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  • Writer's pictureMarc Lalonde

Transitions in life are tough

I was fortunate to get to play Santa Claus at the Midtown Christmas party the last two years. It was a delight.

In life, I have always struggled with transition times. Whether something is beginning, or something new is ending, I have always found that it’s hard for me to break from routine and leave a place I’ve grown attached to, and to go somewhere new. I must admit it’s been a tough three months as a trainer and even though my business – or rather, BECAUSE my business has taken a dramatic spike upwards, I no longer have the time or the inclination to keep working at Club Midtown le Sanctuaire in Montreal’s Outremont neighborhood.

It’s a legitimately sad day for me because I’ve discovered that even though negotiating the traffic, the early mornings and late nights and other headaches were a result of working there, the experience I gained, and the people I worked with made it more than worthwhile, and I’m legitimately sad to leave. The Club Midtown Le Sanctuaire experience is one every fitness enthusiast should at least try once.

I will leave some beloved clients and some dear friends, and I’ll use this space to pay them what I think is the appropriate tribute because of what they meant to me as colleagues and friends.

So that’s the end of that. My West Island business has grown to the point that I can no longer commit time and energy to working in the city and travelling there, but training options persist nonetheless. I’m still looking to fill just a few slots that are left in my weekly schedule. So if you’re curious about getting back into pre-lockdown shape, or better yet, better shape than you were pre-lockdown, message me via email at, on Facebook at Marc Lalonde, or just message me here.

Options include outdoor strength and cardiovascular training classes and indoor options as well.

First, the members and clients. I can’t tell you what it has meant to me that you have trusted me with this enormous responsibility and I’ll forever be grateful to each and every one of you for your faith. A few members became close friends, even if they weren’t clients of mine. I think of Candi Alper, Louise Lutfy, Louise Lanneville, Brenda Rosenberg, Marc-Andre Legault, Chris Kavathas, Gen Stathoulas, and many, many others. I’ll miss you all tremendously and I wish each of you the best in life, good health and continued prosperity.

To my colleagues:

Stephane Boivin: Big Steph was my direct supervisor and was a tremendous influence on me, imparting his wisdom, his teaching, his time, his energy, his spirit and his generosity. Never in my life have I worked for someone who set an example in the most efficient way possible, and never in my life have I been as inspired by a boss. I’ve had some great ones over the years, but I have never been able to say I would run through a wall for any one of them. If Stephane Boivin asked me the same thing, I would ask him ‘how many walls do you need me to run through for you?’ I’ll never forget you, Big Steph. Your guidance and mentorship were amazing.

Herve Daumas and Pierre Viret: Probably my best friends amongst my professional colleagues. We bonded over football, and work, and football. In that order. Pierre and Herve are both incredible resources for professional and fitness questions. I would trust both of you gentlemen with my own health as well of that of my children. I will consider you both family as long as I draw breath.

Joary Rakotoson: Simply the best group fitness teacher I have ever seen in action,. Your ability to smile through the darkest times make you an inspiration and a light in the world. I will always treasure having had the opportunity to play hockey with you that summer (2018). I hope we get to do it again.

Muna Breitem: Your enthusiasm and attitude were infectious and I will forever treasure your ability to make me laugh at 6 a.m. Your guidance and your advice in this bodybuilding campaign of mine has been invaluable. Your hour-long StairMaster workout and your ability to work out hard despite low energy will always be an inspiration. I’ll treasure your friendship for a long time.

Frad-Alexander (Alex) Olivier: I DID trust you with the health of my children and your patience as a basketball coach with my son and my daughter was above and beyond the call of duty and I will never forget your kindness and patience with them.

Kosta Malaperdas: Your encouragement and your ability to shut out distractions to get your work done was also an inspiration. Your friendship and good humour also made long days a lot more tolerable and your inner light will always be a beacon to others.

Vincent Turcotte and Stephane Goyette: If you haven’t yet had the opportunity to work with either of these two gentlemen, you are missing out. Their energy and technical acumen is beyond reproach, and Goyette’s dedication to his hockey-training program has borne fruit for me. Both are great trainers and I always enjoyed taking a few minutes to watch them in action to steal stuff from them down the road. After all, imitation is the sincerest form of flattery.

Pandemic Viewing Guide:

Greatest Events of World War II in Full Colour is the name of the series I’m watching, but admittedly I just call it WW2. There are two such series available on Canadian Netflix, but I feel like this is the better of the two series, combining interviews with veterans, historians, newsreel footage taken from historical context and restored in colour.

I just can’t get enough. I never thought I’d be quite so interested in this stuff, but I’m utterly captivated by the 10-part series. I’ve watched the darn thing over and over a couple of times and I always learn something new. It’s a great watch (because the quote-unquote ‘good guys’ win) but also because of the strength of the content. We have not experienced a conflict on that level since, and there’s a good reason why. Warmongering Facebook uncles take note. This series does not glorify war. Just the opposite, in fact, laying out the case against armed conflict by simply recounting some of the facts of the conflict. Go watch the damn thing.

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