One of the best things about my apartment building is the on-site gym, which makes its closure during a six-week renovation especially irksome. Also problematic is the fact that I am poor poor poor, and also that I hate having to schmooze with gym types for their free intro offers. Seriously, why is that a thing? I signed up for a free week at Bally’s, but now I don’t want to go because they keep calling me. Ugh. Stop.
Solution? I’ve been springing for over-priced workout classes around the city. Wallet friendly? No. But I figure that each class costs less than a night out at the bars, and I feel infinitely better after doing a class. I’ve kept a list of interesting group classes on my computer, and now I’m challenging myself to try out a new one each week.
First up was Pure Barre, mainly because I wanted to figure out if I should spring for the offer it has going on through Gilt City (for its Brooklyn location). I went down to Union Square so I could catch a movie after, and was pleasantly surprised to find a pretty uncrowded class mid-day on a Saturday.
I went to Bar Method pretty regularly back in California, where things are cheaper (I wish I could quit you, complaining about New York prices), so I pretty much expected the same thing. And I pretty much got it. I let them know I was new to Pure Barre, but apparently I looked like I could do the moves passably enough, since I wasn’t approached prior to class to explain the workout, nor was I corrected once throughout the class (unlike the other two n00bs). I don’t actually think this is a bad thing. Sure, it’s probably bad for my spine or whatever is out of alignment when I have poor form, but I find nothing more frustrating than an instructor pushing on my right ass cheek in an attempt to help me into a deeper pretzel when my body really, truly (pinky swear) just doesn’t work that way. I’ve got dumps like a truck, and that’s pretty much as far as they’re going.
Pure Barre does differ in some respects. There were resistance bands, which seemed to be used mainly for stretching. There were no calf raises, which I missed because I’m generally pretty good at those. There was a tortuously long plank section right after arms, which I thought must be a joke. But generally I just bopped along to the music, legs quivering during the thigh portion, abs sad because they weren’t that good at the ab portion. It’s a killer workout, and I left class drenched and weak-limbed. And the pain the next day…oh, the pain the next day. I’m pretty sure my ribs were sore, and I don’t know how that’s a thing. My thighs were sore for literally three days. And while my hangovers usually only last two, I’ll take this three-day pain over that kind any day of the week. If I was made of money I’d throw it at this workout multiple times a week, but for the sake of variety I’m on to the next one…and maybe that Gilt City offer.
What: Pure Barre
Where: 78 5th Ave., 4th Floor, New York City
Difficulty: High. Although the movements aren’t hard, doing all of them is.
Soreness: Extreme, internal organs confusingly sore
Worth it: Yes