Adventures in Fitness: Hot Yoga, Spin, and What the Heck is BARRE?!

If you’re a family member or close friend, you’ve probably spotted me on Facebook “checking in” to various yoga and fitness studios in and around my ‘hood.  Why the sudden spurt of activity outside of my own gym, you ask?  Well, my friends, one of the many perks of being an educator for lululemon means connecting with the local fitness community by getting out there, meeting instructors, and experiencing all kinds of classes firsthand to be able to speak authentically about multiple forms of exercise.  It is pretty fabulous.

In the past few weeks, I’ve had the pleasure of visiting three yoga studios in the area (the first three of many more I have to check out!).  About a month ago I joined some coworkers at Oxygen Health & Wellness and didn’t realize until I got there that the class was going to be hot.  Hot?  I’m sure my face showed signs of panic, as I had never taken a hot yoga class before!  The room was heated to 85F or so, which I thought would be unbearable, but was actually awesome.  I loved it so much, in fact, that I signed up almost immediately to take an even hotter bikram yoga class at Hot Yoga Downtown.  In bikram, the room is heated to 105F with 40% humidity… needless to say, be prepared with towels and water, because you’ll need them throughout this class.  What an amazing feeling afterwards!  It’s definitely my new fave.

Hot Yoga Downtown in Palm Beach Gardens, FL… gettin’ steamy in there!!

Side plug: for those of you local to Palm Beach Gardens, this Saturday, September 29 will be the final Saturday to partake in the lululemon yoga crawl donation class benefitting Big Dog Ranch Rescue… a perfect time to try out Hot  Yoga Downtown.

I was even able to convince Tim to join me at a hot yoga class in Jupiter after work on a Friday night.  He had taken a bikram class before and loved it, so he knew what he was in for (though this wasn’t quite as hot as bikram)!  The class we attended at Breathe Salt & Yoga was a donation class benefitting Bella’s Angels (there is another donation class for Bella’s Angels at Breathe Salt & Yoga this Friday, September 28 at 5:30pm!).  Hot yoga that Friday night was the perfect calm, sweaty session we needed after a long week to gear up for a busy weekend.

Breathe Salt & Yoga in Jupiter, FL

Though yoga has been awesome, I also mustered up the courage to take a high intensity interval spin class at Krank It! in North Palm Beach.  I hadn’t taken a spin class in YEARS but remembered it to be awesome… which it absolutely was.  Although I was practically cursing the instructor under my breath during the 45 minute class, I felt exhilarated enough afterwards to want to hug her!!  We were both pretty sweaty and opted for a high-five instead!

Krank It! Spin Studio in North Palm Beach, FL

My most recent early morning fitness adventures have been at the barre.  No, not that bar!  Barre (which I should say, was first mentioned to me by my sister) is a technique involving using the stationary handrail used during ballet warmup exercises, and it’s becoming more and more popular for people coming from all levels of fitness.  Barre exercises include both slow and fast movements with specific purposes, such as to strengthen muscles in all areas of the body (think feet, quads, shoulders) and improve flexibility, with a serious emphasis on posture as well as placement of feet and arms.  Now, before you start thinking this is sissy stuff (like I did the first time I looked it up and saw a bunch of graceful ladies lined up at the mirror), let me stop you right there.  You will sweat.  Your arms and legs and buns will burrrrrnnn (especially if you’ve taken more than one barre class in addition to a spin class that week like I did!!).  You will probably not look pretty afterwards.  And you will be sore!  OH, but it hurts so good!

Our local spots for barre include Xtend Barre in West Palm Beach, and Pop Physique (also in West Palm), which will be opening another studio right around the corner from me in Jupiter next month!  Yay!

Xtend Barre, West Palm Beach, FL

Pop Physique in West Palm Beach, FL… coming soon to Jupiter!

It’s been so much fun trying some new things and getting out of my comfort zone at the gym.  What new forms of exercise have you been wanting to try?  On my list next… climbing, stand-up paddle boarding, boxing… who knows what else!  Can’t wait to share the next adventure with you!

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