My fitness journey started at the age of 3, in a ballet class. By the time I was 8 years old I had become one of the children attending The School of the Hartford Ballet's on a full scholarship and was one of the children their professional ballet company used to tour with. Fast forward to being over 30 and 3 kids later, that skinny ballerina was long gone. Traditional work outs didn't work for me, I wasted time and money at the gym. But I found one specific trainer who lead circuit training classes specifically designed for mothers. She kept me accountable and I actually enjoyed my workouts. A move had me part ways with her followed by some health challenges and a 5th abdominal surgery. I needed to find something I could do as part of my reintroduction to physical movement... And thats when I found Barre. It was as if my body applauded and scream "This is what we've been waiting for!"
Before becoming certified as a Barre Instructor I took classes at several different studios, including the "big chains" and a few "mom & pop" studios. Each of them had their strengths, some had outstanding technique that really resonated with me, others had communities that were like families... Because I work independently, I've been able to blend the best of all of those methods.
I fell in love with Barre because it is so personal, it never gets easy because there is always a deeper depth you can go to or you can hold the position longer or we can complicate the exercise. As you progress with me I will add time, encourage you to go deeper or add in a second step in the original movement. I will measure your successes and tailor your choreography so that we see change in your body where you want to see it. Adversely, in the beginning, I will give you modifications so you can get into each position and keep the time short enough so you can do them all. Barre is about YOU, and as your Barre Bestie I want you to be the best you possible.
The basis of Barre is to emulate a dancer's body - long, lean and incredibly strong muscles. I will have you stretch before we start class, after each exercise so that the muscle group we worked can recover appropriately and we end each session with a total body stretch. Each body part is worked with micro movements and muscle isolation. For example, a squat works your gluteus muscles and your hamstrings, in my classes we work these two muscles separately. And in fact we will work the top of the glute (gluteus medius) alone to help get a round shaped rear, work the bottom of the glute (gluteus maximus) alone to help lift the rear and even work the side of the glute (gluteus minimus) so that our rear has that nice dimple its supposed to have. The three parts of the thighs are worked separately as well and same with the upper body muscles. I call this Isolating & Dominating. When you target each tiny part of a muscle individually, there is no muscle compensation (or cheating).
The day after each class you should be sore, but because of the stretching you should never be limited in your everyday movements. It should be the kind of dry ache that reminds you of how hard you worked and how much you love what your body can do.
Emotions are a powerful force that we don't pay enough attention to, especially as it relates to our physical wellbeing. Physical health and mental health go hand in hand. Some people loose weight when they are sad and depressed, some people gain. Some people eat really well and exercise everyday when they are happy and then eat poorly and don't leave the couch when they aren't. Some people don't eat at all when they are down and run their bodies into the ground but then eat really poorly and neglect any exercise when they are happy. We should be working emotionally as well as physically.
A lot of my work with my own coach has centered on body image because like most women, that branches off into a million other areas of my life. When I feel the most beautiful it is because I feel like my body is both healthy and strong, my friendships are solid and intimate, I am deeply in love with my husband, my kids are behaving and I am spending serious quality time with them, I am volunteering my time to worthy causes, my business is going well etc. When something goes wrong, I tend to think I look like crap.
Perspective is emotional. Plenty of times I look in the mirror and see blubber. In that same moment my husband could look at me as see nothing but sex appeal, my best friend could be admiring how thin I look and my kids could just be gazing at their beautiful mother. So who is right? Who is more credible?
If you can go from feeling like you look amazing, to feeling like you look terrible within the same day, chances are it's not you. People hire attorneys to help them with legal issues because they don't have any authority in the area of law. So if you are lacking credibility in the area of the way your body looks, why are you listening to yourself?
You are going to be physically pushed in my studio. You might think your legs are going to give up on you, but I will be there telling you that I know you can do it. I've been watching and measuring and know you have the physical ability to make it finish. You will also be emotionally pushed in my studio. It is going to get uncomfortable when we confront certain things, you may not always want to answer the questions I ask, you may disagree with what I tell you. And that resistance will be because it is hard to change the inner dialogue you have with yourself. But remember, I'll be there supporting you and reminding you that you can do get through that too. I'll be there reminding you that you are safe in the space of my studio, that you have the emotional strength to handle what I say because I've paid attention and know what you are ready to take on.
When you work on your inner and outer beauty at the same time, the transformation is palpable. You'll be emotionally and physically lighter after work we do together. I want to sculpt your body image AND your body. Scratch that. I want to help YOU sculpt your body image and your body.
I have been working personally with Breck Costin for over 10 years, as my children started school he helped me transform into the coach I am. Under his direction I have been, and continue to be, trained to focus on body image and how it affects people physically.
I am independently certified through Barre Intensity which is an international barre training company. It focuses on form and aerobic high energy choreography so that your heart rate is up while your muscles are being pushed to their limits. Being a barre instructor is intense, taking a barre class should be as well.
I hold a certificate in Personal Training from The American Council on Exercise which is an international accreditation and greatly respected worldwide. This means that I know how to make appropriate modifications for injuries, can give you general information on health related to exercise and can give you some guidelines on nutrition. I am required to received continuing education credits in order to maintain my certification so that what I provide is up to date.
Holding a current CPR certification is a requirement to retain my ACE Certification. This training ensures a safe environment for my Barre Besties, should something occur during one of our sessions I would be able to provide care prior to emergency services arriving.