Trainer has pas­sion to help oth­ers at­tain fit­ness goals


Cal­gary has al­ways been my home and it is where the RIPPED! pro­gram was born. When sum­mer­time comes around, how­ever, I al­ways head west to Kelowna, B.C. to our sum­mer home on Knox Moun­tain. I love spend­ing time in Kelowna. It is so re­lax­ing, peace­ful and full of beau­ti­ful scenery, trails and, of course, weather! While in B.C., I spend a lot of time teach­ing fit­ness classes and, yes, I al­ways give Kelowna a lit­tle taste of RIPPED! while I’m there. Global Fit­ness is one par­tic­u­lar Kelowna health club where I spent a lot of time dur­ing the sum­mer months and it is where I met Rene Unser, the di­rec­tor of the Global Fit­ness Depart­ment.

Unser is no stranger to ex­er­cise. She’s been in­volved in the fit­ness in­dus­try for the past 17 years and has been coach­ing ath­letes for six. Unser’s pas­sion for fit­ness started at a very young age and grow­ing up in an ac­tive family; she was al­ways in­trigued by health and well­ness. Unser grew up play­ing lots of dif­fer­ent sports and ex­celled in the sport of com­pet­i­tive softball and played vol­ley­ball for Team B.C.

At the age of 18 Unser started teach­ing fit­ness classes and that is when her love for fit­ness “turned into a pas­sion to help oth­ers achieve their fit­ness goals.”

In her late 20s, Unser found two new fit­ness pas­sions: road bik­ing and run­ning.

“I even signed up for a half iron­man nine months after pur­chas­ing my first road bike,” she says. Although she en­joyed triathlons, it wasn’t some­thing she was truly pas­sion­ate about. Her hus­band then in­tro­duced her to trail run­ning and moun­tain bik­ing, which re­ally struck a chord.

“My love for these ac­tiv­i­ties and see­ing how much they en­hanced my life, once again, mo­ti­vated me to want to help oth­ers ex­pe­ri­ence the same,” she says.

She was in­spired to start coach­ing run­ners.

Unser took coach­ing cer­ti­fi­ca­tions, com­bined it with her pre­vi­ous years of ex­pe­ri­ence in the fit­ness in­dus­try, and cre­ated her own busi­ness: P.A.C.E Sports Fit­ness. She be­came the first per­son to of­fer trail run­ning clin­ics in Kelowna and has since added the sport of of­froad run­ning.

Unser feels lucky to be able to be in­volved in both of her pas­sions: teach­ing fit­ness classes at Global Fit­ness and coach­ing through P.A.C.E Sports Fit­ness.

With all her clin­ics and teach­ing, Unser has an ex­tremely ac­tive life­style and her train­ing regime de­pends on her spe­cific goals.

“If I am train­ing for life­style, I train six to eight hours a week,” she says.

“Right now I am train­ing for an eight-day trail run­ning race and I am cur­rently train­ing 12 to 17 hours per week.”

To avoid over­train­ing, Unser uses pe­ri­odized train­ing pro­grams, cross trains, and makes sure to lis­ten to her body and take rest days.

Cross-train­ing ac­tiv­i­ties for Unser in­clude yoga, nordic ski­ing, snow­board­ing, hik­ing, rock climb­ing, strength train­ing and teach­ing a va­ri­ety of dif­fer­ent fit­ness classes at Global Fit­ness. When it comes to fuelling her body for those ex­tra-long work­outs, Unser loves fig new­tons, home­made en­ergy cook­ies, gels, bars and peanut but­ter sand­wiches.

Unser’s clin­ics at­tract a wide range of peo­ple from youths to se­niors. She also vol­un­teers with the Youth Ogo­pogo triathlon club, where she coaches eight-to 10-year-olds.

So what does a typ­i­cal work­out in­volve for the par­tic­i­pants in her clin­ics?

“De­pends in what area I am in,” says Unser. “With trail run­ning, it might in­volve a time trial, fartleks, hill climbs or long en­durance runs.”

A key ben­e­fit of trail run­ning is the fact that you are al­ways us­ing your en­tire body to sta­bi­lize, move and nav­i­gate the trails. Run­ning on trails is softer than run­ning on pave­ment, mak­ing the work­out much lower im­pact. Go­ing over un­even ter­rain and go­ing around rocks or roots chal­lenges your core and pro­pri­o­cep­tors. An­other huge ben­e­fit is the fact that many peo­ple en­joy trail run­ning as a so­cial ac­tiv­ity. We all know that when you have a buddy, or a group of bud­dies, that you are more likely to stay con­sis­tent with your work­out and there­fore have bet­ter re­sults

So what does Unser love most about her clin­ics?

“There are many ben­e­fits to trail run­ning. Hon­estly, the big­gest ben­e­fit for me is be­ing out in na­ture and the beauty the sport brings me ev­ery time I run.”

If you are in the Kelowna area and want to find out more about Unser and her amaz­ing clin­ics, con­tact her at pace­s­ports­fit­[email protected] or fit­[email protected]­al­fit­

Photos, Michael Hin­tringer

Molly Thurston, Stephanie Swais­land, Andrew Cor­co­ran and Ian Tan­ner trade the pave­ment for off-road trail runs.

Rene Unser leads off-road run­ning clin­ics in Kelowna, B.C. Trail run­ning is low im­pact and works the core.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Canada

© PressReader. All rights reserved.