Sunday, 31 March 2013

Brandon Barr: F.U.E.L. Fitness and Massage

‘Raising the Barr’: Myofascial Release Therapist & Personal Trainer

By: Candice Marshall

There are a myriad of Massage and Fitness studios in the Edmonton area, but not many have the same expertise and knowledge on Myofascial Release Therapy (MRT) quite like Brandon Barr does. To his knowledge, there are only three in Western Canada trained on this specific method of massage therapy (two in the Edmonton area and one in Canmore, Alberta).  His technique is Postural Correction, a method designed to eliminate the patterns of restriction (within the body) and realign the body to its proper posture. This is a method he has incorporated in his business F.U.E.L. Fitness & Massage since 2010. MRT is a form of ‘soft tissue’ therapy that focuses on treating the pain associated with the restrictive motion, dysfunction, and hardening of the Fascia – the outer covering of the body that covers all muscles (ligaments, fibers and filaments). (see photo below)

Barr points out what "fascia' looks like in a photo description

“Its (Fascia) construction is similar to a spider web, a spider web being fully integrated into the function of the body. So as muscles contract and relax, twist, turn, rotate, flex and extend, they deteriorate. The body then gets into patterns of restriction. There will be areas (of the body) that are more powerful or dominant than others. Myofascial Release is ‘Removal of Patterns of Restriction’ on larger areas of restrictive tissue that is preventing full range movement of the body,” said Barr.
“Restrictive fascia also prevents muscles from getting adequate blood supply, adequate nervous function, and that (restricted) area is removed from sensation to the brain. The brain forgets that it exists. Try sitting at a desk for nine hours and then sit up and get your shoulders to drop. You can’t. Why? That area has been completely compromised due to repetitive stress. Our treatment is there to remove the classic pain syndromes: Lower back issues, mid-back issues, upper neck and shoulders that are stiff and achy, numbness and tingling down the arms, disc issues, knee pain and chronic headaches. By removing restrictions, the adhesion of fascia is removed to restore optimal function. This is all fixed by re-posturing,” said Barr.
It’s easy to see that after only spending a few minutes with Barr he genuinely understands how to properly care for his clients and for their overall fitness goals and health through MRT. This stems from his own experience when he was faced with surgery after tearing a rotator cuff during a college baseball game. “I chose to heal through a method of massage therapy and physiotherapy. I recovered in six weeks and was able to return to my (baseball) career. (Barr played with the ‘Central Christian College’ in Kansas, USA, and the ‘Prairie Dogs’ in Lethbridge, AB) Not long after, I decided to pursue an interest in Massage Therapy,” he said.
Because of his quick recovery, and out of curiosity, Barr made the decision to switch careers and begin studying Massage Therapy in the fall of 2002 at Grant MacEwan College in Edmonton, AB. “The moment I got in (to the program), I knew I didn’t want to go in (learning) the traditional ‘Eastern’  mode of massage therapy. I wanted to focus on the effective treatment and prevention of injury. That was my main drive and my main focus and I knew that from day one. My knowledge of the human body expanded and I grasped a ‘visual’ (hands on) understanding with the patients I was treating through my course studies in school. It was there that I met with a colleague who spoke to me about the concept of Myofascial Release Therapy,” he said.
With MRT being a large part of what Barr specializes in, the prevention of injury is also in his field of expertise. He helps clients through fitness training, another aspect of his business. He has cleverly organized his studio not only for the massage practice, but also for clients who wish to achieve long-term success in fitness and overall health through specific strength training exercises that can be carried over into the ‘daily living demands’ placed on a person’s body.
“Once you remove the restrictions on the body through MRT, people can come back with the same problems. Why? The problems are a result of weakness in the body. This is where the fitness (offered in his program) comes in. I focus on functional retraining and re-patterning movements to help make my clients strong from the inside out. I work with them on core stability and restoring range of motion so that they can be dynamically functional. I’ll incorporate Pilates methods, stretching, resistance, and strength training all integrated into a program to help those areas of weakness,” he said.
In terms of weight loss, Barr said, “People lose weight and what are you going to fill that empty space with? In order for you to lose more weight, you have to increase the density of your lean muscle in order to continue to lose at a steady pace. We help people by stabilizing their core, strength training, and the stretches they need to help combat repetitive pains and manage weight. It empowers clients as to a better understanding of what their body is capable of through these treatments.”
I thank Barr for the opportunity to educate our Weigh to Goal (Coaches Corner) readers and at the end of our meeting; he smiled cleverly and said, “Want to know what the F.U.E.L. (Business name) stands for? Function Uniting Energy and Life.”
I saw what you did there Brandon…very clever, but true indeed! Keep on keeping on!


Those interested in booking an appointment with Barr may contact him at:


Brandon Barr RMT, PTS
F.U.E.L Fitness & Massage
Ph: (780)7181231
Edmonton, AB

Sunday, 24 March 2013

DJ Baum: Xtremeline Supplements & Fitness Expert

Anthony "Rumble" Johnson (UFC Champion) & DJ Baum,
Owner of Xtremeline Supplements in Sherwood Park, Alberta, Canada

By Candice Marshall

“Slow and steady wins the race. It’s always a good thing to keep in mind that the calories going in versus calories out (expended) are an important part of a diet and fitness regimen. So many people want to lose weight fast but moderation is the key to long-term success,” said DJ Baum, Owner of Xtremeline Supplements in Sherwood Park, Alberta, Canada.

“The customers that come into our location are training for a (bodybuilding) competition or they want to bulk up and need advice on the best supplements to take. However, we also have clients wanting advice about losing weight. I feel that women are subject to more media pressure to be thin and I have had some female clients inquire about weight loss supplements when they really don’t need to lose any weight,” he said.

Baum with UFC Announcer, Bruce Buffer (veteran voice of the 'Octagon')

Baum is a man of many talents. Not only is he the sole owner of the popular supplement retail location, he has Personal Training and Youth Coaching (for the Special Olympics) under his credentials as well. In addition, he has inspired many of his clients and customers within the Body Building industry to “bulk up” or “slim down” through proper nutritional supplements and advice based on his own personal experience.

The interest in helping others to achieve their fitness goals began in 2006 after suffering a severe shoulder injury. Rather than go through surgery and a nine month recovery period, Baum chose to heal on his own through weight training and proper supplementation (diet). Following this, he took up personal training with clients for a year and a half before opening his business ‘Xtremeline Supplements’ in June of 2009.

In speaking with Baum, it’s not difficult to see why he is the ‘go-to’ guy for fitness and health tips. “It’s all about moderation. I recommend a ‘cheat night’ to my clients. Basically, it’s one evening where you allow yourself to eat whatever you want. This actually re-sets the body from the regular “diet routine” to prepare for further weight loss and also helps curb cravings. If you go 24 hours a day, seven days a week on a strict diet regimen, you are likely to binge. A cheat night alleviates that.”

l-r: Dan Johns (Baum's cousin), Dana White (UFC President), and Baum
“One of the other things I have noted from my clients is that they get ‘bored’ with their fitness regimen. My advice is to mix things up. For example: do intervals in training. Try running on the treadmill at different inclines at alternating speeds and lengths of time. This keeps the body guessing and you don’t get stuck working the same muscles repetitively. You also can avoid injury by mixing things up as well as covering a broader range of muscle groups for overall conditioning.”

He added further, “Everyone wants a magic solution for their fitness goals; whether it’s to bulk up in muscle mass (men) or to lose extra weight (women). Even with the best supplements in the world available, a lot of hard work and dedication through a combination of weight training and cardio is what really gets the results to attain those goals. That and a proper diet of course. In my experience, women are afraid to lift weights for fear of gaining too much muscle mass. Women do not have proper hormones in their bodies to build the muscle mass as seen in male bodybuilders. They would notice more lean muscle building as opposed to bulking up. My advice: stay off the scale and see how your clothes are fitting. That’s a better indication of how fit you are becoming.”

Great advice DJ! We can see why you are the go-to guy for fitness advice. Keep on keeping on!

For a consultation with Baum, you may contact him at:
Phone: (780) 640-9191

Photo Synopsis: In addition to giving fitness advice for his customers, Baum has also bumped shoulders with many notables within the UFC (Ultimate Fighting Championship) industry such as: Bruce Buffer (UFC Announcer), Dana White (UFC President), and UFC Champs Anthony Johnson, Matt Hughes, Frank Mir, Forrest Griffin, and Rich Franklin. (see photos below and throughout article)

l-r: Baum with Forrest Griffin (Former UFC Light Heavyweight Champion)

l-r: Baum with Frank Mir (Former UFC Heavyweight Champion)

l-r: Baum with Matt Hughes (Nine time UFC Welterweight Champion)

l-r: Rich Franklin (former UFC Middleweight Champion) and Baum

Dr. Charles Rouse – 'The Medicine Man' and Gem in the Visi™ Crown

(l-r) Dr. Charles A. Rouse Jr., R.PH., N.M.D., and our very own
'Coach' Craig Leibel, Visi Arctic Premier (and Weigh to Goal Co-Administrator!)
at the "Dr. Rouse Tour" in Calgary, Alberta, Canada on February 26th, 2013

By: Candice Marshall

The door to the hotel suite at the Blackfoot Inn (Calgary, Alberta, Canada) is slightly ajar when our (Independent Visi™ Distributor) team arrives to meet Dr. Charles A. Rouse Jr., Registered Pharmacist, Natural Medical Doctor (N.M.D.) and Scientific Founder of the Visi™ Lifestyle products (launched in April 2012), a Company which has been gaining huge momentum with the success of their Trimma© Weight Loss (all-natural) capsule. We are meeting Dr. Rouse for the first time during his Canadian Tour to hear what he has to say about the product. 

Upon entering the room, we make our way through a small crowd of dignitaries towards a cheerfully-dressed gentleman who stands to greet us. It is not difficult to see that this man (Dr. Rouse) has captured everyone in the room’s attention with his gentle, southern accent and more importantly, his wealth of information on the Visi™ lifestyle products. They are trying to grasp in twenty minutes what he has acquired in a 25 year span in the pharmaceutical industry, specifically pharmacognosy: a branch of pharmacology focusing on the medicinal benefits obtained from plants and their positive effects on the human body.

One of the key ingredients of the Trimma© product (that Dr. Rouse spoke about) is the Arctic Cloudberry from Scandinavia (referred to as ‘Scandinavian Gold’). This nutrient rich berry (among others included in the product) is known for its extremely high levels of vitamins A, C, E and B as well as Calcium Magnesium and benzoic acid to promote good health and natural beauty. During the event in Calgary, dozens of consumers stood up to attest to this powerful ingredient and how the simple routine of swallowing one capsule a day has led to remarkable results such as: “I have more energy than ever!” and “I have lost 47 pounds since taking this!”
The Arctic Cloudberry, a key component ingredient in the
'Visi Trimma' Weight Loss Capsule, is known for it's nutrient-rich properties
that go hand in hand with Good health from the inside out
“We are seeing people with health issues related to Cardiovascular (heart health), Thyroid and Diabetes ease up and they are losing weight. The product is helping people to alleviate insulin resistance (diabetics) and energy levels go up. Our bodies have become acclimated to processed foods and sugars. As a result, too much insulin is released into the body and we become insulin resistant. Too much insulin in the body releases cortisol to try to balance out the body. Too much cortisol gets released from the blood and is converted into belly fat. People become tired and weight loss is stalled. Trimma helps to clean the liver, support the adrenal system, and help make insulin resistance go away,” said Dr. Rouse.

 “With Trimma, one will experience better sleep, more energy in the daytime, lower cholesterol, lower blood pressure/sugar levels, and they will lose extra belly fat through a method of appetite control, conversion of body fat, and thermogenesis (production of heat within the body),” he said.
Not long after the tour ended, I had a chance to ask Dr. Rouse some more in-depth questions based on consumer experiences. Some have not experienced the immediate gratification of weight loss as quickly as other have while on the Trimma© product. So we thought to ask Dr. Rouse why. Here’s what he had to say in recent correspondence:

 “Those experiencing frustration with issues such as stalled weight loss, a heavier menstrual cycle or sleeplessness while taking Trimma will also benefit from the Energy© product as It helps to regulate the thyroid. Usually in this case, what is happening is the thyroid glands are not working properly. Keep in mind, though, that the body also has to reset itself as well to prepare for further weight loss (known as a ‘plateau’ - one will stop losing weight for a short period of time).”

 “There are also some people who are on antidepressants that will, on average, work against the patient and their weight loss efforts. One can experience weight gain (as much as 30 pounds!). In this case, taking Wellness© in addition to Trimma will help to keep the immune system ‘purring’. It prepares the body (for weight loss) by giving it the proper nutrients that are lacking (in most diets). There was a study done on a man (lacking in proper nutrition) who lost 60 pounds just taking Wellness (no Trimma!). The restoration of these proper nutrients also helped to improve his sleep at night and his memory,” he said.
Visi Wellness and Energy Products displayed at 'Super Saturday'
convention in Edmonton, AB, Canada
Currently, Dr. Rouse is working on literature to help educate people on the benefits of the plant derivatives found within the Visi™ products. He is also attending the Inaugural Visi™ Convention in Las Vegas on April 11-13th, 2013 where two BRAND NEW products will be discussed and launched (a Full Body Cleanse, and 100% absorbable Protein Chew!) The Weigh to Goal team plans on staying on top of this and keeping you, the reader and/or consumer informed about these two new launches through this media platform.

We would like to give a huge thank you to Dr. Rouse for the time spent in person and on the phone. He gives true meaning and credibility to the term “Gentleman” and we were honored (and grateful!) to have met him!

Keep on keeping on Dr. Rouse!


Additionally, in recent email correspondence from Ted Wilson (see below) we were filled in on further insight on the human body’s response to the Trimma product. In Dr. Rouse’s words:

When something is secretly making someone fat and you know it's not what you're eating or a lack of physical activity, then it's time to consider the hormones. Glands in the endocrine system produce many hormones that are responsible for the genetic conditions that influence one's metabolism and weight. 

Thyroid gland -- When it is weak the metabolism is slow to burn energy. The metabolism runs like a turtle. However, decreased thyroid is rarely the sole cause of being overweight. 

Adrenal glands -- Too much stress overstimulates the adrenal gland which releases cortisol and testosterone and estrogen. This means the person will eat more and rapidly store calories in the belly fat. High cortisol levels also reduce insulin sensitivity and the kidney will also retain salt and water that in turn will elevate the blood pressure. 

Pancreas -- A normally functioning pancreas secretes insulin. Insulin helps the sugar (glucose) to travel from the blood into the muscle to produce energy. But in the case of insulin resistance, the insulin becomes a "fat storage" hormone and it stops the appetite control from occurring. 

Reprogramming the hormonal circuits is the solution. You have to make the biology of the body work for you. The hormone that really helps out is called adiponectin. The bigger the omentum (belly fat) the less adiponectin one has. This also means the fat that is released from the fat omentum is going to travel to the liver.

Trimma© is designed to improve the hormonal structure, including the adiponectin levels; however, most people are already dealing with heavy omentum and subsequently enlarged fatty livers. Now we need a whole body cleansing enzyme system. We need the specialized enzyme bio-technology to clean up the stubborn spots. (Coming soon – April 2013 NEW product release!). Also, in the interim time as the body waits on the omentum to shrink and the adiponectin levels to rise, a trick to reprogram the hormonal circuits is to introduce 100% absorbable collagen protein (a NEW product release in April 2013!). This spiffies the glands and creates a sense of satiety and the appetite in controlled for longer periods of time. A fatty liver is usually a toxic liver -- it needs a whole body cleanse. 

Sometimes we're dealing with a lymphatic imbalance and this stems from the pituitary hormones, such as prolactin and growth hormone mediators. Lymphatics are hypersensitive to hormones. Dairy products overload their lymphatics therefore they need to curtail cream, milk, butter, cheese, ice cream, and chocolate. A good liver cleansing nutraceutical program is a must for these cases before they can speed up metabolism and weight loss. An under active thyroid is more common in lymphatic people. The whole body cleanse (coming in April 2013) is going to work wonders for them.

Candida (Yeast) can definitely hinder weight loss. The Candida produces hormones, including estrogens and steroids. Candida also increases the body's estrogen load that in turn inhibits thyroid performance and creates weight gain. Most of the time a Candida patient has a too low spectrum of two stomach digesters: Hydrochloric acid and Pepsin. A nutraceutical called Betaine hydrochloride plus Pepsin can solve this nemesis. This is also the time to introduce a probiotic (especially bifidobacterium, BB536).”

For more information on the Visi™ products visit:

Dr. Charles A. Rouse Jr., R.Ph., N.M.D (a.k.a. Dr.Charlie)
Dr. “Charlie” has been working exclusively with Visi Global as its medical expert and Scientific Founder.  His knowledge and understanding of natural medicine is well-established and highly respected, which makes him a sought after speaker/lecturer by his industry peers. 

Dr. Charles A. Rouse, Jr., is a Registered Pharmacist and Doctor of Natural Medicine (N.M.D.). In addition to the titles of speaker, author and health talk show radio host, Dr. Rouse is the founder of The Medicine Man’s Corner (, a naturopathic pharmacy, in Albany, Georgia.  Dr. Rouse’s unique background gives him special insight into traditional medicine as well as the highly acclaimed world of natural medicine.

(Synopsis credited to:

Ted Wilson (right) is a Visi™ Arctic Emerald Leader from Spruce Grove, AB, who also toured with Dr. Rouse earlier this year and was a huge key component into the successful organization of the tour. Wilson is a Kinesiologist by trade (proficient in the study of human movement: addressing physiological, mechanical, and psychological mechanisms in the human body) and has a full understanding of the benefits of the Visi™ products. Just another jewel in the Visi crown!

Sunday, 17 March 2013

The Beautiful People: Inspiring our Youth - Part 2

Photo Credit: Randy Pond Photography

Melissa Monz: The Runway Model inspiring young women
By: Candice Marshall
“Some people in the industry will say things to me like: you’re too old, too short, or too fat. I have the maturity to be able to deal with these kinds of (negative) comments, but for a younger woman or girl wanting to pursue a career as a model, this can be devastating. It’s really frustrating for me to experience this but I feel even worse for a young woman or girl who is truly beautiful and receives this kind of harsh criticism,” said Edmonton born Melissa Monz, Runway Model for Trisha Pasnak (Fashion Designer also based in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada).
Photo Credit: Darcy Evans Photography,
Fashion Photography for Designer: Trisha Pasnak
Upon first meeting Monz, it’s not hard to see why: she exudes natural beauty and grace that is demonstrated through her photo portfolio. It is why she is the muse for photographer, Darcy Evans (previous Coaches Corner feature person) and is coveted by Pasnak for the upcoming Spring Fashion Runway Show on March 26thfor (Western Canada) Fashion Week.
“I am considered ‘old’ in the fashion industry. I’m only 32, but most models are anywhere from 14-18 years old. I am also short and most models are at least 5ft 9” or taller. I am not doing this as a career move though. It’s more of a hobby for me. I love modeling but to be able to do some of the tough poses for photos, I work out (she attends hot yoga sessions to keep her tiny 5ft 3” frame in shape!), however, I am a human and I like my food, “said Monz smiling.
Unlike most competition in the Industry, Monz truly does enjoy modeling as a hobby as opposed to a career. “At fashion Runway shows, I help out backstage. It’s a lot of fun! We typically start at 8am and finish around 10pm. It’s a long but rewarding day. There is a lot of pressure to do a great job while out on the runway, but it’s always a great feeling at the end of the day knowing I did my best and had fun too!”

Photo Credit: Darcy Evans Photography
While working the runway is nothing new to Monz, creative photography is what she enjoys best and would like to do more of. “I am working on a creative project with a photographer at the moment. We are going to do a Scooby Doo (beloved Saturday morning cartoon television series)Photo shoot. I’m being casted in the role of Daphne. I even have the costume made for it! These are the most draining physically as you are doing a lot of different poses for long periods of time, but to me, they are the most fun!”

Photo Credit: Darcy Evans Photography
In a society obsessed with weight and appearances, Monz appears confident in herself and her image despite the obstacles of criticism one might experience in the fashion industry. However, she seems quite concerned for the younger generation of models wanting to ‘make it big’. “These young women coming in (to the industry) are impressionable and are often not prepared for what they are about to experience. There are 'professionals' that may say hurtful things to them (during a photo shoot or runway show) that they wouldn’t normally say in out in the real world. I have seen some young girls very underweight as a result of being told they are ‘too fat’. In addition, they are often unsupervised and can easily be misled by a so-called photographer who does not have the proper credentials. As a precaution, I always do a background check on anyone who wants to do a photo shoot with me and I encourage these young women to do the same,” said Monz.

Photo Credit: Michael Legge - Acceleration Images
“Another thing that they don’t realize is that there are a lot Representatives from Modeling Agencies who will ‘scout’ out for new talent and approach these young women on the street with their business card telling them that they should be modeling. They tell them that they are pretty and it gets them excited. Then, when they call the agency, they are (more often than not) told that there is a ‘fee’ to enroll in their program. If an agency really wants you to model for them, they will be paying YOU, not the other way around,”warned Monz.
“One strong piece of advice I would like to give young women or girls pursuing this lifestyle is this: being ‘pretty’ or ‘beautiful’doesn’t always translate onto a camera. I’ve seen some very ‘average’ looking people take the most amazing photos. These people look like someone much different behind the camera. The ‘unique’ look is often what most designers or photographers will notice more and choose for their runway shows or photo sessions. I encourage all young girls to approach this industry as a ‘hobby’ as opposed to a career. The experience will be much more enjoyable.”
Well said Melissa!
Monz modeling in one of many "Creatives' from
Darcy Evans Photography called 'My Doll Collection'

The Beautiful People: Inspiring our Youth - Part 1

Roy Hendrickson:  The Body Builder, Model, Actor, and Dad inspiring his Children
By: Candice Marshall

He is a shy and quiet person, but Roy Hendrickson (Body Builder/Actor/Model), has a presence about him that makes one take notice. His piercing blue eyes capture anyone’s attention, and his articulate conversation skills maintain that connection. These qualities, among many, naturally draw people to Hendrickson making him a positive role model, especially for his children. In fact, his talent for acting has also inspired his oldest son to pursue a career in the same industry. “He chose to quit hockey to pursue a career in acting and one of his first roles was to play a hockey player. It was ironic but interesting!” he smiled.
Albeit an inspiration for his children, Hendrickson maintains his modesty, “I struggle sometimes with my self-image. It’s tough for me to accept a compliment.”
This is hard to believe when you see him at first glance. His striking good looks and gentle demeanor bodes well as the strong, silent type for the modeling contract he’s had with the large Cosmetic Corporation, Elizabeth Arden. (He sported a tuxedo and posed as an ‘escort’ with models during a “live events” promotion for a new perfume campaign!) He has also appeared onscreen as an extra in a CBC (Canadian Broadcasting Corporation Television) two hour special called ‘The War Reporter’ as well as a part in the ‘Blackstone’ series on television’s APTN Network. He has also modeled as a Marvel Comics icon in Darcy Evan’s (Photographer, featured previously in Coaches Corner) most recent creative photo shoot titled, ‘The Evolution of Joker” (see below).
Photo Credit: Darcy Evans Photography
Photo Credit: Darcy Evans Photography
In addition to acting and modeling roles, Hendrickson has also competed in the International Natural Bodybuilding & Fitness (INBF) event at the “Capital City Competition” (held in Sacramento, California, USA, in 2009) coming in fourth place in the Lightweight category. “It was a great experience. I was pretty proud of my accomplishment after it was over, but up until the event, it was a lot of hard work and dedication. I was down to five percent body fat. Not everyone can say they can get their body percentage that low. You have to follow a very strict diet and exercise program,” he said.
Hendrickson’s intense workout regimen began 12 weeks prior to the competition. It consisted of working out five days per week with 45 minutes of weight training and 15-20 minutes of cardiovascular exercises. His day would begin at 6am and finish at 10pm only to get up and repeat the same thing the next day. He credits his physique to a combination of good diet (that consisted of vegetables, egg whites, Isagenix products - supplements & whey protein shakes) and plenty of water.
Photo Credit: Renee Robyn Photography
Photo Credit: Renee Robyn Photography
Photo Credit: Renee Robyn Photography
“If I were to begin training right now, I would give myself about three months to prepare. When I competed at INBF, I was pretty dedicated to my regimen four to seven days of the week. At the time, my children were younger (Hendrickson has three boys), and being a single dad with hockey commitments took away from the focus some of the time. If I compete again, I plan on sticking to being more committed to the program,” he said.
Acting, Modeling and Competitions aside, Hendrickson feels the most importance in his life is his children and encouraging them to attain their dreams and goals. He is actively involved in coaching their hockey practices and games, attending football practices, and activities such as skiing for a family fun day. “I encourage them to stay active and eat healthy, avoid sugary drinks, eat protein after a workout or practice and drink lots of water. What’s important for me is health and happiness. I believe I’ve taught them (by example) a solid foundation for both,” he said.
Way to go Roy! Keep on keeping on!

Photo Credit: Renee Robyn Photography

Sunday, 10 March 2013

Color Me Rad: Edmonton Edition – The Raddest (and possibly largest) 5k yet!


*UPDATE: April 4th, 2013 - Just received a quick message from Scott Ward (Race Director) that there are TWO official dates for EDMONTON: July 6th & 7th, 2013. The 6th run date is SOLD OUT and the 7th is NEARLY sold out as well! Let's do this Edmonton! This article was written prior to the March 6th, 2013 registration date so we are keeping you in the loop as to what's shaking;) Go to to register ASAP!*

By Candice Marshall
What person in their right mind wants to participate in a five kilometer run while getting plastered with paint and puff bombs (made with non-toxic, non-rashing corn starch) of vivacious color every five minutes? Let’s see….approximately 8000 people!!! Yes, that’s right! On July 6th, 2013, 8,000 participants will be running in Edmonton, Alberta to benefit the Children’s Stollery Hospital at the University of Alberta. This large number of people is a combination of individuals, teams (of families, friends, and businesses), and volunteers.

Race Participants getting "Color Bombed" during the Color Me Rad 5k race
“Calgary sold out in three days. It was crazy! We expect Edmonton to sell out very quickly as well,” said Scott Ward, Race Director for Color Me Rad (from Salt Lake City, Utah, USA). However, that was his comment only TWO DAYS prior to online registration (March 6th). Little did he know that Edmontonians were waiting on baited breath for registration to open up! In fact, Edmonton sold out for the race within ONE day!
The Advertisement for the Edmonton Registration date which
sold out in ONE DAY!
Comments on Color Me Rad’s Facebook Page range from the disappointed “Please make more spots! Edmonton will be the biggest Color Me Rad run. Get it on world news!” to the excited “Just signed up, so excited to be Rad with “the serial colors!”. The quick sell out has left many others disappointed that they missed their opportunity to participate. However, Weigh to Goal contacted Scott Ward and asked the question: “We heard a rumor that your company was thinking of hosting TWO run dates for Edmonton. Is that true?”
Here’s what we received back from Ward: “True Indeed!”
So, those wanting to participate (in what is beginning to look like the largest Color Me Rad run yet) in Edmonton, Alberta may just get that opportunity soon enough! Stay tuned!
“The Color Me Rad Company is comprised of three owners: Matt Ward (no relation to Scott), Scott Crandall, and John Nalfatto. (Also from Salt Lake City, Utah) They have been putting on races for approximately 7-10 years now mainly in the west coast of the United States called ‘The Dirty Dash’ (a mud run). They’ve hosted approximately 30 races with that event. They saw the success of The Color Run (began approximately 6 months prior to Color Me Rad), and decided to jump right in (and start a second genre - Color Me Rad 5k),” said Ward.
“The original idea for this race came from a holy festival in India called ‘Festival of Colors’. It has really caught on here. We host these events and a portion of the proceeds go to local charities such as the Children’s Stollery in Edmonton. We come to the city 3 days prior to the event and set up. In that time, approximately 100-150 volunteers help out with everything from handing out registration packets to joining the ‘Bomb Squad’. (must be 14 years or older)”
So what can one on the volunteer ‘Bomb Squad’ expect on race day at the Edmonton Expo Centre? “It’s a lot of fun! We have about five stations set up: three powder and two liquid color stations (with the colors: blue, green, pink, purple, and yellow). The volunteers literally get fistfuls of color to throw at the participants running by. There are multiple people set up at each station too. We recommend that people wear something they don’t mind getting trashed because they will be covered in color by the end of the race,” he laughed.

A sample of the "Color Packet" that is handed out at registration.

When asked about his thoughts of comparing the amount of color thrown during the Color Me Rad 5k and The Color Run, Ward said, “It’s like comparing Skittles (Color Me Rad) to chocolate covered M&M’s. Our volunteers get to throw a LOT more color.”
Participants can expect to receive a nice quality t-shirt, RAD tattoo, color packet (for joining in on the fun!) and a pair of sunglasses. “We recommend that people wear the sunglasses to avoid any color getting in their eyes. With that being said, we make sure to tell our volunteers not to aim at the face.  Also, teams are certainly allowed to create their own t-shirts and are encouraged to be creative. Just don’t expect them to look the same by the time the race is through!”
When asked about the Organization, Ward said, “We have two people with the company (in addition to Ward) prepping for the race. During the event there is a team of about seven or eight that contribute to setting up for the big day. (See photo with Ward and his team in Vancouver, BC, Canada, below) It’s a great group of like-minded people just wanting everyone to have a good time. This race is meant to attract people who wouldn’t normally do a run like this. It encourages people to get out and do something healthy for themselves while having fun.”
With 8,000 participants in Edmonton and 10,000 or more expected to run in Calgary, Alberta, one can see why!

Scott, we thank YOU for taking the time to speak with Weigh to Goal ( ) and look forward to meeting you and your team in COLOR in July! In the meantime, keep on keeping on Scott!
(l-r) Gretchen Willard, Jerrica Hall, Scott Ward, Wesley Larson, JP Lewis, and Matt Ward

**Special Note about Registration & Additional Date for Color Me Rad 5k run:

Fans of our Facebook Page Weigh to Goal and Color Me Rad have contacted us to join our Visi Dream Team in hopes of getting “in” on the race with us. While we appreciate your excitement and support, here is how the process works:

At this time you will need to register as a volunteer for the July 6th run date. According to our fan source, there is a wait list for the volunteer roster, but committing in this way may guarantee a spot for those wanting in on the Visi Dream Team for that date should a volunteer position become available. (Details for our team or to donate to the Children’s Stollery are posted at the end of this article) Alternatively, you can watch our Facebook Page, the website , or Facebook Page for updates as to when the second registration comes available.

For those signed up and/or registered as a volunteer who wish to join our Visi Dream Team, please contact Candice Marshall at (780) 782-7399 and we will be sure to get you in! To donate to our efforts to raise $5000 or more towards the Children’s Stollery, click on the link below and you will be redirected to the donation page. We THANK YOU in advance!
Donate to:
Team name: Visi Dream Team
Team Leader (last) Name: Marshall

Visi Trimma Weight Loss, Wellness and Energy product information: If you know anyone who wants to lose some weight and gain energy, contact us (inbox) or see our Weight Loss Challenge (also in the events section of our page) contact info for a distributor in your area! Info on the Visi products can be found at:

Sunday, 3 March 2013

Darcy Evans: Photo Genius

By: Candice Marshall

People don’t know what pandemonium is until they experience it. The definition of the term is simply this: wild and noisy disorder or confusion; uproar. The latter part of the meaning is it in a nutshell when taking a first glance at the images of award winning photographer Darcy Evans as his artistic vision is generating just that. From “Jokers” past and present locked in a menacing stare-down (Batman fans applaud him! see above) as well as bringing to life the bubbly Archie comic characters we all familiarized ourselves with as children (see below), Evans has caused much discussion (and attraction) to his creative images on his website and Facebook page. The term may seem like an insult when applying it to the born and raised Edmontonian, but upon viewing his portfolio and the broad spectrum of naturally lit images (no Photoshop!) it’s easy to see that the man is a photographic genius and the public is noticing that.

The "Archie Comics" Creative on location at Daddy O's Diner
in Edmonton, AB

The Doll Story

“The ’My Doll Collection’ photo shoot (Evans Signature creative work) was my favorite. It was one month from the conceptual (planning) stage until the finished product. We began shooting at 6am in the basement of an old building downtown Edmonton, Alberta, and didn’t wrap up until midnight. It was a long day for everyone involved, but Melissa Monz (Model, and ‘doll’, pictured below) totally rocked it and the end result was extraordinary. My favorite type of shoot to do is creatives like this one (fine art photography). I have so many ideas that I would like to try, but it takes time to get a project like this together. Casting (roles) and budget is key. I shoot creatives like this about four times a year for those reasons,” said Evans.

"My Doll Collection" Evans, pride and joy Creative Photo Shoot
featuring Model and Muse: Melissa Monz

Fitness Photography

This visionary has dabbled in areas of photography including Fitness and Boudoir images that have captured the essence of each subject. “I picked up my first camera about two years ago. My starting point was with a friend of mine, Anastasia Powell (Tattoo Artist and Fitness Enthusiast). She is one of the most beautiful people I know and I wanted to capture her on film. The photo shoot turned out so well that I just continued.” Pleased with the results, Powell referred other professionals within the fitness industry to Evans for their portfolios thus propelling him forward with his career and into the spotlight. “When I posted this photo, I had 600 likes on Facebook alone in one day,” said Evans, referring to his award winning “Bodyscape” image (see below).

The Models body shapes from Evans images range from the sleek physique in his artistic fitness photos, to a softer, genteel approach demonstrated in his boudoir photos. (Images shown below) “I think that a bigger woman who is confident in her body shows through the images. There’s nothing sexier than a woman who has confidence,” he said.

The Photographers inspiration: Anastasia Powell

Boudoir Portfolio

Unique "Boudior" images lend credibility to the artists' "vision" for beauty

The Fashion Photographer & More

However, his projects don’t stop there. Evans has just finished wrapping up the Spring “Look Book” for up and coming Fashion Designer Trisha Pasnak (from Edmonton, Alberta) and has captured beautiful still-life images of dogs for the 2013 “Rescued Friends” calendar with the Paws in Need Animal Rescue, a volunteer group in Edmonton . “Trisha and I have worked on a few projects together and I really enjoy it. I photographed her spring look book (the designer’s portfolio) prior to fashion week (March 21st – 28th). I will have the slide show up on my website before then,” he said. (See photos below)

Spring preview for Fashion Designer Trisha Pasnak's "Look Book"

Pet Photography - Images to melt your heart!

Evans Pet Photography. Just a sampling of the beautful and heart-felt images...

The Studio

After our interview, Evans gives me the grand tour of his studio, located in the basement of his home. It is there that the artist transforms concrete floor and walls to the backdrops for his images. “Some shoots are done outdoors or on location, but most are done here in my studio. I am just taking down the set from Trisha’s shoot yesterday. I like to build the sets myself,” he said, motioning to the hardwood flooring pieces stacked neatly next to a tripod. It's hard to imagine the amazing scenes displayed on the artists website when looking around at the dismantled backdrop, but the photos speak for themselves: they are truly creative genius.

“I have a lot of ideas for future projects. For instance, I’d like to put together a coffee table book of late 1800’s boudoir images. Currently I am looking for models/paying clients for this initiative. I have the project in my mind of what I’d like to do so it’s in the planning stage at the moment. Primarily, I have been doing pet and fitness photography for clients and truly enjoy doing it. I love photographing animals. However, creatives are what have a passion for!” he said, smiling.

It shows! Keep on keeping on Darcy!
Evan's 1920's-style Creative emanating the Classic Horrors from films gone by
Currently, Evans is on location in the Mayan Riviera, Mexico shooting a wedding for a client and friend. He plans on taking a few days to also gather some images of the surrounding area. Watch for those images at: .

Aside from the projects mentioned in this article, Evans has worked with Sugarkiss Magazine and has won numerous awards such as: Top Marco Photo at the Edmonton Photography Trade Show and honorable mention from the Alberta Photon Camera Club International Expo. His images can be viewed on Facebook and his Website: Darcy Evans Photography.
To arrange a photo session, contact Evans at:

PH: (780) 952-7909