canfitpro Official Magazine |May/Jun 2021

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May/June 2021



The Official Magazine




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Become an Online Fitness Professional


Learn to teach, train and present online

Today’s world means that a successful fitness professional is working in a hybrid of a ‘live’ and ‘online’ environment to meet the needs of their clients and participants. As a result, there has been an increased demand for online fitness education and training. canfitpro has teamed up with international fitness industry experts to create The Online Fitness Professional Course which gives students the skills, tools and practical tips to teach, train and present online.

For registration and details, visit: * This is an online course (self-directed) † 4 FIS, 4 PTS, & 4 HWL CECs upon completion

Martina Salling @martinasalling Victoria BC

At 26 years old, Martina Salling has been in the health and fitness industry for over 8 years. It’s her biggest passion. Taking a holistic approach to wellness, Martina is in constant pursuit of becoming the best version of herself, mentally and physically, and she feels that her purpose in life is sharing this passion by guiding others to help them live the happiest, healthiest lives.


You have to understand your why. I mean the really deep one. If you don’t have this, it’s nearly impossible to follow through on your health journey. It may be helpful to follow what lights you up in life (your purpose) and think of how being healthy and fit can support your bigger goals and dreams.


I’ve always had a desire to move! I played soccer for 11 years growing up, and while I was shy in the classroom, my confidence shined when I played sports. I mostly loved competing with myself and eventually drifted away from team sports. Pursuing strength training became my next passion. I love feeling strong and fit, and I couldn’t imagine my life without fitness. I also do it for my mental health; exercise calms my brain and keeps me sane.


Want to become the next Kaizen Naturals ® Trainer and see your story in a future issue of canfitpro Magazine? Send an email to: for details.



44 Using Metrics to Develop Client Confidence

A fitness training business in Spain shares their clients’ success with the functional movement screen





Making diversity a priority can positively impact your fitness business EXPERTS WEIGH IN


Level Up Your Skills and Career

canfitpro Advisory Panel members share the most important next steps for the remainder of 2021





Take It Outdoors

Cardio zen brings the best of hiit and yoga together for a well-rounded outdoor experience










How to use body composition analysis to tackle and track fitness goals Mind-Body


Plug Into Nature

A meditative technique to recharge the heart and revitalize your energy system NUTRITION


IRON DEFICIENCY AND ITS EFFECT ON RUNNERS An Olympic athlete’s discovery of iron deficiency and road to recovery

Three steps to take back control of your business and career




BUILDING ONLINE BUSINESS SUCCESS Take action now to level up your skills in key areas to create longevity in your fitness business TRAINING



Three steps to getting strong, one leg at a time

40 Developing Maximum Aerobic Power for Runners


A family’s journey of adaptation and adjustment during the pandemic and how they became stronger and more resilient ACTIVE AGING


The Secret to Aging Gracefully

Science is proving that mindfulness can help you to live longer and age with joy EXCERPT


THE IMPORTANCE OF WRITING A BUSINESS PLAN This is an excerpt from the Business of Personal Training, by Mark Nutting

Volume and consistency are the key building blocks to cardiovascular potential


8 Let’s Make Canada the Fittest Nation on Earth - June 5th is National Health and Fitness Day

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42 Développer une puissance aérobie maximale pour les coureurs Le volume et la constance sont les deux composantes clés du potentiel cardiovasculaire














Moving businesses forward for over 90 years. Evolving with the times and doing our best to meet the needs of our clients Last spring we added coverage for “on-line training” for fitness trainers, which given the COVID-19 circumstance was more important than ever. To deal with the coronavirus and its challenges, we temporarily eliminated the requirement for 50% of training revenue from “on-line training” so that fitness instructors could continue to work while face-to-face appointments were not possible and fitness facilities were closed.* *This condition will be reinstated once the COVID-19 situation has dissipated.

Annual premium starting as low as



Risk management is all about you. That’s why Gallagher partners with you by learning the needs of your business to anticipate challenges so you can focus on the success of your mission. Apply online or learn more by visiting: © 2021 Arthur J. Gallagher & Co. | Arthur J. Gallagher Canada Limited

• General & professional liability, including abuse • Working with children • Fitness equipment protection • Fitness facility protection • In-home studio protection • CPR training coverage

Note from the COO May/June, 2021

Photo Credit: Dawn Bowman

Chief Operating Officer Maureen Hagan Vice President Kyle Tomlin Managing Editor Erin Andersen Graphic Designer Imran Mahmood Doris Li Marketing & Communications Manager Janessa Gazmen, Certification Operations Manager Barb Pontes,

The Way Forward: MO’ve Outside Your Comfort Zone I encourage you to be curious about what lies ahead and to take time to reflect and consider what is next for you and your business this year. While we are not, currently, able to exercise our minds and bodies as we have in the past, we have an opportunity to MO’ve our training focus inward. It has been my experience that doing this creates new strengths and mindsets unavailable to us when we have been working so hard on the outside world.  Remain a perpetual learner and do not let shutdowns slow you down! Now you have the time to acquire or improve your skill base for when the world reopens. Learn as much as you can to acquire the knowledge for making the best choice(s) for yourself and your business. Mastering a growth mindset will help you to get to the next levels of leadership in your life and career. A growth mindset includes being open-minded and open to change, which may require you to pivot, pivot again, and again until you ‘pirouette.’ Look beyond your own community and network so that you can gain insight as to how other industries, cultures, and countries are navigating their way out of COVID. Success leaves clues. Embrace technology so that you can maintain connection with your family, friends, clients, members, the industry, and the world. The power of connection is a mix between art and science — the art of the gathering and the science of technology. Make self-care a critical part of being a servant leader because this journey to reinvention is not going to be easy. To move forward you will need to accept that you will feel uncomfortable more times than not, but trust in yourself and the process. When you look back on your path travelled you will feel proud of the progress you have made and the challenges you have conquered.  As you navigate this path forward, it is going to be vital to remember to take care of yourself and act from a place of ‘self-care-driven leadership.’ This goes back to the familiar analogy of putting on your own oxygen mask first in the airplane. How can you be a servant leader to your clients, members, employees, colleagues, and partners if you are overwhelmed, burnt-out, and discouraged? Let this be your reminder, and your permission, to invest in yourself and to invest in your business. The investment in training and education will payback many times over in how it sets you up for success and to be a FIT PRO of the future.  Never lose focus on your goals and keep MO’ving in the direction of your dreams and the purpose of your deeper driving WHY.  Trusting in yourself and staying focused on your goals will help make the way forward feel more comfortable before you know it.

Maureen “Mo” Hagan

Chief Operating Officer

Manager, B2B Sales & Strategic Partnerships Robert Robinson, Member Experience Manager Kelly Ladd,

Fitness Advisory Panel Tony Felgueiras Paul Galloro Teri Gentes Amina Khan Ken Kinakin Tatiana Kolovou Sara Kooperman Nathalie Lacombe Sheldon McBee Ron McPhee Samantha Montpetit-Huynh Fraser Quelch Scott Wildeman Eric Wong Kai Pun Beth Yarzab To Subscribe canfitpro Magazine is published six times per year by Canadian Fitness Professionals Inc. New Professional Memberships with canfitpro are $98 per year (plus GST/HST) and renewals are $78 per year (plus GST/HST) and include a subscription to the magazine. For more information, please contact Member Services at ext. 301. Feedback or to contribute to canfitpro Magazine please contact: canfitpro Magazine 110-225 Select Ave. Toronto, ON M1X 0B5 416-493-3515 Toll Free 1-800-667-5622 Fax (416) 493-1756 Contact for questions regarding membership, conferences, and Canadian fitness resources. canfitpro is a division of Canadian Fitness Professionals Inc. Canada Post Canadian Publications Mail Sales Product Agreement No. 40783518 - Return Postage Guaranteed

FSC C148846

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canfitpro inspires fitness as

canfitpro aspires to deliver accessible

a desired career and lifestyle

learning experiences to a global audience,

to create positive change in

making fitness and mental health a part of

the lives of others.

personal wellness for everyone.



This reminder has been brought to you by the canfitpro & Rescue 7 teams. In person CPR will resume soon. Visit for more details.

canfitpro May/June 2021





Let’s Make Canada the Fittest Nation on Earth - June 5th is National Health and Fitness Day Hey Fit Pros! Did you know that National Health and Fitness Day is an annual event that arose from The National Health and Fitness Day Act, Bill S-211 ? It became law in Canada in December 2014, making the first Saturday of June National Health and Fitness Day. This year’s National Health and Fitness Day will be Saturday, June 5th! WHAT is National Health and Fitness Day? This is an initiative to challenge Canada to become the Fittest Nation on Earth, starting with making one day, the first Saturday in June, the day when Canadians get out and get active in any way they can. The focus this year, with the nations COVID restrictions, is to encourage grass-roots community-based fitness movements coast-to-coast across the country. This is also a day to celebrate Fitness Professionals and the Fitness Industry, and its role in helping Canadians move. To learn more about the history and the vision behind National Health and Fitness Day go to WHY is National Health and Fitness Day Important? This is an opportunity for Canadian fitness professionals, trainers, instructors, club and business owners and operators to get involved and help position ourselves front and center. Whether it is planning,

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organizing, and leading an outdoor workout with your neighbours from the street you live on or setting up a 15-, 20-, 30- or 45-minute workout online, you are doing your part to support the cause of helping Canada in becoming the Fittest Nation on Earth. If only 10 per cent of all Fitness Professionals decided to take part this would mean that roughly 600 microevents would take place on June 5th! That is going to make an incredible difference and impact at a community level, and together affect our country. This is our opportunity to have our voices heard and to ask our communities to support us, showing that what we do as fitness professionals matters. It is more important than ever for us all to unite and do something to make a stand for the health and wellbeing of Canadians. It is also a great way to brand yourself, your studio, or club. Remember this event is more about connecting locally on a smaller scale to fit within your region’s COVID restrictions. We hope that you will join us!

Ready to register your event? Go to How You Can Get Involved! Step 1: Go to Step 2: Register your fitness facility and event location. Step 3: Organize your grass-roots outdoor fitness event. Step 4: Download checklists, resources, and the NHFD app for class templates, workout ideas, and more! Step 5: Get social and spread the word #NHFD #NHFD2021 @NHFDcan #GetActiveCanada #fittestnation




UPDATES canfitpro is proud of our staff and their commitment to helping you, our valued members, be successful. Our staff come from diverse and varied backgrounds and bring a wealth of knowledge, expertise, and experience to their roles.

Meet Shihan

Faizer Country of birth: Colombo, Sri Lanka Cultural background: South East Asian Favourite food: Pizza Length of time at canfitpro: Three years Role at canfitpro: As a Member Experience Advisor, we support existing and aspiring fitness professional members’ inquiries by identifying and managing their needs, building sustainable relationships, introducing solutions, and providing delivery of excellent customer service. Why is what you do with canfitpro important to you? I get a sense of fulfillment in helping our members achieve their goals. Which canfitpro core value most resonates with you? “Customer Mindset” is what I value the

most. I always put myself in our members’ shoes to best assist them and ensure their satisfaction. What is your favourite form of exercise or physical activity? I like circuit workouts that are HIIT based. I also enjoy playing a variety of sports including basketball, swimming, and soccer. How do you incorporate fitness into your life? I enjoy running, going for walks with my family, working out at home, and playing basketball, soccer or swimming, occasionally. What is your two-word WHY statement? Be Inspired. What is your Super-Power? Helping others. What do you want to be remembered for? Being the best version of myself.

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canfitpro May/June 2021



SHARING A PASSION FOR HEALTH AND FITNESS Meet our PRO TRAINERS who champion fitness education in their communities

fitness along with our mental toughness and grit.


COURSES TAUGHT: PTS, FMA, CPR What is your ‘why’ behind what you do? My “why” has to do with my love for helping people. As a PRO TRAINER, I get to be a part of someone’s journey into the same career I was blessed to stumble upon as well. Becoming a fitness professional changed my life and the idea that I might get the opportunity to help someone else do the same thing is thrilling! I also get to meet the most amazing people from different backgrounds and talk about my favourite subject, fitness! How are you navigating the new fitness world since the pandemic hit? What would be your top three tips? The biggest thing I’ve learned from the pandemic is to not get too comfortable. What I mean is that adaptation is, and will always be, key.

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2. Check in with your clients often, especially if you don’t get to see them face to face. I think one powerful thing I have learned is how important a session is for our client’s social health as well. We have so much different technology to be able to communicate with our clients so I think it is wise to reach out to them often to make sure they are not only keeping up with the program, but to also make sure their overall wellbeing is in check.

1. Be ready for change and don’t think of it as a barrier but as a new variable you can include in training. For instance, I have been doing many sessions outdoors, even in the winter. This of course provides the client with a great workout, but also makes them more comfortable with being in the elements. We get to work on improving our

3. Keep learning. I always encourage fitness professionals to keep up with continuing education but lockdown conditions have presented a great opportunity to catch up on reading or possibly take an online course to keep sharpening your skills. Instagram: @trevorpickett


What would be your top three tips to navigate the new fitness world? 1. Find a guru on YouTube in the area you wish to explore and binge-watch, make notes, and brainstorm ideas.

Fort McMurray, AB

Courses Taught: PTS, FIS, HWL, FMA, CPR What is your ‘why’ behind what you do? At the deepest level, my “why” is truly about helping others - gives my life meaning and purpose. I feel like I’m doing what I was born to do. I’m a natural teacher and motivator. I enjoy sharing the things that I have learned with others. Better yet, I love helping someone to take that knowledge I have taught them and use it to bring purpose and meaning to their own life. That empowers me to keep doing what I am doing. I feel like I’m being useful in this world. I feel like I’m making a real difference. I’ve been working in the fitness industry


Courses Taught: FIS, PTS, CPR What new ‘lockdown/stay at home’ fitness rituals and routines have you adopted to maintain and work towards your goals? This was my biggest struggle. To be honest, when the lockdowns started, I went from 15 plus classes per week to zero. So, after a period of time, I started at home doing some workout videos (prechoreography workouts I used to teach). I found some strength and flexibility workouts and now I do them on a regular


Courses Taught: FIS, PTS, CPR What new ‘lockdown/stay at home’ fitness rituals and routines have you adopted to maintain and work towards your goals? I’ve been fortunate enough to have a flexible full-time job that has allowed me to work from home. I take my lunch break to work out, which I sometimes have to force myself to do. I’ve just finished my basement to have a little gym in it and and I am slowly accumulating more equipment.

2. Plan, plan, and plan some more. I have three whiteboards and two very large calendars on the walls of my office and I map out everything I do so I can stay focused.

for 21 years and looking back over those years puts a huge smile on my face. So many incredible memories. Lives have been positively changed. I can’t imagine doing anything else with my life. I’m right where I need to be.

3. Go live online, even if you start a little bit with your small circle of friends as it is the BIGGEST thing right now and you will reach a lot more people (my insights show live video is superior to any other type of post I make). Instagram: @gofitlife

basis. They are not close to what I used to do, but it keeps me active and I am having fun. What is the biggest piece of advice you can give a new fitness professional coming into the industry? Remember that Rome was not built in a day. You are just starting your journey, so be patient but be consistent. Know that you have the support of your fellow fitness professionals behind you. Instagram: @ronmcphee

What is the biggest piece of advice you can give a new fitness professional coming into the industry? Once you get the basics, figure out what your strengths are and decide where you can specialize. There are so many avenues available, so be willing to try different activities. It might be uncomfortable at first but everything gets easier with practice. Facebook: Karen Chidlow

canfitpro May/June 2021




Kathy Judson, canfitpro finalist for Personal Training Specialist of the Year 2020 Tell us about your fitness career journey. I’ve been teaching and coaching for nearly two decades. I started out as a physical education teacher who became certified in early 2000 as a way to earn additional income doing something that I absolutely loved. I started out as a group

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fitness trainer and when I made the move to London, England, then Paris, France, I realized that there was a great need for English-speaking personal trainers. I began training one-on-one with clients and was certified with EREPS, and eventually canfitpro.

My father passed away and I contracted Lyme disease, all within a matter of months, while in Europe and I needed to return to Canada. I moved to Ottawa where I opened my first personal training studio. I eventually partnered with my husband (also a canfitpro Personal Training

Specialist). I got certified as a Pre and Post Natal Specialist and soon after became pregnant myself. I moved to my hometown of Amherstburg where I opened my second personal training studio a few weeks before having my babies. I eventually got certified and registered as a holistic nutritionist. With my busy schooling and my infant babies, I decided to move my operations online in 2017. SweatBank was born and is a thriving women’s only platform that I operate with pride today. Where would you like your career path to take you? I love working with children and even though I am no longer working with the school board as a teacher, I hope to increase my future reach to encompass more children’s fitness, particularly for girls. Girls and young women need encouragement and confidence-building initiatives early on when it comes to selfcare and self-love, and fitness and nutrition know-how plays an immensely important role in their developing healthy habits and behaviours. What challenges have you overcome and what did you learn that has made you a better professional? In two decades, I’ve come across many obstacles and have lived through changing and challenging times. The market crash in 2008 made me rethink my offer to clients and I had to adapt in a way that would allow me to earn a good living as a personal trainer without reducing my rates or sacrificing my value. I went from seeking any clients to honing in on a specific clientele who were virtually untouched by the damaged economy. Eventually, I became the sought-after trainer in Paris that many of the English-speaking embassies and expatriate diplomats would hire for their workplace training. This eventually evolved to including their spouses and

friends, and soon I had a thriving mobile personal training business. Similarly, when I delivered twins and opened a new studio in a new town within a matter of weeks from each other, this challenged me and forced me to change how I needed to operate. This was the beginning of SweatBank. Not only did I have clients all over France, England, and Canada who kept telling me “I wish you were closer!”, but I also had two tiny babies who needed me at home. Getting to the studio at all hours to train clients was no longer possible. So, I used my time to begin to record online workouts that I added oneby-one to my platform for my clients to view whenever they’d like, rather than waiting for my availability to match theirs. It turned out that there was a large market for this with the same needs as mine; the flexibility to work around their busy lives. What is the best piece of advice you have ever received? In business, you have to give in order to get. Since hearing this advice, I’ve learned that if you want to gain business, you have to give value. I offer lots for free whenever I can and know that it will come back to me in some way and somehow. With this advice in mind, I also do charity fitness events a few times a year. This not only contributes to great causes, but it’s fun for current clients and gives exposure to both the cause and the business, so it’s a winwin all around. Now that you have reached this point in your career, what piece of advice would you give your younger self? I like to live in the present and truly have no regrets. Every “mistake” I’ve made plays a role in my current success. However, if I had to, I would say to myself, “explore your passion in school.” I opted to study what I was getting good grades in. In

University, I graduated in English Literature and Psychology. This today has likely given me a vantage point in terms of writing marketing materials and my blog, as well as learning to connect with my clients. It has its purpose in my current career. However, back then I loved sports, fitness, nutrition, and anatomy. That was, and is, my passion, but at the time I didn’t realize your passion could be your career. I thought it was more of a hobby. I would tell my younger self to include more of my passion in my formal education. I’m thankful that I can rely on canfitpro to facilitate my professional education since my University studies. If you were to write a motto for yourself, what would it be? Be a goal digger!! Seek out new challenges, strategize and plan for them, assess along the way and reward yourself once achieved. Why did you decide to nominate yourself for the Fitness Professional of the Year Award? I never win anything, to be honest, but I love to try. I’m very proud of what I have developed and the longevity of my career. I get daily reminders that I am on the right path when I see my clients’ lives change for the better. Whether it’s through lifechanging weight loss or learning to build essential healthy life habits, my clients make me feel proud of them, as well as myself for creating all that I’ve built. Websites: Email: LinkedIn: Facebook: additionalnutritional/

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canfitpro May/June 2021



BUILDING RESILIENCE AND EMOTIONAL INTELLIGENCE Dr. Rumeet Billan Reminds us to be flexible and CHALLENGE automaticity. Can you describe what it is that you do within the fitness industry? I have been working with people across industries, and specifically in the fitness industry, for over a decade, helping them to develop their psychological resilience and emotional intelligence. As a leader in the learning and development space, I have been able to do this through courses, workshops, online classes, assessments, and simulations. Just as fitness professionals help others train and build their physical strength, I help to build mental, emotional, and psychological strength. I have incredible respect for fitness industry professionals because I know that by helping people build their physical strength, the benefits overlap with mental and emotional well-being. I

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love collaborating with canfitpro and have had the opportunity to create customized programming for the fitness industry. How long have you been active in this role? I have been operating my own firm for 17 years. While doing so, I completed my PhD at the University of Toronto, and have led various initiatives to improve the quality of education, learning, and development in Canada and abroad. Research is also at the heart of what I do, and in the last three years I have led two national groundbreaking studies: The Tallest Poppy (in partnership with Thomson Reuters) and The Canadian Happiness at Work Study (in partnership with the Canadian Mental Health Association).

What do you love about what you do? I love being able to transform and shift perspectives and viewpoints as it relates to someone’s personal, mental, and emotional strength. The beautiful part is that resilience is a muscle and skill that can be developed. I love seeing someone stand tall because they know that they can rely on their strengths and abilities to get through the challenges that they face. I love being able to play a role in that. I often say that I work with leaders from Kindergarten to CEO, and to see people not only reach their potential, but to exceed their own expectations is a beautiful thing.

What is the biggest mistake you have made and how have you learned from it? The biggest mistake that I have made, and if I am being completely honest, one that I continue to make, is not taking time out for myself. I am learning from it and actively working on implementing strategies to recover from daily stressors. I have experienced burnout (mental, emotional, and physical exhaustion) and fatigue (the cost of the mental effort and control required to complete tasks). I know that if I don’t pause, I won’t be able to do what I love to do. I won’t be able to make an impact. I also know that if I don’t pause, my body will pause for me. This has taught me to be proactive versus reactive as it relates to taking care of myself and making time to slow down. What types of transformations have you made as a result of COVID-19 and how has it changed you as a leader within your industry? There have been several transformations that I have made because of COVID-19. One thing that has truly stood out during this time is that we have no idea what someone else may be experiencing

and/or going through. As a learning and development professional, I keep this in mind when designing a program or a session – especially in an online setting. The last year has been challenging for many and being mindful of this is important. I have been able to experience the power of creating enriching experiences online, and the privilege of not having to commute as much as I did before (which has been eye-opening for me!). I am encouraged to reprioritize, and the pandemic has emphasized that for me. What do you believe sets certain fitness professionals apart from the rest? People speak a lot about resilience and what this suggests is that a person bounces back to the level of functioning that they were at prior to experiencing the challenge/setback. However, I focus on redefining resilience. We can not only bounce back to the same level of functioning, but we can learn, grow, and find meaning and value in the challenges that we face. We refer to this as benefitfinding and thriving. I believe this, coupled with emotional intelligence, is what sets certain fitness professionals up for longterm success.

What advice can you share to those new to the fitness industry to be successful? Find a mentor whose story and journey you admire and respect (this has nothing to do with position title). Be open to learning from their experiences. It can save you a lot of time, headache, and heartache. What advice can you share to those who have been working in the fitness industry for years to maintain success? Life happens, and if the pandemic has taught us anything it is to be flexible in our approach. We are so used to doing things in a certain way that we can fall into automaticity and not be open to change. Be flexible and challenge the automaticity.

Website: E-mail: Twitter: @RumeetBillan

ARE YOUR CLIENTS READY TO PURSUE ACTIVITY AND EXERCISE? HOW DO YOU KNOW? Physical inactivity is a leading contributor to many health-related problems. Too often the solution is to increase physical activity and exercise. Many individuals do not know where to start or what to do and they simply start exercising. But we know that exercise often leads to injury, which increases physical inactivity. Your job as a fitness professional is to break this cycle, and we can help. Learn how our approach to movement can help you better identify strategies for long-term exercise success. A Common Sense Approach to Evaluating Movement is a one-hour introduction to our way of looking at movement through the lens of function. This course is an overview of the movement philosophy and principles that drive our company. It also serves as a primer on the Functional Movement Screen, our tool for fitness professionals like you.

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canfitpro May/June 2021



REPRESENTATION MATTERS Representation in the workplace is a visible metric that fitness businesses will have to review regularly to avoid their members bringing attention to this unmet key performance indicator. This metric is likely the most noticeable to every visitor that walks into your facility, so it is not a metric that should be deferred, rather it should be a priority for your company to be recognized as a promoter of diversity. Creating measurable goals to build and maintain a diverse employee base will have many benefits for your business, and it also sends a clear message to your members that representation matters. Diversity Has Its Benefits Building a diverse team can help your fitness business in many ways, such as employee engagement. Companies that invest in developing a diverse and inclusive team generally receive a higher employee satisfaction rating and an overall higher net promoter score as a desired employer to their family and friends. A diverse workforce is known to be more innovative and better able to solve problems. The company is also perceived by its customers and partners to deliver better customer service and to have stronger brand credibility. Visible diversity becomes a people magnet for potential employees and new customers.

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Companies that lack diversity in their employee base are likely to encounter difficulties in representation growth and can also negatively impact their competitive advantage in a crowded marketplace. Consequently, voices at the table are often directly or indirectly silenced and a single narrative emerges that diversity is more about image and not about influence. Diversity In Your Strategy Before revamping your existing hiring strategy, the first step should be to conduct an audit of what you have in place now. A standard SWOT Analysis, with a diversityfirst approach, can help you identify the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats in your current hiring processes. It is important to keep what you are doing well and quickly stop what you are not doing well, and take the necessary steps to improve it. Trying to fix everything at once can delay the changes that can be made now. It is best to select one or two areas to focus on that can provide measurable and tangible success. If you have diversity on your team, start highlighting that and promote your space as a welcoming environment for racialized communities. When diverse groups see employees that look like them in your

space, it becomes an attractive career destination and can increase your diverse candidate pool. You can also ask your racialized employees to share new job postings with people in their communities. It is okay to be intentional and to share who you want to attract. Another strategic implementation can be to create a diverse hiring committee to make the hiring process a collaborative effort. This approach invites more diverse perspectives and differences of opinions. Building a diverse hiring committee should include individuals with both demographic (e.g., age, race, religion, abilities, and gender) as well as functional (e.g., all levels of employees in the organization) differences. Having diversity in your recruitment team will also make diverse candidates feel more comfortable applying for jobs and during interviews. Diversity In Hiring Diversifying representation in your fitness business begins with formal hiring policies and procedures, best practices, and proven systems to support the organizational objectives. Best practices should include how to attract the candidates you want to hire, including attracting the most qualified for the job. Implementing a diversityfirst hiring strategy can support hiring

MAKING DIVERSITY A PRIORITY CAN POSITIVELY IMPACT YOUR FITNESS BUSINESS By Robert Robinson & Emily Dobrich managers make decisions in the best interest of the organization. Along with the strategy should come formal training for hiring managers to avoid prejudice and bias while recruiting for new roles and a performance measurement created with achievable and measurable targets.

because they are the primary gateway to the organization. Diversity training can help hiring managers and interviewers understand and identify common biases which may influence decisions they make during the screening and selection of potential candidates.

Hiring with diversity as a priority will also help organizations build a diverse leadership pipeline for future promotions. There are significant benefits when employees and managers share the same or similar racial background. This type of professional relationship can result in better interpersonal connections and can serve to improve mentoring and identify positive role models. Racialized leaders can also become advocates and cultural translators for employees, ultimately supporting professional development and access to open opportunities in the organization. Diverse representation is important at all levels of the organization, from the front desk to the boardroom.

Diversity hiring should be about bringing in different perspectives, ideas, vantage points, and considerations into the organization. Training will help hiring occur based on merit and not preference. The objective of diversity training is to remove potential barriers and biases and support the objective of improving overall representation in your space.

Diversity In Training One of the greatest tools for success in building a diverse team and understanding how diversity can make you better is a solid organizational training plan. Diversity training is important for everyone at all levels in a company to complete, but it is especially important for hiring managers

Robert Robinson is the Manager of B2B Sales & Strategic Partnerships at canfitpro and a certified Personal Training Specialist for over seven years. He led the revision of the current edition of canfitpro’s Personal Training Specialist program and now oversees the B2B Team. Robert is an experienced sales professional with over 15 years in the financial and fitness industry.

Implementing a culture of learning within your organization, specifically about diversity, is not unique to hiring managers or the senior leadership team, rather it is important for everyone in the organization, without exception. Making diversity a priority in your fitness business has many tangible benefits and will help your business attract great talent, more customers, and diverse strategic insights. Start today with a simple plan to implement diversity in your strategy, hiring, and training, and begin to see how your business can benefit instantly.

Emily Dobrich works at canfitpro and as a group fitness instructor. She has concurrent degrees in nutrition and kinesiology as well as a Master of Education. Emily enjoys sharing knowledge and contributing to, and collaborating on, projects and initiatives concerned with creating positive change through health, fitness, education, and community development. canfitpro May/June 2021


FITNESS BUSINESS JOURNAL Keeping club and boutique owners, operators, and managers informed with industry news, trends, and insights.








Creating a WorryFree Experience


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“HOW CAN I KEEP MY EQUIPMENT CLEAN AND MY MEMBERS/PATRONS COMFORTABLE WHILE USING THE EQUIPMENT?” 1. Equipment cleaning. Be sure to check that the approved cleaner being used on programmable cardio machines will not damage the console. It is common that touchscreens, basic LED overlays and buttons be cleaned with a milder, COVID-19 approved product to ensure they don’t become damaged over time. Equipment providers can commonly recommend approved products through their service departments. At Matrix Fitness, Customer Technical Support (CTS) has already seen a number of cases where very corrosive disinfectants have been sprayed onto the machines, causing some earlier than usual wear and tear. Matrix’s approved cleaners, disinfectants, and lubricants can be found at the following link -

2. Cardio equipment technology and signage. Most connected cardiovascular machines in 2021 can display messaging directly on the console. This would of course include facility advertising or reminders of any kind that you would want your members to see. It would be advisable to include reminder messaging or instructional details regarding the user’s responsibility for cleaning. For strength and cardio machines without this type of console, be sure to develop appropriate signage. It is one of the great ironies that the fitness industry is the only industry that teaches patrons the standards around cleaning after use. I cannot think of any other industry that does this. 3. Try something new if you can. As we all know, the COVID-19 pandemic changes almost weekly, if not daily, on many fronts and we are all forced to react in some manner to adhere to protocols, but more importantly, to keep members coming through the doors. Realizing that equipment function and cleanliness is only a part of the entire

picture, it is still very critical to advertise and promote all of your facility’s efforts in making the experience as comfortable and worry-free to your members as possible. From an equipment supplier’s standpoint, we are always available to help with new additions of equipment if at all feasible, but there are other ways we can help too. • Inquire with your supplier or dealer on having the local equipment rep come by and offer workshops to bring your staff up to speed on equipment function and cleaning procedures. If in person is not possible, a virtual presentation would work. • If equipment in the facility/ gym requires repair or preventative maintenance and you are interested in adding any number of pieces of equipment, inquire as to any available package pricing that your supplier can offer. • Supplier-branded signage as a turnkey option is available from Matrix Fitness, and may be from others. • Take advantage of financing and lease options if it is critical to add equipment for member retention. This can be factored into your operational budget and many suppliers can work closely with you to find the right fit for your budget. Matrix Fitness Canada launched its equipment rental program during the pandemic. For more information on any supporting services or equipment, please reach out to or find us on Instagram and Facebook @matrixfitnesscanada. Ben Mcginn is a Matrix Fitness representative in Southern Alberta, and former service technician. Ben has extensive experience in supporting organizations that offer fitness. His perspective in unique and skillset highly qualified in supporting facilities of all sizes. You can reach Ben at

canfitpro May/June 2021



Create a Winning Instagram Fitness Profile

Five must-haves to start your relationship with the clients you want to serve By Sean Greeley

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IF YOU’RE GOING TO SUCCEED ON INSTAGRAM (AND ATTRACT NEW FOLLOWERS, LEADS, AND CLIENTS AMONG THE 900 MILLION PEOPLE WITH INSTAGRAM ACCOUNTS), YOU NEED A STRONG ACCOUNT PROFILE. The challenge: You only have 150 characters, room for one picture, and a few call to action buttons. Your profile needs to attract attention, be professional, make viewers feel welcome and confident in your authority, and trust you.

In their original photos, the images are far away. You can’t see their eyes, they aren’t smiling, and the background is distracting. The after photos are well lit, close up, and they all have genuine smiles. 2. Upgrade your bio’s title. It only takes a few seconds for someone to decide whether they’d like to follow you or not...and you have only 150 characters total to make your case.

Summary Start with a great photo. Be professional, make sure you are close up enough to see your eyes, smile, and it’s light enough.

NOTE: PLEASE don’t make the very common mistakes that hurt your business and brand with your profile. We’ll call these out in the article below.

For example, one massage therapist used a picture of himself looking like a bodybuilder. That sets up a disconnect of expectations for the viewer, and they may move on rather than figure it out. Your profile photo needs to represent you in a way that feels trustworthy. That means they need to see you clearly, so take a very clear head-shot. Have a warm and/or enthusiastic/energetic smile. Have the photo close up enough to show your eyes (they’re the windows of the soul, after all). For inspiration, here are some before and after Instagram profile photos that work.

5. Offer them a free gift. What does your audience NEED? Leverage Instagram to be a list-building tool by giving a free gift, typically a discount or something actually free. This is your opportunity to capture email addresses. (All sales happen with emails.) Your gift can be anything that your ideal customer would find valuable: ebooks, PDFs, checklists, video tutorials, and discount codes.

Whew! Can you really do that? Yes, you can! And with the right guidance, setting up a winning profile is simple and easy to execute.

1. Your Instagram Photo: Think smiles, eyes, close, light. Too many fitness professionals fail to attract viewers with their photo. The lighting is dark and shadowy, and they’re far away from the camera. They use a selfie (that’s unprofessional), or they don’t send the right message.

ability to add a physical address. We recommend that if you are a brick-andmortar facility that you upgrade to an Instagram business account and list your address.

Use the 150 characters to hammer home the five keys to your bio: Capture attention by saying who you serve and what benefit you provide, give your contact info, and offer a free gift to capture email addresses. To stick out in a sea of sameness, it’s going to be important to tell them why they should follow you. Make sure your bio tells the problem that you solve and the benefit the client will enjoy. Example: “New mom home workouts in under 20 minutes with one piece of equipment.” 3. Answer who your account is for. Be specific as possible on Instagram because, as they say, “the riches are in the niches!” It’s true. Fitness is a massive category on Instagram with millions of accounts. You will have a better chance connecting with the right people if you are specific with your niche, for example, you might be a wellness coach for postpartum mothers. 4. How can they contact you? Too many people neglect contact info. Set up a contact button and use it to make it easy for your followers to buy your product or service. The business account offers the extra

Following these steps will set your profile apart and start your relationship with the clients you want to serve. Want to learn more about how to use Instagram to build your fitness business? Register for our free training “The 60-minute Instagram Marketing Guide for Fitness Business Growth in 2021” AND discover seven types of content that powerfully builds your brand on Instagram, PLUS learn the proven hashtag strategy to get your content ranked and discovered at

Sean Greeley, Founder and CEO of NPE, has an unrelenting passion for empowering fitness business owners to grow their business and create the life they want. Since 2006, NPE has helped over 45,000+ fitness professionals and studio owners to grow their business, take home more money, and have the time freedom to enjoy it.

canfitpro May/June 2021



Post COVID-19 Fitness Trends A look at what can be done to ensure we get back to business By Scott Wildeman AS I SIT DOWN TO DRAFT THIS ARTICLE, IT IS AMAZING TO THINK IT HAS BEEN ONE FULL YEAR THAT WE HAVE BEEN LIVING WITH COVID-19. COVID has had an incredible impact on our business, our customers, and our colleagues. Our industry has been disproportionally impacted by this 26 canfitpro May/June 2021

pandemic, with an average facility losing $15,000 per month after government supports. However, with every challenge comes opportunity. So, the optimist in me looks to the future, while taking some lessons from the past year. While COVID-19 has had numerous

negative impacts to our industry, it has also brought our industry closer together. I am so proud to see how fitness professionals have banded together. Competitors are working together for the common good - leaning on each other as we continue to “pivot” on what seems like a monthly basis, depending on what the restrictions of the day lay out.

very short lived. We simply cannot afford to have a high level of attrition if we are to thrive in the new world. In order to be set up successfully for behaviour change, ensure you have a system - a CRM (customer relationship management) to ensure people do not fall through the cracks. Ensure your fitness professionals are focused on meeting the client where they are at, focused on the client’s “why”, and can progress or regress their programming accordingly. Ensure you have a strong community and social element, as that is what people have been dearly missing for the past year. The new world will also see a blend of in-facility and remote fitness. Remote fitness is here to stay. There are so many benefits to keeping this infrastructure in place post COVID. Clients find it very convenient and can keep their lifestyle habits in place regardless if they can make it into a facility that week or not. If you see weekly attendance starting to slip, ensure that a remote follow up is in place to keep your customer engaged and on track. This really has been a missing piece of the puzzle for so long. And finally, we will continue to see collaboration in our industry. There is no doubt that competition will make us all better, but we should be meeting on a regular basis to continue to discuss our industry and share best practices. FIC will continue to host both national and provincial meetings post pandemic, with a focus on continuing to advance the interests of our industry. We will continue to partner with government, insurance, and other industries to provide as many opportunities for Canadians to become active in their communities. Thank you for your dedication, professionalism, and ongoing support. To learn more about our association, please visit and join as a member.

So, what is in store for our industry post COVID, when people are vaccinated and are no longer afraid to venture out? Where our health care system is no longer under a threat of strain? Well, for starters, I believe we are poised to see a huge influx of returning and new customers alike. However, there is a risk here. We need to ensure our

onboarding systems are in place and we are truly focused on behaviour change. As an association, we are lobbying for Prescription to Get Active (the start of the journey), along with fitness services as a medical expense (the middle of the journey), but it is up to each and every fitness business and professional to be focused on sustainable behaviour change. Otherwise, our rebound will be

Scott Wildeman is the Senior VP Fitness and Operations for GYMVMT in Alberta Canada. A dynamic leader that has helped build one of the largest PT and GF teams in Canada, his areas of expertise include Personal Training sales and business practices, career development and Human Resources.

canfitpro May/June 2021


Fight back against


Inactivity is a silent pandemic with significant long-term physical, mental, social, and emotional health impacts. Vulnerable populations are especially at risk for significant health problems. Before the pandemic, only 1 in 5 adults in Canada met the physical activity guidelines set by the World Health Organization. During the pandemic, sedentary behaviour rose considerably, while access to sport, recreation and fitness was restricted to minimize the spread of COVID-19. GoodLife Fitness founder and CEO David Patchell-Evans is working with social good consultants impakt to launch Change for Good Health, a project with a singular purpose: to ensure that all people living in Canada have safe, equitable, and inclusive opportunities for physical activity. Change for Good Health brought a group of multi-stakeholder experts together in a series of roundtable discussions focused on how physical activity influences, and is influenced by, equity, mental, social, and emotional health. The vision is to collaborate to create greater access to opportunities for people living in Canada to be more active, for their physical and mental health and wellbeing.

Our goals for action: • Cooperate more across sectors. Accomplish more together by building the tools and partnerships to share lessons and best practices across the health and wellness sector. • Democratize fitness. Build sport, recreation, physical activity programs with accessibility and inclusion in mind. • Make physical activity approachable, relevant and relatable. Set achievable goals for physical activity and involve marginalized communities in developing programs. Make sport and physical activity a welcoming and safe space for all. • Train the trainers. Ensure those who deliver programming are equipped to address the social and mental health impacts of physical inactivity. • Start early with health literacy. Incorporate movement at an early age and work to build a foundation in health literacy that will set people up for success.

The full Change for Good Health discussion paper will be available this spring at

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“I was charging less than other fitness studios because I was new and wanted to break into the market. I nearly went out of business. An NPE flash sale saved me, Now I’ve grown to 150+ clients and $27k+ in revenue thanks to NPE.” — Suzy Kaitman, The Ballet Lounge, Ltd., Vancouver, BC “I’m super happy at our progress. In 8 months we’ve grown from 7 clients to 50 clients and $2k to $20.7k per month. There have been plenty of good lessons along the way ... and I know I’m only scratching the surface. Thanks to everyone in the group for their feedback and to all the NPE coaches for their continued mentorship and support.” — Rui Saraiva, Body Restore, London, ON

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Experts Weigh In



MAUREEN HAGAN Levelling up your skills and career as a FIT PRO for the remainder of 2021 comes down to these seven principles: 1. Be curious about what lies ahead and take time to reflect and consider what is next for you and for your business.  2. Remain a perpetual learner. Do not let shutdowns slow you down! Now you have the time to improve your skill set for when the world reopens. Learn as much as you can to acquire the knowledge for making the best choice(s) for yourself and for your business.  3. Master a growth mindset to get to the next levels of leadership in your life and career. A growth mindset

30 canfitpro May/June 2021

includes being open-minded to change, which may require you to pivot, pivot again until you “pirouette.” 4. Look beyond your own community and network so that you can gain insight as to how other industries, cultures, and countries are navigating their way out of COVID and on to the next normal.  5. Embrace technology so that you can maintain connection with your family, friends, clients, members, the industry, and the world. The “power of connection” is a mix of technology and human relationships.  6. Make self-care a critical part of being a servant leader. The road to reinvention is not going to be easy. To follow this path it is going to be vital to remember to take care of yourself and act from a place of “self-care-driven leadership.”  7.

Never lose focus of your purpose (your deeper driving WHY) and keep MO’ving in the direction of your dreams.

SAMANTHA MONTPETITHUYNH The most important next step in levelling up your skills is to accept that this pandemic is not going to go anywhere, anytime soon,- and will have a permanent impact on how we deliver services to our clients. 1.

Push yourself outside of your comfort zone. If you are waiting for things to go back to normal, you are wasting precious time. Online training and coaching are here to stay, and this is the PERFECT time to take your business there. Everything is going online and so should you, to some capacity. Whether it’s fully online or creating a hybrid model once gyms start to open back up. If there is one thing that this pandemic has taught us, it’s that nothing is for certain, and you do not want to put all your eggs into one basket.

BETH YARZAB My mission is to make fitness welcoming and inclusive to all bodies. For any canfitpro member who also envisions a kinder fitness industry, I recommend studying resources that help you unpack your bias and privilege while building skills such as curiosity, empathy, and advocacy. I’m reading Radical Belonging by Lindo Bacon, PhD. Dr. Bacon also authored Health at Every Size, which influenced the body positivity movement through its evidence-based research. To check my thin privilege, I attended the Braving Body Shame online conference, and I am a member of the Fit Fatties Facebook Group. I benefit from hearing and reading the lived experiences of folks in larger sized

2. Invest in yourself. It’s scary bringing your business online or doing something different, but it’s also scarier trying over and over to do the same thing and expecting a different result. That is the definition of insanity, not growth. Although you may be an expert in fitness, this does not mean you are an expert in “business” or creating a business online. Get the help you need by hiring someone who has done what you want and has a proven method so you can spend your time doing what you do best. 3. Stop trying to be everything to everybody. Some may say the fitness industry is “saturated” online, but is it? There is only one YOU and the reality is people are not buying fitness and meal plans - they can get those for free online. They are buying YOU. Be yourself and try your best not to compare or be someone else. Just because something works for someone else, does not mean it’s going to work for you.

bodies. These are important to me because while I’ve struggled with my body image, I am in a straight sized body. I don’t really know what it’s like to experience oppressive weight stigma. Hearing stories from others is helping me make my fitness classes and training sessions more inclusive. A career catalyst for me happened when I suggested programming topics on body positive fitness and body image to the management team at canfitpro. While I was hesitant to put my ideas forward, the supportive stakeholder response built my confidence to push for more. To up-level your career, take a chance to voice your opinion about the things that are important to you. Sharing my ideas has led to collaboration with my canfitpro colleagues to improve size diversity representation and ongoing content that offers a weight neutral perspective to fitness.

canfitpro May/June 2021




THREE STEPS TO TAKE BACK CONTROL OF YOUR BUSINESS AND CAREER By Brady Johnson BEING A TRAINER AND AN ENTREPRENEUR CAN BE A BIT OF A ROLLER COASTER. The past year may have felt like you were perpetually on a roller coaster stuck in super speed, or one that was stuck and not moving at all. Though the effects and restrictions of COVID-19 have not disappeared fully, you can still take back control and find purpose, stability, and even find joy while riding the roller coaster of chaos in your training career and business. In order to conquer the proverbial roller coaster, you will have to release your fear of it. You have the knowledge, education, and skill to persevere and push through and can equip yourself with more great training offered by canfitpro. However, all the training in the world won’t matter until you confidently put it to use and take action with these three steps.

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1. Release Fear Whether you feel like you are spinning out of control, or stuck not making progress, the first step is to step back and pause. Busy action or remaining frozen aren’t profitable or sustainable strategies to ‘wait out’ the pandemic. Take a step back and remind yourself why you started your career in the fitness industry in the first place. Was it to help others? To follow a passion? To make a difference or to grow financially? You won’t be able to do any of these things without being intentional. A different version of the world will require a different version of yourself to show up for yourself and others; one that might be unknown, scary, and downright uncomfortable. Good news - there are plenty of opportunities, examples, and lots of training available. If other trainers can pivot, you can too! Sit down and take some time to think about why you got started, what your

clients need right now, and what it would take to show up powerfully for them (putting all your fears and inadequacies aside). People need your services more than ever right now. What small steps can you take to serve them? Where do you feel unqualified? How can you gain knowledge? Doing what you did pre-pandemic, or doing nothing, aren’t options. Find your inner resolve and commit to getting back in the game. This might mean pivoting to online, training friends and family (*not* at a discounted rate), finding a new space, or even a new company to train with. You may want to offer a new short term challenge and enroll the participants into a long term program, or a temporary program to retain them until restrictions have been lifted. If you are struggling financially, you may want to determine the dollar amount that you need to recover financially and work backwards. Perhaps

higher ticket, individualized training would better suit your goals, even if it is something new or unknown to you. 2. Show Up Powerfully Once you have some clarity, choose to show up powerfully for yourself and others. This might mean resetting your own mindset and ensuring that you are training yourself and strengthening your mental and physical resolve before investing in your clients. Clients will be drawn to someone who portrays what they desire in their own life. For many, this is stability, health, confidence, and consistency. Up-level your skills in marketing, sales, and build a program out but avoid waiting until it is perfect or done to launch it. Spend time daily in reaching out to prospective clients and leading others to your program. Invite people into a fitness and health journey with you and remember that while there may be plenty of trainers doing what you do, none will be quite like you. You must first believe in your services before being able to sell others on them.



you are a business owner, take advantage of business grants to access funding and utilize more downtime to educate yourself in areas of leadership, finances, sales, and marketing. There are plenty of resources available for free or at low cost, such as podcasts, books, canfitpro events and courses, and other business resources. 3. Embrace The Chaos The only constant in life is change. Be prepared for whatever comes your way and commit to finding a way, rather than an excuse (just as you would teach your clients). We don’t know what the future holds, but we do know people need your help more than ever, and that they will continue to need your guidance and services throughout the pandemic, not just after or when the mask mandates end.

Help others embrace hard things by embracing them yourself. Finding joy, purpose, and opportunities are entirely possible during this time; but only when you let go of fear and choose to commit to yourself, your clients, your business, and your future by choosing to enjoy the ride and thrive in the face of the unknown. P.S. Business Made Simple is my favourite business podcast. The book Mindset by Carol Dweck changed my life, and everyone should read Sell or Be Sold by Grant Cardone.

Brady Johnson is the owner of Encompass Fitness Studio, a boutique fitness studio in Saskatchewan. Over the pandemic, she has led her team and her clients powerfully by quickly pivoting, offering online services, and expanding into rural communities; claiming that anything is possible with the right mindset.



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Take action now to level up your skills in key areas to create longevity in your fitness business By Tony Felgueiras , FIS For many fitness professionals, the “business” of fitness prior to 2020 was mostly dependent on the number of classes you could sustain or the number of personal training clients you could retain at a studio location. Since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, the way individuals participate in exercise has evolved and with it the demand for fitness professionals to adapt and grow. Fitness professionals have had to develop or level up their skills in sales, social media, technology, and entrepreneurship to sustain longevity through a constantly evolving industry.

34 canfitpro May/June 2021

My personal online business continues to evolve, but like many, getting started was an intimidating step. The following points are key areas I feel have been most important for my business success in this new fitness landscape.

Start with what you have. Begin with what you have now; an iPhone, laptop, natural light, zoom, etc., and as you build your business and make money, then you can invest in upgrading your gear.

Get started now. The longer you wait, the further behind you become. Each step or action you take builds experience, confidence, and competence. Learn on the fly while building your business and allow yourself to make mistakes and course correct along the way. Don’t wait for everything to be perfect. There will always be room to improve.

You are your brand. Unlike instructing at a big box gym or boutique studio where you’re part of a brand, starting your own business means that you are now the brand. Present yourself and your offering in an authentic and clear manner in your sales and marketing to help potential clients relate and connect to your mission, vision, and values.

Be consistent in your online presence. If you’re not posting or sharing frequently, you don’t exist in the online world. The more you show up in peoples’ newsfeeds, stories, etc., the more trust and connection you build with your viewers. The more that people know you, like you, and trust you, the more likely they will be to want to work with you. In my opinion, having a strong social media account is more important than a website because a strong social presence shares the story of the individual behind the business. Share frequently and allow yourself to be seen and stand out among the sea of online trainers. Make “social media” social. Many people make the mistake of using their social pages exclusively as a billboard, only posting promotions or ads for their services. Two keys to creating connection on social media are providing value and engaging with messages and comments. Focusing on conversation and sharing value to your followers through tips, mindset, workout ideas, etc., build trust and connection. Value paired with personal connection leads to a higher likelihood that a potential client will want to work with you. Learn sales. Without sales you don’t have a business. YOU are the product and you are responsible for asking people to pay money for your experience. Practice and perfect your pitch with colleagues and get comfortable, and confident, selling yourself to others.

EACH STEP OR ACTION YOU TAKE BUILDS EXPERIENCE, CONFIDENCE, AND COMPETENCE. Know your value. Your value is not based just on the class/ session time, but also the prep involved, technology investment, and your expertise. Try recording your session/workout and experience it as a participant. Then, ask yourself, “What would I personally pay for that experience?” This is a great exercise to ensure you are always providing your maximum energy and best product to your clients. Know your worth and don’t be afraid to ask for it. If you undercharge for your services, you may find yourself burned out trying to keep up or feeling resentful and taken for granted. Build community. Many people participate in group fitness for a sense of community. Creating a virtual community like a private Facebook group, virtual cocktail hours, etc., can create unity with your clients and increase retention in your business. There are countless ways to exercise online; however, facilitating a place people can feel safe, supported, celebrated, and seen is a priceless component that a single workout can’t compete with.

Invest in technology and online education. There are many professionals who have shared their best practices, tools, and experience to help you fast track your progress. Ask questions and reach out to those you see succeeding. Learn from their mistakes. Programs like canfitpro’s Online Fitness Professional can help you keep up with the fast-changing landscape and fast track your business by giving you tools, tips, strategies, and direction on where and how to get started. Especially with logistics like paperwork, systems, technology, apps, etc. Invest the time and money to learn how to get started, or pivot your business now and fast track your progress while minimizing setbacks. As Les Brown said: “You don’t have to be great to get started, but you have to get started to be great.” Your time to start your online business is here. Set a plan in motion and begin taking action now.

Tony Felgueiras is known for his high energy connectionbased fitness classes. As a fitness instructor and personal trainer based out of Hamilton, Tony’s impact extends beyond the studio through virtual coaching, while influencing the fitness industry as a member of the canfitpro Advisory Panel and winner of canfitpro Fitness Instructor Specialist of the Year 2020. Connect with Tony on Instagram @tonyf_fitness

canfitpro May/June 2021



TAKE IT OUTDOORS CARDIO ZEN BRINGS THE BEST OF HIIT AND YOGA TOGETHER FOR A WELLROUNDED OUTDOOR EXPERIENCE By Skip Jennings According to The Personal Trainer Development Center, COVID-19 had a tremendous effect on the fitness industry. Before the pandemic, 60 per cent of trainers worked with their clients in person, seven per cent coached online, and 32 per cent combined in-person and online training. Post-pandemic, just 14 per cent plan to coach primarily in person (76 per cent decline), 21 per cent plan to work mainly online (a 300 per cent increase), while 62 per cent will combine in-person and online training. But there is a third option. Welcome to the new, yet not so new fitness arena, Mother Nature. Leading fitness chains have taken their fitness to the outdoors. From strength and cardio machines to group fitness and cycling, outdoor fitness is the new normal. 36 canfitpro May/June 2021

A great way to use our wide-open spaces is with crowd-pleasing Bootcampstyle classes. High-Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) checks all the boxes for a fast and effective training modality. The primary challenge group fitness instructors have is fitting in the wellneeded stretch and recovery. Cardio Zen combines HIIT exercises with yoga so students have a well-rounded group fitness experience. Cardio Zen and the outdoors are the perfect match to keep each student safe and offer a fun and exciting experience. Cardio Zen alternates between a HIIT exercise and a yoga pose/s. With a 1:1 time ratio and a six-minute block, each HIIT exercise is performed for one minute followed by a yoga pose for one

minute. The pairing of HIIT with yoga is essential. Whatever the primary muscle group focus is, the yoga pose should complement this to complete the pairing. Each pair is performed three times - we learn it, progress it, and master it. How many pairings will be determined by the time allotted for the class. Think of the HIIT exercises as the explosive, unleashed strength and power. The yoga poses are the invitation to slow down, be centered, and mindful – it’s active recovery. Why Intervals? The number one reason students give up on exercise is because of time. Interval Training is one of the most effective ways to meet this challenge. Intervals use a short burst of time and energy with an active recovery

time, creating a safe modality for any fitness level.

If you have access to light resistance equipment, incorporate them.

Why yoga? Beyond the flexibility benefits, yoga is one of the great balancers. Because we are frequently on the go (both physically and mentally), yoga invites us to slow down and be more present – incorporating body, mind, and spirit. Participation in yoga has also been known to reduce stress, improve posture, offer a boost to the immune system, provide a better sleep experience, increase blood flow, improve digestion, restore the body, improve concentration and focus, improve the outlook on life; the benefits are endless.

What does the coach need? A timer of some type to track time and a desire to be an excellent coach. Do you need to be yoga certified? No, but be familiar with stretching techniques. When you coach Cardio Zen, you wear two hats. You are a bootcamp motivator that can quickly shift their voice and energy to one of calm. During HIIT, inspire and motivate participants to work. During yoga, bring the Zen.

What does the student need? The equipment is minimal and straightforward; a mat and a willingness to have fun.

Preparation is Queen! Prepare, prepare, prepare. Plan your pairing of HIIT and yoga by balancing work and stretch. Choose exercises that focus on full-body integration. Work the anterior, posterior, and lateral parts of the body. Incorporate

a push exercise, like a push-up, followed by a pull exercise like a row. Lunges are great but remember to strengthen the hamstrings, which can be achieved with a single leg deadlift. There are no limits; be creative and have fun!

Skip Jennings is a podcaster and the author of The Lotus Kitchen, Spirit Explosion, and The Little Book for Big Transformations. Skip is the owner of Mind, Body, Spirit Solutions LLC. He specializes in coaching clients using his C.A.R.E.S. philosophy which stands for Connection, Action, Remember, Empowerment, Self-Love.

30 Minute Cardio Zen Class: Basic Exercise /Yoga Pose

Progression 1

Progression 2

Progression 3

Lateral Shuffles (Cardio/Strength)

Lateral Shuffles Deep Squats

Lateral Shuffles Deep Squats with a Knee Lift

Lateral Shuffle with Jump

Lateral Side Bend/Stretch (Yoga)

Right and Left / Divide the time allotted

Squats (Cardio/Strength)

Squat Alternating Knee Lift

Squat Jumps

Squat Jump 1800 Turns

Dancer Pose (Yoga) or Quad Stretch

Right and Left / Divide the time allotted

Sprints – Set the Distance (Cardio)

Short Distance: From Point A to Point B Goal: Complete (once) in the time allotted

Medium Distance: From Point A to Point B – Goal: Complete (twice) In the time allotted

Long Distance: From Point A to Point B - Goal: Complete (three times) In the time allotted

Warrior Two (Yoga) or Inner Thigh Stretch

Right and Left / Divide the time allotted

Burpees – Step Back and Forward (Cardio/Strength)

Burpees – Hop Back – Step Forward

Burpees – Hop Back – Hop Forward

Burpees – Hop Back – Push Up – Hop Forward

Alternating Reverse Lunges (Cardo/Strength)

Alternating Reverse Lunges

Increase Speed

Jump Split Lunges

Kneeling Crescent Lunge to Half Splits (Yoga)

Right and Left / Divide the time allotted

Standing Chest Opener (Yoga)

If you have a passion for nutrition, fitness or just helping people, we want to hear from you! Real Nutrition • Real Lifestyle • Real Opportunity.

canfitpro May/June 2021





THREE STEPS TO GETTING STRONG, ONE LEG AT A TIME By Kathleen Trotter, PTS 38 canfitpro May/June 2021

RUNNING IS A SINGLE-LEG ACTIVITY. THUS, TO BE A STRONG, RESILIENT, AND AN INJURY-FREE RUNNER, ONE HAS TO BE ABLE TO CREATE POWER, DISSIPATE GROUND REACTIONARY FORCES, AND MAINTAIN FUNCTIONAL BIOMECHANICS ON ONE LEG. To you, the above may sound obvious, but in my experience too many runners (and their trainers) don’t prioritize singleleg exercises. If you have runners on your roster and you are not already framing single-leg activities as a “non-negotiable”, start! Single-leg exercises train the body to balance, dissipate forces, and provide feedback to the brain about the body’s position in space. It is your job to help your clients understand what proper single-leg alignment is in order to build their awareness and strength in a controlled environment so that they can take that awareness and apply it to their running, not to mention any real-life functional requirements. Three steps to getting strong on one leg: Step 1. Teach your clients how to stand on one leg. If your client can’t stand on one leg with good form (which is harder than most of us anticipate), they absolutely can’t run long distances with good form. I like to tease my clients by saying, “You have to be able to stand properly on one leg before you can run …. you have to earn the right to run.” Teach clients “triangle balance” toe lifts.

Stand on the right leg. Engage the glutes, make sure the hips are level, and keep the kneecap in line with the middle toes and weight evenly distributed between the ball of the big toe, the ball of the little toe, and the heel. Place a pen under the arch to form a “dome arch” (make sure arch is lifted away from the pen without

the foot rolling out). Maintain this position as toes lift and spread. Repeat 15 times. Switch sides. Level one is with left toes lightly touching the floor in a “kickstand.” For level two, lift the left leg/foot off the floor. Step 2. Use the ‘single-leg hinge’ to tweak what needs tweaking. The next step is to teach and master a more dynamic move. Stand on the right leg, chest out. Hinge forward, keeping the back flat. Keep the left hip down as the chest hinges forward. Use the right glute muscles to stand up. Repeat five or more times. Level one is with left toes in “kickstand.” For level two, lift the left leg/foot away from the floor. Use this move as an opportunity to tweak weak links. Point out “give points” (breaks in form) so clients can “put their brain” to the body part that needs attention. If your client’s foot tends to supinate (roll out), try using a band to MAKE the big toe stay down. Place right foot on one end of a long band and hold the other end of the band with the right hand. The band should be placed under the foot so when the client hinges and pulls on the band it will pull their foot slightly into supination if they don’t purposely push down with their big toe. If your client collapses through the arch, do the hinge barefoot with a pen under the arch and “dome” the arch away from the pen throughout entire move. If your client’s knee tends to roll in (knee valgus), hook a band around their thigh just above the knee as well as a stable object at the same height. The band should slightly pull the knee into valgus position. Instruct your client to use their muscles—think glute and core—to resist the pull of the band.

Step 3: Add other single-leg activities. Think step ups, single-leg bridges, and single-leg calf raises. Add a balance element to traditional exercises. Do walking lunges balancing on one leg with the other knee up between each lunge, clock lunges, and/ or squats where you balance on one leg between each rep. Add a single-leg balance element to upper-body exercises. Try bicep curls on one leg, etc. Once clients can maintain proper form standing on the floor, get them standing on one leg on the dome side of a BOSU or on a SITFIT cushion. Final Note I am a huge fan of single-leg exercises, but that doesn’t mean I am suggesting neglecting bilateral multi-joint strength moves. The stronger you can make your clients the better - program both unilateral and bilateral moves! Get your clients squatting, doing deadlifts, planking, etc., and don’t forget the upper body. I love thoracic rotations and bent-over rows. Your clients will thank you when they are able to increase the power in their legs by calling on the power in their upper body. As I always tell my clients, “Don’t run to get in shape …. get in shape to run.”

Kathleen Trotter holds a master’s degree in Exercise Science, is the author of two books including the new book Your Fittest Future Self, and is a Personal Trainer, Nutritionist, Pilates Specialist, and Life Coach. Find out more at

canfitpro May/June 2021



Developing Maximum Aerobic Power for Runners






By James Breese



The first rule is about maximizing your aerobic threshold. The second rule is about maximizing your anaerobic threshold. Both need to be trained very differently, but maximizing both is key to maximizing the cardiovascular system.

It is an important marker of intensity for endurance athletes. It corresponds to the most important training zone to use in developing aerobic capacity. Without first maximizing your aerobic threshold or base levels of strength, you will never truly maximize your anaerobic threshold or VO2 Max, the gold standard indicators in measuring one’s potential cardiovascular performance.

One of the biggest problems we see with everyday athletes is that they don’t spend time developing the aerobic or anaerobic threshold individually. Instead, they spend the vast majority of their time training in the Aerobic Power Zone that uses both glucose and fat for fuel. The ‘middle zone of death’ as we call it.

It’s important to understand the role of lactic acid, which is often seen as the cause of poor cardiovascular capacity. Lactic acid only appears in the body when the body can no longer work aerobically, and anaerobic glycolysis occurs. The two golden rules of developing the cardiovascular system are: 1. Reduce the production of lactate by having a higher aerobic threshold. 2. Increase the rate of lactate removal from the working muscles by having a functioning anaerobic system.

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The secret of the world’s elite endurance athletes is that they have shrunk their Aerobic Power Zone and closed the gap between the aerobic threshold and the anaerobic threshold. Most elite endurance athletes have less than a 10 per cent difference between the two thresholds. This means they can perform faster, for longer, and more frequently working below their aerobic threshold, using fat stores as their primary fuel source. I would argue that the vast majority of the world’s population suffers from Aerobic Deficiency Syndrome (ADS). They have a very poor aerobic threshold, and their Aerobic Power Zone is considerably larger. This means they will tire much faster than the advanced athlete. DANS VOTRE PROFIL

We are so wired to believe that we DE MEMBRE. should work intensely and harder, just like the sizzle reels of elite athlete training videos, that we often miss the hard work, dedication, and patience it requires to maximize true athletic potential, which lies in developing your aerobic threshold. Essentially, ADS means that the body is not as efficient as it should be. Typically, heart rates are elevated, resulting in higher levels of stress. This not only affects athletes but everyday people too. Just think about it: the lower your aerobic threshold, the less energy you have throughout the day to complete routine tasks and the more time it takes you to recover from completing these tasks. Having a high aerobic threshold allows you to perform more tasks, better and faster, and allows you to recover faster. As people move less and less, the harder these routine tasks become. Humans are becoming severely undertrained and are predominantly relying on their glucose levels to support them through the day. Can you see now why so many people reach for those sugary energy drinks daily? How to Test Your Aerobic Threshold Determining your aerobic threshold is THE MOST IMPORTANT FACTOR in developing your cardiovascular training and the base from which all other training plans and

programs are written. So how do we test for your aerobic threshold? Remember, this is very different from testing your anaerobic threshold, so please don’t get confused here. The only true method of testing your aerobic threshold is performing a gas exchange test in a lab. There are very few labs around the world that can do this, and it is expensive to administer. I would say this test is for elite athletes only because, at the elite levels, the one per cent differences count. But for us mere mortals over 30, we can use three simple methods: 1. The Talk Test - can you talk comfortably while performing aerobic exercise? 2. The Breath Test - can you nasal breathe the entire time during aerobic exercise? 3. Maximum Aerobic Function (MAF) - using a heart rate monitor, use the formula 180 – age, and don’t allow your heart rate to go above this number. How to Train to Maximize Your Aerobic Threshold There’s no easy way around this. The key to building your aerobic threshold is volume. Volume, volume, and more volume of subaerobic threshold training that allows us to build up our aerobic speed and make our movement economy more efficient in terms of technique and metabolism. We have to

re-train the body to prioritize using fat as the primary fuel source for endurance-based activities, and that means spending hours and hours working out at below your aerobic threshold.

You might be slightly deterred. I’m sorry to be the bearer of bad news, but this is what it takes to become a serious everyday athlete.

A warm-up for an elite athlete may completely overload a novice trainee, Remember, you will never maximize your and what constitutes enough for one cardiovascular potential without first intermediate athlete may completely maximizing your aerobic threshold. Having a overload another. When you work on robust aerobic system is paramount before building the aerobic threshold, there isn’t a we dive into developing your anaerobic one-size-fits-all approach. It’s unique to each threshold. A certain level of strength is individual. required to allow us to go deep enough into this system to elicit the correct dose Your results will be directly proportional to response. the amount of work you put in and building the cardiovascular engine and developing If you want to build a truly robust aerobic your aerobic threshold takes time, effort, and threshold, you need to look at it from an dedication. But I promise you, it’s worth it in annual training perspective and understand the long run. that volume and consistency is key to development. As a novice, you want to build to a minimum of 400 hours of training time each year working on the cardiovascular system, not including strength or movementBesides chief dream based workouts. That’s roughly seven maker at Strength to eight hours a week dedicated to Matters, James Breese cardiovascular work. At the top end, you’re looking to build to 800 plus hours of cardiovascular work each year. This is what the elite level men and women do, and it gives you an idea of what it takes to get to that level. You may be reading this and thinking, “I have no chance of hitting 400 plus hours of training, let alone 800.”

is an author, speaker, podcaster, and vlogger. You’ll mostly find James in the mountains of Wales or Austria as well as drinking coffee, going to the cinema, listening to live music, playing cricket, and watching his beloved Wales rugby and Manchester United soccer teams.

canfitpro May/June 2021



Développer une puissance aérobie maximale pour les coureurs







LE VOLUME ET LA CONSTANCE SONT LES DEUX COMPOSANTES CLÉS DU POTENTIEL CARDIOVASCULAIRE Par James Breese LE SEUIL AÉROBIE EST LA LIMITE LA PLUS ÉLEVÉE DE L’EXERCICE, C’EST LORSQUE LA PRODUCTION D’ÉNERGIE EST PRÉDOMINÉE PAR LA GLYCOLYSE ANAÉROBIE (SUCRES) PLUTÔT QUE PAR L’OXYDATION DES GRAISSES (DE NATURE AÉROBIE). C’est un important indicateur d’intensité pour les athlètes d’endurance. Cela correspond à la plus importante zone d’entrainement à utiliser dans le développement de la capacité aérobie. Sans d’abord maximiser votre seuil aérobie ou niveaux de base de force, vous ne pourrez jamais vraiment maximiser votre seuil anaérobie ou VO2Max, références absolues dans la mesure de performance cardiovasculaire potentielle d’un individu. Il est important de comprendre le rôle de l’acide lactique, souvent perçu comme étant la cause d’une pauvre capacité cardiovasculaire. L’acide lactique n’apparait dans le corps que lorsque ce dernier ne peut plus travailler en mode aérobie, lorsque la glycolyse anaérobie se produit. Les deux règles d’or pour le développement du système cardiovasculaire sont :

différentes, mais l’optimisation des deux est la clé de l’optimisation du système cardiovasculaire. Un des problèmes les plus courants chez les athlètes de tous les jours, c’est qu’ils ne prennent pas le temps de développer les deux seuils individuellement. Plutôt, ils passent la vaste majorité de leurs entrainements dans la zone de puissance aérobie, qui utilise le glucose et les graisses comme carburant. Ce que nous appelons dans notre jargon « the middle zone of death ». Le secret de l’élite des athlètes d’endurance, c’est qu’ils ont réduit leur zone de puissance aérobie et refermé l’écart entre le seuil aérobie et le seuil anaérobie. L’écart entre les deux seuils de la plupart des athlètes d’endurance d’élite est de moins de dix pour cent. Ce qui signifie que leur performance est plus rapide, plus longue et qu’ils travaillent plus souvent sous leur seuil aérobie, et en utilisant leurs réserves de graisses comme principale source de carburant.

1. Réduire la production du lactate grâce à un seuil aérobie plus élevé ; 2. Augmenter le taux d’élimination du lactate des muscles sollicités grâce à un système anaérobie fonctionnel.

Il faudrait cependant noter que la grande majorité de la population mondiale souffre du syndrome de déficience aérobie (ou ADS). Ils ont un seuil aérobie très bas, et leur zone de puissance aérobie est beaucoup plus grande. Ce qui signifie qu’ils ressentiront de la fatigue beaucoup plus rapidement qu’un athlète de compétition.

La première règle demande de maximiser le seuil aérobie. La deuxième demande de maximiser le seuil anaérobie. Les deux seuils doivent être entrainés de façons très

Nous avons tellement été habitués à croire que nous devions travailler toujours plus fort, comme ce que l’on voit dans les extraits vidéos d’entrainement d’athlètes

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de compétition, que nous passons souvent à côté de ce qui est vraiment essentiel ; c’est-à-dire le travail, la détermination, et la patience nécessaires à l’optimisation de notre véritable potentiel athlétique, et qui réside dans le développement du seuil aérobie. Essentiellement, l’ADS veut dire que le corps n’est pas aussi efficace qu’il devrait l’être. Habituellement, les fréquences cardiaques sont élevées, ce qui entraine de plus hauts niveaux de stress. Et ça n’affecte pas seulement les athlètes, mais aussi les gens en général. Pensez-y : plus votre seuil aérobie est faible, moins vous disposez d’énergie pendant la journée pour effectuer vos tâches habituelles et plus il vous faudra de temps pour récupérer une fois les tâches complétées. Un seuil aérobie élevé vous permet d’effectuer plus de tâches, mieux, et plus rapidement, en plus de faciliter la récupération. Parce que les gens bougent de moins en moins, effectuer leurs tâches quotidiennes devient de plus en plus difficile pour eux. Les gens deviennent sévèrement sous-entrainés et dépendent principalement sur les niveaux de glucose pour les soutenir pendant la journée. Vous comprenez maintenant pourquoi autant de personnes ont recours aux boissons énergisantes sucrées, et ce, quotidiennement? Comment évaluer votre seuil aérobie Déterminer son seuil aérobie est le PLUS IMPORTANT FACTEUR du développement d’un entrainement cardiovasculaire, c’est aussi la base à partir de laquelle tous les autres plans et programmes d’entrainement

sont élaborés. Alors, comment faire pour évaluer le seuil aérobie ? Souvenez vous que c’est très différent que de faire l’évaluation du seuil anaérobie, veillez à ne pas vous méprendre. La seule véritable méthode pour tester le seuil aérobie est en effectuant une analyse des échanges gazeux en laboratoire. Il n’existe que très peu de laboratoires dans le monde qui sont en mesure d’effectuer cette analyse, et c’est sans compter qu’elle est plutôt dispendieuse. Je dirais qu’une telle analyse devrait être réservée pour les athlètes puisqu’à ces niveaux de performance, un pour cent fait une différence. Mais pour nous, humbles mortels de plus de 30 ans, il est possible d’utiliser ces trois méthodes simples :

développer la vitesse aérobie et de rendre l’économie de mouvements plus efficace en termes de technique et de métabolisme. Nous devons réentrainer le corps pour qu’il utilise en priorité les graisses comme principale source de carburant pour les activités d’endurance, ce qui implique de passer des heures et des heures à s’entrainer en dessous du seuil aérobie. N’oubliez pas, vous ne serez jamais en mesure de maximiser votre capacité cardiovasculaire sans d’abord maximiser votre seuil aérobie. Un système aérobie robuste est crucial avant de se plonger dans le développement du seuil anaérobie. Un certain niveau de force est nécessaire pour nous permettre d’aller suffisamment en profondeur dans ce système afin de susciter la réponse appropriée en termes de dose.

1. Le test du dialogue – pouvez-vous parler, sans vous essouffler, tout en faisant un exercice aérobique ? 2. Le test de la respiration – pouvez-vous respirer par le nez tout le long d’un exercice aérobique ? 3. Capacité aérobie maximale (VMA) – en utilisant la formule « 180 - âge », on obtient une cible FC, grâce à un moniteur de fréquences cardiaques, il faut s’assurer que le rythme cardiaque ne dépasse pas le résultat obtenu.

Si vous souhaitez développer un seuil aérobie vraiment robuste, il vous faudra prendre en compte qu’il s’agit d’un long processus, et comprendre que la quantité et la constance sont les clés du développement. À titre de débutant, vous voudrez accumuler un minimum de 400 heures d’entrainement cardiovasculaire par année, et c’est sans inclure les entrainements de musculation et d’exercices fonctionnels. Ce qui représente environ sept à huit heures d’entrainement cardiovasculaire par semaine.

Comment vous entrainer pour optimiser votre seuil aérobie Il n’y a pas de solution facile pour y arriver. La clé pour développer le seuil aérobie est le nombre. Le nombre d’entrainements en dessous du seuil aérobie qui permettent de

Dans l’extrémité supérieure, vous voudrez accumuler 800 heures et plus d’entrainement cardiovasculaire par année. C’est ce que font les athlètes d’élite hommes et femmes ; ça vous donne une idée de ce qu’il faut pour atteindre ce niveau. Vous

êtes probablement entrain de vous dire : « Il n’y a aucune chance que je puisse faire 400 heures et plus d’entrainement, encore moins 800 ! » Il est possible que vous soyez légèrement découragé. Je suis désolé d’être porteur de mauvaises nouvelles, mais c’est ce qu’il faut pour devenir un sportif accompli. Un simple échauffement d’athlète d’élite peut complètement surcharger un athlète débutant et ce qui peut être suffisant pour un athlète intermédiaire peut être trop pour un autre. Lorsque votre objectif consiste à développer votre seuil aérobie, il n’y a aucune approche unique qui convienne à tout le monde. Chaque approche est unique à chaque individu. Vos résultats seront directement proportionnels à la quantité de travail que vous y mettrez ; le développement du moteur cardiovasculaire et du seuil aérobie prend temps, efforts, constance, et dévouement. En revanche, je vous jure que le jeu en vaut la chandelle. En plus d’être « concrétiseur de rêves en chef » pour le compte de Strength Matters, James Breese est auteur, conférencier, baladodiffuseur, et vidéoblogueur. La plupart du temps, vous pourrez trouver James dans les montagnes du Pays de Galles, en Autriche, dans un café, au cinéma, à un spectacle de musique, en train de jouer au cricket, ou d’assister à une partie de l’une de ses équipes sportives favorites : l’équipe du Pays de Galles de rugby à XV ou le Manchester United FC.

canfitpro May/June 2021




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FUNCTIONAL MOVEMENT SYSTEMS (FMS) IS A KEY PART OF THE FITNESS TRAINING AND BUSINESS MODEL AT BASQUE SPORT TRAINERS (BST) IN ELGOIBAR, SPAIN. When clients can actually see the results of their training through favorable changes, not only does it build their selfconfidence, it also creates an invaluable bond in the client-trainer relationship, e.g. fidelity. All clients that want to train at BST go through a battery of measurable, repeatable tests, such as body composition (body mass index, muscle mass, body fat content) and muscle function (strength, girth, endurance). This includes individual clients, small groups, and kids participating in judo or looking to improve general fitness. The Functional Movement Screen has become a key addition to the systems we already had in place. We now take a global look at movement patterns and identify the weak link in these patterns. By differentiating between mobility, motor control, and/or general movement pattern dysfunctions, we have been able to streamline programming and help our clients reach their goals much faster. At BST, all exercises must be effective (performing the right exercise), efficient

(performing the exercise right), and safe (do no harm). We utilize these principles to guide us in controlling training variables such as intensity, velocity, load, etc. This training philosophy coincides perfectly with the three principles of FMS: 1. First move well, then move often; 2. Correct, Protect, and Develop; 3. Create systems to protect the principles.

short distance in my car. Since I started training at BST, I don’t even have pain with driving anymore.”


Client satisfaction is of the utmost importance when it comes to establishing the best client-professional relationship possible. Using metrics as a part of your standard operating procedure will not only help you track client progress, but also contribute to growing your business by building a loyal client base.

“I’m a passionate skier, and I used to only be able to ski in the morning, and then my knees would pay the price for the next week. Now I can ski a full day and not even experience discomfort in my knees.”

The results of incorporating objective metrics into our system speaks for themselves. Here are just a few quotes from our clients: “When I would squat down to the floor to play with my young daughter, my knees hurt after about two minutes. Now I can be comfortable in this position for 30 minutes.” “Since I learned to ‘sit into my hips’ by training the deadlift instead of just the squat, I’ve nearly doubled the amount of weight I can squat in just one month!” “I used to have pain with just driving a

Eric Lazar received his MS degree in physical therapy from the University of California, San Francisco. He practiced nearly 10 years in orthopedic and hospital-based care in the U.S., before moving to Spain where he now teaches and sees patients at a chiropractic school near Madrid, incorporating concepts and practice of FMS.

canfitpro May/June 2021



DRAWING A ROADMAP FOR CLIENT SUCCESS How to use body composition analysis to tackle and track fitness goals By InBodyCanada Photo courtesy of F45 Training Golden Mile

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WHEN CLIENTS BEGIN WORKING WITH A NEW TRAINER, THEY TEND TO HAVE A RANGE OF GOALS IN MIND: FEEL FIT, GET STRONGER. MANY HAVE GOALS THAT SEEM DIFFICULT TO MEASURE, LIKE HIGHER ENERGY LEVELS, IMPROVED SLEEP, OR OVERALL BETTER HEALTH. What all of these goals have in common: they can’t be captured by a number on the bathroom scale. In today’s world, personal trainers are able to take advantage of better body composition tech to help their clients meet those less straightforward and more subjective goals - beyond simply “losing weight.” Body composition analysis (BCA) goes beyond a one-number weight measurement by analyzing an individual’s internal makeup. Instead of focusing on their overall weight, trainers can help their clients achieve more nuanced goals by tracking changes in their muscle mass and body fat. How does it work? Instead of methods like scales and calipers, newer body composition tech uses scanners and other non-invasive tools to track key measurements, such as skeletal muscle mass and body fat percentage.

in differing amounts, it’s possible for the scanner to register highly accurate measurements of an individual’s overall body composition. For trainers, body composition analysis can offer a more detailed portrait of health at the beginning of a client’s journey and further on into a program. It’s also a special “event”: using body composition technology can be more motivating for clients than the more typical act of stepping onto a scale.

… NEWER BODY COMPOSITION TECH USES SCANNERS AND OTHER NON-INVASIVE TOOLS TO TRACK KEY MEASUREMENTS … What does it measure? Vana Amanatidis, who regularly uses body composition technology at her studio in the Toronto area, said that her clients are most often interested in their muscle/fat analysis. “Everyone wants their body fat mass to go down and skeletal muscle mass to go up,” Amanatidis said. These two measurements are key to showing clients and trainers how their efforts in the gym are changing their bodies. Skeletal muscle mass represents the total amount of an individuals’ muscle - the parts of their bodies that can be strengthened and developed through exercise. Body fat mass represents an individual’s total weight of fat - a more specific number than one’s overall weight. Other popular, useful BCA measurements include accurate percentage of body fat measurements and body water analysis. Visceral fat levels inform clients how much visceral fat they carry (fat that is deeper in the body and, when in excess, is linked to adverse health outcomes).

Photo courtesy of F45 Training Golden Mile

Remove the guesswork of determining what your client’s weight fluctuations mean. One of the most common and effective technologies is Bioimpedance Analysis, often known as BIA. Electrodes are placed on an individual’s hands and feet; then a low-level and painless electrical current is transmitted through the body. Because different types of body mass water, blood, fat, muscle - resist electricity

BCA measurements such as segmental analysis allow clients to “see” their bodies in greater detail. Segmental analysis shows the weight of an individual’s lean body mass across different body parts their arms, torso, and legs, for example. BCA and Goal-Setting The highly specific measurements made by BCA can help trainers to track their clients’ progress towards individual goals, such as toned, even development across the body and muscle growth as opposed to simple weight gain.

For Vana Amanatidis, the benefits of BCA are twofold: its measurements help her clients make targeted changes in their behavior to reach their goals, and it also helps them stay motivated and energized throughout their fitness journeys. Detailed BCA measurements help give clients “roadmaps.” If an individual isn’t gaining as much muscle as they’d hoped, for example, they know to eat more protein and lift. They can make sure they’re training both sides of the body evenly, and can learn the exact number of calories their body burns while at rest. “When [clients] have the full picture of what’s going on inside, they can then tweak very specific things in order to obtain the results they’re looking for,” Amanatidis explained. She recalled one client who exercised diligently throughout her training program but was dismayed to see that she only lost two pounds. After her body composition analysis, the client learned that her transformation had actually been much more significant: she had lost 11 pounds of fat and gained nine pounds of muscle. Amanatidis recalled how her client’s face lit up when she saw the real changes she had made - information she couldn’t have learned from her bathroom scale. To take advantage of the motivating aspect of BCA, Amanatidis recommends that trainers incorporate BCA into timeconstrained “challenges.” By using BCA at the outset, middle, and end of her 45day challenge, Amanatidis helps clients stay on track and measure the results of their exercise and effort, helping them to understand their health better in the long term. BCA-based challenges can encourage clients to pursue their goals. They can also drive-up incremental revenue for your facility or personal training studio clients can gain better value when they can more efficiently pursue their specific fitness goals. InBodyCanada is the exclusive distributor of InBody bioelectrical body composition analyzers in Canada, serving practitioners in the medical, fitness, and wellness industries since 2005. Contact InBodyCanada at or visit

canfitpro May/June 2021




A meditative technique to recharge the heart and revitalize your energy system OUR ABILITY TO THRIVE AS HUMAN BEINGS ON THIS PLANET IS DIRECTLY RELATED TO OUR RELATIONSHIP WITH MOTHER EARTH. FROM EATING WHOLE, ORGANIC FOODS TO THE ANCIENT ART OF FOREST BATHING, THE DEEPER OUR CONNECTION TO NATURE, THE GREATER THE EFFECT IT HAS ON OUR ENERGY. Prana, the Sanskrit “word” for life force energy, is present within all living things. It sustains life, governs the natural cycles of everything, and is accessed through breath. When we spend time in a natural environment, whether it’s the woods, mountains, or by the ocean, we absorb prana and it revitalizes our energy system, similar to plugging your phone into an electrical outlet. The organ within our body with the greatest amount of life force is our heart. According to HeartMath Institute, a nonprofit organization dedicated to “awakening the heart of humanity,” the heart’s electrical field is 60 times greater than that of the brain. When we live in alignment with our heart, we truly come alive. No matter what activity you perform outdoors, doing it mindfully and with intention will help you draw in and assimilate prana while recharging our heart’s electrical field and aligning with the natural cycles of life. Next time you take your workout outdoors, try the following meditative techniques and notice the effects it has on your body, mind, and spirit.

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1. Ground. Standing with feet shoulder distance apart, take a deep breath in and move and stretch as you set an intention for this experience. Then, with feet parallel, shift your bodyweight back and forth between the balls of your feet and your heels, keeping your feet connected to the ground as you do so. Next, keep your bodyweight on the balls of your feet with heels grounded and begin to bend and extend your knees, keeping shoulders, hips, and heels stacked. Repeat this six times and then hold the position with knees bent while you breathe naturally and deeply for at least 30 seconds. Feel a downward current of energy flow from the top of your head to your feet and sense it anchoring into the earth. Now that we’re grounded, let’s have some fun! 2. Elevate your heart rate. Whether it’s a brisk walk through the woods or a 20-minute HIIT workout in a park, get your heart pumping. As you do this, breathe deeply and notice how your body responds to the movement. The focus here is to move and have fun! 3. Walk with purpose. As a cool down to your movement, walk at a natural pace and begin to slow your breathing. Regardless of speed, be intentional with each step. Notice how your feet interact with the ground and take in all sensory information: what you see, hear, feel, smell, and (if applicable) taste. Continue breathing deeply, feeling

your lungs expand, softening your abdomen, and allowing your pelvis to move freely. Naturally allow your pace to decrease. Once you find yourself walking with purpose at a rhythmic pace, begin to coordinate your breath with your steps. Count how many steps it takes for you to fully inhale, and then match your steps on the exhale. Again, naturally allow your pace to decrease and continue engaging all your senses here. 4. Let your heart lead the way. Continue as above and move as though your heart is leading the way. Direct your awareness to the centre of your chest where your heart energy resides and let it guide you forward. This may feel awkward or uncomfortable at first, and if that’s the case, allow the feeling to be present as you move and bring your awareness back to your breath and the energy of your heart. Affirm to yourself “I am grounded, I am joyful, I am loved,” or anything that brings a sense of peace to your experience. Paul Galloro has over 15 years’ experience as a wellness professional. His approach goes beyond the physical and embraces Spiritfull philosophies that are grounded in Love. As a member of the 2021 canfitpro Advisory Board, Paul is dedicated to supporting you to live a heart-centered life. Listen to his podcast, Come Alive! The Living Spirit-fully! Guide To Thriving.

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This mineral is a key component of hemoglobin, a protein in our red blood cells that carries oxygen from our lungs

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throughout our bodies, including our muscles. It also plays a part in energy metabolism. A lack of iron can affect our muscle function, reduce our ability to train at full capacity, and leave us feeling mentally and physically exhausted. Iron deficiency is common among runners, especially women. Research

has shown that up to 18 per cent of Canadian women (aged 14–50) don’t get enough iron, and female athletes may need up to 70 per cent more iron than recommended. Signs and symptoms of iron deficiency include fatigue, weakness, pale skin, headaches, dizziness, cold hands and feet, irritability,

an elevated heart rate, shortness of breath, and a muddled state of mind known as “brain fog.” An Olympian’s Story Olympic athlete Sage Watson, who ran for Canada in the 400-metre hurdles and 4x400 relay at the 2016 Rio Olympics, briefly suffered from iron deficiency in her student days. Watson had left her hometown in southern Alberta to attend Florida State University on a track scholarship. The school’s diet included a lot of chicken and fish, but little red meat – a significant change for Watson, who grew up on her family’s cattle ranch. “My first year at school, I started to not feel so well. I had no energy or motivation. I started sleeping all the time, and I felt like I couldn’t run at practice,” says Watson. “I looked pale and exhausted, even after 10 hours of sleep. I thought, ‘I’m a track athlete – why is walking up this hill making me tired?’” The young athlete’s diet was healthy, so what was going on? After a month of unexplained symptoms, Watson got blood tests done and discovered that she was iron-deficient. “It was this a-ha moment,” she says. “I need to get more red meat in my diet.” How much iron do we need? Men aged 19-plus need eight milligrams (mg) of iron per day. Women aged 19 to 50 need 18 mg per day, and women aged 50-plus need eight mg per day. Athletes at greatest risk for low iron should aim for more than these amounts. This includes female athletes, vegetarians and vegans, regular blood donors, and distance runners. (Distance runners may suffer iron loss due to foot-strike hemolysis – the force of foot strikes breaks down red blood cells in the feet.) Additional risk factors include intense training, poor eating habits, energyrestricted diets, heavy menstrual flow, and poor iron absorption. Athletes at risk may need regular screening for low iron. Reversing iron deficiency through diet and supplements can take three to six months, so prevention is key. For individualized nutrition advice, consult a registered dietitian. Aim for optimal iron intake Low iron can affect our physical and mental performance, so it’s important to

optimize iron intake as part of everyday healthy eating. Tests for iron only show when our stores are already low, and there is no good test to warn about a looming deficiency. In addition, reversing low iron can take a few months or longer. It’s best not to let your iron get low in the first place! You can optimize iron intake by eating iron-rich foods daily. The amount of iron in food varies, and the type of iron affects how well we can absorb it. “Heme” iron comes from animal sources, but amounts vary (see chart below). “Non-heme” iron comes from plant sources, such as lentils, kidney beans, firm tofu, and edamame. We absorb heme iron 10 to 15 times more easily than non-heme iron. For overall health, a mix of animal and plant foods is best. Both plant-sourced and animalsourced foods offer a unique combination of nutrients – for example, beef is one of nature’s best sources of vitamin B12 and heme iron, while lentils and other plantsourced foods provide fibre and folate. For optimal health, eat them both, not one or the other. Food first I always recommend taking a “food first” approach to iron. Iron supplements can be costly and they can cause

If supplements are needed, a health care provider can recommend the type, dose, and timing to meet needs while easing any discomfort. Back on track After learning of her low iron level, Watson added red meat and other iron-rich foods to her diet. She also started iron supplements, which gave her nausea until she found a supplement regime that worked for her. She soon felt more energetic and her appearance improved. “Everyone was like, ‘Wow, you really bounced back!’” she says. Since then, she has continued to eat iron-rich foods – including red meat four or five times a week – take supplements and check her iron levels annually. “I had this huge wake-up call when I realized I need red meat,” says Watson, who is now 26 and training full-time in Tucson, Arizona for the Tokyo Olympics. “I have energy and feel best when I eat this way. It’s been eight years of learning what works best for me and my body. I crave a steak – it’s how I grew up. I will finish a training session and I crave a steak!”

Food Sources of Iron: % Daily Value (DV) Per Serving Beef, liver, pan-fried Beef, composite cuts Spinach, raw Cereal, hot, cream of wheat, regular, prepared Black beans Nuts, almonds, dried, unblanched, unroasted Eggs, chicken, whole, hard-cooked, boiled in shell Tofu, regular, rm or extra rm, raw Chicken, broiler, dark meat, roasted Pork, loin, tenderloin, lean, roasted Turkey, all classes, dark meat only, roasted Hummus Fish, salmon, sockeye (red), baked or broiled Peanut butter Yogurt, plain (2% to 3.9% M.F.) • Animal meat is a combination of heme and non-heme iron. • Dairy and eggs are non-heme. • Plant foods are non-heme only.*









Nutrient values obtained from Health Canada, Canadian Nutrient File, 2015 version. Portion sizes determined from Health Canada’s 2016 Table of Reference Amounts for Food. Based on Iron Daily Value – 18mg. *, Prenatal Nutrition Guidelines for Health Professionals, Iron. 2009, Health Canada.

nausea, vomiting, constipation, and diarrhea. Routine, unmonitored iron supplementation is not recommended. Be wary of supplement marketers who claim that their product is an “excellent source of plant-based iron.” While this may be true, the amount of iron absorbed by the body may not be adequate to meet needs.

Carol Harrison is a registered dietician who loves her daily workouts! She has a food nutrition communications company in Toronto. Follow Carol on Twitter and IG: @greatmealideas

canfitpro May/June 2021



CHANGE FOR THE GOOD A family’s journey of adaptation and adjustment during the pandemic and how they became stronger and more resilient By Sharon-Ann Paleczny

I WAS SO EXCITED FOR MY TRIP TO BRITISH COLUMBIA – A FRIEND AND I PLANNED TO BIKE FOR THREE DAYS NEAR KELOWNA. It was cancelled due to the pandemic. So, I biked 100 kilometres one day in my home province of Ontario instead. It wasn’t the same, but it was good. I was so excited for my trip to California – another friend and I were to run a half marathon in Malibu. It too was cancelled due to the pandemic. So, I ran a 100 MILE Challenge in 10 weeks instead. It wasn’t the same, but it was good. We’ve all had many of our plans cancelled. Some big ones, some small, and all the get-togethers in between. What I have become acutely aware of during this pandemic is my reaction. Initially, working through the day-to-day was mainstream, but handling disappointments, adversity and especially the length of the pandemic, required a change in mindset. When our world was turned upside down, my family of five chose to make the best of it. Sure, there were grumblings about what we were missing, but we always 52 canfitpro May/June 2021

came back to the fact that we were healthy and together. In consideration of all the sadness, all the lives lost, all the unrelenting hard work of frontline workers, there is no question we are extremely fortunate and have much to be grateful for. So, how to remain healthy, both mentally and physically, became the question. It was important to us to maintain our training. It took conscious efforts on our parts to choose how we were going to get through this. Would not being able to get to the gym derail all the hard work each of us had dedicated to our quest to staying healthy? We started with the obvious; get outdoors and walk. We walked A LOT… no matter the weather. We walked in our usual areas and we also discovered some great new areas! Watching spring blossom and goslings and ducklings wandering about, kept our hearts light and hopeful. The next new idea came in the form of a virtual run. My youngest son and I were signed up for a local 10 kilometer run in the spring of 2020 - I do it every year

with at least one of my kids. Initially we thought, “what on earth is a virtual run?” We ran the distance on the day of our choice, in the location of our choice. We put on our medals and took pictures. It wasn’t the same, but it was good! It wasn’t long before we decided to build a home gym. With everything sold out online, my middle son and husband managed to ‘MacGyver’ gym equipment in our garage, driveway, hanging from trees – and before we knew it, we had a rather good outdoor training area. The neighbours got used to seeing us out there, morning, noon, and night; passersby asked, “how much to join your gym?” Nothing better than the great outdoors to help combat all the uncertainty, worry, and stress we were feeling. It wasn’t the same as our usual gym, but it was good. I got back into biking again. I usually bike on the paths throughout our great city; so many routes and you can go for miles! But the paths were remarkably busy with many people not working. A friend re-introduced me to the country roads...I hadn’t biked out there in years.

... WE CAN’T CHANGE THE WIND, BUT WE CAN ALWAYS ADJUST OUR SAILS. I loved it and took each of my kids with me on lengthy rides. I wanted them to experience the peace of getting away from the same scenery for a few hours and what the outdoors can do to help manage anxiety stemming from the times we were living in. Soon it got colder, and the pandemic continued. We moved what we could from our outdoor gym and converted our sunroom – as we were now able to order a few key pieces of equipment. Again, we had to modify our frame of mind and embrace a new way of doing things. Recently my daughter said, “our gym is missing some of my favourite pieces, but I’m good with it.” When the really cold months were upon us, I had to do something to keep up the motivation to exercise outdoors. Enter “virtual running” once again. I never would have thought achieving a little electronic icon for every 10 miles of running could be motivating, but it was! So, this time around I joined a 300 MILE Challenge to keep me motivated. It’s different from training for a real race, but it’s doing the trick; I get outside - no matter the temperature.

My daughter, seeing this “challenge” thing working, challenged me to walk every night in January and February to help us get through another lock down. We only missed two nights; having that commitment to each other helped get us outside and stay active, even on the coldest of nights. Although we couldn’t hit the ski hills, we found opportunities to enjoy the snow; tobogganing, snowshoeing, and snowboarding on the golf course would suffice. Snow shoveling was no longer my son’s neighbourhood job – it became a family affair. By looking after ourselves, we can come to a better understanding and willingness to accept change and the challenges that arise (whatever they may be). In turn, we are better equipped to manage our well-being and support others in our community. As we come upon another spring, we have learned first-hand that we can’t change the wind, but we can always adjust our sails. This pandemic and social unrest have made for tough times, but also presented

some opportunities that otherwise may not have shown themselves. The world has changed – but change drives innovation in all aspects of life. My family and I had to figure out ways to get through these times. We have learned to be more patient, more flexible, more resilient, more grateful, more hopeful. We chose a path to adapt and adjust and it helped us stay motivated, healthy, and positive. We are not the same, we are stronger– and it’s good.

Sharon-Ann Paleczny is the Creative Lead in Canada, Marketing & Communications at Gallagher, and Mom to three healthy kids.

Contact her at or visit

canfitpro May/June 2021



The Secret to Aging Gracefully

Science is proving that mindfulness can help you to live longer and age with joy

By Christina Raskin

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AGING GRACEFULLY ISN’T ABOUT TRYING TO LOOK LIKE A 20-SOMETHING. It’s really about being physically and mentally healthy so you can enjoy your amazing life with all of the wisdom and self-knowledge that you have gained through the years. Science is proving that a mindfulness practice can delay aging at a cellular level while increasing our joy. Scientists agree about 25 per cent of your risk of death is due to genetics. Of the other 75 per cent, the largest factor is diet. A healthy, well-balanced diet of mostly fruits and vegetables is best and, as I’m sure most of us know by now, there is much research that attests to a Mediterranean diet being one of the best. However, you may not know that there is growing research to prove that mindfulness and mind-set helps us stay youthful in body and mind. What the Science Says About Mindfulness and Aging We have long known that mindfulness and meditation, the ability to be present in the moment without interpretation or judgment, improves our quality of life and reduces stress. One study proved that reducing stress can reduce the cellular damage caused by free radicals. Another proved that just one day of mindfulness meditation can down-regulate a gene that codes for inflammation, and inflammation is one of the greatest causes of aging.

Perhaps one of the most impressive studies done in 2014 by Dr. Elissa Epel, a Professor in the Department of Psychiatry at the University of California, San Francisco, showed that the length of a human’s telomeres responds to daily lifestyle changes, including stress. By studying a group of women under stress they were able to prove this. As we age, telomeres burn down, like a candle wick, which leaves the chromosomes vulnerable to damage and starts the aging process.

lasting friendships and ability to laugh. But how can we find contentment when everything is changing? We control what we can and release the things we have no control over.

The Power of Optimism Hilary Tindle, a physician and clinical investigator at Vanderbilt University, has shown through many studies that there is a strong connection between optimism and health. In 2012, she compared more than 430 people and showed that depressed pessimists that had undergone coronary-bypass surgery had more than twice the complications and rehospitalization rate of optimistic patients.

Obviously, we don’t have control over ageing. With the things we can’t control we surrender. This is how we come to acceptance and contentment, through surrendering control and letting go.

Mindfulness Encourages Joyful Aging Aging gracefully is a practice of mindfulness in and of itself and many mindfulness principles can help us to accept aging as part of our natural journey - even learn to embrace it with joy. Contentment is an active practice rather then something that relies on changing external situations. Things will change; however, we are responsible for how we respond. As we age, we can focus on what we are grateful for like our long-

Luckily, through the years, as we have the privilege of getting to know ourselves and the world, we gain wisdom. Use that wisdom to realize what you can control. We can control what we eat, how much we move, and how active we are mentally.

So, aging well isn’t just about genetics. How we live and how we think allow us to fully embrace and enjoy this incredible journey of life. Christina Raskin is the National Training Director of Oxygen Yoga & Fitness and the head of the O2 200hr. Yoga Teacher Training program. She owns two Oxygen studios and has taught yoga and fitness for over 18 years. She is a 500hr E-RYT who absolutely loves yoga, learning, and swimming in the ocean.

canfitpro May/June 2021





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Could you simply bypass the writing of a business plan? Why should you bother putting in the time and effort if you’ll probably have to change it anyway? Here are two big reasons:

As you learn about the world of business, you may come across varied opinions about how to write a business plan or even whether it’s worth it. For instance, you may hear skeptics say that it’s just a guess - an educated guess if you’ve done your homework, but still a guess - so how accurate and useful can it be? What’s more, we can’t know anything with certainty. The zombie apocalypse could start tomorrow, and wouldn’t that throw a monkey wrench into your business plan?

1. A business plan enables you to start the business with a good sense of your strengths and weaknesses, the challenges that may arise due to competition or economic factors, and your chances of succeeding. If you can’t make it work on paper - that is, in a business plan - then it’s not going to make it in real life.

On the other hand, all of science starts with an educated guess in the form of a hypothesis: “I think ______ will take place when I do __________.” You then test the hypothesis, and if it pans out - great! If it doesn’t, you develop a new hypothesis and try again. And that’s what must be done with a business plan. Once you get up and running, you refer back to it, and if things are not going as planned, then you change your plan to reflect your updated best (educated) guess. Some discussions of how to write a business plan advise you to project your business as far as 10 years into the future. However, the further out you project, the more likely you are to be off the mark. For that reason, I favor extending your business plan only to the point where you can get started, get established, and set a direction for growth, which means about three years for most of the business options we’ve discussed.

2. If you need to acquire additional financing, a business plan will show potential investors that you’ve done your research and are willing to put in the work to make your business succeed. No savvy businessperson will invest in a casual idea that doesn’t consider all the details - good, bad, and ugly. One final question before getting started: How long should a business plan be? Answers vary widely. Some sources say that a typical plan runs 15 to 20 pages, whereas others say it should be at least 50 pages long. My own belief is that the page count is secondary to the content. Your business plan needs to include sufficient detail in each section for you to know - and show - that you have thought through all relevant variables that can be known at this time. The number of pages then depends on what you need to say in each section. For example, if there is literally no other fitness facility within an 8to 12-minute radius of your proposed site, then your competitive analysis section will be very short.

You can find a business plan template in appendix A and in the web resource ( TheBusinessOfPersonalTraining); you can use it to develop your own business plan. In addition, each section of this chapter fleshes out part of the template. If you are thinking about starting your own personal training business, consider taking notes as you read this chapter and jotting down brainstorm ideas for your own business plan. As mentioned in chapter 4, my wife, Heather, and I are (as I write this) in the process of opening a boutique fitness studio. Thus, I use a business model very similar to ours in the following discussion of the details of writing a business plan. COMPONENTS OF A BUSINESS PLAN A business plan consists of nine key components: 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9.

Cover letter (optional) Executive summary Business or company description Market analysis and demographics Competitive analysis Management plan Financial plan Capital required Marketing plan

Copyright © 2021 by Human Kinetics Publishers, Inc. Excerpted by permission of Human Kinetics, Champaign, IL. Available to order from Human Kinetics Canada at or by calling 1-800-465-7301.


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