Back to School, Back to YOU!

Kids are back to school so many parents are ready to start focusing on their health and fitness again. It’s a great time to assess your exercise and nutrition plan and establish some goals to improve your overall health. Afterall, if we’ve learned one thing going through this global pandemic, it’s the importance of our health. 


Summer time BBQs, S’Mores by the camp-fire and ice cream treats can tend to pack on a few extra pounds over the summer encouraging many to feel ready to get back to eating super healthy and watching what they eat a little more closely. Try a few of these tips to help launch a good nutrition plan.

Cleanse Your System

Your body is pretty good at naturally cleansing, but if you’ve been indulging a bit too much this summer, providing it a bit more support can really help and make you feel great. Try a modified cleanse for a week to flush your system of any toxins or residue from a less than healthy summer season. It can be as easy as deciding to eat super clean for a few days, a week or even the entire month. You could commit to eating only fruits and veggies, reducing sugar and consuming only non-processed foods. Your body will love this!


Commit to flushing your system by drinking 100 ounces of water per day for at least a week. 

Sober September

You may have enjoyed a few more cocktails this summer than your usual routine, so let the liver recover by avoiding alcohol for a set period of time. You could decide to have only a few drinks on the weekends or commit to no alcohol throughout the entire month of September. 

80/20 Rule

Regardless of what you establish as your nutrition goals, don’t

worry about being perfect. Even if you commit to a diet that is 80% clean and healthy, that will do wonders to getting your health and fitness program back on track!


September is a great opportunity to ramp up your workout routine. Here’s a few tips.

Try a New Fitness Program

Enroll in a Barre workout, Yoga class, Dance program, Rock-climbing course or an indoor rowing class. Get excited and stimulate your body and mind by trying something different.

Register For An Upcoming Local Event

This puts purpose to your workouts and gives you a goal to focus on. Vancouver is home to the PeaceHealth AppleTree Marathon, Half & 5K in September and the Girlfriends Half, 10K & 5K in October. Rally some friends and train to cross the finish line together. 

Schedule It

Put your workouts into your calendar. Remember the saying “If your priorities don’t get put into your schedule, someone else’s priorities will get put into your schedule!” Carve the time out to focus on your health and fitness. 

Recruit a Buddy

It’s easier to stay committed when you’ve got a buddy to inspire you when you’re not feeling very motivated! That’s why Personal Training works – you HAVE to go even when you don’t feel like it!

Join a Running or Cycling Group

It’s tough to stay motivated to get your runs or rides in during the cold, dark, rainy months so join a group to keep you accountable. We are fortunate in Vancouver to have many groups including:

Be Realistic

Be sure to not over-commit yourself. If you’ve had a difficult time working out in the past, it’s in your best interest to be conservative. For example, if you decide you’re going to start exercising everyday, you may achieve this goal in the first few weeks. But, as life catches up to you, you may find yourself skipping workouts. At the end of a week, you may have only completed 3-4 workouts. 3-4 workouts is fabulous and a lot better than you were doing before. Unfortunately, setting the unrealistic goal of working out everyday may make you feel like a failure.

Be realistic. Set a goal that you know you can achieve and this will give you the momentum to continue forward. Take the same approach with nutrition. Instead of saying you’ll never indulge again, set some realistic goals. For example, you may decide you’ll only drink a glass of wine with dinner 3 nights of the week instead of 7. Or decide you’ll have 2 free days each week to allow yourself some of your favorite indulgences. Set yourself up for success. If you want to succeed, try eliminating the all-or-nothing approach. 

Remember, consistency is the key. It’s not what you do for the next month that matters, it’s whether you can stay on track for the long term!

Yours in health & fitness,
Sherri McMillan

Sherri McMillan

Sherri McMillan

Sherri McMillan, holds a master's degree in exercise physiology and has been inspiring the world to adopt a fitness lifestyle for more than 33 years. She has received numerous industry awards including 2010 CanFitPro International Presenter of the Year, 2006 IDEA Fitness Director of the Year, 1998 IDEA Personal Trainer of the Year, 1998 CanFitPro Fitness Presenter of the Year and 2005/2006 ACE Fitness Educator of the Year - Runner up. She is a fitness trainer, fitness columnist for various magazines and newspapers, author of five books and manuals including "Go For Fit - the Winning Way to Fat Loss" and "Fit over Forty" and the featured presenter in various fitness DVDs. She has presented hundreds of workshops to thousands of fitness leaders throughout Canada, Australia, Mexico, Jamaica, New Zealand, Germany, England, Spain, South America, Asia and the U.S. She is the owner of Northwest Personal Training in downtown Vancouver, the founder of WHY Racing Events & WHY Community, participates in various community fundraisers and can be found running, biking, or hiking around the community. Find more information at

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