Jennifer’s Story

Posted by on Apr 10, 2014 in Testimonials

As you look at my “before” and “after” pictures, perhaps you are wondering: where’s the big transformation?! At first glance, you may not see a major difference in how I look. But these pictures actually tell a lot about how the Bar Method has been a trans-formative force in my life.

Jennifer_Before

Jennifer_After

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

You see, I’m not one of those lucky women who can eat anything, occasionally work out, and look good in a bikini. In fact, I’ve struggled with my weight since I was a teenager. But I have managed to keep off over 40 pounds for over twenty years by working really hard: five days every week at the gym doing cardio, lifting weights, and closely watching what I eat has been my routine for decades. But I have the tendency to live by the mantra “if a little bit is good, a lot is better” and in 2012, my overly intense workouts backfired on me: I had surgery for a herniated disc in my lower back from pushing myself too hard during my workouts. Although the surgery was quite successful, afterwards I struggled to find ways to work out so that I could stay lean, and more importantly, uninjured. It was clear that I needed to learn a new way of working out that wasn’t beyond my physical limitations so that I could avoid future injuries and still feel good about my physic.

I came to the Bar Method in the early fall of 2013. I was so anxious before that first class: Would I be able to do the exercises pain-free? And of course, would the workout be effective? I doubted the claims I read about the workout and thought that it would only work for people who don’t have to work to stay lean. I told myself that I would give it one shot but that I probably wouldn’t be able to get results from the Bar Method that were comparable to lifting heavy weights.

But by the end of that very first class, it was clear to me: this was the workout for me. Forget lifting heavy weights, killing myself with cardio, and pain. The Bar Method was different and I was hooked. I was also sore (but not in pain- a major difference!), energized, and hopeful. I didn’t understand how sitting on the floor in a pretzel shape could leave my muscles as fatigued as if I had just lifted weights, but I didn’t really care. I had completed a workout that didn’t leave me in pain. I’m not ashamed to admit that I actually cried at the end of that first class out of relief.

Since that time, I’ve happily become a regular at the studio. I have learned that my workouts can still be intense (hello, three sets of thighs!) but also healing. I may wake up some days a little tight and slow moving, but by the end of my morning class, the stretching we do has helped me to loosen up and continue with the day pain-free. I’ve also learned to listen more closely to my body: I may never be able to lift my elbows during kickstand curl; I may never be able to go into L-shape my during round back; and, I may always be the slowest one to transition between exercises; but none of that matters if I am able to remain injury free. And, let’s be honest: I really enjoy the benefits of a tighter, higher tooshie, stronger core, strong thighs, and toned arms and shoulders!

Hopefully by now it is clear why I started off my transformation story by claiming that my before and after pictures aren’t too different when you first look at them. I consider it pretty amazing that I have been able to achieve similar results with a completely different- and enjoyable- workout. And, hopefully you understand why I consider the Bar Method a little miracle in my life. I still marvel that 3-pound weights make my arms as toned as curling 20 pounds and that using my glutes to move my leg inch or less can make my seat higher than it’s ever been.

I’m almost 40, and I’ve been on a constant journey to learn healthy eating habits and how to work out effectively and safely. Perhaps you’ve been on a similar journey and experienced some of the challenges I have experienced. I hope you can find some inspiration in my story and open yourself up to the transformative nature of the Bar Method.