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Dragon's Den (CBC) host Robert Herjavec works out at the Granite Club in Toronto. (JENNIFER ROBERTS/Jennifer Roberts for The Globe and Mail)
Dragon's Den (CBC) host Robert Herjavec works out at the Granite Club in Toronto. (JENNIFER ROBERTS/Jennifer Roberts for The Globe and Mail)

Deeper sleep would stoke this Dragon's fire Add to ...

Robert Herjavec

CEO, Internet security firm

Croatian-born Robert Herjavec, president and CEO of The Herjavec Group, a leading IT security firm, and panelist on CBC TV's Dragons' Den, is on course to run Harry's Spring Run-Off for the second year in Toronto next month. But running is only part of the 48-year-old's workout. Soon he'll get behind the wheel as a race-car driver and needs to be fit for speed.

My goal

"Energy. To maintain it I have to work out. And to keep me sane, fit and keep the weight down. I have my mother's hips. The minute I eat it, it ends up on my hips."

My workout

"I am a runner, but two marathons is taking its toll on my body, so now I vary it. I will be racing a Ferrari [458 Challenge]at the Montreal Grand Prix [in June]and Toronto Indy [in July] so I am trying to build more arm, neck and upper-body muscles. Six months ago I could not do a single chin-up, now I do 10 every workout."

A typical week

Run: "Five times per week, three sessions fast at eight- to nine-minute miles, two sessions slow at 10-minute miles, plus one long run per week on Sundays, usually eight miles."

Weight routine: "Four times per week for 40 minutes with multiple reps, little to no rest in between sets, always gearing up to more weight slowly every workout."

Cross-training: "One, 60-minute elliptical workout with the highest tension for the last half hour. I try to get in one, one-hour spinning class per week."

My lifestyle

"Everyone thinks I am all about parties and big charity galas - and I do a lot of those - but I am typically working at my real computer job or with my family.

"I balance my meals. I have never been a big dessert guy. I love fruit and salads. I don't smoke (cigars when golfing) and drink very little. I just don't sleep enough. But I have never met someone very successful who, at the end of their life, says 'I wish I slept more.'"

My motivation

"I am insanely busy - next week I am in six cities in five days - I can't keep up this pace without a high level of energy.

"I want to wring out every last drop of life I can, I want to play the game, I want to be the best I can be. If you don't have the energy you end up on the sidelines."

My anthem

"Everything from Eminem to Coldplay to U2. I create playlists that follow the flow of my workout - slow to start, intense, back down and so on."

My challenge

"To continue to have energy."


Add a neck workout

Clance Laylor, fitness trainer at Laylor Performance in Toronto, conditions professional athletes for hard-hitting sports and says a race-car driver's neck muscles must withstand G force when rounding corners at high speed.

"Robert needs a strength program to keep his head straight and his eyes focused on the road and should do the neck bridge on a Swiss ball in eight-second holds for six to 10 reps, three times a week."

Boost performance overnight

Because Mr. Herjavec admits he lacks adequate sleep, Mr. Laylor suggests taking supplements that can set the conditions for a deeper sleep by regulating the body's nerve and muscle tone.

"Robert should take magnesium and zinc before bed to get quality sleep, which benefits his thinking, performance, health and longevity. He'll feel the relaxing effect of magnesium working on the first night."

This interview has been condensed and edited.

Special to The Globe and Mail

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