As I sit down to write this I find myself at full pelt heading into the menopause and contemplating a dry January after rather too many months of celebration and knocking back the wine!
Now the festivities are over and weeks of shopping, planning, wrapping and more shopping have culminated in several days of constant over-indulgence. If you are anything like me, just the thought of another sausage roll is enough to send you diving under the duvet and staying there until January is over!
It has to be said January is a bit of a dull month – it’s cold and grey outside, nobody has the money or motivation to go out, we’re feeling sluggish from all the rich food and alcohol and then to top it all off we make endless New Year resolutions that we will (probably!) fail by mid-January and then spend the rest of the month beating ourselves up about it.
Top of the list of resolutions for a lot of people is the much talked about ‘Dry January’ – giving up alcohol for the whole of the month. Having a rest from alcohol can give your general wellbeing a massive boost and brings many health benefits – increased energy, improved sleeping patterns, weight loss, more radiant skin and a healthier liver to name but a few. While we all can appreciate these benefits it can be hard to abstain in a month that is already so dull - but let’s make it different this year.
What we need is a distraction, so this year let’s put this period of dryness to good use and take ourselves from the bar to the Barre. In less time that it takes to pour and drink a couple of glasses of wine we can start a new regime and help discover a fitter, stronger version of you for the new year.
For those of you that have yet to come across Ballet Barre, it’s a super-effective, super-fun workout that is based on classic ballet positions and incorporates Yoga and Pilates exercises. Ballet Barre focuses on small isometric movements, allowing you to do more repetitions and strengthen those muscles without the sweat and intensity of traditional exercise classes.
It has heaps of benefits. Targeting several muscle groups at the same time, it increases flexibility, strengthens your core, improves your posture and is low impact. Suitable for every single body, no matter what age, shape or fitness level it really is a ‘one class fits all’, but most of all it is FUN - and when exercise is fun we’re more likely to stick with it.
I started teaching Ballet Barre in my studio in rural Kent a few years ago – teaching a wide range of ages and abilities, we’ve had plenty of laughter and fun. It got me thinking, how easy it would be to fit this into your daily life at home and so my online Ballet Barre course was born! It gives you 14 days of sessions that you can do at your own pace, to fit in with your own schedule. Each session is no more than 15 minutes long, with warm up and cool down sessions to ensure you are exercising safely.
I’ve shared with you three days of my at-home workout and if you like what you see, find me on Facebook. Together we can help you achieve the best version of you in 2019 - I’ll see you at the Barre!
Sarah Maxwell is an award-winning fitness professional and lifestyle coach with over 30 years in the industry. She takes a realistic approach and understands first-hand the pressures we face in today’s world, as she herself tries to juggle the demands of two teenagers, a husband, two dogs, three guinea pigs and multiple chickens and the running of a business.