Social Climber: Prioritizing the priorities

08 - Don RiverFiguring out where to meet Sarah was by far the biggest challenge for my Week 9 #KiliHikeTO.

Sarah and I went back and forth over Email all week long trying to find a rendezvous point for the Lower Don Recreational Trail – the official name for the path than runs north from Toronto’s waterfront alongside the Don Valley Parkway.

We settled on the Queen Street Bridge which spans the Don River and serves as the gateway to social media savvy Leslieville. In case you want to do this hike, there are stairs on the bridge that lead down to the trail.

The forecast for Sunday morning was rain, but we lucked out and experienced a perfect day for a 15km hike through a surprisingly picturesque valley. As a non-native Torontonian, I’m constantly amazed by the inner-city beauty that Toronto possesses. Unfortunately, these trails and ravines are not heavily promoted by the City and they can often be a challenge to find.

Sarah and I have interacted on Twitter for a while. We are both recovering journalists turned social media pros. I use the term “pro” loosely, but we both collect a paycheque for executing social media for large brands so I feel that it is an appropriate term.

I should add that we both work in industries that are generally frowned upon by the general public. This made for some interesting chatter during our three hour hike. Unfortunately for you, dear reader, what is said on the trail stays on the trail!

08 - Lower Don Trail

I must applaud Sarah for joining me on Easter Sunday morning. Not only did she wake up at the crack of dawn, but she traversed the city for nearly an hour via streetcar for our adventure. That takes commitment.

As I promised Sarah on Twitter that morning, by 12pm she’d be thankful that she started her day with some moderate physical activity. Turned out, I was right. There’s nothing quite like spending three hours outside, walking, talking and steering clear of digital distractions (for the most part). As self-described social media nerds, we did post the odd Tweet or Instagram photo.

My only regret, is that I forgot to shoot the obligatory photo of me and my hiking partner. Sorry Sarah!

I also had the chance to try out my inReach satellite device for the first time. Thanks to the folks at Roadpost, I’ve been able to test drive this fantastic gadget in advance for our climb.

08 - inReachThe inReach allowed me to send Tweets and Facebook posts with geo-location tagging. This will allow our troupe to provide updates to friends and family while on Kilimanjaro.

The interactive map with breadcrumbs worked well. This will be useful for people following the #Climb4Cord. They’ll be able to see our position, which will be updated on the map every 10 minutes as the device pings the satellite.

Followers will be able to send us messages from these points. The messages are delivered to the climbers via iPhone as the inReach pairs with a smartphone device via Bluetooth.

As I start to get the physical preparation for the climb under control, the biggest challenge I’m facing for the #Climb4Cord is time management.

I’m finding that I have increasingly more demands on my time and it is hard to manage everyone’s expectations. I’m also guilty because I like to take part in every opportunity that presents itself, but I have to continue to remind myself of what is important.

To play off of former Canadian Cabinet minister David Dingwall’s “I’m entitled to my entitlements” rant, I need to remind myself that I have to prioritize my priorities.

Fortunately, I have an extremely supportive family and the best wife in the world who does the little things to help me out each day.

08 - Full Blast Personal TrainingFor example, Jess prepared a healthy lunch for me late Monday night while I was off at the gym working on endurance training with Marshall Tully. It is these little things that often go unnoticed, yet matter the most.


Speaking of training, I’ve started to increase my training sessions with Marshall. In addition to strength sessions on Saturday morning, we’ve added a Monday night endurance session.

This past Monday, we tested out some new exercises in a very aggressive session. Since I have received some questions about how I am training, I have included Monday night’s session here:


  • Set 1: Boxing on focus pads, aprx. 90 seconds –> 10 knees to pads, per side
  • Set 2: Boxing on focus pads, aprx. 90 seconds –> 10 squats/punching combination
  • Set 3: Boxing on focus pads, aprx. 90 seconds –> 10 high kicks to pads, per leg

Rest about 45-60 seconds between rounds


  • Sets 1-5: 20 seconds of work with 10 seconds of rest between sets

C. BARBELL THRUSTERS (squat into overhead press)

  • Sets 1-3: 10 reps followed by brisk walk on treadmill, 60 seconds

Rest about 20 seconds between rounds


  • Sets 1-3: 12 spins per side (Video Example)
  • Sets 1-3: 12 medicine ball tosses

Rest about 30 seconds between rounds

08 - Bulgarian Bag


  • Three times up and down 72 stairs while wearing a 40 lbs. weighted vest with no rest between sets

08 - Weight Vest


  • Sets 1-3: 10 reps per set, increasing weight each set

08 - Chest Press

Rest about 30 seconds between rounds


  • Sets 1-3: 12 reps for rotator cuff rehab
  • Sets 1-3: 10 reps leg circles on equalizer bars

08 - Leg Circles

Rest about 30 seconds between rounds


  • Approximately 10 minutes


There’s no rest for the wicked these days as I was back in the gym on Tuesday with my colleague, Erik. His youthful enthusiasm is infectious and he pushed me through some challenging leg workouts even thought I was exhausted from Monday night.

The rest of this week is pretty normal, but the weekend is ramping up to be a ton of fun. Chris Grimley and I are running #BeerHikeTO on Saturday night. The full schedule has now been posted. We’ll hit up five bars, starting at C’est What? at 5pm. Shout out to WVRST, our final destination, for being especially helpful during our planning.

Don’t forget to sign up and join me for a hike. Just because someone is already signed up, don’t let it deter you from joining us to make a larger group.

Finally, I’m pleased and proud to announce that thanks to your help, I’ve been able to reach my goal of $12,000 raised for the #Climb4Cord. Since nearly 180 days still remain until our climb up Mt. Kilimanjaro, I’m setting a new goal of $15,000. Thanks to everyone who has donated so far!

The #Climb4Cord features a group of business leaders who will be climbing Mt. Kilimanjaro in August 2013 with the hopes of raising $750,000 for the campaign For All Canadians, which is dedicated to building Canada’s new national public cord blood bank. Click here to donate to my personal page or for more information on the campaign please visit:

About Jaime Stein

Jaime is the Senior Manager, Social Media at Hootsuite. He is a digital marketer with expertise in social media and content marketing. His experience stems from leading the social media strategy for two national brands. Jaime holds an MBA with a focus in Marketing and Strategy from the Rotman School of Management where he was selected valedictorian by the students of the Morning MBA Class of 2011. He is the former radio voice of the Toronto Argonauts and currently lives in Vancouver with his wife and two sons.
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