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What does it take to become an Olympic archer?


"I am from venezuela, I have nine years practicing archery and I love this sport, it's part of my life...

All coaches left my country to other countries by the abuse and the low value given to them, I have a few years of training without a coach, in 2010 I traveled to Canada to my grandmother's house and told him all the things I passed in archery in my country and she took me to an archery in calgary and helped me to buy a bow ( hoyt Alpha Burner) and talk to a Canadian coach to train me.

thanks to that I improve a lot and achieve shoot 1348 points, I know it's not much but fight hard to achieve...

I want to be an excellent archer, that's my goal, you could guide me, because I want to go to canada and become a excellent Canadia archer, what i have to do? there is a chance?

Please. Any help you can give me is appreciated."

Luis R.


Hello Luis!

Honestly you have three choices. And two of them will be quite expensive.

You either train yourself, which will cost less and require you to be doing archery 3-6 times per week.

Or you hire an archery coach to train you several times per week, which will cost you about $180 to $240 per week. (Roughly $9,000 to $12,000 per year.)

Or you could even hire a former Olympian archer to train you, which will be about $20,000 per year ($400 per week).

So yeah, it really depends on whether you want to pay for training or focus on self-improvement / Do It Yourself.

Charles Moffat

$100 off Personal Training

Cardio Trek limited time offer!

For a limited time sign up for 50 hours of personal training sessions for $1400 (regularly priced at $1500).

Or save $250 by signing up for 100 hours of personal training sessions for $2500 (regularly priced at $2750).

Offer expires on March 31st 2014 and is valid only to residents of Downtown Toronto / Uptown Toronto. (If you are not sure if you live within the area, email and ask.)

In other news Arnold Schwarzenegger recently went "undercover" at Gold's Gym in California to raise awareness about fitness / health and an after school fitness program.

Rob Ford's Weight Loss Plan

It is an election year in Toronto and Rob Ford thinks he can win the October 27th 2014 election and stay mayor of Toronto - if he can just lose some weight.

"The only way people are going to respect me, to bring back my image, is if I lose weight," says Rob Ford. "The rest falls into place."

And in case you haven't been watching lately, Toronto's crack smoking mayor (soon to be former crack smoking mayor?) has lost roughly 40 lbs since mid November 2013 when he was weighing in at 336 lbs and is now weighing in at roughly 295 lbs.

That is 41 lbs in 2 months. Roughly 9 weeks. A little over 4 lbs per week.

If he keeps going at that rate he is going to be 255 lbs by mid March - and have excess loose skin rolling off of him.

If he kept it up he could even be 205 lbs by mid May. In which case the loose skin around his face is going to become like Diefenbaker's jowls.

My thoughts? Slow down. Lose weight more slowly. Wait for your skin to catch up. If you lose weight too quickly your belly skin will end up looking like an apron.

So what exactly is Rob Ford doing in the gym you might ask?

Well Toronto's mayor, who has described himself in the past as "three hundred pounds of fun", is using the gym at Toronto City Hall almost every day and is also:

Jogging outdoors.

Leg Pressing 810 lbs.

Ford is really good at the leg press and also says he aims to one day leg press 1,000 pounds.

“If I do my bi(ceps)s on Monday, say, then I’ll do my legs Tuesday, chest Thursday, back, and so on, all week,” says Rob Ford.

He is doing a combination of cardio for 45 minutes and weight lifting exercises for another 45 minutes.

To put that in perspective a 295 lb person jogging for 45 minutes (without a break) burns 996 calories. We can assume that he is having breaks, so it will be less than that - possible 600 to 700 calories. The same person doing weightlifting for 45 minutes burns 305 calories.

So we are looking at Rob Ford burning about 900 to 1000 calories per 90 minute workout session. No wonder he is losing 20 lbs per month.

Note - This kind of workout is really difficult. Most people would quit within the first couple of weeks. Having a personal trainer to keep you motivated makes a huge difference in keeping motivated and striving for more.

Politics aside, if Rob Ford can go into the 2014 election "lean, mean and clean" he will have a lot more energy for the campaign and be able to put his best foot forward when it comes to trying and convince people he has changed his ways and is deserving of being re-elected.

Building your Dumbbell Collection

If you are looking to put on muscle then having a dumbbell collection at home is a good must-have.

Below is a photo of my personal collection of dumbbells which I use for weightlifting at home.

Also in the photo is my weightlifting gloves. They are my "Atlas" weightlifting gloves, which I sometimes also use for cycling outdoors, and also my "Copper Canyon Cycling" gloves, which are basically identical to the Atlas weightlifting gloves. It doesn't really matter what brand you buy, the gloves are there to protect your hands so you don't hurt yourself / develop painful callouses. The gloves cost about $10 to $15 and are totally worth it.

All the dumbbells shown here were purchased at Canadian Tire - they cost about $1 per pound. Thus if you are doing the math I have spent $105 + tax on my dumbbell collection. Plus an extra $30 on gloves.

Once you have your dumbbell collection, what do you do with them?

#1. Bicep Curls

This is easy. Just do 8 to 10 repetitions. Rest. Repeat 8 to 10 repetitions. Rest. Keep doing that 5 to 10 times. Doing between 40 to 100 reps of bicep curls every 2nd day (combined with a healthy balanced diet) will help you build bicep strength pretty quickly.

#2. Tricep Raises

Using one or two dumbbells lift your arms above your head and lower your the dumbbell(s) behind your head. Lift it back above your head slowly. Lower. Repeat 8 to 10 times. Rest. Repeat 5 to 10 times. Doing this exercise every 2 days will build up your tricep muscles quickly.

#3. Shoulder Raises

Using a lighter dumbbell - something you can handle more easily - hold the dumbbells at your sides and lift sideways until they are at 90 degrees. Lower slower back to your side. Repeat 10 times. Rest. Repeat the exercise 5 to 10 times. This exercise will build shoulder strength quite rapidly.

Taken together these 3 exercises will help you build strength in your arms and shoulders quite rapidly - but they should not be the only exercises you are doing. Push ups, chin ups, and sit ups are nice additions to the above 3 weightlifting exercises. The push ups will build your arms, shoulders and pecs. The chin ups will build your arms, shoulders, back and pecs. The sit ups will build your abdominal muscles.

Weightlifting Tips

Pay attention to your form. Good form avoids injury and builds muscle faster.

Stick to dumbbells you can use. If they are too heavy for you to complete all the exercises then you need to be using a lighter poundage.

Explore other exercises too, including other ways to utilize your dumbbells. Examples include the Zottman Curl, Y Press (lifting the dumbbells to make your body into a Y shape),

If you experience any severe pain stop immediately. Wait two days before weightlifting again. Excessive weightlifting can cause severe muscle fatigue - which can lead to injury and chronic pain.

Eat a protein bar or protein shake after finishing your weightlifting routine.

Eat healthy - including veggies and protein! Weightlifting without eating healthy is like buying a muscle car, but forgetting to buy gasoline. Your body needs fuel to grow muscle.

Challenge yourself. If your dumbbells feel too light, it is time to get a dumbbell that is 5 lbs heavier. Don't overdo it, but aim to challenge yourself physically.

How to Clean Boxing Gloves

Sooner or later if you are using your boxing gloves regularly they are going to start to smell pretty funky.

The quickest solution to this problem is to invest in some rubbing alcohol and some Febreze or Lysol Fabric Mist.

Using a dry cloth or a sponge, dab small amounts of the rubbing alcohol on to your boxing gloves and rub it around - inside and outside - to clean your boxing gloves. The rubbing alcohol will also kill any germs it comes in contact with - and will evaporate into the air without damaging your gloves.

Afterwards let your boxing gloves sit for 5 minutes and then spray inside and outside with the Febreze or Lysol - then rub your gloves all over again with the cloth or sponge.

Let the boxing gloves sit for half an hour, smell them to inspect for any further signs of funky sweat smells. If it smells good, no worries. If it still smells funky then you missed some spots. Repeat the process above and make sure you get the rubbing alcohol in every crack and crevice.

More Tips for Cleaning Your Boxing Gloves! (And keeping them clean!)

#1. Put them inside a plastic bag and put them in the freezer overnight - or even 1 to 2 days if you aren't planning to use your gloves any time soon. The extreme cold will kill most of the germs.

#2. If you don't have rubbing alcohol handy you can wash the gloves with brine (salt water) using a cloth or sponge.

#3. Wash with soapy water (preferably anti bacteria soap) and then dry with a towel. Let dry in a warm area (but not hot!). Make sure they are completely dry before using again.

#4. Spray inside the gloves with an Anti Bacterial Mist.

#5. When storing your boxing gloves leave them in an open container. Putting them inside a gym bag and zippering it closed is a sure way to let the bacteria grow in a closed environment.

#6. Crumble up newspaper and put the newspaper inside your boxing gloves when you are not using them. The newspaper will absorb moisture, germs and the funky smells. Replace the newspaper each time you use the gloves.

#7. Wash your hands with soap before using the gloves.

#8. NEVER use a clothing dryer to dry your boxing gloves. A hair dryer at a decent distance would be okay however.

#9. Avoid soaking your boxing gloves in water or putting them near heat sources if they are made of leather.

#10. Avoid going overboard with the anti bacterial soaps. They can damage your gloves. Just a little bit will do.

Exercising with your Cat + Yoga

Hello cat lovers in Toronto!

For fun I decided to post these cat / exercise videos I found. While not particularly instructive, they are certainly motivational and fun for anyone out there who wants to exercise and happens to have a cat laying around the house.

You can do a variety of exercises with your cat - including push ups, squats, and even yoga.

Or even weightlifting. Although I admit it really depends on how big your cat is - or whether you have multiple cats. In theory if you had two cat baskets you could lift the cat baskets like you would dumbbells. Note - The Arnold lifting cats GIF is just for amusement! Don't do that with real cats!



7 Exercises for Increasing Flexibility

Flexibility is important - especially as you get older.

Having loose, supple muscles will give you more energy on a day to day basis - and you will experience less pain thanks to your increased flexibility. As your week goes on, many people accumulate their stress and muscle fatigue in the shoulders, neck and back. Athletes commonly carry muscular stress in the hips, hamstrings, and calves - proof that anyone can get pain from muscle fatigue if they don't spend ample time keeping their muscles flexible.

Muscular tightness will drag you down, ruin your posture over time, cause you to feel clumsy and slow, and increase the risk of injury when you push yourself too hard.

Thus stretching to increase your flexibility is a critical part of any cardio or weight training regimen. Muscles fully develop with contracting (lifting) and lengthening (stretching). Unless you want short, stocky muscles, then you will need to stretch!

8 Exercises for Increasing Flexibility

1. When your muscles are warm it is time to stretch!

Stretch whenever you can. If you ran up a few flights of stairs at work, stretch your legs while sitting back at the desk. Of course, stretch thoroughly after every single workout, and be sure to include the whole body, regardless of what muscle group was worked that day.

2. Get up to stretch after every hour of sitting!

Sitting causes spinal compression, hunched shoulders, and tight legs. After every hour of sitting down, stand up to stretch for at least 1-2 minutes. Reach up, bend down, stretch forward, back and side to side.

3. Practice static stretching!

Hold stretches with no rocking or bouncing for 15-30 seconds and repeat each two to three times. Breath deeply through the nose and on every exhalation, try to lengthen the stretch a little more.

4. Take a yoga class for fun!

You can't do much better than yoga in terms of a long, deep stretching session. Plus get the benefit of a full body strength and balance workout.

5. Learn to do the splits!

Ever wanted to do the splits? Anyone can learn how to do the splits. It is actually a lot easier to learn than most people think. Men, overweight people, even the elderly can easily learn to do the splits.

6. Bufferfly stretches are fun and easy!

You probably already know how to do these. They're very easy to learn so why not do them regularly?

Daily butterfly stretches increase flexibility in your inner and outer thighs, making the splits easier.

To perform a butterfly split, sit with your knees bent and tilted out so that each knee forms a "V" to the side. Touch your feet together and place your hands on your feet to remain balanced. Pull your feet in toward your groin and hold the stretch. To deepen the stretch, extend your knees toward the ground slowly and hold the stretch for 5 to 10 seconds. Repeat 10 times daily. As the exercise becomes easier, pull your feet in closer to your groin. Your back should remain straight during this stretch.

7. Keep trying new things and keep at it!
While I must stress that you avoid any activities that might injure yourself, trying new stretches will also boost your flexibility progress over time. Use your common sense to determine which stretches work for you and which ones you would rather not do because you know you are not ready yet.

When it comes to trying new stretches you will not notice physical results quickly - stretching results always takes a lot of time - but you will feel amazing over time and that will be the biggest reward when you don't feel as much pain in your muscles and joints as you used to! It's common to think that stretching is boring but once you get into a routine you will wonder how you lived before feeling limber, with a skip in your step every day.

Realistic Exercise and Diet Resolutions for 2014

Ever made a New Years Resolution you did not keep because it was not realistic?

Here are some handy tips for keeping your diet and exercise New Years Resolutions!

#1. Make a schedule, write it down, place it somewhere you will see daily and stick to it.

#2. Make a list of realistic resolutions like the following:

Go for a walk every day for 1 hour.

Stop buying sugary drinks.

Drink green tea every day.

Take the dog for a walk twice per day.

Clean the house every Sunday morning. (Cleaning counts as exercise.)

Go to the swimming pool every Saturday as a family.

#3. The more resolutions you make, and the more realistic those resolutions are, the more likely you are to make real changes in your life. For that reason it is best to make a long list of resolutions and put the most effort into the most realistic resolutions first.

#4. Read lists of New Years Resolutions and see which ones you can do that would be realistic.

Below are some older articles about making resolutions from Cardio Trek to read:

12 Exercise New Years Resolutions

12 New Years Resolutions for the Health Conscious!

New Years Resolutions for 2013

13 Diet and Exercise Resolutions for 2013

13 New Years Resolutions for a Beach Perfect Body

Fitness Trends for 2013

Have you given up on your New Years Resolutions yet?

12 Valentines Resolutions

#5. Recognize how to determine which resolutions are unrealistic. eg. "I will exercise for an hour every day." is unrealistic because you aren't scheduling a specific time and you will probably forget easily, get distracted easily and then not do it.

#6. Remember there is no time like the present. Start exercising today. Right now is even better.

#7. Reward yourself with healthy food that is delicious.

#8. Take up sports that require very little equipment investment - buy the equipment and then schedule the time to do it. eg. Boxing Lessons, Archery Lessons, Swimming Lessons, Ice Skating Lessons.

#9. Don't let your age effect your choices of which sports you want to do. Let your physical health condition be the deciding factor. So if your doctor says you should not be doing hard cardio activities like marathon running then that should be the deciding factor. Don't make your age an excuse. Consult your doctor instead and find a realistic sport you can physically do.

#10. Pick activities and alternative activities you can do regardless of the weather. For example that way if you cannot do archery because it is raining outside then you can spend the day at an indoor tennis court and practice your backswing instead.

#11. Involve your loved ones. Take the husband, the wife, the kids, your siblings, your parents with you to do physical activities. If other people are part of your exercise schedule then they will remind you "Hey it is Sunday, time to go swimming!" A weekly family trip to the swimming pool or similar place will be fun and exercise for the whole family.

#12. Hire a personal trainer (like me!) to help get you started on the right foot.


January Weight Loss Motivational Quotes

Oprah Winfrey is a weight loss icon for millions of women in North America. For 25 years her weight loss journey was the talk of significant media buzz - especially when it came to regaining weight on her sometimes roller coaster ups and downs.

This is a problem many people (not just women) deal with. What it makes you realize over time is that fad diets are temporary and that it requires a lifestyle change to make permanent changes that stay with you. You can do it! You might lose battles, but it doesn't mean you lost the war. Never give up and you will succeed by making changes in your lifestyle.

"I finally realized that being grateful to my body was key to giving more love to myself." - Oprah Winfrey.

"The big secret in life is that there is no big secret. Whatever your goal, you can get there if you're willing to work." - Oprah Winfrey.

"If you neglect to recharge a battery, it dies. And if you run full speed ahead without stopping for water, you lose momentum to finish the race." - Oprah Winfrey.

"Getting my lifelong weight struggle under control has come from a process of treating myself as well as I treat others in every way." - Oprah Winfrey.

"There is no easy way out. If there were, I would have bought it. And believe me, it would be one of my favorite things!" - Oprah Winfrey.

"It is confidence in our bodies, minds and spirits that allows us to keep looking for new adventures, new directions to grow in, and lessons to learn -- which is what life is all about." - Oprah Winfrey.

"In every aspect of our lives we are always asking ourselves, "How am I of value? What is my worth?" Yet, I believe that worthiness is our birthright." - Oprah Winfrey.

"Partake in some of life's sweet pleasures. And yes, get comfortable with yourself." - Oprah Winfrey.

"With every experience you alone are painting your own canvas -- thought by thought, choice by choice." - Oprah Winfrey.

"Use what you have to run towards your best; that's how I now live my life." - Oprah Winfrey.

"Energy is the essence of life. Every day you decide how you're going to use it by knowing what you want and what it takes to reach that goal and by maintaining focus." - Oprah Winfrey.


Hello Toronto! Happy New Year!

All the best in 2014 from Cardio Trek!

Looking to sign up for archery lessons, boxing lessons, swimming lessons, ice skating lessons or personal training sessions? Start by emailing and lets talk fitness!


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