Always wondered how those Victoria Secret Angels maintain such a fit, lean bod?
Well in this weeks addition of her of the week we are joined with the stunning Bre from Dance Barre Reformer who reveals their secret and dishes out some fab tips and tricks on how to reach your fitness goals!
Tell us a bit about her behind DB Reformer?
I'm Bre, a Brisbane Based Pilates Instructor and I absolutely love what I do!
After many years in Government, I found Pilates by pure chance. I must confess I had never been into health and fitness and was guilty of hitting the snooze button on my alarm all too often. During one of my 'new year, new me' fad diet and exercise plans I managed to drag my girlfriends along to a class we had never tried before. It was 'Pilates Matwork' - maybe this would help me stick to my exercise routine...
It wasn't long and Studio Pilates International opened their own Reformer Studio next door to my gym. I guess you could say it was this point that I became a fully fledged Pilates Addict. I fell completely in love with Reformer Pilates and the abundance of benefits I noticed and felt across my entire Body, Mind and Spirit.
As my own Pilates practice became stronger, I began to feel a need to learn more and more about the technique that had truly changed my life. I signed up to an Anatomy, Matwork and Reformer course with Studio Pilates International with the intention to start sharing my new found passion with others and to begin doing what I loved all day, every day. After completing my training I began working at 'Dance Barre by Katie Dickens' as a Pilates Instructor and well I guess you could say the rest is history.
What is the inspiration behind DB Reformer?
The biggest inspiration behind Dance Barre Reformer is most definitely Katie Dickens herself - founder and #bossbabe of 'Dance Barre by Katie Dickens'.
'Dance Barre by Katie Dickens' is all about inspiring, motivating and encouraging women to feel confident, empowered and in love with their body all via technique-focused workouts incorporating some of Katie Dickens most-loved methods - which of course included PILATES. Together, Katie Dickens and Bre felt it was only fitting that 'Dance Barre by Katie Dickens' had its own boutique Reformer Studio and well.. cue Dance Barre Reformer.
It was our intention to truly capture the energy from Katie Dickens Dance-Inspired Fitness Studio and introduce this to the Reformer Pilates world and with Dance Barre Reformer's unique 30 minute classes this inspiration definitely shines through.
What sparked your passion for reformer Pilates?
Don't laugh but the first I ever heard of 'Reformer Pilates' was during one of my girlfriends annual Victoria Secret Fashion Show viewing parties (Yes - a Victoria Secret Fashion Show party is exactly as you imagined - we all dress up as angels, often matching, feast on an array of snacks and point out our favourite set of wings on the runway and well... you didn't hear it from me, but we have been known to occasionally crop head shots of ourselves onto the bodies of Victoria Secret Angels - anyway moving on)
During the show the likes of Alessandra Ambrosio, Lily Aldrige, Adriana Lima, Candice Swanepoel will share their favourite types of workouts... so of course we can all train like a Victoria Secret Model right? RIGHT and you guessed it Reformer Pilates is up there with one of the most popular training methods for a Victoria Secret Angel. Why? Because Reformer Pilates works to sculpt, tone and reshape your body in a very unique way and the results - long, lean muscles, increased muscle strength and tone, improved flexibility and posture, dramatically flattened abs, a firmed and lifted buttocks, toned inner thighs, and defined looking arms (and obviously a set of Victoria Secret Wings).
As my girlfriends and I munched down on more chocolate covered strawberries, I thought to myself - sign me up. Then came my first ever Pilates Matwork class and eventually my obsession with Studio Pilates International Reformer Studios.
What are the benefits you find from doing Pilates regularly?
Being quite a small frame, I have always struggled with any type of strength training, especially lifting heavy weights. This was mainly due to having suffered from lower back and neck pain. It's not to say that I won't occasionally include this type of training in my regime but with regular Reformer Pilates practice I found that my technique and quality of training was drastically improved. In particular, my core strength increased ten-fold which then helped to support my lower back and neck, providing me with a healthier posture and freeing my joints to create greater flexibility and this is really what the Pilates Method is all about!
All in all... I just love being able to walk out of a Reformer Pilates class having felt like I got a really good workout, one that was painful in a 'good' way rather than leaving me feeling completely exhausted and fatigued.
Is reformer Pilates suitable for people of any age/fitness level?
Absolutely - In fact the actual origins of the Reformer came from
World War 1 where a German-Born emigre by the name of
Joseph Pilates was interning as a nurse in one of the British Enemy Citizens Camps. Some of the injured German Soldiers were too weak to get out of bed but Pilates was not willing to leave his comrades lying idle. Pilates began to pull springs from the beds and attach them to the headboards and foot boards of the iron bed frames, thus turning them into equipment that provided a type of resistance exercise for his bed ridden patients.
Obviously the Reformer has come along way since then, however whilst Reformer Pilates as we know it today is a high intensity type workout, the exercises themselves are still low impact and controlled. They have been designed to really lengthen and strengthen your muscles without creating any stress on your neck, back or joints therefore making it suitable for all ages and abilities including those recovering from any injuries.
What would you say are the most important steps to achieving your fitness goals?
1. Define your goals
I honestly believe that the most important step in achieving your fitness goal is to physically write down exactly what that goal is, be it long-term or short-term. I am 100% guilty of having thought about goals in the past but then never actually acting on them... and I put that down to not having voiced them openly to begin with, or having written them down - there was no accountability!
By writing your goals down, even just privately in your own diary, your making that commitment to yourself that you WILL reach that goal. And sure, sometimes we might fall just short of that goal but hey, at least it's there, written down in front of you so that you can continually heck in on yourself, be proud and reward yourself for what you had achieved in the process and to keep on going until you reach it!
2. Create routine
The next most important step is to create a routine for yourself. They say that it takes approximately 21 days to form a new habit and I am honestly living proof of that. When we first started DB Reformer, it was a huge shock to my system. I went from having time to train myself almost every morning or night, to instructing every morning and evening, working full-time in between, eating as healthy as possible and still trying to find time to squeeze in my own workouts along the way... but a month and a half now into our opening and I can confidently say that I am feeling more energised and ready to go than ever before - and it's this motivation and energy that I will need to keep on going.
3. Find what works for you
Do what works best for you... it will make all the difference but what I will leave you with is this little quote from the man himself - Joseph Pilates who once said that 'in 10 sessions you will feel the difference, in 20 sessions you will see the difference and in 30 sessions you will have a whole new Body and well... boy was he right! All it takes is that goal, a little commitment to the routine and motivation to succeed.. and you WILL succeed!
What's your daily ritual?
I'm up by 4am most days (unless if its a Sunday that's my sleep in until 7am - lucky me), I'll wash my face and apply my Dermalogica Active Moist Face Moisturiser combined with Dermalogica Solar Defence SPF 50+, make a quick smoothie or grab a bite to eat then I'm out the door ready for a busy morning filled with DB Reformer classes!
I actually work full-time myself outside of DB Reformer and so it's safe to say that I've become a master of the quick change act - straight from the Reformer to the Office and back with DB Reformer in the evenings. Depending on what time I make it home, my partner and I will take turns at cooking dinner - my special is Kayla Itsines Healthy Pork San Choy Bow Recipe (and trust me this beats his bangers and mash). Then it's straight into packing my bag ready for the next day, shower and plonking myself on the couch in my PJs ready for a mixture of Vanderpump Rules (currently - waiting for GOT to return though obviously), Instagram planning and most importantly snap chatting my #furbaby Ivykins.
OH and of course in between all of this - I ALWAYS make time to jump on the Reformer myself at least 3-5 times per week, even if its for just 10 minutes at a time. And on a weekend I enjoy getting up to other types of fitness activities such as climbing mountains (even though nothing around town beats Everest Base Camp).
Your top 3 must have items/products when on the go?
This is going to sound really sad but my iphone 😩 I seriously need to boycott apple!
More importantly though.. my Hairbrush (the reformer will not be kind to that perfect bun), Dermalogica Active Moist Face Moisturiser (they really do need to reconsider the name of that product though - 'moist', who thinks of that) and my new and probably favourite product - Jane Iredale Glow Time Full Coverage Mineral BB Cream... life changing.
This is way to hard though, I have so many favourites, my handbag is legit full.
DB Reformer’s Instagram page is so aesthetically beautiful, what is your top tip for creating an attractive business
Plan your feed!
There are multiple App's out there these days that will help you to plan your Instagram Feed and by doing so give yourself that necessary time and ability to ensure your feed will appear aesthetically beautiful and exactly as you desire. I personally try to plan our posts 1-2 weeks in advance, where I can, so that way I ensure that I am happy with the final appearance prior to going live (and it also helps take away the stress each day of having to create/ source content, edit and post - because we all know there are way to many filters out there to choose from).
Where do you see yourself and DB Reformer in next 5 years?
For myself the goal is to be instructing and practising Pilates all day everyday - so giving up the quick change act (bye bye
Australia's Got Talent).
For DB Reformer we really just hope that it will continue to share the countless benefits of Pilates with as many women and men as possible and ultimately change their lives as it has ours... and maybe we achieve that across two or more Studios - lets see!
Been wanting to try out reformer Pilates for a while?? Well guess what lovelies, Bre is offering readers an exclusive deal to get your started!
$20.00 off any membership packages with Dance Barre Reformer, exclusive to nourish by her readers!
Valid until 10th August 2018. To redeem click on the above link ^ and enter the discount code at checkout.
Discount code: nourishbyher
Follow Dance Barre Reformer on Instagram @dancebarrereformer