Pure Barre: You'll Wish For the Sweet Release of Death, Than Feel Amazing

Pure Barre is located next to Pinkberry on Greenville so yeah, I'd seen it a couple of times. I never paid any attention though because I figured it was for leggy, dancer types and I'm more of a stumpy, TV-watching type. But I happen to know one of those leggy types and she wanted to take the class so I said, "OK."

We signed up for a 6:00 a.m. Wednesday class because dark circles are, like, so en vogue. When we walked in they said, "Is this your first class?" "Yes." "OK, don't be surprised if you get shaky leg. We're literally wearing out and reshaping the muscle." Scoff. Yeah right, lady, I have the leg might of a midget. I ain't scared.

Cut to 20 minutes into the hour class. My legs were shaking so bad the Richter scale expressed concern. I don't know how to adequately explain how difficult this class is. Well, maybe I do ... what comes after impossible? I kid, I kid. It's not impossible, but it is a challenge. A wonderful, wonderful not-sure-I'm-going-to-make-it-up-the-stairs challenge.

At this point you have to be wondering what the eff we actually do in there, and the answer is a little bit of everything. You start with light weights and extend your arms out in front of you. Next is a series of hammer curls, little lifts and eventually push-ups. The trick is there is no stopping. None. You really do wear out each muscle before you head to the next one.

After arms we do abs and then thighs. For thighs, picture yourself holding on to the barre, pulling back and then lowering yourself into a chair position ... on your tip toes ... for what might have been eternity ... non-stop. After thighs we do butt, then more abs, then more butt and thighs and then right before you pray for the sweet release of death, class is over. And you feel aaaaamazing.

So much so that at the end of that first class I roll-crawled over and put my mat away and then staggered to the front desk, "Yes, I'd like to sign up for a month, please." I knew anything that difficult was going to produce major results. And it totally has. A solid testament to Pure Barre: 1. Every 6 a.m. class is PACKED and 2. I lost five pounds in a month. Today when I put on my skinny jeans and boots it looked like I was wearing jodhpurs. Which kind of stinks because now I have to go buy one of these velvet hats, learn horseback riding and probably change my name to Miffy. Again.

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Allison Perkins