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The Most Important Goal of All

Oh goals. I set them every month. Sometimes I do fabulous. But lately? Errrm not so much. I set a handful at the beginning of the month. Here, 30 days later, I haven’t accomplished any of them.

  1. I didn’t do a very good job of “cleaning up my diet.” Whatever that means. But I did eat some of the best food of my life in California!
  2. I didn’t run outside four times. I did it three times. The last one was cold, windy and downright miserable. I’ve been on the treadmill ever since.
  3. My room is a disaster. Why I thought I could keep it clean for the first time in my life is beyond me.
  4. Days off? What are those? :P
  5. I did have tons of fun, but the work/life balance thing still needs, um, work.

I thought long and hard about what I wanted to do for December. It will be a crazy month with half of it spent back home in the Maritimes. Not to mention the family, old friends, food, booze and shenanigans that come with the holidays!

It would be easy to set goals like “one sweet a day,” or “drink lots of water,” or “work out 5 times a week.” But those just don’t feel important to me anymore. Focusing on these little things no longer feel like the best thing for my well-being.

So instead, I am entering the month of December with one important goal. One that will take a lot concentrated effort to accomplish. Something I will have to nag myself about several times daily, but also help me end the month feeling like I’ve done a lot to better myself.

For me, December will be all about ending fat talk.

This is where the confession comes in. I’ve gotten really bad about fat talk lately. Ever since I fell victim to the Toronto Ten, I rarely look myself in the mirror and think good things. Thoughts cross my mind that I wouldn’t in a million years think of uttering to other people. And yet somehow, I think I can get away with saying them to myself. Insecurities about “looking the part” of a personal trainer, being single, and a healthy living blogger.

If there’s one thing I know, it’s that you get back what you put out into the world. I’ve been a Negative Nancy for too long now. I am living the exact life I carved out for myself when I first started daydreaming about moving to Toronto. I don’t want to let my hurtful thoughts get in the way of that.

December is an easy time to fall victim to fat talk. I’m sure we’ve all eaten one holiday cookie too many, then told ourselves we’re fat and useless after. I don’t want to spend my holidays doing that. I want to feel good about my body again and put some positive energy out there! I will look in the mirror and notice all the beautiful things about myself.

So this month, I am putting an end to all that fat talk. One goal that I am driven to achieve. One goal that will affect my life more than keeping my room clean (although my mother may beg to differ). One goal I hope you can join me in achieving :)

When you look in the mirror this month, say a few good things to yourself. Your spirit will thank you.


Happy Hanukkah to my Jewish friends!


A Poor Showing

Ohdear. October has whizzed passed without my noticing and it seems November is already upon us. You know what this means, a check in on those Monthly Goals. Not sure if you can tell yet, but there is a lack of enthusiasm in my voice here.

October started out with so much promise. I dedicated a whole blog post to setting goals. I made some stellar ones for myself that was going to get my life in tip top shape all the while having some fun too.

Ummm… not sure, but “hell in a handbasket” isn’t far from the appropriate term here.

Suddenly, I found myself working 15 hour days and trying to spend all spare time with my visiting family. But I am not here to make excuses. Let us revise.


Goals for October

Digitize all my training programs.
Did not happen. Will not happen. But I did make nice new program cards!

Dedicate at least one hour a week to unpaid commitments.
Did not happen.

Finally get my categories organized for better navigation.
Did not happen.

Make one new supper recipe each week.
I cooked a few good recipes, however made no new recipes.

Run outside four times.
Happened!! *fist pumps*

Do something fun once a week.
Double happened! Even with my crazy work hours, I still found time on weekends to go out with friends or do something I loved. Bonus points for Halloween, where I definitely celebrated October with a bang ;)


So with such a poor showing for October, I am trying to set realistic and achievable goals for November. You see, November is shaping up to be another busy month! I’m in San Francisco for the Foodbuzz Festival next weekend. The weekend after that, I’m doing my Nutrition & Wellness course!


Goals for November

Clean up my diet. It’s been, um, messy. More green stuff, less refined sugar stuff.

Run outside four times. I’m doin’ it! In the cold!

Keep my room clean. I have this bad habit of dumping all my clean clothes on the floor so I don’t have to hang them up. It drives me nuts, yet I still do it. This November, my room will look like this:

Take a few days off. Relax. Explore my city some more. Hang out with friends. STUDY. This girl needs to restore that work/life balance.

Have FUN. Duh!! I’m going to CALIFORNIA this weekend!!!!!


Question of the Day: How did you do on your October goals? Please tell me you did better than me!! What are your goals for November?

Fitness Friday – Goal Setting

Hello and welcome to another Fitness Friday!! Today I’m actually combining two reoccurring topics into one – monthly goals + fitness.

For any newbies out there, I like to set a handful of goals at the start of every month. I check in a few times throughout the course of the month to keep on track. Doing this not only gives me motive to get things accomplished, but gets my readers thinking about goal-setting as well!

I’ll be reviewing my usual monthly goals at the end of the post, but first I want to talk about setting goals for fitness.

Friends, if you plan to include fitness in your everyday life, I want you setting fitness goals. Doesn’t matter how big or small. It can be running a marathon, or getting up to 6mph on the treadmill. Working towards goals give you a reason to get up and out there every day. They keep you working out and being active. But it’s important to choose your goals wisely.

In personal training (and in many other areas) we use something called S.M.A.R.T. goal setting. Okay, this is also probably something you used in middle school. As hokey as the acronym is, it’s really useful when thinking about what kind of goals to set. To be successful, you need to consider each letter!

Specific – Try to be as specific as possible with coming up with a goal. It’s hard to determine when a goal has been reached when it was vague to begin with. A lot of people come to me with the goal to “feel more energetic.” Which is great, but about as vague as you can get. In what areas of your life do you specifically want more energy? Climbing the stairs? Avoiding the afternoon slump? There is no such thing as a goal too specific. Don’t be scared to divide one big goal into several smaller ones.

Measurable – The best goals have hard numbers to back them up. Instead of “wanting to look leaner,” set a body fat goal. Instead of “getting stronger,” set a squat or chest press goal. Even better, write these numbers down and track your progress with hard evidence to see your improvements.

Attainable – You’ve just completed your first sprint triathlon and eyeing a full Ironman. Do you really have the time to dedicate to the training? Is that lingering shoulder injury really something that can be ignored? “Goals” are not “dreams.” We set goals to achieve them!

Realistic – If you’re 55 and looking to get down to your college weight, it’s time to re-evaluate and decide if this goal is really realistic at this point in your life. It’s great to reach for the stars, but don’t set yourself up for discouragement by setting your short-term sights too high.

Timely – Set a date and stick to it. To say you want to “run a marathon someday” is one thing. But to register and know it’s coming up will finally get you up and training.


I love talking about goals with my clients because it feels like we’re working towards something together. I also love sharing my own fitness goals with clients to remind them that even “pros” like myself still have things they want to work toward. Not only that, but that it’s possible to achieve those goals!


I know I have readers at all fitness levels. Here are just some ideas that you can borrow or expand into your own:

  • Run a 5k without walking
  • Complete a pull-up
  • Do 20 toe push-ups
  • Swim 1000m without stopping
  • Get your heels on the ground during downward dog!
  • Squat your bodyweight
  • 100 kettlebell swings
  • Run a 8 minute mile – or a 9 minute mile!
  • Shoulder stand in yoga
  • Using the olympic bar

And guess what… all of those have either been past goals or are current goals for myself! I think about all the little fitness things I want to accomplish and they all keep me working out everyday. None of these are specifically “body related.” But I guarantee that you will immediately feel better about your body and what it can accomplish when you hit these benchmarks :)

And now, without further ado, here is a recap of the goals I set for September!

1. Get organized. Compared to my lack of organization at the beginning of the month, I would say I achieved what I had in mind for this. It now means I’m lost without my day planner, but I’m much more on the ball with training appointments, to-do lists and other commitments.

2. Professional development. This was not such a success seeing as my Nutrition & Wellness course was postponed. However, I am halfway through the textbook already and have learned tons about exercise nutrition!

3. Turn on the oven. Ohbabyyes. My oven is finally getting some lovin’! Loaves of bread, shepherd’s pie, sweet potato fries… It’s just the beginning :)

4. Love my workouts. This is the one I did best on! I started doing yoga once a week again and LOVE it. I started a new lifting split that has me in the weight room four days a week. I’ve started running outside again and look forward to my time on the lakefront trail every Saturday morning. I am in a really, really good spot with exercise right now :)


September turned out to be a not-so-shabby month in terms of goals. But I’m hoping to really get my stuff together for October.

Goals for October

Digitize all my training programs.
So far I’ve been doing paper program cards, and I’d like to design a nice digital format that I can e-mail to clients for tracking.

Dedicate at least one hour a week to unpaid commitments.
On top of being an ambassador for The Simply Bar, I will also be volunteering with Girls On The Run (more on that in a future post). I’m also a member of the organizing committee for No Limits Canada and will be involved in some local running clinics. I’m a busy gal, and one hour will be my minimum requirement to keep this up.

Finally get my categories organized for better navigation.
My blog categories are a mess and my blog would be so much easier to search if they were better organized!

Make one new supper recipe each week.
Namely, a big ole’ dish that I can eat for leftovers all week.

Run outside four times.
It’s getting cold in the mornings. I will not wimp out.

Do something fun once a week.
You guys, I am now working on average 12 hours a day. I’m up at 5am every day. It’s so easy to fall into my old patterns of losing myself in work. It’s important I let loose once a week and forget about all my commitments and responsibilities :)


Now it’s your turn! What are your goals for October? What is your current fitness goal??