Origin of the "Rhino" name
How Cris quit smoking and became a trainer
Where Cris trains


Rhino Fitness
Winnipeg, MB

Rhino Fitness Phone:
(204) 227 9967


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Who is Rhino Fitness?

Thanks for visiting my site, I hope my passion for learning about health and fitness and passing it on to others helps you in some way.

I have been coaching since 1987 and also enjoy athletic competition myself competing in road and mountain bike racing for the local Winnipeg bike shop team,Team Woodcock Cycle. I began my cycling coaching certification process in 1987 with the NCCP (National Coaching Certification Program) through Coaching Canada. My coaching license number is 232305.

I am an an associate of the Tudor Bompa Institute and am certified through the institute as Periodization Planning Specialist.

In addition to full time coaching, I occasionally am asked to offer my coaching expertise in assisting with exercise research. In 2006 I attended the American Thoracic Society International Conference in San Diego USA where the research team I was part of, lead by Dr. Sat Sharma, submitted the following research;

Proceedings of the American Thoracic Society Volume 3, April 2006

Spirometric Changes before and after Marathon Running. C. LaBossiere, A. Taylor, D. Moffat, P. Harnett, S. Sharma. University of Manitoba

Hypoxemia in Healthy Runners Following Marathon Race. P. Harnett, N. Marten, G. Eschun, C. LaBossiere, S. Sharma. University of Manitoba

Biochemical Markers of Cardiac Injury during and Following a Marathon Race. D. Moffat, C. Sathiannthan, P. Harnett, C. LaBossiere, S. Sharma. University of Manitoba

Significant Hyponatremia Does Not Occur Following Marathon Running. P. Harnett, C. LaBossiere, A. Schaffor, K. Wiebe, S. Sharma. University of Manitoba

I also assisted in research on exercise induced arterial hypoxemia, and how obesity may effect the diagnosis of asthma. I am intrigued by human performance and am very curious as to how the human body functions and adapts to various living habits, mostly how diet and exercise effects us.


I am a strong proponent of evidence and ethics based coaching where in order to prescribe exercise or diet recommendations a coach must have scientific evidence to justify the prescription, and that coaching ought to be delivered with the respect for others humanity and physical and emotional health. Fitness and sports should be fun, personally fulfilling, and part of developing the whole person.

Fat loss, muscle gain, quick fitness, and high performance programs are contaminated with hokum and unethical motives that typically use the promise of hope to promote them. It's disheartening to see just how much of the health and fitness industry is all about quick fixes and magic solutions without any concern for ethics or efficacy.

There is much to be learned about human physiology and the truth is there is more we don't know about adaptations to exercise than what we do know. We should limit our prescription of exercise and diet recommendations to encompass, but not replace, what the current peer reviewed scientific consensus is on such recommendations.

In practice there will always be the "leading edge" of research and coaching where understandings of human performance are unclear and in need of proper investigation. In these cases careful and ethical application of developing methods should made based on scientific evidence supporting the developing method while being wary of falling for or making the unjustified promise of hope.

Where did the name "Rhino" come from?

"Rhino" is a nickname I have had for about 24 years.

Where I train:

There are three gyms I do my own workouts in Winnipeg; the Assiniboine Athletic Club, YM-YWCA, and the Winnipeg Squash Racquet Club. When I visit Vancouver I train at the South Slope Y, the YWCA Downtown on Hornby, the Arbutus Club, and the Canada Games Pool in New Westminster. I have also trained at the Minneapolis YMCA while visiting there. While in Toronto I use the Downtown YMCA. I also have a Bowflex and some free weights at home.

For cycling I train 100% indoors all winter on a Kurt Kinetic Fluid trainer (a device that my racing bike attaches to). In the spring and summer months about 90% of my training is outdoors and 10% is on the trainer. I use the Lactate Pro, PowerTap Pro, and Polar 725X to monitor and measure my own training.

How I became a trainer

In my teens I took up a pack a day cigarette smoking for about 5 years-- a terrible habit that, ironically, drove me to live a healthy lifestyle.

At about age 17, I recall riding my 10-speed bike up Western Drive (on Mary Hill) in Port Coquitlam BC where I lived at the time. A kid no more than 10 years old passed me on his single-gear BMX bike. The gauntlet had been dropped so I sprinted past him. But the little germ-bag passed me again and this time I could not compete. In fact, I was thrown into a harsh coughing fit that forced me off my bike. After expelling a glob of black goo I was overwhelmed with fear. Smoking had really taken its toll on my health and I was not yet 20 years old.

This is the spot on Western Drive in Port Coquitlam BC. The picture on the left is the very spot the black goo came up! On the right is me tromping up the hill - no germ-bag in sight.. (Click on photo's to enlarge) Photo's taken August 2004

I went home and threw out my remaining cigarettes, lighters, ashtrays and anything to do with smoking. That day I quit smoking for good. Each time I had a craving for a cigarette, I rode my bike instead. I rode my bike a lot. Every day I rode, farther and faster, angry at how stupid I was to have smoked in the first place. Go to the Manitoba Lung Association or Canadian Cancer Society for more info on quitting smoking.

Eventually I no longer craved the cigarette… I now craved the bike ride. Within a few months I decided to try bike racing. To understand training and racing better, I enrolled in the NCCP Coaching Certificate course and become a certified cycling coach.

I have always been an information junkie so I bought up textbooks and researched journal issues on exercise so I could continue learning about training. I applied my new knowledge and worked with several athletes I knew. Within two years I had worked with two provincial cycling champions in BC and a few years later I had a steady stable of mountain bike racers. I continued to study and obtain various training certificates, the latest is becoming part of the Tudor Bompa team as a certified "Planning Specialist" through the Tudor Bompa Training System.

After a few years of training I became a very fit athlete myself. I have continued to compete in cycling to this day. I race for team Woodcock and also coach some of the teams top athletes. Click here to view some recent race pics, and here for team race results.

Coaching started as a volunteer part time hobby and eventually grew into Rhino Fitness. My passionate hobby became a serious endeavor and a full-time business. I still have that same passion today and I am grateful for being recognized as a leading professional coach.

A growing passion

About 10 years ago I came across a mall display on stopping racism. As I read the material my emotions turned. I was reading about slavery, segregation, and other human atrocities. It occurred to me that if I was so emotionally disturbed by these things, that I should do something about it.

I am disturbed by the fact the only time the issue of racial discrimination is "popular" is during Black History Month (February) and on March 21, the International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination. I hope that we can learn to be more mindful of how destructive discrimination is and what each person can do to be part of the solution and not part of the problem - and not just during February and March when it is fashionable to do so.

I can be contacted by any school or organization to do my presentation, "Identifying and Eliminating Discrimination" on a volunteer basis. Click Here for the two page hand out I use when discussing discrimination in high schools.


Copyright 2004 - 2010 Rhino Fitness. All rights reserved.
For more information contact: clabossiere@rhinofitness.ca

This page was last updated on January 7, 2010