Thursday, September 21, 2006

AMHL Thursday: Keith Tkachuk and the Caveman Diet

I’m sitting at my desk typing while I chew on my salad—mezclun mix, carrots, grilled chicken, and almonds (no dressing)—still digesting this morning’s game against Aaron Sherman and the Avalanche. We, the Capitals, gave away the game on the proverbial silver platter, allowing the Avs to score with two seconds in regulation time to tie the score and then again with about 20 seconds in OT.

A few minutes ago, I went to hockeystation.com to read what people are saying about the Bruins. I learned that Blues’ owner, Dave Checketts, guaranteed a victory against the Bruins in St. Louis on October 17, the home-opener. That triggered this thought: at least Keith Tkachuk will be in shape. As you may be aware, the Melrose (MA) native showed up to camp last year way overweight, failing his physical.

I had read in the Sunday Boston Globe (while at Dunkin’ Donuts) that Tkachuk reported to camp this year much more of an endomorph, so I went to the Internet to uncover the details; I found a story in the St. Louis Dispatch by Jeremy Rutherford. If you don’t want to read the whole story, here’s a synopsis.

Keith (who goes by Walt, even though Keith is not related to ex-Ranger Walter Tkaczuk) has been a good boy, adhering—for the most part—to what his trainer, Nelson Ayotte, calls a “caveman” diet (“if it doesn't run, fly, swim or bleed, you don't eat it.”), flipping a 550-pound tire (23 times in 90 seconds), and walking the “farmer’s walk” (running a 40-meter dash with 125 pounds in each hand).

Tkachuk says that although he's leaner, he's also lighter, adding that he'll be ticked if he gets knocked down. But Ayotte has continued to remind his charge--and now me--that it’s not important that we stumble, as Tkachuk did last season and my team did against the Avalanche, but rather how we respond to adversity.

I hope Tkachuk has a great season—against teams other than the Bruins. And I won’t guarantee an AMHL Capitals’ victory against the Bruins next Thursday, but I’ll let you know how we do. Gotta get back to my salad.

10/22/06 Editor's Note: Apologies to the Tkachuks and Tkachzuks for originally reporting that that Keith was Walter's son.
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