For our next #RealClients #RealResults post we are beyond thrilled to be hearing from this particular client. We preach about the journey of Barre…the ups and downs, the struggles that everyone faces, the misconception that no progress is being made when in fact it is. But sometimes its hard to listen and truly hear what is being said. The journey that each of you faces is difficult, long, and at times seemingly bleak. What makes the difference and keeps people going in that moment is all about perspective. Our next contributor shares her approach to the all important perspective and how it has shaped and changed throughout her Barre journey. She has been with us for some time now and we are very proud to have her in our Barre Crew. She works hard, she is determined, and she is tenacious in overcoming obstacles. In her own words, here is Suzy Jackson:
As a plus-sized person, when it comes to exercise classes or gyms, I often felt like the elephant in the room.
And I struggled, for years, with every fad exercise regime and celeb DVD transformation. Because I hated it. Because I thought I sucked at it. And because my body was so far removed from theirs, I simply couldn’t move the same way as they did. I felt a failure; disheartened, and pretty hopeless.
Five years ago, I took a chance on the Barre, after recommendation from a really enthusiastic Barre regular. With a background in dancing, I thought the movements might just make a little more sense to me. And it was after a number of false starts and many deep breaths that I poured my butt into a pair of leggings and shimmied on in.
The first class was a rollercoaster. I didn’t have a clue what I was doing; I vaguely pointed my limbs in the same direction as the instructor, and hoped for the best. Around the end of plies, I hoped for a fire alarm or a power cut to end the experience. By arabesque I was plum-purple in the face and wobbling from my eyeballs down.
And by the end of stretching, I was shellshocked, because I actually had some flexibility. Something really weird happened… I wanted to do it again.
And I did.
The Barre has become far more to me than an exercise class. It’s a community, and you can be as involved in that as you like. For me, the support I get from my fellow Barre enthusiasts, and from everyone involved in running the studio, is absolutely priceless. It’s what keeps my head in the game.
So here’s the bad news. It doesn’t really get any easier. You get stronger, and more capable, and that enables you to make the moves more technical. I guarantee you will want to do this stuff really well – there’s a huge sense of satisfaction there, and not just from avoiding being adjusted by the hands-on instructors!
But it’s easy to forget that… the aim of Barre is not to make a class easy. The aim is to finish your sets, perfect your form, and keep pushing your edge.
You’ll learn so, SO much about your body. And your body will thank you for it, even if it does protest quite a lot at the sheer volume of plies it’s expected to do in any given class.
I’d say that you’ll notice lots of people struggling in class, but that’s not entirely true. You won’t notice anyone, but you and the instructor, because you’ll be far too busy. And so trust me when I say, nobody is really looking at you either. We all have a game face.
The Barre has taught me that fitness is half physical, half psychological. They make the first one challenging, but they help so much on the second one, that you love them anyway.
Notice I haven’t mentioned being plus size since that very first paragraph, right up there?That’s because it could not matter less here. Small groups means the instructors can help you find the right movement for your body type and your ability, and focus on your priorities too.
I love this place. I never thought I’d say that about anything that made me move my butt, but… I do. I’m proud as hell of what I can do now. I always, ALWAYS leave Barre feeling good – they wouldn’t let us leave any other way.
We are Barre. We come in all shapes and sizes, and we give precisely zero effs about anything but working hard… and playing harder.