Friday, November 30, 2012

I Challenge You...

DECEMBER CHALLENGE TIME!If this sounds like deja vu that is because it is!  Once again I am challenging YOU this December!
Things are starting to feel festive and you can tell the holiday season is upon us. There seem to be plenty of things that pull us in a million different directions during December and it is oh-so-easy to lose your fitness focus...don't let it happen to you this year!

Sticking with your fitness program is even more important during this month filled with parties, goodies, late nights and travelling. As you know, stress- be it good or bad- can wreak havoc on your health in the short and long term. Regular physical activity is one of your best tools to handle it! So, rather than waiting until January 1st to start your fitness resolution I CHALLENGE YOU to begin today!

Here is my challenge to you::
Pick your own December Challenge with the goal of increasing your fitness by January 1st rather than starting on January 1st.  Your mission is to be MORE FIT ON JANUARY 1ST THAN YOU ARE ON DECEMBER 1ST.  Choose at least one aspect of your fitness that you want to focus on and go for it! Strength, endurance, flexibility, body composition, power, balance, agility- you name it then do it!  Every day or every other day, but put your focus on your challenge so that you come out ahead at the end of the year. 
WHY join the ELM December Challenge? Not only will you put your goals at the top of your personal priority list but you will also find MOTIVATION through accountability to others. Say your goal OUT LOUD and you are more likely to reach it.

Here is how it works:
1. Go to the ELM Facebook page and RSVP to the event: ELM December Challenge
2. Decide on your challenge
3. Post your challenge on the event WALL
4. Check in to let us know how you are doing!  Post photo's, share stories, and ask for support if you need it!

There are no fancy prizes or awards for reaching your goal (but you can set your own reward up:)just the satisfaction of putting your health first!

So...what's YOUR challenge?
Need some ideas? Check out my 12 days of Fitness for a list of ideas to get you thinking about your own December Challenge. Then geterdone!

1. Hamstring Flexibility- legs on the wall for 3 minutes every night!
2. Balance Challenge- single leg, eyes close every morning, work up to 1 minute!
3. Core Challenge- Front Plank during the commercial break of your nightly tv show
4. Hill Challenge- Run hill repeats once per week and attack hills whenever you come to them the rest of the week (on foot, bike or ski -not in your car please).
5. Agility Challenge- Incorporate lateral movement & agility drills (grapevine, fast footwork) into every workout during the week.
6. Cardio Challenge- accumulate a minimum of 250-350 minutes of cardio per week.
7. Strength Challenge- 50:50 complete 50 push ups and 50 sit ups every day.
8. Yoga Challenge- calm your mind by spending at least 20 minutes every day on your yoga practice.
9. Weak Link Challenge- Complete 1 strength exercise for your weakest muscle/ movement and 1 stretch for your tightest muscle/movement every day.
10. Speed Challenge- Complete 5 minutes of speedwork into every workout this month! Can range from 10 seconds to 5 minutes.
11. Power Challenge- Add in power by including an upper body (plyo push ups), lower body(jump squats) and core (med ball sit ups) alternating between the 3 every day this month.
12. Endurance Challenge- add 5 minutes to the end of all your workouts this week- add up to 5 more minutes each week:)
13.  Best shape of my life Challenge- know what to do;)

I would love to hear your ideas! Now...what will my challenge be?? 

Thursday, November 29, 2012

12 Days of Christmas Workout

Sounds innocent enough, right?  HA!  Try this holiday inspired workout next time you need some motivation to put away a good hard effort.   

This morning we wrapped up the fall session of Sunrise Bootcamp with this 12 Days of Christmas Workout.  We used all body weight exercises but you could swap in exercises with free weights, bars, balls bands etc.  The sky is the limit, really.  Just be sure to include a few of your least favorite exercises to get your moneys worth, of course;)

Congrats to my ELM Sunrise Bootcamp recruits for finishing the fall session with a bang!  I hope our post workout celebration was worth every moment of pain:)

We have added 13 new classes to the ELM December Calendar- so be sure to join us for some fun and challenging fitness leading up to Christmas break!

12 Days of Christmas Workout
Complete each exercise acumulatively...just like the song!  On the first day of la la...adding onto the previous exercises each and every time... until you reach the 12th day and do them all one final  time:).

1 Run 200 metres
2 Burpee Push Ups
3 Plank Ups - go from low plank to high plank 3 times
4 In Out Abs (upper and lower lift together)
5 50 Jump Ropes
6 Forward Frog Squat Jumps
7 Power Dips- explode up!
8 See Saw Planks- move body forward and back to start
9 Split Squat Jumps (lunge, jump and switch legs...9 each side)
10 Sky Reaches (on back feet in the air reach to opposite foot...10 each side)
11 Side Plank Lifts (on side on hand or forearm and feet, drop hips down and up 11 each side)
12 Knee Tuck Jumps (jump both legs together, bringing knees as close to chest as possible)

Happy Holidays from ELM!

Friday, November 23, 2012

December Holiday Classes!

We are just a couple of weeks away from the end of our fall session and we just aren't ready to call it we are adding some December Holiday Classes to the ELM Calendar next month! You can look forward to a few bonus weeks of Sunrise Bootcamp, Baby Bootcamp, Fresh Air Fitness and a special Christmas Light Run on Monday December 10th! Continue to improve your fitness right up until the week before Christmas- when we all need it most;)

Bring a Friend! Do you have a friend that might like to try one of ELM's classes? They can join you during your December Holiday Classes by simply bringing a donation for our Christmas Family Hamper!  Suggested donation of $10 or non-perishables are welcome;)

Get ready to get into the spirit...December is right around the corner!

Happy Holidays from ELM!



Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Pacific Crest Trail Magical Journey

Happy Wednesday:)

Here is some powerful inspiration to push you 'over the hump' of the week...Sit back, turn up the volume and enjoy this visual journey along the Pacific Crest Trail.

Thanks to the 'Adventure Blog' for sharing another awesome video of supernatural mother nature;)

One day I will travel along this trail too...

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Your worst nightmare

I spent the weekend in Vancouver at the CanFit Pro Fitness Conference. Thousands of Personal Trainers and Group Fitness Instructors sweating, fist pumping and trying to 'one up' each other with brutal exercises, intervals and the latest fitness equipment.  Working out from 8am until 6pm with rooms full of fit, hyper, cheer leading over-achievers.

It was awesome. Your worst nightmare is our dream weekend;)

I imagine some careers might get a little boring after 16 years. Not so for mine. The fitness industry is dynamic, in constant evolution and full of surprises. I love what I do and I am as inspired today as I was when I began my Kinesiology journey back in...well...the day.
Stoked to find out what the next 16 years will bring...

Happy Trails,


Sunday, November 11, 2012

Happy Birthday ELM!

Happy Birthday ELM!

We are celebrating 11 super fun, super rad, super awesome years of fitness adventures this month...thanks to YOU!  And we are doing it by giving YOU some presents! We have some awesome draw prizes to give away including:

Wooohoooo look at all that loot! All you have to do to enter is complete ELM's 11 Year Birthday Give Away online survey. This quick survey will help us help you reach your fitness goals in 2013! Thanks for participating...and GOOD LUCK!

Follow this link to enter:

Limit one entry per person. Contest closes November 30th. Winners will be announced shortly after that. ELM Members will be given 2 entries over non-Members. Membership pays baby!

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Tight Hamstrings?

(note: i do NOT recommend that you google funny flexibility photos...oh lord)

Tight hamstrings?  Calves?  Hips?  Shoulders?  Chest?  Back?  Neck? 

Not YOU, of course.  But perhaps you know someone who does?  If so, please feel free to share this post with them;)

Flexibility isn't just for side shows and show offs.  Why do most of us need to include it in our daily and weekly fitness regimes?  I am sure you have an answer to that- stretch out tight muscles! 

But ... why?

Correct muscular imbalances...over tight/short muscles pull on joints creating a tug of war, potentially pulling the body out of optimal alignment.  'So what?  Who cares about that?'

Your body does!  This sets you up for injury as your body struggles to do what you ask of it while in a compromised're putting it in 'an awkward situation' so to speak;)  Want to lay down the hammer during the homestretch of that 8k?  Go for it!  Then listen as your short hamstring rips before your very ears...

Ask not what your body can do for you, I say...but what you can do for your body!

'So what?  I don't care if I get injured.'  - said, no one, ever...but let's just play along.

OK- but do you want to run faster?  jump higher?  throw further?  Yeah, I'll bet you do.

Well forget about it man!  Short tight muscles limit the range of motion you can create about a joint.  And that = a decrease in your performance.  Greater range of motion means greater speed, power and force potential.  If you don't do anything else to your training except lengthen tight muscles- you WILL see an improvement in your performance.

Want to run faster?  Well, sorry, your short little hamstrings will only let you cover so much ground with each step.  So, instead you better do more interval workouts and add more mileage to your training plan...what, too busy?  hate speed work?  Well, then...I suggest you STRETCH! 

OK all jokes aside....I'm serious!

What are you doing on Thursday nights from 7-8pm?  If it isn't stretching or yoga then saddle on up and join us for Yoga for Athletes starting this week, November 8th!


Running & Yoga...the perfect combination.

Complement your fall & winter training runs with a relaxing yoga session designed specifically for athletes with tight muscles! Lengthen and tone muscles, improve core and postural strength, focus on deep breathing techniques, and enjoy a serene moment in your busy life. This class is the perfect compliment to any fitness enthusiasts training program. Runners, bikers, hikers and other adventurers will not want to miss this rejuvenating weekly yoga practice.
*Option to come for Need for Speed Running Clinic as well.

Part 1:: November 8-December 13th
Part 2:: January 3 - February 7th
Time 7:05-8:00pm
Prerequisite: None!
Instructor: Bryan Hill