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Santa Monica Striders

22 Posts

Two Disgusting Words!

Posted by Tim Van Jun 3, 2009





As I work with clients these are perhaps the most frustrating words I can hear coming out of their mouths.  Its not because I don't understand.  Believe me I've used those words many times myself in the past and yet, my life didn't change until I stopped using them and neither will yours!


It goes kind of like this:


I just can't get myself to stop eating...


I can't seem to get up in the morning...


I can't find the energy after work...


I want to workout, but...


Tony Robbins once said; "The person who uses the word but all of the time usually has a big one!"


That may be a little harsh and yet it is the truth.  There is a country music song playing lately and the line that sticks out to me is: "Sounds like life to me."


We all have things that get in the way of some of the things we want to do.  Life will continue to happen all around you every single day for as long as you grace this world with your presence.  Its inevitable!  The only question then is;  What are you going to give your focus to?


I constantly hear people say they would love to work out but they have kids and they just can't find the time.  That one sentence has both of those disgusting words in it!  In fairness, I don't have any children, in fact I'm not even married or dating at the moment and so yes, my time is my time and yet...


I work 14 to 16 hours a day almost everyday and still find the time to go for a run.  And I realize, fitness is my business and so it would seem to most people that it should be easier to workout right?  Wrong!  Most of my time is spent in front of a computer, writing, typing, blogging, emailing, designing training programs.


And before I got into endurance fitness training, I worked 7 days a week 12 to 14 hours a day running a car dealership and that is definitely not conducive to a healthy lifestyle!


So how do I find 2 or 3 hours to train each day?


Its all about how important my health is to me. 


If you constantly find yourself saying, I want to but... your health is just not that important to you no matter what kind of lip service you give it.  If its really important to you then you will wake up an hour earlier or stay up an hour later or find a way to get someone else to watch the kids for a short period of time.  If its really important, you will make the time.


I know you're tired!  And, if you will just get with the program you will little by little find that you have more energy and vitality.  You'll find that the time you spend with your kids or your spouse or doing whatever else you have to do in life will be so much better because you made your health a priority.


I hear over and over again; my kids are my priority!  I completely, one hundred percent, unequivocally agree that they should be!  And consider this...


If you don't take care of yourself... who's going to take care of your kids when you can no longer do so because of your health.  You have to make the time. Period!  You have got to make your health an absolute must.  If you are the type of person who thinks its selfish to take time for yourself then don't think of it that way.  Think of it as taking time to make yourself a better parent or spouse or lover for those other people in your life.  If you fear not being there for them to give them what they need... it should be pretty easy to imagine what it would be like if you weren't around and I doubt you want that!


If you have found a way to get yourself to the gym or on the treadmill or out the door there's still one more thing we need to address.


Are you going through the motions or are you really working on improving?


When you first start out exercising, we take great care to make certain that at least for the first four weeks or so you don't push yourself too hard as your body gets used to its new demands.  Where the problem comes in is most people never get out of that initial conditioning phase.  In other words, they start going through the motions and as the same workload becomes easier they start to see diminishing returns and don't understand why.


As you're aerobic conditioning improves you have got to continue to challenge yourself.  How much?


I'm glad you asked...


With runners, as we begin to increase mileage we use a rule of thumb of no more than 10% increase in mileage per week.  If a runners long run is 4 miles one week, the next week we would increase it by 10% or basically a half mile and so their long run would then be 4.5 miles.


On a treadmill you should be using the same sort of principle for speed or time or both.  If you are walking at 3.5 mph for 40 minutes, the next week I would suggest 45 minutes at the same speed of 3.5.  The next week I would suggest 45 minutes at 3.9 mph (10% increase in speed).


This is where can't and but come into play.  It is going to be a little uncomfortable if you are pushing yourself.  I expect my clients to experience mild discomfort when they are training.  I'm referring to a low threshold soreness.  I am not talking about sharp jabbing pain.  You should be able to increase the speed on your treadmill by .1 or .2 or .3 mph in a week without extreme and sharp pains up to a certain speed.  If you can not then we need to address your form because something in the way you're moving is causing a problem.


My point is... you will have some soreness, I would be lying if I told you otherwise.  You never get more out than the effort you put in!


This is usually where I hear a whole bunch of I can'ts!  I just can't go any longer or I just can't go any faster than 2.3mph...




When you say you can't, guess what... you're absolutely right!  As long as you tell yourself you can't, you will never ever as long as you live be able to.  That applies to everything in life and you can absolutely take that to the bank!


When you stop saying I can't or but and start saying I can and I will things will start to change.  When you start to push yourself to go farther or a little bit faster or maybe to jog a little or even run... that's when the magic will begin to really happen!


Every day will not be perfect!  Guaranteed!  And yet more of them will be pretty darn good.  There will be times when you do everything right and get what is seemingly zero results.  If you were here with me and we took you to the lab and did all of the latest testing and then trained together everyday, there would still be weeks where you didn't feel like you made any progress.  Part of that is simply your body responding quickly to its new challenges and part of it is the fact that everything you do does not result in an immediate weight loss.  You are improving your cardiovascular strength and endurance, you are building muscle.  Never forget that your overall body composition is changing.  You may not experience weight loss all of the time as you gain muscle and lose fat and yet I'll bet you clothes will fit better!


And now I'll get off my soapbox and just repeat.


Start saying I CAN and I WILL!


Now go get active!

442 Views 0 Comments Permalink Tags: training, weight, walking, health, weight-watchers, tim-vanravenswaay, momentum-walk-it-challenge, santa-monica, focus

National Running Day

Posted by Tim Van Jun 3, 2009

I think its only appropriate that on National Running Day I remind you all to get signed up for the Culver City Run/Walk!


I know a couple of you have already and the day of the big event is fast approaching!  If you haven't already done so, go here:


Whether this is your first or your hundredth, there is nothing like the feeling of completing something like this!  If you never want to do this again, at least you can say you've done one and I'll bet, once you've done a 5k,you'll be looking for your next challenge!


Its an 8:30 am start so its even a litle later than we've been meeting on Saturdays!  No excuses!  You can do this, you know you can!  And you'll be glad you did!


Happy National Running Day!


Now go get active!

531 Views 0 Comments Permalink Tags: running, walking, inspiration, 5k, challenge, weight-watchers, tim-vanravenswaay, momentum-walk-it-challenge, santa-monica

May 20, 2009

Posted by Tim Van May 20, 2009

If you struggle to lose or maintain weight loss, in most cases it is not a diet by itself that makes the difference.  It is a lifestyle change.  Until you change the things that constantly cause you to gain weight and change what's important to you in life, you will always struggle with your weight.  As long as your constant focus is on loosing weight, its not going to happen.


This is one post from the blog of a gal who struggled with weight gain after having children and her realization that it was a lifestyle change not a diet that would ultimately make the difference.


Very Cool!



Have a great day and go get active!

453 Views 0 Comments Permalink Tags: running, weight, walking, 5k, challenge, weight-watchers, tim-vanravenswaay, momentum-walk-it-challenge, santa-monica

Many of you are aware that this past weekend I took part in the American Cancer Society's Relay for Life.  During the event teams of 8 to 15 members take turns walking on the track for 24 hours.  I signed up as an individual with the intention of doing the full 24 hours on my own.


Although it was just me doing the event, I was far from alone and I want to take a moment to sincerely thank each one of you who supported through kind words and donations.  I only had two and a half days to raise funds and was still able to come through with online and in  person donations with just over $500 for this great cause.  Wow, I have great friends and family!


The event itself was incredible.  The opening ceremony with the survivors taking the first lap on the track was awe inspiring.  It certainly makes our simple day to day problems and battles seem insignificant.  Outside of those of you who knew I was doing this relay for 24 hours by myself, I don't think anyone else knew.  This event was not about me and I certainly did not tell anyone at the event what I was  doing.  It just wasn't that important.


Here are a few tidbits, though.  A few little golden nuggets, so to speak from my experience doing this:


Approximate miles put in = 76 (walked just over 50, ran just under a marathon)


Steps on my pedometer before I turned it off = 20739 ( just over 12 miles based on my stride average) I turned it off after 3.5 hours because it kept falling off.


First time I sat down = 7 hours into the event (change shoes and socks)


Calories burned = 10,000 approximately


Calories consumed = 6,700 approximately (10- pb &  honey sandwiches, 4 large bagels, 3 24oz Gatorades)


Some things I learned:


It is absolutely possible to fall asleep in a canvas stadium chair after about 18 hours of walking/running no matter how uncomfortable it is!


My ipod will go from completely charged to completely dead in after 16 hours of continuous playing.


I am ready for my first 50 mile ultramarathon 6 months ahead of schedule!


I have very good biomechanics!


I was born to run not walk!


If it had been hot for more than 3 hours, I would have been toast!


At hour 20, cold, day old coffee tastes really good!


No matter what you do to fix it, a double blister will hurt until you stop.  Suck it up and get over it!


Ultra endurance is way more mental than physical and it is incredibly physical!


Hours 6 through 12 are much longer than hours 1 through 6 and hours 13 through 24, I don't know why!


Sometimes just the sight of another human being is enough to inspire you to keep moving.


I am nowhere near my limits!


I am completely, one hundred percent, beyond a shadow of a doubt, recovered from my heart attack!


If you want to do your first 5k, 10k or marathon stick with me, I'll get you there!



A sidenote:  I actually left prior to the closing ceremony of this event.  It was after all not about me!



Have an awesome day and go get active!

547 Views 1 Comments Permalink Tags: training, running, walking, inspiration, challenge, weight-watchers, tim-vanravenswaay, momentum-walk-it-challenge, santa-monica, relay-for-life

This is a re-post from my other blog


Okay, so yesterday about five miles into a twelve mile run I started to get hungry.  No big deal, I am certainly not going to pass out from being a little hungry during a run of that distance.


The problem was where my thoughts went.  I started to think about "rewarding" myself for a good run with a big juicy double-cheeseburger and fries from the local diner.


So, what's wrong with that?  Lot's of people do that.  I mean, come on!  I did the work, shouldn't I be able to reward myself for all of those calories burned?  What, after all is the point of working so hard if you can't enjoy the fruits of your labor?  Right?


You will not win this particular argument with me so don't bother trying.  I know the truth from personal and observed experiences.  I believe it is one of the major faults with a whole lot of the current weight loss programs on the market today.  They in one way or another offer you a "Cheat day" where as long as you're good the rest of the week, you can eat whatever you want for one day.


There are two problems with this approach.


First, if you're overweight, you didn't get there because you followed the best eating habits in the world.  Let's be honest.  I didn't get overweight because I did what was right for my body.  What did I do?  I ate the wrong foods and I ate them consistently.  Then as a form of appeasement, I'd go out for a run every once in a while and tell myself I was earning that double-cheeseburger and fries!


The rewards system, puts the total focus on food.  It creates a relationship with it that makes it  the total and only objective of exercise.  It even makes eating right the rest of the week something you do just so you can "pig-out" on that one day.  Using this type of system, you may;  in fact if strict enough... absolutely will, lose weight.  The problem is since the relationship is with food and not with exercise and all of its benefits, when you have difficulties in life and stop exercising for a period of time (which will inevitably happen, like it or not), you still have a relationship with food.  And food becomes your source of escape and comfort instead of exercise.


Whether we like it or even admit to it, all human beings operate out of one of two contexts most of the time.  We are either working to avoid pain or to gain pleasure.  You can deny this until you're blue in the face and yet the truth is whatever you are doing is moving you in one of those two directions.


Think about it for a second; when you finally decided to lose weight what was the motivating factor?  Were you tired of being embarrassed by your weight?  Were you afraid you might not be healthy enough to play with your grandchildren?  Or maybe, you wanted the joy of sharing a great moment running a race with your friends and you knew you needed to lose weight to do just that.  What ever your reason(s), you were avoiding pain or seeking pleasure.


What's the point?


For most of us, food has become a quick way to gain instant pleasure.  Even if in the long run, too much of the wrong stuff can cause extreme pain, in the moment when you are seeking escape from the pain of the moment, food offers instant relief.


And so, when you use food as a reward system for exercise you are setting yourself up to never be able to escape the cycle of using it as a tool for release.  And eventually, any gains you have made through exercise will be wiped out as you even substitute food for exercise to find relief in your day to day life.


The second reason to avoid using food as a reward after exercise is really only important if you are truly committed to getting the most out of your exercising body.


The period immediately after exercise, say 30 to 60 minutes, are the critical time for providing your body with the nutrients it needs for recovery.  Whether you are brand new to exercise or have been training for a long time, you need to make sure that you are giving your body exactly what it needs when it needs it. This is especially true during this post-workout time frame.


Post-workout, your body doesn't need just any old food you can throw down.  It needs a decent combination of protein and some high quality carbs.  Depending on your body weight you should being consuming 10 to 25 gms of quality lean protein within the hour after your workout.  This is the time when your body may have during exercise utilized protein (its least popular source of energy) to supplement the other sources of energy in your body depending on the intensity of your workout.  You need to replenish the protein in order for your muscles, tendons and ligaments to fully recover prior to your next workout.


You need the carbs to replenish what are known as glycogen stores in your muscles and liver.  Glycogen is the energy source used most often for quick bursts of strength and also during the initial stages of exercise before your aerobic system kicks into gear.  Glycogen is also utilized by your body when your aerobic system is over-taxed and can't produce energy, but the supply is very limited.  You may have heard of marathoners doing something called "carbo-loading".  The glycogen system is the focus of this practice.


All this being said, how do you avoid the food reward system?


You need to find something else to use as your reward.  And it has to be exciting for you!  Maybe its the shopping trip you're going to take when you reach a certain weight to replenish your closet.  Maybe its the 5k race you're going to complete with your friends and all of the excitement that goes along with that accomplishment.  Maybe its something as simple as rewarding yourself with a dip in the pool after a warm and exhausting workout.  It could even be a quick little nap, that just simply says to you; "Go ahead you've earned it!"


What ever it is you choose, its got to feel rewarding to you and it can't be food!  Sorry, I know that's a tough one but its the truth.  If you're really serious about this, you can't go on attaching everything in your life to food.  If you're not really concerned about enjoying a long and fulfilling active life where you get to enjoy your family and friends and grandchildren in good health, then by all means... eat what ever you want when ever you want.  You might as well get as much of it as you can while you still can!


I'm not saying you can't enjoy the food you eat.  Not by a long stretch.  You have just got to at some point beginning changing what you use to reward yourself and focus on those things instead of the quick escape of food.


Avoid the reward system and you'll find your results sticking around!


Have a great day and go get active!

431 Views 0 Comments Permalink Tags: running, fitness, walking, health, 5k, weight-watchers, tim-vanravenswaay, momentum-walk-it-challenge, santa-monica, focus, priority

May 9, 2009

Posted by Tim Van May 9, 2009

Another Saturday training session on the books!  We had a great session, with everyone feeling like they could have done more and still we were out for 50 minutes, twice what the schedule called for!  I think everyone should be as proud of their efforts today as I am of all of you!


That being said, there are many who have not even made one session yet and at the risk of offending, you need to make this a priority.  The question begs to be asked; “If not now... when?”


I thought I would share with you why this is so important to me and why I may be a little pushy on this subject.  Hopefully give you an understanding of where my passion comes from.


Each and everyone of us has our own reasons for wanting to do this.  For some its just simply to shed a few pounds.  You may not even be that convinced that you need a lifestyle change as much as you just want to get rid of the pounds and move on.  Still, for others you may have been told by your physician that you needed to make a change.  You may be committed to losing the weight, but still figure once you've lost it you'll be able to get back to normal.  There are certainly countless other reasons for undertaking this program.  For most of you at this point, to take part or not is still a choice.  Count it a blessing that it is still exactly that... a choice you can make.


Here's my inspiration:


I have been an on again off again runner and fitness enthusiast my whole adult life.  Through March of 2008 I had run 4 marathons and countless shorter distance races.  I had even competed in a bodybuilding competition in my late teens.  And yet, that didn't mean I was always in great or good or even fair health.  I certainly knew how to take care of myself.  I am after all a Certified Endurance Fitness Trainer and Personal Trainer.  And still, knowledge doesn't guarantee results, action does!


Its funny, if you asked most people who knew me they would tell you that I was active, I mean I was a marathoner you know!  What most people didn't realize was that I was the “Grand Poobah of Yo-Yo'ers.  No question that in spite of everything I knew; I ate the wrong stuff, drank too much and even smoked!  Great example of health, right?


Monday May 18th, will be an anniversary for me.  It will be exactly a year ago and 60 lbs heavier that in the middle of a 40 mile bike ride I had my heart attack.  Yes, at 45 years of age, my refusal to apply what I knew caught up with me.


You might at this point be thinking; “That could never happen to me!”  Guess what?  I thought the same thing.  To a person, everyone who knew me thought it should have happened to them not me.  I was after all the active guy.


My one concern in telling this story is that you might take away from it what some of my friends did.  If the healthy guy has a heart attack, then what's the point, I might as well have another beer and a cheeseburger!


The fact of the matter is, I only appeared to be healthy.  I am a big guy, frame-wise and so even with an extra 60 lbs of body fat, I didn't appear to be overweight.  I had that “Week-end Warrior”, “Guy” mentality that said I could eat what I wanted, when I wanted, drink what I wanted, when I wanted and then just workout once in a while and everything would be honky-dory.


As an example; I had almost a full year to train for my first marathon from the time I signed up until the time I had to run.  Guess how many times I ran during that year?  300?  200? 100?  50?  20?


How about none of the above!  I literally ran 10 times in the year leading up to my first marathon.  Everyone knew I was training for the marathon.  What they didn't know was that I would go home from work, put on my workout clothes, sit down and turn on the TV and never get out the door.  Pretty soon all I did was think about putting on the workout clothes and just go right to the food and TV routine.


Don't get the impression that if you are genuinely active, you are no better off than if you just say forget it, because I was not the stellar example of health everyone thought I was.


The fact remains, when I hear someone talk about how they are going to get active and healthy and then they come up with every excuse in the books as to why they don't, I know exactly what's going on in their brain at that moment.  I've heard, given, used and created pretty much every excuse you can imagine as to why tomorrow is a better day to start getting healthy than today.  You can't surprise me with one I haven't at least thought of at some point in time.


Truth is; you still have a choice and that may not be the best thing in the world.  I don't have a choice.


Actually, I do.  Live or die!


Which would you chose?  I've opted for living.  I've kind of grown accustomed to it!


You have lots of choices that I no longer have.  If you are a Weight Watchers member, you have a points system that pretty much allows you to eat anything on the menu as long as it falls within the allotted points.  I don't!  I am a Midwestern boy at heart.  Which means I do love food!  Food is now fuel for me.  The leaner and more pure it is the better and enough to keep me running in top condition is all I'm really interested in.  I have zero cravings anymore.  Why?  I want to live and after a year of very pure eating for fuel, I just don't' crave anymore.  I know by how I feel exactly what type of fuel I need and that's what I eat.  No more, no less!


You have the choice to be active or not.  I don't!  For the rest of my life, I have to constantly work to improve my cardiovascular endurance and cardiovascular strength.  Its not an option, its a must!


Fortunately for me, I find extreme joy in running!  And, now that I'm actually doing it on a regular basis, I'm enjoying it even more.


Don't get me wrong, I love my active lifestyle.  So much so that I'm training for my first ultra marathon next January of 50 miles.  Its just that getting to this point became non-optional.


So I hope that you can understand, that when I am pushy about getting you out to our training sessions its not for me.  Its that I would never wish what I went through on anyone... ever!


And when you throw out your excuses, I'm not being judgmental, but in the back of my mind I do hear myself throwing out the same excuses over a year ago.  Trust me if you haven't figured this out already, once you come up with one way to let yourself off the hook, it just gets easier and easier with every one.


No one who has been to our training sessions would walk away saying anything but how enjoyable walking with the group is.  I truly enjoy it myself.  I also enjoy the solitude that a long run by myself brings.


Please get active, while you have a choice.  I will do everything in my power to help make it something you enjoy now and for the rest of your life and yet it all begins with you!


Have an incredible day and go get active!

575 Views 1 Comments Permalink Tags: training, running, fitness, walking, inspiration, health, 5k, weight-watchers, tim-vanravenswaay, momentum-walk-it-challenge, santa-monica, focus, priority

May 8,2009

Posted by Tim Van May 8, 2009

Hard to believe, I've had a love/hate relationship with running for nearly thirty years now.


One thing I know to be true about running or any other form of exercise for that matter is; there will be plenty of days when its easy to get out and get moving.  The longer you are involved with running or jogging or walking or strength training or whatever other activity you choose the easier it becomes to consistently get out and do it.  In fact it becomes a regular and hopefully enjoyable part of your healthy active lifestyle.


The other thing that I know is, although there will likely be more good days than bad, there will be plenty of bad days.  And, its not the good days that define who you are.  Rather it is how you handle the bad days that build the real foundation for creating a healthy lifestyle.


It is in those moments when you really would rather not get out and train that you determine who you are, not just as an athlete but also as a human being.  Do you push forward and through or do you allow yourself to be derailed by every little obstacle real or imagined that comes along?


I had one of those days yesterday.  My training has been going quite well lately.  But yesterday, I really wasn't feeling it.  I procrastinated through most of the day before finally pushing myself out the door.


By the time I got out on the road it was pretty warm and I wasn't feeling too great to boot.  About halfway through my run I started getting stomach cramps and my legs had been aching almost from my first step.  Now I was faced with a decision.  I could stop running and walk home or I could keep running.  Walking would have certainly meant some relief for my aching legs and yet I found that as I slow to a walk for a couple of minutes my stomach cramps actually got worse.  The thought then occurred to me: If this was mile 35 of a 50 mile ultra marathon who would be there to help me through this?


The answer was simple.  The only person who could make me go on is me.  No amount of encouragement from anyone else could have made me run through the soreness.  If I was going to finish this run or finish an ultra marathon, it is up to me to dig deep inside of myself and find the strength to go  on.


And so I did push on.  This was not a particularly long run for me but it was perhaps one of the best 6 mile runs I've completed in a while.  Not the fastest or strongest performance, but great because when it came down to decision time, I made the right choice.  The fact that I chose to push on will carry with me throughout other areas of my life.


Today is going to be a much, much longer run, but something tells me its going to be one of those days where its easy to get myself out and moving.  After all, I've already proven to myself that I have what it takes when things get tough.


What do you do in a similar situation?  Do you persevere or do you fold?  The choice is yours and making the right one can take you to a totally different level!


Have an awesome day and go get active!

533 Views 0 Comments Permalink Tags: training, running, fitness, walking, inspiration, health, 5k, weight-watchers, momentum-walk-it-challenge, santa-monica, focus, priority

May 7,2009

Posted by Tim Van May 7, 2009

You all have really inspired me and as a result my own training has gone to a whole new level!  Very cool!


I am actually doing twice a day training sessions right now.  I'll be up and running before most people are even awake doing a long run of somewhere in the neighborhood of two hours.  Then at the end of the day, maybe 6 or 7 o'clock its time for an easy 5k along the beach where we do are training on Saturdays.


The evening runs are incredible along the ocean.  Refreshing and inspiring!


You should have been receiving your daily training emails from and I hope you're doing your best to at least get those short training walks in as you can each day.  Remember, the short walks all add up and most times its not the one  big walk that makes the difference, its all of the little ones.


Living an active lifestyle is not about getting all of your activity in  one day and then you're done.  Its about doing something extra every day.  That's when you will really begin to notice the rewards of a healthy lifestyle!


Have a great day!


Go Get Active!

541 Views 2 Comments Permalink Tags: running, fitness, walking, inspiration, health, 5k, weight-watchers, momentum-walk-it-challenge, santa-monica

May 6, 2009

Posted by Tim Van May 6, 2009

OK, so I missed a couple of days of blog posts, but I'm back now!


First of all congratulations Frida on a great day of working out and moving towards your goals.  Keep it up, that's fantastic!


I hope everyone is feeling better as I know that several of you were feeling a little under the weather last weekend.


Now it's time to get moving.  Just get out today and move a little if you can.  Maybe only 15 minutes.  Remember, every day's not going to be a marathon.  But they all add up too a healthier you!


Now get out there and get active!

525 Views 2 Comments Permalink Tags: training, fitness, walking, inspiration, health, 5k, time, weight-watchers, momentum-walk-it-challenge, santa-monica, focus

May1, 2009

Posted by Tim Van May 1, 2009

Happy May Day!  Wow, where has the year gone?  Memorial Day and summer are right around the corner.  Can you believe it?


And... the Culver City 5k is also looming in the not so distant future!  If you haven't been taking this too seriously to this point, now is the time!


I, no matter how inspirational or motivational or just plain pushy, I might be, can not make you get active and get healthy.  That has to come from you!


It comes from the inside.  It comes from you finally, once and for all deciding that the way you are right now is not who you are and you won't except anything less than who you want to be anymore!


If you really want this, it will become a priority.  If you really want to make a change, you'll stop accepting excuses from yourself and start demanding results.


No matter what anyone has ever told you... being active and healthy is not EASY!  It is however, simple!


If you're sick and tired of being sick and tired, if you're disgusted by what you see when you look in the mirror, if you hate the way your clothes fit, if you feel disappointed in yourself when you get tired just walking to the mailbox, if you want more energy, if you just plain want to feel better about yourself... it's time for a change!


I have a saying:  "Sometimes the only difference between a good run and a bad run... is your front door!"


More simply put; your life won't change until you get out and do something... anything.  Take a step or two or a hundred or a thousand towards changing your health.  Do it today!


Let me ask one quick question;


If what you wanted for your life 5 years ago is still a dream... where will you be five years from now?


Have an awesome day and get out and get active!


See you tomorrow!

434 Views 4 Comments Permalink Tags: running, fitness, walking, 5k, weight-watchers, momentum-walk-it-challenge, santa-monica, priority

April 30, 2009

Posted by Tim Van Apr 30, 2009

Eight weeks to the Culver City 5k.  Whoo Hooo!  Here we go!


Time to get busy with our training plan.


Have a great day!

427 Views 0 Comments Permalink Tags: training, fitness, walking, 5k, weight-watchers, momentum-walk-it-challenge, santa-monica

April 29, 2009

Posted by Tim Van Apr 29, 2009

Good Morning!


Sorry this post is a little later than usual.  I am working on a new e-book; em-Powered by Fitness and kind of lost track of time.


I hear a lot of folks say that the reason they don't get out and get active is they don't have enough time.  Funny thing is, that's the one thing we all have the same amount of.  We all have the same 24 hours each and every day... no more, no less!


So why do some of us consistently make time for our health while others seem only to have enough time to complain about not being able to be active?


Now before you get all offended and start telling me about how I don't know anything about your life and what you already have to do each and every day and how there's just no way you could possibly find even 30 minutes more to do some form of exercise... I understand.


You are correct.  I don't know everything about what goes on in your life.  I do know about my life and millions of other people who have made being active and healthy a priority in their lives.  I know that sometimes it means getting up an hour earlier or staying up an hour later or skipping that favorite TV show or at least watching it while walking on the treadmill.


What I know, (and this is not an opinion, its based on tons of research on human behavior), is if you aren't getting some form of active exercise at least five days a week, its because its not a big enough priority in your life.


And I repeat myself... I know you have a lot going on in your life and adding just one more thing, just one more activity, would put you over the edge and yet at some point, if you don't make your health a priority you will have to start scratching other items off your daily list of things to do as well because quite frankly... you won't be able to do them.



Trust me when I say that your health will not allow you to ignore it forever!  Its possible you know this first-hand and that's why you're here looking for answers, looking for motivation, seeking support.  I am a living testament to that fact!  When I had a heart attack just less than a year ago, my body finally said; enough is enough!  It finally said; no more pretending to be active and healthy, no more working out once or twice a week and pretending you're serious about your health.


You don't have to wait until you're given an ultimatum by your body to get moving.  You just have to move it up on the list of priorities.  It doesn't even have to be #1.  Its got to be important though!




Because in life, you get what you focus on!


If you focus on not having enough time, guess what you'll get?  Not enough time.  If you focus on everyday doing something healthy, guess what you'll have time for?  If you focus on how great it feels to go for a walk or a jog or a run, guess what you'll get more of?


If you simply tell yourself that you always find time for the things in your life that are a priority to you (like your health), then that's what you'll find time for.  It really is that simple.


Do this now while its still a choice!


Go get active!

507 Views 2 Comments Permalink Tags: training, running, fitness, walking, inspiration, health, 5k, time, weight-watchers, momentum-walk-it-challenge, santa-monica, focus, priority

April 28, 2009

Posted by Tim Van Apr 28, 2009

This is a repost from my other blog, which originally appeared in February.  I felt it was appropriate.  Whether it is weather or work or family obligations or a TV show or whatever; what is it you're using as your excuses not to get active?


From Feb. 6,2009


Never Ever Stop!

Its raining outside right now. I know you may be thinking "Big Deal", its snowing here! We don't get a lot of rain in Southern California. For me it is an incredibly refreshing thing. I actually plan my runs so that I can get out and get wet.


It seems to me though that I hear lots of folks talking about how the weather gets in the way of their training.


If you'll stop training because of the weather, you'll probably stop for any other little reason you can come up with.


The question really is... how bad do you want it? If you don't find a way to get out and train, you're not really that committed to it! Whatever it is that makes you move is not as strong as whatever it is that's keeping you from getting out there. And that, is a problem!


Now before you go and get all offended because I said you weren't committed and I don't even know your circumstances, remember one thing...


This is my blog and its about the mindset behind getting extreme performance out of yourself. You don't have to agree with everything I say and you don't have to read if you are offended. All I'm really saying is that if you want to be healthy and vital, set a new P.R., complete a triathlon, run a marathon, walk around the block without losing your breathe... whatever it is you want you have got to go for it rain or shine.


If you shy away from training when the weather isn't perfect, I challenge you to get out in the rain or the snow. You may find that the variety is just what you needed to spice things up and at the very least, you will be proud of yourself for never ever stopping when others do.


That's all! My rant is over for now!


Now get out there and do something!


Let's get rolling here!

576 Views 2 Comments Permalink Tags: training, running, walking, inspiration, 5k, weight-watchers, momentum-walk-it-challenge, santa-monica

April 27, 2009

Posted by Tim Van Apr 27, 2009

A great conversation during our Saturday training session about taking time for yourself.  Most of us have obligations to others; kids, spouses, family, friends, co-workers, employers, etc.  Many of us put their needs in front of ours.  Its easy to feel guilty for taking even 30 minutes to exercise.


Let me ask you this... If you aren't healthy, how much help will you be to the ones you love?


Many people look at the time they spend training, whether it be; walking, jogging, running or strength training, as time they are taking away from the other people in their lives.  The truth is, this small investment of time you make in your health by being active will allow you to be a better contributor in the other areas of your life. 


Not to mention the fact that you will be setting an example for those around you by making a commitment to be healthy and taking care of yourself.


Just a thought!


Have an awesome day!

450 Views 1 Comments Permalink Tags: training, walking, inspiration, 5k, weight-watchers, momentum-walk-it-challenge, santa-monica

April 26, 2009

Posted by Tim Van Apr 26, 2009

Good morning all!  Another beautiful day in Southern California.  Let's all get out there and get active!


It was great to see all of you yesterday on our training day at the beach.  As we discussed, I have attached the stretching pdf for your reference.


Keep up the great work.  You all Rock!

505 Views 0 Comments Permalink Tags: training, walking, inspiration, 5k, weight-watchers, momentum-walk-it-challenge, santa-monica
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Tim Van

Tim Van

Member since: Jul 26, 2007

Team blog for the Momentum Walk-It Challenge sponsored by Weight Watchers.

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