Health & Beauty

Setting the Barre

February 6, 2018

Who remembers wanting to be a ballerina as a child? Their elegance, strength and beautiful costumes were and still are mesmerizing. While most of us won’t be headed to Juilliard any time soon, there may still be another way to get in on the fairytale. Below, Barre Fitness founder and instructor Ella Jotie shares how! —Rachel Johnston


Hi Ella! Tell us how Barre differs from other forms of exercise?

Barre Fitness gets you a dancer’s body … without the dance! It’s an efficient workout that combines the best elements of ballet barre with pilates, sports conditioning and stretching that will tighten, tone and transform the body. The technique centres on postural strength and small isometric movements that are low impact but very high in intensity. It’s an intelligent form of working out that is unique, safe, sustainable and incredibly effective! There is nothing formulaic about our classes, you get a great workout but in our studio, you never just go through the motions. Our certified instructors celebrate and support the community of women in the studio, making sure everyone is clear on how to work best with their own body. Our clients come away energized by their workouts, as well as, by the collective experience.

What are some tips to stay focused on our fitness goals in the new year?

It’s common for motivation to fade. The key is "get back on the horse"—just because you didn’t make it to your workout today doesn’t mean you have to give up on your goals. Refrain from beating yourself up about it. Start fresh each morning and choose self-love over self-destruction. Set short term, easy achievable goals and go from there. Make sure you are doing what you love—the best and most effective workout is one that you love to do. Find something that is fun and that you can stick to and you can’t go wrong. Form a healthy addiction to meditation. I love my Headspace app and it helps me be present for 10 minutes every morning. The time I spend working mindfully helps me to set healthy intentions for my day. It takes time to get used to at first, but it’s made a tremendous difference in my work AND my workouts. Take small steps for big success. It’s the small things that you do every day that will lead you to your best self. Consistency is the key!


Often it’s hard to squeeze a gym workout into a busy day. Is there a quick and effective barre routine we can do at home?

Even 10 minutes a day goes a long way. For some quick and easy workouts you can do at home, on-the-go or at the office visit the Barre Fitness video library. We’ve got a whole new series of free online workouts debuting in 2018!

Speaking of positive changes to start the year, what are some healthy eating habits we can implement into our lives?

Eat clean. So what is clean eating exactly? It means no preservatives, no fillers, no junk—just real, honest, nourishing food. Choose fresh, organic veggies and fruits or locally sourced organic meats and make sure to count nutrients, not calories. Read food labels! If it has more than six ingredients or just one you can’t pronounce, put it down. Better yet, cut out processed packaged foods all together. Cut back on refined sugar and enriched white flour and go for whole grains instead and healthy carbohydrates like dark leafy greens. You will notice a difference! And don’t forget to drink lots of water.


And your fave post-workout meal?

I like to replenish my body after a workout. My easy favourite is almond butter on sprouted whole grain toast, sliced banana, a sprinkle of chia seeds and a dash of cinnamon. My on-the-go favourite? The Green Protein smoothie from the Juice Truck. Your post workout meals should always include protein and a dose of healthy nutrient dense carbohydrates—you need BOTH for optimal recovery, preferably within 30 minutes of your sweat session.


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