Friday, July 28, 2017

My Summer Workout Routine + What I Like To Wear

It's finally Friday! I am so relieved of that fact since come 5:00 tonight (when our individual projects are due) I will be finished with summer grad school classes. Cue a happy dance! I bought a new book to read by the pool this weekend in order to celebrate and relax! One of the good things that has come with summer grad school is a routine. While I don't love having class from 9:00-4:00 and then heading home to do homework and cook myself dinner when I am used to more relaxed summer days the routine I have established this summer further confirmed to me that I am a creature of habit and thrive on routines. 

As silly as it sound, one of the hardest parts about leaving Greenville and heading home last summer was the fact that I was leaving my favorite workout studio and spending the whole summer in a town without a Barre 3. I spent my whole life playing soccer and then from middle school until high school added cross country to that mix so in some ways I am still surprised that I enjoy Barre 3 workouts as much as I do. Going from competitive sports to a workout where my background in yoga and ballet is incredibly limited took some time to get used to but I've pretty much loved it since the get-go. It has been so nice to be in Greenville this summer since I've been able to remain consistent with my workouts and now that the studio is only 6 or 7 minutes from my apartment (compared to the 3 or so from Furman) it has become that much easier to add in more classes! Since I get this question more often than one might think, I thought it would be fun to share my summer workout routine with y'all! 

As I mentioned, I attend Barre 3 classes at their Greenville, South Carolina studio. Barre3 is an hour long workout class that “mixes athleticism, grace, and the latest innovations designed to balance the body.” In a sense, it is a full body workout that uses low-impact movements to fatigue the muscles in order to tone the body making it strong, lean, and balanced. The class is split into sections focused on toning different areas of your body and each part lasts about 10 minutes. The class begins with a warm up to get the body moving and warm the muscles. Next comes leg work typically at the barre, then combo work in the center of the studio, followed by seat work, core work, and finally a stretch. While these areas are focused on during their specific time periods of class, Barre3 does a great job at incorporating exercises that combine these muscle groups allowing them to work for an extended period of time. During each portion of the class you’ll hold a specific exercise, move it small, and then move it big to flush out the muscles after exhausting them. There are a few props that the studio provides that are used during the class such as a ball, resistance band, and weights. They even provide mats so you really don’t have to worry about bringing anything aside from yourself and some water!

I’ve done other barre style workouts and wasn’t as big of a fan of the environment or class as I have been with Barre3. The Greenville studio is so bright with windows and mirrors surrounding the room. The owners, staff, and instructors are always so sweet and it is the perfect escape from class or my never ending to-do list. I really became hooked on Barre3 as an escape from school and KD presidency that allowed me to do something for myself without my phone buzzing or being entirely unproductive.  Another added bonus is that I am able to exercise a number of parts of my body within an hour long class that I wouldn’t necessarily know how to tone on my own at the gym. While it would be more convenient to just go to the gym at my apartment I’ve discovered that I am a lot more consistent with my workouts when I go to Barre3 since I schedule them in advance and genuinely enjoy them. As for the price, Barre3 has membership packages that you can purchase or you can buy a certain number of classes. I always opt for the membership package because it tends to be a better deal depending on the number of classes I can attend in a month. The Greenville studio has a $99 unlimited special for students and teachers and that is what I always opt for. If I am able to go 5  times a week for each week during a month that makes each class equate to about $5 which is pretty affordable. It’s also really nice that as a member you get access to online workouts as well. This makes it so that when I know I don’t have the time to devote to go and workout at the studio I don’t have to completely skip my workout and can do it on our balcony or in the kitchen instead!

My routine this summer has included about 5 Barre 3 workouts each week. Some weeks I may hit 6 or 7 but for the most part 5 times a week is most typical for me. The one new thing I've started to add to my routine this summer is taking at least one 6 am class each week. Before you roll your eyes and skip over this part hear me out! Yes, waking up and forcing myself to workout that early can be tricky but I get up at 5:15 usually so it's not that I am having to wake up early but instead I am just postponing my earliest cup of coffee until after I am back. I always feel so good once the class is over knowing that I have the whole afternoon to myself to get things done and have already accomplished something significant in the day before 7:00! I am really going to miss the 6 am class once teaching starts up so have been going to the 6 am class more frequently this past week to make up for that. I don't think it's something I could do everyday but if you're looking for a way to change around your workouts give that a try (and if you're worried about that early alarm try to lay out your clothes in advance to make it easier). 

Another way I keep my routine consistent is by scheduling all of my classes in advance. Usually on Sundays I sit down with my Day Designer and the Mind and body scheduling app that Barre 3 uses and I sign up and write down all of my workouts for the week. I figure out which days I want to go early, which instructors I am going to take class with, and what day I might be busiest and need to take off. By scheduling the workouts in the app I am held more accountable even on days when the last thing I want to do is workout. On the days when I don't workout I like to go on walks and my roommate Ellison and I have an ab routine that we were really good about in June. I'm always on the lookout for fun ways to be active without really noticing that you are so if you have any suggestions definitely share them with me!

This is my favorite pullover that I own. It is crazy soft and keeps that feeling after being washed. The newer version is included in the NSale and I can't recommend you snatching this up while it's on sale enough! I throw it on over oversized t-shirts and barre clothes alike. Mine is a medium but I definitely could have worn a small but since the silhouette is made to be oversized fluctuating between sizes of this pullover isn't a huge deal one way or the other. So, if it's sold out in your size definitely try it in a size close to yours and I'd be surprised if you weren't happy by the fit. 

Most of the pieces are included in Nordstrom's Anniversary Sale so after you finish up your workout indulge yourself in some cute new finds! 

leggings // striped shirt (tank form here) // black tank // grey pullover // shoes (similar) // water bottle // watch // bracelets ( 1 & 2 ) // rose gold bracelet

Since the Nordstrom Sale is still going strong I thought it could be fun to share some cute workout wear finds with y'all. I always wear a pair of leggings and a tank top to barre but often throw a shirt or pullover over my tank on the way! My BKR water bottle has been my favorite this summer since it holds SO much and there are two packs included in the Anniversary Sale! You could easily keep one for yourself and share the other with a friend. Here are my initials picks of items offered in the sale but keep scrolling to see all my favorites from the in-stock selections (although a lot of the items below are still in stock!).

In-Stock Athletic Wear Guide

I'd love to hear your workout routine and if you have any workout wear favorites! 

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