The New Year

Jan 1, 2017 Eric Toussaint 6 Comments

What will you be thinking about when Auld Lang Syne is playing? I should frame this a little more particularly, I am referring to your health and fitness in the past year…this is not me trying to be Tony Robbins.

I myself have had ups and downs in 2016. I was able to focus for better or worse on a lot of weight lifting à la bodybuilding. To the point that I was contemplating entering a contest/show. This style of lifting however does come with a cost. It is all consuming, very painstaking and the rewards comes slowly. You cardio suffers, your flexibility and speed as well. But boy do you love looking in the mirror, it becomes very narcissistic.

That being said my martial arts training very much fell by the wayside, but not only due to bodybuilding. I have been having foot issues, more specifically – Morton’s Neuromas. This led to surgeries in each of my feet. The second round of surgeries will be January the 13, 2017 (yes I need two surgeries in each foot). This for all intents and purposes has brought me to a complete halt. I have only recently gone from using the upper body cycle (UBC) to recumbent elliptical and I swim when I can.

The last time I lifted was Thursday November the 17, 2016. For those that bodybuild you know thats enough to put you into absolute freakout mode. Fortunately I have vacillated from aerobic to anaerobic training so many times over the years it doesn’t really bother me and it actually sets me up for the New Year.

My plan for the New Year, although due to my next surgery really won’t go fully into effect until Spring will be focused on cardio, flexibility, speed and martial arts. I will also try my hand at grappling as well to compliment my Kung Fu training. My strength training will be greatly reduced most likely two days a week.

I am looking forward to this change of pace and programming, and pushing the limit with my new focus for 2017.

Diet Time Now!!!

Dec 31, 2016 Eric Toussaint 6 Comments

The New Year is here and the time for diet draws nigh!! I must admit with my greatly reduced mobility (thank you foot surgeries) mixed with holiday vacations and all the food and good cheer that come with I have been struggling to maintain my schoolboy physique.

I am up about ten pounds and since I have not lifted weights in six weeks (again thank you foot surgeries) I am losing muscle mass rapidly. I don’t mind the ego hit that comes with the muscle loss but muscle mass burns calories (one pound of muscle burns about 40 calories a day).

I have had some success with the upper body cycle and the recumbent elliptical. I have struggled with getting to the pool for lap swimming; I just need to buckle down and make it happen.

That being said, it’s time to address diet. I have been sucked into holiday mode and have quite frankly been eating horribly. I think partially due to the fact that with my reduced level of activity I’m not mentally as focused on diet and exercise as much. This morning I upgraded to a premium membership on my LoseIt app and will be using it everyday until I reach my goal weight.

I am still trying to figure out what my goal weight should be, I have been as heavy as 200 hundred pounds when really lifting heavy and as light as 164 pounds when really pushing the mountain biking and triathlete pursuits. My focus in the New Year will be martial arts and general endurance. This course of action of course is best helped by staying lean and mean, most likely I’ll shoot for 165 pounds.

My time will be split between lots of cardio with an emphasis on interval training, some weight lifting (most likely only two days a week) and martial arts training.

The main thing to remember for myself and anyone else reading this is simple…there is no exercise regimen that can outperform a bad diet. So even though my exercise regimen will change, my real focus will be on using the LoseIt app and really watching what I eat. Otherwise I will not hit my goal weight. I hope to hit my goal by March at the latest. My starting weight is 179 pounds.

I’ll keep you posted…

Staying Focused On Your Physical Fitness While Injured

Dec 20, 2016 Eric Toussaint 6 Comments

How do you keep your focus on physical fitness while you are injured? It is an issue I am wrestling with currently. I am preparing for my second round of surgeries on my feet (yes both feet) in January.

I have been literally trying to keep my steps to a minimum to heal as fast as possible and avoid possible scar tissue and nerve damage (a possibility if I don’t ease back into my everyday routine). I keep a fold up tripod stool with me that I sit on whenever possible while at work and recently got a temporary handicap placard for my car. The handicap placard is somewhat helpful; but his humbling experience has also led me to the sad conclusion that the Bethesda area is really not very accommodating for those with disabilities, especially for longterm parking.

Some much energy is spent trying to not move and taking extra time for every task because of my naturally slower approach to everything that it’s hard to get motivated to workout. I started with using an upper body cycle and in just the past ten days or so I have started using a recumbent elliptical. It feels pretty good but of course it is harder to burn calories in a recumbent position.

I have been trying to eat less to not gain weight, my muscle mass due to not lifting weights is being affected, which is a little bit of vanity hit but there is a upside. I will be going back into martial arts full force once this is all over (hopefully April, 2017) and being lighter is a good thing for speed and agility. I will also be focusing on a lot of stretching and I have promised my self to try my hand at some grappling training.

All that being said, as mention it is a struggle to stay motivated and it is a little depressing to be so immobilized. However I am enjoying reading more and catching up on some Netflix viewing. I am doing my best to stay upbeat and have also been doing research for how I want to structure my eventual return to the physical.

Keep me in your thoughts and if you can move do it…you may not alway be able to one day!!

Training With Injuries

Dec 5, 2016 Eric Toussaint 6 Comments

If you have been in the game as long as I have you are invariably going to sustain some type of injury, be it from life, training, age, wear and tear or all of the above.

So what to do when injured, the last thing would be to do nothing. There is always a way to exercise and stay in shape. Figure out your do’s and don’ts and plan accordingly.

Recently I had surgery on my feet and my exercise regimen has been pretty severely curtailed. However as I said there is always a way; I have been using the upper body cycle (UBC), swimming and of course abdominal/midsection work.

You would be amazed at what just the UBC, swimming and ab work can do. I am getting great workouts while being completely off my feet.

Generally for the UBC I’ll go for forty-five minutes to and hour alternating between going forwards and backward. At the pool I alternate between distance and sprint work. As to my ab work, any type of crunch or sit up you can think of in positions that keep all weight off my feet.

My mission is to lose ten pounds with these work outs and push hard to up my cardiovascular fitness. I want to be as lean and mean as possible when I return to my martial arts training.

Thats the current plan, I’ll let you know how it works out

What are your Summer Goals?

Jun 15, 2016 Eric Toussaint 6 Comments

If you have been keeping up with my blog posts, you’ll have hopefully picked your Summer Plan by now, if not quickly read the last post –

So now that you have picked your Summer Plan; what are your summer goals? What do I mean by this exactly? Let’s say you picked rock climbing, do you have a spot picked out to practice be it indoors or outdoors? Do you have a schedule and routine to keep you on track? Is there any equipment that you need to purchase? Is there a book or magazine that may help hone your skills? Are there lessons or coaching that you can take?

I’m a fan of immersing myself in my activities and learning as much about them as possible, and to practice them as much as possible to get results and achieve success. If you take this approach you certainly will move forward in your pursuits. You will also find that you have built in “mandatory” leisure time, which we all need in our desperately busy world while becoming more healthy all at the same time.

I have two goals for this Summer:

1. Bench – 225lb.
Squat – 3151b.

2. Pass another belt test at my martial arts school –

Please let me know what your goals are and if I can help you to achieve them.

Summer Plan

Jun 9, 2016 Eric Toussaint 6 Comments

Do you have your summer exercise plan together?!

Here are some outdoor and indoor activities for you to consider and links to further your potential pursuits (it’s always a good idea to have indoor options available with the heat, humidity and air quality of the Washington Metropolitan Area).


Tennis – No Limits Tennis email –

Horseback Riding –

Running –

Cycling –

Swimming –

Hiking –

Kayaking –

Rock Climbing –


Spinning –!bethesda-md/cfbd

Yoga –

Pilates –

Rock Climbing –

Martial Arts –

Crossfit –

Please feel free to let me know what you’re up to…


Jun 2, 2016 Eric Toussaint 6 Comments

It hurts, but it always hurts so I push on

My body warms and it is less

I am running and it is good

The poison departs and the goodness enters

There are trees, grass and earth

I am running fast and it is good

Their is freedom in my mind

Their is peace in my soul and being

I am running faster and it is good

I think I will always run

-Eric Toussaint

My New Shoes – Hoka Vanquish Two

Apr 29, 2016 Eric Toussaint 6 Comments

I just had to take a moment and talk about how much I love this shoe. I have have arthritis in my right big toe from an old martial arts injury that I incurred thirty years ago. It has significantly effected my running. I chose not to run the Cherry Blossom ten-miler this year because last year my toe hurt for months after the race.

I had all but given up running, when I decided to try out my first pair of Hokas. I recently purchased the Hoka Vanquish Two. Maximum cushioning to say the least and a rocker sole. I decided to give running one more try. My distance has only been up to five kilometers but I have had no pain at all!!

I can only guess that it is due to the maximum cushioning and the rocker sole that causes me to bend my big toe less than I would normally. Whatever it is, I am elated to be able to run pain free again. I hoping to up my mileage soon and will keep you posted.

Overall this is a super comfortable, stylish shoe and I think I have become a fan for life.

Thanks Hoka!!

Equestrian Vs. Motocross Rider

Mar 17, 2016 Eric Toussaint 6 Comments

I delve into the esoteric in this blog post, but the comparison must be made for those that know and follow or participate in these equally epic sports.  When I was much younger, I was a motocross racer, and in days more recent I train a few equestrians.  Despite the two very different cultures, the physical activity involved in these two sports are surprisingly similar.  The test of core and adductor muscles, as well as all other muscles imaginable caused me to take pause and compare the two.

In motocross you are part of the suspension – you must flex and move with all of the terrain availed, as well as with the monster machine underneath you!  My clients describe equestrian riding in much the same way.  Your overall fitness must be at peak levels in both pursuits due to the full body involvement required.  So what is the ultimate comparison?!

I found these two articles:

I suspect if you can do one, I bet you could do the other (with practice of course).  If you ride motocross bikes and can handle whoop-de-doos, then I bet you could learn to gallop and jump with a horse and vice versa. See comparison below.

Happy riding and I hope you get to experience both in your life time.  I still need to tackle the equestrian angle!

Do You Get Enough Cardio?

Feb 29, 2016 Eric Toussaint 6 Comments

We here at JETT tell our clients to shoot for three to four days of cardio a week. The safest and easiest combination is two days on the elliptical at 55-65% of your maximal heart (fat burning and building you cardiovascular base) and two days spinning (interval training).

If you combine this with a sound diet and two days of weight-lifting (full body) you will be healthy.

Sometimes it’s hard to hit the mark, here are some tips.

  1. Get a FitBit (shoot for a minimum of 10,000 steps a day).
  2. Walk for half of your lunch hour.
  3. If weather permits get off the bus a stop or two a head of your destination.
  4. Get a treadmill desk.
  5. Join a running club so your have some accountability
  6. Schedule your cardio bouts in your smart phone.

Bottom line…move more we all can.

All the best and be healthy!!