TJ's Gym Weekly News 06/07/2019


My new vitamin D habit.

Check out this week’s message and my take on the importance of real, actual Vitamin D, not the supplement kind. Just in time for Summer!


Message from TJ:

Vitamin d Levels and supplementation

Now that I'm 50 (!), I know that I've got to start getting my stuff in order. Like going to doctors, because that's what old people do.

My first visit was to a dermatologist. Allison went first, and she was told that as a dark-complexioned person, she really had nothing to worry about.

"It's not like you're, I don't know, Irish," her doctor had told her.

I made an appointment for the following week.

I was a little nervous. People I knew had recently gotten chunks of their face and head removed, and I was pretty sure I had messed myself up in some way or another with the sun.

After a thorough once over (and a solidly embarrassing photo journaling of my entire body by his barely 20-year-old assistant) he announced, "You're good!"

Huh. How about that?

Somehow, someway, I asked about skin cancer incidence in guys my age, and he told me an interesting fact. Marin County has the largest number of skin cancer cases out of all the counties in California. Marin is a popular place for former Northeasterners, many of whom suffered a traumatic sunburn event in their youth, and that is the major contributor to most skin cancer diagnoses

"Do a lot of people die from it?" I asked.

"Nah." he said.  

Nah? From my limited education on skin cancer deaths via the media, I was convinced that people were dying like my grass after I blew up my sprinkler timer control because I thought the electrician was too expensive.

I came across a great article in Outside magazine called "Is Skin Cancer the New Margarine?" by Rowan Jacobson.

I realize that skin cancer is dangerous, and this article does highlight that too much sun could very well give you cancer. But dying from it? It's around .0027%. For every one person who dies of skin cancer, 100 people die from cardiovascular disease.

The point of the article was to talk about the facts of having sun on our bodies.

Here are a few:

-Tanner people have few cases of skin cancers.

-People who spent at least 30 minutes per day getting direct sunlight on their skin had lower cases of blood clots, diabetes, and blood pressure.

-Sun avoiders had twice the mortality rate.

The second point was about Vitamin D supplementation, you know, because the sun is bad and we need to stay out of it, so we need supplements

There are exactly zero studies that show Vitamin D supplements do anything other than raise your Vitamin D levels. Sounds good right? There's only one problem. Vitamin D receptors are found everywhere in the body. These specific receptors have been found to lower blood pressure and cholesterol, increase bone health, support autoimmune function, and regulate serotonin and dopamine, as well as a host of other things.  

The problem with the D supplement is that is doesn't affect the receptors. You just have higher levels in your blood. Which doesn't really do anything.  Mostly because it's not being converted into nitric oxide, but that's a whole other story.

I get a serious blood test every year and my D levels are always low. I joke that mostly likely all generational Irish and probably, Northern European folks, suffer from low D because, well, there's no sun and there hasn't been for thousands of years.

So I'm doing my own experiment. I've started going into the sun for 30 minutes per day without sunblock. When my skin gets a little red, I either cover up or put sunblock on.  

I'll share my results in six months.

The things I do for you people.


June 17th - August 17th


Get ready to keep up, and even improve on, your fitness while having a blast this Summer, even if when you can’t make it to the gym! All participants will be invited to a special BBQ at the end of the Summer. Bingo cards will be in the gyms this weekend!


1. Do all 50 items and get a TJ’s shirt.

2. You must get a coach to sign off on things that you do in the gym.

3. You must document dates and details of other items. We recommend a Google Doc, which you will be asked to share with us at the end of Summer.

4. Please post at least 5 of your accomplishments on the TJ’s Gym Facebook Members Page (not a member? JOIN NOW!)

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TEEN SUMMER FITNESS! Check out our specialized programs for sports teams.

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Registration IS ongoing FOR youth fitness!

See our full youth schedule below. Additional times available upon request.

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Corte Madera Teens (ages 12-16): Mondays / Wednesdays / Fridays 4-5pm*

*M/W/F are our more advanced teens

Corte Madera Teens Tuesdays/Thursdays 3:30-4:30 ages 13-15

Corte Madera Tweens Tuesdays/Thursdays 4:30-5:30 ages 9-12

Corte Madera Teens (ages 12-16): Saturdays 11am

San Rafael Teens (ages 12-16): Tuesdays/Thursdays* 4-5pm

Mill Valley Teens (ages 12-16): Tuesdays and Thursdays 4:00-5:00pm

Mill Valley Teens (ages 12 - 16) Wednesdays 4 pm

Corte Madera Kids (ages 4 - 6) Sundays 10:30 - 11:00 am

Corte Madera Kids (7 - 9) Sundays 11:05 - 11:50 am

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Running Strong: strength for endurance athletes

Join any time with our new flexible membership options!

Email with any questions.

Program Foundations:

•Injury prevention/Consistency

•Efficiency/Muscular Power



Coach Nick describes the changes coming to our Running Strong Program!


our legends CONTINUE TO INSPIRE US! Spread the word to your friends and family ages 60+.


We’d like to get as many 60+ year-olds in Marin moving as possible! Athletes can join at any time; we pro-rate based on start days.

We’d like to get as many 60+ year-olds in Marin moving as possible! Athletes can join at any time; we pro-rate based on start days.

You can always find updated announcements AND WEEKLY WORKOUTS on our HOME PAGE.