Meet Tim Blake, Niseko's Super Fit Dad
Super Fit Dads founder Tim Blake speaks with Experience Niseko on the benefits of running a business and staying healthy in Niseko.
Tim Blake is not your average dad. At 45, he lifts more, runs faster, and has more energy than he ever did in his 20s. In his own words, Tim went from being "a lazy slob" in his mid-20s, to a "martial arts and cycling nut" in his 30s, to a dad in his 40s – a point in his life that has him feeling "stronger than [he] ever felt possible".
Naturally, Niseko has played an important role in Tim's transformation. From engineer to super fit dad, his journey began back in 2006 during his first snowboarding holiday to to the resort. "Something just clicked", he says, and on the first day back in the office he handed in his resignation.
10 years on, and Tim is running Super Fit Dads out of his home office, coaching and inspiring fathers of Niseko and beyond – many of whom he reaches via his online business (superfitdads.com).
His message is fairly simple: it's never too late to get in shape, and there's no better time to start than now. In our short exchange with Tim, it became very evident that he lives, breathes and believes in the philosophy behind his work (and lifestyle). Like many of us, he has also fallen in love with Niseko, a place that he says "provides the lifestyle and is a great place to bring up children".
Fittingly, we caught up with him minutes before he sped off to a Prowler (sled pushing) training session up in the Hirafu 1 car park!
Experience Niseko: What was it that brought you to Niseko?
Tim: Weird as it sounds, disappointing snow conditions in Fernie, B.C. back in January 2005 – we were there for a 14-day holiday and it rained a lot then froze to boilerplate. That’s when my (Japanese) wife mentioned some place called Niseko...
EN: Were there any particular moments that inspired you to make the change from engineer to small business owner?
Tim: The following winter, we came to Niseko and something just clicked. The first day back in the office I handed in my resignation.
EN: What is it about Niseko that makes it conducive to setting up a business like Super Fit Dads?
Tim: First and foremost, Niseko attracts people who like to be fit, healthy and enjoy an active lifestyle. Strength coaching (which I do in person) dovetails perfectly with that. It’s also a great base for the online side of things with my remote clients and ebook sales. Niseko provides the lifestyle and a great place to bring up children, and the Internet provides almost unlimited reach and opportunity.
EN: As the owner of Super Fit Dads, what does your day generally involve?
Tim: Mornings are devoted to coaching clients – I get up around 4.30am and am in the gym before six. After that, you’ll find me at my computer: writing content for the Super Fit Dads website, promotion, looking after remote clients, taking care of e-mails, and doing dad-type things.
EN: Your favourite outdoor activities here?
Tim: I love spending time with my wife and two young sons, so it would have to be camping in summer and hitting Hirafu for the “nighter” in winter.
EN: What do you think about the cuisine here in Niseko? Where would you go for a good, healthy meal?
Tim: I love the seasonality of the local produce and I’m a huge venison fan, so it would have to be Shunsai down in Kutchan. But in reality, there’s no such thing as a “healthy” or “unhealthy” meal – ultimately, that all depends on the amount being eaten and the context in which it’s being consumed.
EN: How have Niseko locals responded to the business? Do you find that people over here are generally living a healthy lifestyle?
Tim: Very positively – I’m strength coaching in-person six days a week and when people experience the incredible results, they tend to tell their friends and it snowballs from there (no pun intended). It’s so gratifying when people tell me how profound an effect being stronger has on their winter sports, summer activities and life in general.
EN: What advice would you give to someone looking to get in shape for a skiing or snowboarding trip?
Tim: The best training or exercise program (these aren’t the same thing) is the one you can stick to, so choose something you enjoy doing. And the sooner you get started, the better - don’t leave it until the week before you hit the slopes.
EN: Any Niseko local secrets that you'd like to share?
Tim: BCC White Rock is a great place to duck into for a sandwich/pizza and a cup of coffee (contrary to popular belief, it’s perfectly possible to consume things like this and still be in great shape).
For more information about Tim, visit superfitdads.com.