This was quite the year: by facing some of my biggest fears and insecurities, I'm in a completely differently headspace than just 365 days ago.
And I realized this photo captures my year in three little ways:
1. You can see my teeth
2. I'm not hiding my squishy bits
3. I'm combining my day job and my side hustle
Photo by John Arano
Here's how I got there:
1. seeing a dentist after 10+ years
In 2018 I conquered my decades-long fear of the dentist. Last New Years Day I thought I'd cracked a tooth, so I gathered all my courage and I walked into Le Cabinet Dental in Westboro, a practice that came highly recommended from many of you.. I was terrified -- even nauseous. And I could never have imagined how different I'd feel after that appointment.
Discovering Dr. Guberman's team at Le Cabinet Dental and Dr. Arora's team at DocBraces Orthodontics has completely changed my self-esteem. Both have been so welcoming and completely non-judgemental about the state of my teeth. I'm proud to say that years of tartar and staining are gone, my teeth and gums are now healthy, and my Invisalign journey is well underway. I have a check-up at DocBraces on Monday so I'll let you know how it goes.
My teeth are a work in progress but already I've noticed I no longer hide them when I talk, and sometimes I even show them when I smile. It feels so good.
Photo by John Arano 2. i ditched the bathroom scale
For the first time in my life, I chose to focus on my physical strength instead of my size or weight. For someone who's struggled with body image and disordered eating since forever, this was a big deal. I ditched my bathroom scale and the trendy diets that always failed me in the long run.
I was eager to try personal training at Iron North Studio since I already loved their community. I paired up with Jenna Ladd, studio owner and personal trainer extraordinaire. I mentioned I was curious about powerlifting and olympic lifting, and wanted to see what I could do. We also talked openly about my history of disordered eating, and my fears of potentially replacing anorexia with orthorexia or obsessive working out.
Every week since then Jenna's been building a stronger me, both physically and mentally. I've smashed goals I never thought possible: I have a 225lb deadlift, 180lb squat, and a 120lb clean. This lifting newbie is pretty proud of herself and may even enter a powerlifting competition in 2019.
Now, if I still had that bathroom scale it might actually tell me I'm heavier. But that's cool, I've gained loads of muscle and I feel great. Having (or not having) rolls, a double chin, or fleshy arms doesn’t mean you’re not strong AF.
Photo by Hello Lovely Studio
3. combining my two jobs
In this photo, just like the very first one, I'm at the National Arts Centre (my day job) doing a shoot on my lunch break (for my night job) with the talented John Arano who I met through LVD Fitness (awesome local brand). I’m continually inspired by my NAC team and by how enthusiastically they support my side hustle. By how open they are to having those two worlds overlap when it makes sense.
Case in point: John shoots all of LVD's clothing launches and campaigns, so when the NAC was debuting stylish new uniforms for our ushers, I suggested he'd be a great fit for our shoot. My NAC team agreed so I invited John in to check out our bright new space. And he loved it. He's now shot several LVD looks in and around the NAC, and he frigging knocked it out of the park when he captured our NAC ushers in their stylish new Canadian threads.
Nothing makes me happier than when I can help connect two businesses who otherwise may not have met. YAS.
Photo by John Arano
Enough about me, how was your 2018? Did you start a new biz? Travel? Face a fear? Learn something new? Close a chapter? I'd love to hear what you've been up to and what you've got planned for 2019. Happy new year!
Photo by John Arano