Finding our Tribe


Recently we did a morning presentation in Kitchener, Ontario,  we normally don’t do mornings as I’m not what you would call a “morning person”.  I don’t know my own name until after my second cup of coffee. Morning presentations also mess up Gerry’s daily workout schedule. Still we were up at 5:30 to get ready to battle the traffic, that is something I haven’t missed since I left the corp.. In the end though the early start was well worth the effort.

The audience we met was a special group of individuals who wake up and head to the local pool, many daily. This was a group I could connect with, the audience was made up by a group of people that was working to maintain a healthy lifestyle which included an early morning workout at the local pool. Each week after their workout they would attend a presentation from people like me on various topics. What a great idea exercise, education and a coffee to boot. Continue reading “Finding our Tribe”

Find An Adventure

VLR Boot camp Week #7

Starting Weight               (237lbs)

Current Weight               (236 lbs) finally down 1 with only 36 more to go!

If I am going to hit my goal by the end of October, I need to step things up a bit. Also I have no more excuses as summer weather is finally here.  I brought my bike up from the basement and now ride to most places instead of using the car. I am riding to swim class, to the post office to mail out copies of the book, to a nearby farm to pick up fresh produce as well as visiting my mother at the nursing home. The added benefit of spending so much time on the bike is that I save wear and tear on the car and gas money a true double bonus! Continue reading “Find An Adventure”

VLR Bootcamp Breakthrough

I was out for a run/walk with the Contessa earlier in the week and bumped into a friend of ours who was out walking her dog. During our short conversation she said it was nice to see us out running again, after all we have had a three-year absence, she remarked, unsolicited I should point out, that I looked like I had lost some weight. You have no idea how sweet that sounded to me. The benefits from VLR Boot camp were starting to finally show and this positive reinforcement was all that I needed to get me through my workout. My attitude is much better and I’m starting to look forward to the workouts, things are starting to turn. Continue reading “VLR Bootcamp Breakthrough”

Best Way To End A Nightmare Is To Wake Up

It’s starting to happen. Many boomers are waking up and are unwilling to follow the traditional retirement status quo. They are unwilling to blindly follow and do what everyone else before them has done. They refuse to allow themselves to be defined by someone else’s expectations of what they should do or not do at a certain age. They feel an urge to finally break free and express who they really are. They want to work at something that gives meaning and purpose to their lives. All I can say is it’s about time! Continue reading “Best Way To End A Nightmare Is To Wake Up”

Victory Lap Lifestyle Profile #3

It’s Never Too Late

Active Retirement and HobbiesMany people have heard the story about Grandma Moses who started painting when she was seventy-five years old and still managed to have a twenty-six-year career. Stories like hers seem so distant, so outside the realm of possibility, that it is hard to relate to. That is why I love the following story which was provided to me by our publicist Debby, below is her personal account of how her husband followed his passion and created a dream Victory Lap. A story like this is close to home so it takes on a whole new meaning. Enjoy! Continue reading “Victory Lap Lifestyle Profile #3”

Victory Lap Retirement: Live Your Best Life Now!

“It’s my life

It’s now or never

I ain’t gonna live forever

I just want to live while I’m alive”

-It’s My Life by Bon Jovi (fellow boomer)

I’m thinking about using the above song as our Victory Lap Retirement (VLR) rallying cry, it’s simple, gets the point across and who doesn’t like Bon Jovi? Please note the absence of the word “retirement” in the lyrics. The song reminds us that now, not tomorrow, is the time to take back control of our life and start living the way that we always wanted to but going through “The Big Dip”  never had the time or chance. Continue reading “Victory Lap Retirement: Live Your Best Life Now!”

Victory Lap Question – When You Retire Where Do All Your Friends Go?

This question comes up at many presentations I make on Victory Lap Retirement. A strong social network is key to our happiness and longevity. Friendships enrich our lives we should always look to build our social network and build relationships with people we care about.

The challenge for all of us is that we are so busy working and nurturing our family, we can sometimes underinvest in our friendships. Our relationships with friends can also suffer when we are stressed out and in some cases pull back from friends, after all who wants to be a “downer” to our friends Continue reading “Victory Lap Question – When You Retire Where Do All Your Friends Go?”

Hard Way vs.  Smart Way

One of the mistakes I made transitioning into my own Victory Lap was that I didn’t take any time off to regroup and refresh. I was suffering from “sudden retirement shock”. I wasn’t thinking clearly and I did what I always do when things are going off side, I roll up my sleeves and worked harder. I decided to go into full new business mode, I spent the better part of three years in a cave writing a book and trying to figure things out. Sure things worked out well in the end but it took a lot of time, researching, learning what I needed to know and now looking back I realize that it really didn’t have to be as hard as it was.

I also have a bad habit of always going it alone,  something I developed while working at the Corp., a John Wayne thing. I believed that asking for help was a weakness and it made me look vulnerable. I always took the hard way and would try and figure it all out by myself. That kind of thinking resulted in me not creating and benefitting from mentors. This was a major mistake I made in my career. Life could have been so much easier if only I had been more open minded and willing to ask for help and advice. Continue reading “Hard Way vs.  Smart Way”

Learn to Play The Long Game

Today’s article is the first in a series written by Simon Chan who started his own VLR earlier this year after working for 20 years in the financial services industry. He has a broad base of experience with the subjects of pre-retirement and financial independence having worked in multiple businesses such as banking, wealth management, insurance and group retirement benefits. Most recently Simon was the head of business strategy for the Canadian Retail Business for a global insurer. In his role, he became interested in how technology, globalization and the rapidly changing environment is impacting the lives of millennials. In short Simon knows his stuff, is a great guy and wants to help.

I believe it’s important that we understand the new challenges that will be faced by our kids and grandkids in the years ahead. It won’t be easy but we can succeed if we all work together. -Mike  Continue reading “Learn to Play The Long Game”