Wednesday, 27 February 2013


Because I want to see fitness be an integral part of my life, I am reading interesting books, watching sport related movies, going to the gym with specific goals and listening to people who have fitness embedded in their lives.

This week I had the privilege of interviewing personal trainer Jasmine from my gym. She had this to say, life is fitness, I love what I do...
Jasmine is constantly striving to take her personal fitness to new levels. She is a young college graduate and a certified member of Canadian Society of Exercise Physiology. She has earned her Pilates certification and this training underpins much of what she does with clients in personal training or group fitness classes. 

Over the past month, she has participated in a 30 day Hot Yoga Challenge. In addition to training once a week together, we have run into each other at the yoga studio, where I continue to challenge myself as part of my commitment to the Rogerstv show, the Yoga Monologues (working title.)

Learning from someone who is a lifelong learner has always been a joy of mine. Whether it was learning how to clean the house from my Mom, guitar in Grade 6 from a Rock and Roller dude, Counselling Courses from a professor helping clients in private practice, Home Schooling advice from a mentor, or resistance training from Jasmine; I have loved learning from someone who is still learning; still in process.

Learning from someone, steeped in their field of knowledge and still growing, is wonderful. All these people, while authorities in their field, seem to have a posture that leans towards humility, without even trying. It's easy for me to learn from that kind of expert.

While Jasmine and I appear very different and we are (she: early 20's, me: mid 40's, she: tall, slim, brunette, me: average height, curvy, blonde, she: very fit, me: getting fitter)... we share some commonalities...
  • Need for Genuine love
  • Dreams for the Future
  • Motivation to care for self and stay strong
Today is a Rest Day. A day to contemplate change, needs and goals, and write about them; a day to bake Zucchini Loaf for my family, and a day to allow my sore legs from Bootcamp (3 exercises with 30 reps of squats X 3 rounds) to recuperate.

I know this: Learning to truly care for myself and learning to be fit is a journey worth taking.

What are your fitness goals? Is there anything you are trying to change in your life? 

Until next time,

Monday, 18 February 2013

Are you an Athlete?

In an effort to understand the world of athletics, I decided it would be helpful to start to interview ordinary people in my own town.

This past week I had the opportunity to meet with Jay, member of my local gym, husband to Peggy, commuter to a job he loves, dad to two little sweet girls and an athlete.

We talked about his motivation to enjoy good health, stay active and his love of competition. I told him I was very impressed with the jumps onto the 3 foot platform. It's called Plyometrics.

WebMD had a good article and definition:
Plyometrics. -- also known as jump training -- is a training technique designed to increase muscular power and explosiveness. Originally developed for Olympic athletes, plyometric training has become a popular workout routine for people of all ages, including children and adolescents.
Jay started this kind of training over 15 years ago while at Lakehead University. Through the week, he works out two times with Peggy, swims, plays hockey, runs, uses weights and attends a yogalates class.

Part of my journey, is to discover my definition of an athlete. Along the way I am asking people what they think. Jay said,
I think an athlete is someone who has a clear of vision of their self, has expectations of self and knows the steps to get there.
I liked it; it's an inclusive definition.

We both agreed that professional athletes are a different breed with their genuine striving and passion.

In fact, Clara Hughes, 6 time Olympic Medallist in summer and winter games, refers to herself as a "former athlete" in her blog. I suppose some workplaces, like Olympic Training Camps and elite training clubs, have a clear definition for the word athlete.

Jay and I talked about inspiration and discovered that his father's early death from multiple health problems, including smoking made Jay determined to live a healthier lifestyle. Both of his parents were very supportive of his efforts in decathlon, hockey and Junior Baseball for Canada.

Throughout our conversation, I sensed that Jay seems to be pretty intrinsically motivated to be engaged in fitness. For years, he has set aside time and money to be a member of a gym and play hockey.

Lastly, I was curious about setbacks or health problems that he may have had to rehabilitate and how he has handled them. He described some; after all he is in his mid 30's and our bodies age and deteriorate over time. Additionally, he survived a car accident on a 400 series highway. You can imagine, the impact on a back, on a neck, and on a shoulder that has played competitive baseball.

My moment, to further explore in another post, came when Jay said,
I know my limits and I have adapted...
I think there is really something important in that statement for me and perhaps for others who have pushed themselves in good ways and debilitating ways.

For sure, this man can bench press and leg press a ton of weight like the younger guys, but it seems he has discovered a healthy way to be an athlete, stay fit and functional in daily life and really be there for his family. Perhaps, this is something that we discover as we age?

Thanks Jay for the great conversation and adding to my learning in this year of living athletically.

Happy Family Day to my Canadian Friends. I hope everyone has enjoyed their mid-winter holiday.

Until next time,

Saturday, 9 February 2013


Spin Bikes

I felt like quitting the Tri Club this morning before I even entered the change room.

Yep, quitting.

Living athletically must be like this. This has got to be normal from time to time.

Next week, I hope to find out. The plan is to  interview Jay, a member of the leisure centre who can jump from the floor to a platform that appears to be at least three feet in height. To me, that's impressive.

So impressive, that I approached Jay (a complete stranger) and told him I was writing a blog to discover how to live like an athlete. (For those who are getting to know me, I approached him with my man and asked if he was married and if his wife would mind us meeting to discuss fitness.) I am all about maintaining and building happy, strong marriages. I digress. He happily agreed to an interview, we exchanged contact information and I am looking forward to hearing his story.

You know what's funny to me? I even struggle to correctly spell the word "athlete" and "athletically", thank goodness for spell check! That's how far this concept is from most of my adult life.  In case any of you were wondering, I do not have a life long history of participation in athletics.

My Year of Living Athletically is challenging physically and emotionally.

Working out most days is the plan and I have injured myself a couple times by going to a class or lifting weights, when I should have incorporated a rest day. Rest day = self care = less injury. I am learning.

In other news, I had my first adventure in hot yoga this past week. For those of you who are new to yoga words..."Hot" yoga is not "sexy" yoga; it's heat panels in the ceiling, making the room extra warm.

I had an authentic person jokingly, yet seriously ask, "are you trying to spice up your love life? what's with the hot yoga?" Good question! If this person is wondering, the law of questions would dictate that there are others wondering as well. Mystery solved.

My second taping at RogersTV Studio, Newmarket for the Yoga Monologues, the stories of 3 ordinary people who have never practised yoga before." (working title) went well. I felt less nervous, although somewhat quiet. Turns out I have pretty good, "downward dog" pose and I was not self conscious at the yoga studio. I was able to follow the verbal cues and was more interested in following the instructor than anything else. 75 minutes flew by and my eyes were shiny and my skin looked great. I felt very relaxed the balance of that day.

Spin class was a struggle, lots of hills, my calves got a work out.

Grateful. I have all this energy; left over or freshly created? Not sure, an athlete would know. :)

So, for today, I am not quitting. I am going outside in 40cm of snow to soak up the sun with my wool hat, mittens, snow pants and favourite big and little men.

Friday, 8 February 2013


This past summer, my 9 year old son and I tried to take in a few morning sunrises while visiting Rondeau Provincial Park on Lake Erie.

Wonderful, glorious, spectacular.

The morning I snapped this picture; required a little effort to leave my snuggled husband and our  cosy bed. 

Caleb was insistent, 'Come on Mom, we don't want to miss it."

On this particular morning, I was so glad that I caught the glory of the rising sun or rather, it caught me.

Something powerful happened.

I felt tears spring to my eyes. I recognized them as tears of joy, hope and gratitude. You see, I felt a shift in my spirit. I knew that what I was believing for in my life, would come to pass. 

Sunrises signal a new day.

 “Forget the former things;

    do not dwell on the past.
See, I am doing a new thing!
    Now it springs up; do you not perceive it?