From rice bags to skate­boards, Monika Sch­narre tries a work­out regime any­one can do any­where, any­time

A work­out that leaves no room for ex­cuses

Richmond Hill Post - - Table of Contents - MONIKA SCH­NARRE Monika Sch­narre is a model, ac­tress, en­tre­pre­neur and tele­vi­sion per­son­al­ity. She has ap­peared in over 50 tele­vi­sion shows and films and on over 100 mag­a­zine cov­ers.

An­chored So­cial Club is lo­cated in a cool, in­dus­trial space. Af­ter eye­ing the rice bags, skate­boards and rings, I know this is not go­ing to be a typ­i­cal work­out.

Owner Ben Dus­sault ma­nip­u­lates my body into po­si­tions it has never been in be­fore and of­ten there is a squash ball in the most un­com­fort­able of places (like my un­der­arm or my hip). He then asks, “Does that suck?” “Yes,” I re­spond. “Good. It should suck,” he says mat­ter of factly.

Que­bec-born Dus­sault is a mu­si­cian. While tour­ing, he came up with a tech­nique us­ing what­ever he could find — peo­ple, equip­ment, fur­ni­ture and per­sonal body weight — to ex­er­cise, be­cause he never knew what fa­cil­i­ties would be avail­able.

“It didn’t mat­ter what kind of ex­cuses I came up with. There was a work­out wait­ing to hap­pen any­where I was,” Dus­sault says.

The work­out he is tak­ing me through is the se­cond phase. Usu­ally on the ini­tial one-hour visit, he prefers to do a com­plete phys­i­cal as­sess­ment; rec­og­niz­ing your strengths, weak­nesses and in­juries.

The se­cond phase is gen­er­ally 30 min­utes and is there to see if you’ve been prac­tic­ing and do­ing your home­work from the ini­tial visit, and to mon­i­tor if changes have oc­curred.

To­day’s ses­sion is a com­bi­na­tion of FMS (Func­tional Move­ment Sys­tems) and FRC (Func­tional Range Con­di­tion­ing) as well as what he calls the most im­por­tant parts of work­ing with the hu­man body: “Cre­ativ­ity, pas­sion, trust, in­tu­ition, play and pa­tience.”

Dus­sault has me bal­anc­ing on a skate­board, box­ing with an ex­er­cise ball and lift­ing a wooden plank that he is bal­anc­ing on.

The classes typ­i­cally have six to eight peo­ple in them. He says small groups al­low for each per­son to take away a bit of self-knowl­edge and get some solid at­ten­tion.

Big­ger groups hap­pen on Satur­days, when the fo­cus is on fun and con­nec­tion with oth­ers. Monthly mem­ber­ships are $70.

“We treat the work­out as a step­ping stone to the next phase and avoid push­ing in­di­vid­u­als to the point of com­plete fail­ure,” he says.

The pro­gram is com­pletely based on the in­di­vid­ual, no cookie-cut­ter work­outs. Dus­sault trains a client who surf­boards pro­fes­sion­ally, and his work­out in­volves a lot of cor­rec­tive and strength­en­ing work.

They have a di­verse group of clients and Dus­sault main­tains that this style of ex­er­cise is suit­able for any­one aim­ing to be health­ier.

“I like the idea of peo­ple be­com­ing more pa­tient with them­selves and life, lov­ing them­selves a lit­tle more and com­par­ing them­selves to oth­ers less. Love more, com­pare less,” he says.

Dus­sault is mo­ti­vated to keep work­outs very real, raw, chal­leng­ing and fun.

My body five days later still feels the ef­fects of the work­out (in a good way), es­pe­cially the range of mo­tion in my arms as they had be­come stiff car­ry­ing around my 40-pound tod­dler, Bode, ev­ery day. This ex­pe­ri­ence changed me and the way I look at work­outs. No more ex­cuses.

Monika does squats with a rice bag STU­DIO: An­chored So­cial Club AD­DRESS: 899 Queen St. E., #2 PRICE: $90 for ini­tial two-part ses­sion

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