Control, Contentment, & Dying
Katelyn Sander

Control, Contentment, & Dying

Living Well...together, while apart

By: Meg Sharp, Director of Personal Training, Cambridge Group

On Monday, we lost my father-in-law. After a relatively long struggle with a terminal illness, he died. Surrounded by his immediate family. Tearful. Peaceful. Ultimately on his own terms.

This piece isn’t really about death. It’s about how gaining control over even the smallest thing in our lives can influence a positive state of mind.

For months, my father-in-law was wracked with incredible pain, loss of dignity, anger, and frustration as he lost control of the powerful body he had once thrived in for over 80 years. After he made his decision to have medical assistance to facilitate his death, his whole demeanor changed. He became patient, tolerant, peaceful… happy even.

This isn’t about whether or not MAID is the “right” thing. It’s about creating opportunities to feel stronger, more centered, more content.

Horrible, heartbreaking things happen all the time. We suffer unbearable losses of different sorts and magnitudes. Many of you have suffered over the past months. Often without those you hold near and dear being able to be truly there with you. 

When we lose – it is typically accompanied by a loss of control. This secondary loss can be frustrating and debilitating. And can be the easier of the two losses to address.

I guess what I’m trying to say is “all is not lost”. One of the simplest, most therapeutic steps you can take is finding – within the chaos and pain – something you CAN control.

For my father-in-law, he ultimately regained control of his own body.

For many of us – that is also a positive solution.

No matter what happens, you can exercise control over your own body to some extent. Use of the word “exercise” is deliberate.

Start with deep, mindful, rhythmic breathing. Illicit a parasympathetic response throughout your system and feel your shoulders, your stomach, and your forehead relax. As oxygen floods your heart, lungs, and brain, spaces open up. Your mind clears a little and challenges start to look a little more like opportunities.

Commit to moving in a way that you crave or need. 

Fresh air and sunshine while pounding the pavement. Physically moving your body from point A to point B with strength and force can be purposeful and rewarding.

Accessing your end ranges through yoga or mobility work and controlling your muscles and breath at those end ranges. Feel powerful – not vulnerable – in these, open, awesome positions.

Perform compound lifts where every muscle starting from the centre of your being must fire and produce force, leaving you pleasantly spent and strangely exhilarated.

Fly up a powdered hill in your snowshoes, relishing how the frigid air makes your cheeks and fingertips feel strangely numb and fiercely alive at the same time.

There is much we can not control.

For each of us, there is something our body can do that we can control. Reminding yourself through movement how fast, pliable, mobile, coordinated, strong, enduring your body is is a powerfully positive thing. Deciding to make it a project to improve one or more of those parameters is a rewarding, valuable goal.

Today, be grateful for the body you have. Celebrate it through movement. Commit to taking care of it, tomorrow, and the next day, and the next… If somedays it seems it’s all you have, it can be more than enough. 

Today’s Inspiration

“Remember that people are only guests in your story – the same way you are only a guest in theirs – so make the chapters worth reading.” - Lauren Klarfeld

Today’s Live Workouts

Today is going to be a great day because we’ve got our THREE regular live workouts for you to join!


Join Adriana for your morning pick-me-up! This workout will focus on moving through a full range of motion and develop your full body control, flexibility, and usable range.

Recommended equipment: yoga block or pillow

Join Adriana at 7:30am (45 minutes) from your own living room.

Click here to join the workout.

Meeting ID: 812 2541 6617
Password: 013104


Get an amazing cardiovascular workout on an indoor bike. The workout will simulate an outdoor ride, including a mix of intervals and hills.

Recommended equipment: bike trainer

Join James at 12:00pm (45 minutes) from your own living room.

Click here to join the workout.

Meeting ID: 862 7308 7908
Password: 263088


This workout will challenge you to your max! Come out and perform the prescribed workout for the day. This workout utilizes all your skills, from coordination to endurance and strength. No equipment necessary, you’ll just need your body weight!

Join Garth today at 12:00pm (35 minutes) from your own living room.

Click here to join the workout.

Meeting ID: 842 2984 9491
Password: 510345


Click here to view this week’s schedule.

To learn more about our virtual live workouts, please reach out to Lauren directly.

Valentine’s Day Yoga

Join Lori to celebrate Valentine’s Day with a fun, energizing power flow yoga while listening to all of Lori’s favourite love songs, featuring: Journey, Air Supply, Chicago, Foreigner, and the Rolling Stones, to name a few.

Recommended equipment: yoga mat, yoga blocks/books, and long belt/strap for stretching.

Join Lori on Sunday at 10:45am from your own living room.

Click here to join the workout.

Meeting ID: 864 8934 3420
Password: 403118

Don’t worry, we’ll resend these workout details on the weekend so you’ll have them at the top of your inbox!

Featured Event

Wine, Chocolate, Cheese!

This Friday, join the Toronto Triathlon Festival team and start your Valentine’s weekend off right!

Join Simon Whitfield, Paula Findlay, and Cody Beals, along with Adrian, the TTF’s own sommelier for this free, unique, virtual event where they’ll talk wine, chocolate, and cheese (and maybe even a little triathlon)!

The event will be fun and lighthearted, giving you an opportunity to sharpen your wine knowledge and give you a great excuse to connect with the TTF community.

You’re encouraged to pick up the items below, and join us, as we learn some interesting facts about wine and how to pair it with some tasty treats!

  • Prosecco (any brand works)
  • Beaujolais or Beaujolais-Villages (any brand of this red works)
  • Ripasso (any brand of this red works)
  • Milk chocolate and dark chocolate
  • Brie or Camembert (Prosecco and Beaujolais), a mild blue such as St. Agur (Beaujolais), and a firmer cheese such as Pecorino or Parmesan (Ripasso)

DATE: Friday, February 12th
TIME: 6:00pm EST
WHERE: Watch on the TTF Facebook page

Today’s Bite

Roasted Cauliflower with Pancetta, Olives, & Crisp Parmesan

Cauliflower can lack in flavour, we know that, but not if you follow this recipe. Studded with salty olives, pancetta, and Parmesan that gets golden and crisp at the edges, this dish showcases roasted cauliflower in a way you’ve never seen before. Recipe from NY Times Cooking.

For more recipes like this, check out our latest Spice of Life blog.


  • 1 large head cauliflower (about 1 3/4 lbs), trimmed and cut into bite-size florets (about 8 cups)
  • 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 tsp kosher salt, plus more as needed
  • 1/3 cup olives, crushed, pitted, and chopped
  • 1 fat garlic clove, finely grated or minced
  • 1 1/2 tbsp fresh lemon juice, plus more to taste
  • 1/8 tsp red-pepper flakes, plus more as needed
  • 4 oz pancetta or bacon, cut into 1/8-inch cubes
  • 3/4 tsp cumin or caraway seeds
  • 1/2 cup shredded (not ground) Parmesan
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley or mint leaves and tender stems, for serving


  • Heat oven to 425F. Place cauliflower on a rimmed baking sheet and toss with 1/4 cup olive oil and 1/2 teaspoon salt until well coated. Roast for 15 minutes.
  • In a small bowl, whisk together olives, garlic, lemon juice, 1/8 teaspoon red-pepper flakes, and a large pinch of salt. Drizzle in the remaining 1/4 cup olive oil, whisking well.
  • After the cauliflower has roasted for 15 minutes, add pancetta and cumin seeds to pan and gently mix to combine. Sprinkle Parmesan on top and roast for another 15 to 20 minutes, until cauliflower is tender, the pancetta rendered, and cheese is golden brown and crunchy.
  • Spoon olive dressing all over roasted cauliflower while still hot and toss to combine. Taste, and add more salt, red-pepper flakes or lemon juice, if needed. Scatter parsley over the top before serving.


Do you have a “Something of the Day” you’d like us to share?! Email Meg.

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