The Skinny on Snacking

Keeping your diet on track during the colder winter months can be a daunting task. A cold salad isn’t quite as tempting in 20 degree temps as it is on a summer afternoon, BUT one of the best tricks to keep you from derailing and grabbing Chick-fil-a is…snacking! It is so important to keep your blood sugar levels constant in order to keep you from getting too hungry and rationalizing a not-so-healthy food option because you are quote-on-quote ‘starving’ or ‘hangry’. Through trial and error (and multiple last minute Fresh Market runs) we have found quick, on the go snack options that are satisfying and flavorful. See below to get the skinny on snacking….

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-Bars: Admittedly, it can be really tricky to find a bar that is actually good for you. Sugars can be disguised as ‘sugar alcohols’ and many bars have a not so desirable calorie and fat content. Our favs are the Chia Warrior bars (only 110 calories), because these bars are super easy to throw in your purse or gym bag and eat on the run. We feel the same about Lara Bars..undoubtedly the most desirable ingredients of any bar. The sugar content is higher then some, but its derived from dates so its all natural and easier for your body to digest. Plus, with all of the yummy flavors they offer you really can never get bored. Personal Fav: coconut cream pie!RAU_1045

-La Croix: Pretty sure our obsession with these drinks are obvious, but you really can’t beat a zero calorie carbonated beverage. We realize chugging water all day can be boring and sometimes you just want a little fizz. These are a great soda fix and they actually hydrate you, double bonus.RAU_1050

-Nut Butters: While there is nothing wrong with peanut butter, we are partial to almond butter. We LOVE Justin’s brand because not only do they taste great, but they come in size portioned packages that help you not get out of control, but are also convenient to throw in a bag.RAU_1065

-Other mentionables include: apples (a great pairing for the almond butter), clementines, raw nuts and seeds (pumpkin seeds are SO good for you), eggs (think protein), guac (pre-portioned packages are the best), green tea, avocado (cut in half,add salsa, sprinkle sunflower seeds,drizzle balsamic, viola!)

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Happy snacking barre-bies!

Comment below with your favorite healthful snacks!

The Bottomless Pit || a.k.a. Katy’s ‘Gym’ Bag

You most likely will not see Katy toting around a gym bag; you will, however, probably find her with an oversized purse on her shoulder, holding all of her essentials. Amongst the crumpled Post-Its, half eaten granola bars, mail, and bobby pins (hello, Monday Bunday) you will find a few items you’ll want to grab on your next run to the store..see below:

katys bag

Aveda aircontrol hairspray: perfect for a quick fluff in between classes, plus..its lightweight and smells great.

Dr. Jart Highlighter & Concealer: “I put it under my eyes to brighten me up after a long day…I should probably put some on now”- Quotes from Katy

NARS blush/bronzer combo: We can’t all have time to contour between classes, but this double duty will put the color back to your cheeks after a tired day of typing, tucking, and talking.

Daily Juice Kickstarter: made with lemon, agave and cayenne, it truly is the ‘kickstart’ you need to start your day on the right foot. Not only will it suppress your appetite and speed up your metabolism, it tastes delicious and is the original to it’s pseudo drink, “beyonce-aid”.

Macbook Air/iPhone: the Macbook’s light and portableI design makes it uber easy to set up shop on the go . You will also never see Katy without her other trusty work device – her phone! Actually, if you do, she is probably lost or been robbed, so help her.

Hermes bangle: “because everyone needs a chic accessory” – Katy

Meet Amber // Meet Amber’s Gym Bag

Meet Amber// 

Resident Neighborhood Barre extraordinaire and co-star of Barre Skinny Vol. 1 & 2.
amber headshot

Meet Amber’s ‘Gym Bag’//use this one

Curious to see what this long-time barre-bie carries in her super chic Milly bag? Us, too..so we took a peek inside to find out!

Here are the essentials…

1. Batiste Dry Shampoo: This stuff is perfect if your locks need a refresher but you’re in a time crunch (i.e. you have dinner plans at 7:00 but you HAD to go to 5:30 barre because your sanity depends on it).

2. Chia Bar: These bars are small and mighty (only 100 calories with 4 grams of protein!). The chocolate peanut butter flavor is delicious, and the chia seeds keep you feeling fuller for longer than most 100 calorie bars.

3. Lilly Pulitzer planner: This planner is a great way to keep up with everything from work to play. *Side note- I only write in mechanical pencil…life is always changing and it’s nice to be able to erase a mistake every once in a while 😉

4. Mineral Fusion Powder SPF 30: My skin has never reacted well to facial sunscreens, so this product has been a game-changer for me. The mineral powder controls oily skin and provides protection from the sun.

5. Almay Oil-Free Eye Makeup Remover Pads: There’s nothing cute about eye makeup running down your face during/after a sweaty workout. These pads are great at removing makeup without adding more oil to the surface of your skin.

6. Clean and Clear Hydrating Gel Moisturizer: This stuff is like a drink of water for your face. It’s a perfect way to wake my skin up before teaching a 6 a.m. class

Seeded In The South Spills Her Gym Bag!

Natalie Bell - Image from SeededInTheSouth.com

Natalie Bell – Image from SeededInTheSouth.com

Seeded In The South – you might already be following her down-to-earth and super chic fashion blog (if not, you should) – has spilled out her Gym Bag to show us how she stays fab throughout her busy day. Whether attending her Neighborhood Barre class at 12:00 or 5:30, she’s always prepared for work or happy hour with a few essentials that keep her fresh, clean, and STYLISH (duh).

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Natalie Spills her Rebecca Minkoff (dying) gym bag Just for us!

Blue Print Juice & Kind Bars (Whole Foods): I’m always on the road for work and popping into barre at 12, so lunch or snacks are key!
favorite juice– pineapple, apple, mint
favorite bars – peanut butter dark chocolate & blueberry pecan

Sports Bra (Lululemon $48)– black leopard print with crisscross back

Black Crops (Lululemon $96) – current favorite are the ones with mesh inserts because I throw on a tshirt and flats for lunch or happy hour

Hair brush & dry shampoo – MUST – love treseme (Walgreens $4.99) – cheap and effective

Ear phones – always run to music

Sunnies (Ray-Ban $150) – blue Ray-Ban aviators (slight obsession with aviators of all kind).

Tory Burch make up bag (Saks) – sometimes I go from barre or gym to work, dinner, etc – always have the basics: Dior foundation, Nars bronzer and blush, Laura Mercier pressed powder (best for covering up oily spots and t zone), Chanel mascara

Kate Spade GLASS water bottle (Kate Spade $30)

Ponds Cleansing Towelettes (Walgreens $4.99) to remove any sweat or dirt before reapplying or touching up my make up (cheap and soothing!)

Be sure to follow Natalie on Instagram @seededinthesouth

Something Grippie, Something Food, Something Neon, & Some Tunes… What’s In My Gym Bag?

Katy Branstetter
Owner, Neighborhood Barre

We are frequently asked about gym bag essentials here at Neighborhood Barre, so we’ve decided to open our bags and share with you our ‘must haves’ for a barre girl on the go.  Here is a break down of my favorite things, including my top 5 MUST HAVE products. What do we all need? HYDRATION! You hear Hope say it after every class, “water, water, water!” and boy is she right! Water is an essential for every workout and I keep plenty of it on hand in my bag, in my car, and in my purse. I also make sure to pack little snacks to keep up my energy level. I usually pack fruit – bananas, strawberries, or grapes – but I always keep a reserve of cliff bars in my bag! Right now I’m really into the Kids Z Bars and the Mojo Peanut Butter Pretzel (yum!). My grippie socks are also always readily available… I keep at least a pair or two in my bag at all times. Even if I don’t wear them every day, I like to have the option in case I feel a little slippery. If you read my last post you know I like to fix hair – braids, buns, twists, what have you – and I’m usually prepared. I keep a stash of pony tail holders (satin around the wrist, tiny neon in my bag), headbands, and bobbie pins. Also, I live and die by MY WATCH.  Not only was it a gift from a good friend when I first opened the studio, it’s fabulously neon, and I use in EVERY CLASS. For demo classes and privates, I keep a portable speaker in my bag. I love the little Philips fold up speaker! It’s small enough not to crowd my bag, but loud enough to use almost anywhere! Lastly, I’m trying to convince myself to do more cardio in my free time (what’s that??). I find that keeping my shorts and shoes with me alleviates any excuses that might arise when the opportunity does come. And drum roll please for my TOP 5!!!

1.  Rainwater Farm CLEAN MIST Spray – It is so refreshing after a hot and sweaty workout! Just give a little shake and a little spritz and you are set to go from the studio to the street, smelling great and feeling refreshed! Our barre-ers must agree, because we have a hard time keeping it on the shelves!

2.  Aveda Hairspray –  Love this stuff. It goes with me everywhere. Keep your fly-aways at bay and give a little scrunch and lift to post-workout hair. Not much needs to be said, except that it is THE BEST thing I’ve ever put on my hair.

3.  Christian Dior Blackout Mascara – I’m a mascara junkie… I love it almost as much as hairspray. The Blackout is by far my favorite, and it has been for years.

4.  MAC Paint Pot – I don’t wear a lot of makeup unless I’m going out, but the paint pot is great for eyelids and cheek bones on days when your complexion looks a little flat. I have it in Rubenesque, which is a bronze shimmer.

5.  Bare Minerals Brush On Sunscreen – This is a great product if you spend any time exercising outdoors. It’s a brush-on SPF 30 powder with light makeup coverage. I like the powder because it doesn’t tend to run down your face when you sweat like some cream sunscreens. A good on-the-go product!