Cadence Community: Jeff's Experience


An old friend of mine visited Cadence this week, as he is opening his own studio in Kingston, Ontario (Apex Indoor Cycling). I really wanted him to understand that what makes Cadence what it is, is our community of people and type of person that we attract. I am so proud of and grateful to the Cadence community  for making Jeff feel so welcome. This was  not done out of obligation but because this comes naturally to the type of people that have made Cadence a second home. Every time I looked, someone else was talking to him, introducing themselves to him or wishing him good luck. That's the vibe and the person that we, and when I say that I mean everyone including guests, staff, and instructors, has attracted.

After Jeff took my Saturday class we drove to lunch and he was talking about his experience. What stuck out to me was when he said  "There is just no negativity." At that point, I asked him to write a blog about what he experienced at Cadence over the past three days and four classes. With no coaching whatsoever, here is  what he saw and felt he was a part of. I could not be more proud. His experience has been my vision for Cadence from the day it opened.

- Mike


pic mike and jeffMike Porter and I have been friends for years. And, when I started to follow his business a few years back I was extremely intrigued as to what made Cadence so special.

I read the blogs and things that people wrote in posts on Facebook and Twitter and was really interested to get a sense of what all the fuss was about. Last summer, I had a vision to transition into a new career path and, taking Mike’s move to create Cadence as inspiration, decided that I was going to open an indoor cycling studio of my own in Kingston, Ontario.

After about 20 years, Mike and I re-connected as I reached out to him for some guidance and direction on starting my new venture. From day one he was super accommodating and helpful as I was winding my way through site selection, bike choice, scheduling systems, etc. Basically, all the tangible stuff.

Whenever I would talk with him, it was undoubtedly clear that his vision for Cadence was far beyond the bricks and mortar or fancy spin bikes. He kept reciting community, genuine care for people and their well being as his true vision for Cadence.

As I get closer to opening my studio in early May, I took Mike’s invitation to come out, visit him and immerse myself in the “fountain of youth” that is Cadence. What I have experienced is true inspiration and direction on what I want to create in my own studio.

From the moment I walked in the door, I felt a unique sense of belonging as friendly staff and other members of the Cadence community greeted me. In the common area before class, people were engaged in conversation at all levels and the atmosphere was energetic and a little electric. There was a feeling of anticipation mixed with an eagerness to accomplish something.

That air and feeling continued as the shades were drawn, the lights dimmed and people settled into their space for the next 45 minutes. As we started into our warm up, I got a sense that I was pulling and contributing to something not as an individual, but as a part of something bigger. The closeness of the studio is apparent and although you don’t converse during the class, the energy of the 30 riders is vividly and physically apparent. As Mike dialed up the intensity and the room began to get warm, a feeling of “Hakuna Matata” came over me. No worries. Everyone was there for a reason. That reason was void of any negativity and was super charged with positive energy that embraced the room.

The 45 minute session was intense, fast paced and super rejuvenating. Positive shout outs from Mike and the crowd were simultaneous at times and the applause at the end of the workout was one you’d hear at the end of an Angus Young guitar solo.

Post workout, we commented to each other on how good we all felt. Complete strangers to me an hour earlier where asking what I thought about my experience and were inquiring about life and other matters, like we’d been acquaintances for years. There was never a hint of intimidation, pretentiousness, ego, status or otherwise.

In a word, it felt like family.

In this fast paced world we live in, we often get ahead of ourselves and let our busy schedules dictate who and what we are. Places like Cadence allow us to positively reset our minds. For 45 minutes you can put all of the negativity and weight of your situation on pause. It’s liberating and stimulating at the same time.

I am sad to have to leave to go back to Kingston, but am truly excited that I had the opportunity to see what Cadence has become and feel challenged to emulate some of the magic in my studio back home. Bravo, Mike, for the vision and determination to create it, and kudos to the community and staff that fosters and supports each other through it.

Thanks for the open arms and opportunity to become a part of the Cadence community.

Nutrition Insight: Cooling Things Down As Spring Warms Up


Cadence team member and registered Holistic Nutritionist Erin Riddell shares some cool (literally) nutrition tips as we give spring a big warm welcome.


A big welcome to spring! It's a time that’s full of energy and visual transitions happening everywhere, but do you ever think of the transition your body goes through?

It's in spring that our bodies want to lighten up and shed the heaviness of Winter.  Spring’s energy gives us what we need to truly fulfill our goals, plans and dreams. Really, it’s a season of renewal. Along with that, our bodies naturally want to detox.

Did you cringe when you heard the word ‘detox’? I don’t blame you. Detox has most definitely gotten a rep as an aggressive process that's used for a quick diet fix. The truth is, our bodies naturally detox on a daily basis.

The foods we eat assist in this daily activity which is why spring is an important time to make sure our bodies are getting what it needs. If we continually feed our body the same way as winter-heavy meals, or processed/refined foods in general, it will be using too much energy to digest our foods and not enough for spring cleaning.

As mentioned, spring is a time to lighten up, meaning transitioning meals from stews and chilis to more salads, raw vegetables, seeds and sprouted grains. Spring is also a time to introduce or increase sour and bitter flavors into our diet.

Why you ask? Sour flavours having a cooling quality (yin property) on the body which will help with the 'lightening'. Bitter flavours again have a cooling property, help with energy within the body and combat inflammation. There’s a reason soups, stews and chilis are eaten in the winter: to keep us warm. As the weather begins to get warmer, our bodies don’t need assistance in keeping warm - it needs assistance in cooling down.

Some examples of Sour and Bitter flavors:

  • Sour flavours: Lemon, Lime, Grapefruit
  • Bitter Flavours: Rye, Romaine, Greens, Quinoa, Asparagus, Alfalfa

On top of cleaning up your diet in spring, it should also be a time to adjust eating patterns to get the most out of what you're putting into it. Instead of eating 1 - 2 large meals, try having 4-5 smaller meals a day. These meals should be nutrient packed, hence why salads and raw vegetables are on the rise in spring.

If you're sitting there thinking “raw vegetables are boring”, give the recipe below a try. It will most definitely prove you wrong!

Raw Mexican Cauliflower Salad with Romaine Wraps

  • Half head of cauliflower-cut into florets
  • 3 carrots-roughly chopped
  • Green onions-roughly chopped
  • 2-3 cloves garlic (if you love garlic use 3)
  • 2 avocados
  • Juice of 2 limes
  • 4-5 romaine leaves
  • 2 cups cooked Quinoa (cook according to package)
  • ¼ cup sunflower seeds
  • ¼ cup pumpkin seeds
  • Cumin to taste (approx. 2-3 tbsp)
  • Sea salt to tast
  • Pepper to taste
  • Chili powder to taste (approx. 2-3 tbsp)
  • Garlic powder-to taste (approx. 2-3 tbsp)

**If you like spicy foods, add cayenne pepper**

  1. Add cauliflower pieces to food processor and process until small pieces (not pureed). Once done add to large mixing bowl.
  2. Add carrots, green onions, garlic and seeds to food processor and process until small pieces (not pureed). Add to same bowl as cauliflower.
  3. Add cooked quinoa to bowl. Mix well.
  4. Add avocados and lime juice to food processor and process until becomes a puree. Once done, add to mixing bowl and mix well with other ingredients.
  5. Add cumin, chili powder, garlic salt, salt and pepper-mix well.
  6. Add more spices depending on your taste preference.
  7. Use romaine leaves as a shell (wash and pat dry with paper towel) and add amount of mixture you’d prefer to it

This recipe makes a large portion so it’s an easy lunch for the entire week. Enjoy!

PIC ER headshot 02-25-14  Connect with Erin on Twitter (@NaturalH_RHN) to stay up on nutrition tips, good reads, great recipes and more!

Fitness Insight: Cross Training


This week on the blog, Aaron De Jong, local Personal Trainer and owner of Flourish Wellness, brings cross training into the spotlight with the what, the why and the how to make it work for you.


Two words: cross training. For some reason, they're two words that are daunting and unknown. After their being mentioned, the flurry of questions and comments follows: “Does that mean I have to do CrossFit?”  “I don’t want to get to bulky.”  “I don’t want to pay for a trainer.”  “The gym sucks.”

All concerns aside, cross training isn't so scary. It can allow you to tone your body and enjoy new activities without taking up more time in your week. You don’t (and won’t) need to spend massive amounts of cash and, yes, the gym can become fun.

If you need some convincing, let me explain what cross training is, some benefits and a couple helpful options to make it work for you.

PIC ADJ02 03-21-14Cross training is very simple. It's incorporating exercise(s) into your life that will challenge and work relatively unused muscle groups, improving muscle function and performance on a cross-functional basis. Cross training takes into consideration the fact that many muscles in different parts of the body contribute to a single activity. To get the most out of any activity and to do it safely, you must pay attention to all the muscles in your body that are involved in what you’re doing.

No, you don't need to ‘hit the gym’; it’s simpler than that. For example, a cardio-heavy exerciser can substitute one run a week for another activity. Instead of running four times a week on the same route, they can change up their route or substitute one run with a swim or a bike ride. It's really all about variety.

We have so many muscle groups in our body and they work best when working together. Muscular and musculoskeletal injuries are often caused by overuse. Sore knees, hips, ankles and backs can often be attributed to loading without adequate muscle tissue supporting and absorbing repeated loading patterns.

Now, the benefits:

  • Reduce exercise boredom
  • Reduce injury risk
  • Learn new movements and activities
  • Gain confidence
  • Burn more fat due to added working muscle tissue
  • Improved energy
  • Ability to exercise different groups on consecutive days
  • Connect with new or familiar faces all while trying new activities
  • is exciting!

How can you make it work for you? Try different cardiovascular exercises, strength training routines, flexibility activities, circuit classes or agility drills. And remember: while there is a lot of information and misinformation pertaining to exercise available, always listen to your body and find activities you like to do.  There is absolutely no denying how you can feel in your body when it is properly balanced and you are able to do any of the physical activities you desire!

The reality is, we all need this to be a part of a successful long term exercise routine. For continued discussion, questions or comments or if you are looking for a fitness consult, don’t hesitate to contact me.

PIC ADJ 03-21-14Aaron de Jong

Happy training!

Get To Know Dr. Peter


'The things you do for yourself are gone when you are gone, but the things you do for others remain as your legacy.' - Kalu Kalu

March 29 marks Cadence's third Charity Ride. A couple of weeks ago we introduced the charity the ride is in support of—The Dr. Peter AIDS Foundation—and, as we will open up registration for the charity classes tomorrow, we wanted to take a minute to tell you a little more about this awesome organization.

Created by and as a lasting legacy of Dr. Peter Jepson-Young, the foundation is dedicated to providing comfort care to people living with HIV/AIDS. Peter was diagnosed with the disease in 1985 and, once his condition worsed to a degree where he could no longer practice medicine, he turned his focus to educating the community at large on HIV/AIDS. Over a two year period, his experience flecked with humor and honesty was captured in a 111 episode series that aired on CBC. The Dr. Peter Diaries can still be found on the CBC website.

PIC drPLogo

Since the foundation's inception in 1992, the progressive work that it has supported has been a game changer in the realm of care and support for those living with HIV/AIDS. One of their largest goals that became a reality in 2003 was to open a 24-hour care residence and day-health program. Having been previously housed in a wing of the St. Paul's Hospital, the Dr. Peter AIDS Foundation successfully raised enough capital to build a four-storey care facility that can now support a larger number of day and permanent care patients with the physical, mental and emotional support needed in their battle with HIV/AIDS.

We are so excited to be holding the upcoming charity ride in support of this organization as they continue making an impact on Vancouver's communities. Come out on Saturday, March 29 and hop on a bike to support the Dr. Peter Foundation. The schedule will go live tomorrow, and it's $25 per class with all funds raised going directly to the foundation.

Let's ride to keep Dr. Peter's legacy alive!

In Thanks....


CadencelogotrademarkThere was a time when Cadence existed of 2 instructors and 5 bikes in a living room. This seems like so long ago, but in reality it's been just over three years. We used the living room 'studio' as a test-kitchen to see which brand of bike riders liked the best and to help inform my decision on which bikes to buy. This evolved to having new instructors teach free classes in our loft at 6:30 every morning for about 4 months. This was when Cadence was in its infancy. It was funny at the time, but it turned out to be a perfect way to bring awareness to what good Spinning would look like. Among other things, it was also an experience in the process of auditioning and hiring on new instructors. Jaci Edgeworth was the first instructor to teach at the loft and has been a solid part of the Cadence instructor staff and community ever since.

I have gotten to know Jaci very well as a co-worker, a coach and a friend. She is the quiet type until she gets on the bike, where she brings the authentic motivation that can only come from an athlete and a mindset that she possesses.

PIC JE headshotI have also coached Jaci through two marathons and two personal bests. She gets it done. I always know when coaching her that the opportunity for her is to hold back a little. She is one of those people that just takes coaching and implements it which makes her an absolute pleasure to coach.

As an instructor, her evolution both in personality and technique has been really cool to watch. While there is no one specific way of instructing that is going to work for everyone, at Cadence we do take a stand for certain things in our classes. We won’t do anything on the bike that is dangerous or has no benefit and Jaci has been a consistent stand for those principles from day one.

She takes feedback and always continues to improve, taking an obvious interest in keeping, as she would put it, “at the top of her game”. Even as her pregnancy progressed, she proactively would send me emails asking me if her classes were slipping as the weeks and months went on (note: they weren’t).

I always value Jaci’s opinions on the studio and the Spinning industry in general. What's most important at Cadence is doing everything for the right reasons, authentically caring for people’s well being and not being about the money. Jaci is a shining example of that culture.

Due to have her first baby in a few weeks, I wanted to give Jaci a big 'thank-you' for doing everything she does. Jaci, you care about people, always want the best for them and I have learned a lot from you. We will miss you as an instructor for a few months but I know you will be itching to get back with the newest Minnesota Vikings fan in tow.

Congratulations and thank-you.


Sweat: The Ultimate Way To Give


CadencelogotrademarkSweat: the ultimate way to give. From supporting Movember to generating awareness about the CKNW Orphan’s Fund, we’ve had a total blast at our charitable rides at Cadence. And, this March marks our third ride that will contribute to a very worthy cause close to the heart of one of Cadence’s most dedicated members. John Evans is a long time rider at Cadence. He’s a huge part of our community and, through charitable work and contributions, the Vancouver community at large. Knowing of John’s charitable work, Mike asked him what organization the next charity ride should benefit. Without missing a beat, John suggested the Dr. Peter AIDS Foundation.

The Dr. Peter AIDS Foundation provides seven-day-a-week care to people living with HIV/AIDS in addition to the joint challenges of extreme poverty, mental illness, homelessness and multiple medical conditions.  Its focus is on helping clients improve their overall health, which they achieve through offering nutritious meals, specialized nursing, counseling, art and music therapy and medication management.

PIC drPLogo

It was nearly thirteen years ago when John began working with the foundation. He originally was involved in a capital campaign that enabled the group to fund the build of the Dr. Peter Centre – a standalone (and one of a kind) HIV/AIDS Day Health Center. Now an Honorary Director on the foundation’s board, John continues his involvement in the organization and his relationship with the family of Dr. Peter Jepson-Young.

The Dr. Peter community is grateful to be supported by the upcoming charity ride, taking place on March 29, 2014:

“We’re thrilled Cadence and its riders are supporting us through this event,” says Maxine Davis, Executive Director of the Dr. Peter AIDS Foundation. “It’s inspiring to see the community come together to make a difference in the lives of people living with HIV/AIDS.”

Registration for the ride will open on March 15, two weeks prior to the ride. Cost per seat will be $25.00, with all proceeds raised from the day going to benefit the foundation. You’ve got four chances to get on a bike and show your support for this local group making a big difference in the Vancouver community: 8:00am, 9:30am, 10:45am and 12:00pm.

Come on out to support the Dr. Peter AIDS Foundation – looking forward to seeing you there!

Nutrition Tips | The Unsweet Truth About Sugar


CadencelogotrademarkAh, Valentine’s Day. It’s a day where chocolate and other sweets run a’plenty and where the concept of nutrition takes the form of cinnamon hearts and truffles. With the recommended daily intake of sugar being slightly more than what’s in a Lara bar (18 grams of sugar), it’s easy to overdo it on days like Valentine’s. Celebratory dates aside, prolonged over consumption of sugar can have some serious effects on our bodies. Most sugar is refined and processed, which means all the natural vitamins and minerals are removed from its original form. Our bodies cannot recognize this ‘incomplete’ substance and uses its own vitamin and mineral stores to metabolize it. This leaves us with imbalances that cause cravings: bring on ‘hangry’ and the beginning of a vicious cycle of ‘must-have-more’.

You may be thinking “Well, fruit has sugar.” Absolutely they do - however it’s natural sugar in its whole form meaning it’s filled with its own vitamins and minerals that help with digestion in the body. The body can process it without depleting it’s own valuable vitamin and mineral stores.

So, what can prolonged consumption of excess sugar do to our bodies?

  • Leaches vitamin and minerals from bones and blood (leading cause of Osteoperosis)
  • Blood sugar spikes causing nausea, headaches and fatiguse
  • Intense blood sugar level drops causing mood swings, anxiety, more sugar cravings, irritability, heart palpitations and depression
  • Insulin resistance and diabetes
  • Lowers immunity: our immune system is suppressed for 24 hours after eating refined sugar
  • Weight gain

Personally, I refer to sugar as a drug. Why, you ask?

  • It is highly addictive (right up there with coffee)
  • Sugar lifts you up and all of a sudden will drop you
  • It leaves you wanting more
  • When coming off it, it leaves you moody, irritable, fatigued and with a headache

Kind of sounds like withdrawal, no? Those cravings your body sends you, sends you looking for your ‘fix’ and the cycle repeats all over again.

So, what to do? I’m in no way renouncing sugar or suggesting to never consume it again. What I’m offering is a new awareness around the impacts of over-intake.

Keen to cut some refined sugars? Give these replacements a try:

  • in baking use raw honey, stevia, organic grade B maple syrup
  • give coconut sugar a try (has all of its nutrients-so no blood sugar spikes and is low-glycemic) - it has a really nice rich flavour
  • keep fruit, nuts/seeds at your desk at work or in a bag for on the go snacks

Sweet treats are still totally possible without the sugar – like these brownies below.

No-Bake Creamy Brownies

  • 1 cup dates-soaked and pitted
  • 1 ½ cup walnuts-soaked (can substitute for cashews, pecans or mixture of all of them)
  • 3-4 tbsp cacao (not cocoa)
  • 2-3 tsp vanilla
  • 2 tbsp coconut oil-melted
  1. Add dates and walnuts to food processor and process until a paste is formed. If you find it’s not mixing well, add a bit of the date water from soaking the dates until it blends well. Add in small amounts - you don’t want to overdo it
  2. Add in vanilla and cacao, process until well blended.
  3. Melt coconut oil and add to processor. Again, process until well blended.
  4. Pour into a small square pan or roll into bite size balls (easiest but messy). Put in the refrigerator for about 20-30 minutes.

ENJOY! ( ** and keep refrigerated**)


Erin Riddell is a Cadence team member and Registered Holistic Nutritionist whose nutrition advice is sought out by Cadence riders and staff members alike.

How Sweat Connects


CadencelogotrademarkIn an ode to BC's Family Day (Monday, February 10), Cadence guest blogger Jess Robson reflects on how gathering your clan to sweat together creates a closeness like nothing else. -----------

In spending more time at Cadence, I started hearing about some families that come into the studio to sweat together. As my family 'athletics' involved countless lift line ups at the ski hill and the occasional pitched putter on the golf course, I was intrigued to learn more about these sweaty families. I connected with Myriam Glotman—longtime Cadence regular, wife and mother of three (among many other things!)—to see what her experience of getting everyone together to sweat means for her family.

Fitness has been a connecting factor in the Glotman family for years. Myriam and Geoff met running on the seawall and, as their family grew, their kids became active early on. Both team and individual sports were a large part of the kids' youth, which was complimented by regular family-based activities like hiking and running. As the kids grew up, the active lifestyle the family had built early on sustained itself, even with kids heading off to university.

"When the kids come back from university, I make sure that we are all signed up for a Saturday morning class early on so we can all go spin together. It's something that's a common ground for us; plus we have a ton of fun doing it as a family."

Being a connected family unit has only been deepend through the time the Glotmans spend getting active together and has translated into more time spent as a family outside the studio. Plus, Myriam commented on the benefits that fitness (read: getting a good sweat on) has had for everyone in her family.

"The family really gets the connection between a healthy body and a healthy mind; that fitness helps to handle stress, enables them to be more confident and can connect them to a diverse, like-minded community. I'm glad everyone got hooked on getting active!"

The Glotmans are an example that people that sweat together, stay together. The benefits of getting active as a family run as deep as they do wide. Whether you're considering the connectivity that a shared experience fosters, the physical benefits, the mental clarity that exercise brings or the sheer fun that's to be had with loved ones.


Enjoy your family day, everyone! While the studio will be closed on Monday (in lieu of the holiday), come on by for a group sweat with some of your loved ones (friends or family) sometime soon. Nothing like getting a good sweat on together!

A Guide to Gut Checks.

This week on the blog, Jess Robson, a freelance writer (and born-again-spinner) shares some insight into what it takes for her to stay true to her goals with sometimes too many (her words) things on the go. For this multi-trade lady, it's all about her belly. ------------------------------------

I am recovering from a chronic disease. I am on the mend from  'peoplepleaseitis'— a condition that studies (ahem - reflection on my childhood diaries) indicate I attained in my youth. Onset by the need to please others, belong and be liked, the condition worsened as I loaded my schedule with more, and more, and more. Doing more in an attempt to help and please others, I began to listen less to what my body was trying to tell me. I functioned more to feel less, until the signs and signals from my bod got too loud to ignore.

Throughout all the 'busyness' I created for myself, I was accompanied by a very angry body. I had tummy troubles, had chronic pain and soreness and attracted injuries and even a hernia (for real). It was last year on a trip to Iceland where, being there for a yoga retreat with Ryan Leier, I slowed down; physically and mentally. Each day was about being on our mats, nourishing our bodies and being with the people and the environment around us. I switched off, tuned in and broke through. For once in 26 years, I stopped and I listened - to my gut. And, for once in a long time, it was silent.

I took it as a hint: that doing less can mean living more, listening is the key and there's much to learned from my body. So, upon returning to Vancouver, I (very slowly) started to check in with myself. Those check-ins—on walks along the beach, after a big workout, reflecting on wins and opportunities at work—weren't just about what my brain was telling me, but what my body was saying; how I physically felt and what it meant in relation to what I was doing. And holy heck, did I have some adjustments to make to  what I was up to.

The things that my inner (gut) guide tells me to do more of (that I am making more time for)?

  • CREATE - make things. Write stuff. Get it on paper. Then share it.
  • SLEEP - more than four hours a night. Seven, to be exact. And sometimes get up without an alarm clock.
  • CONNECT - talk to my people. Phone, FaceTime, email, text, handwritten letters. Nourish relationships.
  • SWEAT - move to find my center. Yoga. Run. Swim. Spin.

Getting reconnected to the things that make me the happiest internally led me back to things I missed - like my yoga mat, some long distance friends and, you bet, classes at Cadence. Getting a great sweat on AND connecting with my people? Heck yes.

I'm trying on the 'listening to my body' thing and it's working thus far. If I'm tired, I sleep. If I'm hungry, I eat. If my chest is tight, I look for what I could be anxious about (then book myself in for a Spin class to sweat it out). See you on the bikes, Cadence...I'll be the one letting the 'icks' out and the goodness in.

Training Insight: R + R

CadencelogotrademarkWhen Mike asked me to guest article for Cadence’s blog, we came up with the idea of rest as a topic.  It’s easy to get carried away with new training and maybe even moreso a workout like spinning, which provides a good level of intensity without the post-exercise soreness typically associated with other workouts. Regardless of how you're training, the key to breaking through to the next level in your physical goals is through a little R'n'R: rest and relaxation. Although the soreness is diminished, primarily due to the fact that there is no eccentric (braking against gravity) contraction phase in cycling, it is still critical to take rest (read: recovery) seriously.  Similar to feeling like you missed getting your sweat on in swimming (yes, you are still sweating), a good intense spin, although there’s less soreness, will deplete your reserves and will need to be replenished.

There is much to consider when getting involved with an exercise or training program. Some things to ask yourself are questions like: 'What’s my goal?', 'What’s convenient?', and 'What’s engaging and fun?'

One of the aspects of training I notice many exercisers and athletes forget is how much recovery time to include. So often, people I talk to have the idea that the training is what ultimately yields the result.  However, our ability to improve, whatever the training goal, rests on two major factors: the ability to execute a training program that causes an overreaching of current capacities (strength, power, endurance or combinations) and the ability to recover the central nervous system (CNS) and tissues fully from training bouts to the point where the desired capacities increase (supercompensation).

Human physiology doesn’t recognize differences in types of stressors.  As a whole, it reacts the same way whether the stressors are physical or otherwise (i.e. mental, emotional etc.). If overreaching occurs too long, via training intensity and/or duration and/or frequency, the result is overtraining.  The symptoms are often persistent soreness, fatigue, elevated heart rate at rest, irritability, depression, increased susceptibility to infections and injury.

“Overtraining syndrome is a neuroendocrine disorder characterized by poor performance in competition, inability to maintain training loads, persistent fatigue, reduced catecholamine excretion, frequent illness, disturbed sleep and alterations in mood state.” - MacKinnon, 2000

Assessing recovery needs is not cut and dry and can require some experimentation. Let’s also factor in often forgotten factors of nutrition, sleep, family, work, traffic, and financial issues (to name a few) on top of training and there are many places to look for reasons of overtraining.

When designing programs, there is only so much a coach/trainer can do to keep the athlete/client performing. And, with a specific goal in mind, it’s easy to get carried away.  I’ve seen many clients that shoot out of the gate and succumb to long periods of overreaching yet keep pushing through.  For some, exercise is in fact physiologically addicting (let’s just be aware of this!) as natural endorphins and dopamine become more present in the system.

There are many ways to monitor status of the CNS, which is responsible for communications between all systems and regions in the body, is functioning ideally.  Scientifically valid questionnaires (POMS, RESTQ, Hooper-MacKinnon) and indexes are good, but can be subjective and require interpretation by the coach and honesty from the athlete/client.  A more practical and objective measure is the CNS Tap test (, which you can get as an app for iOS and android (although practice effect and awareness may skew the result). The best way however is to pay close attention to what your body tells you and be honest about what factors are affecting you and your performance in training.  Keeping a journal is a simple and great way for regular exercisers to monitor changing factors.


Interested to learn more? Here's some further reading and resources:

Tempo. Inspiration. Music.

Its certainly no secret that an instructor's playlist and level of motivation is the driving force for the Spin classes at Cadence.  Putting together a playlist that motivates both the guests and the instructor is so important for the experience. There are many studies which have proven that music not only makes the class more enjoyable, but also has a positive effect both psychologically and physically.  So, the next time you hear your instructor prompting you to match your pedal stroke to the beat of the music, understand that like everything we do at Cadence, there is a purpose! The below is an excerpt from an article written by Nicole Jeffery, Music the fuel for performance overdrive by Olympic athletes, and originally published in The Australian in July of 2012. The article explores the impact of music and it's ability to relax an athlete prior to competition or inspire an improvement in performance, all based on the kind of beat and lyrics in the songs. You can find the complete article online here.


Research into the influence of music on athletic performance has shown that the right beat and lyrics not only puts an athlete into the right frame of mind to perform at their best but also improves their performance.

Sports psychologist Peter Terry, who has worked with British and Australian athletes at eight Olympic Games and will be assisting the Australian shooting team in London, is convinced that music is a powerful tool in sport.

Terry, professor of psychology at the University of Southern Queensland in Toowoomba, says there are generally four effects of music that are supported by a large body of scientific evidence.

The most obvious is "to enhance mood, to slow us down or speed us up -- that's the most reliable effect", and the one Phelps uses so effectively.

But music also has been shown to improve endurance performance, assisting people to run 18 per cent longer, according to research by Terry and his English colleague, Costas Karageorghis of Brunel University. "The performance effects are fairly reliable in sports like running, cycling, rowing ergo tests," Terry says.

Despite more effort, there is a perception of less exertion. "When people listen to music, they believe they are working less hard than when they don't listen to music. It's about 10 per cent difference in the training environment."

But it is not just perception: research suggests music has a physical effect. "When you are doing the same amount of work while listening to music, you use 1-2 per cent less oxygen," Terry says.

The reason for this is unknown but Terry speculates it is owing to the metronome effect of moving your body to the beat of the music.

"It may be due to the efficiency of the rhythm, that a person makes fewer micro-adjustments to their technique, or it could be a general relaxation response that enhances oxygen efficiency," he says. "Music is most effective when matching the tempo of the music to the tempo of the activity. We call that synchronous music. If you want to run at a pace of 140 beats per minute, you choose music at that tempo. But with elite athletes they need slower music because they run at 180 beats per minute and there's no music fast enough for that so they tend to choose 90 beats per minute and take two strides per beat."

One of the greatest distance runners in history, Ethiopia's Haile Gebrselassie, recognised this benefit long ago. In a famous illustration of the power of music he requested Scatman to be played on the PA system to help him break a world record in Birmingham in 1998. He explained that the song's rhythm was "a little bit faster than the rhythm of my legs. That always motivated me."

The International Association of Athletic Federations subsequently banned the use of music for that purpose. "They acknowledged that it worked," Terry says.

The beat may have a physical effect, but Terry says the whole package -- a song's tempo and lyrics -- has psychological effects. He experienced music's uplifting effect as he battled to complete his first marathon. "I was almost out of my feet but in the last mile I could hear Chariots of Fire coming from the stadium and that lifted me to run the last mile," he says.

Before competition, an athlete's response to music is more emotional than physical. "Louder, faster music tends to raise arousal levels," Terry says. "What you are doing is modulating your mood."

Not all athletes are looking for Eye of the Tiger.


The article goes on to share some examples of different athletes and the music they use to elicit their highest performance responses, and where Peter Terry dives deeper into stoking the competitive fire in high performance athletes. Check out what Mr. Terry has to say and get to building your own inspiring playlist (with or without Eye of the Tiger).

We've also just kicked off our Music page here on the Cadence website to get you inspired with tunes that you hear in classes each week. Keep your eye on the page to see what our instructors share!

Small changes, big impact ... to a healthy, clean 2014!

Chocolates, cookies, pastries, eggnog - still have remnants of the holidays hanging around your house? The start of a new year comes with fresh beginnings and an opportunity to set yourself up for a healthy year. Toss the holiday treats and take on some of these simple yet helpful tips to stay on track with your goals, resolutions and intentions for 2014! 1. Simplify your food. It's all about buying fewer boxed goods and more fresh, colourful, whole foods. Get out of the aisles at the grocery store and shop the perimeter.  If you need to buy packaged food, buy items with the most familiar and fewest ingredients possible. A quick tip for people on the go: instead of relying on the coffee shop on your way to work for fast meals, look for a spot that sells fresh juices, smoothies and meals they make in house with fresh, whole ingredients (fresh juice and smoothies bars are popping up everywhere!).

2. Kick out refined food. Refined foods (ie: any flour that is bleached or processed/modified before consumption) are stripped of their nutrients and may be fortified with synthetic vitamins and minerals. Make the switch to whole grain products that use grains such as whole wheat, quinoa, buckwheat or brown rice as their base.

3. Let go of 'can't have' diet plans. Create a comprehensive approach to your nutrition by increasing the amount of nutrient rich, healthy foods in your diet. This helps your body grow used to these foods and you will start to desire them instead of foods that are less healthy.  And, psychologically, you will struggle less with cravings and wanting to hop off your plan as you’re not telling yourself you can’t have something. Be gentle with yourself by not 'cutting out' all the less healthy foods you enjoy; 'cheat days' can lead to a string of choices you may regret - so go easy on yourself and enjoy that treat or snack that makes you feel satisfied. One meal is not going to derail your progress.

*If you do take an approach to the New Year by cutting certain items from your diet, try and do so in stages. Take one item out per month and experiment with healthier alternatives. Remember: this is a lifestyle change, not a fad diet.

4. It’s not just what you eat but how you eat. Food isn’t just something on your plate; it’s also how you think about it. Think of food as nourishment and fuel and create some intention around your meal times. Take time to chew your food and reconnect with it by noticing the flavors, textures and how it makes you feel. Do you ever forget  how your food tasted at your last meal? Blazing through meals doesn't allow for the same eating awareness - and odds are you probably felt like you over-ate, too.

5. Try new things! Challenge yourself to try something new once or twice a week. Swap almond or coconut milk for regular milk, try a green smoothie or a smoothie in general for breakfast, drink lemon water in the morning, try a new recipe, drink tea instead of coffee, try a meat free meal (or meatless Mondays), or give  juicing a go. Diversity is the key to keeping your taste buds interested and staying on track for the rest of the year!

In the name of finding new ways to get your sweet fix, check out the recipe below. It's a great alternative if you usually eat a granola bar or pastry for breakfast or a snack. Enjoy!

Peanut Butter Coconut Balls

1 cup peanut butter (or almond butter)

1/2 cup coconut flour

1/2 cup coconut flakes

4 tbsp coconut milk

4 tbsp coconut oil-melted

½ cup-3/4 cup honey

¼ cup ground flax

*MIX everything together in a bowl and let set in fridge for 30-40 minutes. Once set, roll into any size ball you’d prefer and roll balls in coconut flakes. If mixture isn’t sticking together well, add more honey until it’s no longer crumbly. Store in fridge for up to 7 days.

*for a sweet healthy treat you could also add cacao nibs*

Community at the Cadence Core

It’s no secret that the Cadence community is something special. The most important aspect of Cadence that I envisioned was a welcoming community vibe that everyone would experience when they come through the door. Looking at 2013, I’d say we’ve gotten pretty closing to nailing that goal. I get hundreds of emails (seriously) from people making comments about their experience of the studio. They share things like their feeling so fortunate to be part of the Cadence community, how the friendliness and welcoming attitude of staff and guests at the studio is something very special, or saying that because of the community and friends they’ve made, they have found a new inspiration to stick to a workout when they’d never been able to before.

This is that initial vision coming to life.

I experienced one week in particular this year where the spirit of our community was undeniable. I had a friend. Pete, come to Vancouver from Toronto who I had not seen in 20 years. We went to university together in Ottawa, planted trees in Northern Ontario together and experienced everything else that goes along with that time in life. Seeing him again was awesome and we quickly picked up where we left off.

Seeing his experience of our community at Cadence – now THAT was a sight to see.

On the first day, after walking in with Jerry – a Cadence regular – within minutes, Pete was laughing and chatting with people whom he’d never met. It was like he’d been a regular at Cadence since we opened our doors.

Following the ride, Pete was on fire from the workout declaring: “I’m coming tomorrow for sure. I’m not missing THAT.” He had enjoyed his ride and the experience of the studio so much that he wanted to get in again before heading back to Toronto. And I couldn’t have been happier to hear him say that.

It was the next morning, a Saturday, before class that I was looking around from the stage when it hit me: that virtually everyone in the studio was speaking with someone else. Smiles were plastered on every face and there was a buzz of conversation; it was loud, it was friendly and it was energetic. Pete was one of these people talking and laughing with a girl next to him.

At the end of class, when people were finished stretching but still beside their bikes, I looked around and again, everyone was talking to the person next to them. Not quite as energetic, mind you, but equally as friendly and inviting.

It was so cool for me to finally sit back, allow myself to relish this and take it all in. To see so many people who have made new friends as a result of something we have built from the ground up was very special. It’s in the moment experiences of seeing an intention – an intangible aspect of a business – be fuelled by the people that make up a community. I am so thankful to every single person who has contributed their energy, excitement, smiles, warm welcomes, easy conversations, laughs (and more laughs) throughout the last two years. 2013 has been a blast, and we’re looking into 2014 with tons of excitement for what lies ahead. Yes, more classes, more sweat, more ways to push your limits. But more importantly, the year ahead holds more opportunities to meet and make new friends, elevate our Cadence community and the Vancouver community at large. Here we go, friends – let’s make this year a BIG one!

Nutrition Insight - Kicking Your Cold/Flu

It’s that time of year: cold and flu season. The temperatures drop and we all flock indoors to escape the chill, flooding coffee shops, restaurants and, yes, indoor fitness venues. With the leading cause of the 'common cold' being exposure to someone stuck with a cause of the coughs or suffering from the sneezes, it’s up to us to arm our immune systems as best we can. Sometimes, despite our best efforts, we do find ourselves suffering from a cold or flu. Here are some tips to help you get through the sniffles, coughs, sneezes and more and give your immune system a boost to stave off future flus: 

Keep hydrated. Being dehydrated can actually make matters worse, especially if you are suffering from a fever. Make sure you’re drinking at least 8-10 glasses of water/day. Herbal teas and broths are also great to drink; hot liquids have been shown to help stimulate immune systems.

Rest. Some of us try and keep going with our daily routine when we get a cold/flu. Symptoms of a cold or flu are a sign that you should take the time to slow down and rest. Getting enough rest will help get your immune system back on track.

Eat a healthy diet. Eating a well-balanced diet can help shorten the duration (or at least the severity) of the cold/flu, and provide your body with essential nutrients to help you bounce back. Most importantly, stay away from sugar as it weakens the immune system, thus making you sicker and prolonging your cold. If possible, try juicing. It is an amazing way to get a nutrient dense drink without burdening your body with using a lot of energy for digestion.

Some diet/nutrition tricks to try:

Eat spicy foods. Eating spicy foods can assist in breaking up nasal and sinus congestion. Garlic, turmeric, hot peppers and chillies are some examples of spices to have on hand. Try adding these spices to soups or even just warm water (see the tea recipe below). 

Guzzle ginger. Ginger helps clear congestion, supports the immune system, soothes sore throats and combats fever. Drink 2-3 cups of freshly made ginger tea (recipe below) daily or add it to soups, smoothies and juices.

Daily lemon water. Lemon water reduces fever, flushes bacteria and toxins from the body, is a natural antiseptic and cures throat soreness. Squeeze half-1 lemon into a glass and add 1 cup of warm-hot water.


Erin’s Ginger Tea Recipe:


- 2 quarts of water

- ½ pound ginger

- 5 lemons (sliced)

- Cinnamon (add to taste)

- Cayenne pepper-to taste (optional)

- 2-3 garlic cloves-sliced(optional)

**Boil water, then add all ingredients listed.

**Allow ingredients to boil together for 5-7 minutes. Enjoy!

Spin for the Kids

Thirty bikes. Three classes. One goal: generate some serious sweat in support of some serious good. We’re amped to announce the hottest (literally) way to say ‘Sayonara’ to 2013 and welcome in 2014, and all of it in the name of giving. December 31, 2013 – we’re raising our heart rates to raise funds and awareness for the CKNW Orphan’s Fund. Get in while you can – you won’t want to miss this. The last time a similar event took place at Cadence, it involved three dudes taking on a two-wheeled adventure with one shared vision: to raise awareness around men’s health issues and a little cause called Movember. The Cadence community came together to support Kevin, Jordan and Ben, the boys of the Moustache Ride Canada, in their mission to raise $100,000 towards the Movember Foundation. It was a one-ride event close to the start of their mission across Canada and a first for Cadence. All proceeds raised from the ride were contributed to the Mo’Ride team and, most importantly, the sense of community that the ride inspired was palpable.

This time, it’s all about spinning for the kids.

The mission of the CKNW Orphan’s Fund is simple:

The CKNW Orphans’ Fund are dedicated to enhancing the lives of children with physical, mental and social challenges living in BC Communities.

This awesome organization provides grants to low income households who have a child that requires something extra for their development – such as therapies, specialized medical equipment, educational bursaries, camperships and much more. An added bonus: their Executive Director, Jen Schaeffers, is a regular at Cadence.

Vancouver’s communities come together to support one another on the regular. We live in a city where volunteerism is thriving, where there are groups focused on creating positive change and where people are intrinsically inspired to contribute. Couple that with one of the healthiest cities in the nation and we’ve got a model for creating a contribution through a value added experience – sweat. The rides will be filled with tons of fun, a dash of passion and a whole lot of intention.

Join us on December 31st and spin for the kids. We’ve got three classes scheduled: 7:15am with Jaci, 9:30am with Natasha and 12:00pm with Mike.  There’s 30 bikes available for each class and it’s our goal to fill each seat. It’s the last sweat of the 2013 season team, so let’s make it count.

Sign up online  and do so quickly – seats will go fast.  It’s a special event, so these classes have a minimum donation of $25 for your seat, payable online when you sign up. All funds raised will be contributed to the charity and extra donations are encouraged (payable via cash, credit or debit) at the studio on the 31st. Sign up for one, two….maybe all three classes? Can't wait to see you on the 31st, friends!

Learn more about the CKNW Orphan's Fund here, and check out the full schedule and the schedule for December 31 at Cadence here.

Nutrition Insight - Stress and the Body

Do you feel tired or irritable, have food allergies, mood swings or cravings? Many of us suffer from constant stress yet may not know the root of the stress and it’s effect on our bodies. Stress is the way we react to situations and manifests itself in what we call a ‘fight or flight response’. While the physiological response process can aid us in moments of real danger, if left to it’s heightened stages of reaction for extended periods of time, it can cause negative effects to our bodies. The fight or flight response protects us because when faced with real danger we are going to have to react, and fast. During this response our brain sends messages to release adrenaline, which is our anti-stress hormone. As well, mass amounts of glucose and oxygen are sent to our muscles, our heart rate elevates and breath rate increases.

Another amazing aspect of this body response is how the body directs energy to areas of the body requiring an extra 'oomph' to operate. And, energy may be re-directed away from areas of the body like the digestive tract. Without energy present, the digestive tract cannot function. If digestion stops, food will sit in the intestines and ferment; which in the long run can cause inflammation, bloating, and food intolerance/sensitivities. Also, without proper digestion, nutrients from food will not be absorbed leaving a body malnourished.

It’s a fascinating thing that our bodies can react in such a way, especially as the process takes mere seconds. So, what happens in times of prolonged stress? When the adrenaline continues to pump through our bodies, our heart rate doesn’t decrease and hormones can’t return to normal levels? Without a body returning to homeostasis blood sugar problems, high blood pressure, fatigue, adrenal exhaustion and weight gain all become very real risks.

So what can we do about it? It all comes down to managing our reactions to stressors. Life will throw obstacles our way and it is how we deal with them that creates stress. So, to prepare ourselves, we can take on activities during the day that help keep our bodies in as neutral/natural a state as possible. Try things like:

  • Deep breathing. It can be done anywhere and only takes a few minutes. Take a moment to yourself (in your car, at your desk, in the elevator, etc) and take a deep inhale. Exhale slowly, attempting to make the exhale longer than the inhale. Repeat for two to three minutes.
  • Limit alcohol and caffeine when possible. Both alcohol and caffeine cause the release of adrenaline in the body – a lead reaction in stress creation. Adrenaline also interferes with metabolism, so long-term use may cause weight gain, and can cause nervous tension and irritability.
  • Looking to what you can learn from the obstacle. Navigating life’s obstacles makes us stronger, and there’s a lesson in every bump in the road. How can what you’re experiencing give you knowledge, strength or a new perspective?
  • Feeding your body. Fruit, nuts/seeds, dark chocolate (at least 70%) for an afternoon energy blast. Whole grains and fruits/veg when eating at home or on the go.

Lastly, there is nothing more important than taking care of yourself. Take time out of the day to do so – multiple times, if needed! Exercise, walking, being out in nature, massage, baths, reading - anything you enjoy to unwind. During this time, it’s important to let go of what may have happened during the day, learn from it and allow it to make you stronger. The past is the past, live for the now and get excited about the future.

Fitness. Sweat. Focus. Mornings - done right.

Often what I “get” out of exercise, or what I expect to get out of it, will change many times from the time I start to when I finish. I experience this especially when I run because - when I am not gutting myself in a training session and allow myself to enjoy a run - I have lots of time to think. I went out recently for a short run. It was my first run since the Sea Wheeze, which I went into with less than great training as a result of a parasite I had for 5 weeks in the summer.

I left home with the intention of “seeing what I had”. I seem to default into that competitive self where I compare 'today' to previous runs or races and what’s measurable (numbers, time, pace, splits, etc), and never accepting that I should be slower than before. The measurables were great on this recent run: heart rate, perceived exertion and speed were almost like I have not missed a beat.  All of this was encouraging considering I have not run for so long.

But WAY more important was the self-realization of what I tell everyone who comes to my morning classes; that clearing your head with some form of cardio will calm your mind and give you the confidence and focus to take on and have a productive successful day. Admittedly, with everything that goes with being an entrepreneur, my mind can get scattered before I even start my day...and that needs to change.

This hit me like a bag of hammers as I started to feel almost hypocritical during this run. While I get my cardio in daily, it's not often in the morning even though I know it's a good practice for me as it is such an awesome press of the reset button. I remember how morning hockey practices or run training sessions set me up for the day but somehow let myself lose that. Going out for a run with a different intention than to see how fast I am will have a much more positive impact and benefit me on a larger scale - with added focus for my day, clarity in my mind and a feeling of physical satisfaction. It's a re-realization of the right way for me to start my days - with cardio.

An a.m cardio session is the key to lasting mental clarity and focus throughout the day. Whether it is a run, a spin class or a swim, getting your heart rate up and creating a mental focus on nothing other than movement is that 'reset button' for our nervous systems, our hearts and our heads. The fact that I was able to sit down and write this after a run, without overthinking it is evidence enough for me to get back to this habit that I’ve missed for far too long. Plus, without running with stress of timing, I may get faster in the process. #addedbenefit. And, yes, I've gotten my cardio in first thing in the morning every day this week and am alreday feeling the positive impact. My challenge to you: give it a go and see how your days shift.

Thank You and Happy Holidays

In July, we opened our doors on a beautiful summer morning, jammed the studio and rocked the neighbourhood at 6 am. My dream of doing what I really love - helping and encouraging people get healthy in a fun, non intimidating environment, was in front of me and a little hard to believe.

I can say with 100 % sincerity that the last four months has been a crazy ride - and I wouldn't have it any other way! The community we are building together at Cadence and how it is evolving each day is more than I could have imagined. Having the great pleasure of meeting all of you has made my goal a reality. Each of you who come through the door every day and get on the bikes are creating this amazing community at Cadence. For me, this is what it's all about.

I talk about this with someone almost every day. The greatest thing about opening the studio is that I am meeting so many nice, like minded people daily - people I can now call my friends. I love the fact that I can just go hang out chat with any of you before class about your day or weekend. It is so fun for me. It is why I opened the studio – to bring a group of awesome people together in a fun environment and get a great workout while getting to know each other. You guys have created that at Cadence!

It seems as though I've blinked my eyes and four fantastic months have gone by. If all I did for the foreseeable future was get up every day to help people enjoy getting healthier and have fun while doing it, than I will be a very happy guy.

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to everyone and thank you so much for being such an important part of Cadence.

~ Mike

First Time Spinner

My first experience at Cadence Vancouver wasn’t a good one.

It started out well enough. A couple of good friends, Donnie and Katie, had convinced my girlfriend, Cora, and I to try out spin in late October. I got on the bike, took about 5 minutes to figure out how to clip myself in, and got into the class, lost in the music. The people around me looked like they were in great shape, and were really enjoying the class. I thought, “I could get used to this”.

About 15 minutes in, I felt my left calf start to seize up, followed by my right calf about 5 minutes later. I tried to stretch them out on the bike, slowing down to a near stop. At this point, I figured that even if I looked like a wuss next to my girlfriend (who was going strong) I needed to get off the bike. Of course, I had managed to pick a bike right in the middle of the studio, so I had to walk by more than half the people in class with my head down.

Mike was great – he told me not to worry about it, that I probably just didn’t have enough water and that I probably pushed myself too hard for the first time. He didn’t need to make excuses for me; I had plenty of my own, since I had decided to start spin without having done any regular exercise in several months. He followed up with me after the class via email with information about what could cause cramping, and things I could do to prevent it. I soon figured out (after talking to Cora, Donnie and Katie) that I also didn’t have the technique quite right. I wasn’t driving down with my heels, which would have been a lot easier on my calves.

Given Mike’s enthusiasm and follow up, I decided that I needed to give spin another shot. So, a week later, I showed up for a 6:15am class with Becky, made sure that I was driving down with my heels, and got through it!

Cora and I are now coming to four classes a week at Cadence. Other than the great workouts, it’s the sense of community that has us coming back. It’s the fact that whoever greets you at the door – whether it’s Mike, Tracy or Natasha – knows your name; they can almost grab your shoes off the rack before you’ve scanned in. It’s the follow up that they do between classes to make sure that you’re recovering from an injury. It’s the way the instructors remember what it is you are trying to get out of each class, and ask you about it at the end.

I’m probably preaching to the converted, but I’m so grateful that I was introduced to Cadence a month ago. Over the past month, I’ve noticed a huge change in my energy level during the work day (especially after one of Becky’s or Jaci’s 6:15am classes), and I find that I’ve been sleeping much better as well.

I’m looking forward to seeing what positive changes the coming months will bring.


It's Already Been a Month!!

This month has completely flown by. Opening morning will stay with me forever. A packed house, music cranking, familiar friendly faces everywhere that were genuinely happy to see Cadence come to fruition. Wow. Getting emotional just writing about this. Crazy.

To be honest the night before and the morning before class I was really nervous that I'd get emotional and struggle through class.  How would that look "alright everybody..." and than  I lose it. :) Months and month of hard work, ups and downs and finally, finally , finally I had opened myself and my space up to people who mostly I knew, but I was still on edge for sure. Thankfully, I did keep it together and put everyone through a great class. Thanks to everyone for the flowers, cards, well wishes and most importantly support for the last 4 months.

Never would I have thought that running the complimentary classes in the loft would have such an impact in laying the groundwork for the culture and feel I wanted to create in the studio. Its really not much different.  Just bigger. And louder.  I couldn't be happier with the way things have turned out. People are  just enjoying hanging out there.

I am meeting new people every day who are coming and loving their experience. Nice people. People I want to hang out with and become friends with. That's very cool.

Last week I went to the Submit party and I couldn't believe the number of people I knew. And this is all because of the studio. My good friend Darren, who came with me said he was surprised how many people he recognized from the studio as well.  We are creating a community.

What makes me even more happy is I know that in the loft and in the studio, I have gotten people into a habit of living a life that involves a fitness routine that they enjoy. Some people that, before this, did not even work out.  Now they are  actually enjoying it and that is my purpose.

Every morning I look forward to coming downstairs and seeing smiling faces ready to get their sweat on. There is no better way for me to start my day.

I have often said to Tracy that I feel guilty because I love this so much that  it really does not feel like work. Her comment to me has always been that I am living the life I love right now.  Enjoy it.