you really thinking this? Are you? And I was like, no I can’t do this. Can I do this? And then I looked around; it was so dirty, I guess this is like where most of the kids in the building they kind of like chill. So, there were like wrappers and beer bottles and a bunch of other stuff, condom wrappers and drug-related items in there and I was like, I wonder if I clean this up every morning what it would be like. I just questioned everything. I sat there for about forty-five minutes and then I went upstairs with my daughter and I literally just started thinking what I needed to do to train in the stairwell, so I thought I was going to wake up every morning and clean it and the next morning I did it. All I did was clean it, and then I sat there, and I was like, okay now what? (More laughter.) Then I went on Instagram, and anyone who complimented me on my weight loss I sent them a message and I told them I am a trainer and I have a gym. And for a long time no one showed up, so I started making posters and handing it around, and still, no one showed up. And then lucky for me I had two people who gave me a chance, and they showed up, and I ended up training them for close to nothing, but then they got mind-blowing transformation results and then it all just kind of started from there. Every client I was training, within a month they were losing like 30 pounds, so that’s how I started the 30 days transformation programme. So, while you were doing this, people began to ridicule you. They called you the stairwell trainer and all sorts of things. How did it impact on you and your psyche and what did you do to stop it from breaking your focus? It affected me a lot; I’m not going to lie. Like it broke me down. Some days, I wouldn’t want to go in there DOZ Magazine | February 2019 and then when I was in there, in the stairwells, and I knew 6 o clock is when everyone starts coming home, I would get very nervous because people are going to see me in there and people are going to pass by because the elevators weren’t working. But my daughter would go in the stairwell with me, and every time she was there she looked like she was in like happy land. She would be running, and Go in the park, go here, go there, but it was winter, and here we have snow. she’d be like, mum can I do this with the client? And it just gave me that boost of confidence and it kind of distracted me from the negative parts that I would have while being there so I would literally just use her as motivation. That’s why I say she did way for me than she even realises, but people were very mean, and a lot of people will tell me, oh don’t listen to what people say but how can you not listen? It’s like sometimes people think that you can just turn off those feelings, but you can’t because it’s hurtful. But at the end of the day, my programme was gaining results people were losing weight so that in itself made me say, I can’t stop. I would continue every day, and now the same people that were talking about me then are asking me to do videos with them it’s so funny. Sometimes when they message me in my head, I’m like, oh yeah? And it’s like they think I forgot what they said and did. I don’t know how they’re brave enough to message me and ask me for advice, but it’s a compliment. Now, I see it as a compliment. 16 Tell us, how has your business evolved since the day you began to use the stairwell as your gym? And I know you’ve also created some amazing products so please share that with us also. Okay, so I have a studio now, and I opened in what is considered one of the wealthier areas in all of Toronto. So, I have my gym, and it’s fully equipped. I opened in February of 2018, and by May, three months later, I’ve completely sold out, which blew my mind because I was not expecting that. So my wait list is growing, people write me and say I’m still on the wait list get me in. And I say, I’m working on it. I’m trying. (She laughs.) So, I created the Dubois Belt, Dubois Shaper, and the men’s vest. So, the Dubois Belt is like a latex mid-section belt, and it basically cinches you in and helps you to sweat, so you lose water weight, and it keeps you nice and tight and helps with your form. And I noticed that a lot of people were wearing that to the club. So I would go to the washroom any time I went out, and the girls would be like, Oh my God, are you Shontelle? And I’d be like, yes. And they’d be like, look. And they’d lift their dress, and they have the Dubois Belt on. Then I was like, okay I need to create something that people can wear when they’re going out, like an undergarment that does the same kind of thing, but you can wear it out to like a club or a party. So that’s where the Dubois Shaper came in. And the men were like Shontelle, what about me? What do we get? Then I created the Dubois Vest. So, I have those three products, and in the new year I’m coming out with the Dubois kit that will have all your essential things that you need to do a home workout.