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Annie Thompson was counting down the days for Pure Barre DC to open. The Memphis native had taken Pure Barre back in her hometown, and when she got back to D.C. after her junior year abroad in 2013, she jumped right into classes at the new Dupont Circle Pure Barre studio. And her barre habit blossomed into a career: today, she's the regional manager for Pure Barre DC locations at Dupont Circle and Capitol Hill. "I've always been active," Thompson said. "Growing up, I played lacrosse, I rode horses English-style, I played tennis, and went to the gym. I've always been active and in decent shape. But I was never really strong until I started doing Pure Barre. I've seen huge changes in upper body strength, core strength, and muscle tone."
What Thompson loves about teaching Pure Barre is that anyone can do it and get a killer workout. But newbies often have the wrong idea about what barre class is. "A lot of people think it's going to be a dance class, that it will be all dancers, and they'll be the only person in class who can't do the splits," she said. "That's not the case."
"My favorite thing is that it can't be mastered. You're never going to be the best in the class, you're not going to be the strongest. What you're working toward is being your strongest and your best, and that's constantly changing," Thompson said.
Besides running, Pure Barre is all Thompson relies on to stay in shape. "It's a full body workout that gets your heart your rate up," she said. "It's very, very tiny movements but it's a really tough workout."
As for hobbies, Thompson is into cooking, especially foods from the South you can't find in D.C — like cheese grits. She loves living in D.C., even if we're not a grits-type of town. "I like that it's own place. There's such a mixture of people here and it doesn't feel like the North or the South. It's a nice place in between," she said.
What's always in your gym bag?
What's the workout jam that pumps you up?
Michael Jackson's Slave to the Rhythm, Audien Remix. I've been listening to that for three straight days.
Favorite healthy food?
Feelings on gym selfies?
They're the worst. I've never taken one. They're very entertaining to watch but kind of make me cringe.
Favorite sports team?
Athlete role model?
Pure Barre's founder Carrie Dorr. She really did build it from ground up, from a windowless basement to over 200 Pure Barre studios.
· Pure Barre DC [Official Site]
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