Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Fitness Resolutions 2013

As 2012 comes to a close, I think back to what an amazing year it has been. I reflect back on all the profound changes in my personal life, and the huge changes that happened to the awesome people who have employed my services for strength training, core conditioning, athletic testing, assisted stretch, cardio and program design. Big high fives! I feel very lucky that so many unique and interesting people hire me to help lead them towards a life of fitness. But actually… they are the ones who have done all the hard work…  I’m just merely count the reps.

I get a real sense of accomplishment when I look through my 2012 calendar and see how far they all have come. I’m proud to say that every single one of my clients have moved forward in their fitness, and none of them injured: either in the gym, or out playing and doing what they love best. This to me is a great success and a winning combination of training, goal setting, consistency, balance and execution. Go TEAM!

You may be reading here for some words of wisdom for your fitness program in 2013. Perhaps looking for something interesting to add into your New Year’s Resolutions? Well, here it is: …. “Forget About Making Fitness Resolutions!!!”  Don’t put unrealistic pressure on yourself to achieve whimsical goals on December 31st. Enjoy your seasonal holiday. Spend time with your loved ones. Enjoy yourself whether it be eating a few taboo foods, getting out for a walk, skiing the slopes, sleeping in late, riding your bike, doing some weights, swimming at the pool, booking a massage, or curling up next to the fire with a good book or a movie. My point:  Enjoy Yourself.

I say this because every effective wellness/fitness/athletic regime requires taking time off for you recharge and to come back stronger, faster, better. This in the athletic world this is called periodization. Many think that when you train there should always be a linear line of progress heading steadily up. But actually this isn’t the case. The best way I can describe a good health regime is more like the tide in the ocean. It has a rhythm; a flow up, and a flow down. Ideally, the progress should be overall in a positive direction, but for many now might be the time to allow the water to rush back into the ocean. And instead of fighting against the current, you should allow yourself to rest, and use the momentum of the next tide coming in to push you forward. Almost every time I've seen people come back with increased energy… and most importantly consistency and longevity.

Last, goal setting is a really important part of any fitness or athletic program. However, it just doesn’t have to be done right now while you are soaking up the seasonal festivities. If you’d like a tip on how to be most effective with goal setting, here’s a guide that will help you get the most of your planning. Be “SMART”. Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, and Timely. Try to address each aspect of this acronym and apply it to your goals/program. And remember…  A goal without a timeline …. is just a wish.

Happy Holidays and here’s to your health in 2013.


Thursday, December 13, 2012

Sea to Sky Wellness

Have you ever traveled the 99 North from Vancouver to Squamish, Whistler and Pemberton?

Well, if you haven't already - then chances are you should consider the trip. Not only is it one of the most scenic highway drives I've ever encountered, but it's also the gateway to some of the richest outdoor recreation experiences Canada has to offer.

... And when you come to visit such thriving communities it can be hard to find out what's happening, or narrow down the services to find the right people to help improve your wellness. Visit our friends at the Squamish Wellness Directory to find practitioners, blog posts, and up-to-date information about some of the best health experts out there. http://www.squamishwellness.ca/

From Kinesiology to Naturopathy and Massage to Yoga. It's all there.

What exactly do we mean by Outdoor Recreation.... 

... to name a few

Hiking, Cycling, Skiing, Snowboarding, Cross Country Skiing, Climbing / Bouldering, Camping, Horse Back Riding, Golf, Sledding (Gas or Dog powered), Motor Biking, White Water Paddling, Mountaineering / Back-country Travel , Kite Surfing / Wind Surfing, Sailing, Fishing / Hunting, Logger Sports, Lacrosse, Swimming / Lake Jumping, Conventional Sports ( Soccer/ BaseBall/ Hockey/Football)

For more info about Squamish Wellness Directory visit: http://www.facebook.com/SquamishWellness

Or email: squamishwellness@mail.com

To Your Good Health!


Thursday, November 29, 2012

Bentall FloorPlay 2012

Saturday November 24th 2012 we kicked off the second annual Bentall FloorPlay Tournament. What’s this you ask? Well, we first conceived the idea for a ball hockey tournament in 2011 to try to take advantage of the 12 levels of parkade which resides at the back entrance to the Athletic Club. The parkade is often empty after business hours and with some careful consideration, we decided ball hockey was most suited for our underground sporting arena. Voila – FloorPlay!  So, this year’s event was a huge success and big thanks to the 10 teams and 4 sponsors for coming out and bringing such enthusiasm and fun personalities to the event.

It seems our equation for success was simple and timeless…  Hockey, Music, Beer and Pizza!!!

Before I tell you more about the proceedings of event day, I want to tell you a little more about our partner and charity for the event: Inspire Health. They are an integrative health care clinic in British Columbia that provides cancer care programs for all walks of life. Whether you’ve been diagnosed with cancer, or have someone close to you who’s been affected by cancer, or even just trying to decide what are the best choices to avoid cancer… then InspireHealth is there for you.

InspireHealth is a group physicians & health care professionals who have created cancer care treatment and wellness programs to manage people’s care based on the newest knowledge and evidence based research regarding cancer and prevention. They coined the term “thrivorship” which implies that thriving in your life through a healthful diet, physical activity, stress management, psychosocial support, community involvement, and avoidance of environmental toxins, are all key ingredients to avoid cancer, and recurrence.

We’re proud to report at we collectively raised $3430.00 for InspireHealth through the 2012 Floorplay event. Also big congratulations to Mike Pover at Rize Alliance for winning the Bentall Shield who personally raised $625 as well through his team the FloorSkins raised an astounding $1075. Wow excellent work!

Last, the winners of the 2012 Bentall FloorPlay tournament was Architrix Design Studio in a nail biting 13-12 finish against KPMG. The score was actually tied 12-12 at the final whistle and went on a further 6 minutes of sudden death overtime. It was amazing to see two teams so evenly matched and perform under pressure. The stick handling was near perfect and it was amazing to see the hockey skills and occasionally the ball magnificently plucked out of the air off the stick to save a goal. Voted Most Valuable Player  for the tournament – Chris Guy, and Man of the Match David Hasson for ripping in the tournament winning goal.

Best Attire and Team Spirit: Multiple Scorgasims

Overall Ranking
1st: Architrix Design Studio
2nd: KPMG
3rd: Marsh
4th: Shockers ( BC Paramedics )
5th: SmytheRatcliffe
6th: Floorskins
7th: Abbarch Architecture
8th: Multiple Scoregasms
9th: Panthers

A big thanks to the Sponsors: SmytheRatcliffe, KPMG, Marsh, Architrix Design Studio, Arbonne: Johanna Hunt and Annka Raskin and Dj All Tunes.  Thanks to Robin Russell, Mike Hall, Greg, Bentall Kennedy, Bro Jake at Rock 101.9, InspireHealth, Lionel Wilson, Sinead Keane, Dale Walters, Brian Kaplain and Ben and the Rigside Lounge…  This event would not be possible without you.

Thursday, November 15, 2012

2012 FloorPlay Ball Hockey Rules

Hello Ball Hockey Enthusiasts! Just a little update regarding the Event set for Saturday, November 24th 2012. The Bentall Centre Athletic Club will open at 9am to Welcome you, and get the ball rolling! For the next hour, we'd like you to get the members of your team organized and waivers signed and warm up. At 9:45am we will all gather in pakade for a little kick off, and the first Ball will drop at 10am.

Please remember to bring warm clothes and perhaps a Blanket and your dancing shoes as it can get chilly in the parking lot between games. Food and Beverages will be provided to all teams from the Ringside Lounge.  The event is expected to run until 4/5pm. A final draft of tournament schedule will be posted here by Thursday, November 22nd. 

 Bentall FloorPlay Rules

4 on 4 Ball Hockey. Seven Per Team

2 x 10 minute half’s. 5 mins between games

Waivers signed by before tournament by all FloorPlay hockey participants

Gloves will be worn at all times.  Helmets and eye-wear encouraged

One female per team, and each female must attempt to play the equivalent of one half per game.

Closed toed shoes are mandatory

Free shot at center will be awarded as penalty for any of the following infractions:
i)                   No body-checking or over aggressive contact. 
ii)                 Checking a player while retrieving a ball from the corners is prohibited.
iii)               No sticks above the waist (as a normal high stick is shoulder).
iv)               No handling the ball in front in defense or in front of net.
v)                 No goal tending or stepping into the goal crease by either team unless the ball has already entered the crease.
vi)               No diving. All Players shall remain on their feet.
vii)             One cannot score from your own side of half.

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Bentall FloorPlay 2012 - A Ball Hockey Tournament

Are you a sports fan? An aspiring hockey player? Someone who wants to make a difference towards cancer care in British Columbia?  If so, we need you and a team of your friends or colleagues to join us to help change the game of cancer care with the Bentall FloorPlay – A Ball Hockey tournament!  Support InspireHealth, Canada’s leading integrative cancer care centre, providing world-class survivorship programs for cancer patients and their families. www.inspirehealth.ca

To Register CLICK: http://Bentall-Floor-Play-2012.kintera.org/faf/r.asp?t=3&i=1046566

You will be playing for the coveted Bentall Cup … which looks suspiciously like the Stanley Cup … but nicer. The names of the players from the winning team will all be engraved on the Bentall Cup. The team that raises the most funds for Inspire Health will be awarded the coveted Bentall Shield.

Floor Play Hockey Tournament
Saturday, November 24th 
at The Bentall Centre Athletic Club
Lower Plaza of the Bentall Four
1055 Dunsmuir Street Vancouver

Tournament Details - The second annual Bentall Floor Play Ball Hockey Tournament will be held in the Thurlow Parkade of Bentall Tower Four.  Sixteen teams will go head to head in a 4 on 4 double-knock style tournament. Proceeds will go to InspireHealth, Canada’s leading integrative cancer care program.  

The event starts at 9:00 am on Saturday, November 24th. The first ball will drop at 10am. Complimentary refreshments and food will be provided for players in the Ringside Lounge. All participating teams will receive T-shirts, food, refreshments and a chance to win the “Bentall Floor Play Ball Hockey” cup. DJ Alltunes will be mixing it up all day to provide a festive atmosphere that will rock the downtown core!

Each team of 4 is allowed to invite up to three subs (who are included in the entry fee) to a total of 7 per team. Extra players are encouraged to make a donation to InspireHealth instead of a registration charge. The tournament will consist of 16 teams, the games will be officiated, played 4 on 4, and consist of two 10 minute halves.

Floor hockey players are reminded to bring a hockey stick and gloves . We encourage co-ed teams. Games feature small nets without goalies and non-contact fun hockey. Friends and family are welcome to play or just come and enjoy the event.

To Register CLICK: http://Bentall-Floor-Play-2012.kintera.org/faf/r.asp?t=3&i=1046566

The registration fee is $50 per player or $250 for a team. Please call the Bentall Centre Athletic Club (604) 689-4424 and ask for Robin Russell for more registration details or email cameron.a.hunt@gmail.com.  Invite your family and friends to come down and play. If you don’t have a team to join, then sign up as an individual and we will draft you to a team. 

The Bentall Floor Play tournament takes place on levels 1 and 2 of the Thurlow Parkade, which can be found on the cul-de-sac of Eveleigh Street, just off Thurlow Street between Dunsmuir and West Pender. You can also find the Tournament by entering the Bentall Centre Athletic Club, which is located in the lower plaza of the Bentall Four at 1055 Dunsmuir Street Vancouver. www.bentallcentreathleticclub.com



Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Hell on Heels!!

As much as I hate to be the fashion police, (but after seeing this image) I’m forced to turn on the bright lights, get out my ticket pad, and write a few fashion citations. I know that high heels can be the finishing touch on any nice outfit, and how tempting it must be to just slip on those pumps and power through the day, but now I have to lay down the law, and send a discouraging message to those who frequent wearing high heels.

The first issue is with Posture. Clearly you can see from the first image that high heels make you step on the forefoot in what’s called plantar flexion. This causes the wearer to readjust the body to maintain balance…. the lower body leans forward, and the upper body leans back to compensate. It’s defiantly not your usual standing position. And what’s most concerning is your muscles and tendons are quite malleable and the tissues will respond and adapt negatively to the stress and tension through the distorted posture from high heels.

In regards to gait (steps), high heels don’t allow the wearer to push off the ground with as much force with the toes, this causes a need to bend the knee more, and use hip flexors to provide locomotion. This again throws off your balance, and can lead to lumbar (lowerback) flattening and displacement which is then transmitted upwards to the thoracic and cervical spine (upper back). Over time, the result can be pain and repetitive stress injury.  Heels increase compressive forces (Valgus) on the medial knee and is often linked to knee ache and in extreme cases can be a factor in the onset of osteoarthritis.

When it comes to the ankle, high heels shorten the gastrocnemius and soleus (calf) muscles and have been shown to increase forces through the Achilles tendon. This disrupts the distribution of force through the plantar fascia which has a continuous and direct myofascial link through entire superficial back line of the body. The fascia of the superficial back line starts in the toes, goes up the legs, through pelvis, back, and neck and then finally over the head through the exrtacranial fascia to finish the supraorbital ridge (above the eyebrows). My point is that if you have issues in any of the areas just mentioned, and you frequent high heels, I’m sorry to say that’s likely fashion that’s causing your dysfunction.

So, what to do? I’d like to keep it simple and say don’t wear’em. But… I’m sure some ladies out there can’t quit cold turkey. So as a rule: stick to heels under 2 inches, or at least alternate days between flats and heels. And last, if you must keep your fashionable foot favors, please only wear them for special occasions. And remember it’s not a fashion crime to feel comfortable and pain free.

Yours in Health


Friday, August 31, 2012

Vancouver Squash League at the Bentall Centre Athletic Club

Racquet sports have had a long and colorful history at the Bentall Centre Athletic Club. For more than 30 years our members and guests have been spending a significant portion of their fitness and recreation time playing Squash and Racquetball. For some, it’s a highly competitive game of strategy and consistency, and for others it’s a lighthearted way to have fun, burn off stress, and get some great exercise.

September is an important time of year for the Squash program at the Bentall Centre Athletic  Club  because it’s the beginning of the season. And if you’re interested, you can come and participate in many ways.

The first way is by joining the Club as an All facility Member. This opens the door to meeting with one of the Club’s Squash Pros, David Adams, who will get you on court, and then help you get established in Club's Box Leagues or Club Ladder.   These in-house tournaments could be considered a more casual competition where you are added to a box and given a certain time to contact your opponents and schedule a match to play at your mutual convenience… it can be either before work,  lunch, or in the evenings.  Points are awarded depending on the outcome of each match and then used in an algorithm to fairly decide a Club ranking. This also provides information to the pros on how to develop the next Box League and situate you on the Club Ladder. There is also a “Pick and Play” list (which is easier again) and set up like a contact list of time to time players. It's ideal if you’d rather show up, play, and not keep track of scores.

The next way to get playing Squash is by joining the Bentall Centre Athletic Club to participate in the Vancouver Squash League. For 18 years, Andrew Lynn our head squash professional & assistant manager has led the charge in organizing and facilitating the Squash league.  It involves 80-85 people consisting of 11 men’s and woman’s teams from division 1 to division 7 who regularly commit to a rotating league of interclub play on Monday nights. Each team consists of 5 players (and a couple of spares) who play either here at home, or travel around to play at the 15 other Clubs throughout the city. So, if you want to be involved in the Squash community and enjoy the social aspect of competitive team sports, I highly recommend you visit the Club to get started. You’d typically need to commit a minimum of 3 hours once per week plus a little more for travel, practice and social gatherings. The season spans from October to April.

There are also some important dates that I’d like share with you about the Squash calendar at the Bentall Centre Athletic Club:
  1. The Season Opener. On Sept 12th 2012 there is an in house tournament that helps decide the pecking order of the Club players. It helps establish ability levels and provides information on how best to distribute the talent throughout the divisions. Plus, it’s fun to go head to head against your comrades who will be your teammates for the rest of the season.
  2. The Halloween Open. Needless to say it’s at the end of October. Like any official tournament, it’s open to anyone and hosted by the Bentall Centre Athletic Club.
  3. The International Day Tournament. Generally in late January. Stay tuned for more info.
  4. The Handicap Challenge. Hosted by David Adams every Monday evening after the Vancouver Squash League has concluded in April. It’s light hearted and fun. It’s also accessible for every level of ability.

For more information about the Squash Programs at the Bentall Centre Athletic Club please contact Andrew Lynn at alynn@bentallkennedy.com or call the Club at 608 689 4424.

Yours in Health,


Thursday, August 9, 2012

Liver Health & Liver Wellness

The Liver, What is it?
The liver is the largest internal organ in the body. It keeps us healthy with over 500 functions dealing with digestion and detoxification. Notably, the liver breaks down and metabolizes the food we eat in terms of carbohydrate, fat and protein, as well as purifies the blood from foreign chemicals and internally made hormones. The liver helps regulate blood sugar levels, can store some nutrients, synthesize blood proteins, and has a remarkable capacity to repair itself when damaged.

Liver Cleansing foods
Our habitual diet directly affects the health of our liver.  The foods shown in image are all natural items found to have a positive affect on the liver’s function. Some people believe that dietary cleanses and supplementation are the way to restore ideal liver function, and others (like this author), believe it’s better to just regularly include the garlic, green tea, avocado, spinach, turmeric, arugula, cruciferous vegetables, and citrus in their diet on a regular basis. Also it best to remove large helpings of alcohol, red meats and deep fried foods.

Follow the link to NaturalNews it has an awesome reference page and peer reviewed information regarding nutrition and other natural topics including NaturalPedia, Healing Food Reference, and the Herb, Supplement and Nutrient Reference. 

Liver Cleansing Exercise
Besides diet, Exercise is the other half of the equation when it comes to keeping your liver healthy.  By participating in any type of vigorous physical activity for 45+ minutes every day, you will find the key to unlock the door to fountain of youth… and long term health for your liver.  Exercise helps maintain hormonal balance, correct blood pressure, reduces stress, clears your pores through sweat, and ensures your bones are strong, but most importantly: exercise keeps fat away from your waistline.  Through much research, exercise physiologists have found the likelihood of contracting cardiovascular disease very high in men with waist sizes greater than 94cm or 37inches, and women with waist sizes greater than 80cm or 31 1/2inches. The moral of the story is excess fat around your waist which covers your internal organs will kill you in the long run. The correct balance between the right amount of exercise and diet is a little different for everyone, however to find out more about what is right for you… come visit The Bentall Centre Athletic Club in the Lower Plaza of Bentall 4 - 1055 Dunsmuir Street, Vancouver, BC. 

Liver Conscious Personal Care Products: Arbonne!
When our bodies are in contact with environmental pollutants, process foods and chemically laden cosmetics our bodies become stressed and liver can be overworked and overloaded. Some toxins can come from the environments we habituate, but others can be found sneaking into our daily routine (besides diet) through regular home care products like soap, shampoo, conditioner, toothpaste, skin lotion, SPF, deodorant, and the list goes on. The average person uses about 12 personal care products a day. And unless you have a background in organic chemistry it’s sometimes difficult to differentiate between what is healthy and what is not. This is where Johanna who is an Independant Arbonne Consaultant can help you choose the best products to suit your needs. http://www.johannahunt.myarbonne.ca Arbonne produces premium botanical and 100% Vegan and gluten free wellness products who ensure that all their products are free of harmful ingredients. You may not be able to control things like air pollution, or hazardous building materials, but you can control what goes on your skin, and  therefore reduce contaminants from your liver and other internal organs. To obtain a free sample, or place an order:  follow the link to reach Johanna Hunt at Welcome Your Wellness. call: 604 848 9576.

Eastern Philosophy: The Liver Meridian & Ohashiatsu
Dating back 3000 years or so, wellness practitioners in the East have observed and charted out a series of Ki (or Chi, or Prana) energy flows in the body. These Ki flows or 12 energy meridians have great significance to wellness and the anatomy in terms of the natural course of neural pathways, circulation, myofacial tracts and philosophical issues. Overall, using meridian theory could be seen as a more holistic approach in terms of body wellness incorporating both the emotional and the physical. One of the 12 Ki meridians is the Liver which is described emotionally by livelier characteristics such as anger, tears, shouting and control and physically follows a path from the big toe up the interior side of the leg past the liver and finishing at the 6th rib (see image above).  By using massage and pressure point acupressure and a specially developed system of movements, Ohashiatsu can affect the receiver in a profound and effective way for strengthening, healing, relaxation, tension release and energy balance. I will be offering sessions at The Bodystorm Gym in Squamish on Monday , Wednesday and Thursday.  Visit witnessyourfitness.ca for more information.

By appointment only. Please contact cameron.a.hunt@gmail.com to book a private session.

Click for more details about body work and Ohashiatsu.

Hope to see you soon.


Friday, July 27, 2012

Assisted Myofascial Stretching

As a Kinesiologist I've seen a great need for more joint mobility and muscular flexibility. Quite admittedly for most, they don’t feel like: 1) have time, 2) expertise, or 3) enjoyment to obtain the abundance of benefits from participating in regular muscle and fascia stretching. I hear reports all the time that people are unable to schedule it in, find the right stretch, or are unsure of how tightening and loosening their bodies can affect the way they sit,stand, sleep or play sports. To address this, I have developed 1:1 stretch sessions to help people overcome the barriers above, and get people moving their bodies in ways that will provide long term benefits, increased athletic performance, and enhanced recovery. 

So, next I’d like to tell you a little about Fascia and what is Assisted Myofascial Stretching.

“Myofascia is the fascinating biological fabric and glue that holds us together.” … according to Thomas Myer a brilliant anatomist who in the last decade mapped out a series of myofascial tracts or “Anatomy Trains” in our bodies which collectively enable us to move and stand independently as humans. Myofascia is a term that describes the soft tissue of component of connective tissue (collagen and fibrin) that provides support and protection for most structures within the human body, including muscle. Thistissue can become restricted due to psychogenic disease, overuse, trauma, emotional stress, infectious agents, inactivity, which often results in pain, muscle tension, and corresponding diminished blood flow, and then nervous disruption . Although fascia and its corresponding muscle are the main targets of myofascial release, other surrounding tissue may be also affected including organs and structural connective tissues.
As in most tissue, irritation of myofascia or muscle connective causes local inflammation. Chronic inflammation results in fibrosis, or thickening of the connective tissue, and this thickening causes pain and irritation, resulting in reflexive muscle tension that causes more inflammation. In this way, the cycle creates a positive feedback loop and can result in ischemia and somatic dysfunction even in the absence of the original offending agent. Myofascial techniques aim to break this cycle through a variety of methods acting on it in multiple stages of the cycle.
Myofascial techniques generally fall under the two main categories of passive (client stays completely relaxed) or active (client provides resistance as necessary), with direct and indirect techniques used in each.
The passive method which I regularly employ, involves a gentle stretch, with only a few grams of pressure, which allows the fascia to 'unwind' itself. The dysfunctional tissues are guided along the path of least resistance until free movement is achieved. The gentle traction applied for often 3-5 mins to different chains of restricted fascia results in heat, increased blood flow, and maximize the fascias elastic properties. This allows the body's inherent ability for self correction to return, thus eliminating pain and restoring the optimum performance of the body. Research has shown that it can take up to 9 minutes to stretch connective tissues.

The benefits of myofascial release can also be obtained in many ways besides assisted stretching. Exercise, Yoga, Acupuncture, Massage or good ol' passive stretches will usually suffice if done diligently. It's up to you to find the best way to attain the optimal amount of body work to eliminate body pain. Contact me to get your body a tune up. witnessyourfitness.ca
Thanks Thomas Myers, Carol Manheim, Massimo De Angelis, and Wikipedia for helping me get my facts straight.


Thursday, July 12, 2012

Healthy Spices

It's no surprise that some things are better for you to eat than others. Here's a nice summary of some spices that can help your wellness. I wouldn't recommend putting them all in the same dish... although come to think of it... I'm pretty sure they are all ingredients of Vietnamese Pho noodle soup.  Happy Cooking.


Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Cancer Patients Benefit When Engaged in Fun Exercise Routines

Today’s post was written by our guest David Haas from Syracuse, New York. He is a cancer support group and awareness program advocate at the Mesothelioma Cancer Alliance in the US. We are very pleased to have his blog contribution and he can be contacted at davdhaas@gmail.com

Creating fun exercise routines is important for people with cancer.  Cancer patients go through a tremendous amount of physical, mental, and emotional stress throughout the duration of the disease.  Everyone handles cancer differently and the disease is extremely severe in some people where forms of exercise can seem almost impossible to accomplish.  Because of this, it is important to create an exercise routine and schedule that is tailored to the individual’s personal needs, health level, and physical ability.

One of the biggest signs of failure when creating an exercise and fitness regiment is making a fitness schedule that is not varied.  Variation is not only important to keep a person motivated and inspired, but it is also important to work out different parts of the body.  While some people may be able to begin with moderate levels of exercise, others may feel strong enough to start with a bit more intense of a workout schedule.  It is important for cancer patients to consult with a physician before beginning any regular workout or fitness schedule.  Medically monitored fitness routines can greatly benefit a person who has mesothelioma cancer, or different forms of cancer.  

In the past exercise was largely discouraged by cancer patients. But in 1996 research by Dr. Donald McKenzie at The University of British Columbia and his program “A Breast in a Boat”, proved that exercise was very beneficial to the survival and recovery of cancer patients.

It is advisable to get a doctors opinion to monitor a person’s workout schedule and help the individual decide when it is safe to increase time frames on fitness sessions.  This provides a safe and effective way of working out for cancer patients.  Live Strong is a nationally known in the US that provides valuable information on exercise and nutrition for people who want to increase the quality of their lives.  On the Live Strong website is a list of fun physical activities and information on how to put variety into an active physical fitness schedule is provided.  

For people local to Vancouver, there is an organization called Inspire Health who provide integrative care for cancer patients, their families, and those who are healthy and wanting to get ahead of the to make the best lifestyle choices to keep cancer at bay.

These organizations suggest that people who enjoy walking, hiking, or jogging alternate their courses and take a different route each time they go out.  In addition to mixing up the courses with neighborhood walks, mall walks, seaside walks, and nature hikes, and jogging on trails, the site also suggests recording distances and creating distance goals for the near future.  It is also helpful to set a pace goal.  Setting a pace goal can help a person strive towards completing a certain distance within a specific time frame.  This activity can help to provide wonderful cardio exercise as well as strengthen muscles in the body by pushing them further.

Walking, hiking, and jogging are ideal exercises for cancer patients because these forms of exercise can be as mild or as strenuous as a person desires.  People who are beginning exercise routines with very little energy can begin a mild walk every other day for ten minutes, or for the amount of time a person feels up to walking.  Times and distances can be increased to maximize the physical benefits a person receives from exercising.  

In addition to these fitness activities, golfing, horseback riding, bowling, and swimming are also ideal forms of fitness that help to keep a person with cancer active and physically in shape.

Thanks David Haas. It’s great to see people out there spreading the good word about the benefits of regular exercise and physical activity.



Friday, June 8, 2012

Witness Their Fitness

After a small hiatus in blogging I’d like to tell you about what happened about a month ago.

In April, we kicked off the 17th annual Bentall Kennedy Fitness Month which involved 29 fitness & wellness events in 30 days for 240 corporate employees involving all types of physical activity, eating right, and team spirit!

The events commenced with the Bentall Centre Athletic Clubs head to toe Health and Fitness Appraisal (HFA) which helps the participants reveal their body’s current state of wellness regarding body composition, musculoskeletal fitness, lifestyle habits, and vital signs. The rest of the programming involved:  a fiercely competitive 5 week Wallyball tournament (indoor Volleyball), The Vancouver 10km Sun Run and training camp, indoor rock climbing, a North Shore hike to Quarry Rock, a Ski and Snow day at Mt. Seymour, Yoga, Boxing, Golf, Frisbee Golf, and 8 bootcamp style core, spin, and fitness classes.

Now that’s variety.

I’m pleased to report that 40 of our most regular participants made a log of their physical activity during April’s fitness month events which tallied up to 224 attendances and 881 hours of physical activity. Yeah! That’s what I call a work/lifestyle balance.

That means on average we had about 22 hours of exercise of per person for the week of April. Great stuff, however our overall goal is to encourage people to get active every day for about an hour, which on average leaves us a few hours short per person this year.

However, some far exceeded this expectation… and I’d like to give a big congratulations to David Kwan for being out top participant and logging 45 hours of activity and a whopping 85 points. Hooo Raaah David!

Lastly, it’s great to be involved with a company such as Bentall Kennedy who is very conscientious about their employee’s wellness and encourage participation in fun and engaging fitness programs like this, and also who welcome the families to be involved as much as possible for the fitness events.

In closing I’d like to communicate to you the message endorse to all of our clients and that is:  to get active, eat healthy, and be regular about it. Feelin’ good is worth it. And the best way to get feel good is to get regular exercise, stretch often, and watch what (and how much) you eat from time to time.


Cameron – Fitness Month Leader.
Registered Kinesiologist
Athletic Director – The Bentall Centre Athletic club

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Cancer Prevention with Inspire Health

On April 11th 2012 Bentall Kennedy’s Fitness month hosted Dr. Janice Wright to tell us about evidence based cancer care and prevention. Dr. Wright is a physician with Inspire Health which is a non-profit society established in 1997 which is recognized as a national leader in Cancer care. Here is a summary of the principles at Inspire Health which they use as a platform for wellness promotion and cancer prevention & treatment.

         Person empowerment and the right to choose
         Whole-person approach – Not just the sum of the parts
         Self-efficacy and engagement vs. passive and dependent
         Belief in our body’s ability to heal
         Focus on prevention
         Healthy role modeling by health care professionals
         Transforming fear associated with a cancer diagnosis into inspired action
         The optimal time-frame to engage and be inspired is during the ‘window of opportunity’ soon after diagnosis
         Ripple effect to family, friends and community
         Group work provides support for this shift
         Evidence based, wisdom-informed: 7,000+ research abstracts

For more information regarding Inspire Health’s unique life-changing cancer care and recovery programs they can be reached online at www.inspirehealth.ca or by calling 604 734 7125. There office is located at 200-1330 West 8th Avenue, Vancouver, BC, V6H 4A6.

So, here’s a summary of 5 interesting points regarding cancer care that Dr. Wright addressed in her talk. *** This (of course) is in conjunction to participation in regular vigorous physical activity and stretching!!

1) Don’t eat Peanuts or Peanut butter. Period.
Aflatoxins clearly linked to liver cancer
Recommendations: avoid peanuts or peanut butter.
*Safe, healthy tree nut butter options: almond butter, cashew butter

2) Broccoli and Green tea
Not necessarily to be eaten together, but they have been shown to be cancer reducing for both men and women by regularly including them in your diet. 

3) Sleep
Lack of sleep and stress are some of the leading causes of immune- suppression. Try to get as much undisturbed, high quality sleep, with uninterrupted darkness... It is an unappreciated endogenous mechanism of cancer prevention. ( That means if your body is adequately rested your immune system can fight illness better)

4) Laughter
Sing, Dance, Laugh. Basically have some fun.

5) Minimize Toxin Exposure
This is a no brainer: Don’t Smoke Tobacco.

Another underappreciated way to minimize toxin exposure is to watch what you put on your skin. The average person uses 12 products a day on their skin from hand soap, body soap to shampoo & conditioner, shaving cream and cosmetics. In this stuff is a cesspool of mineral oil and nasty chemicals that end up directly in your bloodstream through contact with your skin and can directly affect your body’s health. To find out more about the worlds healthiest skin care products from Arbonne click: http://welcomeyourwellness.myarbonne.ca/ or contact johanna@myarbonne.ca (ID:115531483) 
Dirty Dozen:
Here is a list of the common fruits containing the most pesticides and harmful residues. Y’know… the ones at the supermarket that don’t have the organic label! Additionally,  Dr. Wright mentioned imported grapes are some of the worst culprits for holding chemicals with in due to the thinness of the skin. Wash them all before you eat them, and avoid the ones listed below if you are unsure of its origins or farming practice.
  1.  Peach
  2. Apple
  3. Bell Pepper
  4. Celery
  5. Nectarine
  6. Strawberries
  7. Cherries
  8. Kale
  9. Lettuce
  10. Grapes (Imported)
  11. Carrot
  12. Pear

That’s about it for now. Thanks to Inspire Health and Dr. Janice Wright for speaking to us about how we can stay healthy and live longer.


Thursday, April 5, 2012

Fitness Month

Every April, for the past 18 years BentallKennedy ( the owners of the Bentall Centre Athletic Club) has put on a heath and wellness fare for their 250 employees in the Vancouver business district. "Fitness Month" as we call it, consists of 36 fitness classes, outdoor recreation, and wellness seminars in 30 days. It has been my pleasure to be the coordinator of Fitness Month for the past 5 years, which has brought a great deal of fun, wellness and healthy living to each of the participants, as well as myself.

Here's some details about what's happened this month so far.

Snowday at Mt. Seymour on April 1st wasn’t anyone’s fool. The thick fog lifted to present a perfect afternoon of fresh soft snow and unlimited sunshine!! For the first time in 5 years the clouds lifted to make for a perfect Bentall Snowday. Yaahoooo.

After we assembled approximately 60 of us in The Three Peaks Lodge at 9am, everyone grabbed their tickets and rental passes and ventured off in roughly 5 directions. First, the Tubers and Tobagganers hit the park, next the snowshoers headed out with their guided tour, while the skiers and snow grabbed their equipment and headed for lessons, and the young parents (me & Johanna) held down the fort in the lodge. Everyone had a blast!! As usual, the lunch Mt. Seymour lunches from the Grillworks were below average, but everyone happily munched back French fries, dogs, soda, or cardboard pizza. No one seemed to mind.

On Tuesday April 3rd the regular season of Wallyball kicked off with some serious ricochets and great team enthusiasm. Denial of Service took the early lead winning both games and only allowing 41 points against. The Outcasts also winning 2 games, but allowed 44 points against which placed them in second position. Daily Special: SERVED hot and SPIKED took third with the strongest effort in the one win and one loss category. I’m very interested to see how things play out next week.

Have a great Easter Break, and we’ll see you week for the Cancer Prevention seminar and next Sunday for the Vancouver 10km Sun Run!



Thursday, January 12, 2012

It’s a new year!!! Wow - 2012. For some, now is the time to kick-start that new Strength and Fitness Program, but for others, now only marks halfway in a dedicated training program which can lead to the peak of physical fitness in the coming months.

Regardless of where your fitness lies, with the seasonal festivities out of the way, now is the perfect time to settle down, get some work done and Reward Yourself with Exercise. After years of working with every type of athlete, from serious to recreational, I've seen the affects of regular exercise and the resulting fitness that spans positively into every aspect of their life. I’d also like to emphasize how important the consistency is, and not just the intensity that makes the difference.

Ok, maybe you knew that? But keep reading.

It’s important to pick activities that you find fun, enjoyable, and challenging. Here 's the top 7 reasons why I think you should set your physical training program to top of your priorities this year ... and stick to it.

  • Feel Good about Yourself – Bulk up or Trim Down.
  • Energize the Mind
  • Go Faster, Higher, or Stronger
  • Reduce Your Work Stress
  • Beat the Winter Blues (or that nasty cold that everyone else has.)
  • Improve those Trouble Areas or Ailments
  • Have Some Fun

FYI: Here are some of the services I can offer you this year as a Registered Kinesiologist through The Bentall Centre Athletic Club

1) An Exercise Appraisal
– As a Bentall Club member, come for free and set your Fitness Benchmark to Witness your own improvements through out the year with your VO2max(aerobic capacity), Body Composition, Musculoskeletal Ability, and Body Kinesthetics.

2) A Personal Training Coach – Strength and Fitness sessions which are both effective and engaging which aim to leave you inspired ... not expired.

3) Outdoor Recreation – Believe it or not there is a vast array of Trail Running, Mountain Biking, and Climbing right at our doorstep. Let me be you guide through a lucrative personal stock of Vancouver’s best inner city single track and outdoor fun… And be back in the office with in an hour!!!

4) Functional Capacity Evaluations – If you require FCE’s or medical legal documents we offer ½ day to 2 day evaluations which are used to objectively evaluate a client’s present functional capacity and physical limitations. The reports are clear & concise and provide the readers with a better understanding of a client’s current ability. This service is available in conjunction with Marpole Physiotherapy and Rehabilitation and uses the BTE Functional Testing Systems which employs highly accurate real time monitoring and standardized testing procedures with reference to peer reviewed literature. These reports set a new standard for the quality and speed of production of the Functional Capacity Evaluation.

Lastly, here's my focus this year as a Kinesiologist as I endeavor to improve my wellness craft: I have found great interest in these topics and will add them more completely to the list above shortly. I'm training in...

  • Ohashi Shiatsu – Studying with Ohashi Institute to get a better understanding for the healing arts. www.ohashiatsu.org
  • Anatomy Trains – Advanced Posture Training to gain more knowledge of myofacial meridian theory by Thomas Myer and apply it to specific posture training techniques to restore balance to people’s bodies through movement. www.anatomytrains.com
  • Gymnastic Strength Training – to integrate some of the proven essentials of gymnastic body-weight strength exercises for real functional strength improvements for myself and my clients. Via Christopher Sommer. http://gymnasticbodies.com/

Here's to a great year in WELLNESS!!!