You're an instructor at Pure Barre, tell us a little bit about why you love that workout and what made you decide to become an instructor?
KB: I fell in love with Pure Barre after my first class. I immediately saw how this is a lifelong workout with ample physical and mental benefits. I grew up dancing ballet and jazz and never thought I'd find a workout that evoked the love I had for dancing as a kid into my adult life. I love that it is musically driven (I think this is my favorite aspect), is individualistic while being community driven at the same time, allows you to take your body at its own pace (which can differ from day-to-day) and grants you 50 minutes to yourself. This is not a workout you can get lost in your thoughts and phone in; you have to be present and in the moment which I think we can all agree is not as easy as it sounds when we have so much going on in our lives. When I walk out of a Pure Barre class, I feel physically strong and mentally relaxed.
I struggled with the concept of becoming a teacher because of how reserved I can be. It's not uncommon for me to not be heard in a conversation at a moderately loud restaurant because I can be soft-spoken and my heart rate drastically increases if there's a chance I have to speak in front of a group of people. Considering these are two key components of leading a Pure Barre class, I was conflicted. I knew I believed in the workout and all the good that it brings to anyone who walks into the studio (mentally, physically and emotionally) but I wasn't sure if I was the right person to lead others through that. Thankfully the studio saw something in me that I didn't quite yet see in myself and before I knew it, I was on the plane to Denver, embarking on an adventure that has helped form who I've become as a woman, a wife and a mom.
I never fully understood someone who said they loved their job before I started teaching Pure Barre. I thought a job was something you did to fund the life you wanted to live. I had no idea a job could become a passion, something that excited you daily, something that made your heart happy. I love teaching Pure Barre and I can't imagine my life without it. Everything that I love about the workout is why I ultimately got on that plane and why I wanted to teach. I love guiding folks through their workout for the day - encouraging and motivating members to take 50 minutes to push themselves both physically & mentally, giving them 50 minutes of their day to focus on them. One extra push up on their toes, taking their seat a half an inch lower in chair, staying up for the 90 second plank - all things we strive towards as early as our first class - I get to help people accomplish the goals and intentions they set for themselves and there is no other feeling like it when they come out of class with a smile, knowing they achieved something they hadn't yet been able to do.
What is your favorite spot to pick up a healthy snack/meal?
KB: Barvida in Darien is my go-to for a quick, healthy and unbelievably delicious snack & lunch. After a great workout (or a morning of teaching back-to-back classes), I love to pick up the Mood Manager with added vanilla protein powder and the Vitamin CEO. I am both lactose & gluten free so it is rare that I can walk into a restaurant and feel comfortable ordering pretty much anything I want. As a bonus, their smoothies come in these adorable lidded glass jars that make an excellent salad dressing container!
What is your favorite way to unwind?
KB: I grew up learning and loving to cook from a very early age. Reading cookbooks, watching cooking shows and helping my parents in the kitchen was always something that brought me happiness and peace. There is nothing that brings me more joy than walking into the market looking for the best, freshest ingredients and creating something for my loved ones. When I'm in the kitchen cooking (while listening to classic rock!), I'm at my most relaxed. Watching my family then enjoy the meal just wraps it all up in a bow for me!
What are your health & wellness goals for 2024?
KB: For 2024, I have a few health & wellness goals I would like to work towards. Physically, I would like to improve on my flexibility. Pure Barre has brought me such a long way from where I started. I have always wanted to do a split and for the first time this year (during thigh stretch this summer), that seemed like it was a true possibility. I believe if I keep working towards it, 2024 might just be the year I can complete one, fully.
If there's one thing everyone knows about me, it's that I'm a true night owl. I seem to come to life after 5PM which is a big reason I love teaching the evening classes. I don't know many at the studio who don't joke when they see me on the schedule for an 8AM class. I could never teach a 6AM class (I envy those who do!) but would gladly host a 12AM class if that was of interest to anyone! While I don't think I'll be a morning person any time soon, I do see how I can improve upon the time that I'm awake. I would love to commit to disconnecting from electronics earlier in the evening and using my time to read more books. I have been known to read cookbooks in bed (very similar to a novel); I have a library that I would like to make my way through in 2024.