Totalcoaching.ca is a great way to energize those of you who want to work out, but have no one to go over a program with you because you live in a town that doesn’t offer those services.
Elite track and field athlete David Gill, an Innu from Mashteuiatsh, started the program in an effort to curb obesity amongst Aboriginal peoples.
Gill came up with the idea while doing motivational speeches in Aboriginal communities. People would come up to him afterwards and asked him how they could make changes and get in better shape.
He was asked questions such as, “Where do I start?” and “What’s right for me?”“I was never able to provide a follow up, I didn’t have anything concrete to suggest, so I went back home to work on something that I could provide to the people that I talk to so they could be motivated and use it to make concrete changes,” Gill told the Nation.
With increasing obesity in Aboriginal communities across Canada due to inactivity, boredom and isolation, Gill feels there is no better time than the present to give people a different option.
“The need is huge in Aboriginal communities. The problem with physical activity is that a lot of people don’t have the knowledge to know exactly what to do and to be optimal in their goal-reaching process. A lot of people don’t have the facilities and coaches or the money either,” said Gill.
“With total coaching, physical activity is really accessible, really simple and cheap.”
Membership on the site, which includes tips on what to eat, a comprehensive personal profile that acts as your guide and measuring stick and access to the top professionals costs $9 a month.
Add a program like the complete cardio plan that tells you what to do to attain your goals and helps you to stay on track, costs an extra $5 a month.
After logging into the site and creating a profile, you will be asked a series of questions that include your physical makeup and goals. There is also a psychological profile that will establish if you are at a high risk of quitting.
“For example if there is someone who is over- weight who has never engaged in physical activity, his or her program would start with walking twice a week for 20 minutes. Then we build up to walking a little longer and increase the activities until that person gets into shape.”
There are no face-to-face meetings, Gill said, but for someone in Whapmagoostui or Eastmain, that would not be possible anyway.
Registration also gets you your own sports psychologist, sports therapist and other professionals to make everything as easy as a click of a mouse.
Totalcoaching.ca currently has 180 members since its April 24 launch and is looking to grow rapidly. The first month, Gill stressed, is completely free to try every aspect of the site.
The “my journal” section allows you to keep track of your progress and keep an eye on the weight you’re losing. There is also a forum where you can talk to other people about their experiences.
The “my objectives” portion lets you set goals and it lays out the percentage you must complete to attain your goal. For example, if your objective is to run or cycle the equivalent distance from Montreal to Toronto, then you can record your progress and see how far along you are each day.
You also receive “capsules” in your email on what to eat and what to avoid while you follow your regimen.
Gill is currently doing altitude training in Flagstaff, Arizona, in hopes of competing in track and field in the 2008 Olympics in Beijing, China. From there, he will be running in an 800-metre race May 26 in Oregon to open the season.
At 28, he hasn’t yet qualified for the Olympics, but he has been on the national team for three years and recently competed in the Commonwealth and University Games.
He currently trains twice a day, every day, to the tune of 150 kilometres per week.
“It’s a lot of work and it’s a full time job. When I’m not training, I’m sitting in front of the computer working on total coaching.”
For more information visit totalcoaching.ca