Tucking For Two: Barre With Baby

Who better to to ask for mommy and mommy-to-be tips than NB Nashville’s Kelly Phillips? See her thoughts on tucking for two below..

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“Barre is one of the best methods of exercise during pregnancy. You can exercise safely right up until delivery (seriously)! It is low-impact and easy on the joints and the class can still be taken ‘in-full’ with a few minor modifications to ensure both you and your baby’s comfort and safety. Plus you’re using your own body weight primarily to create resistance so you can control the intensity of each exercise.

Listen to your body and remind yourself to slow down and take the modifications in class. Always talk to your instructor pre/post class about exercise modifications. Most any exercise that is done at the barre can be done on the mat and vice-versa. Try it both ways and see where you’re most comfortable as your body grows.

Eat a small snack before exercising, such as a banana or chia bar so you’re not exercising on an empty stomach, this will also aid in reducing light-headedness and potential nausea. And make sure to drink plenty of water to stay hydrated!

Barre exercise will keep you toned, healthy and fit pre-and-post pregnancy, as well as benefit labor and delivery. You’re strengthening not only your core and pelvic floor, but also increasing endurance, flexibility and even breath control in class.

We offer complimentary child care when you are cleared to return to exercise post-baby! Exercising releases necessary endorphins and provides that much needed energy boost when you’re exhausted and overwhelmed with a newborn. You need to take a little time for yourself daily and barre class is a perfect way to get some ‘me’ time in while also rebuilding your strength and toning your body post-baby. Plus there’s plenty of mama’s who have been there in class and it’s nice to have reassurance and advice from other clients and instructors who become fast friends at the barre!”

-Kelly Phillips

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Questions on tucking for two? Post below or email to info@neighborhoodbarre.com

Don’t forget that we offer specials on packages for new moms and those who are expecting. We also provide pregnancy modifications in our DVD workouts!

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Job Requirements: Top Knot

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Just in time for Monday Bunday, we bring you…. the 10 second top knot. Do you ever see the girls with the ‘effortless buns’ that you know good and damn well took them 1/2 an hour to create?! Us too, and let’s be honest, ain’t nobody got time for that. Truth be told, the perfect top knot is one that is quick, easy, and STAYS PUT while you work out.

Here we go…

Workout’s newest trend, The Half Bun. You either love it, or think it resembles your six-year old self, but here it is. (By the way, we love it and often wear it beyond the studio).

  1. You MUST have the proper supplies. Lucky for you the only item that is slightly pricey, but also the MOST IMPORTANT is the hairspray. Aveda Air Control is by far the best light-hold spray – it adds texture, isn’t sticky, and smells delicious. As a hairspray connoisseur, I have tried too many to count, and always go back to this one. Tip for thick hair: Double up on pony tail holders on both the 1/2 and full bun so that your pony tail stays tight!
  2. Create the 1/2 pony. You want the side parts of the 1/2 pony to hit at about the 1/2 way point of your eyebrows to prevent from grabbing too much, or too little hair. When in doubt, less is more.

3. Back-comb the pony to create texture. Split the pony in 1/2, SLOWLY back comb to create texture. This is what helps prevent the little spriggly wiggly hair from sticking out and also helps keep the bun secure.

4. Wrap and pin.  The wrap might take a hot minute to master, but the key is to not wrap too tightly. Press your left hand down on the bun as you wrap with the right, simply secure with a bobby pin or two in the back, then place one pin in the very front to keep the bun flat to your head and secure.

5. SPRAY with your Aveda Air Control and voila! For added volume hold out the hair around the part and add a few sprays so that it’s not flat to your head.

And now for the main event…. THE TOP KNOT.

Don’t worry, we actually saved the easiest for last. Keys to ensuring a perfect top knot – double up the pony tail holders and make sure that your pony tail placement is on point.

  1. Once securing the ponytail, when looking straight into the mirror, you should be able to see the pony tail holder and approximately 1 inch of volume.
  2. Back comb the pony starting on the inside. Split the pony into two sections, SLOWLY back comb the inside of the pony, then repeat with the other half
  3. Wrap slowly, pressing down on the hair with your opposite hand, being careful not to wrap too tightly.

  4. Place one to two pins in the back (do not cross the pins), and wrap the tail end around placing one to two pins in the front.
  5. SPRAY with your Aveda Air Control, and bam. You’re ready to hit the barre.

How’d you do?! Tag @neighborhood_barre and #mondaybunday to show us your effortless barre style!

 

photos by Sarah Rau, Social Media Specialist

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:

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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.
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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

Meet Your Bikini’s Newest Friend: Beyonc-Aid

Post-Fourth cookout (pig-out), we felt it appropriate to introduce you to our favorite summer vice, Beyonc-aid. The name is, of course, an ode to the Master Cleanse Diet Queen, Bey, who used this method to drop over 20lbs for Dreamgirls. However, instead of completely cutting solid foods out of the equation, we choose to be mindful of our choices throughout the day and use the drink to keep our appetite at bay.

Why we love it? It’s tasty, refreshing, and a natural diuretic to keep you from bloating in your swimmie. It also suppresses the appetite and boots the metabolism, which makes it extra useful as a morning juice. Try to drink a full serving before eating breakfast, then sip on it throughout the day to keep the puffiness away.

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What you need: Lemons, a lemon press, stevia in the raw, cayenne pepper

For one Bkr bottle:

Press 2 Lemons, add 1-2 packs of Stevia, and a pinch of cayenne pepper (don’t be shy, the spicier the better).

For a full 1/2 gallon pitcher (pictured):

7 lemons, 6-7 packs of Stevia, 1/4 teaspoon of cayenne pepper. Mix, chill, and enjoy 🙂

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

ROLL OUT! Foam Rolling: The Down And Dirty

This week’s post is brought to you by transplanted barre-bie, Bethany Stearns! She relies on her foam roller to get the max benefit from her barre workouts and is laying down what you need to know about this newly rising trend for peak muscle performance!

Do you ever have those days you feel like you could join the American Ballet Company or maybe even the Rockettes and other days you hope no one sees that your leg is barely hovering the ground in leg extension? More times than not, it has nothing to do with how strongyour muscles are, but how healthy and efficient they are working.

What is Foam Rolling? 

Foam rolling is a secret weapon used by elite athletes, physical therapists, and athletic trainers (like me) to help muscle recovery for those overworked muscles. When muscles are overused, microspasms or “trigger points” form in the muscle and leads to dysfunction in the surrounding fascia. Fascia is a thin, elastic connective tissue that covers muscles and when it becomes constrained it results in tension and pain. Foam rolling irons out that fascia and releases the muscles knots, like the sports massage you love except with a foam roller, you have all the control and its FREE.

How does it work? 

Foam rolling utilizes your own body weight to work out muscle tightness, trigger points and tension. Foam rolling relaxes and stretches your muscles as it improves inefficient muscle patterns, muscle imbalances, and decreased blood flow restoring optimal length and tension to the muscle and restoring fascial elasticity. As you work your muscles without properly working out the trigger points your muscles continue to tighten which can cause joint dysfunction, leading to muscle strains or other injury.

 Why should I foam roll?

  • Reduce muscle soreness
  • Increase circulation
  • Increase range of motion
  • Increase speed of muscle recovery

All of this means that using the foam roller can help you #werkit harder and stay in that pesky pretzel longer so you can burn it up at the barre. What are the Ground Rules? Warning: Foam Rolling won’t give you the warm and fuzzies. It can be uncomfortable, but working out your trigger points will make your muscles and fascia more elastic and ready for the next barre sesh.

  • Roll towards your heart when you are rolling out your arms or legs.
  • First time foam rolling? Follow up with plenty of water (I know you already drink half your body weight in ounces, right?), keep an eye out for any bruising or discoloration, and give your muscles a couple days recovery time. Your muscles will become accustomed to the discomfort over time.
  • Stop for 30-90 seconds when you find a place of tension in your muscle and hold it until you feel the tension release.
  • Keep your muscles as relaxed as possible as you roll it out.
  • Breathe through the uncomfortable parts. Trust me, my dog looks at me funny when I’m whimpering through the pain.
  • You shouldn’t have any pain once you take your body weight off of the foam roller. Just like when you get a sports massage it is uncomfortable during the massage but you feel so much better afterwards.
  • You can foam roll before or after your workout. I personally like it as a part of my stretching/cool down routine. It is most effective when it is immediately followed up by stretching.

What should I foam roll?  

IT Band: Its the muscular band that runs from your hip all the way down to the outside of your knee. Start at the outside of your thigh near your knee, prop your upper body on your elbow and roll up towards your hip. You can use your opposite leg to help propel your body along the foam roller. When you reach a trigger point (trust me, you’ll feel the zing) pause there for 20-30 seconds….this part isn’t fun. Breathe through it. In through your nose, out through your mouth. Continue moving, stopping at each trigger point. Move slowly. If you need a little more, bend your working leg’s knee towards your seat.

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Ouch! Repeat 1-2 more times

   Piriformis: It’s that small muscle that does most of the work during outside seat. I think it’s the key to releasing your low back and hip flexors, your whole barre practice (it is a part of your core). You will definitely feel every bit of work you did during seat while your roll it out. Sit on your foam roller with your feet firmly planted on the ground, prop your upper body with hands behind the foam roller and cross your ankle over your thigh to make the number four. Lean towards the leg that is crossed and roll over your outside seat. Same as before, stop at any trigger points you come across and hold for 20-30 seconds. Need a little more? Use a smaller piece of equipment – like a tennis ball!

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Hamstrings: Depending on how tight you’re holding your “heal to seat” you may have a more than a few trigger points to roll out. Sitting on the ground, place the back of both knees on the foam roller and place your hands on the ground at your sides to prop yourself up. Roll towards your seat, stopping at each trigger point for 20-30 seconds. Need a little more? Cross your legs at the ankle to put more pressure on the leg you are rolling out.

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 Mid-Back: Sitting on the ground with foam roller at lower back, lean backwards holding in your core, raise your hips off the ground and place hands behind your head and shoulder blades pinching that penny. Use your feet to push your body along the foam roller towards your shoulders. Make sure the foam roller is centered at your midline, you want it to do equal work on both sides of your spine. This will help with your posture at the barre and away from it, too.IMG_4328

Which one should I buy?

If you are “in it to win it” The Grid is my favorite. I suggest it to my athletes, bought several for the athletic training room, as a gift for my marathon running father-in-law, and have one sitting in my living room as we speak. It is covered in foam, but it is hollow which gives it more rigidity to work out those pesky trigger points. This one runs you about $40 for the 13-inch or $60 for the 26-inch on amazon or your local running store. Worth the investment, I promise. foam roller 2 When you barre so hard to get those long, lean muscles….let the foam roller do some work to help your stems reach their budding potential. Hurts sooooo good.

Take A Peek Inside Madison’s Closet….

Our resident fashionista, Madison Ford, always looks so put together! From her oversized sweaters to street sneaks, we love her look at Neighborhood Barre. Below she has put together 3 looks – including accessories – to help keep us studio to street chic whether heading to brunch, errands, or happy hour, after class.

If I could choose one word to describe my closet (besides color coordinated) it would be practical. Since I spend the majority of my day in ‘barre attire’ I have really tried to fill my closet with staple pieces that can easily be dressed up or down depending on my plans post-barre. The key in adding versatility to your workout wear is accessorizing.  By grabbing a pair of sunnies, throwing on a cute sneaker, stacking bracelets or wrapping up in a scarf, you gain the ability to tailor your assemble to channel your personal style and, better yet, transition from class to post-class plans. I’ve put together a few outfits (from the studio) as well as my own closet below:

Brunch: This outfit is perfect for a weekend class when you plan on treating yourself to a mimosa after. Navy is such a strong color for Spring and these pieces from Beyond Yoga are far too chic and comfortable to only be seen in the studio. I grabbed a lightweight scarf, my favorite Tkees flops, and Ray Bans to complete the look.blog1  blog4

 Ray Ban aviators, Tkees flip-flops, Beyond Yoga top and leggings – available at Nb (duh).

Shopping: We all know shopping and errands equal walking (and lots of it) so I chose a neutral outfit that I could make pop with some cute sneakers.  NB plug: I am obsessed with the mesh detail of this pocket tank and a bright sports bra would add some edge to the look.

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Nike Air sneakers, Beyond Yoga top and leggings, BKR water bottle

Happy Hour: My mantra when choosing an outfit to take from barre to the bar is to stick to neutrals, and by neutrals I mean black.  I chose these specific items because of the detailing. The quilted texture in these Beyond Yoga leggings and the strappy Alo bra add an element of edge to the pairing. I left off a top because while keeping on your workout tank is totally fine (and recommended), I would bring my favorite cashmere to throw on after class.

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Sublte Luxury cashmere, Alo sports bra, Beyond Yoga leggings, BKR water bottle

What’s your must-have studio to street piece? Comment below!

Follow us on Instagram for more #ootd @neighborhoodbarreknox

All Hail Hallie’s Gym Bag

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As we all know, Hallie Wallen is THE queen of all things fitness so naturally we were dying to see what she keeps stashed in her gym bag. The water, tennies, keys and cough drops came as no surprise, but there were a few items in particular that caught our eye….

1. Lilly Pulitzer planner: this is essential in helping Hallie plan her busy day and keep her classes straight. Besides the fact that the cover is super chic, Lilly planners have the best stickers for tracking important dates and great by-day and week tabs to help keep even the busiest girl organized. Want one? Go visit our one of our Nb staples, Deedee, at Palm Village Knoxville to get yours!

2. Karen Walker sunnies: Not only are these super stylish, but the updated wayfarer gives Hallie the ability to take her shades from barre class to brunch and we are all about the ease in which we transition workout wear to the streets.

3. Alo sports bra: Its no secret we are crazy about Alo at NB.  We love both the support and trendy mesh detail this bra offers..and isn’t everything better in black?! We think so. #allblackeverything (available at Neighborhood barre studios for only $48).

4. Evian Facial Spray and Ibuprofen: Super affordable and super essential when it comes to feeling refreshed after or in-between classes. As a headache sufferer, it’s important for Hallie to always be prepared to feel her best and both of these products help her to stay ahead of her symptoms.

5. Tiger Balm heat rub: Hallie soothes her soreness with this amazing topical pain reliever. Have you ever stood next Hallie and secretly thought to yourself  “what in the world is that SMELL!??” well, folks here it is.

 

What’s in your gym bag? Comment below with your essentials gear suggestions!

How I Lost One Inch In One Week

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My basic formula for a quick change goes a little something like this….

Water + Sleep – Gluten = Change

Now, I am not saying this formula is going to work for everyone, or that you will all of the sudden shed inches from your waist like some miracle concoction; but I am saying that for me, making these dietary and lifestyle changes produces faster and more noticeable results than exercise and ‘eating right’ do on their own.

Miss Parks says it best with her “water, water, water” chant after every class. She’s right. Increasing your water intake does so much for your body from reducing soreness after a workout, to giving you more energy, and even reducing belly bloat – resulting in a flatter stomach. I bet you thought the belly bloat was going to relate to the less gluten portion of the equation didn’t you? Not so for me. Drinking more water aids digestion and actually causes you to retain less (water retention can have a visible effect on your midsection). I’ve upped my water intake to at least a 1/2 gallon (a.k.a. 4 Bkr’s) with my goal being to consume twice that on a daily basis.

New chant for you, “sleep, sleep, sleep.” Think about it. What do you do when you’re sleepy and trying to stay awake? Eat, maybe? I do, and I don’t always make the best choices, because I crave either sugar or ‘comfort food.’ Being well rested helps your body crave the types of food you need, not the types of food that are quick and easy. Like Chick-fil-a. And pizza. And Coke Zero. Anyway….

That being said, I am not an advocate for completely cutting something out of your diet unless there is a necessary purpose, like allergies or intolerance. However, I have found that significantly reducing the amount of gluten I eat directly results in less ‘fluff’ around my midsection. Why is this? It makes me think about everything I eat. For some, the consumption of processed wheat, rye, or barley can cause bloat due to a food allergy or intolerance to gluten. However, for the majority of the public, who do not have a sensitivity or allergy to gluten (me), it simply means you are consuming fewer empty calories, and rather, replacing snacks and side dishes with well thought out choices like fruits and vegetables. Things to remember? Less gluten does not mean less calories. In fact, often times foods that are labeled ‘gluten free’ are higher in calories than those that are not. Be mindful of snacks containing more sugar and fat as a result of less gluten.

Snack of choice these days? Larabar Roasted Nut Roll (which has less sugar than some other gluten free snacks) and one whole Bkr.

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Final tip… Don’t concentrate on the numbers on the scale. They can be deceiving. I weigh the same now as I did a week ago, but I look better in a bikini 🙂