We’re still hoping to run our Young Athlete Multi-Sport Conditioning Camp again this summer. Unfortunately, getting the downtown location ready took up a lot of our energies and we haven’t done a good job of promoting the Conditioning Camp. We are pushing the start of the camp back to mid July in hopes that we can get the word out this week and get enough participants to run the program!
The Young Athlete Multi-Sport Conditioning Camp is an athletic development program for teenagers. We have two one hour sessions every week: Tuesdays and Thursdays at 10am. The athletes work to develop and improve speed, agility, quickness, strength, conditioning, coordination, stability, team play, cooperation, and leadership skills.
It is important for youths to develop confidence and competence in as many different movement patterns and skills as possible. This “physical literacy” enables them to participate in a huge variety of sports and physical activities and develops the foundation for active living throughout their entire lives.
For youths that have already begun to specialize, practicing different movement patterns and skills helps to decrease the risk of overuse injuries and provides a much needed physical and mental break from their primary sport.
We will run the camp for 8 weeks between July 11 and August 31. That will make 16 sessions. You can choose to register for all 16, or you can register for 12 or 14 – you choose which of the sessions to attend.
Call or visit the gym to register!
16 sessions – $140
14 sessions – $130
12 sessions – $120
Buys Home Farm will be running its farm share veggie delivery service again this summer.
Starting in the first week of July and continuing for 13 weeks, they will deliver bins full of farm fresh veggies to the city every week. You just show up with your empty bin and exchange it for one full of fresh vegetables.
A small bin can be expected to feed two people and costs $330 for the 13 weeks. A large bin is more suitable for four people and costs $530. A refundable $20 bin deposit applies to both sizes.
The deliveries are made to different parts of the city, but one of their drop off points is in the parking lot behind our St. Boniface location! Sign up for your weekly fresh vegetable delivery by emailing email@example.com.
We are bringing in two changes to how we run classes this June.
First, we are changing the way we charge for classes. We are getting rid of the monthly block registration system. Members will now have the option of paying $22/month for unlimited classes or $50 for a 10 class pass (that doesn’t expire). Both these options will allow you to attend classes at both the St. Boniface and Downtown locations while we experiment with dual facility access for the first few months that the downtown facility is open. See the class fee breakdown here.
Second, we are going to try to keep more summer class programming than we have in the past. With the lovely spring weather that we’ve been getting lately our classes are transitioning into summer mode. We’re all spending a little more time outside and a little less time in the gym. Normally we cut back on our class schedule in the summer because attendance is both reduced and patchy. This year, because we have WellnessLiving up and running, we are going to try something else!
Rather than cancelling classes outright, we are going to use WellnessLiving to try keep more classes going. We are asking you to pre-register for classes through WellnessLiving – either on the website or with the WellnessLiving Achieve app (available on Apple and Android). We will check the attendance on the day of the class and if we have a minimum threshold of participants registered, the class will run as usual. If less than three people register, we will cancel the class that day.
If you are registered for a class that gets cancelled, WellnessLiving will send you a message letting you know the class isn’t running. Let us know if you’re having a hard time figuring out WellnessLiving and we will help you make sense of it. You can also call the gym and we will book you into classes on our end.
Enjoy the weather this spring/summer and hopefully a few more classes!
We’re excited to run the Multi-Sport Conditioning Camp for Young Athletes again this year!
The program is designed for teenagers and will run on Tuesday and Thursday mornings (at 9 and/or 10 o’clock) during July and August. We will work on developing speed, agility, quickness, strength, conditioning, coordination, stability, team play, cooperation, and leadership.
It is important for youths to develop confidence and competence in as many different movement patterns and skills as possible. A larger movement and skill repertoire enables youths to participate in a larger variety of sports and activities and develops the foundation for active living throughout their entire lives. For youths that have already begun to specialize, practicing different movement patterns and skills helps to decrease the risk of overuse injuries and provides a much needed physical and mental break from their primary sport.
There are 9 full weeks in July and August this year so we will run 18 sessions. You can choose to register for 14, 16, or all 18 sessions over those 9 weeks.
Call or visit the gym to register!
14 sessions – $145
16 sessions – $160
18 sessions – $175
If you haven’t heard yet, MORFIT is expanding! We are taking over the space formerly occupied by Urban Wellness in Cityplace in downtown Winnipeg.
MORFIT Downtown will be a full service fitness centre offering the same services as our St. Boniface location: Memberships, classes, personal and small group training, physical therapy, and nutrition services.
While we’ve been waiting to get our hands on the space, we’ve been quite busy with all kinds of planning. We’re playing around with floor plans to see how we can maximize the space to get a little more out of it. We have to decide where to put the sled turf down, where to stick enough spin bikes to run a class, where to set up the rig, what equipment to keep/add, and how to make everything fit comfortably so the gym has a nice flow and welcoming layout. Oh yeah, and we need to get the word out that we’re coming to Cityplace!
We’re also figuring out what to do behind the scenes with our membership software and website(s?), finalizing membership rates, and looking for quality staff and class instructors to add to the MORFIT Team.
We’ll be getting our hands on the space this week and will have a few things to do before we open including painting, rejigging the power and flooring to accommodate the new layout, setting up all the equipment, and making a few other changes.. When that’s done we’ll open the doors!
We’re planning on having everything ready to go for June. We’ll keep you posted as we get closer and things come together!
At MORFIT we try to help our clients develop positive relationships with food. This can take a bit of work – mainly because as media consuming humans, we are constantly bombarded with what seems like continually changing evidence about the “healthiness” and quality of food. This information is frequently presented out of context in order to create a more attractive headline, soundbite, or clickable item. Eggs are bad! Eggs are good! Fat is bad! Fat is good! Sugar is evil! Stay tuned to find out if/when sugar will be vindicated…
Take this video, for example. It tells you when and why to eat or not eat certain foods. Eat a banana at lunch because it will strengthen your immune system and improve your skin. Don’t eat a banana at dinner because it will lead to mucus formation and disturb digestion. Eat nuts at lunch because it lowers your risk of [high] blood pressure. Don’t eat nuts at dinner because it will lead to weight gain. Thinking critically, this leaves many questions on the table: Do these positive and negative effects happen at any of time of day or just at lunch and supper? What would happen if you had a banana at breakfast? Why would mucus formation and disturbed digestion after lunch be any more desirable than after dinner? Why does eating nuts at dinner but not at lunch lead to weight gain?
We could posit that mucus formation and disturbed digestion could be worse after dinner because they reduce your ability to get quality sleep. Hopefully these effects don’t affect your ability to do your job after lunch. Perhaps there is data to show that people who eat nuts at dinner tend to eat more during the day than people who eat nuts at breakfast or lunch, but if this data exists we are not presented with it.
All the foods in the video (bananas, apples, yoghurt, tomatoes, nuts, and oranges) are foods we would typically consider to be foods that could be eaten as part of a balanced diet while pursuing goals related to improved health and body composition – aka “good” foods (more on “good” foods later). For some people, including more whole foods like the ones in the video is a big step forward, regardless of what meal they are eaten at. Unfortunately, a video like this might make people hesitate about changing their eating behaviours. “I was going to have yoghurt for breakfast, but I’ve heard yoghurt at breakfast is bad because it makes my stomach very acidic. I will stick to drive-through breakfast instead.” “I was going to pack an apple for a snack today instead of chips, but I’ve heard apples are hard to digest and I didn’t want to ruin my afternoon so I stuck with chips.”
We can give the video producers the benefit of the doubt and say there may be something to the assertions in the video, but is this the type of information we should be sharing with the average person trying to improve their eating behaviours? Probably not. It is often more productive to start with big picture ideas and explore the finer details over time as interest and need increase. We often get caught in the minutia of eating behaviours when we should be looking at the big picture.
So if we’re starting with the big picture, where do we begin?
If we’re looking at food in the context of health and weight management, the most influential factor is the amount of food we eat*. If we consistently eat more than we need, we can typically expect to gain weight. If we consistently eat less than we need, we can typically expect to lose weight. This is a slight simplification, but it tends to hold true most of the time for most people.
*NOTE: We are excluding the effects of physical activity, exercise, stress, NEAT, metabolic rate, etc to keep the conversation on our relationship with food. How we relate food and exercise, how these other factors can help with health and weight management, and determining how much/what kind of food to eat are subjects for other blog posts!
The next piece to look at with respect to health and weight management is food quality. Is the food we’re eating providing us with the nutrients we need to be healthy? Sometimes efforts to manage our weight can be thwarted by nutrient deficiencies, regardless of whether we maintain a caloric deficit or surplus. Getting adequate nutrition from our diet is normally taken care of when the majority of our diet consists of a variety of nutrient dense, whole foods.
After we’ve figured out how much total food to eat and how to eat this quantity of food in a way that gives us the nutrition we need to function well as humans, we can start looking at more detailed aspects of eating. These more detailed aspects of eating include things like how many meals to eat per day, what times to eat them, whether bananas are better at breakfast or dinner, and whether we need any kinds of nutritional supplements.
Looking at the more detailed aspects of nutrition before we’ve found a way to consistently eat an appropriate amount of food and get the nutrients we need can be detrimental to developing sustainable, health promoting eating behaviours. If we start with fine details instead of big picture considerations, we put the cart before the horse. We’ll get more into this big picture idea of finding out how much to eat in another post.
We should also consider eating in the context of our happiness.
This can be related to weight management, but doesn’t have to be. Our eating behaviours, in addition to supporting our health and allowing us to manage our weight, should also contribute to – or at least not detract from – our happiness. It is in our interest to develop a positive relationship with food. The more positively we can relate to food, the more likely we are to adhere to eating behaviours that support our health, fitness, and body composition goals in the long term.
Does this mean we should be bff’s with our food? Well, maybe, but it doesn’t have to get weird. It means we should have positive or neutral associations with food rather than negative associations. This means not being scared to eat foods because of their sugar/calorie/fat/protein/carb/etc content and not feeling guilty for eating something (unless you are stealing your coworker’s lunch) or for having a drink. Foods are neither inherently good nor inherently bad and should not be labeled as such; you can have too much or too little of almost anything. Remember that when pursuing a health or body composition goal, it is the quantity and quality of foods eaten over the course of time that is most important, not whether you had a cheeseburger or a butter tart on the weekend.
We got a little bit of heat for having a birthday cake in the gym on Saturday (thanks for making us a cake, Melisa!). How could we, a gym, have bad food like cake on hand! Are we trying to torture our members by waving cake in their faces while they’re running on the treadmill?
Firstly, cake is not inherently bad. It is certainly a calorically dense and nutrient poor food that when consumed in large enough quantities can put the eater in a positive energy balance, increasing the likelihood of weight gain, or can displace other foods from the eater’s diet, decreasing their likelihood of meeting their nutritional needs. It is true that the more cake you eat, the more difficult it becomes to control your body composition and/or achieve adequate nutrient intake for health. However, a piece of cake here and there can easily be accounted for in the scheme of a person’s weekly caloric/nutrient intake in a way that still lends itself to weight management and metabolic health.
Secondly, once we’ve accepted that cake is not inherently bad and can be included in a healthy diet, having cake in our workout space doesn’t live up to the definition of torture. As our relationship to food becomes more positive, we start to understand how quantities of different foods can be manipulated to ensure healthy nutrition and support body composition goals. We also start to realize that a single piece of cake (or handful of broccoli) will not make or break our weekly nutrition.
So how do we develop a positive relationship with food? Here are a few strategies:
- Recognize that in the food industry it is someone’s job to make food more palatable, eatable, and sellable so that food companies can earn profit. Food products and commercials are engineered to make you over-consume. This is accomplished through manipulating salt, sugar, and fat content; food consistency; calorie density; emotion; food association memories; and many other factors. If you’re interested in learning more, check out the book Salt Sugar Fat by Michael Moss, reviewed here and here.
- Discover your food triggers. Sometimes we eat due to stress, social pressure, or habit. If you’re trying to decrease the total amount of food you eat or change the quality of the food you eat, pay attention to the environment in which you eat. Do you eat more or particular types of food when you’re stressed, hang out with friends, or watch tv? If you notice a pattern, you can start making more informed choices.
- Having difficulty saying no? Replace “I can’t” with “I don’t”. Saying “I can’t” implies a restriction. It undermines your sense of power and personal agency vis-à-vis your eating behaviour and creates a negative relationship with a food or eating behaviour. “I don’t” implies a choice and empowers you. It’s an affirmation of your determination and willpower. Shifting from “I can’t” to “I don’t” is a shift to a positive, empowered mindset that you can use to your advantage in developing sustainable, healthy eating behaviours.
Halloween is coming up and that means candy and Christmas decorations are filling up the displays in all the stores.
So what do you do about all this candy if you have a fat loss or physique goal? You have a choice! Read on for some brain candy that will help you make an informed decision about what to do about all that candy.
1) You could abstain from candy altogether.
This might work for some of you. If you tend to do better with either/or, all-or-nothing decisions, then choosing to eat no candy might be better for you than choosing to eat all of the candy.
The Pros: -Not eating any candy means avoiding extra calories from low nutrient food that don’t contribute to your nutritional needs and don’t help you attain or maintain a leaner physique.
The Cons: -Avoiding all candy creates a good food vs bad food dichotomy that causes feelings of guilt, shame, or failure when you eat “bad” food or if you break down and have a bit of candy after all. This is a false dichotomy: foods aren’t inherently good or bad. No single food is going to cause you to become more or less healthy. It is your overall, long term food choices that impact your health and body composition.
2) You could eat some candy. As they say, “everything in moderation-including Halloween candy.”
The Pros: -You can eat candy. Aside from enjoying the eating of your favourite candy, you also get to participate in the social customs and events in which eating Halloween candy occurs.
-You avoid the good vs bad food dichotomy that often leads to feelings of guilt, shame, or failure after eating foods labeled as “bad.” Eating some candy can fit into a healthy eating style where you eat mainly whole, unprocessed, nutritious food and leave some space for processed, refined, or low nutrient foods.
The Cons: -If you can’t stick to moderation you run the risk of eating more candy than you planned. Depending on how much you overdo it, this may temporarily slow, halt, or reverse your fat loss progress.
3) You could eat ALL the candy.
The Pros: -You’re likely going to really enjoy it while you go nuts over Halloween candy!
The Cons: -You might feel sluggish if you come down off your sugar high. You might also feel sluggish if your rampant candy consumption causes you to skip a meal or two or replace your normal healthy snacks with candy. If your body isn’t getting the nutrition it needs, it will not perform as well.
-The extra calories will most likely slow, halt, or reverse your fat loss progress while you’re binging.
But can’t I just work out more?
If you have the room in your programming to work out more frequently or more intensely, you could try to offset your increased caloric intake with more exercise. Extra exercise can make a small dent in your candy calories, but probably won’t offset it all. Have a peek at how many calories are in a handful of Halloween candy or a small Halloween bag of chips. Now take a peek at how long you would have to work for to burn that same amount of calories. Spoiler alert: It is a lot easier to eat Halloween calories than it is to burn them off.
So am I doomed?
If you have been the same weight or body composition for a while i.e. a few months to years, a small amount of candy will probably only cause a slight blip in your body fat level. This is because your body is resistant to change. A short duration increase in calorie consumption will not be enough to cause a lasting change in body composition, just like a short duration increase in exercise or food quality won’t cause a lasting change in body composition.
This is called Set Point Theory – your body wants to remain the same and will make adjustments to compensate for acute increases and decreases in physical activity or caloric intake in order to maintain its current state. Your body is pretty good at resisting change in the short term, but if you maintain your exercise and eating habits over the long term, your body will allow itself to change (towards either higher or lower levels of fitness, lean body mass, or fat).
It takes a consistent stimulus to overcome the body’s set point and change body composition. This is why most people don’t start dropping fat immediately when they start exercising and eating well. Once you have attained and maintained a new body composition for a while, your body will adopt it as its new set point and the same rules for making body composition changes apply. How long it takes will vary from person to person. The longer you were at your previous set point, the longer it will take for your body to adopt a new one.
This is why it is important to take the long view to health and fitness instead of chasing fads, trends, and rapid weight loss protocols. Practicing sustainable nutrition habits and exercising with progressive overload will effect lasting body composition changes. Quick fixes typically don’t last long enough to move your body’s set point. You can still have fun experimenting with fads and trends, just don’t expect them to give you long term results.
If you want to eat some candy this Halloween, eat some candy! There is room in most people’s diets for a little bit of candy if the rest of their diet picture is sound i.e. they’re eating mostly whole, nutrient dense, unprocessed foods and consuming the right amount of calories to support their body composition goals. Understand that eating a lot of candy in addition to your regular diet will probably slow or stop your fat loss and might even cause fat gain, but eating a little bit is probably just fine.
Well, the votes are in and we’ve decided on a Yoga schedule! We’re going to be hosting Sunrise Yoga on Tuesday mornings at 7. Classes will run for 10 weeks starting October 4, 2016. We invite you to join us for 2 free classes on September 20 and 27!
$40 for members*; $80 for non-members (+GST) *MORFIT Members attend free with their non-member friends who register!