Be Sisu Fit

The art of courage, grit and perseverance

What Does Sisu Mean?

"Extraordinary determination, courage, and resoluteness in the face of extreme adversity. An action mindset that enables individuals to reach beyond their present limitations, take action against all odds and transform barriers into frontiers. An integral element of Finnish culture and also a universal capacity that we all share". Sisu Lab

"Sisu begins where perseverance and grit end. It is the ‘second wind’ of mental toughness after the individual has reached the limits of their observed mental or physical capacities. Emilia Lahti

With Be Sisu Fit, you will learn how to transform your mental strength into extraordinary physical strength and exceed what you thought was possible in your life.

Cycling in the mountains

Enduring in the face of a challenge

Do you know what you want to accomplish?

Do you want to achieve the best health and fitness in your life? Maybe it's a race you'd finally like to participate in. Perhaps you want to clock in the best race in your life. Maybe it is that you want are sick and tired of not getting any faster, even though you train harder and harder.

 

Maybe you are ready to throw in the towel and say: I'm just getting older, I can't get any faster. My best years are gone. 

Maybe you've dedicated your life to taking care of others, and it's finally your time to take care of yourself.

 

You've tried to stay motivated, you've used a random plan from the internet that worked for a while, but now you are stuck and you feel frustrated.

 

Maybe you just don't seem to be able to stay active in your everyday life, and you've realized it's time to get help. 

Maybe you're like many others and sick of the Covid-19 lifestyle, increasing waistline, less energy, and less pep in your step.

 

Life just seems to run away at increasing speed and you are not feeling it. You're stuck in the rat race of life and you want out. 

You Just Need to Find Your Way of Moving

I've dedicated my life to elevating peoples' lives through the joy of movement, whether it is endurance sports or general health and fitness. Running, skiing, triathlon, adventure racing, a combination of everyday fitness with an occasional race sprinkled in the mix.

 

Everyone has their favourite way of moving that brings joy to them. If you say "But I hate running, I don't think I like any sports", I say: "There is a way of moving for you, it does not have to be running. You just need to find it". 

How I can help you

Our coaching service is for you who want to discover your full potential and become Sisu Fit, in the best shape of your life! 

I've worked with high-level executives to help them find a balance in their lives. They come back to me telling me how running and training, and taking time for themselves have changed their lives for the better. They have better clarity during their day, make better decisions and transfer the learnings from training into their business. 

I've worked with moms who have struggled to take time for themselves to set new goals and challenges outside their family lives. New challenges for themselves to stretch towards, to challenge themselves. And they come back to me saying the time away from the family has given them a new perspective, and more energy and they come back home happier and more satisfied. They feel like they are a better mother and wife after challenging themselves and taking the time for themselves.

I've worked with athletes of all ages. One of my most incredible experiences as a coach has been to coach one of my athletes in his late 60s and to see him get faster when he thought he could not get any faster on skis. 

I welcome you to book a free discovery call. Let's chat about you and how I can help you reach your goals... big and small!

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Hi, I am Marjaana Rakai

Owner, Coach Be Sisu Fit Inc &

Tired Mom Runs

MSc Sports Science

NASM Personal Trainer

GGS Women's Coaching Specialist

Triathlon Canada Community Trained Coach

Lifelong athlete (Nordic Skiing, Track&Field, Road Running, Triathlon)

Mother of Three 

Expatriate since 1998

Want to learn more about.. 

Intensity

How to train for your endurance events without overtraining, burning out, or plateauing. How to integrate any training plan so it fits into your life and your circumstances.

Strength Training

How to strength train so it complements your endurance training and prevents muscle and bone loss as you age, and improves your overall performance. 

Nutrition

How to use nutritional strategies to aid with your endurance training. Learn how you can maximize your potential with sports nutrition and healthy habits.

Mindset

Break through your self-limiting beliefs and learn to work with your unlimited mental power, and use simple strategies in your daily life and in sports.

Training does not have to be complicated. There really are no magical workouts. 

Here are the cornerstones that all training programming should be based on: 

  • Intensity

Right intensity for you and your current situation! Most people train way too hard. We've bought into the Go Hard or Go Home mentality. Frankly, it is not working for us! I help you to identify the correct intensity zones for you and how to gauge and identify your intensity for your training. The overall distribution of intensity also depends on what you want to accomplish and in what training cycles, or menstrual cycle you are in. More on that later. 

  • Strength Training

Yes, I believe everyone should be in strength training! For both health and performance. I design strength training programs to elevate your health and optimize your fitness!

  • Nutrition

Possibly the most confusing topic when it comes to training. I don't do weight loss programs, but rather help you identify areas where you can use nutritional tools to optimize your training and race-day nutrition. 

  • Mindset

20% of success is physical, and 80% is mental. You cannot build a stable house with 3 legs, and mindset is the fourth when it comes to a successful training program. So much of the training test our mental capacities, and I am here to help you with yours. 

Using a variety of tools, you will learn how to use these cornerstones in your training. My goal is to teach you what I know and how to make it work for you. Eventually, you will be able to take your training into your very capable hands. Some athletes stay with me for a few months, and some stay for years. It is all up to you, and I strive to share my knowledge so that you feel comfortable to keep training on your own for years to come. 

DO THE BASIC STUFF REALLY WELL...

I don't believe in one miracle workout. I don't believe you should feel like trash to progress and reach your ambitious goals. I don't believe you should go to the well every single time you train. In fact, most of the time I have to hold back my athletes. I don't believe in achieving a perfect balance between work, social life, family and training. It's an impossible equation for most people. I believe in taking a periodized approach, focusing on certain aspects of your life, and being ok to leave other areas with less attention for a while. 

 I believe there are many ways to Rome. 

Most training programs you find online will work for you for a while. What you get with an individualized approach is the support and motivation that comes from being held accountable, being supported and being able to talk about your training with someone who cares. Someone who is invested in you succeeding as much as you are. 

Heck, not many people in your life will want to talk about you, your training and how you are feeling and thinking about training. Your wife/hubby/partner doesn't care. They don't want to listen to you talk about how you had to take a pit stop in the middle of your run. Or how you nailed your intervals. And that's ok! 

But I do. When you have me as your coach, you don't just get an individual training program. You get a caring coach, who gives you guidelines on how to train, changes things up when it is needed, when life happens, when you or your kid gets sick, without making you feel bad about it. I care about how your life is affecting your training. I care about how you feel about training. I understand sometimes it is difficult to fit everything in and that sometimes it is training that needs to go. 

And I love to talk about your training. In fact, you will get to talk about your training with me every two weeks for 45 mins. That is our coaching call time. It is your time to ask me any questions, tell me what you are wondering about. That is our time to build a relationship with each other that is based on mutual respect, honesty and inspiration. Because I get inspired by my athletes so often it is really what I love about coaching calls. 

I believe that when you do the basic stuff really well, you will succeed. Staying consistent is the key. But how do you achieve consistency? Most people do their everyday training too hard and end up struggling to show up the next day, or they feel too fatigued to do the intervals at high intensity. By just slowing down a little bit, you are working on improving your physiological parameters, while allowing your body to recover faster, so that you can nail your training the next day, and the day after and the day after. Also by learning to listen to your body, and allowing yourself to take a day off when needed, let your body absorb the training and grow stronger. Training does require courage, but it is a different kind of courage than what most people think. It is the courage to go easy enough, not chasing and passing the "rabbits". 

What works for Nelly, may not work for Lizzy. I take an individual approach to each and every athlete. I coach the individual in front of me, not based on gender, age, sport, what they do for a living. I've coached athletes as young as age 14 to matured veterans in their 70s. Men and women. Runners, skiers, bicyclists, triathletes and in general fitness. I hold a Master's degree in Sports Science, National Academy of Sports Medicine Personal Trainer Certification, I am also certified Women's Coach by Girls Gone Strong, Sports Nutrition Specialist, and Triathlon Canada Community Trained Coach.

But I've also been a lifelong athlete raising my bar in XC skiing, alpine skiing, track & field, road running, marathons and most recently Ironman distance Triathlon. I am also a mom of three, wife to an amazing husband who loves to golf, surf and train x-fit. We have lived on 4 different continents, 6 countries in the last 12 years and are raising future athletes and world citizens. 

I currently coach women and men in the following areas: Running, Skiing, Triathlon, Post-Partum Getting Back to Exercise (check out women-specific offering at www.tiredmomruns.com), Swimming and strength & conditioning for youth. I am open to new 1-on-1 online coaching clients, but I only work with a handful of athletes any given time, so that I can give them the time and attention they deserve. Enquire today by contacting me today using the below form.

Yours in fitness, Marjaana

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I've helped men and women all around the world...
 

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I've been coached by Marjaana for 16 months now and I've dropped 30 minutes in 30K distance race here in Whistler. It's been a lot of hard work, but I've also received a lot of great guidance. Being coached means that you are being held accountable for what you are doing. She makes adjustments along the way, looks at the progress and you get updated program depending on the progress. 

One thing with Marjaana is that she will tell you to go slow. And it is the hardest thing to do. You are skiing along, and in head of you, there is someone that you know you could catch up with and pass them. But then you hear this little voice in the back of your head that says: "Go slow, go slow, I promise you, you'll go faster..." 

So make sure you listen to the woman from the desert when she says "Go Slow" that you go slow because soon enough you will go faster!"

Craig, Whistler

Snowy Mountain
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Kristel, Dubai

"The techniques to strengthen my core has been MASSIVE help. Whenever my back starts acting up, I do the exercises and feel immediately stronger in the area. Marjaana has helped me realize that I CAN GET BACK into a fitness program and stick to it.

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Lisa, Canada

Before I worked with Marjaana I was at a standstill with my training. I had gotten back into running and even completed a half marathon; but just couldn't seem to be able to run the entire 21.1km; even on race day.

 

When I connected with Marjaana she inspired me to see that I could do more. She is positive and encouraging and works with you to bring you towards your goals. Next thing I knew I ran 21km without any walking and it seemed so easy. I took 9min off my half marathon time and I feel like this is just the beginning.

 

Marjaana has helped me get excited about my running potential and I can't wait to see the next training plan. 

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Kennet, Italy

For many years, I wanted to explore what I could accomplish with a structured training plan, but I was stuck with random exercises squeezed in a busy family/work schedule. This habit didn’t take me anywhere and it was simply not enough for me anymore. Working with a coach was something that I never tried before, but I decided to sign up with Marjaana and give it a try.

I can honestly say that I’m in better shape than I have ever been and that feeling is awesome. Marjaana is a good listener, she is positive and her knowledge in physiology and sports science is way beyond my expectations. Due to her own long-term experience in sports, she is also able to share her own experience.

It has truly been a positive journey working with Marjaana. Thank you for helping me reach my goals.

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Cecilia, Norway

Being a working twin mom has always made it tough to prioritize working out. This was until I hired Marjaana as my coach. She analyzed my situation and my goals. Weekly she provides programs - just for me - and she follows up each work-out. This has led to a shift in my life. Now - I have time for family, work and training. And I'm reaching my goals and I have more energy!

Get in Touch

Got a question, comment or just a quick note to send?

I'm thrilled! I read every note,  and do my best to reply promptly within 48 hours. Your note is important to me, so if you do not hear back from me, that means I did not receive your note, so please do send it again! 

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