Back in August, I took myself along to a mini fitness retreat hosted by Barretribe. I’ve written about Barretribe before here. I had always wanted to try barre classes, but never did when I lived in London and then I tried it a couple of times, got scared and stopped going, but this summer, I decided that I want dot give it a go, so when Sinead, the lady who runs it, popped into my inbox announcing a mini day fitness retreat at her family’s hotel, the Bella Luce here in Guernsey, I booked myself a spot. I felt like I needed a kickstart to my fitness routine, as I had been dipping in and out of fitness for most of the summer.
I arrived bright and early and we got straight into our morning of movement by kicking the day off with some Saints Bay running circuits. Saints Bay is the location of lots of steep steps on the cliffs over looking the sea in Guernsey. As always in Guernsey, the scenery tends to help when you feeling like your legs might fall off. We did 3 circuits, running and hiking up the steps, before jogging back to the Bella Luce to refuel and relax. After a sit down and a chat with some lovely berry smoothies, infused water and raw bliss balls, we started the first of two indoor workouts.
The first was Tribe Sculpt. This is Barretribe’s signature body conditioning class fusing pilates, callisthenics, HIIT and our favourite Barre Tribe moves to challenge balance, strengthen and flexibility. It’s essentially a total body workout involving a lot of planks, plies and squats. A sweat towel is essential. I found it incredibly difficult, but doable! I noticed my strength and at one point whilst upside down with all limbs aching, I realised that I could definitely get better at this if I were to do it more often. And right there and then, I decided to sign up for more classes. I’m not sure what that says about me as a human being.
The second class was the first time that Sinead was trying out her new Stretch & Roll class, designed to “sculpt long and lean muscles, release tight fascia, realign the spine and send you into a blissful state of zen”. It is a combination of yoga, callisthenics and foam rolling, still with a barre/ballet edge, which makes everything feel very graceful, even though I may not look anywhere near as graceful as Sinead whilst doing it! I felt it though, which I guess is the main thing.
After class, we had a quick change (read: splashed water on our faces in the loos and put sweaters on) and sat down for a really yummy healthy, nourishing and delicious lunch on the hotel terrace, with recipes chosen by Sinead from Goop. It was moreish and we all ate a lot, which was totally deserved after 3 gruelling workouts, right?
As with many a Saturday afternoon in the British summer, it turned a little cold, so we actually all ended up taking our peppermint tea into the hotel’s distillery room, where they make their own gin and host gin tastings. It was warm and cosy and a relaxing end to a fun day. And the perfect way to start the weekend.