Home > How I Stay Fit – The Dailey Method x Style Domination

How I Stay Fit – The Dailey Method x Style Domination

*UPDATE: So, tonight I took my first interval class at The Dailey Method Ottawa. It absolutely kicked my butt. I am now soaking in a tub of hot water and epsom salts to soothe my tired muscles! Sarah taught this high-energy class tonight which is perfect for those who want to break a major sweat and looking for something high impact. So there is truly something for everyone at The Dailey Method. Sarah’s teaching style is super sweet though. No barking at you while you’re doing a billion lunges! LOL!

By some miracle, I have become a “runner” – you know, one of those people who willingly leaves the comfort of whatever room houses the tv and Netflix, and runs around her neighbourhood with no particular destination in mind. I blame my Husband the Marathoner for this. After years of nagging and guilt trips (“Is that your 38th Timbit? Yes? Oh ok…” and “You know…Atomic Fireballs are NOT a food group!”), he finally managed to get me to strap on some running shoes and join him.

How I Stay Fit - The Dailey Method x Style Domination
“When you recover or discover something that nourishes your soul and brings joy, care enough about yourself to make room for it in your life.” – Jen Shinoda Bolen

In addition to running, I got hooked on weights – possibly my fave exercise. I build muscle quickly, so I have to watch my reps closely or I end up looking like Mr. T’s twin sister.

How I Stay Fit - The Dailey Method x Style Domination

A few years ago, I discovered group exercise and it’s really for me. To be able to workout with a group of likeminded people really appeals to me. It makes me sort of feel like I’m part of a team, and I definitely feel guilty when I skip a class, like I’m letting my teammates down.

When The Dailey Method Ottawa (TDM Ottawa) reached out to me for a collaboration, I cheered! I had been meaning to sign up ever since my buddy Katie took their Back To You 30-Day Challenge at the beginning of the summer and cut some serious inches off her already svelte frame. Everybody I know has taken classes there, and raves about it. This fitness fanatic was super excited to get her ballet-yogilates on!

How I Stay Fit - The Dailey Method x Style Domination
Sarah adjusting plank form (Photo courtesy of Laura Kelly Photography)

Sarah Thompson, an adorably friendly and fit little dynamo and her charismatic husband Jamie opened TDM Ottawa back in January 2015 and it’s an Ottawa favourite. TDM Ottawa, a barre fitness studio located on Fifth Avenue, offers six different types of classes, basically offering classes of various fitness levels for everyone, including a connective tissue treatment class called MELT Method, which pretty much speaks directly to my chronically aching lower back.

Focusing on safely, efficiently and effectively increasing muscle length, strength tone and balance through yoga, Pilates and orthopaedic exercises, classes improve cardio, posture and motivation along with sharpening the mind, reducing injury and chronic pain. All classes are low impact, but you definitely feel the burn throughout thanks to their full body workouts.  Classes are also fun and welcoming – no barking drill sergeants here or touchy feely, meat-heady personal trainers that insist on you eeking out a hundred more painful deadlifts.

How I Stay Fit - The Dailey Method x Style Domination
Lunge-Tastic! (Photo courtesy of Laura Kelly Photography)

Sarah opened the studio to provide a happy, casual workout space and to create a warm and welcoming community, and she more than exceeded. The first time I walked into TDM Ottawa, I knew I had found my people.

First of all, not only is the space light, airy, spacious and gorgeous, the welcome area also serves as a little boutique selling everything from their adorably grippy socks that come in every colour of the rainbow, TDM Ottawa-logo Swell bottles, and workout wear that makes Lululemon’s stuff look like my Dad’s 30-year-old tired sweats (yes – I indulged and bought myself a bunch of goodies). On top of the great space, the clientèle is really cool too. TDM Ottawa attracts a lot of young urbanites who look effortlessly chic while savasana-ing, but also attracts all ages. One thing I noticed, everyone, no matter their age or gender, looked great and happy, no matter their size and shape.

How I Stay Fit - The Dailey Method x Style Domination

As part of the 30 Day Challenge, I’ve committed to taking three classes a week for a month. Last week was a bad one for my challenge, as I only got to the studio once due to a host of events I had committed to and my family visiting from down south. I’m right back into it though, and thrilled with the changes I’ve seen in my body so far.

Speaking of changes, as I don’t really practice yoga, and TDM Ottawa’s exercises have a strong yoga component, I feel that the classes are particularly zen while still feeling like you got a serious workout. My back has stopped hurting and my flexibility has most certainly increased since I started the classes a little over two weeks ago. I can actually touch my toes!!!! Can you believe that? My hamstrings are no longer blocks of wood that refuse to stretch, instead I can now bend over and tie my shoes without feeling like I’m sustaining a major muscle tear. Progress right there!

So, stay tuned for my follow up post at the end of my Back To You 30 Day Challenge. In the meantime, feel free to check out the studio located at 99 Fifth Avenue. You can also find The Dailey Method Ottawa on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

I highly recommend TDM Ottawa so far! It’s the most fun I’ve had working out in a really long time! A huge thanks to the TDM Team for whipping me into shape in record time, and special thanks to Mariah and Stephanie for always making sure my form is on point!

Dominique Baker
Dominique Baker

Dominique is a Canadian-based fashion and beauty influencer with a strong voice in Ottawa’s black community. Since launching her blog Style Domination in 2015, she has amassed a global fanbase. Dominique shares her life through beautiful imagery and compelling story-telling that speaks to her fans on a personal level. She’s been featured in The Guardian, Flare, The Kit and Cityline. She also hosts events for Dress for Success, the Gem Conference, and has been named a United Way Person 2 Know for the past three years.

Find me on: Web | Instagram


  1. September 27, 2016 / 1:21 pm

    WOW this was quite a nice read. I was an absolute ignorant about this! What I liked the most is how happy you look despite looking like a very challenging workout. Keep it up, Dominique!

    • Dominique
      September 27, 2016 / 2:57 pm

      Thanks so much for your kind comments, Ed! I have to admit, the workouts are tough, but I put on a brave face for the camera! LOL! Truly a great fitness studio. Happy to be working out there!

  2. September 27, 2016 / 2:52 pm

    Yasssss!! You look freaking amazing girl! I wish I could visit this place it looks so pretty! Can’t wait to see your post 30 days. Have fun with it.

    • Dominique
      September 27, 2016 / 2:56 pm

      Hi Marshalee!

      I wish I took more pictures of the studio. These don’t do it justice! It’s truly beautiful. The atmosphere is so nice, and all of the staff is great. This is the most fun I’ve had working out in a really long time!

      I hope you got my questions!


  3. September 29, 2016 / 5:06 pm

    I love both running and group ex too!! I actually teach barre classes like the Daily Method :). I’ve never taken one of their classes but I’ve heard great things!

    • Dominique
      September 30, 2016 / 3:28 pm

      Do you really!? That’s amazing! I love ballet so much (wish I never quit), and I’m enjoying these classes so much. My flexibility has sky rocketed! Thanks for your comment, Emily!

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