Barre Forte LoHi: A Review {Two Week Free Trial Giveaway}

Here’s the thing: I’m active, but it largely falls into the running/CrossFitting/backpacking category. I tell myself I’m going to practice yoga more but I continue to fail, and I shudder to think what it would look like should I attempt to recreate my more graceful years as a ballerina.

How in the world did my legs bend that way when I was 20?!

So when Barre Forte emailed me about a new location in LoHi (near the walking bridge), I was skeptical. Was this going to be like hazing for the clumsy? But they continued to pique my interest when they offered to host me in a private class for up to 20 of my friends. The final deal breaker? The two owners are ultra runners that use Barre Forte classes as cross training for races. And they have muscles that look like this.

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Needless to say, I was in. Any time I can catch up with my girlfriends is going to be a win, and I knew we would have fun….even if I hadn’t a clue as to what we were doing. Turns out, they also knew what they were doing, so I was the only bull in the china shop.

But I digress.

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PC: Will Rochfort

The ten-or-so of us showed at the new Barre Forte LoHi location {because I’m not sure I have 20 female friends} and put on our sticky socks. The floor has carpet, but the studio suggests grippy socks to make sure you don’t slide all over the place. Since I was willing to take any advice I could get, I asked if I could put on two pairs of grippy socks for extra security. Turns out, the answer is no.

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Then, our instructor, Leah, directed us to grab two sets of dumbbells: a lighter set and a heavier set. This is where error #1 of the day came in. I asked her what they would be used for and she said the heavy set was for biceps and whatnot and the smaller set was for shoulders. I asked her what she suggested for heavy and she said, “Oh, you know…maybe use the 5 or 8 or 10 pound dumbbells.” Thinking I could hang because I CrossFit and whatnot, I grabbed the 8 pound set. Poor life choice, my friends.

After snagging our weights, we lined up at various spots on the barre and class begins. Just like in my ballet classes of yore, a ballet barre was stretched across the walls around the classroom. I carefully positioned myself behind Leah, half hiding and half trying to watch her. But once the music kicked up, I could barely focus: this stuff was hard!

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My friends Caryn and Megs are kinda ripped

Near as I can, Barre Forte’s standard barre class focuses on small movements that seem innocent until you’re into the second minute. Then, innocent turns to torture– in a good way.

For example, Leah asked us to grab our “heavy” weights and I picked up my 8 pounders. We then did a few minutes of bicep curls, starting with single reps and moving on to more deliberate repetitions {i.e. lifting for four counts, lowering for four counts.} We did those until I thought I might die…and then switched back to single reps. Y’all, I seriously got to the point where I was concerned I couldn’t lift my 8 pounder anymore….and then looked around to realize all of my friends had grabbed much lighter weights. Rookie mistake, but my pride wouldn’t let me put the weight down!

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Fake life

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Real life

After working through the weights, we moved to the barre and did a series of exercises that took me straight back to my dancing days. We spent lots of time on our toes, and even worked through a series of attitude-esque exercises that left my butt feeling like a hot iron was left on. But none of that came close to the searing sensation working through my calves as we continued to practice every movement while on our tip-toes.

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I could detail every movement to you, but I honestly don’t think words encapsulate the experience. Leah managed to find small movements and exercises that targeted every single muscle in my body, and then a few more that I didn’t even know I had. Truthfully, it was shocking how tough this class was for me…and how sore I was the next day!

But you know, that was the absolutely best part. I’m definitely not one of those people that thinks I only need running or I only need CrossFit, and it was a good reminder that your body gets used to any activity you do. Plus, cursing a blue streak with my closest friends is always better than spending a night at a bar. Amiright?!

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Did I mention a wicked storm rolled in while we were there?

Here’s the fun part: Barre Forte LoHi is willing to give one local person a free two-week trial. I would love for the winner to report back and let me know if you found the classes as tough as I did! So, all you have to to enter is this: leave me a comment and let me know why you want the free trial. Easy enough!

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Giveaway will be open until Wednesday, July 20. I’ll notify the winner on July 21.

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21 Comments

  • Reply Hayley July 14, 2016 at 7:22 am

    I live literally right across the street! I’m recovering from a running injury and would love another way to cross train and work on strength 😊

  • Reply Heidi @BananaBuzzbomb July 14, 2016 at 10:23 am

    Obviously not entering…but wanted to comment. I hear so many rave reviews about Barre that I REALLY want to check it out. Intense but low impact. I think I could dig it.

  • Reply Paula Johnson July 14, 2016 at 10:56 am

    I have always been so intrigued by Barre classes, I’d love to give it a whirl! It would be so fun to try a different type of fitness class. I have zero dancing background, so this could also turn out to be hugely entertaining and a true test! 😂

  • Reply Amanda Matheson July 14, 2016 at 11:36 am

    I’ve never tried a barre class before! I’ve heard they are brutal from a number of people, and I’m totally game to give it a try. Mostly, I’m just curious because I’ve never done it before 🙂

  • Reply Valerie Giroux July 14, 2016 at 12:16 pm

    I want the free trial because I want them to kick my butt!

  • Reply Sheila July 14, 2016 at 9:18 pm

    I just moved to LoDo and would love an excuse to get out-and-about in my new neighborhood!

  • Reply Paulina Dao July 15, 2016 at 9:54 am

    BARRE IS SO HARD!!!! I’ve done one traditional barre class and a bunch of CardioBarre stuff and oh god, it hurts so much and makes me feel like the biggest loser. Also I’m really bad at following along and understanding wtf is going on.

  • Reply mary b July 15, 2016 at 10:44 am

    Wish I was local! Barre is an awesome workout. My sister in law owns Go Figure Barre Studios and it’s my favorite workout to do when I’m able to get to one of her classes (she doesn’t have any studios local to me). Those little movements are killer. Always such a challenge that kicks me butt!

  • Reply Barre Forte LoHi July 15, 2016 at 1:23 pm

    Thank you so much for the fantastic write-up! You gals are welcome back anytime! First class is FREE for new clients so we hope all your readers come check us out!

  • Reply Becka July 15, 2016 at 2:13 pm

    I’m already taking classes there and I love it. Very humbling for sure. How can I be so weak in all these places? I love the studio and plan on continuing using barre as cross training.

  • Reply Malia Crouse July 15, 2016 at 8:22 pm

    I’m a former triathlete turned runner and I’m always interested in anew ways to cross train and improve on my weak areas like hips, glutes, mobility and flexibility. Barre sounds like an amazing workout and owned by incredible runners who swear by it. I can only imagine that the two week free trial would get me hooked!

  • Reply Bryanna July 16, 2016 at 5:03 am

    I’ve been super curious about barre, I don’t know why I haven’t tried it. I currently do Crossfit, and I bet they compliment each other more than one would think! their space looks beautiful too, I love LoHi. Thanks for sharing!

  • Reply Karla July 18, 2016 at 7:03 am

    I’ve seen barre forte on classpass but would love to win the two weeks to get the full experience!

  • Reply Mauri Lenderman July 18, 2016 at 7:07 am

    I am brand new to your blog – and moving to Denver in two weeks! – and have recently started following Barre Forte LoHi on Instagram. Barre has been my go-to work out in Nashville and I have been excited to try Barre Forte LoHi once I get settled in CO. I would love to try it out through your give-a-way! Love your blog and will continue to read as a resource for my adventures in CO.

  • Reply Ariella Jolly July 18, 2016 at 8:37 am

    I used to be a dancer, so barre classes sound appealing to me. I’ve wanted to try a barre class for several years. I ran a marathon this year and after pretty much ONLY running for 4 months, I realized I need to get my strength training game back on board. I would love to try barre for a free two-week trial!

  • Reply Ana Neumann July 18, 2016 at 9:45 am

    I work right across the street from Barre Forte LoHi and have been wanting to go check it out for weeks now! I am an active 14er hiker and trail runner and think barre would help build up the strength in my muscles in order to prevent injury. I would love the opportunity to try it out and report back!

  • Reply Danielle Hayutin Weingarten July 18, 2016 at 10:00 am

    Great article, I have tried Barre classes before. They are tough! I probably need to try it again. I haven’t given it a try since having my spine operated on and fused. Hmmmm….thinking. 🙂

  • Reply Rachel July 18, 2016 at 12:57 pm

    I would love to check this out! I am always looking for new ways to cross-train and this looks fun. And hard!

  • Reply Lish July 18, 2016 at 7:13 pm

    I live right across the walking bridge and have been eyeing this place up ever since they hung the sign. I definitely want to try it out!

  • Reply Andrea L July 18, 2016 at 8:17 pm

    Would love a chance to try them out and feel a good burn!

  • Reply Amanda L. July 19, 2016 at 3:07 pm

    I love trying out new classes and ways to motivate myself to get moving. This sounds like fun! The painful kind of fun…

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