A couple of weeks ago I posted about a few companies doing pretty cool things for Breast Cancer Awareness month. New Balance was one of the companies I featured after they launched their Lace Up 365 program to mark the 25th anniversary of their partnership with Susan G. Komen. The Lace Up 365 page provides tips dedicated to staying fit and healthy, highlights a different breast cancer survivor each day, and encourages everyone to dedicate their daily workouts to survivors by using the #LaceUp365 hashtag.

Lace Up 365

As part of the program kick-off, New Balance reserved spaces in four different fitness programs around Boston during the month of November. I was psyched when I was offered the opportunity to join them, and I was even more psyched when one of the charity classes I could choose from was Barry’s Bootcamp. My friend Christina recently started instructing there, and several of my gym friends have been going to her classes. I’ve heard nothing but good things about how the workout kicks your ass and is one of the hardest fitness classes in the city.

Barry's Bootcamp

The class was formatted as such:

  • Line of treadmills across the back of the room
  • Line of weight stations (bench, mat, weights) across the front of the room
  • Class participants divide into two groups: half on treadmill, half at weight stations

I imagine this changes depending on the class or instructor, but last week each group did two 15 minute treadmill rounds and two 15 minute strength rounds. From an instructor perspective, I was impressed at Dustin’s ability to instruct both groups at the same time. He never missed a beat telling the “tredders” to up their incline or the strength group to switch to a new exercise, and the timing of it all was very precise/planned.

Barry's Bootcamp

This particular class was chest/back/abs oriented, so our strength focused around pushing our upper body endurance. We did countless pushups, rows, chest presses, sit-ups, and more. My favorite two strength takeaways were v-sit shoulder presses and plank pull ins done by flipping the tops of the steps over and using our towels as gliders. Both were killer!

Barry's Bootcamp

The treadmill part of class was definitely more difficult for me though. Since crazy bootcamp/muscle/interval classes are my thing, I felt in my element during that part. I was able to keep up with everyone else while still pushing myself. But the running! I know I’ve been running more recently, but umm NOT at a 15% incline! The first treadmill set focused on hill work, while the second set focused on speed. And the lightest “jog” recommended was a 5.0 mph pace. Really intense!

Barry's Bootcamp

A couple other highlights included really cool lighting and a live DJ, but more exciting to me was the chance to hear three different breast cancer survivors share their stories before class began. Even though we only had about ten minutes, their words and positive outlooks were so inspiring. And after hearing from them, Dustin had us each think of someone we wanted to dedicate our workout to before class began. In the middle of it, when that 15% incline felt flat-out awful, he reminded us to think about that person and their family. I thought about my friend Erica and her mom, and all of a sudden that last minute didn’t feel so bad. I thought about the words the survivors shared before class, and I felt a surge to go faster and finish stronger. THAT was an amazing feeling, and I’m sure my fellow classmates would agree.

Barry's Bootcamp

Finally, I was pumped to finally meet some fellow Boston bloggers. Here we are, standing next to the three breast cancer survivors, and decked out in our pink Lace Up for the Cure Collection gear.

Barry's Bootcamp

Caroline, Stephanie, and I have followed each other for a bit now, so it was great to finally put some faces to the blog names.

Barry's Bootcamp[Photo cred]

All in all, it was a great night. Thank you to New Balance and Barry’s Bootcamp for making it possible!

Have you ever taken a class at Barry’s before? Are you going to start dedicating your workouts using the #LaceUp365 hashtag?

Disclaimer: I was not paid to write this post, but I was provided free New Balance apparel and a free class at Barry’s Bootcamp in exchange for writing this review. All thoughts and opinions are my own.