Your Life after Exercise

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Anyone who exercises regularly will joyfully tell you all about the benefits of exercise whether you want to hear it or not. As someone who falls into the active category, when someone asks me about exercise I will waste no time in telling them how much I love it, how great it feels, and why everyone needs to MOVE! It’s not because I think everyone should look a certain way, its not because I think everyone should act a certain way and I certainly don’t believe in a 1 size fits all, everyone should run, or lift, or bike, etc. It’s because I want everyone to feel as great as I do; as strong, happy, confident, and positive. I want the people I care about to have a chance at a high quality of life and one of the best ways to do that is to move your body, to sweat, to raise your heart rate, and to engage in things that help you achieve both tangible and intangible goals. Do I think exercise is a cure all for what ails you? Definitely not, but it will help.

When you think about the benefits of exercise, most people think about the big external changes like weight loss or muscle definition and we forget to think about how exercise can change us in the small, incremental ways that add up to big gains. When we only consider external benefits, we can easily get discouraged by the lack of fast results and we fail to realize that on an hourly, daily, and weekly basis, we are benefiting from consistent physical activity.

What kind of changes can you look forward to when you start a new exercise program? What are some things you need to take into account to truly appreciate your fitness journey? We all know that the DOMS (delayed onset muscle soreness) is usually inevitable after an extended period of inactivity, or after we ramp up the intensity of our workouts but how can exercise change us physiologically, psychologically, and how can exercise improve our quality of life? How can exercise affect us internally and externally? What are the short term and long term benefits of exercise?

This handy and informative timeline of your body responding to exercise will give you a more detailed look into the how but generally when you exercise you can:

  • Lower your Blood Pressure
  • Lower your Blood Sugar
  • Improve Bone Density
  • Increase your Metabolism
  • Improve your Sleep
  • Elevate your Mood and Regulate Emotions
  • Increase your Self-Confidence
  • Boost your Brain Power
  • Increase your Energy

Blood Pressure

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During exercise, your systolic blood pressure increases to keep up with the activity that is taking place, where your heart is now pumping out more blood to keep up with your oxygen usage. This rise in blood pressure is totally normal and once you go back to a resting state, your blood pressure will decrease; the faster your blood pressure decreases the healthier you are. If you’ve been in a workout class, you’ll notice some people bounce right back after a set and some people spend their rest period trying to get themselves off the ground. This process of increasing and decreasing your blood pressure leads to short term benefits like increased alertness. In the long term, it can help regulate your blood pressure so you decrease your risk of heart disease.

*if you have or are at risk of heart disease (high/low blood pressure, etc…talk to your doctor before beginning an exercise program)

Blood Sugar

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Exercise is an important factor in the prevention of and treatment of diabetes. Consistent exercise lowers your body’s sensitivity to insulin and lowers your blood sugar level. When you exercise, your body burns your reserves of sugar stored in your muscles and liver and once they use that up, your body will replenish your stores with sugar from your blood. The more intense your workout, the lower your blood sugar will go. In my experience, after a rigorous hot yoga session, I often need to get to the nearest source of sugar in order to replenish what I’ve lost. You can easily go to far so if you are someone who falls into either end of the blood sugar spectrum you should first consult with your doctor, pack a snack in your exercise bag, and monitor your blood sugar before you exercise as well as after.

In addition to lowering your blood sugar, exercise can help reduce your risk of complications from diabetes and if you are someone who is at-risk of type 2 diabetes (for example women with PCOS), exercise can help prevent you from getting it altogether; (combined with a healthy diet of course).

Improves Bone Density

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Weight bearing exercises improve bone density by forcing your body to adapt to the increased pressure by building more bone (becoming denser). You need to back up your exercise program with adequate nutrition to support this process so consuming enough calcium and vitamin D also play a key role in optimal bone health.

Increase Your Metabolism

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Metabolism is the process of turning your food into fuel and how well your metabolism works will determine how efficiently you process the calories you consume. Most of your energy is burned at rest, every organ in your body uses your metabolism to keep it functioning. Your major organs use about half of your resting energy and your digestive system and your muscles use most of the other half. Your Basal Metabolic Rate (resting rate) accounts for over 60% of your energy burned and exercise or general activity burns between 10-30%. Your Basal Metabolic Rate depends on a variety of factors like age, gender (for women-the luteal phase), genetics, and how much lean muscle you have.

Unfortunately for cardio aficionados, the calorie burn you get from hours on the treadmill is actually a less efficient means of burning calories in the long run than strength training. Building lean muscle can have a direct influence on your basal metabolic rate because your muscles use energy even when you’re sitting on the sofa. Once you step off the treadmill though, your body is pretty well done burning energy. This is because the process of building muscle causes your muscles to tear and repair; after a strength training session, when you go back to your desk, your muscles will be using your energy stores to repair themselves. This is why, when you start lifting weights, you might find your food consumption increases.

If you are trying to lose weight, strength training will give you a major boost but if you over restrict your calorie intake you can actually work against yourself, slowing down your metabolism.

Improve Your Sleep

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There are studies that show that regular exercise can improve sleep quality, can decrease insomnia and that a lack of exercise can actually induce insomnia. There are 3 main theories that explain the exercise-sleep relationship; core temperature change, reduce feelings of anxiety and depression, can reset your internal clock.

It’s no secret that many people’s mind will flip into hyper-drive when its time to lay down and get some rest, this can lead to feelings of depression and anxiety that can prevent people from falling asleep and staying asleep. Regular exercise can mitigate these symptoms through the release of endorphins which helps us think positive thoughts.

When you exercise, your body heats up, afterwards, at rest, it cools down; this process is similar to what your body does when you go to sleep. Thus your body will be triggered hen its time to wind down, to go to sleep.

Finally, studies suggest that when we are inactive, our circadian rhythm can be off, regular exercise can reset that internal clock, helping us get to sleep faster.

A lack of exercise has been linked to many factors of poor health like insomnia, stress, and the effects of ageing.

Rarely does exercise cause insomnia unless you exercise too close to bedtime since the endorphins you release after exercise pumps you up and it takes some time to settle down afterwards.

Elevates Your Mood and Regulates Emotions

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This is an easy one, exercise releases those super charged endorphins which has the power to make us happy, reduce irritability, and think positive thoughts. This is my favourite, most direct and immediate effect of exercise.

For those who may have difficulty regulating their emotions, exercise can be a powerful tool to help you deal with stressful situations in a constructive manner. Stepping away from the biochemical reactions we have to exercise, exercise can help focus your brain and provide a sense of accomplishment. Each time you make it through a workout is an accomplishment, kind of like the good feeling you get when you complete your ‘to do’ list for the day.

Exercise can help you better navigate negative emotions and stressful situations so that you react more constructively to difficult situations.

Increase your Self-Confidence

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Yesterday, I added 10 lbs to my back squat; I stared at the bar with determination, but at the same time questioning how this progression was going to feel, how many reps could I do at this weight, could I get to 10 reps, was I going to break form and hurt myself, would I have sore muscles the next day (YUP!)? I gripped the bar, got under it and lifted it off the rack, and got to work. Here is reenactment of what my brain goes through during a progression in weight: “Squat 1..ok this is heavy, Squat 2, my stance feels wrong..slight adjustment, there’s the sweet spot, Squat 3,4,5,6 I got this, Squat 7,8, this is tough, can I get 2 more? Squat 9…grunt…I can do it, Squat 10, mother of mercy…its over, I did it!

Training people is one of the most rewarding jobs because when you’ve been working with a client and they successfully do something that they weren’t able to do when they started, their joy is contagious and the victory is mutual. “That’s the first time I did 10 plank jacks without stopping” Victory! “I went from a 5lb to a 44lb Goblet squat in a year!” Victory! “I feel so great after working out with you!” VICTORY! These accomplishments help you gain confidence in the gym but that can translate to other parts of your life. When things seem hard you know it’s temporary and you can get through it. When you exercise you build physical and mental strength and determination.

Boosts Your Brain Power

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Exercise makes your blood flow stronger sending nutrients to your brain to help it do its job. If you’ve ever had a difficult situation and solved it while in downward dog or pounding the pads, you’re not alone. Exercise increases alertness and improves cognitive function. You can have brains and brawn!

Improves your Quality of Life

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If you haven’t figured it out yet, exercise has the power to greatly improve your quality of life. From preventing and treating disease, relieving symptoms of insomnia, anxiety and depression, to boosting you intellect, energy, and self-confidence; exercise is something that all able body humans should engage in. Perhaps it will require some trial and error to find a way you enjoy moving, but you owe it to yourself to get up and move consistently. Being able to exercise is a privilege and one you should not take lightly, it is a celebration of what your body can do and you should be proud of yourself for moving no matter how fast or strong you are today.

Rewiring our brains to include daily movement as a fundamental part of the day is no easy task but prioritizing our health has a tangible, long lasting, and deeply beneficial effect on our quality of life.

*MoFitness does not offer nutrition or medical advice, all information above is from research done for the purpose of this blog post and is in no way meant to replace medical advice from a doctor.

RECOVERY DAYS: Not Just For Your Muscles

What is a Recovery Day and Why is it Important?

At MoFitness, we know that you need to work hard to see results, you need to be committed to your goals and stay consistent through the process. We know that pushing your limits will create change but that you need to do it safely, progress steadily, and learn to rest when you need it. We also know that the fitness industry likes to tell you to go hard or go home, no pain no gain, and all that; and while there is a grain of truth to that, it does not mean you should be working out at maximum intensity 7 days a week and ignoring things that make you hurt.

What is the optimal weekly workout schedule?

First let’s discuss the optimal schedule for exercise; there is no one size fits all here. It will largely depend on your goals, your physical state/injuries, whether you are a beginner or advanced, and what your time constraints look like. However, the general recommendation is that you need 150 active minutes each week and that you should aim for 2-5 strength training days, and 3 cardio days per week depending on your fitness level. You should give your muscles about 48 hours of recovery, so you don’t want to do leg day 2 days in a row. Your cardio can be done on the same day as strength training and can be mixed into a strength training routine. For example, Kettlebell swings can be a cardiovascular exercise if you do enough reps to get your heart rate up. Lastly, you need 2 recovery days per week, and those days can be active recovery days or just plain old Netflix and nothing kind of days.

Why Are Recovery Days Important?

Recovery days are both mentally and physically integral to a balanced fitness regimen and overall lifestyle. Giving 110% everyday will certainly drain you, making you less likely to stick with your plan and much more likely to take extended fitness breaks to recharge. Scheduling in recovery days each week makes it much easier to get your workouts done when you know that tomorrow, you get to be a couch potato. However, you should keep your weekly workout plan somewhat fluid; if you are too sore to hit the gym, or feel overwhelmed, or burnt out; have an unscheduled rest day and appreciate every minute of it. Not only are recovery days essential but they are also supremely beneficial.

Rest Days Prevent Fatigue and Injury

If you are concerned that by taking a rest, you won’t be making gains, you could not be more wrong. Your muscles need time to rebuild. When you strength train, you create microscopic tears in your muscle tissue; the process of getting stronger is the breaking and repairing of your muscle tissue. Your muscles also use glycogen to fuel your workouts, during rest days, your muscles replenish their glycogen stores giving you more fuel for future training days. If you don’t give your muscles adequate time to recover you’ll end up over training your muscle groups which leads to injury and burnout. You are more likely to get injured if you overtrain because when your muscles are tired you are more likely to lose your form, compensate with the wrong muscles/joints or make a mistake.

Rest Days Are Mental Health Days

Sticking to a training regimen is not only physically demanding, but also mentally challenging. Maintaining the willpower to get to the gym, to do your best each time is exhausting. Some days our motivation can hit rock bottom and that is totally normal. It’s perfectly acceptable to say, “today I just can’t”. The key here is to make sure you don’t have too many “can’t” days in a row, making it a weekly habit. Motivation comes and goes, the key to success in fitness training is to be consistent with your practice. We all need days at the spa, days on the couch, days having coffee and cake with friends, and you should never feel guilty about those days. Those days keep our life balanced between our responsibilities and leisure time and make the grind worth it.

Rest Days help you Enjoy Exercise More

Forcing yourself to exercise every day will certainly lead to resentment after awhile. You’ll get bored and won’t leave yourself much time to explore new things. Rest days can free up time to discover new ways of moving that you might enjoy. Rest days also give you perspective on why you workout in the first place. After all, “absence makes the heart grow fonder”.

What Does a Recovery Day Look Like?

Recovery or Rest Days can be anything that gives your body and mind time to regenerate. Sitting on the couch watching movies is a totally acceptable rest day if that’s what you need. If you need some time in nature, taking a light hike or going for a leisurely bike ride, playing with your kids, is all a perfectly perfect way to spend your rest day.

Getting a massage? You bet!

Eating your weight in tacos? Certainly delicious, but not highly recommended.

Doing a gentle Yoga class? Absolutely. We even have a class for that! Check out Flow & Yin on Saturday at 4pm.

Laying by the pool? Yes indeed

Meditating? Most definitely!

Watching 3 seasons on Netflix and eating snacks? Yup, just maybe take some stretch breaks and snack responsibly.

You get the point. Almost anything can be a recovery day as long as it feels good and you are enjoying yourself. Sometimes active recovery is what you need and sometimes, actively avoiding movement is your main goal for the day. Either works. Personally I aim to have 1 active recovery day and 1 “lazy” day….On my lazy day I usually do groceries and some meal prepping for the week.

It’s 2022 and we are finally starting to learn that we can’t do it all, we have to give ourselves a break now and then and not feel guilty about it. Because “time you enjoy wasting is not time wasted”. -John Lennon.

5 Steps to Getting Back on Track

The end of 2021 has come and gone but with Omicron throwing us head first into another gym lockdown, many of you may have scrapped your plans to getting fit in 2022. Maybe you need to get back on the fitness wagon or your present fitness routine feels just blah and you need to shake things up to stay motivated. Whatever your situation may be, here are 5 steps to take before you jump head first into something new.

Step 1: Find Your Why?

What’s your internal motivation? All too often we focus on external motivators like weight loss for appearance or to make someone else happy; but if you want to start a fitness plan that works for you and makes YOU happy, you need to identify your fundamental reason for being active.

What internally motivates you to move your body and seek a healthier, active lifestyle? For example: do you want to feel stronger, more confident, and energetic? Do you want to relieve aches and pains that come from leading a sedentary lifestyle? Or are you an avid endorphin chaser that has hit a wall and wants to make a change?

External motivators won’t keep you motivated for long because more often than not, goals like weight loss are too subjective and depend on a variety of other factors such as nutrition, sleep, stress, hormones, and much more. When we fail to attain these goals we get demotivated. However, once you find the root reason for being active and feel it working (energy, strength, mood elevation) you’ll be more likely to stick with your fitness goals.

Step 2: Baby Steps

You may have lofty goals but trying to overhaul your entire lifestyle (exercise, nutrition, sleep, water intake, etc) all at once will most likely leave you overwhelmed, drained and defeated. Start with what you can reasonably manage and add on from there. If you currently don’t exercise at all, eat a diet of processed foods and have a low water intake you shouldn’t start by buying a fridge full of whole foods, plan a 4 day a week gym routine and try to drink 2 L of water daily all at the same time. Try adding 2- 30 min walks to your week and cooking a healthy meal 1-2 times per week. Real, sustainable, and healthy change takes time because the outcome is to become more intuitively healthy for life. If you’re stressed about getting everything right from the get go; you’re more likely to fall short of your goals, feel like a failure and give up.

Ask yourself on a scale of 1-10, how likely are you to stick with a goal (Ex. Exercising 3 times/week) if the answer is less than 8 out of 10, you will most certainly not meet your goal. Adjust your goal until your answer is 8 or higher and you will most likely succeed.

Step 3: Don’t Overcommit

If committing to an hour long session at the gym or Bootcamp class feels daunting, then start with 20 minutes a few times a week. Some studios offer 30 minute classes, or you could work with a trainer to write you a 30 minute workout program. Heading out for a 20 minute bike ride or walk is better than doing 0 minutes and you will feel much better physically and mentally for having moved your body. You can gradually work your way up to the recommended 150 minutes of weekly activity.

On the other end of the spectrum, if you feel like the only way you will commit to a fitness routine is to make it official, look for a 6 week training program that takes into account your fitness level, your personal goals, and keeps you accountable. 6 weeks is better than 30 day programs as the slightly longer set up is more sustainable than trying to do it all in 30 days and will help you build better habits over time.

Step 4: Recovery is Essential

Often when people jump into a new fitness regimen, they have an all or nothing mentality; this mentality is certainly fed by the fitness industry telling you that to be fit you have to be 110% committed. This mindset can lead people into dangerous territory, particularly when it comes to over training. Rest days, and active recovery are just as essential to your training program as your gym days. Cool down, stretching and recovery help your body heal and ultimately get faster and stronger more efficiently. Recovery looks like stretching, yin yoga, taking a walk, getting a massage, stretching, meditation, gardening, etc. Your body and your mind will benefit from these recovery activities, giving you time to enjoy other things which creates a more balanced lifestyle.

Step 5: Find What you Love!

Getting to the gym is half the battle; if you hate running on the treadmill and find yourself dreading it then DON’T run on the treadmill! If you absolutely abhor gyms, cardio machines and lifting weights then by all means abstain from doing these activities. The most important thing you can do to maintain an active and healthy lifestyle is to find an activity that makes you happy. Go hiking, skiing, skating, biking, rock climbing, or dancing. Join a soccer league or learn a new sport. If nothing truly interests you, don’t underestimate the power of a workout bud to make the gym or a fitness classes more interesting. Most importantly, keep an open mind; just because your high school gym teacher made you run beep tests and you hated it doesn’t mean you won’t like running now. Or you might think yoga is for hippies, cross training is for bros and biking requires far too much spandex, but you’ll never know what you enjoy most unless you get out there, lay down your heart and give it a go!

***Depending on your situation, you may want to get a doctors clearance before you start exercising and its always good to consult a professional trainer to ensure you are setting out on the right path.

8 Reasons Why it’s Better to Workout with a Friend or a Group.

Over the past 2 years we’ve seen people drop off the fitness wagon soon after the gyms shut down and reemerge in Spring feeling tired and weak but motivated to move their bodies.  Why was it so hard to stick to a fitness routine from your living room? Pandemic stressors aside, for most of us, it’s simply not motivating to workout in isolation when the only person cheering you on is yourself.  I’d rather eat ice cream and watch Netflix than perform yet another bodyweight squat in my living room.

Let’s examine 8 reasons why it’s better to workout with others.

  1.  It’s WAY more fun

In addition to the jokes, laughter, and the high fives, you can also do super fun partner exercises like partner ball slams and high five planks! You actually release more endorphins when you workout with a group because you are having positive social interactions with others.

  1. Accountability and Commitment

Working out with a friend or a small group means you are more likely to show up for your workout.  It’s harder to make a commitment to yourself than if someone is waiting for you at the gym.  

  1.  Shared Agony

After a particularly grueling workout, you can commiserate together over a post workout smoothie, coffee, or beer (no judgement).  Having a friend to talk about the challenges and triumphs of a workout is half the fun!

  1.  Reduces Stress

According to this study, working out with a buddy or in a group reduces stress levels by 26% compared to working alone.  This is likely attributed to all the laughing and smiling you do when working out with others.

  1. More Motivating and Adventurous

Watching others power through a workout on days when you’d rather snooze on your mat, helps motivate you to get to their level.  You’ll feed off the energy in the room, making you work harder than you would if you had to face your treadmill alone. You’ll benefit from others cheering you on when you just want to give up and you’ll be more adventurous seeing others try new things.

  1. More Likely to Succeed

Whatever your personal goal is, whether it’s simply to establish a fitness routine, to build muscle, or perform a pullup; you are more likely to succeed when you workout with someone else.  Due to the accountability and commitment factor, simply showing up is half the battle; when you don’t show up, you don’t make strides.  You’ll also have someone to celebrate your successes with, even when you don’t notice them yourself!

  1.  You Always Have a Spotter

Maybe you don’t have a friend that you can workout with because your schedules don’t match or your friends aren’t interested in fitness.  Finding a group class or small group training program that motivates you can help you build relationships with those that share similar goals and lifestyles as you.  The healthy actions of others can rub off on you.  Working out in a group means there is always someone around to spot you, to help you out if you’re not sure how to use a machine, or to teach you something new and fun.

  1. A Break from Reality

When our days are filled with responsibilities; work, school, kids, errands, family, etc; working out can feel like another item on your ‘To Do List’.  When you look forward to meeting up with your workout buddy or group, it can feel like a well deserved break from reality.  During that 1 hour sweat session, you’ll laugh, commiserate, sweat, groan, and chat with others who have little or nothing to do with your ‘real world” life.

We’ve looked at the benefits of working out with a friend or in a group.  But are there any drawbacks?  Of course, but there are also solutions!

When you work out in a large group setting there is often an assumed fitness level.  Meaning, it is assumed that everyone can perform proper squats, lunges, pushups, etc.  Hiring a trainer can remove this danger, however many people cannot afford this luxury.  That’s why we (Studio MoFitness) developed a Small Group Training Program where you can reap the benefits of working with a trainer but share the cost with a group so you may also experience those super charged group exercise endorphins!

Send us a message to find out more about our Small Group Training Program starting January, 2021 and our Early Bird Discount!

STUDIO MO FITNESS MTL

We are over the moon excited about this new development with our small fitness business. Sometimes good things really do come to those who wait, just don’t wait passively! We’ve been keeping our ears to the ground, looking for a studio and we lucked out last weekend! The studio is located at 2023 Decarie Blvd (formerly Happy Tree Yoga), within a 2 minute walk to Vendome metro, close to the Super Hospital and easily walkable from lower and upper NDG as well as Westmount.

We will offer Personal training, small group training and workshops. The studio will also be available to rent to other trainers, yoga instructors, for events, workshops, etc… Contact Us for rates and availability!

Stay tuned for Early Bird Promotions for our classes and personal training!

SWEAT In The Park!


What : Group Fitness (HIIT, Cardio Kickboxing, Abs and Glutes, Bootcamp)

Where : Parc Georges Saint Pierre (Upper Lachine/Oxford)

When : Tuesday and Thursday 6-7pm, Saturday 9:45-10:45 am


Price : 5$ Trial Class 10$ Single Class 5 Card Class 45$ (40$ each if you buy with a friend/partner/family) 10 class card 85$ (80$ each if you buy with a friend/partner/family)

***As we don’t have the reservation system set up yet, we will take bookings for Tuesday via email (mofitnessmtl@gmail.com) and you can send us the payment via etransfer. Once we receive payment we will send you a confirmation! Choose your package and send us your full name and phone number in the email. You must cancel at least 3 hours in advance to avoid losing your class or to get a refund (single class).

Rules

You must bring your own mat or towel; we will not be lending mats.

Don’t forget a water bottle as the park fountains are not open.

Spaces are limited due to Social Distancing obligations.

We are capping the groups at 10 people.

Reserve your spot in advance to ensure you get a place.

We encourage you to bring your own dumbbells so we can avoid equipment sharing as much as possible, but we will have equipment to use if you don’t have any dumbbells.

All equipment will be disinfected before and after the class, and all participants will be required to sanitize their hands before and after the class.

Cones will be set up to show you where to put your mat, you must stay in that space, away from other participants.

If you are feeling unwell in anyway then you must not attend class.

If you need to cancel, you must do so at least 3 hours in advance or be charged for the class.

If you have an injury or limitation, please let us know in advance so we can modify exercises accordingly.

* Failure to respect social distancing rules will result in a verbal warning and you may be asked to leave class and not be permitted to return.

If you would like to arrange your own group fitness class in a different park or at a different time, please contact us and we can arrange something for you!

Music By : http://www.bensound.com

Family Fitness NDG

Starting June 4thI will be running a twice weekly (Tuesday and Sunday) fitness class in NDG Park (Girouard/Sherbrooke) near Vendome Metro. I call it Family Fitness because I am encouraging families to get outside to be active together, however, the classes are for everyone.  There are so many obstacles to people who are trying to start or maintain an active lifestyle, so with Mo Fitness, I am removing those barriers by offering fun, accessible, family friendly and affordable fitness classes.  Parents are hard pressed to leave their kids at the end of a long work day or even on the weekends to exercise so I want to encourage you to bring your children, your partners, your families, and your friends! I also understand that committing to a monthly gym membership or paying the drop in rates at many gyms is not realistic for many people, especially families, that is why we created a reasonable price structure depending on your level of commitment and what you can afford; our prices are pretty unbeatable, especially if you bring someone along!

Below I have answered a few common questions but if you have additional questions or concerns, please feel free to email me: mofitnessmtl@gmail.com

How can you work out with children around?

If your children are old enough they can work out with you or go play in the park-even making new friends with the other kids in attendance.  The workout will mainly be done in tandem which means you will be paired up with someone, one person will work and one person will do active rest that way someone can always keep an eye on the children.  My daughter is 4 months old so she will be hanging out in her car seat or on the mat, you can always do a few squats with your baby!  My wife takes our baby to exercise classes with her and sometimes she has to finish early because our daughter starts to get upset but my wife says that even if she only gets to do 20 minutes; it’s still 20 minutes more than she would have done had she stayed home!  You may be worried that your baby won’t even last 20 minutes and while that may be true for some, you may be surprised at how the music and movement keep your little one stimulated, especially outside with so many things to see! 

The main rule for bringing children to the class is that they are your responsibility.  You must make sure your child understands that they should not run around inside the exercise zone as they may cause injury to themselves or someone else. Bring a few toys to keep them entertained and make a space for them that they should stay in or stay next to you at all times.

What type of exercise class is it?  What is the structure of the class?

I will usually start the class by leading an aerobic cardio warm up which can include anything from jumping jacks, cardio boxing, butt kicks and high knees but could also include skipping rope, light jogging, or walking.  If you have any injuries, we can accommodate you, for example; my wife can’t run on uneven ground because of an ankle injury so instead she runs stairs or skips rope. After the warm up we will move into a circuit and/or HIIT style workout which will combine strength, mobility, and endurance.  Finally, we will end the class by stretching out all the muscles we worked.  If you are feeling especially tight in a specific area, then you could ask for a special stretch to work out the tightness. 

What if I am really out of shape, have mobility issues, have never exercised before, am nervous to try the class, etc….?

The purpose of this class is to get outside and be active with your family, friends, and meet people in the neighbourhood.  This class is excellent for beginners as you will be able to work out at your level and we will make sure that you see how many exercises can be modified to suit your level.  For example; there are many ways to do a push up and even if you re the only person doing a beginner push up-no one is judging you, we all had to start somewhere.  

If you are nervous about the class then please send me an email/message and I can talk you through any of your reservations, you could also come a bit early to get oriented with the space and equipment while I set up!  

If you have mobility issues, then please let me know at the beginning of class or if you are uncomfortable with an exercise than you can ask me for a modification or different exercise to do.  Don’t be afraid to change an exercise for yourself if you know you can’t do something.  Let’s say you can’t do Russian twists, then try another core exercise like simple crunches or ask me for an idea!

What do I need to wear/bring?

You need to be in active wear, t shirt and shorts, leggings and a tank top, jogging pants and a long sleeve shirt, you don’t have to wear expensive exercise clothing; just as long as you can move comfortably in your clothes.  I will recommend that you wear proper trainers-especially if you are a beginner- if you are accustomed to training barefoot then you’re welcome to but keep in mind that we will be training outside in a public park.  Bring your own mat or towel to do ground work (crunches, etc…) bring a hand towel to wipe sweat out of your face, and bring a water bottle so you don’t get dehydrated.  If you have children with you then bring water, snacks, toys, etc for your children.  We will have some equipment but if you like a certain weight, have your own boxing gloves, or like to use yoga blocks, straps, etc then feel free to bring those along!

In Case of Rain:

We will still work out in the rain as long as it’s not really heavy rain.  Usually heavy rain doesn’t last long so we may simply seek shelter and restart once it finishes.

Stay up to date with announcements on our facebook group: Family Fit NDG.

When we make something a priority, it becomes easier to include in our life!  Hope to see you all soon!