Friday, December 15, 2017

The Radar: The Bar Method’s 60-Day Challenge For Charity

Out of the corner of my eye I see two svelte-shaped people walking towards the sidewalk to The Bar Method front door, hand-in-hand and looking in love as ever. For a second I think to myself, “Is that Sean and Catherine (of ‘The Bachelor’)?” I know Catherine is one of Seattle’s Bar Method ambassadors for the upcoming 60-Day Challenge but I soon realize there’s no way she’s back from press tours yet. After all, “The Bachelor” finale just aired a few days ago and I’d think she’d be in La-La-Land to support Sean’s stint on “DWTS.”

The Bar Method/Michelle Strub

Luke, Bev and Maika of Seattle-Eastside Bar Method

Shutting my car door, I squint to focus and realize it’s actually Bev and Luke Currier, co-owners of Seattle-Eastside Bar Method along with Maika Manring. I recognize their toned and tanned physiques from 2009 when The Bar Method opened in Redmond and I was one of their first customers to get onboard their tuck train. It had been a while since I’d see either of them, having had an affair with another barre studio-who-should-not-be-named (solely because of location) for the past few years, and I was anxious as I called out to them.

“Hi, I’m coming to see you right now!” I shouted from across the way as I hurried to follow them into the window-lit studio.

“Michelle! I’d remember that smile anywhere. How have you been? Welcome back!” exclaims Bev from behind the front desk.

Bev is as beautiful as ever, but I try not to let that distract me from my nightmare memories of her calling out my name in previous classes (“Feet closer, Michelle! Tuck under, Michelle! Lift your leg higher, Michelle!”). Every time she’d call my name it felt like I was in trouble. And boy, did I get in a lot of trouble back then. I think she sees the fear on my face because she reminds me, “It’s all out of love, love!”

“It’s been a while! A year and half, to be exact, since you last came. Where have you been?” says Luke, who just turned the big 4-0 the day before, though you’d never guess he was a day over 30.

Clients start filtering in for the next class (in which I’ll be attending) so I put my stuff in a locker and we head to the empty studio in the back of the facility to catch up beforehand. We’re in the South Lake Union location which is massive in comparison to their original location in Redmond. South Lake Union has two studios — both of which have windows to the sidewalk so that yes, clients can be judged on by passersby — in addition to a locker room with showers. I’m in awe of what they’ve managed to build for themselves.

Maika joins us and we get to talking about what they’ve all been up to since I last saw them. “Bev and Luke, you’re going to Miami? Maika, you’re getting ready to go to Rio? Much-deserved vacations, I’m sure!”

Seattle-Eastside Bar Method

“Bachelor” alumna Lindzi Cox at The Bar Method Seattle studio

We also start to talk about all of their appearances on local TV stations, including a re-occuring feature, “Workout Wednesdays,” on Q13 Mornings as well as their upcoming visit to New Day Northwest. And of course, the fact that recent “Bachelor” winner Catherine Giudici and past “Bachelor” alumna Lindzi Cox as well as many other local celebs — like other 60-Day Challenge ambassador, Team USA Olympic Swimmer Ariana Kukors — are Bar Method devotees.

But despite all of their success, they remain humble and, as Luke is sure to address, community is at the heart of what they do and why they continue to host the 60-Day Challenge every year in honor of the Ben Towne Foundation, a local organization focused on pediatric cancer research. This notion of community is palpably obvious the second you walk into either location. Even now, Bev and Maika continue to each teach several classes a day and make it their mission to greet all of their clients before class and memorize faces and names — within minutes of meeting. The other instructors they’ve hired to fill in are no different and have undergone a rigorous 6-month training program ensuring they are as passionate about the values of The Bar Method and what it means in the Seattle community as well.

Class is about to get underway so I thank all of them for the catch-up and head back to the other studio which is now full of women and men in their Lululemon uniforms waiting for the tuck to start — including two of my friends who happen to be twins (and yet Bev is able to distinguish them with ease). While I’m not new to barre, I still struggle through the class, all the while Bev is calling out my name, “Michelle! You’re still smiling which means you need to tuck it up more!” — out of love, of course.

More about The Bar Method’s 60-Day Challenge beginning APRIL 1:

THE WHOS

Who is involved? You! And The Bar Method! Plus local celebs, Bar devotees and 60-Day Challenge supporters, “Bachelor” alumnae Catherine Giudici and Lindzi Cox and Team USA Olympic swimmer Ariana Kukors.

THE WHATS:

What does the Challenge involve? Commit to taking Bar Method a minimum of three days per week during the months of April and May. Bar Method will donate $10 on behalf of each person who completes 24+ classes and $20 on behalf of each person who completes 48+ classes to Ben Towne Foundation.

What do you get for doing the Challenge (besides the fact you’re “donating” to an incredible cause — last year Bar donated $4,150 on behalf of its clients to the foundation)? Other potential prizes include:

  • Activewear from Prima Studios, Lululemon, Lucy, Zella and Athleta
  • 90-minute wardrobe styling session with fashion expert Darcy Camden
  • Nutrition consultation with Certified Nutritionist Deborah Enos
  • Customized facial from Esthetician Reini Greene
  • Blowout and makeup session at Swink Style Bar
  • Cut and color from Coupe Rokei
  • Manicure and pedicure from Julep
  • Spray tanning from Seattle Sun Tan
  • Massage from Vida Spa
  • FREE Bar Swag Bags and FREE month of unlimited Bar classes

THE WHENS

Apr. 1, 2013 — The Bar Method will host a kick-off party at its South Lake Union location from 6:30 p.m. – 7:45 p.m.

Apr. 1, 2013 – May 31, 2013 — 60-Day Challenge; class times vary

Jun. 8, 2013 — 60-Day Challenge finale party! Details TBD

THE WHERES

The Bar Method Seattle | South Lake Union | 124 Westlake Avenue N, Seattle | (206) 467-5249

The Bar Method Eastside | Redmond Town Center | 7551 166th Avenue NE, #D24, Redmond | (425) 556-5163

THE WHYS

Why should you do the 60-Day Challenge? Well why not? You have nothing to lose — except for that extra weight you’ve been dying to “tuck off” in time for swimsuit season. Plus it’s for a charitable cause and you might even get to get your tuck on next to some local celebrities while being entered for some awesome prizes.

For more information on Seattle-Eastside Bar Method, visit their Facebook page here or their website here.

About Michelle Strub

As a Seattleite since one month after birth Michelle is, naturally, a graduate of the University of Washington with a B.A. in Communications. She also has her M.B.A. from somewhere that doesn’t matter since it’s not in Seattle. If inquiring minds really want to know, Texas A&M. Michelle previously worked in the fashion industry but now finds her day job is getting paid to watch TV. When she’s not otherwise out for a run she’s exploring the city and all its rain-drenched nooks and crannies while wearing her North Face fleece. Just joking about that last part. Michelle doesn’t own any fleece. Strike up a conversation with her on Twitter @michellestrub.
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