong” is the point in class where your mind is begging you to stop.   Maybe, your legs are on fire or your shoulders feel like they just can’t pulse those weights one more time.  Whatever it may be, you find a way to shut off that voice telling you to stop.  That little moment when you push through, that’s barre strong.  

Client of the Month: Catherine R.

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How long have you been coming to the barre?
I have been coming to the barre since January of last year 🙂
You come to the 6am classes a lot. How do you deal with waking up so early? 🙂
I usually come to the 6am classes in the warmer months, not so much in the winter unless it is the only time I can fit it in! But in regards to waking up so early, I set my alarm early enough to be able to hit the “snooze” button once or twice. Also, COFFEE. Coffee always comes first that early! Kristen and Kalli definitely make it worth the effort!
What have been your favorite benefits of barre so far?
Oh gosh, there have been so many benefits of taking classes at the barre! But my favorite is definitely the feeling I have once class has finished. It always feels like a great accomplishment, having worked every single muscle in my body in one hour. I feel stronger, healthier, and definitely happier! Even on days that I may lack motivation, coming to class always seems to be a positive part of my day. I also love that with each class, I am able to sink a little lower or hang on a little bit longer before taking a break as my muscles grow stronger. I just love everything about it!
What challenges are you working on in classes right now?
Well, my current challenge is training to become an instructor! Making the transition from student to instructor this spring will have its own set of challenges, but I am so ready to take them on! I cannot wait to share my love and passion for the barre with everyone else!

 

Client of the Month: Jennifer O.

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How long have you been coming to the barre? 
I started in September 2012.  I still remember my first class with Stacy – I loved it from day one!
How did you first find us? 
I was looking for something different in my work out routine and I had heard about barre classes.  I was a dancer and loved ballet when I was younger so the barre work out sounded like something I might enjoy.  I started searching and found The Barre in Wayzata.  I tried a class and a month unlimited.  I quickly fell in love with the studio, classes, other clients and staff.  There is always such a warm and inviting atmosphere.
What changes in your mind and body have you noticed most? 
I feel more lean and toned.  I have more flexibility.  I love that it never gets easier.  I feel mentally and physically challenged with each class and always leave feeling great.
How do you fit barre into your busy schedule? 
I work full time and have 3 kids so I try to fit classes in early morning or evening and on the weekends.  All of the instructors are amazing and I know any time I come I’m going to have a great work out.
What is your favorite class time? 
I enjoy all times but have really started to love the 6am classes in Edina with Kristen and Kalli.  They are both very motivating and it feels great to be done by 7am.  It gives me energy for the rest of my day!   Both studios are great.  I really love being at the Wayzata studio and looking out at the beatiful lake – helps take my mind off of the pain!
Favorite barre move? 
I don’t think that I have one favorite.  I love/hate the thigh series.  It is so hard but you feel so good when it’s done.  I think the seat series are my favorite part of class.  You really have to focus and concentrate.  I love the results!

Client of the Month: Kelly B.

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How long have you been coming to the barre?
I signed up for a month unlimited the end of October and have been coming ever since!
How did you first hear about us?
I live really close to 50th and France and so whenever I am in the area I would always see the studio and want to check it out.
Do you have a favorite instructor? Why?
I have loved all of the instructors!!!  I have taken a lot of classes from Jenny and Kim (just due to scheduling) and they are amazing!  Recently, I got to take a class from Kalli and then one from Paula!  Let me tell you – they kicked my butt and I loved it!  I will definitely be trying to take more classes from them.  They are all so great at helping with form through out class, encouraging you when you just want to quit and helping you push through the shakes!
What has been your biggest challenge coming to class?
Just forcing myself to go! It’s so hard in the winter when it’s dark (at night) and cold to want to get out of your warm and cozy house and go but it’s ALWAYS worth it.  I have yet to take a class where I thought ‘well that was a waste of my time.’ (ha!)
How have you overcome that? Or how are you working on that?  
I find that the month of unlimited classes really forced me to go because I wanted to get my money’s worth – so I am thinking of signing up for a month (or 3) unlimited!  Also, just looking at my week and getting the classes in my calendar that I am going to go to so it’s a priority.  It also helps to have a friend!  I got both my mom and sister hooked on Barre so now I have them to help hold me accountable to go!
Have you been to other studios? How is the barre different?
I did do Pure Barre but it was a while ago.  Biggest difference – there is no Monkey Barre!  That was a deal breaker for me.  I can’t commit to a work out if I can’t bring my 2 and a half year old!  Quinn LOVES going to Barre and playing with “Alex.”  She thinks Alex is one of her best friends.  It’s so comforting knowing she is having FUN!
What is your biggest goal in coming to the barre?
Do shape and tone my body and to get STRONGER!

Client of the Month — Liz B.

It was such a pleasure to sit down with Liz and learn more about her time at the barre! She is such a great example of how strong you can be if you really push yourself!

How long have you been coming to the barre?

My first class at the barre was in November of 2011.  My good friend (and former  barre instructor) Katy Tanghe was a huge fan and pulled me in.  I didn’t really start coming regularly until Spring of 2013.

Were you an athletic person before coming to the barre?

I’ve always done something- growing up it was soccer, tennis and skiing.   About a year and a half ago I started running regularly and have really enjoyed that as a compliment to classes at the barre.

How often do you come to barre classes per week?

3-4 times per week is really the magic number for me-  I’ve dropped down to fewer classes in my last month of pregnancy, but I really felt my best when I made it to class at least 3 times per week.  There’s something about the momentum of attending class regularly that helps me stick with it.

What have been the benefits of coming to barre while pregnant?

I feel stronger and more flexible during this pregnancy than I did while pregnant with my two other children (despite being a bit- ahem- older).

What have been your challenges?

Push ups, thighs, and round back have always been the toughest sections while pregnant. They feel exponentially harder! That said, while not pregnant I have a love/hate relationship with Water Skiing–I know it’s good for me, but I struggle through every moment and hang on for those glorious words “here comes your final 10!”

What is your favorite class time to come to?

I’m a huge fan of Kristen and Kalli’s 6am weekday classes in Edina! It feels so good to have completed class by 7am and there is a fun group of ladies who show up week after week!

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