As a busy, working mom to a toddler, it can feel nearly impossible to make fitness a part of my regular routine. I travel frequently for work, so the thought of going to the gym or a barre class when I’m already feeling guilty about being away from my son can feel like too much to bear. But here’s what I’m learning–I’m way less stressed out when I workout. I have a lot more patience. I feel better about myself. Exercising regularly is helping me to truly believe what they say, “You’re a better mom when you take care of yourself first.”
The importance of self-care is one of the reasons I’m excited to partner with mom-owned Xtend Barre Beaverton for this sponsored post. But as always, all opinions are my own.
I had the opportunity last month to attend classes at Xtend Barre, located at the beautiful Progress Ridge center in Beaverton. Xtend Barre brings in elements of dance, ballet and Pilates to create a workout that strengthens, lengthens and chisels your body. Each class features an elegant yet energetic combination of movements that enhance flexibility, improve balance, and challenge the core. There is definitely an element of cardio, so you’ll get your heart rate up and your sweat on!
Portland native Sara Peelle is the owner of Xtend Barre Beaverton and has a Doctorate in Physical Therapy. She discovered Xtend Barre five years ago while living in San Diego.
“I love how it elongates your muscles and makes you feel like a dancer without having to be one! I am a mother of three kids and needed to get a good workout in a short amount of time. Xtend Barre is the most efficient workout out there!”
Sara is also a marathon runner, and found Xtend Barre to be a great complement to her running.
My Xtend Barre Experience
Now to my experience… I’m not going to lie. I was a bit intimidated when I first signed up. The girls in the pictures on their website were all tall, thin dancer looking women. Even before I had my son, my body didn’t look like that. But this was a great opportunity to give it a try, so I put aside my insecurities and I signed up for my first class.
When I got to the studio for the first time, I was super impressed with how adorable the studio was and how warm and kind both the gal at the front desk was as well as the instructor. I told them this was my first time and they made sure I had all of my equipment set up and organized. My insecurities quickly began to fade, as I saw women of all shapes, sizes and ages in the class.
Now to the class itself. I’m not even going to lie. It was hard. Like, really hard. But here is what was so awesome: there were modifications for every exercise we did. You can make the movement easier or harder depending on where you’re at in your fitness journey. There were women at every level in the class, so I didn’t feel bad at all about having to modify. All of the classes are open to all fitness levels and are completely appropriate for pre-natal and post-natal women, post-injury rehab clients as well as people new (or returning) to exercise. In my experience, the instructors did a great job of modifying the movements to meet my fitness goals and accommodate my limitations.
They also offer yoga, TRX, Xtend Barre stick classes, Circuit 7 Interval classes, and other special workshops, so there is no chance of getting bored! Each instructor has a unique background and offers a different experience.
Tips for the Barre
If you’re just starting up your workout routine, here are some tips that really helped me:
- Don’t let the intense agenda of motherhood deter you from working out altogether. Once or twice a week is better than nothing at all!
- Put it into your schedule (and keep it there!)! Xtend Barre has a great online tool for managing your workouts. And they have classes early in the morning, as well as later in the evening to accommodate lots of different schedules.
- If you’re concerned about a big commitment, you can buy classes individually, or as a pack. There is also a monthly unlimited class offer that is great if you can get there more than a couple times a week.
- Grab a friend! Accountability works, and it’s more fun!
- Perhaps most importantly: Make yourself a priority. We’re our kid’s best role models, and they learn from us how important it is to exercise and take care of ourselves.
I’m happy to report that, while I didn’t get to Xtend Barre quite as often as I wanted to last month due to my travel schedule, I still lost some weight! And most importantly, I feel stronger, both mentally as well as physically. Give it a try and belly up to the barre! You won’t be disappointed.
Need an extra incentive to try it out? Xtend Barre Beaverton is offering a special giveaway to a lucky reader. Enter below to win a One Month Unlimited Membership. And even if you don’t win, Xtend Barre is the most competitively priced barre workout in the area. You can try your first class for $15. They also offer gift cards in case you want to add Xtend Barre to your holiday wish list. See you there!Xtend Barre Beaverton