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So, You Want to Make Fitness a Habit

posted by Fitness Focus Trainers    |   March 7, 2019 23:13

When starting a fitness routine it can feel like there are no extra minutes to spare in your day in the first place. It can be difficult to see where you will make the time work. As a working, pregnant, mother I definitely feel you there. It comes down to this- if you don’t make the time, you won’t have the time, and you won’t reach your goals. It’s pretty black and white. So if you’re ready, really ready, let’s get started!

“The chains of habit are too weak to be felt until they are too strong to be broken.” 
–Samuel Johnson

Start small (you don’t have to jump right into some magical exercise routine, this is about a habit)

Look at your calendar and find the best place to make your minutes work, lets start there.

 

NEUROSCIENCE- HABITS

The basal ganglia is the holding place for our habits.

When you repeat something in your life it creates neuronal connections in the brain.

A lot of the time it turns into a subconscious decision, once the neuro-pathways are in place.

Start by strengthening the brain and then you will be able to strengthen the body.

Again it’s very black and white. Consistency + Repetitive Behaviors + Patience = RESULTS.

 

PURPOSE

Don’t just google how to workout and follow some random program by some fit model who has nothing to do with your life. FIND YOUR PURPOSE. WITHOUT PURPOSE THERE IS NO DRIVE! Why do you want to exercise? There are a plethora of reasons:

You want to keep up with your children
You want to get rid of diabetes altogether & get off the stupid pills
You want your sex life to flourish
You want energy for your job, increasing your chances of a raise
You want to look hot, no shame
You want your mental health to improve
You want to become a medieval fighter
You want better hand eye coordination to play better video games
You ache all the time, hating that your movement is inhibited

Start writing this down, we’re just getting started.

Once you have that in place, let’s start breaking this down. What would you need to change or improve to hit that goal or purpose? Instead of complaining to the people around you about your issues, it’s time to start taking life into your own hands and make some habits.

 

TAKE SMALL STEPS

Creating neuro-pathways in your brain takes time, that’s just a fact. So you are going to have to start with something attainable. Say 10 minutes of a home workout 3x/week. Once this becomes easy or has been in place for a couple weeks, you can add on.

Quickly on the nutrition side of things, don’t start by cutting a million things out and trying to “EAT CLEAN” all of a sudden. Start by adding in some healthy things to your routine. Proteins & healthy fats are going to keep you fuller longer, that is a good place to start. Add in protein at every meal and notice the difference it makes. You also need protein to build muscle, so if you want to tone up that’s a good place to start.


COMMITMENT

Book in time in your calendar for your workouts like a date

Leave your workout bag in the car so it’s ready to go

Track your food in a book or on an app (this is all about accountability & understanding the food going into your body)

Meal prep & make your food ahead of time (this is especially helpful for dinners at home for the family as well)

Make use of a crock pot overnight or an instant pot for quick dinners

Have a protein shake ready, for easy protein intake & to keep you from having a binge session when you get home out of hunger.

Grocery shop online if that’s an option for you. It keeps impulse buying at bay and helps you stay on track.

Don’t have binge-worthy snacks at work or in the house (get your spouse on board!). I told my husband he could have as much junk in his car or at work that he wanted; I just couldn’t handle it in the house.

 

STRENGTH VS CARDIO

Now there is no one size fits all when it comes to your fitness training.

Strength training will help you shed fat and build lean muscle tone. Getting bulky only happens if you’re set on that specifically. So the outcome is a fit look.

Cardio will help you lose weight, but you won’t have much muscle tone underneath.

So the next step is choosing how you want to look in the end result. There is no right answer; the beauty of fitness is that you get to choose your outcome.


POSITIVITY

Positive thinking is not some bull crap. Again the science on how the brain works is fascinating:

Negative Thoughts
Slow down brain coordination
Make it difficult to process thoughts or find solutions
Hinders creative ability
Decreases activity in the cerebellum
Impacts the left temporal lobe (fear factor), affecting mood, memory and impulse control
Positive Thoughts
Synapses (areas connecting neurons) increase dynamically
Increases mental productivity by improving cognition
Intensifies ability to pay attention, to focus
Improves ability to think and analyze incoming data
Improves ability to solve problems quicker and enhance creativity

 

HTTPS://METEOREDUCATION.COM/HOW-DOES-THINKING-POSITIVE-THOUGHTS-AFFECT-NEUROPLASTICITY/

When you talk to yourself going forward it’s time to change the conversation. It’s time to write some sticky notes on your mirror, find a self motivating song to play in the car on the way to work & start reading things that fill your mind with positive things. Mantras are also useful just to keep the dialogue flowing.

 

MUSIC

You know that song, the one that comes on the radio and you turn it up and it fills you with passion? If you are feeling unmotivated to do the things you have set out for your goals to happen, this is where your pump playlist comes in handy. You already have it made, in your phone and if you need to make it to the gym throw your aux cord in and get things pumped up! Make sure you have headphones for the gym or home workout as well so that you can tune into those vibes and get your body moving. Music was the only thing that got my butt in gear some days.

“Music is primal. It affects all of us, but in very personal, unique ways,” said Burdette, a neuroradiologist at Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center. “Your interaction with music is different than mine, but it’s still powerful.

HTTPS://WWW.SCIENCEDAILY.COM/RELEASES/2017/04/170412181341.HTM

It’s really important that your music SPEAKS to you.

There is even science behind how your brain reacts to music, it can be an important tool to use when it comes to creating habits in your life.

Results showed that music increases an antibody that plays an important role in immunity of the mucous system, known as immunoglobulin A, as well as natural killer cell counts, the cells that attack germs and bacteria invading the body.


Listening to and playing music can also lower levels of cortisol (the stress hormone), according to Levitin and Dr. Mona Lisa Chanda, his postgraduate research fellow.

HTTPS://WWW.MEDICALNEWSTODAY.COM/ARTICLES/258383.PHP

 

Time to write out your list!

 

REWARD & ENCOURAGE

Don’t start beating yourself with a stick to get things done. Start treating your body and mind like a child; encouraging it every step of the way. Understanding that you can change your habits should be a freeing realization!

When you complete a task or goal find something to reward yourself with (I advise against it being food, if that is something you struggled with in the first place). There are so many other ways to reward yourself. This puts the brain in a place where it will want to do the task again even if working out didn’t feel awesome the first time, it will remember the reward it was given. 

If you remember anything from your high school psych class it should be about IVAN PAVLOV and his classical conditioning experiments.

Classical conditioning can impact our lives positively or negatively.

But that doesn’t mean that we don’t have a choice in improving our lives using classical conditioning.

HTTPS://WWW.CLEVERISM.COM/CLASSICAL-CONDITIONING/

 

PERSPECTIVE

We in our western culture have the LUXURY of choosing a diet, a grocery store on every corner with every health food available, the option to go to a gym, the work hours that allow play & time management. We are in a bit of a bubble when it comes to our opportunities especially in regards to health & fitness. So take that as a bit of motivation and make use of your privilege.

STEP BY STEP
PURPOSE
GOALS- written out
STEPS
FOOD PREP
MUSIC PREP
COMMITMENT
CALENDAR
KEEP POSITIVE/ENCOURAGE
KEEP PERSPECTIVE
REPEAT even after “bad” days

When I first had my wake up moment and stepped on the scale back in 2014, I was devastated to see that I had almost hit 200lbs. Now I was very ignorant when it came to health. Zero tools were in place for nutrition and exercise. My first steps where calorie counting and dance dance on the PS3. Looking back it was the perfect place to start for me. I loved to dance and tracking gave me the opportunity to see what I was putting in my body. From there I wanted more and more, falling in love with the routine & the way my body felt after exercise. This journey has given me absolute compassion for others who are struggling with their own goals- so if you ever want some more specific help you know where to find me!

https://femaletrainer467632502.wordpress.com/2019/02/26/how-to-make-fitness-a-habit/

https://www.instagram.com/raellehousek/

 

The Benefits of Fitness and Maintaining an Active Lifestyle During Pregnancy

posted by Fitness Focus    |   February 24, 2019 10:08

The Benefits of Fitness and an Active Lifestyle During Pregnancy

There is so much information out on the internet these days and a lot of it is dated when it comes to pregnancy health & fitness. I am a personal trainer, instructor & certified in nutrition studies- as well as a mom & currently pregnant with my second child. The following is going to hopefully help you make informed decisions when it comes to your specific pregnancy health & fitness journey. ***The following is not intended to be taken as a substitute for professional medical advice. Always seek advice from a physician before starting any kind of nutrition or exercise program.

 

Raelle Housek, Personal Trainer at Fitness Focus with Team Wawryk Pro Trainers

WHY EXERCISE DURING PREGNANCY?

A healthy baby is top priority, your health is just as important BUT 

Your mental state is effected positively through exercise (and your partner will thank you)

Your aches and pain can actually find some relief through exercise

Pregnancy is exhausting for most of us, exercise helps with fatigue and sleep

Birthing a baby takes muscle, core strength and endurance

Fat gain during pregnancy can be limited and fat loss after baby will be easier

1. YOUR HEALTH

When that beautiful child comes into this world, it is going to be your responsibility to care for it 24/7; from feeding to changing and rocking to feeding… to feeding… to feeding… to feeding… you get the point. Those of you with children already know what I mean. Your health is going to need to keep up with the lack of sleep and lack of minutes you have for your own physical and nutritional state. When you take the time to exercise during your pregnancy, it gives your body the strength and endurance to keep up with your growing baby. Through all the holding, cleaning, cooking and running around you will do. I am a much better mom when I am in a good mood, have energy for life and joy to my step. My first son was very colicky, had a ton of trouble drinking my breast milk and would not breastfeed well outside the house without a fit. For a good 4-6 hours he would scream inconsolably and my partner and I would take turns holding and rocking him, giving him drops for his stomach and doing everything we could to keep him comfortable. The time I took for myself to exercise and take care of me was so coveted and gave me the drive some days to keep going.

2. MENTAL BOOST

Mood swings are not uncommon among pregnant women. Exercising on a daily basis is going to help you wade through the emotions that come and go, up and down. Endorphins are chemicals that are released in the body when we exercise which makes us FEEL GOOD; they also interact with the receptors in our brain that reduce our perception of pain. During my periods before pregnancy I felt like a storm of emotions, bulldozing it’s way through the week. The world felt like it was ending, my insecurities made their way to the surface and all I wanted to do was hide away and eat a bucket of chocolate fudge crackle ice cream. The day I took on exercise was the day all of those things faded from 100% to 20%. My week turned into maybe two bad days, and I was able to realize the feelings for what they were (a hormonal tornado) instead of reality. This bled into my first pregnancy, which naturally was full of so many hormonal ups and downs. I was full of insecurity and had a hard time dealing with the dump of hormones that would come. Taking a look back I wish I would have had this knowledge going in. After my first pregnancy I threw myself into exercise, maybe a little too vigorously, but it sure helped with my mental state throughout the hormonal changes after baby. This time around I have been able to keep a level head during those changes (alongside proper nutrition, but that I will hold for another time). There are many studies that show exercise helps with not just your hormones and emotions, but in the end managing depression and postnatal depression

http://time.com/4966319/exercise-depression-study/ 

https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2017/08/29/exercise-can-help-new-mothers-manage-postnatal-depression-study/

3. PHYSICAL BOOST

Pregnancy aches and pains are among my least favorite parts of pregnancy. My first pregnancy I didn’t move very much. I worked a desk job and was in the midst of moving into a new home. The puffy water weight was extreme, the weight gain was around 50lbs and my laboring was long. This time around I have kept up my exercise routine, my puffiness is low, but the relaxin hormone released has made my hips very loose and achy. Rolling over in bed, walking, back pain and exercising has all been effected by the pain. However I have found strengthening the muscles around the hips and stretching them out properly has given me so much relief! A lot of pregnancy aches and pain can be attributed to tight or inactive muscles pulling joints out of place. In the end exercising does not aggravate the pain, in fact it helps relieve it! Fancy that. Pair that up with a good chiropractor and massage therapist, and I have been able to continue working out even into this third trimester.

4. EXHAUSTION & EXERCISE

Ahh yes, I’m tired. The biggest issue some face for the lack of motivation to get moving. I’m not going to go on and on here, in the end moving and lifting weight is going to give your body a great sleep. It sounds simple, but it brings muscle fatigue and relieves stress. I wouldn’t recommend exercising within a couple hours before bedtime however, because of the energizing effects it has on your mind. Other factors that can effect your sleep include: nutrition, anemia and apnea; so if you think there is something else going on, I would have a chat with your doctor. If that has given you no answers, then a good nutritionist or registered deitician should be able to help you out. https://www.sleep.org/articles/exercise-affects-sleep/

5. PREGNANCY STRENGTH

When it comes time to push out that baby you are going to want everything working in your favor. Strengthening your body and core is a no brainer, it will only help when it comes time to bring that child into this world. There are so many safe ways to strengthen your body and core that I will talk about at another time.

6. WEIGHT DURING AND AFTER PREGNANCY

First of all I just want you to hear that you have lots of time, time to get back into shape, time to be healthy, time to enjoy the process. Don’t worry about getting your “body back” in record time. Taking the time to exercise and watch your eating during pregnancy will help you gain less fat and help you lose fat when you’re done. Make it easy on yourself for later. Those around you still love you regardless of your weight and if they don’t it might be time to let them go. Take things one step at a time. I’ll post a really good process on how to lose weight properly after baby in another blog. Eat good food, fuel your breastfeeding if that’s what you choose to do, and start tracking what you eat- a lot of this is being mindful of what you’re putting in your body. Lastly find something you enjoy: join a group fitness class, pick up a $20 bike off kijiji, join a dance class, invest in a great stroller for walking or join an outdoors mom & baby walk. Start there, one change at a time, it doesn’t have to happen all at once.

CONCLUSION

Pregnancy is a time to take care of your body and the baby inside.

To read more blogs like this visit https://femaletrainer467632502.wordpress.com/2019/02/21/pregnancy-fitness/

Christmas Gift Certificates

posted by Fitness Focus    |   December 20, 2016 15:43

A Gift Certificates for a gym membership makes the perfect gift, especially around Christmas. Let's face it, January is coming which means your friends and family are starting to catch the health and fitness bug.  So with the shopping days quickly counting down, knock a few names off your Christmas shopping list and grab Gift Certificate for a loved one. 

Christmas Gifts in Saskatoon.  Saskatoon Gym Membership Gift Certificates.

Gift Certificates are available year round.  They can be used to start a new membership or the value can be put towards an already existing membership, juice bar purchases and even merchandise. 

Personal Training at it's Best

posted by Fitness Focus    |   February 12, 2016 17:43

Personal Training isn't about having your work in the gym done for you, it's about learning something new or building on what you already know, from someone with experience.  You want a Personal Trainer that you can build a relationship with, so that their success is your success.

Take some time to learn about the Trainers here at Fitness Focus, the TEAM WAWRYK Pro Trainers. Their passion for fitness makes them your ultimate weapon to reaching your goals in the gym. They specialize in every aspect of fitness from weight gain, weight loss, proper nutrition, training programs, fitness competitions, psychological approaches to fitness and much more. You have nothing to lose by sitting and meeting with a trainer, consultations are a no cost way to see if a Personal Training is right for you.

Saskatoon Gym Personal Training

Through the chaos of work, raising 4 kids, coaching hockey, moving and the failing health of his father, Vince never put the dumbbells down. He entered his first bodybuilding contest in 1991. Over the past 20 years, Vince has dedicated his life to the sport. He works hard, researches information constantly, studies nutrition, he eats, eats, and eats some more. Vince is constantly tweaking his diets different training methods to be the best that he can be. His motto has always been..."compete against yourself" he tells clients "don't worry about somebody else on stage, and work towards doing better than you did the time before. If you can do that, you will learn, grow and ultimately achieve your goal." That's what Vince did; and that is how he became the 2007 Canadian National Champion of Body Building.

Saskatoon Gym Personal Training

Fitness and sport have always been a passion of mine and I feel fortunate to be able to share this passion with clients and friends at Fitness Focus. I am a firm believer in practicing what I preach and as such I am not only a trainer but also a competitive fitness athlete. My goal as your trainer is to be %100 honest with you on your progress, on what is achievable, and in our business relationship. I will continue to educate myself to provide you with the latest and most effective techniques to help you achieve your goals. Additionally I will not only help you condition your body but also your mind, to make my teaching something you can live with and enjoy.

Saskatoon Gym Personal Training

 Hard work, perseverance, motivation and determination have fuelled my passions throughout my entire life. From a very early age, I discovered an athletic ability within myself and excelled at many sports including volleyball, basketball, swimming, track and hockey. After high school however, the demands of post secondary education forced me to lose focus on sports and fitness and I came face to face with the reality of not only being uncomfortably overweight and out of shape, but also dealing with an unhealthy relationship with food. Realizing I allowed myself to lose sight of something that I was so passionate about for so long, lead me to embark on a journey that I haven’t looked back on in over ten years and ultimately lead me to a career in the fitness industry. Having been through my own experience battling weight issues and emotional eating, I know what it takes to get desired results. My goal as a personal trainer is to motivate inspire and educate others about the benefits of exercising and living a healthy lifestyle. Results do not come over night, but with patience, persistence, and consistency anyone can achieve realistic goals. I am so excited to be working with Team Wawryk and I can’t wait to get you started on the right track to reach your goals.

Saskatoon Gym Personal Training

My fitness journey started simply from one word, Competition. I was just a young boy from Cape Breton, NS with a brother 7 years older than me who was not only my role model, but a guy the fed a fire that still is burning today. 

I began lifting weights at the age of 13 in a small Olympic Powerlifting gym that was set up in a garage for $20 a month. Over the next year I developed my body, learning proper form and gaining strength which helped me excel in Basketball; that’s when I fell in love with fitness. 

After High School and numerous injuries, I realized I was not getting anywhere with sports. But, still having the competitive fire and burning desire to compete I became interested in Bodybuilding. A few friends were competing at the SABBA Provincials in 2012 and I began to follow their “cookie cut” diet without anyone knowing, so with the thought of maybe competing I pushed myself harder in the gym. After a year of building my body and dieting myself, I entered the 2013 SABBA Novice show in the newly created Men’s Physique category. I placed 4th which did not stand well with me. 

Realizing experience is what I needed to get to the next level I decided to contact Vince with Team Wawyrk and worked alongside them ever since. Gaining incredible amounts of knowledge and developing my physique from a 4th overall SABBA Novice finish to a top 4 overall CANADIAN National finish in little under 2 years. 

Since then I have become a MAGNUM Nutraceutical Sponsored athlete, started prepping for future shows, such as the Arnold Classic Invitational and CBBF 2016 Nationals; also coaching clients towards their own fitness goals, from weight loss, strength building, fitness contests, and more. 

To me, fitness is not about flexing, taking selfies and being better than the guy next to me. It’s about a passion, shared with numerous individuals, with many different goals, dreams and definitions of what fitness means to them but, at the same time trying to be the best they can be! 

I’ve made many lifelong friends, been places I never thought I could be and developed connections that will help me in my own fitness journey. 

This isn’t a part time job. It’s my health, it’s fun, it’s a community and most importantly… It’s a lifestyle!

New Gym Bags Have Finally Arrived

posted by Fitness Focus    |   October 9, 2015 17:04

FINALLY! As requested, we have received the new Fitness Focus Gym Bags and they are now available!

Dark Green Large Size Bag with front and side pockets and extendable main compartment.

NEW - Beige Medium Size Bag with front and side pockets plus two top pouches. ...
New style shirts coming soon

Gym Bags; Saskatoon Gyms; Gyms in Saskatoon; Fitness Bags; Duffel Bags; 2 week trial pass; Team Wawrym Pro Trainers; Personal Training; Affordable Childcare;

Big Thank You to Distinctive Designs in Saskatoon

Outdoor Morning Boot Camp

posted by Fitness Focus    |   August 5, 2015 15:50

Wednesday 6:00am Outdoor Boot Camp; are you up for it? Forget the gym for a day and meet Jen at River Landing for a killer workout. Boot Camps are a combination of strength training and aerobic elementswhich focus on military-style exercises and functional movements like push-ups, squats, sit-ups, body-weight resistance, sprints, stairs, hill climbing and more. 

Start your day off right with an effective workout.  Feel better all day, jump start your metabolism and get more intensity than if you trained on your own

Contact Fitness Focus if you have any questions info@fitnessfocus.ca or (306)244-6413

New Equipment for the Gym in 2015

posted by Fitness Focus    |   February 26, 2015 18:32

Members' workout requirements are always changing, which means we need to add new equipment to the gym. A must-have was a third Squat Rack, the Atlantis Half Rack. More people are starting to incorporate functional (and fundamental) exercises like deadlifts, lunges and squats into their training which necessitated us to add another Squat Rack into the weight room. In the past people would stay clear of exercises like squats because were under the impression they were only beneficial in a competition setting with the sole purpose of lifting a maximum amount of weight.  Now people are starting to realize that squats are the perfect exercise for both shaping the legs and glutes while complimenting a variety of other body parts. It's great to see people are now challenging themselves with these types of exercises.

New gym equipment added to fitness focus for 2015

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 The leg platform is a very diverse piece of equipment.  It looks very simple as it's just an adjustable step; but it would take more than your 2 hands to count the amount of exercises you can do with it. Step ups, lunges, reverse lunges, box jumps, box squats, stiff-leg deadlifts, incline push-ups, and the list goes on.  Get creative with the leg platform, it's durable and build for a serious workout.

New gym equipment added to fitness focus for 2015

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 



Most machines work front-to-back. The Helix turns tradition on its side— literally. With lateral (or side-to-side) movement, you use more muscles, which means you burn more fat than during a traditional workout– in the same amount of time.  Plus Helix’s patented motion tones your butt, core and inner/outer thighs better than old-fashioned cardio machines.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Strength Training With The Team Wawryk Personal Trainers

posted by Fitness Focus    |   December 11, 2014 19:50

Training in the gym with Team Wawryk Personal Trainers. Fitness Focus and TrustedSaskatoon.com brings you trusted tips from Chris Pylypchuk, part of the Team Wawryk Personal Training Team.  Chris has been a part of Fitness Focus for fifteen years and has been working with Team Wawryk since 2010.

Team Wawryk is ready to train you; offering a training service that is suitable for both the beginner and experienced athlete. In addition to individual training sessions, they also offer group training sessions.  They specialize in weight management, nutrition and diet planning backed by over 50 years collective experience in the gym.

Squatting With Proper Technique

posted by Fitness Focus    |   February 1, 2014 16:50

All too often in the gym many of us are performing our squats with improper technique, there are 2 causes for this.  The first and common reason is that we tend overload the weight and use more than we should causing us to sacrifice technique as well as depth on the downward part of the squat.  The second reason is that we are generally taught to limit our squatting is to lower our thighs to just below parallel rather than perform full ‘arse to grass’ squats, because it is a ‘safer alternative’. The argument for this is that a full squat places much more stress on our knees and ligaments.

While from a static anatomical standpoint, this argument is seemingly true, our body actually behaves different in a dynamic movement under load. For example, supporting structures like cartilage and ligaments work to dissipate the intensification of stress on joints. On sensing the increased load, stretch receptor cells in the joint alert the brain to increase the muscular and ligamentous stability in and around the joint capsule, thus preventing injury. 

It's not all black and white though, there are circumstances when a full squat would not be initially advised, such as people with damaged knee cartilage or post knee operation patients, also  individuals with disc bulges or spinal issues. In the majority of clients with knee issues though, it is ironically their years of half squatting, poor technique and the lack of full squatting that forms the root of their problem.

 
The Benefits

 So, if a full Range Of Motion (ROM) squat is not bad for us, what exactly are the advantages of performing such an exercise?

• Recent research has shown that full ROM squats help to strengthen the ligaments around the knees, and maintain the capsule integrity.

• Squatting through a full range of motion helps to minimise imbalances of the quadriceps muscles by forcing the muscles to work through the lower half of its movement capacity, as well as reduce imbalances between the quadriceps and hamstrings.

• It encourages optimal muscle recruitment and activation over a larger range of motion, leading to better quadriceps development.

• Deep squatting helps to activate the lower fibers of the Vastus Medialis Oblique (VMO), which serve a critical purpose of stabilizing the knee during movements like running and jumping.

• Full squatting is an instinctive movement pattern of the body, like walking or breathing. For example, perfect squatting techniques are best observed in children, who perform the exercise with ease and without instruction.

• It can help to eliminate knee pain caused by patella-femoral tracking syndrome which ironically can be caused by muscular imbalances and tight iliotibial band as a result of partial squatting.

 

Canadian Adult Fitness Tax Credit

posted by Fitness Focus    |   November 25, 2013 13:56

The cost of the Canadian Government’s plan to implement the Adult Fitness Tax Credit is stated to be much lower than the originally estimated cost researched by Fitness Industry Council of Canada. On September 25th, a report from the federal budget office was released. This report proclaimed that the implementation of an Adult Fitness Tax Credit could cost the government upwards of $268 million over five years. If the credit were implemented, it would allow Canadians to claim a non-refundable tax credit of up to $500 for eligible physical activity program costs against their taxable income at a rate of 15 per cent, or a maximum of $75 deducted from tax payable. In 2007, Fitness Industry Council of Canada (FIC) commissioned an economic report from the Centre for Spatial Economics (CSE), which outlined the potential costs of implementing the tax credit, as well as potential economic benefits that would result from its implementation. The federal budget office currently estimates that the implementation of an Adult Fitness Tax Credit could cost $268 million over five years. The 2007 CSE report estimated that it would cost government $389.5 million, which makes the government’s prediction $121.5 million less than expected. 

Based on the CSE report, the implementation of the tax credit would also create an economic benefit of $625 million over five years in net healthcare savings versus the tax loss. If both the federal and provincial governments participate, the health care savings would reach $1.1 billion by 2029. With an implemented Adult Fitness Tax Credit, the CSE report estimates the number of physically active adult Canadians would increase by almost one million people. Research consistently shows that a physically active person is more likely to have better health outcomes than a non-active person. Regular physical activity is effective in the prevention of several chronic diseases, untimely saving health care costs. Additionally, the likelihood that workers would miss work due to illnesses related to physical unfitness would decrease. During the 2011 election campaign, Prime Minister Steven Harper pledged that an Adult Fitness Tax Credit would be implemented once the budget was balanced. In March of 2013 at the House of Commons, Finance Minister Jim Flaherty updated his fiscal plan. He stated that the goal remains to balance the Canadian budget by 2015. “The lower cost estimate by the government is positive news for an Adult Fitness Tax Credit and the fitness industry. The estimated cost of the program, and the anticipated balancing of the budget, makes the possibility for an Adult Fitness Tax Credit even stronger,” says David Hardy, President of FIC. FIC is dedicated to continue lobbying the government to ensure that Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s re-election promise from April 2011 of implementing an Adult Fitness Tax Credit is completed once the budget is balanced (expected in 2015). For more information on the Adult Fitness Tax Credit or to review the CSE report, please visit http://www.adultfitnesstaxcredit.ca

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