Trying Something New

It’s no secret around here that I’m a big fan of the weight room.

It’s also no secret that the only real conditioning I do are stadium runs and hill sprints.

I can’t remember the last time I went for a run, or, for that matter, attended a group exercise class. That’s not to say that there’s anything wrong with these things, they’re just not part of my usual routine. I used to go to a cardio kickboxing class when I was in high school that I loved. I went to group fitness classes every once in a while in my early twenties, and used to dabble in yoga (but haven’t been now in a couple of years). I have even tried a Zumba class.

Yes. Me.

Not my thing.

However, I was recently given the opportunity to team up with the New Balance Lace Up For The Cure program and attend a few complimentary fitness classes here in Boston. The first of those was Wednesday night, when I tried my very first Barry’s Bootcamp class.

I’ve heard of Barry’s before, and know that they have a very good reputation as a tough fitness experience. I have to admit that I was a little bit intimidated and nervous going into it… I can dead lift 1.5x my body weight and do stadiums every week, but the last time I did a bootcamp type workout must have been years ago.


Verdict? It. Was. Tough. It was a completely different style of workout than my body is used to, and for some reason I have a really difficult time working out at the end of the day (I usually train around 9 am, sometimes earlier). The class was broken into floor work and treadmill work, with groups alternating so that everyone did two 15 min floor sessions and two 15 min treadmill sessions.

Barrys1This pic kind of shows the craziness in the class. Floor work with the row of treadmills across the back of the studio. 

It was Shoulders/Back/Abs day, so the floor sessions were broken up into what seemed like endless reps of push ups, rows, chest presses, and crunches.  Even though I’m used to lifting much heavier weights, the high reps really fatigued me as I apparently have no upper body endurance. I’ve never been so humbled by a pair of 12 lb dumbbells, and frankly, it was almost kind of embarrassing. The treadmill sessions were a mix of interval runs and hill intervals, and that was definitely the part of class that kicked my ass the most. Yes, I run stadiums every week, but the last time I actually ran was back in June, and before that I don’t think I had run in about a year. I’m not lying when I say I. Dont. Run.

Barrys3The club lighting and live DJ was a pretty awesome feature! 

All in all though, it was a great class and I’m really glad that I was given the opportunity to go! It was also right around the corner from where I work, which made it super convenient in the middle of the week. I’m honestly not sure that it’s the type of workout that I would go to on a regular basis — I think I would enjoy an outdoor bootcamp a little bit more. Get me off those treadmills, ya know? For some reason, I also just didn’t feel as accomplished as I do after a great lifting session, but that’s just me. Over all, I’m so glad I was able to go. I had a ton of fun and got to meet some other Boston bloggers, which was awesome!

The thing that made the whole experience even better though happened before class even started. All of us that were there with the New Balance group got together, and three breast cancer survivors shared their stories with us. They all had incredible stories, one of them was even a two time survivor at the age of 43, but the thing that stood out to me was the positivity amongst these women. Their stories and experiences put that evening into perspective. As Dustin, the bootcamp leader told us all, no matter how much we were struggling in class that night, it was nothing compared to what these women and other cancer survivors have gone through.

Barrys4All of us girls with the Lace Up For The Cure program. It was so great to meet Athena and Caroline after I’ve been reading their blogs for a while now! 

A great sweat session mixed with a great cause? Sounds like a win-win situation to me! I’d like to send a huge thank you to New Balance for the chance to try this class out, the three amazing survivors for sharing their stories with us, and for Dustin and the rest of the Barry’s crew for making it such an awesome event.

Readers: Have you ever been to a Barry’s Bootcamp? What did you think of it? Are you more inclined to group fitness or other types of workouts? 

Also, don’t forget that you can dedicate any of your workouts to breast cancer survivors by using #LaceUp365 on social media!  

*Disclaimer: I was not compensated for this blog post, although I was given complimentary admission to the Barry’s Bootcamp class. All thoughts and opinions are my own. 

*All photos are courtesy of the NB team that was at the event. 

10 thoughts on “Trying Something New

  1. THats seems like a really great class! I love boot camp classes and
    Have trouble Finding good ones in my area!

    1. It was fun! I know Barry’s has them in several major cities, and Boston also has a lot of small local ones that are run in parks around the city. Perhaps your area has some of those?

  2. Great recap! You did an awesome job, even though this type of workout isn’t your “thing.” I loved meeting you guys too!

    1. Thanks, Athena! I had a great time, it’s fun to try something new for a change!

  3. It’s funny how you say you don’t feel as accomplished after something like this class compared to a good lifting session. I’m the opposite! I’ve just started trying to get into weights but I just don’t feel the same afterwards compared to a good cardio session. I guess it’s just about what we know and love, and learning to accept the new challenges!

    1. It really is all personal preference… I know people who don’t feel accomplished unless they’ve run at least 6 miles!

  4. What a great idea! They should do that in my gym in holland too… im all for it!

    I love and prefer weight lifting like you do. classes arent ‘my thing’. yet i do try out every new thing at least once. I do believe its good to get your body working in different ways, so try to balance out my weekly training schedule by putting in at least one cardio kickbox class and a hatha yoga session. Well… I TRY 😉

    every exercise makes me feel different when done. but i also feel most accomplished after lifting. but thats because its a more individual work out with more personal focus (in my opinion). classes make me feel unfocused, a bit chaotic. its a reason why its not really my thing, i guess. it can be fun and diversity is a good thing 🙂

    1. Yes, I agree, great choice of words! I did feel just a bit unfocused a chaotic — I think it’s because my lifts take so much mental focus, and this was just all over the place. I think that diversity is good though to a certain extent, and would like to continue trying new classes every once in a while!

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