Meet MICHELLE – a real OG MISFIT who has witnessed the studio grow and evolve since the early days of the Coach House. Michelle is a QUEEN of Reformer and can usually be found teaching at our Queen Studio. Get to know Michelle and her beautiful history with the MISFITSTUDIO.
Tell us your love story with MISFIT
I first started taking classes at MISFITSTUDIO way back in 2011 at the old coach house space. (I was even at the infamous grand opening party!) I knew that what Amber was creating at the studio was different and special. I loved the vibe of the classes – the music, the un-stuffyness, (if that is a word), the irreverence, all while offering a great workout and mind-body connection. I believe I was even awarded Misfit of the month once. Obviously something really clicked for me, because two years later I decided to pursue teacher training as a Pilates instructor, and then apprenticed and then began teaching at MISFITSTUDIO in early 2014. This was all during my career in TV news, and what started as a passion grew into a pursuit – and here I am! My teaching is absolutely informed by everything I have learned at the studio over the past 7 years, both as a student and now an instructor.
What is it about teaching that lights you up?
I used to always feel a little clumsy and disconnected from my body. Almost a decade ago, when I started adding more strength training into my life and rediscovering my love of athletics, that changed and I felt so much more confident. Then, taking classes at MISFITSTUDIO and eventually becoming a teacher was a big part of that continued evolution. It was also a big part of learning to love my body and who I am. I love it when people taking my class have moments of realization where there is some kind of spark, a deeper connection between their mind and their body. If I play some small part in that, that makes me incredibly happy.
If your best friend were to describe you in three words, what would those words be?
Likes to talk.
Standout memory from your time at MISFIT?
The (in)famous grand opening party at the old coach house space is certainly one of them. As are so many of our staff gatherings – this year it was really lovely the time we all went to Anice Jewellery and made special pieces for ourselves. It was great to see everyone out of the teaching environment having fun together and being creative in other ways.
What do you do to stay grounded?
Spend time with my son and my husband. Both keep me wonderfully grounded, but in different ways. Hanging out with three year olds (my son, not my husband – ha!) has a wonderful way of changing how one looks at the world.
Where can we find you on a Sunday afternoon in the city?
Most likely at a park somewhere in the west end with my son, my husband and some friends and their kids. We’ll probably stop for coffee, lemonade or some sort of treat on the way. When I get a little time to myself – friends, patio, good food and a glass of wine is kind of ideal.
If you could go back in time and live in any era, what would it be and why?
20s for everything Art Deco, the 60s for Futurism, and the late 70s and early 80s for the music scenes (punk, hip hop, post punk/new wave).
Favourite class to teach?
Queen Street or Ossington?
That’s a tough one. Obviously Queen because that’s where I mostly teach, but I really love the space at Ossington, maybe even more. But the Queen St. reformer room is my home.
Song you have on repeat?
Right now it’s the cover of Harvest Moon by Poolside.
Who is a Woman Warrior that inspires you?
It’s hard to pick just one. Helen Mirren is pretty amazing. So let’s go with that for now.
If you could have any superpower, what would it be and why?
Time travel, because it can be applied for so many reasons.
Favourite words to live by?
Be impeccable with your word.
How do you like to start and end your day? Any go-to rituals?
Usually my son wakes me up, so that is a lovely start to the day. Coffee or tea and making him breakfast. Chatting with him and my husband. Once almost every weekend I take my son to Nadege for breakfast. We’re usually the first ones there. It started when he was a baby, so I could just read the paper and have a cappuccino and croissant and chill out. But now that he’s older we get to talk about all sorts of things, which is amazing. Other than that, I work out in the mornings – I need to get that out of the way for my day to feel right. Movement is my meditation and my medicine. I love to end my day with my family as well. Reading my son stories, snuggles, then bedtime.
I tend to skip around, but The Rewatchables, Personal Best….and High Tea has caught my interest lately. I’d love to get some more recommendations on ones I should listen to (and more time to listen).
What does being a MISFIT mean to you?
The freedom to be myself.
Come MOVE with Michelle – you can find her classes on the MISFITSTUDIO Schedule.
Photo credit: Tobias Wong