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Studio B Hall of Fame: Interview With Shelby

Shelby has completed over 150 classes with us in person and virtually since signing up for her first barre class a year and a half ago and was one of the lucky winners of our Be Love Challenge last month! And now that we've reopened we get to see Shelby's lovely face at the studio once again. Learn more about this ray of sunshine and why she attributes Studio B for keeping her sane during the past year!

How did you get introduced to Studio B?

My colleague, the inspiring 1,000-barre-classes-in-a-year Yvette, told me she did this workout every morning - at what I thought was the crack of dawn - and I wondered if it was worth getting up for every day. When I tried it, I realized there were so many more muscles that I hadn’t been strengthening, and that barre would improve my balance and flexibility. As a competitive person, the self-challenge was addicting.

Why do you barre and bounce?

I barre and bounce to raise the “bar” on what I can do: stretch farther, lift higher, and maybe even run faster. At first, I planned to ”fake it until I made it”, seeing if I could fail forward to learn something new by putting my uncoordinated, inflexible self alongside these strong women and dancers, but I realized no one there is already perfect. They all started somewhere, too. I’m just behind, and if you don’t start, you won’t catch up!

How has the pandemic affected you?

At first, the pandemic made me a pessimist by changing my focus to what’s wrong and what’s missing. Instead of looking forward to sports seasons or trips, I thought of what I couldn’t do that day or week. I had to stop playing team rec sports for the first time in years and I began working from home. I saw some positives, but I felt stuck. It has forced me to rethink my perspective and goals.

What made you sign up for our virtual classes when the studio shut down almost a year ago?

I was active in group fitness before the pandemic, so without it, I was lethargic and wound up without my stress-releasing activities. I applied that energy to barre and it turned out to also be a mindfulness practice! It’s easier to control your thoughts in the unfinished basement with the instructors pushing you into some complicated, burning move. It also revived my sense of community, and getting together live was such a treat.

What do you like about working out from home?

The best part about working out from home is singing along to the music! Barretenders play such great music that I can drown out the voice in my head saying, “this is too hard and I should quit,” by singing without shame. I also like how I can quickly fit in a class between meetings, which boosts my energy and gets me away from my desk. Lastly, it’s been great to share the workouts at home with my mom and be able to challenge one another in a comfortable setting.

How has continuing to workout during the pandemic impacted you?

I attribute my sanity this past year to Studio B workouts at home! These classes have been the best stress-releaser and they’ve kept me in shape, all within the same four walls. I’m so thankful to have had these classes and the cheerful, but realistic instructors to remind me to celebrate how our bodies can move and to continually try to improve.

What made you sign up for our Be Love Challenge?

Automatically, the competitor in me saw a challenge and wanted to take it on, but this one felt a little scary. That’s how I knew it would be worth it. Body positivity has always been a challenge for me, and it was even harder during the pandemic when I was less active. This challenge was a reminder to move, and to do it for the right reasons. It was much easier doing it alongside the Studio B community.

What did you learn about yourself while participating in the challenge?

I learned that I can retrain my own habits, which seemed especially daunting while I was stressed and stuck at home. Changing how I think and getting into a better routine through this challenge has been the best outcome from the pandemic, and I’m so glad I overcame the vulnerability I felt and participated.

What is your favourite Studio B class and why?

B Fusion - with both trampoline and floor work, it’s the best of both worlds! Picking a favourite barre class is like picking a favourite ice cream flavour, though. They’re all great!

What are 5 things we don’t know about you?

1. I’ll only run if there’s a ball in front of me or a bear behind me.

2. My workout buddy, a halloween decoration named Pumpkin Man, is better than me at deadlifts.

3. I like puns!

4. I love reading and last year I read over 60 books.

5. Videos of baby animals are guaranteed to make me smile.

Do you have a favourite quote you’d like to share?

“If you can’t win, start playing a different game and score just as many points.”

- Allie Brosh (artist / blogger of Hyperbole and a Half)

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