Featured Playlist: September

As you’ve probably experienced, good songs and strong beats can play a big part as to how motivated and energetic you feel when you take a Bar Method class. It’s not just your imagination — science has shown the powerful effect that music can have on people. Knowing this, we carefully create each class playlist to take you from warmup to ab work and all the way through final stretch.

This month, take the feel good vibes with you anywhere while playing our featured September playlist. Bar Method Music Editor Ayden Graham says, “This is a ‘best-of The Bar Method’ picks mix made to pump you up for aerobic cross-training, give you a moment to catch your breath, then dive into some deep core work and a final cool down. Just like any Bar Method class, you’re sure to feel satisfied at the end of this musical journey.”

Featured Playlist: September

1. Can’t Get Enough feat. Mariah McManus by BRKLYN, Mariah McManus
2. Goodness Gracious – The Chainsmokers Extension by Ellie Goulding
3. We All Fall Down (feat. Jamie Lidell) by A-Trak, Jamie Lidell
4. Don’t – Don Diablo Remix by Ed Sheeran
5. Dirty Work by Austin Mahone
6. Here for You by Kygo and Ella Henderson
7. In the Morning by ZHU
8. I Loved You (feat. Melissa Steel) – Extended Mix by Blonde, Melissa Steel
9. Summer Nights by Tiesto and John Legend
10. Call It What You Want – Planet of Sound Remix by Foster the People and Planet Of Sound
11. Fire by Hudson Thames
12. HandClap by Fitz and The Tantrums
13. Stevie Knows by Olly Murs
14. Summer Was A Day by Pete Yorn
15. Magnetised – Piano Tapes by Tom Odell
16. You Are So Beautiful by Bootstraps

Do you use Spotify? Save this month’s playlist to your favorites to stream it wherever you are.

New Studio Announcement: Darien, CT

After the recent Los Gatos and Campbell studio openings in California, we’re extra excited to announce a new Bar Method location on the East Coast, welcoming Lara Meehan and Anna Trepanier from the Darien, Connecticut studio to our growing family of studio owners! Read on to learn about what inspired Anna and Lara to make the leap as studio owners and what they’re looking forward to most as they grow their own Bar Method community.

The Bar Method, Darien, CT

Tell us a little bit about yourselves.

Anna says, “I grew up in southern California, but always felt like an east coast girl at heart. I moved across the country to attend NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts after high school and never looked back. I enjoyed a career as a film, TV, and commercial actress in NYC for 10 years before falling head over heels in love with The Bar Method. I now live in Stamford with my husband and our French bulldog, Superman.

Lara tells us, “I grew up in western Pennsylvania, then moved to New York in 2001 to begin my career in advertising. After about 6 years, I decided to switch gears, and go to nursing school, to pursue my passion for healthy living, and making an impact on people’s lives. I began my Bar Method teaching career the same week that I began my nursing career, and quickly found that working with Bar Method clients was as rewarding as working with patients (if not more). I’m so incredibly excited to work with Anna to create a Bar Method family in Darien.”

What should we know about your new Bar Method studio in Darien?

The Bar Method started right here, 15 years ago. Before opening the flagship Bar Method studio in San Francisco, Bar Method’s Founder, Burr Leonard, owned studios in Greenwich, New Canaan, Westport and Darien. We feel honored to be bringing The Bar Method back to the place where it began!

Even more, the Darien community has a passion for fitness and living well — a perfect fit for our new Bar Method family.

What were you doing before you opened a Bar Method studio?

Both Bar Method instructors before becoming studio owners, Anna notes, “I balanced teaching Bar Method classes with working as a film and TV actress in New York City.” Lara says, “I was teaching The Bar Method in the New York area, and working as an ICU nurse in the Burn Center at New York Presbyterian Hospital.”

Why did you open a Bar Method studio?

Looking back now, it feels like it was inevitable, but it took me a long time to convince myself to take this crazy journey of studio ownership,” Anna confesses. “The Bar Method changed my life from my very first class and it only felt like a natural progression to make a career out of it someday. I couldn’t be more passionate about sharing this transformative workout with everyone I meet. Now I get to make that my full time job!”

Lara shares Anna’s love of The Bar Method. “I love The Bar Method for so many reasons,” she tells us. “The incredible workout, the supportive community, and positive effect I’ve seen for five years in students of every fitness level and age group. I’m very excited to share our talent and passion with our community in Darien.”

The Bar Method, Darien, CT

Which Bar Method position is your favorite? Why?

“My favorite part of class is a long, luxurious final stretch,” Lara shares. “I love the opportunity to reconnect with my body, release any tension, and feel stronger and more flexible than when I walked into class. One of my favorite teachers, Sloan at The Bar Method Brooklyn, ended the stretch once by saying, ‘Be thankful for your strong body, and your strong will.’ I love that sentiment and think about it every time!”

Opting for seat work, Anna says, “My favorite exercise is turned out diagonal seat. I love it because it challenges me to stay 100% present for the entire exercise. I also love the fact that I’m constantly tweaking and improving my form in little ways.” She says that it’s the “perfect exercise for a perfectionist” and we couldn’t agree more.

We hope you’ll check out the Darien studio next time you are in Connecticut.  Welcome to the Bar Method family, Lara and Anna!  

A Bar Method Student’s Guide to Complex Carbohydrates

It’s no secret that carbs are a super important macronutrient and give your body heaps of energy. However, despite it’s ability to act as fuel to power you through the day, trendy diets and weight loss buzz can discourage people from consuming enough of them. Rather than cut carbs out completely, the key to maintain good energy levels while achieving your fitness and health goals is actually to find the right carbs.

You might already know there are different kinds of carbs and that that complex carbs are much better for you (especially on days that you do something active, like take a Bar Method class) than simple carbs. The outstanding problem? Even the healthiest nutrition labels don’t tell you which kind of carb you’re about to consume.  Understanding how each gets classified and what it can do for you will help you make the healthiest choices while eating all of your favorite fall foods. To get the scoop, we talked with Monica Auslander of Essence Nutrition in Miami, FL.

Carbs, explained.

Comprised from fiber, starch and sugar, carbohydrates are in tons of different foods. Starches like bread and sugar might pop into your mind first, but foods like dairy, fruits, veggies, nuts and sweets also have them.

The differentiator between the carbs in all of your favorite foods is how much fiber, starch and sugar are in each. Though sugar is a simple carb and packs less nutritional value (Pumpkin Spice Latte, anyone?), fiber and starch are present in complex carbs. This group is much more nutritious.

Carbs can be Complex. Literally.

Complex carbs have more nutrients because they’re higher in fiber, which means your body digests them at a slower rate. This helps you feel full longer, too — a key thing to note if your health and fitness goals include losing weight.

Though starch is found in some of the same foods as fiber, some are considered more starchy than fibrous (like potatoes). Corn, rice, oats, cereal and whole grain bread also rank high on the high starch lists.

With their ability to power you through a tough workout or just an ordinary day, a handful of complex carbohydrates definitely belong in your regular diet. The following are a few to consider — all of which are perfect for the coming Autumn season.

Whole grains. Excellent sources of fiber, grains are also packed with potassium, magnesium, and selenium. Whole grains such as buckwheat, and whole-wheat pasta are awesome choices and if you get tire of them, Monica swears by rye, spelt and quinoa varieties. We even found an award-winning pasta made from chickpeas. As she says, “What a time to be alive!”

Beans. In addition to lots of fiber, beans have a bevy of nutrients that include potassium, iron and folate Mix yours into a turkey chili or warm burrito bowl for a delicious, complex-carb filled meal.

High-fiber fruits. Melons might have come and gone with summer, but fiber-rich fruits like apples and bananas are still easy to snap up — and in season! Try adding almond or cashew butter to yours for a delicious high-protein snack after crushing a Bar Method class. For something super seasonal, Monica suggests making your own cranberry sauce. “Go homemade, with pectin. The reason is that Pectin is a resistant starch which is great for digestion. Cranberries have Vitamin C so some will trickle into a homemade sauce, too.”

Fiber-rich veggies. Fall is a great time to take full advantage of seasonal recipes like a sweet potato bake with delicious high-fiber veggies. Monica says, “Cook with pumpkin, even from a can! You’ll also get some Vitamin A and magnesium. Squashes are a great choice too; cook with butternut, acorn squash or even spaghetti squash.”

Have a link to a favorite fall food recipe packed with complex carbs? Share it with us in the comments.