After six years of running a franchised barre studio, Lake Forest’s REBECCA ASFOUR has spread her wings to launch her own fitness concept, BIRD Barre + Cycle, with locations in Lake Forest and Vernon Hills. BIRD’s barre and cycle classes include new combinations of moves, props, and weights to strengthen and lengthen. Asfour’s approach to achieving a lean look is not just about fitness—it’s wellness as a whole, which includes creating a strong sense of community among BIRD’s membership. To achieve this, she offers community-building workshops, mindfulness seminars, and nutrition education. Asfour also heads Raleigh Bird, an online retail store, and teaches private barre classes throughout the North Shore. This busy mom is laser-focused on elevating wellness for everybody and every body, so get ready to take flight.
What’s on the horizon? More BIRD – more fun, more wellness, more joy. BIRD is more than a workout … it is a community of open-minded, positive women Mantra? You can do hard things Best grooming tip? Drink lots of water, get lots of sleep, and use sunscreen Guilty pleasure? Ice cream Favorite foods? Anything from my garden Music you love? Remixes of old songs – my playlists are full of ’80s and ’90s songs, set to modern beats Best advice ever given to you? Try to look at challenges as opportunities Best advice you’ve given? Work hard and be kind Earliest memory? Taking ballet classes as a 3-year-old When you wake up, you? Listen to a 5-minute meditation on gratitude Before bed, you? Read, mostly non-fiction, but I’m into anything by Jane Austen right now What’s on your bookshelf? The Pegan Diet by Mark Hyman and The Joy of Movement by Kelly McGonigal You can’t live without? Community. As an Air Force kid, we moved a lot, but the military is very community-oriented and close-knit. I feel like the community we’ve built at the studios and around the North Shore is similar – kind, supportive, and uplifting Love to escape to? Whistler Advice you would give to your younger self? Life is tough, but so are you
ON THE SHORE
Your style is? Workout clothes in the mornings and a sundress in the afternoons Can’t leave the house without? A big bottle of water Transportation? SUV Driving music? NPR, podcasts, or audiobooks. I love How I Built This with Guy Raz and Dare to Lead with Brené Brown Place to eat? The Deer Path Inn and Towne & Oak Shop? Raleigh Bird for athleisure and casual clothes (including dresses), Kiddles for sneakers, Lillie Alexander for jeans, Valentina for gifts, Pasquesi Home and Gardens for garden Best thing about the Shore? The kind people and the sense of community, Elawa Farm’s garden market, and the Lake Forest beach Worst thing about the Shore? The winter weather, but that’s not the North Shore’s fault The perfect day is? A barre class, a conversation over coffee with friends, and a walk through Open Lands.
IN THE CITY
Your style is? I’m definitely dressier when I’m downtown and I love wearing colorful dresses, skirts, and high heels Can’t leave the house without? My phone – to document my city adventures Transportation? Walk or Uber Driving music? I love the New Music Fridays playlist on Spotify. It’s the best way to find the newest pop music for class or car dance parties Place to eat? Aba or Boka for dinner and Sweet Mandy B’s for sweets Shop? SPACE 519 Best thing about the City? The Beluga Encounter at Shedd Aquarium is hands-down my favorite city activity. Interacting with the beluga whales in the water is magical Worst thing about the City? The crime – it’s senseless and heartbreaking The perfect day is? A stroll through a museum and an early dinner