Monday, December 31, 2007

New Year...New Hope....New Dreams!

I'm enjoying my down time right now because I know that right after the holidays, the gym will become very busy as most people pledge to themselves to get into better shape.

Unfortunately I've seen this happen all too often and most of the people who swear that they will come to the gym 3 times per week are hard to find by the time April comes around. Why does this happen? I really think it's because the people who join gyms in January don't realize that they need to change their lifestyle in order to truly see good results. Many feel that if they work out a little bit but don't change how they eat, they will get results. Once they figure out that it takes a commmittment to healthy eating and exercise in order to get results and keep those results, they lose their focus.

What I preach isn't a "quick fix" as there really are no quick fixes that work long term. Of course you can pick up a diet book and follow along religiously for a few months. Ultimately, though, these books are not looking at the long term implications for people. It requires someone to really look within themselves to find out what changes they need to make. This is something that many people struggle with.

We all have different "triggers" when it comes to food and until we can pinpoint what these are, no program will work. What excites me most about my job is my ability to really get to know my clients. Many of my sessions are not just about what kind or the amount of food they need to consume, but rather what is going on within their lives to prevent them from making healthy choices. It really doesn't matter if I have a good plan for them if they are not able to follow it.

My hope is that this year many of the people that join the gyms in January, or decide that this is the year for them to get in shape, really make an honest committment to improving their health.

Happy New Year!

Sunday, December 30, 2007

50 Mile training is in full gear now

I just completed my longest run since my trail race in September. During that time I've still run, but my longest distance has been 21.1 K and that was on Christmas Day.

Training for a 50 Mile race requires lots of long distance training, but to avoid injuries it's important to add mileage slowly each week. Although I feel that I have a very good "base" mileage, for some reason it's been difficult for me to go out longer. I can come up with plenty of excuses why, but it's really all about being mentally prepared to run for 2, 3, 4 and eventually 5 hours.

Today was a giant step forward in that direction so I'm very pleased with what I was able to do. I went out early at 7 AM and did 8 K's on my own. Then I met up with a group of friends who were doing about 18K's. This would have brought my mileage up to 26 which I would have been very happy with. However, they decided to run a little longer and the 18 K turned into about 20 K. I had to take a few more walk breaks than the group, but I was happy with my strong finish.

Besides the fact that I was able to run 28 K today, what really made this day special was the fact that I was able to run with some truly great people. Although running is such an individual thing, having group support is very important.

We all ran at different speeds but it really didn't matter. The fact was that we were running together. We would take turns running with each person for a few K's and that kept our minds off the fact that we were out for so long. During various parts of the run I had to listen to some music to keep me motivated. Thankfully my friends understand that I need to listen to music when I run and they don't take it as a sign that I'm being anti-social.

After our run we all met up for coffee/tea at the local coffee shop and I was asked by the Running Room store manager if I would do a nutrition talk for the 1/2 Marathon clinic. I haven't been able to do one of those in a long time because of my schedule at the gym, but I'm available this week so I'm glad so I was more than happy to oblige.

Now that I have my recent run "bookmarked" in my memory bank, I know that things will only get better from here on out. Getting past that 20-25 K mark was a big barrier for me so now that I have, I can start building on this every two weeks.

Saturday, December 29, 2007

My run/walk adventure in the trails today

As soon as we headed out from the Rouge parking lot at 8:00 AM this morning I knew that this was going to be an adventure I wouldn't soon forget. About 20 or so runners showed up today but when they saw the icy conditions, many of them decided to run on the roads.

The group dwindled to 7 of us and even though it was extremely difficult at times, I'm glad I decided to do it. Each of us took turns falling at least once on the trails, which resembled more of an ice rink than anything else. We managed to run/walk almost 10 K's which was enough for all of us. A run that usually takes us about an hour to do, took 1.5 hours instead. All I kept thinking about, besides falling, was that this was great training for my 50 Mile race. Running at such a slow pace is something that I'll be doing plenty of in May of next year.

There was something special about doing something that most others wouldn't think of and even though it would have been very easy to turn around and run somewhere else, I'm very glad that I made the decision to run in the trails.

Tomorrow I'll be doing my long slow run and I'm hoping to get in anywhere from 17-18 Miles. It will be nice to do the majority of this distance with a group of friends. As my mileage increases on my long runs, I'm finding it difficult to find running partners to join me. Most of my friends are not training for anything right now so that makes it difficult to convince them to run longer than they want to. Tomorrow I'll have to do a few miles on my own before joining the rest of the crew. Hopefully we won't have to worry about any ice on the roads......

Friday, December 28, 2007

I am surrounded by positive people and for that I am lucky

As a nutritionist, the biggest joy I get is seeing my clients getting closer and closer to achieving their goals. They have no idea how inspiring they are and I use their positive energy to help me with my own goals.

This holiday season I received lots of gifts and cards and I had to share one of the cards with you. It comes from a lady who has unbelievable drive and determination as she works well over 60-70 hours per week at times. Despite these hours, she still is committed to doing the best she can to reach her fitness goals.
Here's what she wrote in her card:

Why you are special to me

Usually at the end of an adrenalin rush, the brain is always craving for the food that is on the Greg's meal plan. The time is often between 4 pm and 6:30 PM. The Doctors always make sure that there are boxes of donuts or muffins with coffee at the nursing station. When all the nurses are reaching for the quick fix, I can hear a still small soft voice saying, "Why don't you just have a yogurt and a few almonds?" These are the haunting words that keep me in check in maintaining my goals.

Thanks Greg for the changes you make in my life. I really appreciate it. I hope to achieve a lot more.

Alleth, and many clients like her, are overcoming huge odds in their personal life while they try to make healthier eating choices. Each healthy choice they make is bringing them closer and closer to actualizing their goals.

Thanks Alleth and keep up the great work!

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

I am a Runner!

Christmas Eve was a mixed bag emotionally for me. It started off with a great run with a few friends but as the day progressed it became tough on me. Knowing that I wasn't going to see my two boys opening up their presents on Christmas Day was something that I knew was coming and yet when it arrived it was harder than I thought. I wanted to be left alone and yet I was lonely at the same time. Anyone who has children can relate I'm sure.

I had planned long ago, to do some kind of run on Christmas Day to take my mind off of things and to reflect on the year that just went by. I tinkered with the idea of running 30 K but because I'm going to be doing two long runs this weekend, I didn't want to go that far. I was thrilled when I asked one of my best friends to join me and she accepted. We haven't run together for months so I knew it would be an amazing experience but it surpassed anything that I could have imagined.

Our route was very hilly but we were able to go through some really nice neighbourhoods. It was amazing to see the roads so barren. Some of the places we were running through were simply breathtaking and we both reflected on how truly lucky we were to be out here on such an amazing journey.

On our way back home we stopped off at one of our friends’ house to wish her a Merry Christmas and then went off and finished our run. We were just at the 20K mark when she said that she wanted to do another 1.1 K to make it an even 1/2 Marathon distance. Not one to turn down running I accepted and we finished the run and made our way back to our cars.

We talked about so many things but one of the things that she said really struck home. She mentioned how she is defined by her running and that she is first and foremost a runner. I couldn't have summed that up any better myself. It truly is who I am and what I'm all about. I can't imagine what my life would be like if I hadn't found running. I know that I'd be a different person and probably not the type of person who I am today.

You don't have to run long distances to be defined as a runner. You simply have to understand the important part that it plays in your life. I'm proud to call myself a runner.

Merry Christmas!!!

Monday, December 24, 2007

Developing inner strength

It's not secret that I believe in the power of inner strength. It's also no secret that I feel that running has allowed me to not only find my inner strength but also to improve it as well.

As I was doing some last minute shopping today, (hey I'm a guy that's what we do right?) I ran into someone I hadn't seen in a long time. He used to workout with a friend of mine a few years ago. As I continued with my shopping I saw him heading towards me. I actually didn't even think he remembered who I was. We exchanged a quick hello and he made a point of telling me that I still looked good. It's amazing to me what little it takes to lift someone’s spirit up because that's what he did for me.

I find it extremely difficult to accept compliments so when I get them I tend to bookmark them for when I really need a boost. A big reason why I run in the first place is to improve not only my physical appearance but also to improve my mental game as well. Running allows me to work on my core strength and endurance. It also challenges me mentally to go further and further. There are times when I run when I feel like I could go on forever. Other times, though, it's a struggle just to get out the door.

To develop my inner strength I need to be away from any distractions. I've become better at becoming more independent and that has built up my self-confidence. Whenever I feel that I can't go on, I can always bring myself back to a time and place where I felt the same way but was able to continue.

Some people surround themselves with too many distractions and they never develop that inner strength. They rely too much on outsiders to provide their motivation and then when those people aren't there, they are lost and have a difficult time carrying on without them. Unfortunately, I see too many of these people at the gym. It's usually the ones who will only workout if they have a trainer to push them. Personal trainers can be a great asset but they shouldn't provide you with all your motivation should they? You should want to workout because it's something that YOU want to do for yourself.

Listening to music can be another way to escape from reality for a few hours. I guess that's why when I run on my own I simply must listen to music. There are some songs that really inspire confidence during a particularly tough run. I usually pay very close attention to the lyrics and have become very good at picking out a particular phrase which I can use as a metaphor for my running.

The stronger you can become mentally, the easier it will be for you to achieve the many goals you have for yourself. Nothing is out of the realm of possibilities as long as you continue to work hard at developing your inner strength.

Have a MERRY CHRISTMAS everyone!

Thursday, December 20, 2007


I seem to get stuck on one song for a long time before I listen to it to death and then it loses it's meaning. I've pretty much accepted the fact that that's the way it is. Right now, one of my favorite running songs is "Believe" by Suzie McNeil. The lyrics are so inspiring that I just had to share them with you:

moment is fading
One minute's past
But I've got this moment
To make it all last
I'm standing before you
Taking my chance on
Everything I never thought that I could be
Cuz you can do almost anything

If you just beleive
You can move mountains with dreams
The higher you climb
The better it gets
Cuz you will see things
You'll never forget
If you just believe

It's like I'm falling through my own fears
They used to haunt me, but now they're not here
There's no looking back, my future is clear
No giving up
And I'm holding on when it gets rough
Cuz you can get through most anything

If you just believe
You can move mountains with dreams
The higher you climb

The better it gets
Cuz you will see things
You'll never forget
If you just believe

No one says it's easy
And no one says you have to be perfect
But as long as you try
You're always gonna find
It was worth it

If you just believe
You can move mountains with dreams
The higher you climb
The better it gets
Cuz you will see things
You'll never forget
If you just believe
You can move mountains with dreams
If you just believe
You can move mountains with dreams

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Don't make excuses.....make a PLAN instead!

These next two weeks are probably the hardest time for people trying to lose weight but it doesn't have to be. It's so easy to give ourselves reasons for not sticking to a plan especially when those around you don't seem to care about what they eat/drink.

One of the many things I've learned since I started running is that I can improve my mental focus more than ever before. I've tried to channel that same ability to my daily life. During my run yesterday I spoke to Ken about some of the things that really get me upset. One of them is the fact that because I run so much, people just assume that it's "easy" for me. This couldn't be further from the truth. Each run I have I battle my own mental demons to continue. There are various points either before or just as I start to run, that I ask myself why I'm doing this? Thankfully I can recall plenty of runs that I've "bookmarked" in my brain which I can use to motivate me when things are getting tough.

Running has also allowed me to think more clearly and solve problems. This is probably one of the main reasons why I get lost so often when I'm running. There are times when I'm running that I literally forget where I am as I'm so lost in thought. During my run, my thoughts will often turn to my kids, work and specific clients who I've been lucky to work with. I often will feed off the positive energy of my clients.

Many of my clients have overcome so many obstacles in their own life. Each one of them have their own set of personal demons that they are trying to battle but the one common thing that they share is they have a plan. The clients who do really well won't settle for excuses. They may not always have a "perfect" week of eating but they will acknowledge this and move forward instead of dwelling on it. I often talk about having “bounce back" ability. It's alright to get knocked down but it's NOT alright to stay down.

During this holiday season, if you want to indulge in something then make sure you do so when YOU want to do it. Don't feel obligated to eat something just because you don't want to hurt someone’s feelings. Food tastes much better without a side of "guilt!" People often will encourage you to eat more during the holiday season without even thinking about how this may affect someone who's been trying hard to lose weight. I really think this comes down to being selfish. Misery certainly does love company so be wary of that. The more control you can take with regards to holiday eating the better you'll feel.

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

More inspiring Isagenix stories

This is one incredible womans account of her 9 - day cleanse. You are amazing Karen!

Karen Macfarlane

Day 1 – Wed Dec 5 -Weight 155lb, upper right arm 12.5 inch, waist 35in, hips 39in, upper thigh 22.
7am – Cleanse drink – Berry and accelerator capsule
10am - snack 1
12pm – Cleanse drink – accelerator capsule
2pm – snack 1
3pm – snack 1
5pm - Cleanse drink
6pm – snack 2
7pm – 10 Almonds
8pm – Cleanse Drink
8:30pm – hardboiled egg 1

The Berry cleanse drink tastes like watery prune juice, tastes not bad, make sure it is ice cold, I prefer to drink it straight and then water. Throughout the day no hunger but by 6pm really hungry chewable snacks aren’t cutting it. Very hard to not eat when use to consuming 6 meals a day. OK after eating egg, went to bed at 9:30pm so I wouldn’t think about eating, had a cup of boiled hot water . I hate being hungry. Still very skeptical but will push through this day trying to convince myself as to why I am doing this when I have spent the last year losing 54lb and am at my goal weight. Will give an honest opinion when complete.
Day 2 – Thurs Dec 6
7am – Cleanse Drink and accelerator capsule
9am – snack 1
10: 30am – snack 1
12:00 – Cleanse drink and accelerator capsule
12:30 – snack 1
1:25 – snack 1
2:30 – snack 1
5:00pm – Cleanse Drink, 10 blackberries
6pm- snack 1, 10 almonds
7pm – handful of plain croutons
8:00 – Cleanse Drink
8:30pm – 1 hard boiled egg

Had a cup of boiled hot water this morning, made my brain think it was tea. Not too hungry this afternoon, very busy at work. By 3:00pm I was starting to get really hungry. Missed my Boot Camp cardio class due to incident at work, not very happy. Really hungry by the time I got home. After 8pm, I had the egg, the urge to eat everything in my kitchen cupboard went away. Went to bed at 9:30pm. Still asking myself why am I doing this.
Day 3 – Friday, Dec 7 -Weight 150lb, upper right arm 12 inch, waist 34.5in, hips 38.5in, upper thigh 21in.

7am – Replacement Meal shake (Vanilla), accelerator capsule
9:30 – snack 2
12:00 – accelerator capsul, chicken, green pepper, tomatoes, 2 slices whole wheat bread
1:00 – snack 2 (before I work out)
3:00pm – snack 1 almonds
5:00pm- Replacement Meal (Vanilla) shake with blackberries
7:00pm – snack 1
8:00pm – hardboiled egg 1

Had to drag myself out of bed this morning, not sure if it’s the weather or not going to the gym yesterday. Got on the scale, what a surprise 5 lbs in two days and ½ in on all measurements. Feeling lighter all over. Prepared my lunch, looking forward eating food today. Lunch was delicious. Went to the gym 1:00pm, had a good workout 45 minutes Heavy Compound weight routine, 15 minutes of abs, 20 minutes interval training on the bike and felt my energy was good. Replacement meal for supper, used the blender and added blackberries to it and ice cold water, tasted pretty good. I found I was very thirsty today. Not really making any more trips to the bathroom as my body was already use to drinking over 2 litres per day. First day of getting rid of solids from my body. Feeling better about program and will stick with it.
Day 4 – Saturday Dec 8
8am -Replacement Meal Shake (Vanilla) with blackberries
11:00am-Snack 1
12:00 – accelerator capsule, lunch chicken, tomatoes, green pepper, spinach, balsamic vinaigrette dressing, whole wheat bread 2 slices
3:00pm – snack 1 and almonds
5:30pm – Replacement Meal Shake (Vanilla) with blueberries
7:00pm – almonds and 1 hard boiled egg
This is my recovery day and I do not work out. Feeling full of energy today and enjoyed my lunch. I find eating mid day is best for me. Keeping busy all day putting up Xmas decorations and out shopping (this is my workout today). The hardest time was making supper for my family and not eating. Just went and watched T.V. I feel that the excess fat I was carrying around my middle and my legs is less. I won’t weight myself until tomorrow. I have been drinking about 6 cups of boiled hot water in a mug, it gives me something to do when I want to eat. This is in addition to the 8 cups of water I drink during the day. Many trips to the bathroom but I do not feel as dehydrated today. Getting rid of solids from my body once a day instead of 3 times a day is taking a toll on my system. The hard boiled egg at night takes away the urge to eat and I do not wake up starving in the morning. I am motivated to stay on the program to see how I feel at the end.

Day 5 – Sunday Dec 9 – weight 150lb
8am – Replacement Meal Shake (Vanilla) with blueberries, 1 accelerator capsule
10 am – 2 snack and almonds
12:00pm – Replacement Meal Shake (Vanilla) with blackberries, 1 accelerator capsule
2:00pm – 2 snack and almonds
5:00pm – Salmon, broccoli, asparagus
8:00pm – 1 egg

Went to the gym 11:30am. Workout today was 45 minutes Heavy Compound weights, felt the quad muscles weak but pushed through the workout. I prefer the shake with blackberries, more flavour released from berries once put in the blender. Had my meal at supper time.
Day 6 – Monday Dec 10 – weight 150lbs
8am – Replacement Meal Shake (Vanilla) with blackberries, 1 accelerator capsule
10 am – 1 snack and almonds
12:00 - chicken, spinach, celery, tomatoes, balsamic vinaigrette dressing, 2 slices Whole Wheat bread 1 accelerator capsule
2:00 – snack 2
6:30pm – Replacement Meal (Vanilla) with blackberries
7:30pm – 2 snack
8:00pm - almonds
Half way through and feeling great, had lots of energy today, my whole body feels lighter. I am off work this week getting ready for Xmas, worked all day cleaning the house that was a workout in itself and at 4:00pm worked out in the gym for 45 minutes lifting weights and then went to Abs class at 5:00pm. Feeling lighter all over and energy was good through workout and abs class
Day 7 – Tuesday Dec 11 – weight 148lbs
7:00am – Replacement Meal Shake (Vanilla) with blackberries, 1 accelerator capsule
10am – 2 snacks
12:30pm – chicken, spinach, celery, tomatoes, balsamic vinaigrette dressing, 2 whole bread slices 1, accelerator capsule
3:30pm – 2 snacks
5:00pm – Replacement Meal Shake (Vanilla) with blackberries
7:00pm – almonds
Personal Trainer session. This is the day I was really interested in seeing how my energy level sustained as I push myself to the limit for 1 hour. Had a great training session, felt lighter on my feet today and sustained my energy for the entire session. Weighed myself prior to training 148lb. The excess fat or water I was carrying at my waist/hips and legs has gone. Just need to improve the strength in my legs without affecting my knee joints.
Day 8 – Wednesday Dec 12
7:00am – Cleanse Drink – 1 accelerator capsule
9:00am – 2 snacks
11:00am - salad
12:00pm – Cleanse Drink – 1 accelerator capsule
2:00pm – 2 snacks
5:00pm – Cleanse Drink
7:00pm – 2 snacks
8:00pm – Cleanse Drink
8:30pm - almonds
This is my recovery day, no weights or cardio today. I found the 2nd round of cleanse days was easier than the first two days, as I knew what to expect and how I would feel. I haven’t had the urge to clean out my kitchen cupboards. Energy is good.
Day 9 – Thursday Dec 13
7:00am – Cleanse Drink – 1 accelerator capsule
9:00 – 2 snacks
12:00pm – Cleanse Drink – 1 accelerator capsule
2:00pm – 2 snacks
4:30pm – Almonds – Pre Boot Camp class.
5:00pm – Cleanse Drink
7:00pm – 2 snacks
8:00pm – Cleanse Drink
8:30pm - almonds
5pm Boot Camp – 45 min. cardio/weights, 45 min abs class back to back. I did this class just to see if I could on my final cleanse day. I made sure I was fully hydrated and my energy was good all the way through. I made it.

Recap: Weight 147 lbs, I lost ½ inch on my upper right arm, right thigh, hips and 1 inch on my waist.
The hardest time was the first two cleanse days. I had to dig deep mentally to get through. The next 5 days were easier. I think it would be easier to do when it is warm outside and light at night so I could keep busy outside. Once I come home from work or gym at night and it is dark all I did was think about what I couldn’t eat. It felt like, you know you can’t have something the more you want it. I kept telling myself, if I could take myself to the gym for 9 months straight, workout 6 days a week and lose 54 lbs and become physically fit I could certainly handle 9 days to rid my body of toxins and hopefully feel better by the end. I have my ‘Positive Thoughts’ in front of me all the time, “Guard your goals like a knight would guard his castle and don’t let anyone get in your way”. Half way through my whole body was feeling lighter, have lost my love handles at my waist and my legs feel lighter, don’t know if it was excess water I was holding or I reduced fat but when I put my jeans on this weekend there was nothing hanging over the waist. My final two cleanse days were excellent as I knew what to expect. I was hungry by 3:00pm on both days, but I am feeling better mentally and physically. I felt my energy levels for the 9 days stayed the same throughout the day and did not struggle with my physical ability but sometimes had to dig deep with my mental. After both cleanse days I found I was very dehydrated even though I drank in excess of my 8 litres of water daily. The next day I drank all day to rehydrate. It was definitely worth doing the program and I will continue with the products.

Monday, December 17, 2007

Getting better at taking it easy

Yesterday, because of the weather, I didn't get a chance to run. In anticipation of that I did 2 runs on Saturday so Sunday was going to be a "bonus" day. If I made it out great but if not I wasn't going to get too upset about it. Similarly, as the snow is melting outside right now, I am tempted to go for an afternoon run. However, I'll take another day off and get ready for my run tomorrow morning with Ken. I decided to ride the stationary bike for an hour instead.

Each week or two, I've started to increase my weekly mileage and I think that's the best way for me to prepare for my race. It will be unlikely that I'll be able to get my long runs in every week so that will mean going out twice on some daysc and taking more days off.

I have even come to the realization that I MAY have to do some of my runs on the dreaded treadmill. IF that day comes you'll know about it as I'll be complaining the whole time. I can't remember the last time I actually had to do a run on the treadmill instead of going outside but I may have no choice in the upcoming months.

As I get wiser with regards to my running, I've learned to relax more and take a day off here and there to rest. In the past I used to count down the minutes until my next run and while I haven't lost any of my passion for running, I've learned that taking some time off to rest is better than feeding my obsession from time to time.

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Running with my 2 boys

I cannot wait to run with my 2 boys this morning as we do the Snowflake run at the Ajax waterfront. I really don't care whether we run for 5 minutes or 30 but I'm hoping that my love of running rubs off on them a little bit. Running has changed my life so much and I hope that it has a similar impact on their lives.

Whenever I pick up my youngest son, Marcus, from the babysitters he throws his backpack in the back of the car and then runs home, which is around the block. I follow him slowly in the car and can't help but smile from ear to ear. Whenever my oldest joins him, it's twice as nice.

Today will be a great day indeed!

Well, the weather today was one of the worst running days yet and my oldest son decided not to run. My youngest was with me and I left the decision up to him. He made it VERY clear to me that he was going to run no matter what the conditions and so we ventured out.

The temperatures were actually not too bad but it was the blowing/swirling wind that was the hard part for him. We went out for about 1/2 K but the conditions were just too much for him. We ran back into the comforts of the Rotary Park pavillion as fast as we could. Marcus was very disappointed that he didn't finish but I couldn't have been any more proud of him today. He was the only child who showed up and he was rewarded with a medal for his accomplishments which cheered him up.

On the way home I told him how proud I was of him and that I knew he was disappointed in not finishing. I know that there will be other races and he made it a point to tell me that he wants to do more of these in the future.

Saturday, December 15, 2007

Twice as nice!

After weeks of trying to do a long run, 20K's or more, it happened this morning. Of course I had to pick one of the coldest days of the year, -20 with the wind chill, but it least it happened in the trails.

Two of my friends joined me at 6:45 AM and we ran through the trails with the help of Ken's trusty headlamps. The footing wasn't as bad as I expected it to be and although my two friends each took a tumble, I was fortunate enough to stay on my feet. We finished the first loop in just over an hour and then met up with the rest of our friends at 8:00 AM to do another loop.

As soon as we got to my car I split half a banana with my friend. I also had to replace my water bottles which were now frozen. We had to wait for about 5 minutes before heading off with the rest of the group. This may not seem like a long time but when you are sweating in the cold, the last thing you want to do is stand around. Once we started out on the 2nd loop I started to warm up though.

The 2nd loop was all about staying mentally tough. My main goal wasn't about just running for 12 Miles today but I also wanted to increase the amount of time I was running. I knew that the slower I went, the better it would be for my training. At the same time, though, I was getting so cold that all I kept thinking about was getting home as fast as I could. I had visions of drinking a cup of hot chocolate and was imagining how nice it was going to be to have a hot shower.

Just as we headed towards our cars, I realized that I was going to be about 1 mile short of what I wanted to run today. Thankfully one of my closest friends also wanted to run a little longer so we both decided to run a little longer until the goal was met. It would have been easy for me to be satisfied with doing the 2 loops and I could have justified it by saying that the trail run was harder than doing it on the roads. In the end, though, I wouldn't have satisfied myself so I was happy and proud that I decided to keep going.

This was the longest run I've been able to do since my race in October and it will help with my confidence as my runs increase in time to over 3 hours or more.


Since we are supposed to be getting a large amount of snow over the next 24 hours, I decided to do another run this afternoon. I've been slowly trying to increase my weekly mileage and I was about 5 miles off from last week (43 miles). Being as competitive as I am, I wasn't going to let the day go by without making sure that my weekly mileage was where it needed to be. Last week I went out for 2 runs on my birthday and because of my schedule at work and when I watch my 2 boys, getting two runs in from time to time will have to be something that I'll have to do to get my mileage up.

The 5 mile run was at a nice slow pace. I realized that the more running I can get my body accustomed to, the better it will be for my race in the spring.

By the time I had finished I had run a total of 17 Miles (27 K's), 3 hours and burned over 2,000 calories (the best part....LOL)

Friday, December 14, 2007


It seems like such a long time since I was able to do a long run of at least 12-14 miles and come hell or high water I'm going to get in at least one and possible two before the weekend is over.

My plan is to do a long trail run on Saturday of approximately 2 hours and then follow that up with at least 1.5 hour run on Sunday. I'll also be running with my kids at the snowflake run at the Ajax waterfront (Rotary Park) on Sunday. I'll probably get there extra early, run on my own for 6-8 miles and then do the fun run with the kids. They're probably not as excited as I am but I'm hoping that changes when they see all the people there on Sunday.

I took today off from running so I'll be ready to go early Saturday morning at the Rouge Valley. The key to my training for my 50 Mile race is to make sure that my body is ready to run for long periods of time. This is why the runs this weekend are so important. I've been averaging just over 40 miles per week and want to slowly increase that by about 3-5 miles each week. I'm hoping that the weather co-operates with my play.

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Isagenix success story

"After training for about 3 months I noticed that my weight loss was pretty minimal. After speaking with Greg about my low weight lost he suggested that I consider doing a cleanse. I am not the type of person to try anything unless its prescribe by a doctor but after working with Greg I knew that I could trust his recommendation.
I began the 9 day Isagenix program at the begin of December with great hopes to lose some weight,cleanse out my body and mostly to build some self discipline. After the 9day program I had lost 5 pounds and went down 2 inches in my waist!
The weight loss was great to see but the best part of this program was how great I feel. My energy level has skyrocketed...and I just feel upbeat, light, and simply...healthy!
This is a great product, which I will continue to incorporate into my daily life!"

Jennifer Chadwick-Hartley
Scarborough, Ontario

For more information about Jennifer, please visit her blog:


What is Slindy? It's a new word I created to describe the conditions of my run today, slushy+ice+windy. A run that usually takes me about an hour, took an extra 10 minutes because of the conditions today. I was happy that I ran, and even more fortunate not to fall. Instead of running on the sidewalks, which were unbelievably icy, I tried to stick to the snow covered parts. This resulted in running through mostly slush.

The run up the Westney hill was by far the most difficult part and I did everything I could to avoid slipping backwards. The wind picked up toward the end of the run, (of course) and that made the last mile more difficult.

During the run a few songs would come on my mp3 which would inspire me to continue. I also thought about the fact that these slower runs are what will help me when I do my trail race. I tried to put myself mentally in the trails and didn't worry about how slow I was going.

I hope that the roads are a little bit better tomorrow morning but if not, I'll use today as a reminder that it's the tougher runs that build character. Today certainly was one of those days.

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

More amazing Isagenix stories keep coming in.....

I've been telling anyone and everyone about how great the Isagenix products are and the reviews I've been getting from my clients is letting me know that I made the right decision to endorse this product.

The average weight loss I've seen from my clients is 5-8 pounds. Beyond just the weight loss, though, my clients have reported feeling "lighter" and having more energy as a result of the cleanse. What's even more exciting is the fact that they have all managed to keep the weight off.

I am so convinced that this product works that I'm including it in the mealplans I'm doing for my clients. Whether you do a cleanse or simply decide to use some of the product you will notice a big difference in the way you feel.

Many of the members of my family, all of whom suffer from Diabetes type II, have started to use the Isalean shakes and as a result they have seen their weight reduced and their blood sugars stabilized. One of the main reasons why I'm so excited about this product is the fact that it contains a balanced amount of proteins, carbohydrates and fats. It also contains a very important mineral called Chromium, which helps control insulin levels. When insulin levels become too high or too low, especially for Diabetics, this can cause enormous health problems. However, you don't have to suffer from Diabetes to see the benefits of these products. By keeping your blood sugar and insulin levels stabilized, it reduces your cravings for simple carbohydrates. Eating too many refined/simple carbohydrates can result in storage of body fat.

Another key element to keeping blood sugar levels stabilized is exercise. I still cannot believe how much energy I had during my cleanse. I now realize that as my training picks up for my 50 Miler in the Spring, I can feel safe knowing that I can continue to use the Isagenix products to ensure that I'm getting the proper amount of nutrients.

For all of you who are using the Isagenix products, keep up the great work. For those of you who haven't tried it yet, what are you waiting for?

Monday, December 10, 2007

Taking two steps back to take one giant leap forward

Since I started running my biggest dilema is how much should I run. I honestly think that I could run every single day for the rest of my life if it were up to me. Unfortunately, or fortunately depending on how you look it, my body tells me otherwise and I eventually run less than I'd like to.

Without fail, everytime I take a day off from running I'll see someone running on the streets and immediately feel like I should be out there. The guilt about not running can be tough to overcome for me and all I can do is look forward to is my next run. I tend to map out my week in terms of what days/times I'll be running and the distance I'd like to run. Some people would say that my priorities are distorted but I know that personally if I don't run it has a negative trickle down effect on other aspects of my life.

As I begin to train for my 50 Mile race in the spring I'll need to be even more disciplined with my running. Running for speed will be replaced with running for time out on the road/trails. I haven't been able to do the distance that I'd like for the past two weekends so this week I'm going to ensure that I get in a run of at least 2 hours once and possibly twice this weekend.

Saturday, December 08, 2007

How "big" is your shadow?

One of the best things about running at 5AM, besides not having to worry about too much traffic, is that at the beginning of my run I seem to cast not one but two shadows. As I run down Church street and just before I head East on Rossland, I always see two shadows. I'm sure there is a logical explanation for this but I tend to see things more philosophical than others I think.

Whenever my clients start to "get" the message I'm trying to teach them with regards to nutrition it makes me feel like I have done my job. I'm lucky that I get to help so many people achieve their goals and because I follow the same plan myself, it's easy to talk with my clients about their struggles and how to overcome them.

My "shadow" then is quite large and I take great pride in the fact that I can be a positive influence on so many people. I'm sure that many of my clients are in turn helping others which is also something that I'm happy about. We have a chance to influence so many people by simply starting with trying to make small changes within our own lives. You never know when your positive "aura" will motivate someone to begin to make healthier eating choices. That's the benefit of surrounding yourself with positive people.

I told my oldest son this week that I do whatever I can to avoid negative people because they are trying to unload their negativity on me directly or indirectly. Misery certainly does love company and I told him to seek out people who are trying to make positive and healthy choices in their lives. I'm sure like any 9 year old the message will be lost somewhere but I'm hoping that he grasps a little bit of what I'm talking about.

You never know how big your shadow is and how many people you can influence so try your best to stay positive, you'll be amazed at how many positive people you will attract as a result.

Wednesday, December 05, 2007

Isagenix Recap

Here are the final stats from my first 9-day cleanse:

Starting Weight: 163.5
Ending Weight: 155.5

Starting Waist Measurement: 32
Ending Waist Measurement: 31

Starting Body Fat%: 14
Ending Body Fat%: 13

More than just losing an inch and 8 pounds though, what I actually gained was far more impressive.

I was very sceptical when I first started and actually a little nervous as well. I didn’t and won’t let anything get in the way of my running so I was afraid that this would hurt my performance. What I learned is that I actually improved my strength by losing those 8 pounds. As a runner I know the pounding that I place on my joints and feet and by running at a lighter weight I was able to minimize the “foot strike” mechanism which causes most of the problems for runners. I’m constantly trying to have “quick choppy strides” to lessen the impact of my feet hitting the pavement. Running at a lighter weight allows me to do that well.

Beyond that, though, I learned to dig down deep to find energy that I didn’t know I had. Some of the runs were mentally tougher than others. I think that just knowing that I didn’t have a lot of food in my system probably caused me to second guess myself. Would I have the energy necessary to complete this run? The mind can play some serious games with you when you are running and I was happy that I was able to win most of these battles.

If I was to grade my ability to follow this detox on a scale of 1-10 I would probably give myself an 8. I had one semi-bad day and one really bad day but otherwise I was pleased with what I was able to do. The next time I do this I’ll make sure it’s not during football season.

The next step for me is to slowly incorporate a regular eating plan while still using plenty of the Isagenix products. There’s no use in messing with a formula that works which is why I’ll do a cleanse day once or twice per month and will use the meal replacement shakes to replace at least one or two meals per day.

I constantly talk to my clients about trying to eat healthy at least 80% of the time. Nobody is going to eat perfectly everyday but if you can strive for perfection than the times where you stray should not have a negative impact on your long term goals.

Tuesday, December 04, 2007

Isagenix Last Day!

Current Weight: 155.5
Current Body Fat: 13%

It's OK to get knocked down but it's NOT OK to stay down!

I've been following the Isagenix program very well for the most part but yesterday I strayed a little bit. I was given an amazing gift by one of my clients (a food basket containing one of my favorite things) and I ate it when I got home from work.

I went for an amazing run this morning and was thinking about what I had done. I felt guilty for a little bit but then I realized something very important. I can't undo what happened but I can move forward today to get back on track.

Instead of avoiding the scale I jumped right on it to see where I was. I realized that my weight would probably jump up but was surprised to see that it remained at 155 pounds. Today I'm going to make sure that I finish this cleanse off the way that I started it and that is to make sure that I do the best I can.

I know that those of you who are also doing this cleanse will have your own personal demons that you must fight. The important thing is not to dwell too much on what you didn't do but instead focus on the positives that you are doing.

I'll post my final stats tomorrow morning. Thank you all for your support through this.

Monday, December 03, 2007

Isagenix Day VIII

Isagenix Day VIII

The Final Homestretch!

Current Weight: 155
Current Body Fat: 13%
Exercise: 40 minutes on stationary bike

Those who know me realize that I truly do believe in the “Running Gods” and that was never more evident than yesterday.

A group of 5 runners joined me yesterday as we trudged along in the deep snow and icy roads for about 11 K’s. The intent was to go for about 18 K’s but sometimes you have to play it smart and that’s what we decided to do.

The sidewalks were not ploughed which meant that we had to run on the roads, most of which were also not ploughed. There were parts of the run where we had to literally dodge out of the way of oncoming cars into the deep snow. This put all of our conditioning to the test and we were all feeling pains in our calves because we had to constantly lift our knees high to get out of the snow.

I was surprised at how much energy I had but I attribute that to the decrease in body weight and of course the detox that I’m on.

These last few days, as I start the final cleanse days, will be a good time for me to reflect on my first detox and the changes that my body has gone through during this time. For me, it’s not just about dropping those extra pounds as it’s made me more focused on my own eating habits. It’s allowed me to dig down deep and discover energy reservoirs that I didn’t think I had.

Here’s today’s’ “drinking” schedule:

7:30 AM: Cleanse for life drink with accelerator
10:00 AM: Isagenix snack (2)
1:00 PM: Cleanse for life drink with accelerator
3:30 PM: Cleanse for life drink
5:30 PM: Isagenix snack (2)
9:00 PM: Cleanse for life drink, 2 hard boiled eggs

Sunday, December 02, 2007

Isagenix Day VII

Less weight = better running for me!

Current Weight: 155.5
Body Fat %: 14

After seeing my weight drop from 163.5 to a low of 154 and now holding at 155, one thing remains clear and that is my “running weight” seems to best at this weight.

Today will be my 5th run since started my Isagenix detox on Monday November 26th and losing that extra few pounds has made me lighter on me feet. This in turn has helped my running tremendously. Although I realize that weight training would probably benefit me, I don’t want to put on extra weight, even if its muscle weight, as I wouldn’t feel comfortable.

When I was running at 160 or higher, I felt very sluggish and each step seemed harder and harder. I don’t anticipate losing more weight between now and the time my detox ends on Wednesday morning, but my goal is keep my weight at 152 to 155 pounds, as I feel that anything less or more than that range may hurt my running.

After my 18-20 K run this morning, I’m sure my weight will drop a few pounds because I’ll be losing water and electrolytes, but it will no doubt stabilize itself throughout the day as I continue to drink fluids. Still, I cannot complain about the fact that I’ve lost a total of 8 pounds in less than 1 week.

Here’s today’s eating plan:

7:30 AM Pre-Run: Tea with ½ banana
8:30 AM to 10:30 AM: 1 serving of HEED electrolyte replacement drink, 1 GU sports gel
11:30 AM: Isagenix meal replacement drink with 1 accelerator capsule
1:00 PM: Isagenix snacks (2), salad, 2 hard boiled eggs
2:30 PM: Isagenix meal replacement drink with 1 accelerator capsule
5:00 PM: Isagenix snacks (2)
6:30 PM: Chicken breast, 1 med red potato, green beans, beets
8:00 PM: Isagenix snacks (2)

Saturday, December 01, 2007

Isagenix Day VI

Putting my energy levels to the test!

Current Weight: 155
Current Body Fat %: 14

After taking a day off on Friday from running, I was back out on the trails early this morning (7 AM). Two of my friends joined me for a nice and easy 6 Mile trail run in the Rouge Valley. The temperatures today were a bitter cold -12 when we started out and the Sun was just starting to rise.

I had my usual ½ banana and tea before my run and was surprised at how much energy I had today despite the fact that my calories consumed were quite low. Trail running presents more challenges than running on the road as there are various terrains and hills that I must overcome. However, it is by far my favourite type of running course to run in and even though some of the footing was treacherous at times because of the ice, it still made for a great run.

After getting home I decided to volunteer at a 5 K race in Whitby. I barely had time to have a quick shower and take my Isagenix shake before heading off again. I took 2 Isagenix snacks with me which I consumed while providing support to the many runners/walkers who were participating in the race.

For many of them, it was the first race they have ever done and I was happy to be able to lend my support at this event. I still remember teaching my “learn to run clinic in Pickering. Seeing the excitement on the faces of my clinic members when they crossed the finish line at their graduation run is something that I’ll never forget.

After the race I took my last meal replacement shake for the day with a small salad and some light dressing. I’ll have another 2 Isagenix snacks and possibly 2 hard boiled eggs or a cup of hot chocolate in the afternoon.

Tomorrow I will be running with a group of friend for anywhere from 18-20 K’s. It will be very interesting to see what kind of energy I have for that.

Here’s my eating plan for today:

5:45 AM Pre-Run: 1 cup of tea, ½ banana
7:00 to 8:00 AM: HEED electrolyte drink during run
8:30 AM: Isagenix shake with 1 accelerator
10:45 AM: 2 Isagenix snacks
12:30 PM: Isagenix shake, 1 accelerator, 1 small salad
3:00 PM: 2 Isagenix snacks
6:00 PM: Chicken breast, baked potato, beets and green beans
9:00 PM: 2 Isagenix snacks

Friday, November 30, 2007

Isagenix Day V : Avoiding Triggers!

Starting weight before Detox (Monday November 26, 2007): 163.5
Current weight (November 30, 2007): 154

Starting waist measurement: 32
Current waist measurement: 31

Starting body fat %: 14
Current body fat %: 13

As I enter the midway point of my first detox it becomes more important than ever to remain focused. I’ve already seen a remarkable change in my weight without feeling like I’m depriving myself of anything.

One of the issues I have to deal with is my inability to eat while at work. I typically see 12-14 clients at the gym and sometimes as many as 8-10 in a row. I’ve had to make some adjustments to the plan such as having my Isagenix or “Scooby snacks” at the gym in place of lunch and then having a later lunch when I get time.

Talking to my clients all day about food and their own food issues can sometimes cause me to become hungry myself when I get home. I’m proud to say that I know what my triggers are and I try my best to avoid them. It’s easy for me to sit down on the couch after work, watch TV and eat. Because I run so much I’m usually able to keep my weight in check but that doesn’t mean it’s healthy to consume so much food at night.

Watching football, my favourite sport, and eating is something that is very easy for me to do so last night instead of watching the football game, I went to bed early. Most of the time we eat out of boredom, stress or even habit, so it’s important to first identify what triggers our eating and then figure out how we can cope differently without turning to food as a comfort.

Weekends can also be tough as your normal schedule of eating is disrupted. I purposely started my detox on a Monday so that I would only have one weekend to deal with. As of today, I’m the lightest I’ve been in a few months and with 5 more days to go, I’m hoping to get less than 150 pounds by next Wednesday.

Here’s today’s schedule:

7:30 AM: Isagenix shake with 1 accelerator capsule
10:30 AM: Isagenix snacks
1:00 PM: Isagenix shake with 1 accelerator capsule, salad with light dressing
4:00 PM: Isagenix snacks
7:30 PM: Salmon, brown rice and broccoli
11:00 PM: Isagenix snacks

Thursday, November 29, 2007

Isagenix Day IV

Pre-Run weight: 155
Pre Run snack: 1 cup of tea, 1/2 banana
During Run: HEED electrolyte drink
Total distance: 7.3 Miles (11.7 K’s)

As I enter day 4 of my 9 day cleanse, I put my energy level to the test today with mixed results.

During my run I managed to keep a consistent pace but there was a strong wind and rain today. The rain didn’t bother me as much as the wind did and that forced me to dig down a little deeper to find the energy to go on.

I knew that I would be pushing myself to the brink today and wondered if my meal last night (oatmeal with peanut butter and egg whites with cheese) was going to give me enough energy to finish my run.

I’m thankful that I had my electrolyte replacement drink with me which gave me just enough of a boost to finish. When I got home though, I felt that my blood sugar was getting too low. I had a small piece of a banana and then had my meal replacement shake and accelerator capsule.

For those of you who doing this program or are about to do this program, you need to make the necessary adjustments to ensure that your health is not compromised. I don’t know too many people who are doing the kind of workout that I have been doing with regards to burning calories ( I usually burn about 1,000 calories during a usual run) If you are working out intensely for more than 1 hour though, then you may have to add a few snacks such as hard boiled eggs, ¼ cup of almonds/walnuts, ½ apple with a cheese string or 1 yogurt to ensure that your blood sugar levels are not compromised.

During these 9 days, the total calories consumed are quite low so it’s important to make sure that you have enough energy to get through your day to day activities including exercise. I know that I pushed myself harder today than I had in my previous two runs which is why my blood sugar levels were low this morning.

One of the great things about this program, though, is that I’m finding out just how much reserves I have in my “tank.” I’m figuring out just how much I can tolerate with regards to calories consumed and energy output. Learning, as long as my health isn’t jeopardized, is never a bad thing.

You have to make this detox work within your lifestyle and your energy expenditures so you shouldn’t feel bad or guilty about adding these extras into your plan if you need to.

Here’s my eating plan for today:
7:00 AM Isagenix shake, 1 accelerator capsule
10:00 AM Isagenix snacks (2)
12:30 PM Isagenix shake, 1 accelerator capsule, cabbage salad with light dressing
3:30 PM Isagenix snacks (2)
5:00 PM Chicken breast, 1 red potato, 1 cup of green beans
8:00 PM Isagenix snacks (2) with 2 hardboiled eggs

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Isagenix Day III

Pre-Run Weight: 157
Body Fat %: 13
Starting Waist Measurement: 32

Post-Run Weight: 155
Body Fat %13
Current Waist Measurement: 31.5

This morning I got up and knew that I couldn't do my run without my morning tea and 1/2 banana. For me, the whole point of doing this cleanse is to give me the ability to talk to my clients about what to expect during the 9 or 30 day program. Anyone who knows me realizes that I wouldn't endorse a product if I didn't like it myself.

With any program that you follow, as long as you do the best you can, that's all you can ask for. If you are having problems following the program 100%, then just make some adjustments so that you can follow it 80%. You will still see great results.

That being said, there are factors that influence how well you can follow a program and though my intent is to follow this as close to 100% as possible, I also do not want to sacrifice my ability to run which is why I chose to have my tea and banana this morning.

Even with my pre-run ritual, however, my legs felt very tired today. I decided to cut the run a little short (5.3 Miles) instead of my usual 7 miles which I’ll try tomorrow instead. It also didn’t help that it was -9 outside. Luckily there wasn’t much wind so overall the conditions were not too bad.

When I weighed myself after my run, I realized that I had lost 2 pounds. In contrast to yesterday when my weight stayed the same after my run, I realize that I need to drink more fluids today and that I’m in a dehydrated state.

This will be my first “Shake” day but because I cannot make and drink the shake within 15 minutes of making it, while at work, I’ll have to make a few adjustments. Here’s what my eating schedule is going to look like:

• 7:45 - Isagenix Shake with 1 accelerator capsule
• 10:30 – 2 Isagenix snacks
• 1:00 PM – 2 Isagenix snacks, 1 accelerator capsule, 2 hardboiled eggs
• 4:00 PM- Isagenix Shake
• 8:00 PM – 1 cup of oatmeal, 4 egg whites, 1 tbsp. of peanut butter, salad with light dressing
• 9:00 PM – 2 Isagenix snacks

My total weight loss after 2 complete days has been 6 pounds. Now that I’m in the shake phase of the program, it will be interesting to see the rate of my weight loss.

Evening Update:
Well, day III will be over shortly and I cannot believe how easy it has been. Thanks to all those who have followed my lead and decided to try this product as well. I'm sure you will get similar results.

Tomorrow will be my first 5 AM run and I want to make sure I do at least 8-9 Miles. I'll have another update tomorrow.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Isagenix Day II

Tuesday November 27th
Pre-Run weight: 160 pounds
Post-Run weight: 160 pounds
Body Fat %: 13

I'm about to go for a 5-6 Mile run at 6:00 AM. As promised, I didn't have my usual pre-run tea. When I weighed myself this morning I was shocked to see that I was down 3 pounds already. I went to bed early last night so that I could give my body some extra rest. I'm still recovering from my race on the weekend so the extra rest combined with the lack of food was just what I needed.


I did a nice steady 6.5 mile run today and my energy level was fine. I took a few sips of my HEED (electrolyte replacement drink) but overall I was quite happy with the run. Running, as most runners will attest to, can play havoc with your intestines so I was very curious to see how having only 1.5 hard boiled eggs in my stomach for the past 24 hours, was going to affect me.

After the run I took my first Cleanse for Life drink and my Accelerator capsule. I'm usually very hungry immediately after a run but this drink combined with the Accelerator pill seems to be keeping my hunger in check.

More updates to come.......

Afternoon Update

Well Day II is officially in the books, or will be in a few minutes as I have 2 boiled eggs and my 2 Isagenix snacks.

I have to say that it's amazing how much energy I've had considering I've eaten next to nothing for the past 2 days.
I am looking forward to eating some solid food tomorrow however. To test my motivation, here's a funny story that happened to me yesterday.

One of my favorite "snack" foods to eat are something called Chex Mix. It's something that fortunately for me, they don't sell in Canada. One of my clients knew about my weakness and bought me 2 bags of this and gave it to me yesterday. I've hidden them away in my house and though it will be tempting to eat them, I'm going to wait until well after my detox is finished before having some. I couldn't have timed this any better as the day I finish my detox is my Birthday.

Here's the breakdown today:

7:30 AM Cleanse for life with accelerator
10:30 AM Isagenix snack (2)
1:00 PM Cleanse for life with accelerator
2:20 PM Cleanse for life
5:00 PM Isagenix snack (2)
8:00 PM Cleanse for life
9:00 PM Isagenix snack (2) and 2 hard boiled eggs

Monday, November 26, 2007

Isagenix Detox Day 1

Today I started my first Isagenix cleanse and I'm already pumped about it.

As with the races that I enter, having a goal and then a plan to reach that goal makes the journey that much better. As I finished my race yesterday all I could think about was getting started with the cleanse.

I've decided to put together a journal so that not only can I track my progress but hopefully it will inspire others to try the product.

Starting weight: 163
Body Fat: % 13
Waist Measurement: 33

Day I
I took my first drink at just before 7 AM. I mixed 1/2 cup of the Cleanse for Life liquid with 1 cup of water and some ice. It didn't have any bitter aftertaste and I was able to get it down without any issues. I also took 1 capsule of the accelerator which will help to keep my metabolism and energy levels up.

My 2nd drink came at just after 12:30 and I haven't been hungry at all. I'll take another accelerator capsule and probably 1 chewable snack between now and 3:30 which is when I'll take my next drink. My final drink will come right after I leave work tonight around 8:30.

To answer the first question that is sure to be on everyone's mind. NO I haven't been rushing to the bathroom. I have noticed that I'm more thirsty though and that will surely mean a few extra trips to the bathroom as they day progresses.


I've now completed Day I of the cleanse and am very happy with the results so far. As this is my first detox, I really didn't have any idea what to expect. I haven't been hungry and my energy levels have been amazing.

Tomorrow will be an interesting test as I'm going running in the morning. To stay as close to the plan as possible, I'm going to forego my usual routine of having a cup of tea before my run. I will have 1/2 banana and will take my electrolyte drink with me.

Here's the rundown on what my eating was like on Day I:

6:30 AM Cleanse for Life Drink with 1 accelerator capsule

12:30 PM Cleanse for Life Drink with 1 accelerator capsule

1:30 PM 2 Isagenix snacks

3:30 PM Cleanse for Life Drink

6:30 PM 2 Isagenix snacks

8:00 PM Cleanse for Life Drink

9:00 PM 2 hard boiled eggs (ate one whole egg and 1 egg white) with 2 Isagenix snacks


Yesterday was one of those days which I'll bookmark in my memory bank and use it when I need to have my spirits lifted up.

The race day started off a little different because of the later race time of 10:00 AM. I was only able to eat 1/2 banana and a cup of tea before I left my house. I also had to drop my kids off at their swimming lessons and then head to Whitby for the race.

It was a little colder than I thought so I decided to wear my tights, a long sleeve technical shirt and my jacket. This race had grown in attendance each year and this year was no different as there were over 143 people entered into my race. There were others doing various races such as 5K run/walk and 10 K run/walk.

Just before I started the race I took a sports gel which is something I've never done before a race. It seemed to help as I was able to sustain the pace that I wanted for most of the race. The only part of the race where I slowed down was when I hit a strong headwind towards the end of the race.

By far, the best part of the race came with about 100 Metres from the finish as I spotted my kids. My plan was to have them run with me towards the finish line. Just knowing that they were going to be there motivated me through the tough parts of the race. As I turned the corner I picked up some speed and my kids were able to stay with me for most of it. Unfortunately my youngest was having a hard time so I slowed down to wait for him. As I did this and turned around though, I slipped on some ice and took a nasty fall. However, not even a cut hand and knee could stop me from having a huge smile on my face as my kids and I finished the race hand in hand.

I was surprised at my time as I hadn't trained for this race properly which is why I'm probably feeling more sore than I would normally feel after a race. I'm taking a much needed day off today but will resume my running again tomorrow. My 50 Mile training program is right around the corner and this race helped me get ready mentally for the training that I will be doing.

Saturday, November 24, 2007

Final race day preparations

With my race one day away now, I just finished creating my music for my mp3. As was the case yesterday, I plan on staying off my feet as much as possible today (not an easy feat when trying to watch two boys though).

Luckily for me there are some huge college football games to keep me occupied on the couch. I increased my carbohydrates slightly yesterday and will continue to do that again today. I'll also increase my fluid consumption today. It was important for me to get lots of rest last night which I was able to do.

I still have no idea what I'll wear for the race but I'm leaning towards wearing shorts if the weather is above zero. I'll have a few other outfits available just in case though. I'm sure I'll have to wear gloves and a thermal skull cap as well.

The late start for the race tomorrow throws my usual breakfast routine off a little so I'll likely have to eat something easy to digest such as a bagel or banana before heading out. I'll also take a sports gel about 15 minutes before the start of the race and another one at about the 5 mile mark. I'm going to carry two bottles of my electrolyte drink with me which will allow me to rehydrate myself during the race while avoiding the crowds at the water stations.

Here' my music playlist for the race tomorrow:
Africa - Toto
Peace of Mind - Boston
Believe - Suzie McNeil
Rihanna/Chris Brown - Umbrella remix
Unwritten - Natasha Beddingfield
Radio Nowhere - Bruce Springsteen
Learning to Fly - Tom Petty
Akon - Smack That
Running on Empty - Jackson Browne
Run - Collective Soul
Life is a Highway - Rascal Flats
The Untouchable One - Tom Cochrane
Stronger - Kanye West
Slide - Goo Goo Dolls
Let's See How Far We've Come - Matchbox 20
Skater Boy - Avril Levigne
Man in Motion - John Parr
Here I Am - Kelly Clarkson
The Way I Are - Timbaland
No Easy Way Out - Robert Tepper

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Passion won out over common sense today

When I started running a few years ago I quickly realized that running, for me anyways, is more than just about getting an amazing cardio workout. It took only one trail run to realize that I get a stress reliever, a mental workout, an escape from reality and a peaceful inner feeling all rolled up into one. It's something that is impossible to explain to people and although I've met hundreds of runners, there's only a few that I've met who truly understand what I'm talking about.

This is probably why I have such a love/hate relationship with races. On the one hand I love the race day experience but what I hate is the fact that I have to stop running for a few days prior to the race.

Whenever I'm not running it's something that I'm constantly thinking about and when I see someone running on the street, especially if it's at a time when I'm not supposed to be running, all I want to do is lace up my shoes and hit the pavement.

If I'm doing a Marathon (26.2 Miles/42 KM's)or Ultra Marathon (50 KM's) I usually take 3 days off before my race. With shorter races such as the one I'm doing on Sunday (10 Miles/16 KM's) I take at least 2 and sometimes 3 days off.

I decided to go for a shorter run today which leaves me 2 days of rest before Sunday. I probably could have used the extra day of rest, especially with my Plantar Fasciitis still not completely healed, but I needed to run today.

As for the next two days? Well, I'll be missing my running but I'll use my time to work on the mental aspect of the race. I'll be doing lots of mental imagery and trying to figure out what songs to put on my mp3 player to motivate me.

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Rainy days = fun running weather

Todays' run was a nice easy 8 miles and what made it great was the fact that I got to run with a friend and also because it was raining. I've made no secret of the fact that I love running in the rain and so does my friend so during our run today we talked about everything except the fact that it was raining.

In fact, the only time the weather did come up was when I landed in a big puddle and then when a car nearly splashed us towards the end of the run.

It's amazing how refreshing it is to run in the rain and I can't think of a better way to have my last run of the week before my race on Sunday. It will be interesting to see if I have the discipline to take tomorrow off from running though. If I don't run tomorrow then I'll probably do some light weight training or stationary biking then take days off completely.

I'm hovering right around the weight that I want to run the race in so we'll see how I am on race day.

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Why Isagenix?

As a Nutritionist, I get approached by different companies who want me to endorse their particular product. Before I'll put my stamp of approval on anything, I carefully do my research on the company and also try the product out myself. If my Bachelor of Science Degree from Ryerson has taught me anything it's that I look at everything with a suspicious eye.

Many products claim to be fantastic but when you get down to the nuts and bolts of it they fail miserably in delivering on the promises that they tell you. When I was approached, by a good friend and excellent personal trainer, about Isagenix I was of course skeptical. After doing more research and more importantly trying the product myself, I have become a quick believer in their product.

What Isagenix is all about is creating a healthy lifestyle through proper food and supplements. This is something that I preach to my clients about on a daily basis. You have to make small changes to what you are doing in order to get the best results that will last a lifetime. Many of the products that they have, such as protein bars and meal replacement shakes, are items that I recommend to my clients already. However, most of the products available in health food stores contain artificial sweetners such as aspartame or splenda. I'm very happy to say the Isagenix line of supplements do not contain these harmful substances.

What I'm most excited about though is the Detox that I will be doing next week. As a creature of habit, I'm reluctant to try anything new right before a race so I'm going to start my cleanse next week. I will be detailing my journey on this website so please stay tuned. I've been skeptical of cleanses in the past but I've already used some of the products that I'll be using on the cleanse so I'm very excited about getting started. Each of us have so much undigested food in our intestines and a cleanse will help the body get rid of these toxins. If you are eating "clean" but aren't absorbing the nutrients properly, then what's the point right? Everyone that I've talked to, who has used this product, has seen great results. This goes far beyond just losing weight because you will feel better as well.

My goal is to ensure that everyone of my clients begin with doing a cleanse. This is the best way to ensure that they will get the best results from my meal plans.

Finally, you probably have noticed that I've changed the name of my company to Cruz Control Sports Nutrition. I decided to change my companys name to create more a splash as we enter a new year.

For more information about Isagenix visit my link:

Why I love races

I still remember doing my first race 2.5 years ago. It was a Duathlon which consisted of a 2KM run, 30 KM bike and then a 7 KM run. Having never competed in anything like this before I went into the race with only one goal.....finish!

Leading up to that race I had injured my ankle so bad that I could hardly train for the month leading up to the race. The race was on a Sunday and on the Saturday I purchased an ankle brace to see if I could put any weight on it. I found that more frustrating than helpful so I decided not to use it. I kept putting off my decision to race or not and decided to see how it was on the morning of the race. Somehow when I got up on Sunday my ankle was better. Not great mind you but well enough for me to at least put some weight on it.

The only training I could do leading up to that race because of the injury was some light biking. This didn't put much pressure on my ankle so I was able to at least do something.

Running, however, is a different animal and the impact that it has on your body can be tough. Some injuries I'm able to run through but this one I wasn't.

When I got up that Sunday morning and knew that I would be able to race I couldn't get the smile off of my face. It was a long drive to Orillia but I remember thinking about how lucky I was to be able to run again.

That first race experience is something that I'll never forget and I can still see the course in my mind today. I met so many amazing people along the way and that's part of what happens on race day. You get to run with people who all understand how important running is to them. There are people from all different shapes, sizes, ages and ethnicities. There are people who are running with a baby stroller to people running side by side one another talking along the way.

Races give you a chance to fully experience what it means to be a "runner." NO you don't HAVE to enter a race to be called a runner but if you get a chance to enter a race, even if it's just one, I strongly suggest you do so. You won't regret the decision and you'll always remember the experience.

Monday, November 19, 2007

Quality vs Quantity

Did you ever have one of those mornings where you just couldn't decide what to do with regards to working out? Well, that's the kind of morning I had today. I went to bed early last night with the intention of getting up at 4 AM and going for a 5-6 Mile run. With my race coming up this weekend, there's no point in running too much, which I've been guilty of doing in the past. Instead, I want to focus on doing short, quicker runs. As I got up, though, I kept thinking about how nice it would have been to take another day off from running, then run 3 days and take the next two off. I kept second guessing my decision to get up and that was making me angrier and angrier. This went on for about 5-10 minutes before I finally got myself out of bed and went for the run.

I know that if I hadn't gone today I would have had to do something later in the day but I also know how much I hate working out/running in the afternoon. The run today was one of the better ones I've had and I think it had much to do with taking the last few days off. I also think that the weight training I've been doing has helped to strengthen my legs a little more.

My goal for this week is to stay healthy and just do some short mini-tempo runs and then rest for 2 days. It's taken me a long time to realize this but I do know now how important it is to have quality runs instead of just doing lots of long runs every week.

When it comes to my goals for the race I have three of them:
1. Ultimate Goal - This would be my personal best for this length of race.
2. Acceptable Goal- This is my time range that I've set for myself.
3. Anything less than this Goal- If I have a "bad" race I still better not finish worse than this time or I'll be disappointed.

Because I haven't done any speed work I feel that #1 is most likely not going to happen so I'm concentrating on #2.

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Enjoying my 2 days of not running

After running for 6 out of last 7 days, I did the smart thing this weekend and stayed off my feet. I decided to do some light weight lifting on Saturday and then took Sunday off completely.

With my race coming up next weekend and my lack of speed training, I realized the best thing that I can do is to rest. I'll run the next 3 days (Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday), take Thursday and Friday off, do a light walk/run on Saturday and then my race on Sunday.

It will be interesting to see how close I can come to meeting my goal time, which I'm keeping to myself.

Friday, November 16, 2007

Visualize your dreams

During my run this morning I kept thinking back to races that I've done in the past. As I was running down Westney Road I was thinking back to the Marathon I did in Jacksonville and as I climbed the hill from Hwy2 and Harwood to Salem Road I was thinking of the many hills I used to climb during my training for the Mississauga Marathon. Every step today made me think back to different races that I've done in the past 2.5 years.

Then I started to think ahead to my upcoming race next weekend. Because I've done that race and route a few times, I'm quite familiar with it and that will help come race day. I was remembering different parts of that race and where I was able to speed up in some areas and slow down in others.

Just as I try to visualize my upcoming race, it's important for you to visualize what your goals are. This will keep you focused and will allow you to conceptualize a plan that will make your goals become attainable. You really need to look into the future to see what your finished product will look like. Some of my clients keep pictures of themselves from years ago to help motivate them. Others purposely buy clothes that are 2 sizes too small and keep them as a reminder of what they want to fit into.

When I look at my upcoming race, part of what is motivating me is the fact that my kids will be there cheering me on. I know that when I see them I'll get an emotional burst and that will carry me to the end of the race. When you have long races, or long goals, it's important to have milestones which you can mark along the way. Breaking your ultimate goal into smaller goals can give you the confidence to continue in your pursuit of what you want.

I'm going to take at least one and possibly two days off and then use next week as a "mini taper" to get ready for the race next weekend. As stubborn as I am, I know that the only way that my Plantar Fasciitis will heal is by giving it some rest so that's what I'm hoping to do.

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Nervous and excited about my next race

It seems like such a long time since I actually raced with a time goal in mind. I haven't been doing any speed work so I'm keeping my goals realistic and also a secret at the same time. In fact, the last race where I went in with a time goal was the Niagara Falls 50KM race in June.

Since then, I've done 4 more races but my goals were to finish strong and I didn't have the added pressure of a time goal.

There's something about the race day experience which seems to bring out the best in me so I'm hoping that happens on the 25th. Knowing that my kids will be there cheering me on at the finish line will give me extra incentive. I know that it will be difficult to duplicate the success I had at this race last year but I still believe that I can meet my own expectations.

Sometimes it's important to challenge ourselves so that we don't become complacent. I still have memories of the last Marathon where I failed to meet my own expectations and at times I think that it has prevented me from trying to achieve my Marathon goal time. At the same time, though, I've re-discovered my love of trail running and I realized that training for a Marathon, with a time goal, and an Ultra Marathon, with my goal being just to finish, are two different animals.

Fear of failure can be just as strong as the fear of success so it's a fine line that I walk with regards to picking my goals. My mind will play tricks on me at times and will try to coax me into training for another Marathon with the goal being to erase the bad memories of Mississauga 2007. Then I remember the fun I have running in the trails and how I want to complete my first 50 Miler before attempting anything else and I realize that I've made the right decision.

As I ran this morning at 5 AM I realized that I seem to have lost some of the speed I had this time last year. It will be interesting to see just how I do next weekend.
I'm hoping to enter that race at my lightest weight possible (155 or lower) with the hope that the lighter weight will translate into a faster time. I guess we'll find out soon right?

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Trying to lead by example

One of the things I love to do when I meet new clients is to get them to guess my age. I've yet to meet someone who has been able to guess my age correctly.
When I do tell them my age I almost always get the same response and that is one of disbelief. Then, when I tell them that I was once over 240 pounds I really have their attention.

I take pride in the fact that I don't "look" my age and that has everything to do with the way I try to lead my own life. I honestly don't believe that my clients would listen to what I have to say if I didn't look healthy myself. Would you take advice from a Dr. who is 20 pounds overweight him/herself? I know I wouldn't.

This isn't to say that I eat "clean" 100% of the time but it is something that I strive for. If you reach for perfection then eventually you will achieve your goals. However, if you constantly live off yesterdays' achievements then you'll never make improvements on your health. How many people do you know who have told you that they have lost 30 pounds in the past year? However, when you look at them now they are the same way they were before. Are you impressed by the fact that they "once" looked great?

The thing that drives me is my desire to look better than I am now. An old football coach of mine you say that if you aren't getting better you are getting worse, there is no in between. I feel that I am in better shape now then I was when I was 10 years younger. My goal, though, is to look even better in 5 years than I do today.

What keeps me motivated is seeing how people look TODAY not yesterday. If someone is trying to convince me to endorse one of their nutritional products but they don't look like they are in shape themselves then they have already lost me. If I was a client looking to get healthy, I would expect that the person working with me is also committed to a healthy lifestyle.

Running has certainly helped keep me in shape but if I wasn't eating properly the majority of the time, then it wouldn't matter how much exercise I was doing.
In a few weeks I will be starting a Detox from a company called Isagenix who I'm forming a partnership with (
I can't tell you how excited I am about doing this and I will be documenting my progress on my website so keep checking back for updates.

As someone with a degree in nutritional science, I was a little skeptical about the product but the more research I did, the more convinced I was that this was something that I needed to get my clients on, as well as myself. Keep checking back here for regular updates.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Turn your "desires" into "goals!"

The difference between a desire and a goal is that a goal is more definitive. For example, my desire, since I started trail running was to complete a 50 KM race and then a 50 Mile race. It wasn't until I picked a race, however, that this desire turned into a goal.

I was able to follow a specific training program which brought me up to my goal of the Haliburton 50 KM trail race in September.

I knew that once I had completed this goal that another one would be right around the corner and that is to complete a 50 Mile race. I've picked the Sulphur Springs 50 Mile race in 2008.

All I have to do now is register for that race once and then find a training program. Most of the programs I've seen are 6 months in length which means that my training will have to start in December.

As a tune up for my training I've decided to run 2 races in the next 2 months. Both are 10 Miles in length (Whitby 10 Miler, Novemer 25th and Boxing Day 10 Miler in Hamilton). I've done both of these races in the past and had a great time doing them so I'm looking forward to doing them.

I haven't done any speed training in a long time and with the Whitby race less than 2 weeks away, now is not the best time to start. Instead my goal will just be to do the best I can on that day. Between now and then I'll just continue doing what I've been doing and then rest for 2 days prior to the race.

Monday, November 12, 2007

My body still hasn't caught up to the time change

After a good weekend of running, I decided to take today off. It was a toss-up between doing an hour of weights or an hour on the stationary bike and I opted for the bike today.
As good as I feel when I do weights, there's something about working my heart that I enjoy more.

I've found that since the clocks went back an hour, I'm having a difficult time staying up past 9 PM. I also seem to get up at hours such as 3 or 4 in the morning thinking that it's later than it is. Hopefully this will get corrected sooner than later.

Right now, as I wait until my 50 Mile training program starts in January, the goals for me are to stay healthy and try not to overdue my running. Most of the programs that I've seen online recommend starting out very slowly and that will be difficult for me. The first week has the mileage anywhere from 15 to 20 Miles per week. I realized that this past week I ran over 40 miles so I'll need to make sure that I don't burn out before my training program starts.

There are a few things I'm going to start to do differently and that is train in Miles instead of KM's and also the amount of time spent running instead of my average pace. The other thing that will be the hardest for me is to learn how to take long walk breaks.

Training in Miles just makes sense since the race will be marked in Miles. When I did my marathon in Jacksonville Florida I found that I was constantly trying to do the conversion of KM's to Miles in my head.

Utilizing time spent running instead of just running for a certain distance will also help to prepare me to run the 50 Miler. For example, one of the programs calls for running 2 Hours on Saturday and 3 Hours on Sunday. It doesn't matter what speed I go because the objective is to prepare my body to run for long periods of time. This will help keep my speed down as I won't want to run too fast for fear of burning out.

Several of the runners who I know who have successfully done multiple Ultra Marathons utilize the 20 minute running, 5 minute walking philosophy.
I've never attempted this type of training but it's hard to argue with what has worked for them. Taking 5 minute walk breaks when I usually struggle to take even 1 minute, will be one of the hardest things I'll do.

I'm lucky that I have friends who have completed many 50 Milers so I'll be leaning on them for support during my training.

Sunday, November 11, 2007

Runners everywhere today

During my run today I noticed more runners than I usually do. Obviously the colder weather didn't deter too many people today. I even passed the same runner twice as I guess we were doing opposite loops.

As the weather turns colder don't be afraid to run outside. When I first started running it was towards the beginning of fall. When I look back, I can't believe what I got myself into. For me, the winter months meant one thing....hibernation! I used to hate being outside in the winter so how was I going to go for a run in sub freezing temperatures?

I think what helped me most was the fact that I was in a running clinic and our goal race was the 2005 Boxing Day 10 Mile race in Hamilton.
The members who were in that clinic were very encouraging as I didn't know the first thing about what to wear while running in the snow. I still tend to overdress too much but I hate starting out too cold.

The months of November, December and January of 2005-2006 were cold months but I can't remember not going out for a run because of the weather. I do remember coming home from one run and having to put my hands in warm water immediately as I could barely feel them but beyond that, the running was fine.

There are many runners who actually prefer to run in the colder weather and while I'm not one of them, I do like the challenge that running in the winter presents.

Saturday, November 10, 2007

My longest run since Vulture Bait

It's hard to believe but today's 16 KM run was the longest I've run since early October when I did my 25 KM trail race in London.

I'm flirting with the idea of doing a 10 Mile race in November and another one in December and then start to train for my 50 Mile trail race next spring.

The hardest part about running 16 KM's is that it's what I call the "in-between run." I didn't have to use any gels as I opted to bring along an electrolyte drink instead (Hammer) but I didn't take enough walk breaks as I usually only do that when I'm running 20 KM's or more. The one disadvantage of running alone is that I don't stop frequently enough so that's something I have to get better at. I also ran faster than I should have to make it count as a "slow run."

Tomorrow I'll do another 16 KM's but will really try and concentrate on taking more walk breaks and also slow my pace down somewhat.

I'm going to gradually add a few KM's to my long runs each week and try to do 2 of them back to back. One of the keys to running long distance is to increase endurance and when I was training for the 50 KM run in Haliburton, I ran back to back long runs and I believe this really helped to prepare me for that race. I've been looking at several running plans for completing a 50 Mile race and most of them stress the importance of running back to back long runs.

Thursday, November 08, 2007

I won't make that mistake again

Ever since my 50K trail race I've been using my fuel belt to run with during my morning runs. Up until then, however, I didn't carry water with me if my run was 10 KM's or less. As I started to run again after that race, my morning runs have been 12-15 KM's depending on the day and how I feel. Because of that, I decided to bring water with me as sometimes those last few KM's can be tough if I'm dehydrated.

Today, for some strange reason, I decided to do my 13 KM run at 5 AM without my fuel belt. Even though I know the importance of having water with me, sometimes carrying the extra weight of the fuel belt around my waist can be tough.

The run started out fine and not having the extra weight did seem to help, at least initially. However, as I entered the last 6-7 KM's of the run, all I could think about was water. I thought about how nice it would be to have my HEED (electrolyte drink) with me today and much it would have helped. As I passed one gas station I thought about heading in there to get a drink of water but didn't.

It was colder today than it has been this week and when it gets that way it's easier to forget to drink as you don't "feel" as dehydrated as you do when the temperatures are warmer.

I wondered, though, if my "craving" for water had more to do with me not having water with me. I thought about my clients and how I tell them that I will never say you can't have a certain food. If I do that, I tell them, then it's the first thing you will want to have. It's human nature to want things that we are told we cannot have. I'm sure that this had something to do with that today.

Those last few KM's were tougher today than normal and thankfully I had some good music to listen to as I raced home. I felt like my mind was constantly trying to tell me to take a walk break today and that's something that I fought off. I know that if I had taken a walk break it would have been harder to get going again.

Needless to say, the next run I do I'll be packing my water bottle with me.

Wednesday, November 07, 2007

Take control of your greatest asset.....YOU

There are so many reasons not to choose to live a healthier lifestyle, and it's so easy to say, "I'll start changing my life tomorrow." For many people, however, tomorrow never comes.

We are influenced by so many negative things in our life such as dealing with colleagues at work, family members who not supportive and disappointments or feeling that we are being treated unfairly at work/home. This has a cumulative effect on our mental psyche and at times the stress can feel overwhelming. I'm sure the last thing that many people think about during these times is exercise and eating healthy.

I have yet to encounter a totally "stress" free day and yet I know that my stress is controlled somewhat by how I'm feeling about myself. For me, running releases any negative stress that I've been carrying. It's almost as if I'm leaving those negative thoughts on the side of the road as I'm running.

This is not to say that when I return from my run that everything is rosey. Running does allow me to think clearer, though, and I find it easier to put things into perspective. Whenever I get bad news, going for a run is the first thing that pops into my mind. It has become my therapy and I know that there are people who share this same philosophy so it helps to know that I'm not alone.

Many people try to take control of everything else in their life but sometimes forget about taking care of themselves first. This doesn't mean you have to become self-centered but the reality is, if you don't take of you who will? When you analyze the factors that are preventing you from achieving your goals, the common denominator is always the person looking back at you in the mirror.

I talk with my clients about creating a positive cycle of energy and that starts with how they are feeling about themselves. Instead of worrying about factors that we have no control over, why not take control of what you can first? It would be nice if what you do has a trickle down effect on those around you, as this can help to keep you on track. It shouldn't be your main motivation though. We all have an inner strength that must be unleashed and once it is, you will realize that the only person that was holding you back all these years was you.

Tuesday, November 06, 2007


It never ceases to amaze me at just how amazing I feel after running in the trails and today was no different.

My friend and I decided to either run from his house for a 10K or meet at the trails. The deciding factor was going to be rain. Thankfully when I got up at 5 AM to check the weather there was no rain in the forecast so it was the trails.

Running at 6:15 meant that the first part of the run was going to be in the dark but thankfully Ken brought an extra headlamp for me so off we went. The headlamp worked very well and after about 1/2 hour the Sun began to rise and we didn't need them anymore.

There came a point during the trail run, as it always seems to, where a gentle calm comes over me and I realize how special it is to be running in the trails. Today's moment came when we were on the bridge. Ken calls it the "Stand By Me Moment" and as we ran across the train tracks high above the trails the scenery around us was simply amazing. I guess there is an element of risk as we run across the bridge but that's actually the last thing I'm thinking about.

I'm thankful that the rain held off and that we were able to get in a great run. It's the best way I can think of to kickstart my running week.

Sunday, November 04, 2007

Sometimes you just have to run

I guess my body's internal clock didn't get the memo that the clocks were being put back by one hour because I got up at my "normal" time this morning (6:00 AM). The plan today was to meet up with some friends at 8:30 and do a medium run (12-15 KM's). After getting up that early though, I knew that I couldn't wait that long as my body was saying RUN now! I tried to fight off this urge for as long as I could by adding some new songs to my MP3, but this proved fruitless and eventually I went out on my own for 15 KM's.

I've found that my best time to run is within the first hour of getting up. If I wait any longer than that I feel out of rhythm. I've become such a creature of habit and I don't like deviating from what has worked for me. My routine includes a cup of green or regular tea and 1/2 banana. I find that anything more than that will causes discomfort.

My children said that they saw me running this morning which is something that really pumps me up. I've always believed in showing by example. Whenever I get a chance to let my kids see me running I'll take it. I'm hoping that my enthusiasm for running has a positive effect on them although I'm very mindful on not pushing it on them. My oldest did say that he wanted to try and do cross country running at his school next year. Of course I'll be there cheering for him.

Because I was overweight as a child, whenever I see a child who is overweight it really upsets me. My immediate thought turns to the parents and I wonder what they are teaching their children and what kind of example they are leading for them. It's so easy and tempting for parents to give into their child's wishes for McDonalds instead of teaching them the importance of eating healthy foods. Children are exposed to so many stimuli from commercials to magazines, and very few of them taut healthy eating and exercise. It's our jobs as parents to create a healthy atmospher for our children to thrive in. Are you doing everything you can to ensure that?