RIDE OR DIE | SHIRA, INSTRUCTOR
Get to know Shira – a Toronto and RIDE EXT Instructor with a personality to match her hair – fun and energetic! You can expect to leave her class with a song stuck in your head and a smile on your face.
Where did you grow up?
Can you remember your first RIDE class?
Crystal clear, my friend took me for a trial class of this new underground place called RIDE. You would enter through a vacant store on Ossington guided by a path of candles. I had no idea what to think. I was seated bike 56 (backy back) and Ashley was the instructor (whoah). I remember thinking WTF did I get myself into? I could barely keep up, not to mention was 7 months pregnant at the time. Her intensity both in form and voice scared the crap out of me. Something about that experience though made me crave going back. Saturday mornings with Cat have been a ritual since then.
How long did it take until you realized you wanted to become an Instructor?
We all know the learning curve to perfecting that form takes a while. Learning to keep the beat, and not wanting to throw up after 15-minutes took me a while. I’d say during maternity leave RIDE became a very special place for me not only physically but mentally. It became my safe and happy place. It was then I knew I wanted to share that same feeling back with everyone else. True story, I auditioned twice and was gutted when I didn’t make the cut the first time. It took me all year to muster up the courage to audition a second time before becoming an instructor and the reward was better than I could have imagined. Never, ever give up!
Describe your teaching style.
My style is so driven by mood. Part of why RIDE is so special is the emotional connection you get from hearing a song that taps into you. You close your eyes and really “feel it”. A mixture of high intensity (gotta love a 6-min jog) with a soulful climb is my jam!
Best part of being an Instructor is…
The community, no doubt about it. I can’t tell you how many times Dez or Winta and everyone at the studio would offer to watch Levi (my son) so I could get a workout in, or even an instructor helping me on the way auditioning the second time, the clients become your coffee dates or therapists on a Saturday morning. Some of my closest friends have come from RIDE and eternally grateful for this family.
Track you’ve had on repeat?
Rufus du Sol live from Joshua Tree
Favourite way to sweat outside of RIDE?
Usually Barry’s, F45, Barre, or even running!
How has becoming a RIDE Instructor changed you?
Learning to be vulnerable and be ok with it. So much of being an instructor is laid out on that podium for everyone to see. The real magic happens when you just let go. No judgment of yourself or others and let that true authentic you glow.
Who motivates you?
This may sound cheesy but myself. I am the worst critic, so I am always constantly challenging myself to be better, stronger, and held accountable for my actions. Having kids changes you one way or another and Levi constantly motivates me to be the best mother I can be for him. He is the reason I get up every morning (even if it’s before 7:00AM).
Where can we find you on a Saturday afternoon in the city?
Saturday morning rituals always begin with Cat 9:35 while front staff entertains Levi (god bless them all). Then a coffee date with friends and clients. I usually head to the market for fresh bagels and grab our favourite things like mustard sticks and spicy olives. It’s kind of mine and Levi’s thing.
Best memory since you joined RIDE?
I will never forget Dez’s birthday ride taught by Jess. The playlist was fire, everyone had glowsticks and the room was filled with all our friends screaming. Hands down most fun ride, pretty sure Alex broke her nose on the handlebars from pulsing too hard.
#1 piece of advice for someone looking to have a killer RIDE?
It can be and IS overwhelming your first time. Whether you come alone or with a friend trust the process and give yourself a few times before you decide if it’s for you. Just remember to close your eyes, embrace the darkness, and have fun. Despite what you’re thinking, no one is watching you.
What has you stoked on life right now?
I am expecting baby #2 (another boy)! So, I know that will have it’s new challenges and moments. I’m really excited to grow my family and looking forward to experiencing what the future holds.