Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Hopeful, Desperate or Stupid?

Last week I rebooted Inside Job, the 2010 documentary of the Wall St collapse that crippled the WORLD economy. My interest was not the fact America’s largest financial institutions were in collusion to defraud their own people of billions, the actions displaced over 50 MILLION people (globally) from work, smart people warned of the consequences, virtually no one was held accountable (in fact, they received massive severances and still opposed deregulation) or outside of a few 'sit in's, people essentially didn't seem motivated to demand justice.

My interest lay in a) our constant pursuit of trying to make ourselves look bigger & more significant than we actually are b) the flock of sheeple who (without diligence or question) buy / believe what we're selling and c) how many times (despite getting repeatedly burned) we continue to buy & believe snake oil from the new salesman.

Are we that hopeful, that desperate or just that stupid? 

Social media has elevated this false flat exponentially by providing everyone with the platforms needed to showcase exactly what we want people to see, think & believe 24/7. To me, this is a brilliant example of smart people making money off stupid people. Just like the Gr.8 pyramid scheme that starts with ten bucks *and yes in writing, posting  & sharing this i understand the hypocrisy. 

Vendors / institutions & people
  • don't lay false claim to things you have not or can not accomplish/ed. The world doesn't need another bullshitter, it needs authenticity across what is supposed to be leadership. Aspire to be like Warren Buffet not Jeffrey Skilling
Consumers (of all goods)
  • Do your diligence. When things sound too good to be true, they usually are.  Ask the tough questions, peel back the layers and don't simply take what you're being sold told at face value. What are these people's actual accomplishments & track records?
During these times we must avoid being hopeful, desperate & stupid and take the responsibility of being sure, diligent & smart about both what & whom we're investing our time, energy & money in and on.

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

The Six Deadly Sins of Leadership

We are sharing today's insight from great business leader Jack Welch

Being a leader is perhaps the hardest challenge any of us will ever face. No matter how long we work at it, practicing the right behaviors is a never-ending task. Knowing – and avoiding – the wrong ones is too. Thus, we offer the following six common leadership pitfalls:

1. Not Giving Self-Confidence its Due.

Self-confidence is the lifeblood of success. When people have it, they’re bold. They try new things, offer ideas, exude positive energy, and cooperate with their colleagues instead of surreptitiously attempting to bring them down. When they lack self-confidence, it’s just the opposite. People cower. They plod. And they spread negativity with every word and gesture.
But all too often leaders ignore (or neglect) this very basic fact of the human condition. Why is anyone’s guess. Perhaps they just don’t understand that it is part of their job to instill self-confidence in their people. It may even be said that it’s their first job. You cannot unleash the creative power of individuals who doubt themselves.

Fortunately, some people seem to be born with self-confidence. Others gain it from life and work experience and come to a company fully loaded. Regardless, leaders can never stop pouring self-confidence into their teams. The ways to do so are myriad. Make sure goals are challenging – but achievable. Give effusive positive feedback. Remind your direct reports of what they do right.

We’re not saying that leaders should blindly extol and exalt. People know when they’re being gamed. But good leaders work relentlessly to find ways to instill self-confidence in those around them. They know it’s the gift that never stops giving.

2. Muzzling Voice.

Perhaps the most frustrating way that leaders underperform is by over-talking. That is, they act like know-it-alls. They can tell you how the world works, what corporate is thinking, how it will backfire if you try this or that, and why you can’t possibly change the product one iota. Sometimes such blowhards get their swagger from a few positive experiences, but usually they’re just victims of their own destructive personalities.

Ultimately, the company ends up being a victim too, because know-it-alls aren’t just insufferable, they’re dangerous. They don’t listen, and that deafness makes it very hard for new ideas to get debated, expanded upon, or improved. No single person, no matter how smart, can take a business to its apex. For that, you need every voice to be heard.

3. Acting Phony.

Can you spot a phony? Of course you can – and so can your people. Indeed, if there is one widespread human capability, it is sniffing out someone who is putting on airs, pretending to be who they’re not, or just keeping their real self hidden. Yet too many leaders spend way too much time creating personas that put a wall between them and their employees. What a waste.

Because authenticity is what makes people love you. Visibly grappling with tough problems, sweating the details, laughing, and caring – those are the activities that make people respond and feel engaged with what you’re saying. Sure, some people will tell you that being mysterious grants you power as a leader. In reality, all it generates is fear. And who wants to motivate that way?

Now, obviously, authenticity is unattractive if it’s coupled with immaturity or an overdose of informality. And organizations generally don’t like people who are too emotionally unbounded – i.e. so real that all their feelings are exposed. They tend to tamp that kind of intensity down a bit. And that’s not a bad thing, as work is work and, more than at home, allows us to maintain some privacy.

But don’t let convention wring all the authenticity out of you, especially as you climb the ladder. In time, humanity always wins. Your team and bosses come to know who you are in your soul, what kind of people you attract and what kind of performance you want from everyone. Your realness will make you accessible; you will connect and you will inspire. You will lead.

4. Lacking the Guts to Differentiate.

You only have to be in business a few weeks to know that not all investment opportunities are created equal. But some leaders can’t face that reality, and so they sprinkle their resources like cheese on a pizza, a little bit everywhere.

As a result, promising growth opportunities too often don’t get the outsized infusions of cash and people they need. If they did, someone might get offended during the resource allocation process. Someone – as in the manager of a weak business or the sponsor of a dubious investment proposal.

But leaders who don’t differentiate do the most damage when it comes to people. Unwilling to deliver candid, rigorous performance reviews, they give every employee the same kind of bland, mushy, “nice job” sign-off. Then, when rewards are doled out, they give star performers little more than the laggards. Now, you can call this egalitarian approach kind, or fair – as these lousy leaders usually do – but it’s really just weakness. And when it comes to building a thriving organization where people have the chance to grow and succeed, weakness just doesn’t cut it.

5. Fixation on Results at the Expense of Values.

Everyone knows that leaders deliver. Oratory and inspiration without results equal…well, a whole lot of nothing. But leaders are committing a real dereliction of duties if all they care about are the numbers. They also have to care about how those numbers came to be. Were the right behaviors practiced? Was the company’s culture of integrity honored? Were people taken care of properly? Was the law obeyed, in both letter and spirit?
Values are a funny thing in business. Companies love to talk about them. They love to hang them up on plaques in the lobby and boast about them to potential hires and customers. But they’re meaningless if leaders don’t live and breathe them. Sometimes that can take courage. It can mean letting go of a top performer who’s a brute to his colleagues, or not promoting a star who doesn’t share her best ideas with the team. That’s hard.

And yet if you’re a leader, this is a sin you cannot squint away. When you nail your results, make sure you can also report back to a crowded room: We did this the right way, according to our values.

6. Skipping the Fun Part

What is it about celebrating that makes managers so nervous? Maybe throwing a party doesn’t seem professional, or it makes people worry that they won’t look serious to the powers that be, or that, if things get too happy in the office, people will stop working their tails off.

Whatever the reason, too many leaders don’t celebrate enough. To be clear here, we do not define celebrating as conducting one of those stilted little company-orchestrated events that everyone hates, in which the whole team is marched out to a local restaurant for an evening of forced merriment when they’d rather be home. We’re talking about sending a team to Disney World with their families, or giving each team member tickets to a show or a movie, or handing each member of the team a new iPod.

What a lost opportunity. Celebrating makes people feel like winners and creates an atmosphere of recognition and positive energy. Imagine a team winning the World Series without champagne spraying everywhere. You can’t! And yet companies win all the time and let it go without so much as a high-five.

Work is too much a part of life not to recognize the moments of achievement. Grab as many as you can. Make a big deal out of them.

That’s part of a leader’s job too – the fun part.

Monday, August 26, 2013

How Hoka OneOnes saved my fitness life

Rebecca Stewart
Kintec Fitting Expert, Kintec North Vancouver

If you’ve walked into your local Kintec recently, you’ve probably seen the new Hoka OneOne models that are gracing the shoe wall. Brightly colored, these “moon shoes” tend to be a great conversation topic with all of our fit experts. Yes, they are kind of strange looking with almost an anime character feel to them, but what is it that makes the Hoka the talk of the town with everyone from doctors to ultra-marathoners wanting to use them?

Hoka OneOne (derived from the ancient Maori language and roughly translated to "now it is time to fly) set out to design shoes with the goal of maximizing performance, control, and efficiency with every stride. Read more about their history here.
Whether you are an avid runner or a weekend warrior, trying on a pair will make you realize that this shoe really has something different. The first comment I hear when a customer looks at a Hoka is “wow that looks so big! Isn’t it heavy?” Well the Bondi B, Hoka’s pioneer road running shoe ,is designed to be 15% lighter than a traditional running shoe. Looking at the oversized midsole, this claim just doesn’t make sense! Once you pull it off the shelf you will be able to see it really is feather light!

As mentioned, Hoka One One is loosely translated to mean “time to fly.” The Bondi’s oversized midsole allow runners to feel as if they are floating on air. The midsole foam is 30% softer than a traditional runner, and with 2.5 times more midsole, the Bondi dissipates over 80% of the shock associated with running. This helps to reduce vibration fatigue, cramping to make you run further or faster. To counteract the imbalance that one would associate with the excess height, the Bondi B’s outsole platform is 25% wider to ensure balance and proper footing.

My story

8 years ago, due to a medical condition as a result of a car accident, I was no longer able to run. I grew up running and it was my passion. But the impact of pavement pounding was more than my back was able to handle. To make matters worse, I developed osteo-arthritis in my left knee 2 years ago. Yes, I’m only 30 years old. Though I had converted to trail running over the past 6 years, the impact from that was now too much for my knee to handle. I had given up on running. If you are a runner, you can only imagine what that would feel like.

Then I came across the Hoka OneOne Bondi B. Despite it’s interesting look, I listened to my fellow co-workers and tried it on. I was surprised at how incredibly light it really was. And then I started to feel the cushioning. I knew I had to try these on the road.

I purchased my first pair of Bondi Bs and hit the street that same night. I literally felt like I was running on pillows. It was a short run- 7km. I just wanted to test the claims and see what this shoe really had to offer. For the first time in 8 years, I was pain free. Not only did my knees and back feel great during my run, but post run I had no onset of soreness like I normally would have. I was sold. For the first time in 8 years I was free to run again.

I would absolutely recommend the Hoka One One Bondi B to anyone who suffers from knee or back pain, even if they aren’t a runner. Wearing my Bondis around our store for 8 hours was and still is like heaven to my feet and my back. Whether a runner or a walker, or just someone looking to pamper their feet, anything in the Hoka OneOne range gets my thumbs up.

Saturday, August 24, 2013


Having finished an event that you have been training for, you may feel run down and tired. All of the training and time put into the event may leave you feeling exhausted. We want to look at the next steps in regards to the active recovery or tapering phase of the training plan.

Active recovery can be classified as the cool-down component of the training plan. Its purpose is to help prevent muscles from cramping and stiffening up after intense exercise. During the recovery process, basic aerobic exercise following the event facilitates lactate removal. Doing light movements after an intense event also promotes pumping of the blood throughout the body and back to the heart.

Every sport and each athlete is different. Some athletes like road bikers would benefit from active recovery workouts later the same day or the following day or two. Adventure racers may find a light bike ride or walk the following day beneficial to release stress and soreness. Active recovery must be low intensity and incorporate muscle groups used during the exercise performed.

Now you don’t have to be doing marathons and trail races to do active recovery. You may have a great workout in the gym and wake up the following day tired and sore from your workout. A light workout will help you relieve soreness, reduce stiffness, and speed recovery. This way you can return to your normal exercise routine. 

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Get Smart

At a recent speaking engagement I was asked what advice I could share relating to proverbial keys to success, I offered two key words. Get Smart.

 Not without fault or areas of improvement, the recommendation for getting smart is derived from the many failures & successes we’ve achieved over two decades of business.

  1. smart thinking. Smart thinking is the ability to formulate one’s own thoughts vs. following the opinions of others. This advice is not to be mistaken for disregarding advice of those who’ve achieved the same or higher levels of success as you aspire to, rather the innate ability to think for yourself vs. following trends & fads. Following the trends & fads doesn’t put you at the front of the line and to be successful, you need to be at (or very near) the front of the line.
  2. smart decisions. Smart thinking normally leads to smart decisions. These are decisions that rely on intuition, experience & input over impulse & emotion. Impulse & emotion can adversely affect smart decisions. An example, a smart decision is to continually surround yourself with those who are as smart or smarter than you in terms of experience &/or theoretical knowledge.  Stands to reason the smarter you become, the greater the need to be in the company of those with greater success acumen.  
  3. smart investment. Smart investment spans beyond financial placement to include the investment of time, energy & focus. Given the amount of distractions and market for pushing goods, each investment should be thought out short / medium & long term prior to jumping in. We all loathe waste of time, money and energy investments, many of which could have been avoided with smart decisions and smart thinking.  
  4. smart execution. Smart execution is carefully planned, methodical and consistent through any habit, craft or task. The quote if I had 4hrs to chop down the tree, I’d take the first 3hrs to sharpen the axe is more than appropriate in describing smart execution. Many will confuse hard execution eg: hacking, sweating & laboring through a task as smart execution. The two are different and unfortunately most people are consistently inconsistent which only delays their arrival at success. 
  5. smart leadership. Smart leadership is the ability to attract, lead & empower smart followership to become smart thinking – decision making – investing – executing - leaders. Great leadership is as obvious as  leaving an organization, post or position in as good as or better standing than you found it in. Great leadership is at a premium because it relies on the values of selflessness, sacrifice and more often than not swimming against the grain in a me centric society.

The get smart advice isn’t rocket science. It can be applied  to an eight year old looking for success on a house league hockey team, a high school sophomore finding success through teenage temptations or an entry level articling student aspiring to be successful in their new job. 

We need more examples of getting smart highlighted in order to model the behavior and improve our overall quality of life and chances at success. 

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Want More Followers?

Want to see a sure-fire sign of a leadership disaster?  Try leading everybody the same way.  Fairness is one thing.  Crafting organizations with a cookie cutter is another. And if you are going to get the best out of the most, you won’t accomplish it with a one-dimensional approach.  It doesn’t work with kids; why in the world do you think it would work with young adults.

Different situations, different people, and different teams and organizations require leaders who can flex their approach. As examples, here are different situations that call for different styles or messages from leaders.

1. When followers increase or decrease their competence.

If you have a team of highly-skilled professionals with lots of experience, give them the bottom lines, deadlines and boundaries, and leave them alone.

Do that with a group of untrained or unskilled rookies, however, and you have a recipe for disaster.  You can empower them and appeal to their sense of autonomy when they know what the heck they’re doing.  In the meantime, tell them what to do and don’t apologize for it.

2.  When followers increase or decrease their commitment.

Sometimes the issue isn’t ability, but attitude.  Nobody in the realm of your influence shows up in a vacuum.  They all bring their baggage and aspirations, relationships and history with them.  And without fail, that affects short-term and long-term commitment to the task.  Add to that the stresses and uncertainties that come with business life, and you find different people with different levels of commitment.

Remember this:  Commitment is a byproduct of support and encouragement.  And that doesn’t happen behind a desk or inside a policy manual.  If commitment is low, show up.  Be there. Listen.  Encourage.  On the other hand, if you’re harnessing a team of motivated, driven world-changers, you can afford to turn ‘em loose with the right communication and clarity.

3.  When the relationship between the leader and follower(s) varies between good and poor.

Good relationships in a high-trust environment allow leaders to be more task-oriented and bottom-line.  But if the relationships are strained, a wise leader will use more people skills like empathy, encouragement, and concern.  That may mean applying different approaches to different people on the same team in order to keep them on the same team.

4.  When the work to be done varies between repetitive and non-repetitive.

Feel free to “be the boss” when the job to be done is pretty much the same as yesterday.  But when you gather a team of creative problem solvers, visionaries, or specialists, you’d better be prepared to empower, delegate, and stand back.  Nothing is more unleader-like than somebody imposing and enforcing all of their thoughts & opinions (in an authority fashion) around in a team-based environment.

5.  When the climate varies between anticipation and anxiety.

One kind of leader designs and builds the building; the other manages the situation when the building is on fire.  Vision and expectation call for people skills.  People respond to a message that inspires them, encourages them, or makes them feel important. Anxiety calls for clarity and decisive action.  It is not enough for leaders to analyze the possibilities or give everybody a hug.  Somebody has to point the way out of the burning building.

If you’re the same leader you were 10 years ago – or even 10 days ago – you may want to check to make sure people are still following.  Times change.  People change.  Situations vary.  And if you think you’re leading and nobody’s following – you’re just taking a walk.

Friday, August 16, 2013

Who Is Your Sous Chef At Home?

It certainly amazes me when I see very young kids doing things I had no idea they could do at that age! Whether it be a small chore at home such as feeding the dog, putting their dirty clothes in the hamper or getting their next diaper. This has been my experience around a just turned two year old niece. Children are truly able to absorb so much information at a young age. When it comes to enjoying the preparation of food and cooking healthy meals it really is just another opportunity for young children to keep learning. 
Check out this great article on "Cooking With School-Aged Kids" for the full vision on the vast number of skills your child is learning when you invite them in to your kitchen to be your "sous chef"! 
Measuring, math, manual dexterity, reading recipes, hygiene, cleaning and listening skills are some examples of the types of learning that occurs while preparing a healthy meal. 

For younger children, learning what colours they can put together to make a meal by choosing healthy foods will add to feeling like they are part of what you can then enjoy together as a family. 
As you can guess this will add a few extra minutes to the agenda. Make a plan and pick a night where "kids cook". This will be as rewarding for them as it is for us adults.
I recall years ago a former client saying that he was pretty sure his eleven year old son was the only Gr 6 boy leaving the house that morning calling back to his mom, "don't forget to get the oregano for dinner tonight" on his night to make dinner!
Lets keep this movement going, and you may end up with the best little sous chef you could have asked for.

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Choose your path.

Written by Willie Cromack: The Underdog Effect.  

For years poets like Robert Frost have spoken about the choices that confront us in our lives. The decisions that we must make. The fork in the road. Which path to take and why.

As media has become more accessible and more people can communicate on a moment to moment basis there is no end to the people that can point out that there will be choices. However, unfortunately less and less experts that seem clear on which route you should take.

In fact today, it is easy to see that there are forks in the road but suggesting you take one path is more of a gamble for the advisor. So many of us just point and point, showing you that you need to make a decision. There’s that fork in the road. See it. Right there. There’s another one. And another.

Thanks super coach. I have a GPS. The problem is I haven’t got a clue where I’m going.
That there happens to be a choice doesn’t make deciding what to do any easier. The awareness only serves to push us against the hard reality that we should make a choice and even if we don’t then that, in and of itself, is a choice as well. Anxiety comes next.

I am not here to support you see that there are forks in the road. There are literally thousands of computer surfing coaches and writers out there that will help us all do that.
I’m here to encourage you to follow a path. To take a step down that road and get into action. By taking a step one direction or the other you are deciding to be in control of what happens next. By engaging in your life and allowing yourself to fail brings you one step closer to the success you know you are capable of.

Today the road less traveled is actually both routes. Everybody’s waiting for someone to check it all out first and make sure it is safe. Today, the log jam of people are hanging out at the fork in the road talking to one another about how they all see the choices and congratulating each other on the fact they uncovered them. They are procrastinating. Or updating their resume. Or upgrading their skills. But few are actually just putting one foot in front of the other and living.
Take a fork in the road. Go after what you love. Be a guiding light.Be remarkable.

I’m quite convinced that at some point those forks in the road lead back to one another. But only happy people engaged in life may ever see that.

Step up. Stand out.

Monday, August 12, 2013

Advances In Bracing You May Not Know About

Incrediwear Knee Brace

By Kelsie Sedore, BSc (Kin).
Fitting Expert and Langley Store Manager.

Those of you who have had an injury and have worn a traditional brace or sleeve before know that they take time to get used to and aren’t always the easiest to wear under your clothes. Most are made of neoprene which can get hot and clingy in time. Not exactly the most ideal situation if you’re participating in the IF golf tournament or the IF adventure challenge!

Incrediwear® has come up with a new line of breathable, form-fitting sleeves that are made out of synthetic microfibre weaves, threaded with carbonized bamboo fibre (up to 78%) and germanium.

These braces are great at offering therapeutic relief for your back, knees, ankles, elbows & wrists; they can help target pain and inflammation caused by diabetes, arthritis, sprains, backache, tendonitis, swelling and other ailments.

Incrediwear Elbow/Shin Brace
Activated by body heat, the materials in Incredibraces® generate anions (negatively charged particles) that produce infrared heat to stimulate blood flow to joints and muscles.  In other words, the materials in Incrediwear products interact with the skin to increase circulation and oxygen by 75%, which in turn, help promote faster recovery from injury, reduce swelling and enhance performance. 

Unlike most neoprene braces or sleeves, the bamboo and synthetic materials are antimicrobial, resist odor and are breathable.  The 2-way stretch to the sleeves enhances the fit on your body, making them more comfortable and easy to wear on a daily basis.

The only caveat is that that because these Incrediwear products do not have any rigid materials in them, they are not designed to structurally support ligament or muscle strains and sprains.

To help to maintain the alignment of the body or join in more serious injuries, traditional bracing products may still need to be used.

Find out more here!

Wednesday, August 07, 2013

Mature injuries : another reason to let your kids PLAY.

Noted surgeon Dr. James Andrews wants to convince parents that pushing their children into year-round sports can be dangerous to the youngsters' health. 

CLEVELAND, Ohio -- James Andrews has seen enough.

Enough of coaches who mean well and try hard, but who really don't know what they need to know.
Enough of parents who think their son or daughter is the next superstar athlete and must be pushed and pushed and pushed.

Enough of youngsters who are forced to visit him and his colleagues around the nation.
Andrews has become so alarmed that he is issuing written and verbal warnings to anyone willing to read or listen. Why should the public care what Andrews thinks? Because when the "Dr." is placed in front of his name, he becomes a world-renowned orthopedic surgeon.

Andrews, who has practiced medicine for nearly 40 years, is most famous for his ability to put professional athletes back together. These athletes -- notably, a who's who of quarterbacks -- have signed contracts for a combined total well north of $1 billion after his surgeries. In 2010, Andrews was the only doctor to be named among the top 40 most powerful people in the NFL by Sports Illustrated. 

Andrews' specialties are knees, elbows and shoulders. One of his recent patients was Washington Redskins quarterback Robert Griffin III, who needed the anterior cruciate ligament and lateral collateral ligament repaired in his right knee.

The work on athletes, while important, isn't the reason Andrews collaborated with Don Yaeger, a former associate editor at Sports Illustrated, to write, "Any Given Monday: Sports Injuries and How to Prevent Them, for Athletes, Parents and Coaches -- Based on My Life in Sports Medicine." He felt compelled to write the book, then talk about it, out of fear for the younger generation.

"I started seeing a sharp increase in youth sports injuries, particularly baseball, beginning around 2000," Andrews told The Plain Dealer in a telephone interview. "I started tracking and researching, and what we've seen is a five- to sevenfold increase in injury rates in youth sports across the board. I'm trying to help these kids, given the epidemic of injuries that we're seeing. That's sort of my mission: to keep them on the playing field and out of the operating room.

"I hate to see the kids that we used to not see get hurt. ... Now they're coming in with adult, mature-type sports injuries. It's a real mess. Maybe this book will help make a dent."

"I want parents and coaches to realize the implications of putting a 12- or 13-year-old through the type of athletic work done by a 25-year-old," says Dr. James Andrews. AP file  

Tuesday, August 06, 2013

Cutting the Debt Fat!

Whenever we spend more than our income, we are overspending. For some of us, overspending can be almost unconscious -- we buy that latte from Starbucks, the latest new fashionable shirt (that has been marketed to us), and then go out to dinner without adding up the costs in our head, much less on paper. More often than not, we're not even aware of the hole we've dug ourselves into until it's too late. Too late meaning – feeling depressed, not having the ability to take care of payments, and end up trying to keep our heads above water versus saving for our future. That said, it’s time to reign in the spending and live within our means.

5 Common Reasons for Overspending

Following are five common reasons people overspend -- if you recognize any of these, see if you can weed out that behavior from your financial life. 

1. Peer pressure.  Sales & marketing is a multi-billion dollar industry that strategizes ways to market to the consumer. And guess what, many of us fall for it. In addition, many of us feel pressured by friends to spend money they don’t have. Perhaps your friends want to go grab dinner, see a movie, or buy tickets for a concert. You want to go, but you don't have the money. If you can be honest and live within your means, you'll not only prevent yourself from financial troubles, but you also may find that you've helped others have the courage to make better financial choices for themselves. 

2. Want to feel good NOW. Your life is full of stress, obligations, demands, schedules, assignments, and papers that are due. Sometimes you just want a break. You want a reward, so you buy some new clothes and enjoy a night out with your friends. You might feel better for a while -- until you get the bill. Better to treat yourself with small, affordable rewards than continue to overspend. 

3. Don't have, or ignore, a budget. If you've never set a budget for yourself, you may not have considered the benefits of tracking your spending. Picking up a coffee on the way to class each morning, spontaneously meeting a friend for a movie, or doing some late night online shopping are all activities that can add up quickly. Having a budget makes it easier to know what you can afford, and what you can’t. 

4. Keep up with neighbors and friends. Your buddy has a flat-screen TV? Your friend has a trendy new outfit? We often think we should be able to have everything our friends have, but many times we can't. While we all need rewards and treats once in a while, you'll find a lot more joy in paying for what you can afford than stressing about your upcoming credit card bill. 

5. Addictive spending. Just as people become addicted to gambling, alcohol, or cigarettes, a person can become addicted to the emotional high of spending. If you find that you are having problems with spending and debt -- if you feel like you can't control your spending or you think a lot about how you can spend money -- get help!

Overspending = Debt

Unfortunately, overspending typically leads to large amounts of debt. That debt then needs to be repaid—with interest! Consider this example:

New college graduates carry an average credit card balance of $3,000. Let's say you’re lucky—or better yet, careful—and you accumulate only $2,200 in credit card debt. Your interest rate is 18 percent and you pay the minimum amount ($40) each month on your card without any further purchases on your card. How long will it take to pay off your balance? Did you guess five years? Try 10. It will take almost 10 years to pay off the debt. Your total cost will be $4,680 (original balance of $2,200 plus $2,480 in interest).

Your best bet is to get overspending out of your life, so that you can focus on the unavoidable debt you will face in the future. Time to cut out the debt fat out of our diets!

How to Wear Orthotics in Sandals!

By Ermin Pagtakhan C. Ped.

Foot orthotic users understand the benefits of proper support and comfort, but the challenge how to wear them during warmer weather and around the house without a shoe.

Custom foot orthotics are built to each persons specific biomechanics and is implemented as part of a treatment program, which includes wearing them consistently in order to achieve the proper level of support. 

The nature of custom orthotics are truly custom and can be built and modified into specific sandals like a Birkenstock sandal. To make a custom orthotic, the first step is a 3-dimensional volumetric cast impression of the foot must be taken. A positive mold is then created from this impression. This mold is then used to create the exact specification directly onto the sandal. These modifications may include building up the arch, the metatarsal area, and even the heel to exactly what the feet require.

 A specific custom orthotic design can be made to slip into sandals that have a removable footbed/insole. Some examples of these are Naot sandals and Cambrian sandals. To do this, simply remove the existing footbed/insole from the sandal and replace it with a custom foot orthotic.              

Kintec specializes in custom-made foot orthotics and can design specific orthotics to fit into sandals as well as modifying sandals to give that custom support required. Contact or visit one ofour stores for more detail and remember that consistency is key when using custom orthotics.

Friday, August 02, 2013

A National Movement - Entrenching Healthy Habits in our Youth

The school year is just around the corner and The 60 Minute Kids Club has expanded its FREE program from BC and ON to reach across Canada! There is limited space for each province - so inquire early by visiting

The healthy challenges are in place for parents and youth to learn and be empowered to make healthy choices right from the start, giving our future generation the ultimate boost in life - being healthy! 

31.5% of Canadian children are overweight or obese - childhood obesity is a National crisis. Excess weight in childhood is linked to Type 2 Diabetes, Hypertension, poor emotional health and diminished social well-being. 

The 60 MKC allows youth to track their progress online and take part with their peers at school and in their community. Five healthy behaviours that include nutrition, sleep, screen time, activity and hydration embody an overall healthy well being for youth and parents. 

To date, the 60 Minute Kids Club has reached over 42,000 students in 155 schools, across 8 districts in BC and Ontario - while maintaining our average participation rate of 62%! 

The students are part of a fun engaging healthy challenge with their peers and are supported by their school, their caregivers and the 60 MKC team! 

Click here to see what The 60 Minute Kids Club is all about! JOIN the 60 MKC!