Hello there! I’m back! Sort of…
I haven’t been cooking a ton lately, because big news…I BOUGHT A HOUSE! Crazy right?!? Adult things! So needless to say, we’ve been a little preoccupied. We also had about a month and a half of overlap between our closing and our apartment lease ending so it basically feels like we’ve been packing/moving/cleaning foreverrrrr. When your kitchen is divided in half between two homes, it makes homemade meals a bit stressful. There was a lot of eating out the past few weeks. At the very least, I’m thankful that we live off a road with lots of convenient options.
So instead of busting back onto the scene with a recipe, I have a local review for all you Greenvillians. There’s a new barre studio in town! I checked it out recently and I’m so happy to fill you in!
Barre Evolution is a Charleston-based studio that has made its way over to the Upstate and found a home in the McBee Station shopping center right off of Main St. in downtown Greenville. To be completely honest, while I try to stay current on downtown happenings, I hadn’t even noticed the studio going in or heard anything about it until I saw the LivingSocial for it and then drove by later that day. Great location & great looking studio!
As soon as I walked in, they were welcoming and attentive. I even got an impromptu tour of the studio and the owner/instructor really took an interest in my past barre experience and personal goals for my workout. They made a really great first impression. I have to say, sometimes fitness studios can feel a bit unwelcoming or judgmental to those of us who aren’t pencil thin or lulu-clad from head to toe, but this was not the case at all at Barre Evolution. From the moment I walked in, it felt like a very welcoming and friendly atmosphere. They didn’t even judge that my grippy socks were from the competition!
Since I’ve already done a review of a competing barre brand [that I’m fairly obsessed with] here on the blog, I’ll just get down to making a few comparisons. First of all, I’d like to note that I now know that it’s definitely not a brand of barre workout that I’m obsessed with, it’s just the workout in general. This is THE best way to tone and define your muscles quickly. While I have a long way to go as far as shedding some lbs before you’ll actually be able to see my toned muscles, at least I know that way down under there, they will be toned! [Goals, people. It’s all about goals.] You can feel the workout instantly, and talk about feeling the burn…holy hell. Trust me, y’all. You’ll feel the burn.
Ways that this differs from the other barre classes I’ve taken.
- Can we talk about their carpet? Is that crazy to list as my first thing? I noticed it INSTANTLY. Y’all, it’s the nicest, softest carpet ever. I was PUMPED to get down every time we did a floor exercise. That sounds a little crazy, but when your face is flat on the studio floor because your arms just collapsed while doing push-ups…you’ll be grateful for that plush carpeting. Trust me.
- Not as much tucking. Barre Evolution instructors focus more on the movement and less on your posture. While I like strict instruction on my posture during a move because, personally, it helps me focus on proper movements, it was definitely nice to actually stand up straight and feel like a ballerina at a barre again. I miss that.
- I got to point my toes! Again, this sounds crazy but when you’re taught to turn out and point your toes for 15 years, that is not a habit that goes away easily. I was always being “fixed” in other barre classes and told to flex my feet. It’s just not a natural position for me, so this was a welcome change.
- My instructor noticed my lack of flexibility (it’s been a month since I’ve worked out…like I said…I’ve been busy? Excuses, excuses.) and told me to focus on holding positions and getting more flexible before focusing on doing the movement. I appreciated that because if you can’t hold your leg where you need to to do a move correctly, you’re likely to hurt yourself. So it was nice to know she was looking out for each of our individual needs and not just pushing us all as to the max. We’re all different guys! Thank you for not expecting me to be at the same level as 12-pack next to me. Girlfriend was FIT. I’d like to be there.
- Equipment: You still use the grippy socks, you still use the ball, you still use a strap/tube, you still use a mat, you still use weights. And of course…you still use a barre. 😉
- Schedule: Barre Evolution’s class schedule is way more conducive to us working women. They have a 6:00pm or 6:45pm class almost every day, which is AWESOME. They also do “Express Barre” classes at lunch during the week, which I would be all over if I worked here in town. They’re 45 minute classes, instead of an hour, because let’s be real…if you have 1 hour for lunch, there’s no way you can get there, change, take your class, change again, and get back to work with any hope of actually getting a meal in there, too. So thank you, Barre Evolution, for being realistic for those of us who need it.
- Let’s talk $$$: The prices here are pretty much exactly the same as they are at the other barre studio in town. $23 for a single class, $105 for a 5-pack, $200 for a 10-pack, and so on and so forth. I still don’t fully understand how all the other ladies who look my age and don’t have ginormous rocks on their hands afford to go there on a regular basis, but hey. We all budget differently. For me, a barre class is a treat because it’s probably the workout I enjoy the most, but I still have a regular gym membership too. So I don’t do it often (this time I had a LivingSocial) but when I do, I really love it! Plus it’s a guilt-free treat, and those are always the best 🙂
All in all it was a great experience. It’s probably been about 6 months since my last barre class, so I definitely forgot how hard it is! But I also forgot how amazing you feel afterwards. It’s such a high. Try it once, and I promise you’ll be hooked.
So go check out Barre Evolution downtown! You won’t be disappointed. This is a fitness trend that has stuck around for good reason, and I don’t imagine it’s going to leave us any time soon. I’m happy to have another great barre option here in Greenville! See you at an evening class?? 🙂
Happy Tuesday, y’all!