Erica Mallette has always been a runner.
But an injury to a disc in her back sidelined her from the cardio activity. Looking for something low impact, the 24-year-old tried barre classes.
She’d done barre before, but she wasn’t hooked until she tried out the classes and instructors at the west Omaha location.
“This was a way to gain strength without feeling pain,” Mallette said.
The Omaha woman hits the gym four days a week, focusing mainly on strength classes until she can get back to tackling cardio.
Q: When did you start working out and why?
A: I’ve been working out (at The Barre Code West Omaha) for more than a year. They had a free week. I had tried barre at a few different places. I came to this studio, and I loved the classes and the staff.
Q: Describe your workouts. How many days per week do you exercise?
A: The workouts for a traditional barre class covers arms, abs, thighs and glutes. It’s based on small, incremental movements. We use hand weights. There’s also a cardio class that’s closer to interval training. I go four days a week, either after work or over lunch.
Q: What is your current fitness goal?
A: I want to maintain and feel body confident. It’s hard for me to go really long without working out.
Q: What has been your biggest accomplishment?
A: Being able to do a whole strength set without taking a break. I’m currently working on pushups on my toes.
Q: What helps you stay on track?
A: It’s a moment to turn off other things and just focus on myself. You’re shut off from the world. After work, it’s a nice release from a long day.
Q: What is your gym pet peeve?
A: Having to wait for other people. I like to do my workout. At other gyms, equipment you want isn’t always available.
Q: What do you do when you aren’t in the gym?
A: I hang out with friends. I like catching up with people I haven’t seen in awhile. I started swimming. I do freelance work and artsy stuff.
Q: What is the piece of equipment, supplement, clothing, etc. that you can’t live without?
A: My Apple Watch. I also learned I like to work out in leggings. Before, I had to wear running shorts. I didn’t realize I really liked leggings.
Q: What advice would you give to someone who is just starting their fitness journey?
A: Be open to trying anything new. Try it out. Especially with barre, people have notions about what it is. It’s different everywhere.
Gym-goers share what motivates them, pet peeves and their proudest accomplishments
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There's the man who's exercising as he waits for a heart transplant. Or the woman who's made Jazzercise workouts part of her life for more than 30 years.
Some workouts see moms accompanied by babies. Elsewhere you'll find folks well into their 90s who stick with exercise.
Check out their stories.