What is the difference between BCRPA and Can Fit Pro certification?

What is the difference between BCRPA and Can Fit Pro certification?

Over the year I have taken many certifications including; Coach Export, Canadian Fitness Knowledge, Human Kinetic, Medical Exercise Specialist, YMCA and Can Fit Pro, to name a few courses. I am now super excited to be a Pro Trainer with Can Fit Pro and to be able to get other passionate people certified and help others transform their lives.

Can Fit Pro is really well known back East but not as well known out here on the West coast. Most people that I know are certified under BCRPA and I think its just because a lot of people don’t know the difference between the different certifications available.

I want to clarify with you how BCRPA and Can Fit Pro certification work, so you will be able to choose the certification that suits your needs.

Can Fit Pro certification is run by PRO TRAINERS, like me, that are under the Can Fit Pro brand. BCRPA is a nationally recognized governing-body which works by accrediting fitness leaders who take Fitness Certification courses taught by the professional trainers of independent companies. One example of this is Body Blueprint Fitness Education, a family-owned business run by professional Personal Trainers, Group Fitness and Aqua Fitness Instructors, and health practitioners. Body Blueprint instructs the courses, training people to become certified in the fitness modality of their choice, and then BCRPA offers the certification-exams which will provide the trainer with a membership into BCRPA. Body Blueprint also offers many courses approved by canfitpro, Alberta Fitness Leader Certification Association, and others.

The biggest selling points to Can Fit Pro are;

    • it’s recognized across Canada and Internationally
    • There is a short and simple process to completion: 25 hours of in class course, plus an exam
    • An affordable cost: Early Bird member rate for FIS is $509 which includes course + books + written exam + practical exam. ZIN member can have a discount and student memberships are $58 instead of $98.
    • There are Conferences on a yearly basis, in each province in Canada, that offer great opportunities for learning and get your CEC.
    • As a member Can Fit Pro send you a magazine four times year full of useful information.
  • They are also a much larger provider of CEC programs.

BCRPA certification is broken down into several steps;

    1.  Take the Fitness Theory Course
    2. Create an Account on “The Registry”
    3. Pass BCRPA’s Fitness Theory Exam ($110)
    4. Obtain First Aid and CPR
    5. Register with BCRPA for Fitness Theory ($99)
    6. Choose Specialty Module (which would be Group Fitness) -With Body Blueprint, this course can be done online ($259) or in person ($329). however like I said BODY Blueprint requires the Fitness Theory to be taken prior to this course (prerequisites attached to this email).
    7. Complete 8 hours Practicum over time
    8. Complete Practice Exam  (ICE = Instructor Competency Evaluation)
    9. Register everything with BCRPA and become certified
TOTAL cost $823 depending with who you do the course with. As I mentioned  above; BCRPA outsources their courses to independent contractors that set their price and certain prerequisites.  Breakdown of total price: $359 (Fitness Theory optional prerequisite) + $110 (BCRPA Fitness Theory exam) + ($99 Fitness Theory registration) + $259 (Group Fitness Course)  plus ICE fee (varies)

I hope that this will help you make a  choice regarding which certification you should go with. Don’t hesitate to ask me more questions. I am looking forward to helping you on your journey to become a Fitness Instructor Specialist. For more information, make sure to check this page: https://choose2be.ca/fitness-instructor-specialist-certification/ 

A Guide to Fitness Trackers: keep track and monitor your fitness goals.

A Guide to Fitness Trackers: keep track and monitor your fitness goals.

When getting in shape, it can be challenging to keep track of and monitor your fitness goals. Luckily, modern technology has successfully created applications and wearable devices that can help you do just that! Here are a few of the many great benefits of fitness trackers:

Calorie Counting

Ask some personal trainer during a gym session where many of their clients go wrong, and their answer is often that they failed to log their nutritional intake. Many popular fitness trackers available on the market today use the caloric intake counter. Users are able to find their daily caloric needs based off their daily energy expenditure then program their devices around that number. (I am not a personal trainer that recommend calorie counting. Some of you might wonder why; not every calorie equals the same and breakdown equally inside your body. Food is more than calories, it is nutrients, vitamins, fiber, anti-oxidants and super-foods. To know more about this check out this post: https://choose2be.ca/nanaimo-food-journaling/)

Steps Tracking

This feature shows users how many steps they have taken during the day and gives them an estimate on how many calories they’ve burned within a 24-hour period. This allows users to peer into the underlying data of their daily lives and reveal areas that they can change in order to promote a healthier lifestyle.

Heart Rate Monitoring

Often one of the most overlooked features in fitness devices, heart rate monitors are a must-have for individuals looking to change their fitness standards. By keeping track of our heart rate during key movements such as exercise, walking, jogging, or even in the daily rituals we perform, we can notice various changes within our system.

Which Fitness Tracker is Right for You?

Not all trackers are created equal and you don’t need to drop hundreds of dollars to find a quality device. The research team at Reviews.com took a look at 87 different fitness trackers on the market to determine which devices have the best features.

Inspirational Person: Leigh-Ann Smith and Weight Training Athlete

Inspirational Person: Leigh-Ann Smith and Weight Training Athlete

Why do I want to feature an inspirational person in my newsletter?

I want to feature people like Leigh-Ann who have crossed my path and touched my life, inspiring me toward greatness. Too many of us fail to see greatness in ourselves. Somehow, it doesn’t seem to matter what we have achieved; we often need others to point out to us how we excel. People display “greatness” by their attitude, their lifestyle, their choices, their actions… I want to recognize the people in my life who lead by example.

How did I meet Leigh-Ann?

I’ve met Leigh-Ann while going to Can Fit Pro conference in Vancouver in December. I took the first ferry and saw someone that I knew that was with her. At first I was a bit intimidate by her beauty and strong physique but she definitely sweet talked me, lol. Often we can judge people by their appearance, thinking they are superficial, but we don’t know their story. Leigh-Ann story is amazing, she is a strong woman inside out. She is a role model and has so much to offer to other. She strikes me as a down to earth, strong, beautiful, open-minded, perseverant woman. Big congratulation to Leigh-Ann, she just became N.P.A.A. Pro in the fitness model category. Enjoy reading!

What motivates you to exercise?
When I work out, I feel this amazing sense of strength, both mentally and physically, it empowers me and helps me center myself. Being in the gym, pushing forward, gives me this natural high that I can’t seem to find anywhere else. Fitness has changed my life in so many ways. It’s enabled me to achieve goals that I could never have imagined reaching. The gym is definitely my church. I am so grateful for the fitness family that I’ve been adopted into. The support and friends that I have made in the gym, have been so positive and have always helped lift me up. I am definitely inspired to help others in return. I love it when people come up to me and let me know I have inspired them when they’ve wanted to quit! I believe that working out is eighty percent mental and twenty percent physical, it’s all in your head. If you think you can or you think you can’t, you’re absolutely right!

My favorite exercise in the gym:
That would have to be lifting free weights. I love the empowering feeling of strength I get from lifting. I find most women have the misconception that to loose weight they should do cardio. Although cardio is great! You actually burn more calories with more muscle at resting periods. Meaning, while you are sleeping, you are actually burning double the calories if you put in a solid workout before. I also believe you don’t have to look masculine with muscle. Maybe it’s just me, but I don’t think I look manly at all when competing with a shiny bikini, spray tan and the long nails. I believe you can look very feminine with having a lot of muscle as a woman. I also love incorporating hot yoga into my routine. Starting my day with an early 6:30 a.m. class really centers me and helps me stay focused so I can channel all my energy in the right direction.

My Biggest accomplishment:
The greatest achievement as of late would be receiving my N.P.A.A. Pro Card in the fitness model category. Becoming a professional bodybuilder hasn’t been easy. Doing my first competition 5 years ago in Kelowna took a lot of nerve, but I would have to tell you, I am now addicted.

What is my superpower:
Well I definitely don’t feel like I have a superpower all the time. Working out in the gym always has its ups and downs. It is what you do with those downs that defines you. It’s a lot like life in general, you have a down, you can stay down, be depressed got get back up and push yourself through it. I believe anybody can achieve their goals in the gym. We all just have to beat our own self limiting thoughts. Planting positive seeds, being proactive and telling yourself you can is ninety percent of the work in the gym. I find having a likeminded great group of positive friends is a great catalyst which helps push me through. If you have people in your life that are positive and always telling you that you can, chances are you’re going to do it. I love positive energy, I enjoy encouraging others including my eight year old son, not to give up if you want to be good at something. It takes failures to succeed in this life. So many times I’ve wanted to quit before a competition. I would have a mini meltdown but then I would remind myself of what I would tell my son. I love coming home to him seeing me with new trophies, it’s priceless. To show him that if you don’t give up, you can accomplish anything. When I’m feeling down and want to give in, he always reminds me that “no matter how hard it gets, if you want to accomplish your goals, you can’t quit!”

Favorite dish:
Well I love creating my own masterpieces in the kitchen. Since embarking on this bodybuilding adventure, I have really turned my diet around. What you eat is so important as to what you’re going to get as your striving for it. I’ve become quite the mad scientist in the kitchen. I’m big on egg whites, salmon, seeds, veggies, oatmeal and I make various dishes with all the above. I really enjoy taking a recipe and turning it into a healthy one. Pumpkin pie with an almond crust or as crazy as it sounds pizza into cauliflower crust pizza. “If it’s not green, it’s not clean!” Protein balls are always fun, quick, easy and they always get better with different twists. They are always very easy to bring with you on the go so that you don’t have to eat any of that unhealthy fast food in desperation.

Favorite Cheat:
I think when you stat leading a healthy lifestyle you really don’t crave sugars or unhealthy oils etc. When you feel so good in eating healthy you really feel the effects when you don’t eat healthy. You have to balance everything, I would say if I do cheat sometimes I love to have that sinful sushi with tempura and sauces with a glass of red wine. So yummy, but hold the white rice please. I only do brown.

Goals and dreams:
Well like I said I find eighty percent of the work in the gym is your mind. I think the rest becomes a lot easier when you find your inner strength. For that you need to work on your mind as much as your body. In 2017 I want to practice meditation more and being mindful. Do more in personal development and practice more on being centered. Outdoor adventures are great with friends, I really love being in nature, it’s such a positive feed for the body, mind and soul. I would also like to compete in April for my Pro card Elite or go to do a competition in the United States for I.F.B.B. In doing that I love helping others go through their challenges of doing their first competition. We have a great group of girls that go to these competitions together. A lot of times I feel I wouldn’t have been able to compete without them. The support I’ve received from the bodybuilding community is awesome. We are not competitive with each other, we travel together, tan, eat, etc. Our little family, helping one another and sharing big memories together in our lives.

Advice for newbies:
Make a clear goal, visualize it and know why you are doing it. Do something small everyday positive to work towards achieving that big goal! Don’t let anyone or anything get in your way. The more challenges and barriers you have to go through to get there, the sweeter the victory!

Inspirational Person: Denise Bonin and her love with running

Inspirational Person: Denise Bonin and her love with running

Why do I want to feature an inspirational person in my newsletter?

I want to feature people like Denise who have crossed my path and touched my life, inspiring me toward greatness. Too many of us fail to see greatness in ourselves. Somehow, it doesn’t seem to matter what we have achieved; we often need others to point out to us how we excel. People display “greatness” by their attitude, their lifestyle, their choices, their actions… I want to recognize the people in my life who lead by example.

How did I meet Denise?

I’ve met Denise at a Yoga class at Om Town Yoga. We soon discovered that we both taught Bootcamp and loved fitness. I’ve been following Denise on social media and I am inspired by all the running she does. She doesn’t let anything stop her and she wants to make a difference in people’s life. She teaches running clinics and helps people with all the knowledge and experience she has.

What motivates you to exercise?

I exercise for health, and because it just feels good.  If I can get outside and run or jump or ski or snowshoe or swim or whatever with friends, it is so much fun.  Sure it is exercise, but it also feels like play.  I like to play outside! I know people who get to my age, 60, or are even younger and think that they are too old to exercise or to get into better shape, but there is never a “too old” age or a “too out of shape” to do that! 

What activity/workout do you prefer?

I love to run.  I especially love to run on trails in the woods with friends.  The soft trails, the roots, the rocks, the ups, the downs; they are all challenging and makes me feel so alive. Even if I’ve run the same trail, over and over again, I still see beauty in every vista, just as I did the first time I ran it. 

Um, can I have a second favorite?  I love running on the track.  I love running fast for short distances, i.e. sprinting.  I recently joined a track club and oh my goodness, I found my people! 

What is your biggest accomplishment?

To still be running and being competitive at 60+ and to keep inspiring others to do the same. 

What is your superpower?

I can run trails, road, track and cross country.  I can pretty much run anywhere, on any surface and any distance… no, wait, I have never and will never run a marathon or anything longer!  Maybe with all these different types of running, you might think that I have an inability to make up my mind about which event I should specialize, but if I can do them all and still have fun, why shouldn’t I?  I’m just going to keep doing them all as long as I can! 

What is your favorite dish/recipe?

I love fresh locally caught, wild BC salmon (Coho, Sockeye or Spring).  I like it cooked on a BBQ or under the oven broiler with a simple marinade of olive oil and soy sauce.  Salmon is so delicious and nutritious. 

What is your cheat treat?

Some might think I love Nanaimo Bars because of my Nanaimo Bar Trail Run and sure I do, but my real downfall is bread. I love it in every format, with eggs, with cheese, with butter, with honey, etc.  Oh, wait, I mustn’t forget Cheezies and rosé wine. Yes, even athletes must indulge once in a while!

What are your goals and dreams?

I want to take people running in wonderful places all over the world.  I want to travel, to run, to tour, to eat, to drink and to share. Oh and to keep running as long as I can!

Advice for a newbie?

Just pick a sport and give it a try.  If you don’t like it, try another one.  Keep moving. Don’t think that just because you age, you have to give up! And don’t let anyone talk you out of what you really want to do! 

If you want to run, join a “learn to run clinic” at a running store or download a “learn to run program” (e.g. Sun Fun Run) and do it with a friend (that’s how I did it… best thing that ever happened to me!) and keep on running!  If you think you are too old to run, partner with someone younger: they will keep you young and you will inspire them – it works both ways! 

Denise Bonin 


Inspirational person: Kathryn Hazel stay fit at seventy

Inspirational person: Kathryn Hazel stay fit at seventy

Why do I want to feature an inspirational person in my newsletter?

I want to feature people like Kathryn who have crossed my path and touched my life, inspiring me toward greatness. Too many of us fail to see greatness in ourselves. Somehow, it doesn’t seem to matter what we have achieved; we often need others to point out to us how we excel. People display “greatness” by their attitude, their lifestyle, their choices, their actions… I want to recognize the people in my life who lead by example.

How did I meet Kathryn?

I’ve been living at Pacific Gardens Co-Housing Community for almost three years now. Kathryn lives one floor below us, she has been ever so patient with us and I am impressed by the fact that she is one of the cofounders of Co-Housing. One day we were eating together during our weekly potlucks and she was saying that she is the queen of fitness at Co-Housing. I thought cool I didn’t know that, and that means that I am then, the princess of fitness of Co-Housing, lol!  She goes to her morning classes really regularly and I admire her commitment to fitness. It’s so important and the only way to show it to people is to lead by example, so this is what I do, enjoy reading!


What motivates you to exercise?
My mother was a great example.  She was a phys ed teacher and active every day of her life, even into her-mid-80s, swimming, weight-training, golfing, and walking.  I don’t share her athletic abilities, but I love the way exercise makes me feel.  I sleep better, sing better, am more relaxed, and enjoy life more.  It baffles me that people don’t do it.(But then I don’t understand why people eat fast food. Yuck!)


What activity/workout do you prefer?
I like variety, and activities with small groups (that motivates me more) and personal instruction (because I’m a klutz and could easily injure myself if I didn’t have that).

What is your biggest accomplishment?
Hmmm.  That’s a difficult one.  I’d say helping my son deal with mental illness.

What is your superpower?
I’m not sure I know what that means.  If you mean what gives me a spiritual connection, I would say being in nature, and contemplating the mystery of life in our universe.

What is your favorite dish/recipe?
Vegetable beef stew on a cold winter’s night.

What is your cheat treat?
Hazelnut butter on an oatcake with a dab of wildberry jam.  Yum!

What are your goals and dreams?
I’m almost 70, so goals are more like dreams.  I dream of writing a book, and getting it published (I’ve already written one, non-fiction, based on my doctoral thesis, which didn’t get published, despite numerous attempts.) Being a singing semi-star and making a CD.

Advice for a newbie?
Do what is right for you in terms of exercise.  If you like yoga and walking, do that.  If you like swimming and golf, do that.  If you like going to group classes, do that.  If you like working out or running alone, do that. There’s too many fitness gurus marketing a particular form of exercise who tell you, “You must do it this way,” which is not helpful. And keep at it.  Start out slow and build it up for a period of six weeks or more, and see how you feel.  Change your exercises so you don’t get in a rut, and then quit.  Make exercise a part of your day and schedule it in just like brushing your teeth.  You will be thrilled with what a difference it makes!

And that’s it!

High Intensity Interval Training (aka HIIT)

High Intensity Interval Training (aka HIIT)

I love HIIT, which stands for High Intensity Interval Training. It’s a highly effective training method that can get you in the best shape in the least amount of time. Since I am a mom my time is limited: I don’t have 2 hours a day to devote to the gym. I now use HIIT to train and love it. Instead of taking so many rest breaks like I had been previously been doing I can do much more in less time.

allows me to be more present with the exercise I am doing and not worry about counting repetitions. Remember, when you stay in your comfort zone you don’t get the results you want. We have to get out of our comfort zone to make changes to our body. For example, if you do a cardiovascular exercise using the treadmill or the elliptical machine, it would be a good idea to switch things up. You can warm up for 5 minutes then do 30 seconds jogging, running or sprinting, then 90 seconds of fast walking. Do 5 – 10 intervals like these and then your regular stretches. That way you will burn more calories and improve your overall fitness. 

I use HIIT for strength training as well, by moving quickly between sets to work out different parts of the body. There are so many different ways of doing it but I want to share with you some of my favorite HIIT workouts. 

#1- 30 seconds on/10 seconds off 

Choose four different strength exercises. For example; squat or jump squat, push up, lunge or jump lunge and plank. Then set a timer for 30 seconds on, 10 seconds off, for 16 rounds. So you would perform each exercise in a circuit for 4 rounds total. This will take you 10 minutes. 

#2 – 20 seconds on/10 seconds off

Tabata timing is 20 seconds on, 10 seconds off for 8 rounds (a total of 4 minutes). This can be performed with the same exercise for the 8 rounds or 2 different exercises that you alternate. 

#3 – 12 seconds on/8 seconds off

This one is an-other of my favorites. You do 12 seconds of an exercise and 8 seconds harder without a pause for 3 rounds. This is a total of 1 minute per exercise. For example, a full bodyweight squat for 12 seconds to jump squat for 8 seconds and repeat for a total of three times. This interval is only a minute but so intense. 

#4 – 45 seconds on/15 seconds off

Another simple interval that can be used is 45 seconds on, 15 seconds off for 6 rounds. I usually use 2 different exercises or alternate side. For example, for step up on a chair, I would put my right leg on my chair and do 45 seconds with my right leg, take 15 seconds to quickly stretch and catch my breath, then switch leg. Repeat 3 times on each leg for a total of 6 rounds. 

I use HIIT in so many of my classes like Bootcamp, Butts &Guts and I’ve even use it in Yoga intervals using similar techniques to switch things up. Have you used them before? What is your favorite HIIT? Let me know your thoughts.