Injuries are a part of an active lifestyle – there’s no way around it. If you’ve been physically active at any point in your life, chances are you’ve injured yourself before. Even if your physical activity is minimal, you may well have experienced some physical injury before.
A properly designed training program performed correctly should greatly reduce the risk of injury, but the reality is injuries are sometimes unavoidable. What becomes important, then, is adopting the proper mindset when rehabilitating an injury to ensure a speedy return to activity.
Continue reading “Adopting the Proper Mindset for Rehabilitation” »
I’ve recently moved to Toronto from Ottawa, and in the process of interviewing at potential facilities, I was asked to describe my philosophy on training. It’s a great question, because despite my knowledge and understanding growing considerably over the past five years, my philosophy has always remained the same. I’ve always believed people should train for the same reasons.
I’m always talking about certain aspects of it during a training session, and I’m confident that everyone I’ve had a chance to work with has gained some understanding and appreciation for what I believe training is about, but I’ve never articulated it in full. With that in mind, I thought it might be of benefit, both to myself and others, to do just that.
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Stretching – an activity that has a variety of benefits and should make up an important part of your long-term maintenance strategy.
Despite being an activity that’s been performed athletes and everyday people for generations, it’s something that can be often be misunderstood or performed incorrectly. Before we get in to how to stretch correctly, let’s talk about what stretching is, some of the theory behind it, and why you should do it.
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If you do any reading in the fitness world, it doesn’t take long to come across an article listing reasons or benefits of training hip extension.
It helps to counteract anterior pelvic tilt, promotes healthy hip biomechanics, and should be an important part of any training program. The exercises commonly used to train hip extension are ones you hear about all the time: squats, deadlifts, and hip thrusts, to name a few.
The aspect of training hip extension that doesn’t get much attention, however, is hip flexion.
Continue reading “The Importance of Hip Flexion” »
If you’ve ever tried to lose weight, there are a few things you figure out pretty quick.
Firstly, this whole delayed gratification thing isn’t as much as fun as advertised. The immediate pleasures of all our favourite foods are extremely compelling. A fleeting image of fitting into that old pair of jeans doesn’t really provide the same kind of motivation. Challenge #1.
Secondly, its us vs. the world. While we are looking to make healthier choices, become more active, and feel better about ourselves, the rest of the world is calling. They want us to eat shitty food, sit for extended periods of time, and generally suck all the physical activity out of our lives. Challenge #2.
Thirdly, most of us have a powerful urge to snack, and to continue snacking, for as long as humanly possible. I know do. I’m guessing you do too. It becomes far more of a problem when you are trying to reduce your caloric intake. It’s very hard to snack without blowing your caloric budget for the day, plain and simple. Challenge #3.
While I won’t be addressing the first and second challenges in this particular post, I will be addressing challenge #3 – how to snack while dieting.
When it comes to reducing your caloric intake, it behooves you to tap into your creative side and come up with some healthy snacks that can still fit into your nutrition plan.
Allow me to introduce you to the Frozen Chocolate Berry Delight.
Continue reading “The Diet-Friendly Snack: Frozen Chocolate Berry Delight” »
I was fortunate enough to be in attendance for the PTDC’s third event in Toronto this past weekend, for which the theme was fat loss. The event was jam-packed with some great speakers, as well as trainers from around the world.
The topic of fat loss was hit from virtually every angle, and it was really beneficial to see presentations from industry professionals with such diverse backgrounds.
It really was an all-star line-up of speakers including: Dr. Yoni Freedhoff, Nick Tumminello, Dr. Spencer Nadolsky, Mark Young, Jill Coleman, Chad Landers, and Krista Scott-Dixon.
In addition, there were plenty of other notable fitness and health professionals present, such as Jon Goodman (our most gracious host), Jon-Erik Kawamoto, Sol Orwell, Teiko Reindorf, Jason Maxwell, and others.
After the last PTDC event in October, I wrote a review with more of a play-by-play feel to it. Today’s post, however, will be a bit different. What I found most interesting about my experience at this seminar was hearing the same concepts and principles being repeated from different experts with different backgrounds, and different specialties. It really drove home the importance of some of these things, and as such, I’m just going to list them off, so that you can benefit from the profound wisdom that was imparted on all of us over the course of the weekend.
Continue reading “The PTDC Ultimate Fat Loss Seminar” »
Decision-making. It can be a controversial topic. Your elders tell you to take the time to weigh the pros and cons, and make a thoughtful decision, while you just want to make a quick choice and be done with it. The end result is you often do neither.
What’s the best way to do it? Is there a best way?
Let me tell you a story about some of my own decision-making experiences, and why I believe that making a decision is the single most important thing you can do.
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We’ve all been through it before. We justify it to ourselves for many reasons.
Your workout partner stopped going to the gym. You got bored of your program. It’s cold outside. You got injured. You’re too busy. You just don’t feel like going to the gym today.
Before you know it, one day turns into one week. A week into a month, and a month into “it’s been a while since I went to the gym.” Sound familiar?
On the surface it seems simple enough. You have a valid reason for not working out, you keep telling yourself. You would go to the gym, if had you had the time. But why does a small hiccup turn into completely falling off the wagon?
It has to do with psychology, and if you want to lift consistently (which you need to do whether you want fat loss or muscle gain) and prevent a bump in the road from becoming a 6 month break, you need to gain a deeper understanding of what keeps you going.
Continue reading “Why You Keep Giving Up On The Gym” »
The Personal Trainer Development Center's 2nd seminar took this place this weekend in Toronto, and I was fortunate enough to be in attendance. It was my first chance to attend a training-related seminar, and I wasn't really sure what to expect. I can tell you I could not have possibly expected the amount of fun and laughs that took place this weekend. Turns out that when a bunch of fitness pros get together, all kinds of silliness are bound to ensue. You're just sitting there, minding your own business, when all of a sudden, people are getting front squatted and someone else is recording it.
All in all, it was a wild weekend that exceeded my every expectation. Oh yeah, there were some cool presentations too.
Continue reading “Becoming the Expert: A Weekend In Toronto With The PTDC Crew” »
For those of you who may not know, I participated in my first ever half-marathon last weekend. The race is designed to raise money for military families. I was one of 18,000 taking part, and we managed to raise $250,000!
As first times usually are, this was a great learning experience for me. My previous race experience was only running 10 km , so making the jump to 21 km was pretty big. I had been looking to finish within 1:55, and fell just short, coming in at 1:55:25.
While running in such a big race with so many people hardly makes you feel lonely, the fact is, it’s just you talking to yourself out there. You can make it or break it based on how focused you are — how much attention you’re paying to your pace, speed, etc. In light of this, I decided to share with you what was running through my head during the race (pun definitely intended).
Continue reading “A Story of 21K” »