April 22, 2021

    This Spring Fever Total Body Barre Workout can be done anywhere you have a ledge or some support for balance. You’ll need a mat, light hand weights (Suzanne is using 2 pounds) and a stopwatch or stopwatch app on your smartphone.

    This post was originally live on FitFluential but I brought it back here because 1) when I was in my reverse diet the past 10 months and was not allowed to do cardio or crazy intense training– I started doing barre workouts again and remembered how much I LOVE THEM and 2) Suzanne Bowen creates KILLER WORKOUTS- I strongly recommend checking out her DVDS and online streaming. She will have you begging for mercy while you chisel your entire body!

    Total Body Barre Workout

    Warm up for five minutes before beginning this routine.

    Total Body Barre Workout

    Holding onto something sturdy for balance with light weight in the left hand, extend left leg forward keeping right knee soft and hips square. Take left arm straight back behind rib cage as you feel triceps contract. This is the start move.

    Total Body Barre Workout

    On inhale, hinge at the hips, bend left leg and move torso to face down as you reach left leg back straight, left arm forward. Exhale and return to start move. Do this one minute.

    Make it easier: Decrease range of motion, hand weight size, or duration.

    Make it harder: Increase to 90 seconds and with each move pause and pulse arm and leg 10 times.

    Troubleshoot: Don’t lock out the standing knee. Make sure the leg that is moving is straight. When you hinge to move the leg back behind, bend knee and then press it back.

    Works: Quads, Hamstrings, Glutes, Shoulders and Triceps.

    Total Body Barre Workout

    From the last rep of Up and Back above, hold that hinge. Bend elbow and face palm to the back keeping arm in line with shoulder. Bend left knee and point toes. Lift right heel. Pulse left knee and elbow up in small tiny moves for one minute.

    Make it easier: Drop right heel down, drop off weight and stay more upright.

    Make it harder: Hinge more parallel to the floor, dip down a little lower in right knee, and increase duration to 90 seconds.

    Troubleshoot: Keep hips square, right knee soft, and core tight so you don’t move lower back at all.

    Works: Glutes, Hamstrings, Calves, Rear Deltoid, Lower Back.

    Total Body Barre Workout

    Holding support with right hand and weight in left arm which is down in front of hips, step out into a wide plié position and raise heels up.

    Total Body Barre Workout

    Stand up keeping heels up and raise left arm to shoulder height. Move down and up slowly within this full range of motion. Repeat this for 60 seconds.

    Make it easier: Keep heels down, decrease duration.

    Make it harder: At the end of the 60 seconds, keep arm lifted, bend knees to lowest point, and pulse for 30 more seconds.

    Troubleshoot: Make sure knees and feet are tracking by making sure not to turn feet out too much. With heels up, make sure the weight is on the big and second toes and less on the pinky toes. Keep heels below knees.

    Works: Quads, Inner Thighs, Calves, and Middle Deltoids.

    Turn around and repeat the first three exercises on the other side.

    Total Body Barre Workout

    On mat, bring hands below shoulders and knees underneath hips. Place weight behind the front knee securing it so it doesn’t fall out. Tuck back toes under and lift knee off mat as you raise front shape of leg up. Keep core tight and pulse front leg up for 60 seconds.

    Make it easier: Keep back knee down on the mat and/or do not use weight behind the knee.

    Make it harder: Move front knee in a full range of motion (all the way down and all the way back up) for 30 seconds then pulse at the top for 30 seconds.

    Works: Shoulders, Arms, Chest, Glutes, Hamstrings, Quads, Abs, and Lower Back.

    Troubleshoot: Keep everything in the upper body lifted and engaged. Do not let neck or lower back sag. Core should be lifted so movement is not in the lower back but in the leg lifting.

    Repeat on the other side.

    Total Body Barre Workout

    Lie face up on mat, draw legs up keeping them as straight as possible and feel abs lift. Raise shoulder carriage and keep head in line with spine, gaze up and ahead. Inhale. On exhale, lower front leg down and back leg to chest keeping legs straight. Inhale and on exhale change legs. Repeat for one minute.

    Make it easier: Lower shoulder carriage and head down to the mat. Keep knees soft or slightly bent and decrease range of motion of the legs.

    Make it harder: Speed up the leg motions while maintaining control and stability through the core.

    Troubleshoot: This move requires flexibility in the hamstrings (i.e. back of the legs) and it also requires strength in the abdominal muscles. If you feel strain in your neck, try pulling in the abs more. If your neck is still straining, lower head and shoulders down to the mat but stay very connected to your core. Once you build the strength, attempt to lift the upper torso and head back up. Also, try not to tuck chin to chest but instead keep head in line with spine.

    Works: Abdominal Wall, and Hip Flexors. Stretches Hamstrings.

    Total Body Barre Workout

    Lying face up on mat, bring knees together and feet apart keeping feet close to hips. Lift heels. Holding hand weights bring arms straight above chest with palms facing knees. Inhale.

    Total Body Barre Workout

    On exhale, press hips up and lower arms down to the sides of shoulders. Inhale as you lower hips and lift arms. Repeat this move for one minute.

    Make it easier: Rather than creating the mermaid shape with legs, keep legs parallel and hips distance and keep heels down.

    Make it harder: At the end of the minute, keep hips up and lower and lift the arms for an additional 3o seconds.

    Troubleshoot: It’s tempting to lift the lower body so high that the upper back begins to leave the mat. Avoid this by keeping upper back in contact with the mat. While it will move some, you don’t want to have the pressure on your neck. Also, when you’re lifting your heels to create the mermaid shape, make sure not to turn your ankles out too much. In barre exercises, always consider alignment.

    Works: Chest, Lower Back, Inner Thighs and Glutes.

    If you love this workout check out Suzanne Bowen Fitness where I offer over 200 workouts including barre, interval, mat and stretching as well as custom workout plans, fitness challenges and a food guide to help you achieve all of your goals!

    My Favorite Suzanne DVDS:

    1. The Barre Amped Total Body Set (NEW) CLICK HERE
    2. Barre Amped Bootcamp CLICK HERE
    3. Barre Amped Cardio Fat Burn CLICK HERE
    4. Barre Amped Fire Extreme Sculpt CLICK HERE
    5. Barre Amped CLICK HERE

    About Suzanne Bowen

    (From her online bio) Suzanne Bowen put 16 years of heart, soul, and sweat into creating Suzanne Bowen Fitness (SBF), a compilation of all the training she received, and given, over the years. Her mission is to help you build a foundation from which you can become not perfect, but your best, every day.

    I used to be obsessed with being thin. I chased perfection. If I ate something I wasn’t supposed to, I had to run to the gym to burn off the calories.”

    SBF is a simple formula that brings the form, focus, and precision Suzanne learned from the Lotte Berk Method into a balanced, full-body workout encompassing strength, cardio & flexibility.

    Suzanne At-a-Glance
    Suzanne is the creator of BarreAmped, an internationally taught barre technique recognized as one of the best by Fitness Magazine and Natural Health Magazine
    Suzanne is also the creator of numerous top-selling fitness DVDs and online streaming barre and cardio classes
    Suzanne does extensive training with posture and prenatal specialists, including her friend, Julie Wiebe, PT, to stay up to date on the latest scientific data as it relates to fitness

    When I got married, I thought I had to be perfect for my husband to love me. Once I figured out he loved me for who I was, faults and all, it was a step toward freedom.”

    “Your best, not perfection.”
    Too many women say, “If I lose 30 pounds, I’ll wear that dress!” or “If I lose 5 pounds, I can find a boyfriend.” I used to be one of them!

    SBF is for women who want to be excellent, but don’t want to get stuck on that endless treadmill chasing perfection.

    When I got pregnant with our first child, I lost the body I had worked so hard on. Having children gave me incredible freedom and that’s when I learned life really is about pursuing authenticity, not perfection.”

    No matter where you are physically, the SBF method pushes each person individually. I have workouts ranging from 10 mins to over an hour, so there’s an effective workout for everyone! I want SBF to meet people where they are. It’s not always easy to get to the gym. Whether it’s on your iPhone, iPad or in your living room, I want SBF to be there to help you become your best you on your schedule and on your budget!

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  • Want to know how to GET TONED? Learn how to lift weights the right way for the BEST results.

    No, lifting heavy weights WON’T “bulk you up”- and other myths about strength training.

    If you are losing weight and want to know how to get toned, you are in the right place. This post and podcast is all about how to get toned, the right way. Because there is a right and wrong way to go about getting toned muscles, believe me.

    Most women think they know how to get toned and that it involves a lot of reps of light weights. They also incorrectly assume that lifting heavy weights will cause them to “bulk up” unnecessarily. Not true. A combo of the two is actually ideal to help get toned muscles. 

    In today’s episode I talk about the importance of strength training for women- all women. I recorded this show because I still hear so many women saying things like “I’m worried I’ll bulk up if I lift heavy weights” or women who just keep adding more cardio hoping to achieve an ideal “toned” body– and what they don’t know is – the #1 most important thing to achieve that “Toned” look is weight-lifting. Tune in to learn more about why this is SO IMPORTANT. 

    Some of the shows you may want to check out, based on what we talked about in this series — 1) My interview with my trainer, Alex Mazurrco CLICK HERE. 2) Laurie Christine King Interview CLICK HERE. 3) My latest bloodwork and the changes I’m making because of it. CLICK HERE. 4) If you’d like to get YOUR BLOODWORK done– check out Ulta Lab Tests, available in 2100 locations across the U.S. GET YOUR HORMONAL LAB WORK DONE LADIES!!! CLICK HERE.

    Are you loving The Kelly O Show Podcast?

    Did you enjoy this episode? If so, head on over to our show on itunes (CLICK HERE) and I would so LOVE IT if you’d not only SUBSCRIBE but leave us a review! Reviews help this show get seen and heard by more folks who could benefit from the free information we take the time to produce for you. THANK YOU in advance!! If you have any questions, leave them in the comments below or fill out the Contact Me form. You can also use that Contact Me form to inquire about advertising opportunities on the show or if you’d like to recommend a guest for an interview in the future!


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  • How (and why) To Track Macros For Weight Loss.

    Why lasting weight loss depends on tracking your macros effectively.

    If you have been trying to lose weight for a LONG time and have not been seeing results, it’s time to embrace the fact that the missing link could be you tracking your macros. 

    Don’t worry, if this is your first time diving into learning about how to track your macros to lose weight, I’ve got you. I will do my best to explain why you need to track your macros if you want to bust that plateau and lose some weight, and how to start figuring out your best macros for weight loss, and then I’ll share some recommended resources for getting you started. 

    NOTE: I am not a dietitian, a nutritionist, a doctor, a trainer or anything other than a certified fitness fanatic. Everything I’ve learned about fitness and nutrition and such I’ve learned from the experts who I will quote and reference here but I must disclose, I’m NOT that practitioner. I’m just a regular gal like you tryin to get my fit on. 

    How does counting macros help with weight loss?

    I’m NOT writing this post from a scientific standpoint – there’s no need on this to go do research on statistics. I’m sharing with you from my own personal experience in this case because the truth is, I think most of you reading this want to hear from someone who has struggled just like you with losing weight, and came to see success in finally being able to lose weight by counting macros more closely.

    So – here’s the deal. 

    There are plenty of trainers/doctors/dietitians/nutritionists etc. out there who will argue that “calories count” is a line of bull. These folks claim that if you eat clean or eat Paleo or eat organic or simply avoid packaged food, you will naturally be full and eat to satisfaction  — intuitively- and you’ll naturally fall into a state of optimal weight. 

    NEWS FLASH: Winging it with nutrition works for no one.

    YEA I call NO on that one. My doctor, Dr. Lane Sebring, who is known as “The Paleo Doctor” does NOT drink bulletproof coffee. Yea. He’s like MR. Paleo and he doesn’t chug bulletproof coffee for breakfast. He typically eats 1-2 meals a day and practices intermittent fasting. HINT: If you haven’t picked up on it yet, this means he isn’t eating a ton of calories. He eats clean, organic, grass fed, pasture raised, home-grown…you get the idea, but he watches HOW MUCH HE EATS. When I first went to see him and was struggling to lose a pound, and this IDIOT I was being advised by was telling me to consume bulletproof coffee with 2 egg yolks in it plus 4 scrambled eggs and avocado for breakfast plus 2 full meals for lunch and dinner and almond butter in between…..(that’s a whole other story I’ll tell you later on the topic of “How to Spot a Lying Gangster Con Artist Before He/She Robs You Blind”)- Dr. Sebring told me “Calories count. The amount of food we eat matters. There IS a tie between energy taken in and energy expended. Period.”

    Conclusion: You have to track your macros if you want to lose weight. Period.

    Ok, so while you will find people out there spouting off about “just eat clean and you’ll be fine!” or “you can eat all the fruits and vegetables you want, you don’t have to track that!”– don’t listen. Start listening to reason. Start using common sense. There has to be a balance of how much you eat and how much you burn off. If you eat too much and don’t move enough, you’ll be in a surplus mode. 

    You must start paying attention to your macros and tracking those macros on the daily if you want to see the weight loss happen! TRUST ME!! You can become that person who gets very familiar with nutrition and calorie counts and what foods are good for you and what are “not ideal” for you- and you CAN get too comfortable and you CAN get to the point where you THINK you are eating on point but– you really aren’t. Some of the simplest things could be throwing your macros way off and making you either gain weight or not be able to lose it:

    • Start adding an afternoon Iced Coffee at Starbucks: (Coconut Milk, Venti) – 160 calories 33g carbs — 800 extra calories a week or 3200 extra calories a month, that’s about 1lb possible weight GAIN per month or 12lbs per year. FROM ADDING A STARBUCKS ICED COFFEE. 
    • Add a banana with your morning coffee each morning, because you want to choose something healthy. Then you start having salad at lunch but don’t check the nutrition info for the salad dressing– if you eat out, salad dressing can easily be a LOT higher in FAT than you think- one popular Panera salad has only 650 calories but 33g of FAT. With just adding these two things, you added 80g of carbs and 33g of fat. —> Many macro plans may call for a max of 60-70g of fat a day, so if you use up 33 at lunch, it’s easy to blow it the rest of the day. Same thing with carbs- if you add fruit then a huge salad and maybe your macros are set at 90 on a lower-carb day– after your breakfast coffee with a banana and a Panera salad–you are getting up there. 
    • NOTE: Neither of these examples are BAD – I’m not saying these are bad choices at all. It’s only making the point that if you don’t TRACK your macros, you could think you were “eating healthy” and you are…but you can still be eating too much or too unbalanced- too high in carbs or fat and not enough protein. 
    • Make sense?

    How to get started figuring out your macros for weight loss.

    Now that you understand this concept of needing to count macros daily in order to reach your fat loss goals, let’s get you moving in the right direction. There are SO MANY resources out there to help you in getting started on finding what macros are ideal for you. 

    I will share that I bought this eBook by Sohee Fit YEARS ago and it really taught me the concept of macros– you can find several great eBooks for under $50, many under $25 by CLICKING HERE. She’s fantastic- follow her on instagram she’s a wealth of information. Secondly, let’s be real- MyFitnessPal the app can absolutely spit out some macros for you as a baseline = with your input on age/height/weight and desired weight loss. MyFitnessPal is what I use to track macros on the daily and I love it. The paid version is not expensive and is so worth it.

    You’ve also heard me rave about Chris and Heidi Powell’s Transformation App- now by no means is this strictly an app for food tracking but it does create not only a customized macro program with suggested meals on the daily and/or shopping lists for meal substitutions, it also includes killer weight training workouts that have blown my mind. It’s my new favorite thing ever and at $15/month you cannot go wrong. CLICK HERE to check it out. 

    The bottom line is this- it might sound cumbersome to start the practice of recording all your meals into an app or a handwritten journal. But on the other hand, think about how much you hate not being able to fit into your favorite dress or skinny jeans. Is the few minutes per meal to record your macros so you get on track and get balanced and eat within a reasonable caloric window WORTH IT if you can get to your weight loss goal, finally?? For me the answer is a solid hell yes. 

    Tell me what YOU THINK? What questions didn’t I address about counting macros for weight loss? Let me know in the comments below– and if this post helped you, I’d love it if you shared with your friends who are still confused by macros and stuck with weight loss! 

    Be sure to SUBSCRIBE to my newsletter– cool stuff coming up y’all!! 😉