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#15 Spark up the power of your internal engine to live #OlderFasterStronger

Do you have a V-8 engine driving a sports coupe body or a V-4 struggling to power a SUV body? In fitness terms, that’s your VO2 score, a measure of the working capacity of your heart, lungs and muscles. In poetic terms, a VO2 test measures your life force, your internal candle burning brightly, hopefully, for as we age, that candle burns down a little each year, from a relative VO2 of 40 to 46 for fit women in their 20s, to 28 or 29 for menopausal women, to 15, which will likely land you in a retirement home as that’s considered the minimum required to live independently. But here’s the thing: Your life force need not decline so drastically, and you can spark up your VO2 by as much as 15 percent in just four months, at any age. The magic elixir? Exercise, of course.  Stuff that makes you move. That’s why masters runners can sport a VO2 in the same range as very fit 20 somethings; and, sadly, why so many couch-potato 20 somethings now score a VO2 in the range of sedentary 50 somethings. Show me the VO2 of a 70 year old and a 20 year old, and I’ll tell you who will win the race – and age has nothing to do with it. Click for more tips.


Welcome to my new “Webb” site

Sorry dear readers for the dreadful pun, but welcome to my new “Webb” site. I will be blogging regularly here in the new year, on my obsession to make 2012 stupendously super awesome.

I have already logged 80 kilometres towards that goal, leaving only 1,180 training kilometres to run until I cross the finish line at the Boston Marathon, April 16. My goal? To be in the best shape of my life, ever.

I’m also thrilled to say that I’m heading into the homestretch of my future-of-food novel, set in a green valley in the future & I will be chatting about that at the Guelph Organic Conference, January 27.

In the meantime, check out Eating Canada to take an eating tour of Canada via my book, Apples to Oysters: A Food Lover’s Tour of Canada ( sample the first chapter for free!). There are also articles about local eating tours of Ontario and my Toronto Star series, Crisis on the Farm,” in which your scribe cracked open a dastardly plot to make it nearly impossible to raise organic turkeys in Ontario. I believe my line —  it may be easier to buy crack cocaine in Ontario than a drug-free bird — may have roused the ag minister to take action to save organic turkeys.

This January, I’m back at Ryerson University teaching Writing for Magazines and the Web in the Magazine Publishing program in Continuing Education. Please check it out if you want to polish your talents for blogging, writing short articles and features or bringing a reader-friendly glow to corporate, policy, grant or PR writing.

And I can’t help serving up some food for thought for the holidays: If every Canadian ate the recommended 5 to 10 servings of fruit and veggies a day, we could save the Canadian health care system more than $6 billion dollars. So eat your fruit and veggies, preferably grown sustainably and close to home.

And on that note, go for a walk or be in a big hurry to get healthy and run! It’s really good for you. After eating my way across Canada researching and promoting my book, I bumped up my old-lady, flat-footed shuffling and trained to run a marathon, fell in love with it, ran a second marathon, and qualified for the big kahuna of races, the Boston Marathon. Oh, and I lost 20 pounds in the process. Check out the picture up there. That’s me, scampering up Mt. Kilimanjaro this past June (more on that TK).

If you want to get in touch with me, it’s easy. Just point and click the “contact” button in the top right-hand side of the navigation bar. I’d love to hear from you.

Happy holidays.