Sunday, October 28, 2007

Ecotherapy by Hike

I took a group of ladies from the office hiking this weekend--call it "ecotherapy." I've been amazed at the effect that hiking has on not only a person's health, but their spirit. There is something to be said about getting out on the trail in some fresh air with the sounds of nature instead of the sounds of urban noise. John Muir knew what he was talking about. Try the'll probably like it. On an easy Sunday, Coach RJ

Friday, October 26, 2007

Begin again & again...

My good friend and tribal ZenBro Steve Ilg reminds us to "begin again and again." It seems here in the Santa Clarita area, that people are doing their best to begin again and get back to some normalcy. Cruised the bike path last night, and unlike a few days ago, there were actually people on it again with their families. It's weird going through something like the SoCal changes you...or at least should. Still smoky though. Had to relocate my corporate hike for this Saturday further North to get out of the smoke and bad air quality. No complaints though...I didn't get burned or lose any property. Thankful today to begin again, Coach RJ

Tuesday, October 23, 2007


Tonight there is an eerie calm in Santa Clarita Valley where I'm located. I went for a walk on the bike path about 9PM--not a single siren tonight, no flames on hillsides in view, clear skies overhead...a sharp contrast to last night's horrific scene of visual and auditory devastation. Over a million are displaced in SoCal, yet tonight in my area, just ironically calm. The gentle desert winds were warm and soothing--deceptive--last night they were fierce. It is so warm tonight you could lay by the pool in a swim suit and be comfortable. I can't imagine what my neighbors are going through that lost their's depressing...what has happened to the California I knew and loved as a child...thankful tonight for safety, Coach RJ

Eruption...The Perfect Storm

There are sickening sounds to death and mayhem...the thud of crashing cars followed by silence then screams, the sounds of bodies hitting the ground after people jumped from the Twin Towers on 911, and last night for me while photographing the SoCal fires in Santa Clarita via mountain bike access was the sickening and hollowing sounds of people's homes and cars exploding into flames...much of their lives exploding as well. Thankfully, no one was killed here last night...amazing when you think about it. The Fire Fighters are kicking some serious can't even imagine unless you are seeing it personally just how immense these fires have become. If hell is like this, you don't want to be there! Nearly everywhere I looked last night from the top of the mall parking structure, I could see flames and smoke, then after I got back yet another fire erupted near where I took last night's photos. Things seem to be settling down in my area today. Fires are moving West towards Oxnard and Ventura...we'll thing is for can't really say anyone here is out of danger yet with these kinds of fires and winds...from the fires...Coach RJ

Monday, October 22, 2007


I'm on lock down today at my California apartment in Santa Clarita. One of the biggest fires is just a few miles away. In a matter of a few hours, SoCal completely exploded in flames. I've never seen anything like it even though I was born and raised in Cali. Last night at sundown, I jumped on my MTB and road up to a ridge summit to get some photos of the large Agua Dulce and Castaic fires on the other side of the valley...absolutely incredible experience. The winds were blowing so hard it nearly blew me off my bike. Blinding dust, smoke, and ash. I rode down in near darkness along a deserted fire road listening to explosions from nearby homes going up in flames...very eerie...apocalyptic is how I've been describing it. More updates later today. If I can, I'm riding up to the top of the East Canyon ridge again for more sundown photos. For last night's comments, go to my Fire Update Page. From the SoCal flames today trying to stay cool, Coach RJ

Friday, October 12, 2007

Are We Really This Stupid? YES!

So, I'm watching the Today Show this morning when Tyson comes on with their newest product ads for "Any'Tizers" snack crap--and I do mean CRAP! They've got these three teen boys hypnotized on video games when the loving Mom comes in and plops down some of these nasty fried processed globs that to me resemble a large cat turd rolled in the cat box a few weeks! Of course, none of the kids were obese, so we know right there this is not reality in the true America today. Let's think about this! The name and slogans imply to eat these things "any time" desired. They state on their website, "...There is no limit to the amount of fun" for eating, blah... How about no limits to the amount of obesity and illness! That's a concept! If you're stupid, you'll believe this slick marketing and waste your money feeding crap to your kids. If you're smart, you'll intellectually THINK about what they are trying to get you to believe--that eating these things often for snacks is perfectly okay for your kids and family. I wouldn't feed these things to my dog let alone anyone I loved in my family! Give me a friggin' break...I cease to be amazed at what is going on in this country. Daily child obesity warnings in the media then in the same hour of viewing ads for feeding horrible food to your kids. Get a clue! Give your kids health and fitness--now that IS fun without limits! From the front and keepin' it real, Coach RJ

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Dad Day @ Doctor Office

So, I had a typical "Dad Day" yesterday. My little girl Ronnie had a small hernia. The Pediatrician referred us to the Pediatric Surgeon for evaluation. Some might be interested to hear what I see and feel in a typical "Dad" day. We loaded the twins into the car and headed to downtown Atlanta. Found the doctor (easier said than done in Atlanta!) and waited for a while. I picked up two issues of WebMD Magazine--a publication designed for medical waiting rooms. I love the WebMD site and use it often. I thought the magazine would be pretty good. I was disappointed. I looked at two issues. One only had ONE page on fitness--and this was finger exercises for arthritis! The other only had a couple of pages on fitness tips. The rest was clinical stuff and a whole lot of advertisements for prescription drugs. How ironic! Consider that most of the drug needs in this country would be cured or prevented by healthy eating and exercise! You would think with this in mind there would be more on exercise--but NO! One page! Give me a break! On a more positive note, the doctor walked in and was not fat and even athletic. We chatted about sports for a minute. He examined Ronnie's small hernia and basically said her body should be able to heal itself and that surgery was not recommended by him even though many other doctors would do surgery. What a breath of fresh air! My God! A healthy doctor that didn't recommend surgery--what a concept! We are thankful. The biggest worry to me with Ronnie was not even the hernia itself, but the dangers of bacterial infections with surgical procedures these days. That is worse than the hernia! So, we headed for lunch then took them to one of Atlanta's MANY wonderful park playgrounds. Stay tuned because I'm going to start writing more about community health and Atlanta as an example of how to do parks and recreation the right way. In A-Town, Coach RJ

Friday, October 5, 2007


Just rolled in from Vegas last weekend where I attended the 2007 Mr. Olympia Body Building Championships. It's funny, but I've only been to Vegas three times, and all three visits were for fitness related activities! What a crazy juxtaposition when you have thousands of fitness people next to obese, drinkin', smokin', and gamblin' mofos! Funny in a way. Second hand smoke aside, I had fun in Vegas at the events. Met some really nice people--even though their biceps were bigger than Coach RJ's thighs! :o) Doing my post-Vegas workout at gym last night in LA. Two little kids 4 and 5 were there with their Daddy. The little girl was running all over the gym like a wild woman! She watched me like a hawk as I did my warm up and got into my Spinning bike workout. They came over and started doing yoga and stuff. I finally asked them what they were up to. They were doing "gymnastics." Then they wanted to show me ALL of their moves! It was really cute. I enjoyed their gymnastics show. Quite fit and VERY excited about exercise and activity for little people. I thought how cool. They are being raised as physical culturist--to value and respect physical activity and fitness just like my twins Ronnie and Cade. There are two choices as I see it--raise your kids to be the next sloth at Vegas gambling on their fat asses or raise your kids to be healthy and physically active. If you do not make an ASSERTIVE and AGGRESSIVE effort to raise your kids for health, the Fat Food Nation will take over the job for you! Don't be passive...kick some serious ass for health and your kids! In Proactive Health--ALWAYS! Coach RJ