Full of grace

Just did Ellen Barrett’s new workout, “Grace+Gusto.”  As always, she’s full of grace, and as always, she made me feel graceful, too. I venture to bet she can do the same for you, even if you’re out of shape and it takes you a time or two to get there.

I’ve been working out with Ellen through various DVDs for more than a decade. She’s had at least 17 years in the biz, but we met in person about 10 years ago, and I can tell you she’s one of the genuinely nicest people you can ever hope to meet. Mutual friend Melissa McNeese introduced us.

She rode a train from Connecticut to Manhattan just to meet some of my newspaper staff students a few years ago – when Connecticut was covered in deep snow and the weather was less than pleasant. But that’s the kind of person she is.

So I have a vested interest in her success, in full disclosure. I like her a lot. But if I didn’t totally trust her with my own partially broken-down 50+ bod, I wouldn’t unhesitatingly recommend her workouts to baby boomers (and their moms, for that matter). But I do, and I do.

Ellen’s a real person, down-to-earth and sensible, and this workout is shot in real time, with no breaks for touchups, and with real people in assorted shapes working out with her (that’s a standard EB touch). If there’s something you can’t do, follow the modifier or adapt on your own.

(My eternally ouchy damaged rotator cuffs require constant adaptation, for example. The grandbaby challenge keeps them on the edge, so I modify like mad on most days.)

She’s all about functional fitness – it’s nice to look good, but it’s better to be able to keep your balance and lift yourself up if you happen to fall, as Ellen points out during the triceps dips. She also talks about the benefits of aging, which is a happy bonus for us older gals.

But the best thing about Ellen for me is how happy I feel during her workouts. I can be a grumpy granny when I start, but by the end – no, by the beginning, actually – I’m a let-it-be Lolly.

Just had to share my endorphin high. You might want to get this workout, especially if you’re a resolutioner.

Carry on.


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