Please head over to Eat Love and Train to get the latest, this page is no longer maintained! Thank you!

Sunday, March 30, 2008

On self renewal - “The Turn of the Tide”

Sometimes you end up doing two things simultaneously that just fit together perfectly. I was listening to Norah Jones and at the same time I was reading the story below, it's a classic worth passing on!

“The Turn of the Tide” by Arthur Gordon

Arthur Gordon tells of a time in his life when he began to feel that everything was stale and flat. His enthusiasm had all but disappeared; his writing efforts were fruitless, and the situation was getting worse day by day.

Finally, he decided to get help from a medical doctor. Observing nothing physically wrong, the doctor asked him if he would be able to follow his instructions for one day. When Gordon replied that he could, the doctor told him to spend the following day in a place where he was the happiest as a child. He could take food, but he was not to talk to anyone or to read or write or listen to the radio. He then wrote out four prescriptions and told him to open one at nine, twelve, three, and six o’clock.

“Are you serious?” Gordon asked him.

“You won’t think I’m joking when you get my bill!” was the reply.

So the next morning, Gordon went to the beach. As he opened the first prescription, he read, “Listen carefully.” He thought the doctor was insane! How could he listen for three hours? Nevertheless, he had agreed to follow the doctor’s order, so he listened. He heard the usual sounds of the sea and the birds. After a while, he could hear the other sounds that weren’t so apparent at first. As he listened, he began to think of lessons the sea had taught him as a child—patience, respect, and an awareness of the interdependence of things. He began to listen to the sounds—and the silence—and to feel a growing peace deep within.

At noon, he opened the second slip of paper and read, “Try reaching back.” “Reaching back to what?” he wondered. Perhaps to childhood, perhaps to memories of joy. He tried to remember them with exactness, and in remembering, he found a growing warmth inside.

At three o’clock, he opened the third piece of paper. Until now, the prescriptions had been easy to take, but this one was different; it said, “Examine your motives.” At first he was defensive. He thought about what he wanted—success, security, recognition—and he justified them all. Yet then the thought occurred to him that those motives weren’t good enough. That perhaps therein was the answer to his stagnant situation. He considered his motives deeply and thought about past happiness, and at last, the answer came to him. In a flash of certainty, he wrote, “I saw that if one’s motives are wrong, nothing can be right. It makes no difference whether you are a mail carrier, a hairdresser, an insurance salesperson, a home-maker—whatever. As long as you feel you are serving others, you do the job well. When you are concerned only with helping yourself, you do it less well—a law as unrelenting as gravity.”

When six o’clock came, the fourth prescription didn’t take long to fill. “Write your worries on the sand,” it said. He knelt and wrote several words with a piece of broken shell; then he turned and walked away. He didn’t look back: he knew the tide would come in!

If you need to, take a day like that. If you don't have time to, make time, life is short.

Friday, March 28, 2008

A thought to start your day

Goethe taught, "Treat a man as he is and he will remain as he is. Treat a man as he can and should be and he will become as he can and should be."
As personal trainers and coaches, we work as problem solvers, so we tend to classify people. We live our professional lives very much like we live our social lives, we have our hidden fears, prejudices, ways to feel secure. We dissect, piece things up, find solutions and look for results. We are goal driven.
Today, take a minute a think what drives each person that you meet. How can you treat them as responsible, growing, learning and searching individuals, barring all prejudices and personal judgment. Look for their inner fire and don't put it out by being a problem solver.

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Shaking things up!

I was just writing some shake recipes for a client and I though, why not publish them here!
To me, food is just one more way to experience the world, very much like music. Every now and then you hear a new song and you play it every day until it gets old. These shakes have had the exact same effect on me, that's why they are my favorites!

All you need is a blender and 30 seconds :)

Coffee Delight
1/2 cup cold coffee
½ cup milk or 1 scoop vanilla protein powder
½ pear
1 tbsp walnuts
dash of cinnamon

Green tea rise and shine
1 cup strong green tea - cold
4 cubes of ice
1 scoop protein powder
1/2 apple

Berry Burst
1 cup yogurt
1 dash vanilla extract
1 tsp sweetener (Stevia)
½ cup frozen berries
1/3 cup ricotta cheese

Mint lemon shake
1 cup yogurt
Zest of 1/3 lemon
1 tbsp mint leaves
½ cup ricotta or cottage cheese
1 tsp Stevia

Strawberry and protein bar shake
1/2 protein bar (chocolate)
1 cup strawberries
1 cup yogurt

Enjoy shaking things up :)

Wednesday, March 26, 2008


I am both happy and touched by the new initiative that John Berardi and the PN team have started. The least I can do, is spread the word!

Yesterday I ate 7 meals and 4,500 calories.

Yet millions of people in the US and Canada didn't eat one.

What a contrast!

And trust me, the irony isn't lost on this big eater.

Most people think of hunger as something that only affects
remote areas of the world, or the homeless you see living on
the streets.

Call me a slow learner, but I recently realized that this
is FAR from the truth.

Recently, I learned that tons (millions, in fact) of
everyday people, especially children, single parents, and
the elderly, go hungry each day right here in our own states
and provinces.

The amazing thing is that these children are kids we know,
these parents include some we hang out with, and these
elderly are your peers, your parent's peers, and your
grandparent's peers.

Sure, they hide it well. But that doesn't make them any
less hungry.

Learning all this, and being touched personally by hunger,
inspired me to take action.

As a result, for the last year, the entire Precision
Nutrition team and I have spent a lot of time thinking about
how we can help bridge "the gap."

What gap?

>>The gap between those who buy and eat the best
>>foods . . .

>>. . . and those who can barely afford to buy any
>>food at all.

In the end, we came up with something we're very proud of:

>>The Healthy Food Bank.

And although we've been working hard behind the scenes for
nearly a year on this project, this month we're officially
spreading the word.

So, what's the Healthy Food Bank?

>>The Healthy Food Bank is a registered charity that
>>purchases nutritious staples - good food - for local
>>food banks and shelters around North America.

And today, I'd like to send you to our new web site:

In doing so, we'd like you to know about the new project
and we'd also like to give you access to some food articles
we think you'll find very interesting.

Further, we'd like to announce something special.

>>For the next 45 days, if you purchase a copy of our
>>highly acclaimed Gourmet Nutrition cookbook, 10% of
>>the sale will go directly to the Healthy Food Bank.

What this means is that by boosting the health quotient of
your own food, you'll also be helping to boost the health
quotient of the kids, the single parents and the elderly in
your own city who can't afford to eat tonight.

Hey, I hate clichés, but if there ever was such as thing as
a "win-win," this is it.

So pick up a copy of Gourmet Nutrition today, and let's help
do some good for a lot of people in need.

Sunday, March 23, 2008

What to do with a whole salmon?

Why eat salmon? For me, it combines almost everything I need out of a meal: high quality protein, sufficient fats (hopefully most of the Omega 3 stay after cooking), high satiety and less fishy taste than most other fish. Cooking it is clean and easy and leaves your kitchen smelling good, unlike other types of fish.

It seems like a waste to just bake a whole salmon. First, I don't see 6 lbs of meat go in one day, because we are a one fish eater household, second, there is something to steamed salmon fillets that I just love. So there I had it in front of me, shiny, cold and ready to go.

I found a great link that shows how to cut salmon fillets.
I took it a step further, and cut a couple of cutlets, too. Once you get to the thickest part of the fish, you can cut beautiful cutlets, and save the rest for fillets.

What I had left in the end was 4 cutlets, 6 fillets, two smaller fillets from around the head and the spine, tail and head. The last three are turning to soup in a few hours and all the rest went in ziplocks to be frozen for easy cooking during the week.

I usually cook all my meals the night before, so here are two simple steamed one person salmon recipes:

Ginger salmon

Put the fillet in steamer, cover and steam for 12-15 minutes. You can do this directly with frozen fillets, and it takes a few minutes longer. While the fish is steaming, prepare the sauce:

1/2 cup pineapple (chopped up)
2 tbsp fresh ginger (chopped up)
2 tbsp coconut milk
1 tbsp butter (or ghi)

Melt the butter and quickly stir in the pineapple and ginger. Simmer with the coconut milk for 2-3 minutes on medium heat, occasionally stirring.

Rosemary salmon

Put the fillet in steamer and cover with fresh or dried rosemary leaves on top and bottom. Steam for 7 minutes. Open, cover with 2 tbsp of sour cream, sprinkle some black pepper on top and cover again to cook for another 5-7 minutes.

I intend to cook my mother's fish soup later, that includes carrots, peeled tomatoes, onions and celery, depending on the outcome, I will be posting the recipe here later :)

Sunday, March 16, 2008

Тony Robbins tells Rocky story

"The greatest revenge is massive success"

А story about who you are, and about how you persevere is more important than what anybody says to you. I love it. It's also a story about how you should never sell your dog, unless it ends up with a movie part.

Omega 3 fats fight weight gain

We have to thank mice, again. Researchers in Japan, fed overweight mice a diet that was 30% fat. One group of mice received 8% of that in the form of fish oil. 5 months later, the mice that were given fish oil had significantly reduced weight gain than the poor fellas that were given no fish oil.
The cool thing is that the fish oil had an effect on lipid metabolism genes, as well as lipid metabolism related enzymes. The fish oil group also had higher levels of fatty acid ß-oxidation. Even though this study was looking at one of the mechanisms in which fish oil could lower body fat, namely intestinal lipid metabolism, it's another piece to the puzzle that will let us appreciate the many ways fish oil reduces fat levels.

abstract here

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Lyle McDonald Speaks

When I first got acquainted with Lyle's work, I was avidly interested in anything low carb, figuring whether PSMF was better than CKD or TKD, going crazy over what went wrong with my calculations, asking why my body fat was not rapidly approaching the zero mark. Funny now that I think back, since human physiology is a lot more complicated than that and there is a lot more to the "thoughts in and food in" side of the equation. I was over at the bodyrecomposition forums, reading, soaking in the information and becoming very critical of notions that were very black and white before I heard Lyle speak about them.
I am glad Lyle has a blog now, where I can get more critical insight into topics that move me. He makes it a light read, and certainly one that you cannot regard as blogging for blogging's sake.

My favorite so far:
How many carbohydrates do you need?

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

A Quick Start to the end of a gym membership

thought provoked by the Life Fitness Academy Training and great Life Fitness trainer Gavin Aquilina

Treadmills - if you look at the reports, the program that most members choose would be Quick Start. Time they spend on the treadmill - 20 min. What trainers told them - "Get on the treadmill and do 20 minutes of cardio. See you later".
Since I own a PT studio, I've never thought of this non exact prescription as being detrimental membership retention. First, we have no treadmills (there is a park across from us and we invested in learning all the fun tracks instead). Second, we don't lose members, so I never have to think about what cardio has to do with it.

The quick start option could be chosen by one of two people: one who memorizes and plans out their workouts (like I do, well, my coach does), or someone who has no specific idea about what time, resistance, incline, speed, etc, they are going to use. If you don't know those variables, you are screwed for two reasons: first, you work without a goal, that means pretty soon you'll be bored out of your mind and see your results through a "crooked macaroon" (the Bulgarian way to say "never"). Second, you have no way of knowing whether you've improved, and without improvement, no one would stay in the gym anyways.

So, how do you get out of this? Give specific instructions to the person involved in aerobic training. Assess their needs, their level. Write them a program, make it fun, and make them follow it. Chances are, if you have planned a nice 4 week progression, they will be excited to get to the next phase. And in the next phase, they will get an even greater fun out of more advanced protocols, like intervals, fartlek, etc.

Most cardio machines nowadays offer a myriad of programs, you can sure use those, but make sure you plan progressions in intensity and duration during the different phases, this way you can focus on intensity this month and on duration next month, one building on the other, to make sure your client is in better shape at the end of the program. Have them on a good nutrition program, and they will also see considerable fat loss. A client who is getting fitter, seeing results in the mirror, and enjoying a goal oriented workout plan, is most likely going to stay a member.

The next time you see someone use the quick start program, make sure they are doing it for a reason, that they have a goal in mind, if they don't, it is your calling to give them one. If you are someone who has hired a trainer and all they tell you is : " give me 20 minutes on the treadmill", it's time to look for a new one.