Finishing Strong With Club16 Trevor Linden Fitness

Club16 Trevor Linden Fitness

Disclaimer: I received compensation and services in exchange for sharing my honest experience with Club16 Trevor Linden Fitness.

Another year, another Vancouver Sun Run completed! If you’ve followed my fitness journey, you know I’ve been at this for 3 years now as a sponsored runner for The Vancouver Sun. This year, I also partnered up with Club16 Trevor Linden Fitness and let me tell you, I learned something so important about how I run that is a complete game changer.

club16 Trevor Linden Fitness

Getting ready for the Vancouver Sun Run this year was pretty typical! Week after week, I met with the InTraining group and did our usual runs. I felt the same struggles that I did every year, the shin splints, the runners’ stitch and all the other typical things runners experience.

I knew that running alone wasn’t going to be enough. I needed to strengthen some of the areas that help make running possible! There were muscle groups that aid in a successful run that were crying for help but I’m not as educated in that area and I personally learn better by being shown than by reading, so googling is not the best option for me!

 

It wasn’t until the last few weeks leading up to the run that I discovered how much I was in my own head. My mental block was strong this year! I was discouraged by the pain of those muscle groups that were underdeveloped and rather than push through the pain, I would stop. As I was unable to see the timers on my cell phone tucked away in my pouch, I’d give in to the pain. Finally, I purchased a Fitbit Inspire HR and found a bit more of the stamina I knew I had.

However, something still wasn’t right! When I first discovered my shin splints, I did a lot of research and I knew that cross training was going to help, but how? I went for a body & fitness assessment at Club16 Trevor Linden Fitness, where I met with the manager Cazimir. It’s never fun to get on a scale but this isn’t just any scale, this tells you all the information that a trainer will need to know to help put together a custom workout package just for you.

club16 Trevor Linden Fitness

Turns out, I was in better shape than I had realized. In fact, I had lost 10lbs since I began the InTraining program! So why did I still feel so off? One afternoon, I joined in on a group run with Club16 Trevor Linden Fitness the Friday before the run! Luckily for me on this day, due to the time of day the run was scheduled for, there was lower than usual participation, which allowed me some one-on-one time with the group leader.

So how did Club16 Trevor Linden Fitness Change the way I run?

After our warm up and stretches, I was just about to start my run when he asked this one simple question. A question that would be so pivotal for my running game and one that stopped me dead in my tracks. How many breaths in through my nose do I take in to footsteps?

Club16

My mind went blank and suddenly it dawned on me, I don’t actually breathe in at all through my nose when I run. My lungs and heart have been working overtime to get the oxygen it needs making my runs 1000x harder. I wouldn’t be able to fully catch my breath, I’d panic and then begin to hyperventilate.

Just like that, it all fell into place, the mystery of my struggle made sense. I should also mention that I do like to socialize and chat when I run so this made not breathing in through the nose thing especially difficult!

The hard part now is re-training myself to breathe in and really monitor my breathing. But thanks to Club16, I have identified one of my biggest struggles and I’ll be able to spend the down season training my breath to make Vancouver Sun Run 2020 truly amazing!

The knowledge that I gained from one running session with Club16 was game changing! Armed with this knowledge, I feel as though I can take on any run that comes my way, of course after a little bit more training! Thankfully with the guidance of Club16, my amazing trainer Caz and everything I learned through the SportMed InTraining clinics, this down season before The Vancouver Sun Run 2020 is going to be amazing!

club16 Trevor Linden Fitness

What are some of your fitness goals? Have you ever wanted to run a big run like the Sun Run but didn’t know where to start? Did you know that each year Club16 Trevor Linden Fitness has amazing group run sessions to help get you Sun Run ready?

Head into your closest Club16 Trevor Linden Fitness and see how they can help you today! Remember Knowledge is power and the trainers at Club16 want to share their knowledge to help you become the best possible you!

club16 Trevor Linden Fitness
One of my biggest supporters Kat from Our Happy Place Blog
club16 Trevor Linden Fitness
The Man who helped get my butt in gear, my trainer Caz

5 Earth Friendly Products Making Our World A Better Place

Earth Friendly Products

Disclaimer: We received products in exchange for inclusion in this post! These are all amazing earth friendly brands we truly love and as always, if I don’t love it, I don’t share it!

There is no doubt that global warming is a thing and we are creating some amazing earth friendly products. Our weather over the last few years has been wild and wacky all over the world! We’re seeing our lands diminish and our animals suffering due to our human footprint!

We’ve only just begun seeing a rise in earth friendly products that are making our world place and there is still so much we can be doing! After seeing the Douglas Copeland Exhibit at The Vancouver Aquarium last year, this has become a very important conversation in our home. “What else can we do mama?”

Hearing my youngest at the age of 2 ask me “where is the food waste bucket,” was a very proud mama moment! We recycle properly, we use reusable shopping bags and we reuse everything we possibly can but can we do better? Absolutely!

It’s not hard to be earth friendly, it’s not too inconvenient and all it takes is small adjustments to start making a difference. This next generation that we are currently raising deserve better and it starts with us teaching them. Just as my grandparents wanted a better life for their kids and grandkids, so do we!

Not only on earth day but every day thereafter, here are 5 of my favourite earth friendly products that are making the world a better place!

  1. Kliin– A reusable towel that is a cross between conventional paper towels and washcloths, made of 100% natural fibres.

Purchasing paper towel is one of the most frustrating purchases I make. Paper Towel is simply not necessary and not at all an earth friendly product. Replace your sponges and dishrags with this super cute heavy-duty hybrid.

One Kliin replaces the equivalent of 17 rolls of paper towels and absorbs up to 15 times its weight in water.  To disinfect, just put it in the dishwasher or toss it into a load of laundry. It can be washed up to 300 times before making its way into the composter, where it reverts to organic matter within 28 days.

These earth friendly products are gentle enough to use as a facecloth for children and tough enough to wash the car, or spruce up outdoor furniture.

Earth Friendly Products

Earth Friendly Products

  1. BK Naturals – Eco Friendly Toxin free Home Care and cleaning products!

Loralei the owner of BK Naturals is someone that I have admired for a very long time and a very dear friend She then went on to become one of my favourite superheroes; fighting germs and dirt with her handmade cleaning products and saving lives one toxic free cleaning product at a time!

This journey for BK Naturals started with the cancer diagnosis of both parents, so my friend Loralei dove into this journey with guns blazing! Determined to put an end to the nasty chemicals.

Loralei created this army of amazing eco-friendly cleaning products. BK Naturals is everything from laundry soap, dish soap, our favourite all-purpose cleaner and even a stain remover stick. These products truly work and make the world a better place!

Earth Friendly Products

  1. Abeego – Reusable Beeswax Wraps

I was first introduced to Abeego wraps when I received a sample in a swag bag for the grand opening of the new location for The Local Space in Langley. Next to purchasing paper towel, the next most frustrating purchases are saran wrap and reseal able plastic bags. Again those are products that are completely pointless and it’s literally throwing money away!

These reusable beeswax wraps are all natural, zero waste, and made to last! With having Ava in school, we saw how much waste we can produce when we’re not eating at home so packing Ava’s lunch in these reusable beeswax wraps is crucial!

Ava packs her sandwiches and any other little crackers in the Abeego reusable Beeswax wraps and the best part, she always brings them home!

Earth Friendly Products

  1. Seeding Square – The Smartest gardening tool you’ll ever have

If I’ve said it once, I’ll say it twice; I am a huge fan of Dragons’ Den and this amazing product recently received a deal from Lane Merrifield! This gardening tool helps to plan out your garden whether you have a large plot in your backyard or even a smaller box garden on your patio. With perfect spacing for optimal growth ensuring that no space is wasted, ensuring the highest yield possible. The best part, it makes spotting the weeds 1000x easier so that you’re spending more time making memories with the kids and less time pulling those annoying weeds that can stifle your growth!

The colored coded squares make it easy for kids of all ages to get involved and in my opinion, the younger the better! Simply press the square down into the soil, poke the holes and then plant the seeds! Before you know it you’ll be harvesting a beautiful crop of fresh veggies grown right in your backyard!

Earth Friendly Products

  1. gogoBags – Reusable bags

I know I’m not alone here with purchasing produce and having it go bad within days of coming home. Half the battle is obtaining quality fresh produce and the other half is keeping it from going bad right away! Thanks to gogoBags, another company making earth friendly products, the fruits and veggies you buy are now kept fresh and stored properly! This allows you to get the longest possible shelf life out of your veggies, leaving your money right where it needs to be (in your wallet).

Even better yet, grow your own veggies using the seeding square and really enjoy that hard work by keeping them fresher longer! But why are gogoBags so amazing? Not only are they easy to use, but also they are made locally right here in Canada and they come with a lifetime warranty! gogoBags are lined with 100% cotton so your food is only touching cotton and nothing else and can always breathe.

Earth Friendly Products

Earth Friendly Products

This is literally just the tip of the iceberg with earth friendly products. I want to help you get started on your earth friendly journey and so we’re giving away products from all of the companies involved in this post!

Enter below! One Canadian resident will win the following:

  • 1 bottle of the All purpose cleaner from BK Naturals (must pick up or pay for shipping)
  • 1 Variety Pack from Abeego
  • 1 Seeding Square
  • 2 printed sheets and 1 Roll from Kliin
  • 1 Reusable Salad Bag from gogoBags

earth day 2019

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Making Life Easier With The PC Insiders subscription program!

PC Insiders Subscription Program

This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of President’s Choice Services Inc. All opinions are 100% mine.

A few months ago when I signed up for the PC® Insiders subscription program, I never imagine how much easier my life would get! Signing up for the Annual PC® Insiders subscription is easily one of the smartest moves I’ve made in a while!  Become a PC® Insiders member- try one month free at pcinsiders.ca (Offer excludes Quebec residents; terms and conditions apply)! With free grocery pick-up, free shipping and all the extra indulgences things couldn’t get any better!

I signed up for the PC® Insiders subscription program because I genuinely have a love for PC® products. After seeing all the extra perks that I would get for signing up, it was a no brainer. Every Thursday morning, I see the new offers loaded to the PC Optimum app and I plan my weekly grocery shopping around what’s on sale and the PC Optimum points I can receive.

PC Insiders Subscription Program

Now with the PC® Insiders subscription program, I am getting 20% back in PC Optimum points on select brands, free shipping and grocery pick-up with PC Express™. I also receive 20% back in points when shopping all PC® Organics products (my favourite quinoa) and the PC® Black Label Collection products, and I take advantage of free shipping from joefresh.com because the girls LOVE their clothes. 

Furthermore, members enjoy 20% back in points on all brands of baby diapers and formula purchases at Loblaw banner stores, Shoppers Drug Mart and Pharmaprix. Did I mention that, as an annual member, I also received a $99 PC® travel services credit, and an annual SURPRISE GIFT featuring items PC® Insiders subscribers will love!

Grocery shopping can be quite the task with two young girls, everyone has a different idea of what should be going into the cart and now thanks to the PC® Insiders program, I can conveniently order my groceries without even leaving my kitchen! I also have freed myself of those pointless arguments with my girls of why I should not be buying broccoli.

PC Insiders Subscription ProgramOne huge advantage I found from ordering groceries online aside from pure convenience factor is that I save myself so much time! I am only purchasing what I need, so I don’t overspend! No more wandering up and down the aisles letting the food tempt me into impulse food purchases. Free grocery pick-up with PC Express™ has made grocery shopping much more intentional. Can I get a hallelujah?

The PC® Insiders subscription program has actually given me some of my life back as I have much more freedom. I can get the things I need when I need them and not have to worry about whether I will be dragging my kids along with me or whether I have enough time to actually get the shop done in the time allotted. Imagine planning dinner and realizing you’re missing a must-have item? No problem order it online and get free delivery right to your door, same day!

PC Insiders Subscription Program

I have so much more time and happiness in my life now as the perks from signing up for the PC® Insiders subscription program has helped me manage my time so much better. No more stress, no more arguing and I’m earning 20% more PC Optimum points on select brands to redeem towards free groceries!

It’s not just groceries; the PC® Insiders subscription program provides lots of benefits. With free shipping from JoeFresh.com and even ShoppersDrugMart.ca,  shopping is just a click away!

By now I know that you’re curious about how you can take advantage of all these amazing benefits from the PC® Insiders subscription program and honestly, it’s as easy as it sounds.  If you like saving money and living an easier life, head over to the PC® Insiders website and sign up today! Start taking advantage of these perks immediately except for the annual surprise gift for annual subscribers, which shows up sometime throughout the year! Who doesn’t love a good surprise?

Become a PC® Insiders member. Try one month free at pcinsiders.ca. (Offer excludes Quebec residents; terms and conditions apply.) It’s a great timesaving program you can invest in for your family. I know it’s helped me through a few jams with the kids in the last few months.  For my annual membership, the $99 subscription fee truly is priceless in my books! So why not? Head over today to sign up!

PC Insiders Subscription Program

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Why Taking “Mommy Time” Actually Makes You a Better Person!

mommy time

This post about taking mommy time was previously published, I updated it to reflect my current thoughts on taking mommy time and to update some links. This was actually one of the very first blog posts that I ever wrote!

I think taking Mommy time is so important, in fact, I know it is! I’m also aware that since Ava was born, I’ve said this but I have never really practiced what I preached.  This is from a book “100 Questions from my Child”, a book my mother had gotten me written by Mallika Chopra.

If you know a mom who is much like me, and never practices what they preach as for mommy time, stop by one day… kick her out for an hour and play with her children.  Bring a $10.00 gift card for starbucks..even better!

This piece in particular resonated with me and I wanted to share the answer Mallika gave her daughters about why she needs to mommy time with you. 

“Being a mother requires wearing many hats.  From managing the house, meals, bath time, nap time and bills, to balance work and relationships many days I find very few moments to even sit down.  Life with kids gets crazy, and there are times I feel I just can’t manage any more.  But the reality sinks in- as a mom, I can’t even let the craziness get to me!

Then there are those days when things are just more difficult.  There is a work deadline, no good in the house, the phone doesn’t stop ringing, the bills are late and I have a miserable headache.  Inevitably on such days, I find that my daughters, sensing my stress, also demand more attention, fight more, and are generally moody.

My daughters are used to the concept of my needing some mommy time, and my husband respects my need for it.  For me, finding some ME time every day has been life transforming.  These moments, if tapped into regularly, build up over time to give me a source of peace, perspective, and calmness.  Ideally, I can meditate for 15 minutes to catch my breath and be silent.  Most often, my mind is racing with all the things I haven’t done, forgot to do, or need to do.  Nonetheless, I force myself to take the time to decompress.  I become more centered, less frantic, and calmer. Family time becomes more focused and more fulfilling.

When my daughters ask me why I need mommy time, the answer is quite simple.   Mommy time makes me a better mommy!

As mothers, we feel selfish or guilty if we take some “me time” I did for many years but honestly I think it’s a work in progress. Sometimes the plate feels too full, you cannot possibly put one more thing on that plate and yet you want to hit pause and take some me time? Ya right!

When I began running, it was the thing that allowed me to mentally put all the things away that maybe were hanging out where they didn’t need to be. I couldn’t run listening to music as I found the cords distracting so in my moments of anxiousness, I found this the best time to ask myself what was lingering in the back of my mind?

I’d make note of the things I needed to do and what was realistic! What could I actually get done today? What do I actually NEED to get done today? What do I want to get done today? Will I be ok if these things didn’t get done today? As I ran, I found myself really putting things into perspective. There was a lot of things I wanted to get done today but they didn’t NEED to get done today.

I was setting myself up to fail with unrealistic expectations of myself. In my personal opinion, balance is like a unicorn it simply doesn’t exist in the material way we want it too. Balance is figuring out what you’re ok with letting go of today! I am busy, I wear many hats but at the end of the day when I’m asking how do you do it all? I simply respond, “I don’t… I can’t” and I’m ok with that cause taking that me time makes me a better me, a better mommy, a better friend and wife!

 

Make It Vancouver 2019: What You Need To Know Before Attending!

Make It Vancouver 2019

Make It Vancouver 2019 is one of the most anticipated markets to hit Vancouver. Year after Year, Make It Show has taken place in East Vancouver not to far from me at the PNE Forum. If you love to support local and have an eye for all things handmade, this is one market you do not want to miss!

When I first started Shop Ava To Zoe, of course, it was under a different name at the time, but Make It Show was a market I had aspired to be a vendor at!  After attending a few years in a row, it became clear that I was not going to be able to produce the quantity nor would I probably be able to keep up energy wise. With so many amazing vendors Make It Vancouver 2019 is easily one of the most sought after local shopping experiences.

“Since 2008, Make It has grown to become one of the most popular and well-attended craft fairs in Canada, with biannual shows in VancouverEdmonton and Calgary. This massive growth would have never been possible without the support, enthusiasm, and love from our amazing community. Each year, more and more conscious shoppers buy from our Makies, which in turn allows them to do the work they love.”

Make It was founded by siblings Chandler Herbut and Jenna Herbut. in 2016, Chandler make the decision to leave Make It and focus on his clothing company. Jenna continues to run Make It with an incredible and dedicated team. Make It has been a platform for countless artists, makers, and designers to be able to sell their work to the public.

I’ve been going for a few years now, so I may be biased but with over 200 of your favourite Makies (and some brand new ones, too!) the Make It Vancouver 2019 spring show promises to knock you off your feet!  You will be able to shop all the beautiful handmade goodies at the PNE Forum this April 19th to 21st. Stock up on accessories, jewellery, clothing, art, home decor, food, baby/kid items, and lots of other beautifully crafted goods.

Make It Vancouver 2019

 

Being a maker myself, I can promise you that everything at Make It is made with a whole lotta love! But if that’s not enough for you, there will be delicious food trucks and a beer garden so make sure you come hungry n’ thirsty!

When you’re at Make It Vancouver 2019, make sure you check out the Grand Prize draw and charity silent auction with beautiful items donated by our generous Makies. 100% of the proceeds will go to benefit the Union Gospel Mission.

If I can give you any words of wisdom, it would be these three tips

  1. Bring Cash just in case
  2. Leave the stroller at home (baby wear if you can)
  3. Be kind and respectful of all the vendors. If you don’t agree on the prices, keep that to yourself and share with your guests once you’ve left the building! It’s disheartening to hear someone say “I could make that for less” cause honestly, anyone who has fell victim to Pinterest, knows its usually cheaper to just buy it from the professional!

Now… let’s get to it, the shopping at Make It Vancouver 2019!

Some of my favourite vendors that I’m looking forward to seeing again are:

Make It Vancouver 2019
Photo by Erin Ireland!

And here are some new to me vendors that I am excited to check out at the Upcoming Make It Spring edition April 19th to 21st

Make It Vancouver 2019

Interested in checking out Make It Vancouver 2019 for yourself? Head over to the website to see a full list of vendors and the other Make It Locations. I’m also giving away 10 sets of 2 tickets over on Instagram and Facebook! Be sure to remember some of those companies listed above, it’ll help in the giveaway!