By Alana Littler
Being a fitness fanatic and living in LA means lots of opportunities to check out new workouts. From Power Plate classes at M7 Fitness in Santa Monica to Soul Cycle spin and barre classes on every corner, I’ve tried it all. That’s why when I first heard about Xtend Barre, a brand new barre studio in WeHo, I thought twice at first. That’s until I found out all their instructors hail from the legendary Moulin Rouge Cabaret in Paris, and fans include Pussy Cat Doll Jessica Sutta and Dancing with the Stars dancers Tristan MacManus, Sasha Farber and Emma Slater. Then I heard they’d just launched a brand new Moulin Rouge-inspired “Showgirl” class. Um, sexy.
Safety First, Sexy Second
And since when it comes to fitness, my motto is safety first, I was an even more smitten kitten when I learned that every teacher is Pilates-certified. No flailing arms or alignment-ailing moves to up my heart rate. So on a sunny Sunday in Southern California, I went against one of my Westsider rules, and I did it. I DROVE EAST OF THE 405. And even though I thought I might combust as I passed the freeway, I arrived in tact at Xtend Barre West Hollywood’s sexy Melrose location, ready to get my booty kicked. It was bright, it was beautiful, and there were feather boas at each workout station. Plus an added bonus – all three instructors including owner Samantha Rabon, were gorgeous with a capital G. Me like-y.
I Think I Can-Can
I’m am a pretty tough cookie when it comes to fitness, and as long as I haven’t been out too late with my blogger friends brainstorming ideas for #cyberdomination it takes a lot to get me begging for mercy. Not this time. I was flushed and glowing (ahem, sweating bullets) in just 10 minutes with moves like “Diamonds are a Girl’s Best friend” - a diagonal arm reach, “I Think I Can-Can” - high kicks at the barre, and “Don’t Cross the ‘Chorus’ Line” – a step-ball change move with showgirl attitude. The thing about it was, even though I was working hard, the time flew by. And before I knew it, we were sashaying around the room on our way to cool down. We even got a couple sneak peeks at some real moves straight from the cabaret when our instructor, Shane Collard, came out in heels and floored us with a couple jaw-dropping struts. Who knew a guy could have gams that sexy?
The Bottom Line
For me, fitness has to = fun, and Xtend Barre was the most fun I’ve had burning that many calories in a long time. Looks like I’m going to be heading east every Sunday from here on out…maybe I’ll see you at the Barre!