Fitness, Workouts

Barre Workouts

April 15, 2016

Around December 27, 2008, on a trip in Mexico, my Mind had a heart-to-heart talk with my Body:

Mind:  Hey body, we are 31 years old  and things are changing.  We need a new health and wellness plan.

Body: Why?  A plan for what? We’re good.  You think to much.  We just fell in love.  We live in this amazing, diverse city.  We’re healthy.  In fact, just think how much healthier we are today than we were in our 20s.  We worked 12 hours a day and then partied all night with the beautiful people.  Ahhh…the gold ol’ days.

Mind:  First, our 20s were indeed lots of fun but we would not have survived much longer at that pace so just be glad we lived to tell the tales.  Second, I agree with all you said about being in a good mental place, but since turning 30 , I see and feel the changes to our skin, our metabolism and our overall health.  If we are really honest, we don’t feel comfortable right now, and that’s not good.  We need to look into something different and make health and wellness a priority.

Body:  Aw, you’re too hard on us.  We work out.  We try to eat healthy.  I mean, we fall of the wagon from time to time, and we have put on a few pounds during this whole falling in love phase, which was fun by the way, but overall we are doing pretty good.

Mind: ¬†That’s the point.¬† I think we could be doing sooo much better.¬† And yes, I would like us to lose a few pounds.¬† But my end goal is not to get skinny, the goal is for us to feel strong. ¬†Plus, you and I need to feel more connected and moving forward in the same direction. ¬†You are over here. ¬†I am over there.¬† We must¬†create a better mind and body relationship so that our daily habits align with our long term goals.¬† For example, if we want to remain active into our golden years or hell, even our 40s for that matter, we have to¬†develop different habits today. ¬†And yes, we also need to drop a few pounds and build more muscle.¬† Today, we are 31 and have gained 5 pounds since turning 30.¬† If we gain 5 pounds every year for the next nine¬†years, that‚Äôs 50 pounds overweight when we turn 40¬†and I just have to imagine that will be hard for both of us to deal with.

Body:  Ok, fine.  Good points.  50 pounds overweight in 10 years got me extra shook.  What’s the plan?

Mind:  On the beach earlier today, I read about this fairly new workout in New York City called Physique 57 that Kelly Ripa used to lose the baby weight and get in shape.

Body:  Who the heck is Kelly Ripa?

Mind:  You know Kelly.  The perky blond chick on the morning show, Regis & Kelly.  She is in incredible shape.  Her core looks rock solid.

Body: Oh yeah, I know who you are talking about.  She’s a hottie!  Tell me more about this Physique 57.

Mind:¬† Well the website describes it as a low impact, full body workout incorporating a variety of weight bearing¬†exercises. ¬†They claim to attack every inch of the body in just 57 minutes. ¬†And it says that we can see some results¬†fairly quickly. ¬†I did a little research already and found out¬†it‚Äôs inspired by the infamous¬†Lotte Berk Method¬†known for blending “strength-training, dance, orthopedic back exercises and yoga” into an “intense workout.” ¬†Physique 57 builds on the original method Berk created and also¬†incorporates the techniques used by¬†ballet dancers¬†to create¬†long, lean lines.¬† That is my long term goal for us, long and lean muscles.

Body: Wait a second, did you just say something about ballet?  Girl, we are going to look crazy.  You know we don’t have any rhythm and only have two basic dance moves on a very good day.  This is not going to work!

Mind:  I don’t think it’s an actual ballet class.  There are ballet barres in the pictures but I think traditional ballet moves only inspire the workout.  It’s more of a hybrid of ballet, pilates, yoga and old-fashioned aerobics.  It will be fun.  We’re doing it!

Body: Yeah, okay.  Prepare for a serious attitude if they ask us to learn a dance routine.


On January 7, 2009, we took our first Physique 57 class with Katie¬†in midtown New York.¬† Within the first five minutes of class, my¬†muscles literally shook.¬† It was one of the hardest 57 minutes I¬†had ever endured. ¬†I kept saying the entire time, “Just don’t quit. ¬†Stay in there.” ¬†Afterwards, I remember describing the class to¬†coworkers and friends and saying this workout will¬†work. ¬†I immediately loved the way it systematically worked each muscle group from upper body down to the arches in my feet. ¬†If I could push myself and stick with this, I had a feeling that, over time, Physique 57¬†would¬†change both the way I felt about my body and fine tune the way my body performs.


On April 20, 2016, over 7 years later, we took our 974th class.  Looking at reaching my 1000th class milestone later this summer, my Mind checked in with my Body to evaluate the journey over the past seven years and how we have changed:

Mind: Can you believe we have taken almost 1000 Physique class over the past seven years?  Wow!!!  Time flies.  I still love it as much as I did the first time back in January 2009.

Body:  Hell yeah, I can believe it!  My muscles still shake during the thigh section.  Almost every class I want to literally cuss your happy, chirpy, curly haired self completely out because my quadriceps and hamstrings feel like they might explode if we do one more pulse.  I reluctantly took that first class but I am glad we stuck with it.  I have literally transformed into a different body.

Mind:  Yeah, I have noticed the changes. What do you think are the biggest differences?

Body:¬† We have always been bottom heavy, a true pear shape¬†as those fashion magazines like to say.¬† We¬†will never be skinny. ¬†(Why is everyone obsessed with skinny by the way? We¬†should be focussed on strength.) But now we comfortably wear shorts and hemlines above the knee! ¬†We didn‚Äôt wear shorts when we were 18 so I never thought we would wear them comfortably at 39.¬† And when we first started Physique 57, I didn‚Äôt think that little 10-minute weight section at the beginning of each class could actually tone our upper body.¬† But I was wrong.¬† We now have legitimate biceps and back muscles.¬† ¬†The high rep, low weight method combined with push-ups and plank positions really do work.¬† And our core.¬† Forget about it.¬† Drop the mike.¬† Strong. ¬†ūüĎäūüŹĹ¬†¬†And after almost 1000 classes, I can literally say, ‚ÄúI earned those abs.‚ÄĚ

Mind:  The abs, muscles and weight loss are all great for sure, but what I love about the practice is that my body is strong.  We just turned 39 and we could try just about anything because we pull from this solid base of strength.

Body:  Is that why you and Rachel dragged us to that Aerial Yoga class in New York?  I’m all in for trying new things but can we just agree that may not be for us?

Mind: Okay, fine.¬† Yes, I agree that¬†aerial yoga may require more coordination than we actually have.¬† I still thought it was pretty cool that we are strong enough to dive in and try something new and out-the-box.¬† In fact, this year we have tried so many new exercise activities: Bikram Yoga, TRX training at Exhale Spa¬†and #sweatyin30.¬† We took risks. ¬†Although we turned “39 One Last Time”¬†this year, I feel as¬†if we are in the best shape of our¬†life. The best version of us. And a large part of that has to do with the muscle conditioning gained through Physique 57.

Body:¬† Yes, I agree.¬† The other big difference is that I do feel more connected. ¬†You’re always on the go, wanting to work out and stay¬†active. ¬†Now I feel fit enough to¬†keep up.

Mind:  Great, looking forward to the next 1000!

Body: Let’s not get ahead of ourselves.


ūüí•ūüí•ūüí•Physique 57 is a CERTIFIED member of Jacqslist!!!ūüí•ūüí•ūüí•

Thanks for stopping by Jackie Unfiltered!




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