IMPACT Magazine's December 2020 Edition

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Cinnamon Buns & Festive Vegan HOLIDAY RECIPES

Cold Weather

RUNNING Motivation

WORKOUTS Core for the Outdoors

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Running YearRound.

Our high-tech, sustainable greenhouses operate year round, even through Alberta winters. We harvest fresh, premium produce for local consumers in December, just like we do in summer months. We’re Always Growing, and running!

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Inside Every Issue NEWS & VIEWS 12 First IMPACT



Canadians Tackle Marathon Project Supporting #STARTLINEIMPACT Annual Summit Goes Virtual 62 Final IMPACT

What’s in Your Wineskin? WORKOUT 14 Core for the Outdoors 18 Lean into the Power of Kinstretch RUNNING 22 Winter Running in COVID Conditions SPORTS MEDICINE 24 Secrets to a Healthy Spine H E A LT H & W E L L N E S S 26 Skincare Tips for Winter in the Outdoors AT H L E T E S W I T H I M PAC T 32 Striving for a Cure 34 Going the Distance


FITNESS 38 A Minimalist At-Home Gym 40 Anxious? Grab a Barbell NUTRITION 51 Are You Getting Enough B12?

Features 28 Mark McMorris – The Comeback Kid

RECIPES 53 Spiced Holiday Eggnog 54 Kimchi Collard Parcels with Sesame Mushroom Stuffing & Smoky Fermented Cilantro Cream 56 Squash Puree and Squash Skin Crumble 57 Easy Vegan Stuffing with Cranberries 58 Eggnog Ice Cream Sandwiches 60 Vanilla Chai Cinnamon Buns 61 Old-fashioned Ginger Snap Cookies

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For this athlete it’s all about winning and going for that elusive Olympic gold medal 36 Work Out in the Snow

When it comes to exercising outdoors there are a lot of options – here are three activities to try this season


FOOD & NUTRITION 52 Eating Sustainably, One Bite at a Time

42 2020 Holiday Gift Guide

The Ultimate Fitness Wish List

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22 IMPACT Magazine

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HOLIDAY EDITION VOLUME 30, ISSUE 2 A leader in the industry for 29 years, IMPACT Magazine is committed to publishing content provided by the best experts in their fields for those who aspire to higher levels of health, fitness and performance.




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The opinions expressed in IMPACT Magazine are the writers’ and not necessarily those of the publication. IMPACT Magazine advises you to consult your physician if you do not follow a regular fitness program. All content is the property of IMPACT Productions Inc. and cannot be reproduced in any form without written consent of IMPACT Productions Inc.


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MANDY GILL Work Out in the Snow Mandy Gill is a health and wellness advocate, national athlete, ultra-marathon runner and speaker who has appeared over 200 times on various TV programs. She recently launched the Hooked On Habits Podcast featuring conversations with some of the world’s most successful individuals. WWW.MANDYGILL.COM



MICHELLE LINDSTROM Winter Running in COVID Conditions Michelle is a freelance writer/editor and AFLCA certified group fitness leader in Edmonton. A few years ago she started a program called You Be You (UBU): boosting girls’ sense of belonging, self-awareness and interest in physical activity. She enjoys writing articles about people crushing goals, big and small. WWW.U-B-U.CA




LAURIE MACKAY What’s in Your Wineskin? A sommelier by trade and a traveler by passion, the world of wine continues to nourish Laurie’s love of exploring faraway places and their cultures. For the past 14 years, Laurie has been the drinks columnist on CBC Radio One in Calgary, and she is also a wine curator/tour host for Expedia Cruises. WWW.SOULVINES.COM



TY PILSON Striving For a Cure Ty is the Director of Digital and Social Media for the Calgary Sports and Entertainment Corporation (Calgary Flames, Stampers, Roughnecks and Hitmen) in Calgary, AB. He spent 17 years with the Calgary Sun as a sports editor and managing editor prior to joining CSEC. TYPILSON

MARISSA TIEL Going the Distance Marissa Tiel is an award-winning freelance journalist and photographer. Based in Vancouver, she enjoys writing about the outdoors and endurance sports. She’s been known to go for long walks in the woods and completed the 4,265 km Pacific Crest Trail in 2018. WWW.MARISSATIEL.COM



KATY WHITT A Minimalist At-Home Gym Katy is a photographer and visual artist based in sunny Calgary, AB. She developed her passion for storytelling and the arts into a full-fledged digital media career. Katy has been a contributor to IMPACT Magazine for over 6 years, with her work living in both private collections and in commercials across the globe. WWW.K ATY WHITT.COM





Danielle Arsenault, Dan Barber, Roslyne Buchanan, Cassie Day, Danyael Halprin, Louise Hodgson-Jones, Arianne Jones, Maria Koutsogiannis, Michelle Lindstrom, Laurie MacKay, Alexandra Magee, Rafal Matuszewski, Nadia Moharib, Ty Pilson, Shayla Roberts, Marissa Tiel, Jessica Woollard. PHOTOGRAPHY

BotaPro, Danielle Arsenault, Emma E. Arsenault, Sewari Campillo, Row 7 Seed Company, Alesia Kazantceva on Unsplash, Maria Koutsogiannis, Yan Lyesin, Peter Mourning, Christian Pondella, Michael Savage, Seed Change, Ian Simpson, Curtis Trent, Candice Ward, Katy Whitt.

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STAY STRONG. STAY FIT. STAY HOME. The Lebert Equalizer is a high-quality functional ďŹ tness station perfect for full body bodyweight resistance exercises such as dips, push and pull ups, L-sits, knee and leg raises, st stretches and more.


Thank you


we at IMPACT wrap up our year with this 2020 Holiday Edition, I hope that it can brighten your spirits a little during this difficult time. Our mental health and physical fitness has never been more important and perhaps the one thing that we can control is the way in which we give back to ourselves. Our health is the greatest gift of all; don’t take it for granted. Take the time to really listen to what your body and mind may need. Explore a new fitness or outdoor activity that you’ve always wanted to try; change up your nutrition plan and mix up your meals with more plant-based options for a healthier body and planet; prioritize sleep (guilty as charged!); practice gratitude for what you do have and what you can do; and hone in on a self-care routine that you can implement when things feel overwhelming. This has been a tough year. I too have had many moments of anxiety and many sleepless nights not knowing what the future will hold. We’ve all witnessed great losses, both personal and financial. It has been a lot. Acknowledging gratitude, my biggest and most unexpected blessing has been the time I have been gifted with my husband and daughter. In 2020, I have experienced loyalty from colleagues and friends that has lifted me up and motivated me to continue fighting for my business and I encourage others in my community to do the same. My team here at IMPACT has been absolutely incredible, and I couldn’t be prouder of the work we have done together. A pandemic is no easy time to build new client relationships, sell advertising, or learn the ropes of a complex magazine design, but my team has risen to the occasion with heart and tenacity. I couldn’t have done it without them, and I cherish their camaraderie and friendship. One of my greatest pleasures this year has been to work with colleagues from IMPACT’s past who have come back during COVID to lend a hand. Louise Hodgson-Jones, our Guest Editor this issue, was the editor of IMPACT Magazine from 2000 to 2006 before she was lured into life on the beautiful West Coast in Victoria. She is a brilliant writer and communications and media specialist who works with several organizations including the GoodLife Fitness Victoria Marathon, Pacific Cycling Centre and the Pacific Institute for Sport Excellence (PISE). She is the general manager of the Vancouver Island Race Series and event director for the Oak Bay Half Marathon and is an avid volunteer on various health and fitness organizational boards. We here at IMPACT are all pretty envious of her island lifestyle, which of course means she can run year-round in between walking her dogs (and husband!) and exploring the great coffee culture in Victoria. We are thrilled to have you back, Louise! What I have learned for certain this year is that we must take care of ourselves, those we love, and our communities. I applaud those who have selflessly, willingly and proudly worn their masks, social distanced and isolated when necessary for the sake of the health of others. I thank everyone who has taken this time to support small businesses and local entrepreneurs who have poured their hearts and souls into their businesses over the years; who don’t know if they will be able to weather this storm moving into 2021. I have had these uncertainties myself, and thank all of you deeply for your ongoing support – it means everything. In the spirit of togetherness have a healthy, happy holiday season. Elaine Kupser, Publisher & Editor-In-Chief

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JOIN A WINTER MOVEMENT CHALLENGE FOR THE TIMES. Move outside for 80 hours in 90 days from December 21st to March 20th, the first day of winter to the last. Run, walk, hike, fat bike,skate, snowshoe, x-country and downhill ski all the way to Spring.

$125 adult / $89 youth

This 3-month challenge includes • • • • • • • • •

90 days of motivation and movement Opportunity to raise funds for the Canadian Mental Health Association - Calgary Region Inclusion in Run Calgary’s first ever movement challenge Access to Winter Moves private Facebook group Access to tracking app Challenge Hound Curated weekly content featuring pro athletes, brands and tips to keep you moving Discounts for equipment rentals and lift tickets Digital Move Bingo with weekly prizes First Access to register for our in-person Fat Tire Bike Race launching in January.

ADULT Warming Pack

YOUTH Warming Pack


Canadians Tackle Marathon Project RUNNING

N ATA S H A W O D A K ’ S F I E R C E J O U R N E Y On your mark, get set and go … check out the Marathon Project 2020 which takes place on December 20th in Chandler, Arizona. Fifty men and fifty women will take on a 6.9 km (4.3-mile) loop fast and flat course with the goal of making the Olympic standard for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics (re-scheduled to July 2021). The men’s qualifying time is 2:11:30 and the women’s 2:29:30. The entry list includes seven Canadians (four men and three women). Cam Levins, who holds the national record of 2:09:25 (2018 Toronto Waterfront Marathon) leads the Canadian men’s field followed by Rory Linkletter (2:16:27), Benjamin Preisner (half PB 1:03:09) and Justin Kent (half PB 1:04:20). The Canadian women are Emily Setlack (2:19:48), Kinsey

Middleton (2:32:09), and Natasha Wodak. Wodak, from Vancouver, hasn’t run a marathon since her debut in 2013, finishing the Toronto Waterfront Marathon in 2:35:16. Since then the 10,000 metre specialist has been concentrating on shorter distances including running a 1:09:41 in the Houston Half Marathon in January. Pandemic or not, Wodak, accompanied by her coach Olympic bronze medallist Lynn Kanuka (nee Williams), has been pounding the roads over the last few weeks, focusing on her goal. Pre-COVID the Tokyo goal was 10,000 metres, “With all the uncertainty and the Olympics no longer on the table for 2020, we decided on preparing for a half marathon time trial, and then the opportunity came up to run

the elite Marathon Project in Arizona,” said Kanuka. Once the decision had been made her ‘Team Fierce’ training group with Kanuka and supporters Jim and Mary Heinz, had a plan. “We've worked hard on her turnover and arm action, and she truly has become a marathon runner. En route she has run her second fastest half ever, a sanctioned time trial of 1:10:01, and now she has only a couple more marathon pace volume sessions and her prep will be complete,” added Kanuka. “Amidst these difficult COVID times, Tasha has grown as an athlete and a person, and truly understands what it means to appreciate ‘the journey’.” For details on the Marathon Project go to:

RIGHT Before taking on the marathon, Natasha Wodak, right (#34) had a busy season including competing in the Pan Am XC Cup at Bear Mountain, Langford, BC


in February.

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S U P P O R T I N G # S TA R T L I N E I M PA C T December is #STARTLINEIMPACT month! With 2020 coming to a close, so traditionally would a highly successful race season with hundreds of participants celebrating their PB’s. However since March the race industry has been decimated and now all races have to look forward to is hopefully a return to normality at some point in 2021. On Wednesday, December 1st The Canadian Endurance Sport Alliance (CESA) decided to mark the end of what has been a terrible year with a campaign to rally support for a return to racing next year. Races all over Canada erected their start lines to highlight the industry and with the hashtag #STARTLINEIMPACT are encouraging individuals to share stories on what races mean to them. The

campaign will run until December 31st. Co-founder of CESA and Executive Director of the Calgary Marathon, Kirsten Fleming said: “Races, like live events, were the first to get shut down and will be the last to come back. The best minds in the business are collaborating on the safe return to racing but 2021 is still very uncertain.” Rachel Munday, Race Director of the Manitoba Marathon applauds the campaign. “2020 has been a year of exceptional challenges across the board, and the #STARTLINEIMPACT collaboration is an opportunity for us to raise awareness of the impact on the endurance event industry as a whole.” So let’s all lend our support and go for a run, take selfies and hash tag #STARTLINEIMPACT.

It’s been a hard year for everyone, but an even harder year for her.


ANNUAL SUMMIT GOES VIRTUAL The 2021 Sport for Life Canadian Summit is going virtual. From January 26 – 29 and February 2 – 4 the Summit will be accessible to anyone worldwide. This is an unprecedented opportunity to reach people regardless of their ability to attend their traditional in-person event. For 15 years the Summit has brought together leaders who work to enhance the quality of sport and physical activity in Canada. This year with seven keynotes, 95 presentations and 1000+ anticipated attendees, it promises to be one of the most impactful Summits yet. This year’s theme is Pathway to Policy and among the speakers are: Dr. Véronique Richard, National Circus School, Cirque du Soleil and Wesley Davis, Assistant Manager, NYRR Striders, New York Road Runners. Richard will present on scientific insights into movement creativity and its related

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influence on performance and optimal psychological states, and Davis will review the Striders fitness class program model that has a core message of moving together in stride by fostering not only physical and mental health but also social connections. “This year’s Summit is an unprecedented opportunity for cross-sectoral collaboration, as our virtual delivery allows us to engage speakers from around the world and reach more delegates than ever before,” said Richard Way, CEO of Sport for Life. “Despite the challenges we all face during the pandemic, the physical literacy and quality sport movement continues to grow worldwide, and it’s more crucial than ever to work together, and innovate to achieve large-scale system change.” For more information go to:


IMPACT Magazine


Core for the Outdoors

Forget training for a six-pack, think training for life BY CASSIE DAY One of IMPACT Magazine’s Canada’s Top Fitness Trainers; Founder and Head Coach at All Day Fit in Toronto, ON CASSIEDAY Y Y

Location: Training Lane, Toronto, ON


strong core underpins everything we do. Our core muscles are the central link, as they connect our upper and lower body. We need to train our abdominal tissues in isolation but we also need to train the entire complex of the shoulder, hips, and core to work together as one unit. The role of our core is to link, brace and produce stability.


1. Anti-Extension: Any exercise where the purpose is to resist extension at the spine. 2. Anti-Rotation: Any exercise where the purpose is to resist rotation at the lumbar spine. 3. Anti-Lateral Flexion: Any exercise where the purpose is to resist lateral flexion (sideways bending) at the spine.

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• Bending motions such as putting on shoes or sitting in a chair. • Any lifting, twisting or standing. • Maintaining a healthy back. Four out of five North Americans at some point in their life experience back pain. The first thing prescribed is core exercise. • Playing sports: golf, tennis, biking, swimming, kayaking, etc. are all powered by a strong core. • Balance and stability: the core allows the body to move in all directions and stand in one spot without losing balance. • Good posture: weak core muscles contribute to slouching. Good posture projects confidence, allows for proper breathing mechanics and reaps full benefits from our workouts.





Firmly driving your inside foot into the ground, raise the outside leg to a 90 degree angle. Think of a tall spine. Maintaining hands in the middle of your chest, exhale the cable straight out in front of you, resisting both lateral flexion and rotation. Inhale and pull back towards your chest.


On your back, feet up at a 90 degree angle, exhale to bring your rib cage down as you pull the cable towards your chest using your lats. Inhale, return your arms overhead with control. As you do this, your knees should not move and you want to be thinking about not extending through your spine as you move overhead. If you feel your low back arching off the floor or your ribs popping up, these are good indicators that you are over-extending.


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In this move, think both anti-extension and anti-rotation. Standing on two feet, hip-width apart, stand next to your cable facing forward (not towards your cable). Making sure the cable is on the highest pin, place one hand on the top of the rope and the other on the bottom (in a downward direction). Bracing your core, pull the cable downturning your hips and shoulders as one unit. Transfer your weight to your outside leg as you exhale. Pause for a second and return your rope to the top of the cable, inhaling.

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In a tall kneeling position, tuck your toes, squeeze your glutes, bring the cable above your head, exhale your ribs to your hips and hold. Begin with a 20-second isometric hold and progress as it becomes easier. Join All Day Fit’s Virtual Class CHALLENGE. Ten classes in fourteen days challenge in their Virtual Online Hub. Here you can expect training focused on strengthening your core! Remember, a strong core unpins everything that we do. Follow on Instagram to learn more.

IMPACT Magazine



f l t y n GYMVMT.COM



Lean into the Power of Kinstretch Develop maximum body control, flexibility and usable ranges of motion BY RAFAL MATUSZEWSKI – One of IMPACT Magazine’s Canada’s Top Fitness Trainers and manager of Restore Rehabilitation & Wellness in Surrey, B.C. CUTTHESHITGETFITPODCAST

Clothing courtesy of Puma


instretch is defined as a movement-enhancement system that develops maximum body control, flexibility and usable ranges of motion. Kinstretch gives you the ability to have more movement options to be efficient, fast, powerful, and most importantly, safe. One of the most crucial differences between Kinstretch and other flexibility approaches is utilizing an active range of motion to build your foundation. Follow this quick Kinstretch routine, focusing on the two most commonly tight areas of the body - the hips and shoulders - and you can slowly build a more robust and resilient body that will have more control, strength, and flexibility.

B Beginner I


A Advanced

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5 reps per side B Place hands on floor I/A Extend arms In the 90/90 position lean forward with your torso, and use all of your adductor muscles to pull you down slowly. As you reach your end range, push yourself back up into the start position by activating your glutes. Perform each repetition as a slow and controlled, almost isometric, push and pull of the leg muscles. Use your abductors to isometrically pull you in and the glute complex to push you back up. The goal is to use the muscles in your hip complex, not your lower back. If you feel anything in your lower back while doing this one, you are not quite ready for the Intermediate / Advanced extended arms option.



5 reps per side, hold for 5 seconds B Place elbow on the ground I/A Stay tall, grip block B


B In the 90/90 position place your elbow

on the ground. Lift your ankle towards the ceiling, and hold. Slowly lower and repeat. I/A Same as Beginner, but rather than placing an elbow on the ground, either squeeze your hands or squeeze a yoga block to create tension and stability through the body. Stay tall in this position, and do not lean forward or backwards. I/A


Lift both the ankle and knee towards the ceiling and hold. Start with the ankle first, then transition to both the knee and ankle. As you lift the leg do not lean over to your side or allow your knee to float forward. Slowly lower your leg and repeat.



Lift the ankle, then the knee, and extend your leg straight and hold. You’ve now combined all three stages to activate many muscles within that hip complex.

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Starting Position - Place yourself in a prone position with your head supported by a yoga block. Set your hands in a fist-like position right beside your rib cage. Squeeze all the muscles between your shoulder blades to lift your elbows to the ceiling. Your fists should come off the ground a few inches. Isometrically hold for 5 seconds.

Elbow Extension - From the same prone position lift the elbows towards the ceiling, then extend your forearms toward the ceiling as if doing a dumbbell triceps extension. Hold for 5 seconds, bend your arms and slowly lower your fists to the ground. Hold for 5 seconds with the arms fully extended.

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Elbow Extension and Axial Rotations - From the same prone position lift your fists off the ground, extend the forearms, and go back and forth between internal and external rotation of your shoulders. Repeat 5 rotations of internal and external rotation, then bend your arms and slowly lower your fist to the ground. At this point, your upper back should be on fire and fatiguing - that’s how you know it’s working.

IMPACT Magazine

“ REPSOL SPORT CENTRE is leading the way when it comes to controlling the spread. Safety is a shared responsibility of every employee. From the CEO to the front line employees, safety is not just a priority, it is one of our core values.

forever active. forever strong.


Winter Running in COVID Conditions How not to lose your momentum through the winter months BY MICHELLE LINDSTROM LIND_MICH




arly in 2020, runners were in race-planning mode – determining budgets, training schedules, and which run groups to join. But then the pandemic hit, and the ability to plan anything disappeared. Although we’ve adjusted to life amid COVID-19, running motivation quickly fizzled because “cancelled” prefaced everything we love about the activity: group training, in-person races, and fitness classes. Now we’re entering the dark, cold, winter months, and “What’s the point?” comes to mind for many when they see their running shoes. Danielle Smith, general manager of Sturgeon Valley Athletic Club (SVAC) in St. Albert, Alberta, has decades worth of fitness leadership experience. She’s also a year-round runner, even when temperatures fall into the low -20s because the outdoors give her something a treadmill never will: mental clarity. “I love the freedom, time, and space to just get out there,” Smith says. “You’re never going to regret the run when you’re done.” A motivational carrot for Smith typically involves a future race, making her training schedule of four to five runs a week, including interval training and hills, just a way of life. “Having races in-person, that makes the training more meaningful,” she says, noting that other challenges have come up in the past and she’s overcome them, but this scenario is completely new and hard to navigate. Signing up for the occasional virtual race is one of Smith’s 2020 workarounds. But she also chooses to push through, running shorter distances when needed, but never avoiding a run completely when doubt or negativity sets in. “I think it’s about putting your goals in your back pocket,” she says, “and putting it into perspective that COVID made us go into survival mode, and survival mode means running to me.” Smith’s SVAC colleague, Brian Hill, is a personal trainer of 30 plus years, a medical sales rep, and an avid outdoor runner with 21 full Ironman races under his belt. His 22nd was deferred to 2021,

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Right Danielle Smith, general manager of Sturgeon Valley Athletic Club (SVAC) in St. Albert, Alberta, stays warm during a sub-zero run.

and so he also registered for a virtual race or two this year. Hill realizes running isn’t for everyone, especially outdoors during a pandemic winter, but he reminds those struggling with the “why bother?” question that our views are pretty spectacular. “We’re so fortunate to be where we are; We don’t have smog or a lot of people around,” he says. “When it’s cold outside, yet the sun is shining, where else do you get that?” There’s no magic motivational pill to run, but the closest thing

IMPACT Magazine


is consistency, Hill says. “I’m not going to stop and then have to start again in the spring—that’s a lot of work.” His tip for staying motivated to run during winter is to set up a mock race. Whether it’s your first 5K or a marathon, build a training plan around a set date, put it all into your calendar, then just do it. “It’s not something to get to, it’s the journey,” Hill says. “Consistency, to me, is the whole thing.”

IMPACT Magazine

1. It’s easier to keep running throughout the whole year rather than taking the cold months off, losing a lot of your base, and starting back up again in the spring seemingly from scratch. That feeling is very de-motivating. Consistency is everything. 2. There’s a lot of freedom to run outdoors. The fresh air and sunshine (or snowflakes falling) brighten your day and perspective. 3. You’ll never regret the run when you’re done. Even though during the run, it may feel hard, the sense of accomplishment, the stress relief, the clearing of the mind fog makes it all worthwhile. 4. You can typically dress in enough layers to safely protect yourself from the winter elements. Check in with your local sports or running store for suggestions on how to layer and what materials work best for warmth and wind protection. 5. Don’t beat yourself up if you reduce your runs or take some time off for the holidays or other reasons. Just start up again. Readjust your plan. 6. Find somebody that you can share the training/ running experience with, whether that’s in-person at a safe distance (due to COVID-19) or keeping each other accountable by checking in virtually. 7. Race directors from around the world are doing an amazing job of hosting virtual races that you can register for and participate in by running locally, documenting them on your smart watch/device, then sending in your results. Many organizations are still supplying (mailing out) swag and/or medals for race completion. 8. Check in on why you’re running and if you actually like it. If you hate it, maybe it’s not worth forcing yourself to do it just because it helps you with strength or weight loss. There are a lot of other activities to keep you moving and make you happy. You’ll be naturally motivated to do something you like. 9. Don’t look for the light, become it. If running gives you mental clarity and stress relief, honour that. Layer up, get outside, and put one foot in front of the other. You won’t regret it.

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Dr. Stuart McGill teaching proper form to high-level athletes.

Secrets to a Healthy Spine The McGill Method empowers people on how to avoid back pain and rehab from injuries


hile some adhere to the mantra of no-pain, no-gain, Dr. Stuart McGill says the opposite is what a healthy back requires. The world-renowned expert in back biomechanics has dedicated more than three decades studying spines on people, including hundreds of Olympians and elite athletes. To say McGill has the background and scientific evidence to support people in restoring pain-free function is an understatement. But the author of the wildly popular, Back Mechanic, says he cannot offer a five-easysteps guide because, typically, there is no quick fix to back issues. The McGill Method starts with determining the motions, postures and loads that cause pain together with ones that do not. The next step? Avoid exercises and activities that trigger pain and incorporate new ways to sit, tie your shoes, lift your children and even walk, coached by techniques in Back Mechanic. Allow the pain to cool down.

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Essentially, recovery is about trading old habits for new ones. “If you bite your lip every day for a week, your lip will be angry,” McGill says. “But doing lip exercises everyday will fail to get you out of pain. Instead, stop biting your lip.” A comeback from a back injury starts with a proper assessment. “Assessment is king but in the medical system, clinicians don’t get paid to listen to the patient’s story and perform a thorough assessment. But it’s the story that usually reveals why the person has failed to get better,” says the professor. “There is no such thing as a “non-specific back pain” diagnosis – this just shows the person has not received a proper assessment . In fact, the pain pathway and mechanism is very specific.” Designed to empower people with a step-by-step plan to rehab their backs, the McGill Method includes a guide coaching a selfassessment of pain triggers. Then specific movement hacks are

IMPACT Magazine



coached around those. Tuning the body to move efficiently begins with the non-negotiable Big 3 exercises - the modified curl-up, the side bridge and the birddog/quadruped. And walking, which McGill refers to as nature’s balm, is incorporated into the program in doses designed to reduce pain rather than cause it. Nearly all back pain can be controlled and altered but, McGill cautions, it will not be with a one-size-fits-all approach because people are not built the same. “For example, some people have tall, slender spines. Some have large discs. Every single one of those (variances) gives a person a specific capacity,” he says. “When you experience or create stress in your body there is a biological tipping point. Biology does not give you infinite capacity. And their pain-free capacity is further defined by their specific injury or pain trigger.” With the proper matched approach, individuals can create beneficial stress that leads to adaptations which make them stronger and more resilient while those who push past their tipping point often see repercussions. “People who fail to become pain-free often build stresses and cumulative damage faster than their body can respond and adapt,” McGill says. There is also matching approaches with what works for your body. “Take squats as an example. There is a back squat, a front squat, a safety bar squat, a hex bar squat. Each of these changes the stress locations in the body linkage. If a person has shorter legs and a longer body versus long legs and a short body, they squat very differently,” he says. “Some people are wide squatters, some are naturally narrow due to variables such as the shape of their hip socket, and femur length. Choosing a mismatched squat will increase a stress concentration and decrease training capacity. Violating the tipping point increases the risk of injury and impedes athletic development. The answer and solution always comes back to the assessment.”

If you are a slave to your computer, you have made a deal with the devil to compromise your health Dr. Stuart McGill

Working with top athletes such as powerlifters, a variety of Olympians, top fighters and golfers has shown McGill how they produce outstanding athleticism and resilience. He has distilled this knowledge for application to anyone. McGill says it’s not unlike auto manufacturing giant, Honda, who builds and tests a high-performance F1 race car and then transfers the technology into its Civic.

IMPACT Magazine


McGill’s days of pushing his body past its tipping point, are gone. But he’s as committed as ever to backing up his body with what it needs to stay supple and strong. “I am now 63 and I have zero pain. When I was a younger fellow, I had pains because I was building up cumulative stresses,” he says. To keep his spine in line, McGill adheres to what he calls a “biblical work week,’ getting up at about 5 a.m. six days a week and doing his chores, typically physical labour around his home. “Stay away from your computer in the morning. If you are a slave to your computer, you have made a deal with the devil to compromise your health,” he says. “My point is, get moving.” Two days a week, he focuses on mobility, greasing up his neck, shoulders and hips so they can continue moving well and he does some thoracic work “because I don’t want to be a bent-over, old man.” Two days a week are earmarked for strength training in movement patterns, which could be in Backfitpro HQ or it could be outside chopping firewood. “Those days my focus is on strength and power, for example if I trip I can get my foot in front of me and arrest the fall. The goal is to be harder to kill,” he says. “And two days a week, I get my ticker going a little bit with something else, a cross-country ski or a swim or a bike ride.” “And, here’s the wisdom,” the distinguished professor adds. “On the seventh day you don’t do anything. Let your body adapt.”


McGill’s real-people-real-problems approach took a quantum leap into unchartered territory as his laboratory launched an investigation into back pain from sex. Clinicians voiced that patients came to them with debilitating back pain causing them to be celibate, and no guidelines existed on the advice they should provide. To tap into solutions, graduate student Natalie Sidorkewicz, measured muscle activation profiles, spine movements, and spine loads in couples (all in in long-term, committed relationships), while they were engaged in a variety of positions, literally, as to which postures and movements where most appropriate for people with specific pain triggers. The findings offered clinicians evidence-based guidance to talk about how to get back into sex with their patients. “It’s actually back pain that sells, not sex,” says McGill with a smile. “ “At the end of the day, we do our work to help people. My objective is to change the lives of people who are suffering.” He says solutions start with individuals knowing their pain triggers and focus on hip rather than spine motion. “As a basic rule, if, during the act you are in the top position pain is less using the hips for movement rather than the spine. When in the bottom position, it is best to support the natural curves of the spine and avoid initiating movement. If your position of choice involves standing up in a canoe, you are my hero,” McGill says.

December 2020  25

H E A LT H & W E L L N E S S

Skincare Tips for Winter in the Outdoors Keep that healthy summer glow year-round BY DANYAEL HALPRIN DANYAEL


26  December 2020

wound-healing properties for chafing, perhaps from ski goggles, or fissuring from wind or frostbite. Making good lifestyle choices as an athlete go hand in hand with skincare, says Stoddart, one of three girls on the team of 10. She lists managing stress, getting a good sleep, eating a healthy diet, and staying hydrated. Poelman recommends drinking six to eight glasses of water a day. Dial down the temperature of your shower. Hot water dries out the skin, making it itchy. As well, many soaps change the pH of the skin and dry it out, so choose ones that do not break down the natural lipids. Recommended brands are Dove Sensitive, Cetaphil, CeraVe, and Lipikar. Post-shower rituals are equally if not more important – pat yourself dry and then immediately smear on body cream to seal in the moisture.

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inter has arrived, bringing its cruel temperatures, low humidity, ravaging winds, and depending where you live, heavy rainstorms and/or pelting snow that batter our bodies. For those of us who continue to train and adventure outside during this season, how can we keep that healthy, sunkissed summer glow? Apply an antioxidant Vitamin C serum, emphasizes Dr. Susan Poelman, co-director of Beacon Dermatology, a team of board-certified medical, surgical and cosmetic dermatologists. Dab a couple of drops to your face every morning under your SPF 30 (minimum) moisturizer to clear away free oxygen radicals, which, in addition to skin cancer, can cause fine lines, wrinkles and pigmentation. “It acts like a Swiffer, it mops up cellular damage,” says Poelman, also a clinical assistant professor of dermatology at the University of Calgary. Alberta Mogul Team member Clare Stoddart says she always applies a sunscreen of SPF 50 or higher for her six-hour training sessions on the ski hill. The serum coupled with the SPF moisturizer are especially critical when the UV exposure in the mountains increases four to five times for every 1,000 feet of elevation. The Rockies are about 7,000 feet at the top, meaning 30 per cent more UV at the summit. And that doesn’t include the doubling of UV exposure from the snow’s reflection. “I’ve had my fair share of bad goggle burn,” says 19-year-old Stoddart, who competed for the first time in 2020 in the full NorAm tour in Utah, Vermont, Quebec, and Alberta. To further protect your skin from the wind and cold, Poelman recommends a thick layer of zinc cream or a zinc-based sunscreen. Not only does zinc have a barrier function, it also possesses



• 2 indoor NHL sized ice rinks, Competitive rates for non-primetime

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AT 7 CHIEFS FITNESS CENTRE Tsuut’ina Nation, 19 Bulhead Rd., Priddis, AB 403-258-4840

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December 2020  27

Mark McMorris — The Comeback Kid — For this athlete it’s all about winning and going for that elusive Olympic gold medal BY LOUISE HODGSON-JONES



was March 25, 2017 and the last jump of the day for Mark McMorris – a fun day of filming backcountry snowboarding with brother Craig and friends. He had done the jump earlier and knew he had to veer to the right to avoid a cluster of trees, but instead he spun to the left and crashed into the trees. Friends rushed to his aid, a helicopter was called and for the 90 long minutes it took to arrive everyone around him did what they could to keep him warm and his spirits up. When he arrived at Vancouver General Hospital he was found to have a ruptured spleen, a broken left arm, five cracked ribs, several fractured vertebrae, and a collapsed left lung. Having just secured his place on the Canadian Olympic Team for the 2018 Pyeongchang Winter Olympics the one question he asked when he came to was: “Can I go to the Olympics?” Fast forward eight months to November 2017 and the Big Air World Cup in Beijing and McMorris was on the podium – with a gold medal. Three months later at Pyeongchang he won his second Slopestyle Olympic Bronze medal. He had made a remarkable recovery. Chronicled in the documentary UNBROKEN: The Snowboard Life of Mark McMorris, Canada’s most successful snowboarder opens up about his accident and remarkable recovery. In hospital: “I remember slowly looking around and seeing everybody and feeling so happy to be alive.” He is also candidly reflective of what he went through: “I was thinking what am I doing? Why am I even snowboarding if this is what it has taken me to?”

28  December 2020


Injuries weren’t new to McMorris – he broke a rib at the X Games in Aspen in 2014, days before training was due to start for the Sochi Olympics, and in 2016 in Los Angeles at an Air & Style event he broke his femur after a difficult landing while attempting a frontside triple cork 1440. On both occasions he fought back with the courage and tenacity that he is so well known for. He won his first Olympic medal at Sochi, and after rehab for his broken leg he was back at the Olympic Big Air test event at Pyeongchang exorcising demons by successfully landing the front-side triple cork 1440. At 27 years McMorris has a grit and determination rarely seen in a young athlete. How does he manage to come back after all he has been through? “As you heal physically you heal mentally. As I sit there all broken I say to myself I can never do this again, but you get motivated. Luckily, I had a fan base before all of this happened, and they want you to do good and they send positive vibes and affirmations and I say to myself, I have to do this.” His fan loyalty has hit rock star status (who wouldn’t be envious with 750,000 followers on Instagram, 257,000 on Facebook and 184,000 on Twitter). His boyish good looks and infectious smile makes him the darling of snowboard followers all over the world. His endorsement of, and sponsorship from, numerous products has made him a celebrity. Not bad for a kid from Regina, Saskatchewan who only took up snowboarding after a neighbour gave him a skateboard. McMorris started snowboarding at the early age of five. He and brother Craig, two years his senior, were taken to Lake Louise by

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their parents. “My mom wanted us to take ski lessons but early McMorris back into shape after his backcountry accident. “I do a in the summer we were given skateboards as presents. And when lot of Zoom workouts with Damien, who knows the body so well, we saw snowboards on the wall, we said we wanted to skateboard and you know you are in such good hands with him. He brought me in the snow, so can you put us in those lessons?” he recalls. “I back from my femur fracture and my tree accident and got me to snowboarded once when I was five and then again at six and seven, the Olympics. He knows my limits and willpower and pushes me.” but by the time I was eight, nine and 10 I was out every weekend.” McMorris spends his downtime at his Encinitas, California In 2000, McMorris had his first competition in the unglamorous home and since March, two to three times a week, he does Zoom setting of a parking lot. “The local board shop in Saskatchewan set workouts with Moroney mixing in some fun with the functional. up some scaffolding with railings.” More competitions followed “It may not be crazy weights but low impact workouts that make until his first pro competition in 2009. His meteoric rise was me stronger and more powerful. We also do fun active stuff like beginning. He won his first World Cup slopestyle competition in surfing and skateboarding but also make time for the functional 2010, made his debut at the 2011 Winter X Games finishing second, movements as well.” and in 2012 at the Winter X Games in Aspen he won both the As a kid who got to play a lot of sports he knows the importance slopestyle and big air competitions. This put him in the history of involving youths in sport at an early age. In 2012 he and brother books as the first snowboarder since American Shaun White in Craig founded the McMorris Foundation with a vision of ‘creating a 2009 to win two gold medals. He repeated this performance in the more affordable, accessible, and inclusive sport culture in Canada’ 2015 Winter X Games. ( Through a partnership with the McMorris gravitated towards slopestyle early. “It was a side of Canadian Tire Jumpstart program over $250,000 has been raised snowboarding that caught my eye with all of the manoeuvres in to date for youths aspiring for athletic achievement. “We were the air. Half-pipe is intriguing to me as well but it is an event I don’t fortunate that we had the opportunity to play every traditional sport compete in as Canada didn’t have many half-pipes when I was and these taught us important life lessons. We feel every kid should growing up. Half-pipe is expensive to build whereas most of the have that opportunity and as someone who makes a living from resorts have jumps and rails which is slopestyle and big air. That’s sport it is hard not to give back. Jumpstart is an amazing foundation why all of the kids are participating and I was the early breed of and it feels good to give back to the community and kids so they can that movement, and I have been lucky enough to invent some have opportunities.” When he can, McMorris goes back to Regina in things and have good results.” the summer and hangs out with the kids at the skatepark. McMorris explains that snowboarding uses a diverse skill set. Although 2020 has seen many events cancelled, including “A well respected snowboarder knows all snowboarding, McMorris was able to start the disciplines, strives to be a good all round year making history. In January he won his snowboarder and then specializes in niche 20th X Games medal in Oslo inching ahead events.” of Shaun White’s record. It’s now December You also have to be extremely fit and and McMorris is keeping fit in Encinitas, but mobile, which McMorris has always been he is planning his preparation for the Beijing Mark McMorris because of his love of sports. He played Winter Olympics in 2022. On his horizon are lacrosse, volleyball and hockey growing up some World Cup races in Europe and the X and skateboards and surfs when he can. He says core, mobility, Games in January, World Championships in China in February strong glutes and quads, and strength to withstand high impact and a World Cup in Calgary in March. But he realizes schedules landings are essential for a snowboarder. “We prep ourselves for might change. “I don’t know what to expect but I will be ready and the worst-case scenario.” prepared.” His off season training regime consists of functional and He doesn’t like planning too far ahead, preferring to take each strength based exercises which he says can be ‘not so fun’ but he day and event at a time, as he knows there will be bumps in the knows that these are essential for him to not only stay conditioned road. But he does have three goals for the foreseeable future: “to but recover faster when he does get an injury. earn a spot on the Olympic team; stay healthy while having fun; His trainer is Damien Moroney, Director of Rehabilitation at and change the shade of my Olympic medal.” Fortius in Burnaby, BC. Moroney was instrumental in getting With his passion and tenacity those goals shouldn’t be a problem.


I don’t know what to expect but I will be ready and prepared.

IMPACT Magazine

December 2020  29

NOTABLE ACHIEVEMENTS Olympic Games 2014 Sochi Bronze medal, Slopestyle 2018 Pyeongchang Bronze medal, Slopestyle World Championships 2013 Stoneham Silver Medal, Slopestyle 2019 Utah Silver Medal, Slopestyle Winter X Games Gold Medal 2012 Aspen – Big air 2012 Aspen – Slopestyle 2013 Aspen – Slopestyle 2015 Aspen – Slopestyle 2015 Aspen – Big air 2016 Aspen – Slopestyle 2017 Norway – Big air 2019 Aspen – Slopestyle 2020 Norway – Big air

Winter X Games Silver Medal 2011 Aspen – Slopestyle 2013 Aspen – Big air 2013 Tignes – Slopestyle 2014 Aspen – Slopestyle 2016 Aspen – Big air 2019 Aspen – Big air 2020 Aspen – Big air 2020 Norway – Slopestyle Winter X Games Bronze Medal 2017 Aspen – Big air 2017 Aspen – Slopestyle 2018 Aspen – Slopestyle 2016 Rider of the Year Snowboarder Magazine 2017 FIS Crystal Globes Big Air and Overall Champion 2017 ESPY Award Winner Best Action Sports Male

SNOWBOARDING LINGO Slopestyle Riders perform tricks while descending a course, over obstacles that can include boxes, rails, jumps, jibs, or anything else the board or rider can slide across. Winning a slopestyle contest usually comes from successfully executing the most difficult line on the course mistakefree. However the rider who lands the hardest tricks will not always win over the rider who lands easier tricks on more difficult paths.

Big Air Riders perform tricks after launching off a man made jump built specifically for the event. Competitors perform tricks in the air, aiming to attain sizable height and distance, all while securing a clean landing. Many competitions also require the rider to do a complex trick but that isn’t always the case. Some competitions are based on height and distance of the launch of the snowboarder.

What is a front-side triple cork 1440? It is a spin off a jump where the rider rotates his body counterclockwise, opening up the shoulders so that the “front side” is the first side of the body going forward off the jump in the first 90 degrees of the spin. The move consists of four complete rotations (4 x 360 degrees = 1440 degrees).

30  December 2020

IMPACT Magazine


Half-Pipe The half-pipe is a semi-circular ditch dug into the mountain or purpose-built ramp made up of snow, with walls between eight and 23 feet (7.0 m). Competitors perform tricks while going from one side to the other and while in the air above the sides of the pipe.


Striving for a Cure

How a personal diagnosis became a national crusade BY TY PILSON – Director of Digital Content and Social Media for Calgary Sports and Entertainment in Calgary, AB TYPILSON

32  December 2020

their children would be different than our family’s past.” Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis is a ‘progressive nervous system disease that affects nerve cells in the brain and spinal cord, causing loss of muscle control.’ It is also called Lou Gehrig’s Disease, after the great New York Yankees slugger who was diagnosed with it in 1939. The most daunting fact about the disease is that there is no cure. At least, for now. “Every single illness, in a moment in time, was incurable until it was curable,” said Snow. “And our belief is that this is that moment for ALS.” Not long after his diagnosis, the #snowystrong campaign was born with teams across the NHL rallying around Snow, raising the profile of ALS. He and Kelsie – both journalists by trade – shared their story in the media, including a January 12, 2020 appearance on Hockey Night in Canada After Hours with Scott Oake. The campaign has so far raised more than $200,000. Snow attributes this to their communication skills: “We’re both born and trained communicators and pretty open and so it came to us very naturally.” To further spread the word, Kelsie started

RIGHT Calgary Flames Assistant General Manager Chris Snow, shows his smile and positive attitude which have got him this far in his battle with ALS.

a blog which chronicles their experience in a raw and honest way, talking openly about their journey with all the highs and lows. “I think that Kelsie’s ability to story tell and do so in an authentic and eloquent way has made an enormous impact. It’s a real example of the power and the good that social media can do,” said Snow. Since his diagnosis, staying active has been key. He’s been on skates more in the last two years than ever before hitting the outdoor rinks regularly along with coaching hockey for both his kids. He’s also

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he diagnosis in June of 2018 was a devastating one for Chris Snow. He had ALS and was given six to 18 months to live. The deadly disease had already claimed his father, two of his paternal uncles and his cousin, causing lasting misery and heartache to his family. The initial news was a horrific shock to the Flames Assistant General Manager and his wife Kelsie. There were tears; there was frustration, anger, and sadness. But, there was also hope, drive and determination. Describing himself and Kelsie as ‘natural optimists,’ the couple quickly shifted their focus to two things: his struggle to combat ALS, and raising awareness and funds to battle the relatively rare disease. Snow has a gene mutation that is present in only 2 per cent of ALS cases. This led to him being offered a spot in a clinical trial where he gets medicine injected into his spinal fluid, giving him hope in his personal fight. “Coming from a high profile position in the NHL, I felt a real responsibility that I had to do something after I was diagnosed,” Snow recalls. “To honour my dad, my two uncles and my cousin I needed to try and ensure that the future for my children, Cohen and Willa, and

been active in the summer with his other passion: baseball. “I can hit a baseball quite far, actually, with one good hand and my right hand as a sort of stabilizer. One of Cohen’s buddies said: ‘Cohen, if your dad had two hands it would be gone every time!’ That made my summer when he said that.” He’s also spent time biking and after a hiatus, got back into the gym lifting weights. All of this, he explained, is like a barometer when it comes to measuring how he’s faring in his fight.

IMPACT Magazine

MORE ABOUT CHRIS SNOW Hockey Night in Canada interview - ALS Campaign - Kelsie Snow’s Blog -

“Physical activity has been arguably the most important way for me to validate whether I am healthy or not. It just feels really good. It’s almost like giving myself a physical. If I couldn’t do those things, I

don’t think I’d be as healthy mentally as I am right now.” It is this positive attitude that has got Snow this far in his battle – and his belief that there will be a cure for ALS one day.

December 2020  33


Going the Distance

Marathon runner, Yana Hempler, gives back big time to front-line workers BY MARISSA TIEL – Award-winning freelance journalist, photographer and outdoor adventurist based out of Vancouver, B.C. MARISSATIEL



here’s a wall in Yana Hempler’s Victoria home decorated with extraordinarily expensive wallpaper. A patchwork quilt of race bibs adorn the space guarded by a fringe of medals. There’s her local Vancouver Island Race Series bibs; years of Times Colonist 10Ks; even her Boston Marathon number sticks to the wall. She was planning to add to it this year, but as with the rest of 2020, a global pandemic threw a wrench into those plans. By summer, all Hempler’s races for the year had been cancelled. “I had to find another way to keep myself entertained,” she said. Without races to anchor her season she opted for a different type of challenge: raising money for charity. She would do it in a way most familiar to her – by running. While Hempler loves running now, it’s not always been the easiest sport for the Russian-born athlete. On the verge of qualifying for a post-secondary running team, she got injured, taking herself out of the sport for a handful of years. When she returned, she could barely run a block. Hempler worked her way back slowly. First with 10Ks, then a half marathon, then a full. She set mini benchmarks for herself, watching them fly by as she continued to improve. Her big goal: a Boston qualifying time. People told her not to get her hopes up. “There were some people who were a bit skeptical and they said well you know the qualification requirements are pretty tough,” she says. “Maybe you should rethink your goals a little bit.” Not only did she finish her first marathon, she beat her Boston-qualifying time by more than six minutes. In other words, she smashed it. So it shouldn’t come as a surprise that when the Victoria marathoner announced a money-raising

34  December 2020

challenge in the summer, she also crushed it. Her proposition: she would run 10 marathons in 10 days and would fundraise for the Victoria Hospitals Foundation. The non-profit is close to her heart. Last fall, a good friend received care in the ICU. “My friend is alive and doing extremely well because of the care received at the hospital,” she says. “By raising money, it will enable the hospitals to do more work, to be able to save more people’s lives and help more people survive.” Five months into a global pandemic, Hempler was also running for front-line workers. “I know how hard they’re working right now,” she says. “So it was a good way to honour them and their contributions to society.” As the donations flowed in, Hempler decided to extend her streak. “I just didn’t want it to end,” she says. In the end, she ran 12 marathons in 12 days and raised nearly $36,000. Hempler is no stranger to long-distance challenges. She ran her first in 2013, running the length of Vancouver Island to raise money for three Victoria charities. Most recently, she embarked on a six-day challenge to see just how far she could run in that time with a group of friends. While she fell short of her goal (she rolled her ankle taking a wet turn too tight on day three), the group raised $35,670 for Help Fill A Dream Foundation, which supports families with critically ill kids. It’s her final running challenge this year. With any luck, next year’s race calendar will be fulfilled. Her current challenge: resting that ankle. Which, for an endurance runner who loves to log mileage, could be her toughest yet.

IMPACT Magazine


December 2020  35

Work Out in the Snow

When it comes to exercising outdoors there are a lot of options – here are three activities to try this season

BY MANDY GILL – International keynote speaker, ultra-marathon runner, and health expert in Vancouver B.C. MANDYGILLDOTCOM



here is nothing quite like being outside in nature with inches of snow under your feet, no matter your level of fitness. While you’re moving your body, enjoying the scenic views, crisp fresh air, and perhaps a conversation with a workout partner, you’re increasing your physical activity levels with lower levels of perceived exertion, altering physiological functioning, including stress reduction, restoring mental fatigue, improving mood and self-confidence. Whether you’re an avid trail runner awaiting races to get started back up, or a newcomer to running, now is the time to discover a new way to complement your running efforts by learning more about ways to incorporate workouts with microspikes, snowshoes, and ski touring! What is the most important piece of all three options we’re going to explore? Safety. Always tell a reliable person where you are headed and when to expect you back. Leave them with a detailed trip itinerary, and make sure you know your route and plan accordingly. Trust that even the best weather can change quickly, and the most predictable trail can get you lost. Be familiar with always packing the ‘10 Essentials’ to bring along in any of the activities mentioned.

36  December 2020

10 ESSENTIALS 1. Light – Flashlight or a headlamp with extra batteries (and light bulb if not LED). Green cyalume stick or small turtle lights as emergency backup. 2. Whistle – is ideal for signalling for help as your voice will become very hoarse in a short period of time especially if you are dehydrated. Other signalling devices; bear bangers, pencil flare. 3. Fire Starter – Matches (water proof or in plastic bag) or lighter, a commercial fire starter and/or a candle. 4. Warm Clothes – Hat or toque, gloves or mittens, puffy jacket, Gore-tex jacket, polypro underwear, good quality hiking socks and Gore-tex over pants. 5. Pocketknife – Although a multi tool is preferred, a good pocket knife with a quality blade will suffice. 6. Shelter – Large orange plastic bag and thermal tarp. 7. Water and Food – Electrolytes, bars, fruit, nuts. Water especially is an important essential item to take before and during your hike. 8. First-Aid Kit – Should include pocket mask; Sam Splint, bulk dressings, protective gloves, bandage, scissors and blister dressings 9. Navigation/Cell Phone – Good quality compass with built in declination adjustment and both topographical and interpretive maps, a GPS device and cell phone. 10. Trip Plan Itinerary – Always tell a reliable person where you are going and when to expect you back. Make sure you know your route and plan accordingly.

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MICROSPIKES From local parks to valleys to high-altitude peaks, hiking is a great activity to build your cardiovascular endurance, and with microspikes, hiking is possible at this time of year. When slick icy surfaces present themselves in a mix of ice and snow, microspikes are mandatory for your safety. They keep you upright and enable you to move efficiently without risking a fall or injury. Microspikes are comprised of chains and small spikes that are slipped over your footwear for extra traction. Despite them sounding heavy, there are fantastic lightweight options available that take seconds to slip on and off. They are inexpensive, compact to bring along, and you’ll hardly even know you’re wearing them.

SNOWSHOEING Snowshoeing is great fun, and research has shown it can burn anywhere from 500-1000 calories in an hour (be prepared to pack snacks and stay hydrated). Snowshoes are viewed by many as flotation over snow minus the traction, and as much as this is true, more recent models of snowshoes have come out with traction on the bottom and sides. I talk from experience because in recent seasons I have been guilty myself of using snowshoes on terrain that really required microspikes. Don’t do it, it’s frustrating, inefficient, and puts a pause on your workout. The best snowshoe conditions include trails that have several inches of fresh snow with short patches of hard-packed snow, and no ice. Snowshoeing will likely surprise you with the amount of sweat it can produce, so be sure to dress warmly in layers that include moisture wicking material in order to draw perspiration away from your body (this applies to all three activities mentioned in this article). As far as well-being, get ready to have your relationship with winter become more adventurous while strengthening your calf muscles, quads, and hamstrings on snowy cushion-like terrain that protects your knees and joints.

A personal favourite, ski touring – or splitboarding – is done in the backcountry, where you don’t have the aid of a chairlift to get you to a peak. With the aid of skins on the underside of your ski’s you can propel uphill (called ‘skinning’). The popularity of ski touring is growing, and whatever your reason to get involved you have to start with the basics. This activity isn’t simply about grabbing gear out of the closet, a lift ticket, and heading to the mountain. First and foremost it requires education. That means taking a course called Avalanche Safety Training (AST Level 1). In this typical two-day course you’ll be guided by professionals to learn the fundamentals critical to safe backcountry travel. Next, you’ll need the proper gear. This includes skis and poles, touring bindings, touring boots, skins, a backpack, transceiver, probe, shovel, and navigation. This may sound like a lot, but if you’re willing to put the time and effort in, the sport is an incredible complement to trail running in the winter. So, embrace winter and enjoy the many activities that await you in the great outdoors.

IMPACT Magazine

December 2020  37




4 1






A Minimalist At-Home Gym


utting together a home gym doesn’t have to be expensive, and working out at home right now can have many benefits when it comes to time and convenience. As well, home can be a pressure-free zone to work out when no one is looking! There is so much that you can do with a small space and a few cost-efficient pieces to give yourself a total body workout. 1 5 9 13 15 18

Here are some of our top selections from $9.95 to $299 that will give you a little of everything you’ll need to stay motivated and stay in shape at home. And don’t forget to grab those runners and head outside for a little fresh air and cardio to round things out. Thank you to Crystal Creek Homes in Calgary for allowing us to transform a space in their Currie Showroom.

Lebert EQualizer, $110-135 (USD); 2 Lebert HIIT System, $110-$120 (USD); 3 A-BAR, $179; 4 MD Buddy Flaman Fitness Adjustable Step/Deck, $299; Fitterfirst Sup-R Band Single, $10; 6 Fitterfirst Cando Klip, $10; 7 Fitterfirst Naboso Mind Body Mat, $155; 8 Fitterfirst Classic Foam Roller, $35; Fitterfirst Duraball Classic Ball, $55; 10 The Foot Collective Classic Beam 4' with cradles, $170; 11 Duonamic Eleviia Pull-Up System, $128; 12 Duonamic PowrHolds, $102; Mountain Rhino Premix Vegan Cinnamon Buns, Vegan Chocolate Chip, $13 each; 14 Natur'el Tea Wild Blueberry Rooibos, Creamy Earl Grey, Daily Detox, $17-19; AOR High quality supplements & products; 16 Xact Nutrition Disco Pack, $13; 17 Grassy Lakes Creamery Cashew Cheeze, Probititc Cashew Yogurt, $13-14; Rocky Mountain Tisane Variety 12 Pack, $35; 19 Thomas Fresh Coconuts, dragon fruit, pomelos from $3; 20 Clothing courtesy Hub1916.

38  December 2020

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December 2020  39


Anxious? Grab a Barbell

New study shows resistance training may reduce anxiety in young adults BY JESSICA NATALE WOOLLARD – Writer, teacher and communications professional in Victoria, B.C. JRWOOLLARD


esearch has long confirmed that aerobic exercise improves mood and mental health. Now, a study out of the University of Limerick in Ireland asserts that resistance exercise training (RET) reduced anxiety in young adults by around 20 per cent. Published in Scientific Reports in October, the findings indicate that young adults, aged 18 to 40 years and without any general anxiety disorder diagnoses, reported a significant improvement in anxiety symptoms after following an eight-week, twice-weekly RET workout. The workout, designed according to guidelines of the World Health Organization and American College of Sports Medicine, featured eight exercises, including barbell squats, bench presses, dumbbell lunges, curls, and abdominal crunches. Calgary fitness trainer Sandra Bueckert, owner of One on One Personal Fitness Instruction Inc., says it’s wonderful the study has looked specifically at weight training. Over her 31 years as a fitness trainer, she’s seen the positive impact it can have on young people’s mental health. “We have a fellow we’ve been working with who has quite a bit of anxiety and depression,” she explains. “Working out has helped make him physically stronger, and of course, that translates into him growing and feeling mentally more capable and stronger. The two go hand in hand.” Bueckert herself experienced the transformative power of weight lifting in the early ’80s. At 16 years old, she faced a difficult family issue and bullying at her school in Edmonton. In line at the grocery store one night, she picked up a magazine featuring Finnish bodybuilder Kiki Elomaa, her physique strong and athletic. Inspired, Bueckert began a fitness regimen first in her

40  December 2020

basement, then at the school gym. In weight training, she found relief — and her life’s purpose. “The thing that developed my mental strength was lifting weights,” she reflects. Curtis Christopherson, owner and CEO of Vancouver-based Innovative Fitness, theorizes why young people may experience anxiety relief with weight training. “The great thing about it is that it’s really easy to measure progress,” he says. “One minute you’re lifting 25 pounds, the next you’re lifting 30 pounds. You can set targets and goals and have that sense of accomplishment once you hit them.” The social aspect of working out also benefits youth, he continues. “People don’t tend to (go to the gym) alone… It’s an interactive and social activity.” With 250 fitness professionals working at his 12 gyms in B.C. and Ontario, Christopherson has also witnessed youth develop strong bonds with their personal trainers. “They become a voice of reason, a role model,” he says, noting that social interaction — or lack thereof, like during COVID times — plays a huge part in people’s mood and anxiety. Bueckert, too, observes COVID-19’s influence on mental health, noting it has caused people to feel isolated, anxious, and unhappy, sometimes due to weight gain. Fortunately, resistance training is something people can do at home, like Bueckert did in the ’80s. And, in the age of Zoom, personal trainers offer classes online. The Scientific Reports study has come out at just the right time, with COVID-19 increasing the population’s general sense of anxiety. Relief is near. Grab a dumbbell — or a can of corn — lift and repeat.

IMPACT Magazine

Calgary's first full-service vegan restaurant is open in the historic George Stanley home in the Beltline

Photo: Cottage in the Woods Photography

Vegan Street was born out of a passion for the vegan lifestyle, and a desire to bring plant-based cuisine to the mainstream dining culture in our city. Pull up a seat, enjoy a cocktail, and indulge in the foods you love, made entirely from plants.

Photo: Curiocity Calgary

Photo: Oliva McFarlane


THE ULTIMATE FITNESS WISH LIST Enter to win daily gift guide prizes! Beginning December 7 with IMPACT Magazine’s 12 Days of Fitness Giveaways Find us on social media impactmagcanada  impactmag  impactmag

—2020 —

Virtual Running Events for the Holidays! Looking for the perfect motivation over the winter months or the perfect holiday gift? Let bring your next finish line. We have 8 holiday medals, our infamous Ugly Holiday Sweaters, and 30+ Challenges available to keep you moving over the next few months! Sign up for yourself and bring along your friends and family! Use promo code IMPACT15 to receive 15% off. Valid until December 31, 2020.


Virtual Run Canada • Virtual running events • vr.virtualrunworld • #virtualrunningsquad

The Ultimate Fitness Challenge! Choose your own adventure when you sign up for Winter Moves, a new 90-day challenge created by Run Calgary. From the first day of winter to the last, move outside for 80 hours to keep your mind and body healthy. Run, walk, hike, fat tire bike, snowshoe, skate, cross country and downhill ski your way into Spring and support the Canadian Mental Health Association Calgary Region.

Youth Adult

$89 $125 42  December 2020

Run Calgary • Winter Moves runcalgary • runcalgary

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Experience Winter & Enjoy Summer with Indigenous Tourism Alberta From hospitality to entertainment to outdoor adventure and everything in between. With a complete list of Indigenous Tourism operators in Alberta, this Experience Guide highlights some of the provinces best Indigenous hospitality, entertainment, and outdoor adventure businesses. Find out more at Indigenous Tourism Alberta • Experience Guide indigenous.tourism.alberta • IndigenousTourismAlberta

Let It Snow, Let It Snow, Let It Snow!

Explore Calgary's Indigenous History This Winter

This holiday season treat the skier or snowboarder on your list to Canada’s Best Snow with a Banff Sunshine Super Card. For just $99, your special skier or snowboarder will enjoy deep discounts all season long.

The Mohkinstsis Tour Gift Box includes 2 passes for a walking tour of Calgary's St. Patrick's Island with an Indigenous guide from Many Chief Tours. The box also includes a sweet grass braid, a stained glass eagle feather and a card; all items are sourced from local Indigenous artists.



Banff Sunshine Village • Sunshine Super Card sunshinevillage • sunshinevillageresort • 1.87.SKI.BANFF (1.877.542.2633)

Many Chief Tours • Mohkinstsis Tour Gift Box manychieftours • manychieftours •

W.O.W. Card For 50% Off Skiing & Snowboarding The Wonders of Winter Card – or W.O.W. Card for short – is all about guilt-free skiing. Once the card is in your pocket you’ll enjoy unlimited 50% off days, with no blackouts, at Castle Mountain Resort + up to five 50% off days at Pass Powderkeg Ski Area (Crowsnest Pass). Available until December 24, 2020

$85 Sponsored Content

Castle Mountain Resort • Wonders of Winter Card castlemountainresort • skicastle • 1.888.SKI.TONS (754.8667)

December 2020  43

GIFT GUIDE —2 0 2 0 —

Yaktrax Run – Stand up to winter!

DryGuy Force Dry – All season boot and gear dryers

The Yaktrax Run is an ice traction device anatomically designed for use with running shoes. Run naturally on packed snow and ice with the combination of removable spikes and steel coils, providing 360° of unbeatable traction. The Yaktrax Run can be worn in temperatures as low as -41° Fahrenheit.

Whether you've been hit with a torrential downpour on your last run or worked up a healthy sweat, trapped moisture can linger in your footwear for days and cause odour and discomfort. Utilizing a gently heated air flow, the Force Dry glove and shoe dryer safely eliminates unwanted wetness from your footwear in about an hour; restoring comfort and increasing the longevity of your gear.



Yaktrax • Run Dealer locator:

DryGuy • Force Dry Dealer locator:

Darn Tough Socks – Producing the best socks the world has to offer Darn Tough Prism - Positive light. Covering the full spectrum of comfort, durability and fit, our Prism socks are beacons of positivity. Merino Wool Athletic crew socks will bend your mind with their flexibility - wool for training, for hanging, or for anything the four seasons bring your way. Wear them straight through, since they’re Guaranteed for Life.


Darn Tough • Prism Socks Dealer locator:

Knockaround Sport Collection – The most affordable sunglasses built with soul Give the gift of a pair of affordable, polarized, stylish sunglasses that are perfect for their next run (or any other outdoor adventure). Our Sport Premiums Collection will help them go that extra mile. Leave that annoying bounce and slip in the dust with embedded rubberized nose pads and a perfect fit for any activity.


Knockaround • Sport Collection Dealer locator:

Grangers Clothing Care Kit – Look after your gear so it takes care of you A great stocking stuffer, this kit includes our Performance Wash, Performance Repel Plus and a free sample of Active Wash. Keep all of your DWR outdoor technical clothing clean and performing as it was when you first purchased it. Bluesign® approved and PFC-Free.

$33 44  December 2020

Grangers • Clothing Care Kit Dealer locator:

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Better Workday Posture with the Pro Plus 30™ Varidesk


Enjoy better posture, productivity and overal health with this compact standing-desk solution. It is an easy and effective way to change the way you work. Adjusts instantly between 11 heights for easy ergonomic set up for all sizes of users. Make computer time Healthier time for you and your family!

Jawku Muscle Blaster Mini – The World’s Best Home Massage Unit


This is a game changer. It is the smallest, lightest, and quietest muscle massager ever! Weighting only 1 pound with 3 frequencies (1600 to 2800 percussions per minute) and 40 pounds stall force. Includes case, 4 heads, charger and 4 hour battery life. Your muscles will love you for this holiday gift.

Naboso Activation Insoles For At Work or The Gym


Designed by a Doctor to stimulate and strengthen your feet while improving posture, balance and reducing fatigue. Thin enough to fit in any shoe on top of existing arch supports or orthotics, improving postural awareness and balance when standing and walking. Most importantly, they feel great under your feet! Makes a perfect stocking stuffer!

Smart Quickfit Tubing Workout Kit – Great For Your Home Gym!


This kit contains all the handy tools you need for resistance training at home or on the go, complete with carry bag. It makes a perfect stocking stuffer or get a gift for yourself. This is a great way to add strengthening, toning and aerobic exercises to your holiday season.

Cubii Jr Under Desk Elliptical


Cubii Jr allows you to work out with the added stability of being seated. The patented ergonomic angle makes it possible to work out even if you do not have full range of motion of your joints. Move your legs even if standing is difficult and build muscle strength over time.

Leaders in Balance and Movement See hundreds of other great gift ideas at the Fitterfirst store to make shopping for healthy gifts easy!

Fitter International Inc. products are available at: 1.800.FITTER1 • #3050 - 2600 Portland St. SE Calgary, AB • fitterfirst • fitterfirst

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December 2020  45

GIFT GUIDE —2 0 2 0 —

Rasaa Cleansing & Skincare Body Wipes – Organic and Biodegradable! Reduce post-sweat prep-time without compromising your skincare routine. Rasaa Cleansing & Skincare towels are formulated with carefully selected organic ingredients that effectively and efficiently cleanse, deodorize, and enhance the look and feel of your skin. Available in three lines, Rasaa is the only all-natural and entirely biodegradable body wipe that caters to your unique skincare needs. A must have for your gym bag, at home or at the ski hill and in the backcountry!


Rasaa • Cleansing & Skincare Towels •

Skincare for Those Hardwired for Adventure Save your skin from the ravages of life lived well outdoors! Battle dry parched skin, cracked lips, chafing, wind burn, blisters, cuts, epic grazes, split winter fingers, heat and surf rash. There’s no mystery to decoding our ingredients: 100% pure, raw nature for your skin - and our products work. An essential in every adventurer’s toolkit. And we also have product for the four-footed adventurer!


X-Treme Organics • Adventure driven skincare • xtremeorganics

Give the Gift of Beauty Sleep this Christmas Perfectly prepare your body for bedtime with Neal’s Yard Remedies natural, organic health and beauty products. Indulge in a luxurious night time routine with the Beauty Sleep Foaming Bath, Shower Oil and Body Lotion to gently cleanse, nourish and leave skin beautifully scented. Finish your routine with the Beauty Sleep Overnight Treatment to support your skin’s natural nighttime regeneration while helping reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. Now you are ready for a good night’s rest!


Neal’s Yard Remedies • 1.855.495.4958 • nyr_canada • nyr.canada

A Healthier Smile with Invisalign Give or receive the gift of a healthier smile from Calgary’s Invisalign Providers, Dr. Mark Antosz & Dr. Robert Vincelli. With the iTero Element Scanner, you will be able to view a digital simulation of your new smile in only a few minutes! Available for children, teens and adults. Contact us today to set up your Smile Consultation. Antosz Vincelli Orthodontics • Invisalign • 403.247.3250 MM • 403.720.0044 Aspen 406 - 4935 40 Avenue NW Calgary, AB, Market Mall Professional Building 215 - 333 Aspen Glen Landing SW Calgary, AB

Health and Wellness Assessment & Self Care Package Elevate your health to a new level! This holiday season give yourself or a loved one a health and wellness assessment at Elevated Health. This package includes two 30-minute Naturopathic Doctor consultations, a vitamin D blood test, Tanita Body composition analyzer assessment and a bottle of liquid vitamin D.

$379 46  December 2020

Elevated Health • Health assessment 403.243.6695 • 933 17th Ave. SW #506 Calgary, AB

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Headwear That Starts a Conversation

Forever Floatride Grow – Plant-Based!

Support a Canadian start-up! We are Singles Apparel, a company designed to help the wonderful single people in our cities find companionship. Wearing our apparel indicates that you're single and open/looking for conversation and partnership. A great way to get off your phone and into your life.

The Forever Floatride Grow is one of the world's first plant based performance running shoes. Made with eucalyptus bark, bloom algae, castor bean oil and natural rubber, this shoe is crafted with both your run and our planet in mind. Because going sustainable shouldn't mean compromising on quality.



Singles Apparel • NICE HAT / NICE TOQUE • • nice_singles_apparel

Reebok • Forever Floatride Grow • reebokcanada

Plug-into Unparalleled Hand Heating The ewool® heated glove liner outperforms as a standalone on cold, dry days but also layers easily in more demanding conditions under any pair of gloves.


ewool® • Heated Glove Liners • ewoolwearables • 1.877.345.1654

Unleash the Heat Instantaneous warmth at the push of a button, the ewool® PRO heated vest keeps you thriving in the cold. It can be worn under a jacket without feeling bulky. The thin, stretch-fit design allows for a snug fit, providing abundant heat even in extreme cold. ewool® • ewool® PRO Heated Vest • ewoolwearables • 1.877.345.1654


Art On The Trails Make a statement this season in cozy wearable art featuring work by Sarah Angst. With colourful artwork inspired by nature and products designed for every type of outdoor adventure, you’ll feel light on even the darkest winter days. Find dealers and shop the complete collection online.

$32 Sponsored Content

Sauce • Sauce + Sarah Angst collection sauceactive • sauceactive

December 2020  47

GIFT GUIDE —2 0 2 0 —

The Alpine Glow Run Wild Tights Bewildher is slow fashion activewear empowering women to be wilder, sewn ethically in Canada from recycled plastic bottles. When you shop with us, the active women on your list will give as much as they get this holiday season. For every purchase we plant a tree, make a donation to a cause related to each nature inspired print and help fund a teenage girl to attend wilderness camp. Use code IMPACT for 10% OFF on our website.


Bewildher • The Alpine Glow Run Wild Tights •  bewildher

Don't Let Insomnia Weigh You Down Experience the relaxing and sleep-inducing power of a classic weighted blanket with a cool-to-the-touch, 100% organic bamboo cover and recycled glass beads. Weighted blankets are proven to reduce stress and contribute to sleep-initiation — and this one is specifically designed to provide all of the usual benefits, while wicking away sweat and keeping you cool all night long.


Black Sheep Mattress • Weighted Blanket • 403.455.8491 • blacksheepmattressco • Black Sheep Mattress Company

Portable Pull-Up Bar System – The Duonamic Eleviia Stay fit this year with the best portable doorway pull-up bar, Duonamic Eleviia. You don't have to worry about bolting or complicated setup with Eleviia - it can be used right out of the packaging and ready to go in minutes. Eleviia is the perfect gift for all fitness lovers who want to avoid the crowds in the gym in the new year and work out at home. Also, just released is the innovative finger strength training attachment called Powrholds. The combination is the most transportable finger trainer on the market – great for climbers!


Duonamic • Duonamic Eleviia and Duonamic PowrHolds • duonamicfit • duonamicfit

Get Ready to Camp Cozy Give the gift of coziness this winter! SMRT Tent has curated a selection of locally sourced adventure gear inspired by the Canadian explorer, from camp supplies to blankets that are sure to warm your heart. Perfect not only for the adventure addict in your family, but for those who prefer to bundle up by the fire as well.


48  December 2020

MRT Tent • Various products • smrt_tent S • 1.780.887.3191

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Best-Selling Fitness & Sports Titles Relieve stress, improve mental/emotional health, enhance sleep, promote weight loss, increase flexibility, improve muscular strength, learn about pregame nutrition, hydration, high-carb snacks, or macronutrient intake with these amazing books! To preview each book, table of contents, get excerpts and purchase visit or find them on Indigo or Amazon.


Human Kinetics • Fitness Books humankinetics • humankinetics

DNA-Based Nutrition & Lifestyle Report AOR’s groundbreaking MyBlueprint™ ​is a DNA-based Nutrition and Lifestyle Report that uses cutting-edge technology to identify your unique genetic variations. The information in the test provides: 84 SNPs, 65 genes, 41 clinical endpoints, 8 key health categories. It’s perfect for your favorite wellness warrior.


dvanced Orthomolecular Research • MyBlueprint™ DNA Kit A • aorhealth • aorhealth

The Best Dog Gear for Your Pup Going hiking or snowshoeing this winter with your pup? Grab the Banff All-Mountain Leash and Collar combo, the leash can be worn around your waist to let your hands free and the designs are inspired by real places in the Rocky Mountains.


Rocky Mountain Dog • Banff All-Mountain Leash • Banff Alpine Collar rockymountaindogca • rockymountaindog

Your Number One Place for All Things Gluten Free, Peanut/Tree Nut Free & Vegan GF Mountain Rhino is dedicated to giving you the best clean cheats with a focus on taste, quality and texture. Our mixes allow you to enjoy fresh baked versions of our products from the comfort of your home, all while donating to charity. Three popular vegan mixes, each supporting a different local charity


Mountain Rhino • Assorted mixes mountain_rhino •

Charcuterie-Platter Perfect We believe your food should be like nature: Natural. That is why our plant-strong cheeses and cultured cashew yogurts are aged using a living probiotic and time, rather than additives! Our clean label of ingredients and mouth-watering flavour combinations will have you indulging guilt-free!


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Grassy Lakes Creamery • Cheese wheel grassylakescreamery • grassylakescreamery

December 2020  49

GIFT GUIDE —2 0 2 0 —

Luxury & Clarity in an Energy Beverage Find your Christmas clarity with Rviita Energy Tea. Made with a delicious blend of tea, fruit juice, and organic honey, Rviita will revitalize your winter days. Support local this Christmas and fill a stocking with one of our four mouth-watering flavours. Use code IMPACT for buy one get one 40% off on


Rviita • Mixed 10-pack • rviitalize

It’s the Most Wonderful Beer of the Year Treat yourself or your favourite beer lover to 10% off this holiday season in the taproom, pickup or offsales at Inner City Brewing! ICB is an award-winning craft brewery located in downtown Calgary that has been serving up delicious, well-balanced beers for 2 years. Come in and try any of our 20 beers on tap, our pub-inspired menu or help yourself to take-out or offsales. If you prefer to stay home, order online and we will deliver beer directly to your doorstep! Scan the QR code on the golden can for your Holiday discount.

10% OFF

Inner City Brewing • Various products • innercitybrewing 816 11th Ave SW, Calgary, AB

Any Beer One For The Road Brewing Company is your Any Beer Company. As in Anytime, Anywhere & Anyone! Yea we brew Non Alcoholic Craft Beer but you'd never know it! Our unique recipe's mean we don't stop fermentation, we don't dealcoholize, dilute or change our product after brewing at all. We just brew really good low low ABV beer! And that means more beer, more styles and more often ... without limitations!


One For The Road Brewing Companys onefortheroadbrewing • One For The Road Brewing

Heat Up Your Holidays This limited edition tea collection features their bestselling Creamy Earl Grey, and caffeine-free Cinnamon Plum. Made in Banff with all organic ingredients, the tins can be purchased separately or as a wrapped set. Each tin makes about 25-35 cups of tea.


Natur’el Tea • Holiday Tea Tins •

Craft Beverage that Delivers on Taste, with Zero Calories Quench your thirst and nourish your soul with effervescent Rocky Mountain water, cold-brew infused with organic herbal tea. No sugar, no sweeteners, zero calories – simply natural ingredients and the robust, crisp flavours of Lemon Ginger, Hibiscus Cinnamon, Fruit Infusion (Rooibos) and Power Up Mountain Chai.


Rocky Mountain Tisane • Variety 12 pack rockymountaintisane • rockymountaintisane •

50  December 2020

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Are You Getting Enough B12?

An essential ingredient for a healthy plant-based diet BY SHAYLA ROBERTS – Peak Performance Coach, Evolution Coaching in Canmore, AB SHAYLASAYS




you eat a plant-based or vegan diet, you need to take a B12 supplement, but anyone can be deficient in this critical nutrient. According to Dr. Michael Greger, international speaker and nutrition expert, at least 30 per cent of the general public are B12 deficient. This number can be much higher in those eating a strictly plant-based diet without B12 supplementation. B12 isn’t found in plants, but it’s not found in animals either. It is made by micro-organisms and as our food supply has become more sanitary, the less B12 we get from whole foods. While having access to safe supply of food is important for health, we can’t neglect getting our vitamin B12. Dr. Greger explains that B12 deficiencies can cause everything from chronic diarrhea, anemia, nervous system damage, Parkinson’s syndrome-like symptoms, shortness of breath and swollen feet. Signs that you may be deficient can range from numbness and tingling in the hands and feet, muscle cramps, dizziness, cognitive

51  December 2020

problems, difficulty walking, erectile dysfunction, or even fatigue and depression. So where do you get B12 and how much do you need? The most consistent source of B12 is supplements, although many plant-based processed foods are enriched with B12. It is best to take a B12 supplement separately from other vitamins to get the best absorption. How much B12 we need is age dependent. The very young, pregnant mothers and older adults require more B12 in their diet. Dr. Greger recommends that pregnant and breast feeding mothers take 50 mcg a day. He also recommends that everyone over the age 50, whether they eat a plant-based diet or not, should be taking B12 supplements. If you are over 65 years old Dr. Greger recommends increasing the dose to as much as 650 to 1,000 mcg a day. Vitamin B12 deficiency is serious, but easy to avoid. Taking a B12 supplement is an effective way to avoid becoming deficient and stay healthy.

IMPACT Magazine

FOOD & NUTRITION — Left Ontario seed producer and plant breeder Annie Richard (Kitchen Table Seed House) with Dr. Michael Mazourek (Cornell University, School of Integrative Plant Science and co-founder of Row 7 Seed Co.) in Wolfe Island, Ontario.

Eating Sustainably, One Bite at a Time How to improve your health while contributing to a more sustainable planet BY ROSLYNE BUCHANAN – Freelance writer living above Naramata beach in Penticton, B.C.



ransportation and energy choices often take the brunt of the blame for damaging the environment, but the biggest impact can actually be attributed to our food system. To eat sustainably, your first action is to pack in more plantbased nutrients and make less room for animal proteins. Whole foods not overly processed are preferred. According to the recently released The Future 50 Foods report, there are categories featured such as algae and cacti that you may not have considered, along with IMPACT Magazine’s usual plant-based recommendations. We are all being encouraged to buy local these days. Not only will your food travel less distance from where it is grown to your table, but it will taste fresher because it can be picked riper and doesn’t have to languish in refrigerated transportation. Also, buying locally gives you more connection to the farmers who grow your food and you can gain a better understanding of how they grow it. There’s nothing so tasty as fresh produce in season. Better yet, grow your own. If you don’t have a large yard or are ready to plant in winter, start with small pots containing herbs, microgreens and cherry tomatoes. Your plants will beautify your home, diversify your diet and deliver a flavour punch to your dishes. Speaking of flavour and diversification, if you decide to grow your own produce, you’ll want to invest in the best seeds available. Michael Mazourek, a plant breeder and associate professor at Cornell University, uses cross-pollination to bring out the strengths in different varietals of vegetables to derive a superior product. This plant breeding is a painstaking technique that over time leverages desirable qualities in diverse varieties. Part of the goal is for the farmers to reap a productive harvest suited to a region’s conditions that is resistant to fungus and insects, therefore reducing the need for

52  December 2020

pesticides. For the consumer this means eating naturally nutritious food that is colourful, flavourful, and of the best quality. Another interesting aspect of this process is some enzymes and elements of the plant’s genetics can be refined. For example, the bitterness can be dialed back so getting children to eat healthy vegetables such as broccoli or Brussels sprouts becomes an easier task. For example Mazourek developed a Habanada Pepper, which retains the taste of a Habanero variety without the spicy burn. Waste not, want not nutritious food. Another sustainable tip is to use the whole plant by saving radish tops, kale stocks, turnip greens, cheese rinds and leftover bread for use in soup, casserole and pesto recipes. If you have leftovers after you’ve eaten, make a habit of saving them for lunch or stowing them in the freezer for a lazy day. When fresh produce is in season and the taste is at peak, freeze or preserve some if you can for those darker days. In moving toward more sustainable eating practices, remember your reusable bags to tote your groceries. Consider your food’s packaging: is it biodegradable, recyclable or compostable? As you nibble at sustainability, you’ll be embracing the three tenets of Slow Food: • Good – a fresh and flavorsome seasonal diet that satisfies the senses and is part of our local culture • Clean – food production and consumption that does not harm the environment, animal welfare or our health • Fair – accessible prices for consumers and fair conditions and pay for small-scale producers Most of all, don’t forget to have fun with experimenting with new things. Now’s the time to dive into those recipes and seek culture, flavour, nutrition and diversity for your cuisine.

IMPACT Magazine




Spiced Holiday Eggnog This delicious holiday eggnog is lusciously creamy and filled with just the right amount of holiday spice RECIPE & PHOTOGRAPHY BY ALEXANDRA MAGEE – Owner at Raw Eatery & Market in Calgary, AB RAWEATERYANDMARKET


his recipe tastes so nostalgic but doesn’t contain any refined sugar or processed products! All that you need is a blender to make your own rich, silky, smooth nog with cashews, coconut milk, dates and a touch of vanilla extract. Serve it spiked if desired for a fun holiday cocktail! Serves 4

INGREDIENTS • • • • • • • •

1/2 cup cashews 1/2 cup water 1 can full fat coconut milk 6 medjool dates (pitted) 1 tsp. vanilla extract 1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon 1/4 tsp. ground nutmeg 1/4 tsp. pumpkin pie spice

DIRECTIONS 1. Soak cashews for at least 30 minutes, overnight if possible. 2. Add all ingredients into a high speed blender and blend until smooth. 3. Serve chilled over ice, or heat gently in a saucepan for a warm eggnog. It will thicken upon heating, and you may want to re-blend to remove any lumps. Garnish with cinnamon stick and star anise. 4. Stored in a sealed container, eggnog will keep in the fridge for up to 5 days. Nutrition Information for 1 serving Calories 230; protein 4 g; fat 15 g; carbs 33 g.

53  December 2020

IMPACT Magazine


Kimchi Collard Parcels with Sesame Mushroom Stuffing & Smoky Fermented Cilantro Cream

A healthy, delicious, low carb take on a Kimchi dumpling

RECIPE & PHOTOGRAPHY BY DANIELLE ARSENAULT – One of IMPACT Magazine’s Top Vegan Influencers, Raw food chef and author of Pachavega Living Foods Education from Vancouver Island, B.C. & Ometepe, Nicaragua. PACHAVEGA




hese plant-based parcels are bursting with flavour. The marinated mushrooms lend a meaty, hearty flavour which is balanced by the kimchi’s brighter, sharper, fermented flavours. This dish is great for your gut health and your taste buds! Serves 8

INGREDIENTS Parcels • 4 Collard Green Leaves, stems cut out • A handful of shredded beets and carrots • Avocado, sliced Sesame Mushroom Stuffing • 2 cups marinated and dehydrated mushrooms (see direction #3) • 1 cup Low So Kimchi • 1 Tbsp. tahini paste • 1 Tbsp. minced onion Smoky Fermented Cilantro Cream • 1 cup cashews, soaked overnight and rinsed • ¾ cup water • ½ cup spinach or kale • 2 Tbsp. lemon juice • 1 clove garlic • 2 Tbsp. kimchi juice (from the Low-Sodium Kimchi), optional • 1 tsp. liquid smoke • ¼ tsp. Himalayan pink salt, more to taste • 2 cups fresh cilantro (added by hand) • 1 Tbsp. olive oil (optional)

54  December 2020

DIRECTIONS 1. Strip the collard greens of their spine. Leave collard greens on the counter for 4 hours. They will wilt significantly and this makes them much easier to roll. 2. Meanwhile, add all stuffing ingredients to a food processor and pulse 4-5 times until mixture resembles a crumble. 3. To make the marinated and dehydrated mushrooms, combine the following in a mason jar and shake well: 1 Tbsp. of tamari, 1 Tbsp. toasted sesame oil, 1/2 Tbsp. maple syrup, 1/2 Tbsp. lemon juice. In a bowl combine mushrooms and marinade, toss. Dehydrate on Teflex sheets in a dehydrator at 115 C for 6 hours, until moisture is reduced significantly but mushrooms are not dry. 4. Prepare your Cilantro Cream. Blend all ingredients (except cilantro) in a highspeed blender until creamy, then empty into a large bowl. Add chopped cilantro and combine with a spoon. 5. Place one collard, underside-up, on your surface and place a few spoonfuls of stuffing, shredded carrots, beets, and a few slices of avocado. Roll up like a gift, folding the sides in. 6. Slice in half and serve with Smoky Fermented Cilantro Cream. Nutrition facts per serving Calories 101; protein 3 g; fat 10 g; carbs 6 g.

Smoky Fermented Cilantro Cream INGREDIENTS • • • • • • • • • • • •

2 cups cashews 1 cup water 1 Tbsp. lemon juice 1 probiotic capsule 3 cups fresh cilantro 1 cup kale ¼ cup olive oil 2 Tbsp. apple cider vinegar 2 cloves garlic 1 Tbsp. sauerkraut juice 1 tsp. liquid smoke ¼ tsp. Himalayan pink salt, more to taste

DIRECTIONS 1. Make the fermented cashew cream first by blending the ingredients on high until smooth and creamy. 2. Transfer to a mason jar with a lot of room left in the jar and leave in a warm place for 24 - 36 hours or until you see bubbles forming in the cream. The temperature of your space determines how fast your ferment goes. 3. Pulse remaining ingredients (except the cashew cream and garlic) in the food processor until well chopped but not a homogenized paste (keep some texture), then empty into a large bowl. 4. Add chopped garlic and fermented cashew cream, mix by hand then transfer to a storage container. 5. Keeps fresh for 2 weeks in the fridge (because it's fermented).

IMPACT Magazine

IMPACT Magazine

December 2020  55


Squash Puree and Squash Skin Crumble A simple yet delicious dish to add to your holiday dinner table BY CHEF DAN BARBER – Co-owner of Blue Hill Restaurant at Stone Barns, and co-founder of Row 7 ROW7SEEDS




his recipe features Row 7 Seed Company’s #898 Squash grown from Row 7 seeds - bred to reimagine the workaday butternut squash, but any squash will do!

Servers 10

INGREDIENTS • 4 squash ( butternut recommended) • 1 Tbsp. olive oil or vegetable oil • Salt and pepper



Squash Puree 1. Preheat oven to 375 F. 2. Cut the squash in half lengthwise. Using a spoon, remove the seeds. 3. Lay the squash halves, cut-side up, on a baking tray. Lightly drizzle or brush with the oil, and season with salt. 4. Roast the squash, uncovered, in the oven for about 50 minutes, until the flesh is very tender. Remove from the oven. 5. When cool enough to handle, scoop out the flesh of the squash using a spoon. Reserve the skins. 6. Place the squash in a bowl and mash with a fork. Or, for a smoother texture, transfer the squash to a blender and puree. Adjust seasoning with salt and pepper as needed. 7. Serve puree with squash skin crumble. Squash Skin Crumble 1. Preheat an oven to its lowest setting—150 F is ideal. 2. Transfer the reserved roasted squash skins to a parchment-lined baking tray. Place the tray in the oven for 8-10 hours, or until the squash skins are completely dry and brittle. 3. Remove tray from the oven and allow to cool. 4. Transfer the dried skins into a blender or food processor and blend to a medium-fine crumble consistency. Season with salt to taste. Nutrition facts per serving Calories 210 protein 5 g; fat 1 g; carbs 51 g.

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Easy Vegan Stuffing with Cranberries Serve this beautiful dish at your holiday table and you’ll be sure to shock your guests with how good it smells and tastes! RECIPE & PHOTOGRAPHY BY MARIA KOUTSOGIANNIS – Recipe developer & food blogger at FoodByMaria in Calgary, AB FOODBYMARIA



his is one of those amazing holiday recipes for people who can’t believe how good vegan food can taste! With this easy and delicious stuffing, you won’t need any meat to impress. Just like the real thing, this vegan stuffing is super fragrant and loaded with flavour. Cranberries are an amazing berry for the holidays — they add so much flavour along with the sage, thyme and other herbs. Nothing is more festive!

Serves 6-8

INGREDIENTS • • • • • • • • • • • • •

Around 7–8 cups day-old bread – country style is preferred 3 vegan sausages, crumbled 3 Tbsp. vegan butter 1 large white onion, finely minced 3 medium-sized celery stalks, finely minced 3 cloves garlic, pressed 1 heaping cup fresh cranberries Egg replacement – for 2 eggs, 2 eggs also works fine if you’re not vegan 3 cups vegetable stock (unsalted) or 1 1/2 Tbsp. vegetable stock paste and 3 cups water, well combined 2 Tbsp. chopped fresh sage 1 Tbsp. chopped fresh thyme 1 Tbsp. chopped fresh rosemary Season with salt & pepper to taste

DIRECTIONS 1. Preheat oven to 300 F. Lightly grease a rimmed baking sheet and set aside. Arrange bread in a single layer on a baking sheet, lightly drizzle with olive oil, salt and pepper. Bake, tossing occasionally until completely dried out and crispy; this may take up to 45 minutes. Once cooked let cool on the baking sheet then transfer to a very large bowl. 2. While your bread crisps up, heat a large skillet or pot over mediumhigh heat. Using your hands break apart your sausage into crumbled pieces, place into pot and stir with a wooden spoon or spatula until browned (8–10 minutes). Once your sausage is hot throughout transfer to a bowl with bread but do not stir. 3. In the same skillet or pan heat your vegan butter on medium-high heat. Cook onions, celery and garlic, stirring often to avoid burning while scraping browned bits off bottom of pan. Transfer the mixture to the bread and sausage bowl and let cool. 4. Combine cranberries, vegan egg, vegetable broth, sage, thyme, rosemary, salt, and pepper in a medium bowl. Add to the bread and sausage mixture and fold gently until thoroughly combined. 5. Increase oven temperature to 350 F. Transfer mixture to a prepared dish (13x9x2), pour over the vegetable stock, cover with foil and bake for 40–45 minutes. Uncover and continue to bake until top is browned and crisped around 30-45 minutes. Note Stuffing can be prepared ahead of time but not baked. Refrigerate overnight and cook as instructed in the last step of the instructions. Nutrition facts per serving Calories 331; protein 13 g; fat 8 g; carbs 51 g.

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Eggnog Ice Cream Sandwiches I scream, you scream, we all scream for eggnog ice cream! RECIPE & PHOTOGRAPHY BY ARIANNE JONES – Canadian Olympian, chef & holistic nutritional consultant in Calgary, AB ARIANNEJONES



his recipe from Jones’s ebook Feel Good Treats is a creamy, rich, and guilt-free dessert! Gluten-free, vegan and refined-sugar-free, a whole bowl of this plant-based ice cream is sure to curb your cravings.

Makes 1 Litre

Makes 20 cookies



Eggnog • 2 heaping cups of cashews, soaked • 2 ripe medium-sized bananas • 1 vanilla bean OR 1 tsp. of vanilla extract • 1 tsp. freshly squeezed lemon juice • ½ cup maple syrup • 1 ¼ tsp. freshly grated nutmeg, to taste • ½ tsp. ground cinnamon, to taste • Pinch of sea salt

Cookies • 2 ½ cups rolled oats • ½ cup coconut sugar • 1 tsp. ground cinnamon • 1 ½ Tbsp. ground ginger • ½ tsp. baking soda • 1 tsp. baking powder • ½ tsp. sea salt • ⅓ cup coconut oil • ⅓ cup brown rice syrup • 2 Tbsp. water • 1 tsp. vanilla extract

DIRECTIONS 1. Place cashews in a medium bowl and cover with filtered water. Soak for a minimum of 4 hours or overnight. Drain and rinse well. 2. Combine cashews (soaked and drained) and all other ingredients in a high speed blender and blend until completely smooth. Transfer the ice cream mixture into a covered container and place in the freezer for 4 hours or overnight to set. 3. Thaw for 10-15 minutes before serving. Enjoy! NOTE • If you forgot to soak your cashews overnight, here is a quick soaking hack: Place your cashews into a pot, cover with water, and bring to a boil. Remove from heat, cover, and let sit for about 15 minutes. Drain and rinse. They should be softened right up.

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DIRECTIONS 1. Preheat the oven to 350 F (175 C). Prepare two baking sheets with parchment paper. 2. In a food processor blend your oats to a rough flour mixture (a few oats can still be visible). Add to a large bowl and mix with coconut sugar, cinnamon, ginger, baking soda, baking powder and salt. Combine. 3. In a small saucepan over medium low heat, melt the coconut oil. Once melted, whisk in brown rice syrup*, water and vanilla until the mixture is loose and well combined. 4. Pour the wet ingredients into the large bowl of dry ingredients and combine well. 5. Scoop dough with spoon. Place dough balls on the sheet, giving ample room between as they will expand a lot! 6. Depending on how big you want your ice cream sandwiches to be: 1 Tbsp. balls will be 8-10 cm (3-4”) in diameter, 1 tsp. sized balls will give you 3-4 cm (1-2”) cookies for mini sandwiches.

7. Bake for 8-12 minutes depending on their size and let rest for 5-10 minutes before removing from the baking sheet as they will harden once cooled. Don’t be tempted to touch them right out of the oven. 8. Store in a tightly sealed container with parchment paper between layers for up to a week. *Brown rice syrup is incredibly sticky and the dough can be hard to work with. Pro tip: coat your spoon or measuring cup with coconut oil before dipping it into the syrup and scooping the dough. To assemble the sandwiches: 1. Since the cookies are so fragile, it is easier to assemble them while the ice cream is soft, as pressing down on the cookie will cause it to crack. 2. If ice cream is fully frozen, let thaw to a soft serve consistency before assembling. 3. Scoop ice cream onto one cookie . Place another cookie on top and gently press to set. 4. Place sandwiches in the freezer to fully set for 4 hours. 5. When you’re ready to enjoy, let thaw for 5 minutes before eating. NOTES • Sandwiches will keep in the freezer for about a month. • The cookies will get a bit tacky and lose their crunch the longer they are stored, as they will absorb the moisture of the ice cream. • Store in a sealed container so they do not absorb the smells of the freezer. Nutrition facts per Ice Cream Sandwich Calories 287; protein 5g; fat 13 g, carbs 25 g.

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December 2020  59


Vanilla Chai Cinnamon Buns Nothing says the holidays like these ooey gooey spiced cinnamon buns RECIPE & PHOTOGRAPHY BY MARIA KOUTSOGIANNIS – Recipe developer & food blogger at FoodByMaria in Calgary, AB FOODBYMARIA



hese super-soft, easy-to-make vegan cinnamon buns have a yummy holiday spin with the addition of vanilla and chai. Whip these up for dessert this holiday season, or just make them as a sweet snack that your whole family will love. Serves 12-14

INGREDIENTS Dough • 2 packets of fast-rising or active yeast (8 g each) • 4 1/2 cups all-purpose flour + some until you reach a non-sticky consistency • 11/2 cups almond milk • 1 chai tea bag • 1/4 cup brown sugar • 1 egg replacement • 1/2 tsp. salt • 1/4 cup vegan butter, melted Dusting • 1/2 cup brown or white sugar • 2 tsp. cinnamon

Sticky Sugar Syrup • 3/4 cup brown sugar • 2 Tbsp. maple syrup • 2 tsp. organic vanilla extract • 1 tsp. cinnamon • 1/2 cup vegan butter, cold or room temperature Cinnamon Icing • 1/2 cup vegan cream cheese • 1/4 cup vegan butter, softened • 1 cup powdered sugar • 1 tsp. organic vanilla extract

DIRECTIONS 1. In a small bowl, add 1 cup flour and yeast. Stir and set aside. 2. To a small pot, add almond milk and teabag. Heat for 5 or so minutes or until warm. 3. In a large bowl, whisk together the warm milk tea infusion, brown sugar, egg replacement, salt and melted butter until well combined. 4. Into the large bowl, add the flour and yeast mixture. Whisk for around 2-3 minutes or until everything is well combined and lots of bubbles have developed. Then stir in the remainder of the flour, slowly, and add more as you need. You want it to be pliable but not too sticky. Knead for 5-10 minutes and add flour to the surface area to make the process easy. 5. Grease the sides of a large bowl and add in your dough. Add oil to the top of your dough and place a damp cloth over the top of the bowl. Leave in a warm place for around 15-30 minutes. 6. While your dough recipe prepares, make your sticky sauce by adding all of your ingredients into a pot and simmering on low heat until completely melted. Whisk/stir constantly to avoid burning. Once ready, remove from heat and let cool. This should only take a few minutes. 7. You can now preheat your oven to 350 F and grab a baking dish – I used a 16" L x 9" W x 2.5" H. 8. Once your sticky sauce has cooled, add it to the base of this baking dish and make sure it’s spread around evenly. 9. Once your dough has risen, punch a hole into the middle of the dough (this is very satisfying) and let it rise by double once again. 10. Using a rolling pin, roll out the dough into a large rectangle, around 20 x 14 x 1, but use whichever dimensions work best for you and your baking dish! 11. Once you have flattened the dough, sprinkle with some brown sugar and cinnamon (add as much or as little as you’d like). Roll the dough width-wise, keeping it tight, and cut into around 12-14 rolls. Place them onto the sticky sauce and set them aside to rise till doubled in size. 12. Once ready, bake for 25-35 minutes. 13. To make your icing, simply add your ingredients to a deep bowl and blend using hand mixer for around 1-2 minutes. 14. Once your cinnamon buns are ready, spread the icing over top and enjoy these babies hot! 15. They last for one week in a tightly sealed container, kept at room temperature. Nutrition facts per serving Calories 454 protein 5 g; fat 17 g; carbs 68 g.

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Old-fashioned Ginger Snap Cookies Make your house smell like heaven with this twist on a classic treat RECIPE & PHOTOGRAPHY BY MARIA KOUTSOGIANNIS – Recipe developer & food blogger at FoodByMaria in Calgary, AB FOODBYMARIA



hese cookies are quick, easy, and perfect to whip up during the holiday season with the added benefit of leaving your whole house smelling deliciously sweet.

Makes 16 cookies

INGREDIENTS • • • • • • •

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1. Preheat your oven to 350 F and line two baking sheets with parchment paper and set aside. 2. In a large mixing bowl, combine butter and sugars with a hand mixer or whisk until smooth. Mix in the molasses and plant milk. Mix until well combined. 3. Begin to add the flour, ginger, cinnamon, baking soda and baking powder. Mix until combined (if you’re not using a hand mixer, I suggest using a wooden spoon). 4. Place your mixture into the fridge for 15 minutes. This helps with forming the balls but is not necessary if you’re short on time. 5. Combine the 3 Tbsp. of white sugar and cinnamon in a small bowl. 6. Using a 1 1/2 Tbsp. measuring spoon scoop out dough and roll into balls. Now roll your balls in the cinnamonsugar mixture and roll around until well coated (this step is optional). Then place 8 cookies on each baking sheet and space about 2-3 inches apart. Use the back of your fork to create a crisscross pattern on the top of the cookie. 7. Bake for 11-12 minutes. Remove from oven, let cool for 2 minutes on the sheet, then completely on a cooling rack.

3/4 cup vegan butter 3/4 cup brown sugar 1/4 cup white sugar 1/4 cup molasses 5 Tbsp. plant milk 2 tsp. vanilla extract 2 cups all-purpose flour

• • • • • •

2 tsp. ginger powder 1 tsp. cinnamon 1 tsp. baking soda 1/2 tsp. baking powder 3 Tbsp. white sugar 1 tsp. cinnamon

NOTES • When flattening the cookie, be sure to dip the fork in sugar between pressing to help them not stick. • The recipe can easily be doubled or tripled. • Cookies will last up to 1 week in a tightly sealed container at room temperature, or 2 weeks in the fridge. • To freeze, let your cookies cool completely and place them in a tightly sealed container in the freezer for up to 2 months. Nutrition facts per serving Calories 205; protein 2 g; fat 9 g; carbs 29 g.

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We suggest the vegan-friendly BotaPro bota bag for all social beverages.

What’s in Your Wineskin? A little something to warm you up in the back country

BY LAURIE MACKAY – Wine Columnist and Sommelier CBC Radio One in Calgary, AB SOULVINES


inter is here and the mountains are calling! This year more than ever Canadians are planning to get outside and play in the snow. If you are one of the many, consider packing along a wineskin. Once an essential piece of gear for skiers in the 1960s and ‘70s, the wineskin fell out of style in the ‘80s, but this pandemic is the perfect time to bring it back. Gone are the days of passing it around and sharing with friends. Now, to be safe, the wineskin needs to be our own personal container. There is nothing like a little wine and fresh air to bring a boost to the soul and the immune system! The wineskin has a long history in Spain where it is known as the bota bag or “botas de vino,” originally used by shepherds. It is easily recognizable by its kidney-shaped, plastic nozzle and the long-braided shoulder strap which allows for hands-free transport. Bota bags use a pine or juniper resin to keep sealed. These original wine skins needed to be broken in and seasoned to ensure water tightness and reduce the possibility of the resin affecting the wine. Although the more modern wineskins have latex liners, I still recommend rinsing your wineskin thoroughly first with water and then with an inexpensive wine to remove any residual taste from

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the liner. Once the wineskin has been rinsed, it is ready to hold your favourite elixir. To christen your wineskin, pick something special to you. Wineskins like wine, they get better with age. This year, perhaps this old favourite will help make your winter a bit more fun. What is in my wineskin? I am on a port wine kick lately, so my pick is the Taylor Fladgate Late Bottled Vintage Port 2015. Taylor Fladgate pioneered this style in 1965, so 2015 marked their 50th anniversary. A Late Bottle Vintage, or LBV, is a port from a single vintage that has been aged in the barrel four to six years, and is ready to drink upon release. For a wine to be called a port, it must be made in the Douro Valley in Portugal. However, many fortified wines around the world are made in a “port style.” Or buy local with the Black Sage Vineyard Pipe 2010 from the Okanagan Valley. Both the Taylor Fladgate LBV Port and the Black Sage Vineyard Pipe are perfect for the holidays. A bit decadent, their lush flavours of black cherry, cassis and blackberry will take the chill off when you are out on the trail. Pair it with some dark chocolate for a true out-of-body experience! Now it is your turn: #whatisinyourwineskin?



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