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Joshua Bergman


Mark Tewksbury + Anastasia Bucsis





North of extraordinary With great technique, your fitness goals are just around the corner. With great Technik, an Audi gives you the perfect driving experience at Audi Edmonton North. The Audi Q5 achieves a class of its own. With its distinct profile, quattro permanent all-wheel drive and an 8-speed Tiptronic transmission, the 2017 Audi Q5 has carved its place on Edmonton roads as the SUV that has it all. Sporty, progressive, spacious and functional. And fit. The 2017 Audi Q5 is the perfect fit for Edmonton streets. Visit Audi Edmonton North for the perfect Q5 experience that is truly north of extraordinary.

On Stony Plain NW at The Henday

Audi Edmonton North 18855 Stony Plain Road NW Edmonton, AB (587) 772-AUDI (2834) local or 1 (855) 642-AUDI toll-free for more details. NORTH OF EXTRAORDINARY

Image shown is a 2017 Audi Q5. Dealer #4991570














may/june 17



contributors LINDSAY GEE, PhD


Founder of Hot Mama Health & Fitness, writer, brand influencer, lover of peanut butter cups and wine (not necessarily at the same time, but quite possibly) Lindsay is a Health warrior, passionate about supporting others to find their best life and filling her days with a business she adores, a community of women she cherishes and a family she loves with her entire heart and soul.

Christal Sczebel is a Certified Holistic Nutritionist and the Owner of Pure & Simple Nutrition located in Edmonton, Alberta. She is also an avid blogger at her little space on the web, Christal aims to help others discover their best health through nourishing and balanced eating, self-love, and developing sustainable habits that last!. She is passionate about getting her clients and readers off of the dieting rollercoaster and into a place of balance and true enjoyment of whole foods. Christal lives in Edmonton with her husband and two fur-babies. She loves to stay active, eat good food, travel, host dinner parties and blog about it all!

AMBER PARADIS Amber Paradis is a Certified Holistic Nutrition Consultant and a Spiritual Healer trained in Shamanism. Her approach to achieving optimal health and happiness is through supporting physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual health. As part of her health routine, she regularly meditates, is active, and nourishes her body with whole foods.

JEAN-FRANÇOIS DUFOUR (MKin & BSc) Jean-François has 21 years of experience as a strength and conditioning and wellness coach. He has a Masters in Kinesiology and is a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist, a LM200hr Meditation Instructor, a Reiki Master and Qigong Healer and also uses Nutrition, Personal Wisdom and Nature Therapy to help clients optimize health and experience more joy.




editor’s note While preparing for our special PRIDE edition of YEG Fitness, I did a lot of reflecting. If you’ve been reading along for the past four years, you’d know that we are all about promoting diversity and not typecasting a certain body shape or ability as the definition of fitness. When I get a comment about a post on Instagram that the image isn’t showing fitness, my response is to always ask what it means to be fit. Does it mean you can do one-hundred pushups? Does it mean you can run 10km without feeling like you’re going to cough up your lungs? Last year at this time, we featured man and woman on our cover and at the time we felt like we were taking a risk. It wasn’t your “typical” fitness magazine cover. They were regular people, doing their best to fit in and be the best people they could be. They had jobs. They had families. They had fitness goals. And they were from the LGBTQ community. We weren’t sure how our readers would take it, but we took a stance of “who cares”. We made a decision at that time that if we were going to promote fitness being something that anyone can achieve and that there was no true measure of fitness, then we needed to support our LGBTQ friends. At our launch party for that edition, I shared how as a young kid playing hockey in rural Alberta, I grew up accepting that it was ok to make a joke about someone who was gay. That it was only a joke and it wasn’t hurting anyone. While I wasn’t one to poke fun or ridicule directly, I had no problem laughing along. I refused to call out the person when they were making a crude remark or comment about someone’s appearance or personality and when I think back, that was just as bad as making the comments myself… In this edition of YEG Fitness, we show solidarity with our LGBTQ friends, family and colleagues. The guy or girl on our team or working out next to us at the gym. We share a story from a pair of Olympians who grew up in different eras and see how things have changed in sports over the past thirty years (and some things that haven’t). We also share an inspiring story from a young man that I’ve known from his time in high school and watched him grow into the amazing, confident person he is today. We even had a chance to talk with an Oiler and the You Can Play project president about how professional sports leagues are doing their part to change the conversation in their locker rooms. So I hope you’ll join us in our commitment to making the gym, the locker room, and the playing field a place without discrimination. A place where everyone feels welcome regardless of their abilities or gender. Because at the end of the day, we are all part of this YEG Fitness community.


Printed in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada.

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No part of this publication may be copied or reprinted without the permission of YEG Fitness. The fitness and nutritional information in this publication are not intended to replace professional medical advice. Readers are encouraged to consult a health professional before beginning or changing in their fitness or nutritional activities. Opinions expressed in this publication are those of the contributor and not those of YEG Fitness or its employees and associates. Advertising in this publication does not indicate an endorsement by YEG Fitness.




Beyond Muscle Nutrition Beyond Muscle Nutrition focuses on re-gaining balance in the body. Whether you've been diagnosed with an ailment or are just wanting to get healthy, we address several areas of concern so you can look and feel great. All recommendations are suggested based on your current lifestyle and belief. This is so your results can be realistic, rewarding and long lasting. Packages start at $100 and can be fully customized to suit your needs.

LifeRoots Here at LifeRoots we collaborate with you to shift from living life in “damage-control” mode toward embracing what genuinely feels right and more true to you. Pick from individual and couples counseling, or enroll in a selection of group programs targeted to address your relationship with food, strengthen emotional regulation, build healthy relationships, boost your confidence or let go of trauma. Schedule a free consultation today to see how you can start living the life you deserve.

Erin Smandych Culinary Nutrition Erin Smandych Culinary Nutrition brings the principles of holistic nutrition together with unique and nourishing recipes that make healthy eating a delight. She offers one-on-one coaching that will get you in the kitchen and give you all the tools you need to reach your health goals with delicious and satisfying food. She also offers private chef services that cater to busy, health-conscious individuals looking for delectable meals tailored to their unique dietary needs.

YEG YOGI YEG YOGI is Edmonton's first Nomadic yoga studio and with pop up classes all over the city, we are committed to bringing yoga to anyone and everyone. Our latest and greatest class is Sweat Ritual, which happens on Monday nights downtown at The Chvrch of John (10260 103 St NW). Join us for a candlelit night of yoga and hot, electro jams for a yoga experience like no other.

SMRT Health SMRT Health is an integrative health clinic with a group of practitioners who share a common goal: to create a space that transforms the health of every patient on a deeper lasting level. Our approach works because of the integration of food and nutrition, acupuncture, massage therapy, psychotherapy and naturopathic medicine informed by evidence based paradigm. Our patients succeed because of their access to a wealth of knowledge. We treat all facets of who you are. SMRT Health uses stress management techniques, nutrition, high quality supplements, pain management and any other support you need to achieve your optimum health.

Health First Online Program An online health program created by cancer survivor Tanya West to help you create a plan of action to become the healthiest version of you! If you have faced health challenges and now want to maintain a healthy preventative lifestyle and want to regain your energy and vitality and just jumping to the gym isn’t a solution, then it might be time to try a different approach. Let me share with you my 8 key essentials to living a healthier, longer and less stressful life. Let’s get that zing and zest back into your life!




what's happening

Kidney Run & Walk - May 7, 2017 The Kidney Run & Walk helps raise funds for the Kidney Foundation of Canada. Come and run a 5k, 10k, or walk a 2k and help a great cause! Following the run and walk, participants will enjoy light refreshments provided by local merchants, a silent auction, plus there will be a 50/50. All participants who have registered receive a goody bag.

RunWild - May 7, 2017 Lace up your sneaks and join 2,000 other racers for the Annual Leading Edge RunWild races in St. Albert, Alberta. This event features 5k, 10k, and half marathon race distances.

Rise Up Challenge: Spring Edition - May 13, 2017 The Rise Up Challenge (RUC); which stands for Resistance, Integrity, Strength and Endurance, is an event that pairs obstacle course racing (OCR), trail running and a dash of orienteering to create a unique experience. The races feature a long course (15k - 25k), or a short course (5k - 10k) in length and may have 15 – 25 challenges along the way. The challenges typically harness nature and the elements to create tough roadblocks that may require you to grind it out for 1, 5, 15+ minutes until you’ve succeeded.

Gorilla Run - May 13, 2017 The Edmonton Gorilla Run is a charity fun run with a difference. Everyone who takes part wears a full gorilla costume - from fluffy head to furry toe - and helps raise funds for the Mountain Gorilla Conservation Fund, the international charity working to save the world's last remaining mountain gorillas and keeping Dian Fossey's dream alive for the past 28 years.

SHOPPERS LOVE. YOU. Run For Women - May 27, 2017 The SHOPPERS LOVE. YOU. Run for Women is Canada's only national women's race series offering a 5K, 10K & Little Steps Girls 1K. Raising funds for women's mental health programs in your community. You know how much fun it is to be 'just us' when you’re with your best girlfriends? Now imagine that feeling and multiply it by 1000, and you’ve got the ultimate race experience. We’ve got races in multiple cities, and we can’t wait to get to yours! This race is about sisterhood and how our friends make us laugh, motivate us, and keep us going!

Woman2Warrior - May 28, 2017 Woman2Warrior Edmonton is a women's optional timed event covering 5 kms of trails, and terrain. The course features obstacles to test your strength, agility, balance, and sense of adventure. You may enter as an individual or as a team, but each person must raise a minimum $300 to participate. There will be awards & prizes for the top overall fundraisers and costumes. Recruit the support of friends, family and coworkers to help you reach your fundraising goal.

Color Me Rad - Jun 10, 2017 If you're allergic to the metric system, corn starch, or unbridled joy, you'd probably be more comfortable watching Matlock than at the starting blocks of this color-filled 5k. But, if you're itching for a great time and not from a bad case of diaper rash, Color Me Rad Edmonton is the run for you.

River Valley Revenge - Jun 10, 2017 River Valley Revenge will challenge you with the best that the Edmonton river valley has to offer. Amazing single track, calf burning uphills and heart stopping downhills will make this a run to remember. The trail starts with an gentle warmup before your first climb to the top of Esso hill. Take your time. There is 10 km of double track for you to find your pace and get ready for what is to come.

Edmonton Pride Run & Walk - Jun 11, 2017 Participate in a 3k, 5km or 10k run/walk distance with the Edmonton LGBTQ community at Argyll Park. Edmonton Pride Run & Walk is a non-profit event promoting access to inclusive fitness and highlighting the diversity of the LGBTQ community. This event is truly for everyone. Whether you are an advanced runner or just want to enjoy a leisurely walk in the river valley with family or friends, we want you to participate!

Do it for Dads - Jun 18, 2017 Do It For Dad's Walk/Run is a 5km family-friendly, fun event, hosted on Father's Day, that raises awareness and funds for the leading cancer affecting Canadian men and the families that love them. Registration is $35 or fundraise $125 and have your registration fee waived. Funds raised are helping advance research that has the greatest potential to improve prostate cancer prevention, diagnosis, and treatment to ensure a better quality of life for survivors.



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Growing up, I wasn't just an active child; I was the poster girl for athletics. I was involved in badminton, cycling, competitive running, weightlifting and anything else that got me moving.

son staring back at me in the mirror was. Where was the vibrant girl who would cycle for 4 hours then go play 2 hours of badminton and still have energy for a run? I didn't recognize myself.

Fast forward to my twenties. I became far less active, and started making worse and worse food choices. I stopped being accountable for my own health, and I suffered as a result. My weight skyrocketed and eventually I became almost completely sedentary. For 12 years I stayed in that terrible place, unable to do so many of the activities I loved because I could barely walk 10 steps without getting very winded. Exercising felt like a punishment.

I decided that I had lost 12 years of my life, and I wasn’t going to lose any more. I made a promise to myself that I would do whatever it takes for however long it needs to take to get my health back and return to being the active person I knew and loved being.

In December 2015, I hit rock bottom. I realized that I didn't know who this unhealthy per-

I lost 140lbs over that year by making healthy food choices and getting as active as I could. At first, it was hard to walk more than a few steps. But as I strengthened my body and fuelled it with healthy foods instead of the processed junk I had been

consuming for over a decade. Step by step, I started to uncover who I was. I began my journey in December 2015. By summer 2016, I was able to do my first run across the High Level bridge in more than 10 years. When I finished that first run bathed in a beautiful setting sun glistening off the North Saskatchewan river, I sat at the edge of a hill overlooking the river valley and cried because I felt like I had finally been released from a long prison sentence. By the end of that summer, I ran a 5k marathon. This January, a little over a year since I decided to reclaim my health and my life, I was able to hold a plank for 5 minutes.

ing my body. I'm preparing to compete at the National level for dragon boat racing this summer. I train with weights 3 times a week, run another 3 times a week, and do intensive stretching on my "day off." Having to earn my health back after having everything taken from me for so long gave me a much deeper appreciation of everything I used to take for granted. If this last year has taught me anything, it is that no matter how far away our fitness goals seem, we can move towards them. If we can't run, we walk, and if we can't walk, we crawl, because as long as we're moving forward, we're always getting closer to the finish line.

Today my life is defined by my commitment to better-




Book Your Alberta Adventure This Spring BY TRAVEL ALBERTA Alberta is loaded with outdoor summer adventures you can’t find anywhere else. Excavate a dinosaur fossil still half buried in the moonlike landscape of the Canadian Badlands. Take a gondola up a mountainside in the Canadian Rockies and photograph grizzly bears in their natural environment. Stand on top of a glacier that was formed thousands of years ago and disappears a little each day. See First Nations drumming and dancing at an aboriginal site used for more than 8,000 years. Ride horseback across the prairies on a real western cattle ranch. Live your dreams and explore your passions – just remember to breathe. BOATING AND SWIMMING There’s nothing better than a soft sandy beach on a hot summer day and Alberta has plenty of those crystal clear lakes, perfect for sunning or boating. Rent a jet ski, a fly board, a canoe or a paddleboard and have an adventure. Go on a boat tour, stand at the bow of the boat and stare into perfectly turquoise water. Let the fresh breeze ruffle your hair and watch the sun glitter on the lake like tiny diamonds. Gaze up at the mountains and marvel at the forces of nature that forged this perfect setting. CANOEING AND KAYAKING The only sound is water gently lapping at the side of your boat and trickling off your paddle as you slice through the turquoise water. The blissful quiet is broken by fish splashing on the surface and the call of a loon. Paddling on Alberta’s scenic lakes and rivers is a day with nature at its finest. Learn a traditional mode of transportation essential to aboriginals, early explorers and fur traders. Pack a picnic and paddle out to a distant shore or take on Alberta’s only backcountry canoe circuit. Step up your fitness, step into a kayak, and run some whitewater. CLIMBING AND MOUNTAINEERING The Canadian Rockies have long been a dream destination for climbers and mountaineers. You’ll find great spots throughout Alberta’s mountain parks. Everyone can experience this exhilarating sport – there are climbing adventures for all ages and skill levels, even if you’ve never done it before. Feel the thrill of conquering your first rock wall or Via Ferrata. Learn the skills to climb over glaciers and scramble up a mountainside. With the expert instruction of professional guides, you’ll be scampering along rock walls with the mountain goats in no time. And if rock climbing is your passion, you’ve come to the right place.




CYCLING AND MOUNTAIN BIKING Two wheels will take you places where four wheels could never go. And Alberta is brimming with places – pedal leisurely through an alpine meadow, a boreal forest or on wide paved shoulders under an endless prairie sky. Cycle urban pathways through gorgeous river valleys. Challenge yourself to some extreme mountain biking or join a Gran Fondo through a national park. Put the Icefields Parkway, one of the most scenic rides in the world, on your bucket list. HIKING Alberta's infinite variety of landscapes can satisfy any hiker's wanderlust. Thousands of kilometers of trails beckon for all abilities, from short easy rambles to classic hikes and multi-day treks. Epic scenery awaits in our protected parks and wildlands. Try heli-hiking in our Canadian Rockies backcountry and discover secluded alpine lakes and mountain meadows where wildflowers and wildlife abounds. Explore the mysterious Canadian Badlands and witness the work of eons of erosion that sculpted this strangely compelling terrain. Discover the silence of a northern boreal forest. Wander through grasslands stretching to the horizon. Our temperate climate is ideal for hiking, from spring through autumn. WHITEWATER RAFTING Feel the spray on your face as you paddle madly through seething water. Shoot through narrow canyons, dodge the rocks and swerve around the next bend in the river. Few experiences get the adrenaline pumping like whitewater rafting in Alberta. Go for an afternoon, or spend a few nights under the stars as you make your way along the course of the river. Feel the thrill of the rapids in an unspoiled natural setting and keep your eyes open for deer, elk and bear on the riverbanks. There are trips for all skill levels and professional guides who provide everything you need. GOLFING Imagine a golf course surrounded by towering mountains and meandering past glacier-fed lakes where elk, caribou, or bears are regular visitors on the back nine. It exists in Alberta. The Fairmont Jasper Park Lodge golf course is continually ranked one of the best in the world. But it’s just one of many amazing choices, with more than 250 spread around the province. You can tee off in some of the most surreal surroundings on the planet – from the Canadian Rockies to the Canadian Badlands. And if you’re a die-hard duffer, endless twilight in high summer up north means hitting the links until close to midnight.

EVERYONE CAN PLAY The You Can Play Challenge The You Can Play (YCP) campaign began five years ago, after a 2010 car accident that took the life  of 21-year-old Brendan Burke: the youngest son of current Calgary Flames president of hockey operations  Brian Burke.  Just months prior, Brendan came out to the hockey world as a gay man while he was the manager of the hockey team at Miami University in Ohio. The NHL and its players have partnered with You Can Play since April 2013 on activities fighting homophobia in sports, along with removing stereotypes related to gender, ethnicity and disabilities. To further the cause, each NHL club has an LGBTQ ambassador who is responsible for attending events and responding to media questions or issues.  J.J. Hebert, Senior Director of Hockey Communications with the Edmonton Oilers, asked Matt Hendricks if he’d be interested in representing the Oilers as the YCP Ambassador this season. “Being a big Andrew Ference fan and what he stands for I jumped at the opportunity,” says Hendricks. “It gave me a chance to follow in his footsteps and reach out further into the great YEG community.” In a sport long dominated by having a macho attitude laced with negative stereotypes towards the LGBTQ community, it’s obvious that the culture is changing. “Our team is full of great people that have the same feelings towards YCP as I do,” he says. “We are all extremely happy to be a part of it and what it stands for.” Brian Kitts is one of the original founders and current president of YCP and explains that the program began out of a love they had for sports and the negative treatment many of their brothers, friends and teammates received on and off to playing surface. “You Can Play literally came together after a bunch of beers in a bar in Denver,” he says. “We all had good contacts in sports and thought we could probably find several pro athletes to say they didn't like the stereotype of all athletes being homophobic.” They underestimated that number. They now have hundreds.

The act of standing in front of a camera and saying the words 'gay athlete' sends a message that simple equality is important to someone. It takes place at an individual level. When Braden Holtby (Washington Capitals), puts a You Can Play logo on his goalie mask and then auctions it off, it sends a message.  When the NHL has a spokesman for You Can Play from every team in the league it sends a first-of-its-kind message in sports.  When the CFL puts a You Can Play logo on every team's shirt it's important.  And when the NFL has its players come with You Can Play to talk with homeless LGBTQ youth it lets those kids know they're important and it opens up some minds at the player level. “At the most basic level, we're most successful when we talk about people as contributors to a team - heart, talent and commitment matter, not race, religion or who someone loves,” says Kitts. “The language we use to put other people down, sometimes without meaning it, kills a good team and athletes know it.” Former NFL player Wade Davis is currently the Executive Director for Professional Sports Outreach and knows first hand the challenges facing gay athletes. He describes a players role in the community as a role model as they have a platform to affect social change. “[It’s important] for an athlete to use their platform to vocally come out and support the LGBTQ community and YCP is critical to LGBTQ youth who don't feel like they are seen, valued and/or included,” he says. Guys like Hendricks are the key to changing minds about what makes a great athlete and it has nothing to do with sexual orientation or gender identity. “As I'm sure all parents feel, we want to help our kids to achieve their dreams,” says Hendricks. “I'm a true believer that for people to be successful in this world they need to be comfortable in their own skin. It's important for me to show my children that no matter what color, ethnicity, or gender you are or what religion you follow, everyone is important and deserves opportunity to shine. After all, they are our future."




A Powerful Life Lesson from my Friend, Scottie Mergaert BY KAYLOR BETTS – TNP FITNESS It was an emotional day for me. One of those days that from the moment I woke up, it seemed as though a snowball of events were unfolding against me. Then, as I got to my work, TNP Fitness I received some inconvenient news that made me unhappy. I continued on with business as usual. Going from one thing to the next, getting increasingly stressed out and angry. This particular morning was a Tuesday. One of the three days in the week, that my long-time friend Scottie Mergaert comes in for a personal training session. I thought about calling Scottie and his mom to cancel; however, for some reason I decided against. After deciding to keep the appointment, I was completely unaware that I was about to learn one of the most important lessons of my life. You can always hear Scotties footsteps walking up the stairs into the studio. Scottie is never in a rush. He stays completely in the moment at all times. When he enters the room there is a sense of cool and calmness that is contagious to everyone around him. The day he walked through the door, looked right at me and stopped. After taking a couple seconds to analyze my mood, he bursts into a big, contagious smile. My mood couldn’t help but lighten for a brief moment. However, I was still unable to shake my bad mood. But I still had to finish the session.“Hey pal, hop on the treadmill and start warming up” I said. Soon after, I shouted out some words of frustration after reading another inconvenient email. Scottie, now watching me closely said the two words that forever changed the way I operate, “Kaylor… Relax.” I wish the whole world could see how Scottie articulated these words. This simple phrase, coming from Scottie, struck me like a ton of bricks. Here is a man the same age as me, who could use all the excuses in the world not to be happy, and to not make it to a workout. There I was, forgetting to be grateful for my opportunities in life, having a pity party about some little things that didn’t go my way. In the almost five years we have been training together, Scottie has never presented an excuse to cancel a workout. Every single session he shows up with a smile on his face. Right then and there—with those powerful words— Scottie taught me everything I ever need to know. That the first key to life is just showing up. And the second is to show up with a smile. No matter what. I have been friends with Scottie for over fifteen years now and I can tell you that I have learnt more about true success from him than from anyone else in my life. He has taught me that success is not money. It is not achievement or notoriety, or a fancy car and a fancy house. Although those things are nice to have, Scottie has shown me, that real success is a mindset. Success is the ability to live in a beautiful state, in every moment, no matter what your circumstances are. Scottie is truly successful. He is one of the very few successful people that I know of.





In a world where everyone is running around chasing a bunch of meaningless, materialistic things Scottie is not chasing fulfillment in these empty things. He is fully present in every moment, and he just wants to laugh, love, and most importantly he wants the people around him to do the same. He has taught me that life is too short to be taken so seriously. He is an amazing example to the world that the only disability someone can have is a bad attitude.


1. WHAT ARE YOUR FAVORITE WAYS TO STAY FIT? Running and swimming. And I have reluctantly learned to love a bit of strengthening but not the kind that gives one a six-pack, the kind that strengthens all those random muscles that runners need to stay healthy. I have dreams about clamshells. 2. WHAT'S ON YOUR CURRENT PLAYLIST? Besides recently rediscovering my love for U2’s “The Joshua Tree” album, I have been listening to an EP on repeat by a less well-known artist, Kevin Garrett, called “False Hope”. 3. WE'RE BUYING. WHAT ARE YOU DRINKING? During the day, it would be a latte from Credo. At night or late afternoon it would be a cocktail (negroni or fresh fruit bellini) from Bar Bricco, followed by a glass (or bottle) of an Italian red wine, that I am unable to pronounce and can only point to on the menu. 4. YOU'VE GOT A CHANCE TO HAVE A MEAL WITH ONE PERSON. LIVING OR DEAD. WHO DO YOU MEET?

This may be a surprising answer but it would be David Letterman. Not a perfect human being but someone I watched growing up with my Dad, so a lot of nostalgia there and someone I admire and find super interesting for reasons you will have to ask me about in person. 5. WHAT'S YOUR GUILTY FOOD PLEASURE? Pizza and beer. And vanilla ice cream with dark chocolate chips for dessert. 6. BEST WAY THAT HELPS YOU COPE WITH STRESS? Running is my mental health therapy. Running has changed my life in so many ways. One of the biggest ways is being an outlet for the sometimes too-busy life that I lead. 7. FAVORITE THING ABOUT YEG? The River Valley. We live in the city with the largest urban park system in North America, with over 160 km of running trails. Experiencing a morning sunrise in the River Valley, especially in the fall, with changing leaves and a bit of fog is one of the most beautiful things you will ever see. New city slogan, Running Capital of Canada.

8. IF WE WERE TO LOOK IN YOUR GYM BAG RIGHT NOW, WHAT WOULD WE FIND? Running shoes, shorts, shirt, rubber bands (for non six-pack strengthening), swimming gear, and nuun tablets for electrolyte replacement. 9. A RELAXING VACATION ON A BEACH, OR A TRIP TO A BUSY CITY? WHERE WOULD THAT BE? Depends on the time of year. In the winter, it would be a beach no question. Most incredible beaches I have visited are on the island of Zanzibar off the coast of Tanzania in East Africa. In the fall, it has to be a big city with a marathon. I am running Chicago marathon this fall. 10. WHY DO YOU LOVE RUNNING? I jokingly refer to running as my other steady life partner (sorry Kent). I spend a lot of time with it, I love it to death, I can’t live without it, it frustrates me on a regular basis, but it has improved my life in infinite ways including better health, increased confidence, new friends, and giving me a new connection to my community. PHOTOS BY JEFF KELLY ARCHIVE FOUR FORTY FOUR PHOTOGRAPHY at The Base




Meditation – Less is More By Jean-François Dufour (MKin & BSc) Glitching Biowonders In my twenty plus years of coaching, I have come to terms with one thing for sure; that limitations in performance are seldom rooted in the body. The truth of it all is that we are a bazillion dollar biowonder operating on $9.99 software. I like to use the analogy of the smart phone as most of us can relate to their ubiquity. How would you treat your device if you were born knowing that you would have but one for the duration of your life, that you could never replace it, and that its neglect would negatively affect all of your tasks and experiences?





We live in a world of action and distraction where we constantly strive to do more and experience more things. And when we aren’t, we find ourselves seeking distraction. Our mind’s growing inability to keep up has negative consequences which affect our wellbeing, performance and our longevity. Without resting, recalibrating and defragmenting the mind, we start to have skewed perspectives on what we deem stressful. We impair our ability to focus and negatively affect our mood and our physiology. Stress is a well-known contributing factor to disease and to decreased quality of life. Stress is the physical manifestation of the thoughts and pressures we entertain. In this way, meditation allows us to singlehandedly decrease the physiological consequences of stress while decreasing the amount of perceived stress in our lives. We are glitching out unnecessarily!


In the realm of strength and conditioning it is well established that persistent training stimuli without adequate rest inevitably yields a decrease in performance, and is a detriment to progress. The same rings true for dietary fasting, where periods of caloric abstinence allows for the recalibration and renewed sensitivity of metabolic processes. The mind also requires rest, time to recalibrate and re-attune to the senses bringing with it increased awareness and mental acuity. The absence of thought or more realistically, the slowing of the thought train allows for a decreased stress response, improvements to our mood and our physiology not to mention increased perceptivity and focus. There are countless peer-reviewed studies demonstrating a plethora of benefits from the practice of meditation and it is no coincidence that the wisest and most evolved beings and cultures on the planet have been practicing meditation for tens of thousands of years.


So where do we start? As a meditation coach, I would love to tell you all about the various types of mantras, breathing techniques, and the healing benefits of hums, chants and vibrations. But the nuts and bolts of meditation lies in the practice of stillness and breathing. Connecting with your breath by consciously deepening your respirations and observing your thoughts without judgment is the essence of meditation. It is important not to react or become frustrated or disappointed from the presence of thoughts or from the straying of the mind as this is counterproductive. What is important to remember is not what you are doing when you are meditating, but rather, what you aren’t doing. Many people shoot themselves in the foot early on by having expectations or by putting pressure on themselves to think about nothing. Even the most experienced meditators use tools to help them increase the space between thoughts. Over time, conscious breathing becomes second nature and the number of thoughts that pops into our minds steadily decreases. There are endless tools for funneling our awareness and bringing focus to our thoughts. It might be good to learn about your mind by seeking help in exploring what meditation tools resonate with you. Most importantly, meditation is like any other form of training whereby its benefits are directly proportional to the dedication one brings to the practice. Whether you are looking to improve your wellbeing, personal relationships, athletic and/or work performance or all of the above, meditation is the cornerstone of wellbeing and performance and should be practiced by anyone with a mind.






HIGH PROTEIN Linguine with Divine Basil Pesto You could say our Basil Pesto Linguine is divine, in more ways than one. Last year, we had the pleasure of working with Sergio Dussin, Pope Francis’ official chef, who whipped up this pesto to serve with our skinnypasta™ HIGH PROTEIN Linguine. We love it because it’s fresh, delicious and ready in mere minutes. With this dish, you can satisfy your pasta craving while nourishing wellness from within. Divine, indeed.




Combine all ingredients except the Parmesan in a food processor and pulse until smooth. Transfer the pesto to a bowl and mix in the cheese.

250g skinnypasta™ HIGH PROTEIN Linguine 2 cloves of garlic 2 cups fresh basil leaves, packed 2/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil, divided 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese, freshly grated salt & freshly ground black pepper, to taste

While the pesto mixture sits, bring water to a boil in a pot and add 250g skinnypasta™ HIGH PROTEIN Linguine. Cook for one minute, check for doneness. Strain. Add the linguine to the bowl of pesto mixture and gently toss. Serve and enjoy!

Find skinnypasta HIGH PROTEIN Linguine and other TM

HIGH PROTEIN pastas in the FREEZER section at your local


Find this recipe and others, including gluten-free and vegan versions, and learn more about our trip to Rome on our website at


780 391 2001


EDMONTON SHOCKWAVE THERAPY CENTRE Shockwave therapy is a highly effective, non-invasive treatment protocol used for the regeneration of tissues such as bone, tendon, muscle and skin. Shockwaves are mechanical sound waves that work by breaking down scar tissue-adhesions, increasing circulation, stimulating new blood vessel growth and driving stem cell migration to the area. Shockwaves are a scientifically proven treatment of acute and chronic pain, with virtually no side effects; most conditions are resolved after 3-5 sessions.

TREATABLE CONDITIONS Achilles Tendinopathy Acute & Chronic Neck & Back Pain Adhesions Bone Fractures & Spurs Bunions & Calluses Bursitis Chronic Headache Carpal Tunnel Syndrome Frozen/Stiff Shoulder Hallux Rigidus Hip Pain (Any joint pain) Iliotibial (IT) Band Syndrome

TREATABLE ASSOCIATED SYMPTOMS Jumper’s Knee Morton’s Neuroma Muscular & Cutaneous Scar Tissue Plantar Fasciitis Shin Splints Tendinitis & Calcification of Rotator Cuff Muscles Tennis & Golfer’s Elbow TMJ Dysfunction Trigger Points

Shockwaves are used with prevalence in orthopedics, cardiology, urology, dermatology, aesthetics and even veterinary medicine as an established regenerative therapy. Shockwaves travel deeper into tissue than any other modality and the properties of the wave allow for cellular change without any harm to healthy tissue. Short treatment sessions needing little to no down-time have been used as a first and last resort for healing in Europe for over three decades. As a result, shockwave therapy has greatly reduced the need for surgical intervention. By providing the optimal environment for healing, shockwave works well on its own and in conjunction with other therapies, enabling those treatments to yield more profound effects. Founded in 2012 by a European-trained

Special Treatments w/ ESWT: Burns Diabetes Wounds Erectile Dysfunction Non-Healing Ulcers Peyronie’s Disease Pre & Post Surgery Treatment (including Joint Replacement) Post C-Section Treatment Pelvic Health

physiotherapist, Remedial Wellness offers a unique rehabilitative experience that is unmatched nation-wide. Our 1-on-1 personalized shockwave protocol is the gold standard and driving force in Canadian medical shockwave treatments. We have also become the exclusive training source for other clinics and hospitals developing their shockwave practices. Over 90% of our new clients are referrals from former patients. Remedial Wellness has performed over 23,000 treatments in the last 5 years and has educated tens of thousands more in that time. We strive to make your recovery as low maintenance and time-effective as possible; offering claimable treatments 7 days per week at a reasonable cost. With 13 skilled practitioners drawing on over 150 years of combined experience, our sole priority is to improve your quality of life.

Arthritis Diabetes Fibromyalgia Herniated or slipped discs Migraines Multiple Sclerosis (MS) Renaud’s Disease (poor circulation in hands) Scoliosis (Congenital & Postural – often treated as a secondary condition) Spasticity (which is a symptom of many neurological conditions) Spondylolysis or spondylolysthesis

“Excellent. Totally resolved after 3 treatments.” - DR. JOE “I have had endless and increasing back pain/ spasms for my entire adult life. I have sought out every kind of therapist and doctor I could find for it and no one had been able to figure out why a guy in his late 20's had so many issues. Walked into Remedial because of a glowing review I had heard and they had me figured out in 5 mins. 1 appointment in and I already feel 10 times better. Simply amazing level of skill! Thank you!” - MARC










Advanced Rehabilitation and Pain Management Mary Stephens* was beyond frustrated with a bad case of sciatica. The worst part of it was not being able to sit in the car long enough to drive out to her son’s hockey games outside of the city. As a 51 year old health care professional, she felt there must be something more that could be done. She had tried physiotherapy and chiropractic already. They both provided temporary relief, and she was happy with these treatments, but still was not turning the corner the way she hoped. She was referred to Oliver MDR by her physiotherapist, which is when things really started to move forward. MDR Physiotherapist Jeff Begg took on Mary’s case. “Mary’s situation was very unfortunate. She had a particularly stubborn form of sciatica that appeared to be due to a large disc bulge in her low back. All her clinical tests pointed in that direction, yet when her MRI came back, the report showed no such thing.” Not taking the report at face value, Mr. Begg

used the close proximity of his radiology colleagues within the clinic to have the MRI films read again for a second opinion.

“Working inside a medical imaging facility gives us access to radiology specialists in a way that just doesn’t happen in the community” says Begg. That second opinion revealed the expected disc bulge and resulting nerve impingement. “Mary and I were both relived to know that what we strongly suspected was in fact there.” Mary was a candidate for a specific type of cortisone injection to help in her recovery. Through the radiology specialists at Insight Medical Imaging, she received this injection under x-ray guidance within a few days. Two weeks later, she was seen again through Oliver MDR. According to Mr. Begg “her condition was not fully resolved, nor did we expect it to be, but her pain had dropped 3 points on our 10 point scale.” That was significant enough for her to attend her son’s hockey games, which were heading into the all-important playoff season. Mary continued on with


her rehabilitation and was eventually able to get rid of her pain completely.


It’s just this combination of in-depth assessment, coordination of care with pain management specialists, and quick access to advanced diagnostics and treatment that sets Oliver MDR apart. Cory Choma partners with Mr. Begg in providing assessment and treatment at Oliver MDR. They are both certified by the Canadian Physiotherapy Association as Clinical Specialist Physiotherapists. There are only an handful of certified specialists amongst the 400+ private practice physiotherapists in the Edmonton region, making MDR a unique clinic with advanced care options. In this new endeavour, Begg and Choma have developed a relationship with Insight Medical Imaging, and collaborate with Insight’s pain management physician specialists. “Working closely with physiotherapy through MDR helps us target our therapies more accurately. This saves the patient time, and improves our outcomes quite a bit,” says Dr. Konstantin Pappas, an Insight Radiologist who subspecializes in imaging guided pain management procedures. Patients seen at Oliver MDR receive a thorough assessment of their condition by either Mr. Begg or Mr. Choma. They will consider any advanced imaging techniques that may help with the diagnosis, including x-ray, ultrasound, MRI, and diagnostic injections as needed. Once the diagnosis becomes clear, treatment begins, and this is where the combined 40 years of clinical experience between the pair really makes a difference. “With tricky and persistent pain, it can be frustrating for patients to find the right treatment. They often spend a lot of time and money before they find the right approach,” says Choma. “Our experience helps us get patients on the right track quickly.” This often includes a combination of hands-on manipulative-style physiotherapy or deep needling (also known as intramuscular stimulation). Nearly every patient will need to learn the appropriate set of exercises to complement their recovery. This is done individually with each patient, with a written or email-linked exercise program to follow outside the clinic. “Exercise prescription is really specific,” says Begg. “A handful of people with the same diagnosis often will all have a different set of exercises based on body type, baseline fitness level and general level of coordination. There is no such thing as a standard handout of the same exercises for everyone.” For really persistent cases, the radiologists from Insight are brought in to offer image-guided injections that speed up diagnosis and help direct care with precision in a timely manner. It’s no surprise that Oliver MDR is located downtown between the Ice and Brewery Districts. “There are lots of up and coming businesses and innovative offerings in the neighbourhood. It’s an exciting time to be in downtown Edmonton” says Choma. Oliver MDR is shaping up to be yet another exciting addition to the region. *name changed to protect confidentiality

11560 104 Ave P: 780-436-6010


Located within Insight Medical Imaging YEGFITNESS



Optimize Physiotherapy & Sports Injury Clinic Optimize Physiotherapy & Sports Injury Clinic offers a variety of services to serve your rehabilitation needs. As our name suggests, we have a focus in treating athletic injuries, however we also work with many WCB injuries, motor vehicle accident claims, and any other form of musculoskeletal pain. Our therapists all have extensive athletic backgrounds in a variety of sports such as hockey, soccer, basketball, baseball, volleyball, golf, lacrosse, rowing, running, CrossFit, and Olympic weightlifting, as both participants and clinicians. Athletes treating athletes! You can meet our therapists by checking out their profiles on our website! In addition to physiotherapy and massage therapy, we also offer nutrition services from our registered dietitian! She has a special interest in working with an athletic population. She has helped people of all fitness levels, with varying dietary issues (ex. celiac disease, diabetics, lactose sensitivities, etc.) fine tune their nutrition and make the necessary adjustments to their

diet. For more information on our nutrition packages check out the link on our website! As a bonus, Optimize Physiotherapy & Sports Injury Clinic is directly connected to CrossFit Armoury. This relationship literally opens another door in the rehabilitation world. We have access to 7000 square feet of gym space, with Olympic lifting bars, platforms, dumbbells, plyo boxes, pull up stations, climbing ropes, weighted sleds, gymnastic rings, and kettlebells, just to name a few! We are not your typical physiotherapy clinic. We encourage customized treatments and functional movements. Our therapists challenge our clients so that they walk out of our doors a stronger, faster athlete with all the tools they need to succeed. With our knowledge, experience, and expertise, the team at Optimize Physiotherapy & Sports Injury Clinic is here to help you optimize your body and optimize your life! >> 780-455-5068 >> 17317 105 Ave mobilize • stabilize • optimize


Propel Sports Physical Therapy D E D IC A T E D T O T H E A R T A N D S C IE N C E O F MO V E ME N T The energy and passion for continual progress for all clients and team members is palpable when you walk in the doors. Innovative and integrative, PROPEL Sports Physical Therapy strives in every way to making you the best version of yourself. Propel sports physical therapy is far from “your ordinary physio clinic”. The staff at Propel have one goal: to optimize your body and movement along the spectrum of athletic performance. From injury rehabilitation, to functional movement, to fitness, and finally peak performance, Propel will be there to help get you to your best. They truly understand the importance of optimal movement and its effect on how you feel daily as well as how you perform, and constantly strive to lead the field in functional movement systems and performance enhancement. The team at Propel is dedicated to learning all the time, and working with you and your team of trainers and coaches, to develop individualized programs consisting of movement evaluation, treatment techniques, corrective exercises, and performance specific exercises. Everyone at Propel understands being active, fit and performing your best requires dedication and commitment, and they strive to meet you with that same level of dedication and commitment. Using a team approach within the clinics, and working alongside with your trainers and coaches, is of the utmost importance at Propel in order to ensure maximum progress. With a wide range of experience and training, the rehab team; consisting of physical therapists and kinesiologists, employ a variety of techniques in their approach to helping you. They include: GunnIMS, acupuncture, functional dry needling, spinal manipulation, Rockblade and Rocktape techniques, manual therapy, progressive exercise techniques, Titliest Performance Institute golf assessment and 3D swing analysis, pregnancy related pain and discomfort techniques, as well as Selective Functional Movement Assessment certifications. Alongside the physical therapists and kinesiologists, there is an extensive massage therapy team trained in different techniques such as cupping, fascial stripping and release, hot stone massage and mobility technique training. To fully meet the needs of clients, Propel also has a traditionally trained acupuncturist specializing in women's health issues as well as a women's health physical therapist specializing in pre and post-natal pelvic floor care. The whole treatment team is passionate about functional movement and performance and work together to continually teach each other as well as educate clients to integrate all concepts in a program. Most importantly, the first line of help comes from an enthusiastic front end team at both locations. Friendly, energetic and just as passionate about making their clients the best they can be, the front end staff is well educated on all services and will efficiently direct your care. Clearly dedicated to progress and passionate about helping you find ways to achieve unparalleled success, Propel Sports physical Therapy is a must visit for any athlete or fitness enthusiast.

For more information check out Propel Sports Physical Therapy – Heritage Valley 201 856 119 Street SW (780) 989-8809 PROPEL SPORTS PHYSICAL THERAPY – Whitemud 4242-99 Street (780) 989-8802

Try our favourite vegan smoothie to hit GO on your day!


Ingredients: 1 cup Almond or Cashew Beverage 1 cup coconut yogurt 1 handful fresh spinach 1 cup frozen or fresh pineapple, mango, and banana mix 2 TBSP. hemp hearts ADD berries for garnish (optional) Directions: 1. In a blender add all the ingredients except the berries. 2. Blend on high. 3. Poor into a glass or to-go-container. 4. Garnish with berries. 5. Hit GO on your day!

IG ANT! Did you know? Spinach is native to Iran. It was first brought to China in the 7th century, Europe in the 1200’s and North America

Frozen Tropical Blend $24.99/1.5kg

Baby Spinach $5.99/5oz

Almond Beverage 3.69/946 ml

in 1806! Reflecting its origin, spinach is still widely known in China as “the Persian Green.”

All grocery items available for home delivery from

SAVE $10!

Use code YEGFIT10 at to receive $10 off $40* on your first order of local, organic groceries & produce delivered right to your door. Free delivery, no contracts.

*must live within delivery area, not to be combined with any other offers. New customers only. Expires December 31/2017

Bliss YogaSpa


Bliss YogaSpa offers the best spa experience in Edmonton, as voted by the readers of the Edmonton Journal, Vue Weekly and Top Choice Awards.  Our eight Registered Massage Therapists have a combined experience of over 50 years. Our multi-disciplined team allows you to book a treatment that can include a wealth of services including Cupping, Reflexology, Prenatal, Hot Stone, Couples, Thai and Reiki. Each massage is customized for your personal experience from relaxation to deep tissue therapeutic.     Bliss YogaSpa’s mission is to provide the best spa and yoga experience by offering the highest-quality products and services from a remarkably attentive staff. We will support the health and wellness of our clientele and our team members in an environment that encompasses well-being, responsiveness, and respect.   Through our premier facility, we will transport you to a place that hasn’t existed in Edmonton—one that provides a unique sense of peace, harmony, and well-being. This well-appointed 8,000-square-foot facility is designed to flow from our two hot yoga studios to our eight treatment rooms, which include a couple’s massage room and two laser rooms. Our signature heated Caldarium is where you can enjoy relaxing under the stars to the soothing sounds of a waterfall. Our private steam showers are the perfect way to finish your blissful treatment.   We are proud to offer you the therapy you need in our luxurious environment, open seven days a week. Our facility features treatment rooms equipped with heated and adjustable beds, body contouring bolsters and hot towel service during your treatment. You are offered your choice of six pure essential oil service enhancements before our Registered Massage Therapists perform a treatment designed specifically to your needs. The self-care and luxury continues as you receive a bag of epsom salts to take home.    Treat yourself to a blissful experience.  780.432.1535  5954 Mullen Way • Edmonton, AB • T6R 0S9

AUGUST 5, 2017 Registration Open NOW!

THE CANADIAN DEATH RACE The 125 km course begins and ends on a 4200 foot plateau, passes over 3 mountain summits, includes 17,000 feet of elevation change, and a river crossing at Hell's Gate canyon. Extreme athletes can take on this race as soloists, in teams of up to five, or can enter our new marathon category. Push yourself to the limit against the backdrop of the Canadian Rockies. Finishing is the prize. And the bragging rights are priceless... YEGFITNESS





KNEEFIT therapist, Soccer, Baseball

RUNFIT therapist, Hockey, Football, Concussion



KNEEFIT therapist, Soccer, Basketball

Concussion, Hockey, Ringette



Acupuncture, Dry Needling, Vertigo, GOLFFIT therapist

Olympic Weightlifting



Acupuncture, Dry Needling, PILATES Certified, Basketball, Crossfit

Acupuncture, Dry Needling, Golf



Concussion, Dry Needling, Weightlifting

Basketball, Squash, Weightlifting






Athletic Therapist

Athletic Therapist




At Sherwood Park Sports Physiotherapy, we believe in Team Work so we've gathered the best team of health and exercise professionals to work together with you on achieving your goals. Whether you're recovering from injury, returning to activity or want to improve performance let our team create a plan just for you.



Volleyball, Basketball

Running, Track Sports



Athlete Training, Return to Sport Training

Concussion, Outdoor Activities



RUNFIT therapist, Seniors Exercise Training

Golf, Basketball



Lacrosse, Rugby, Hockey, Ringette

Recreational Sports



Return to Sport Training, Soccer, Hockey

Acupuncture, Dry Needling, Gait Analysis


Exercise Therapist

Exercise Therapist

Exercise Therapist





Massage Therapist


We are here to help, book with one of our therapists today!


SEASON PASS NEW this summer, get unlimited access to outdoor pools for one great price. Child






Available for a limited time. Pick up a season pass today at any City of Edmonton recreation centre, or outdoor pool.






SOAK UP THE SUMMER AT AN OUTDOOR POOL Warm weather is officially here and it’s time to get out into the summer breeze. Edmonton is alive with outdoor recreation opportunities to keep you and your families active, offering everything from parks and trails to sports fields and even four amazing outdoor pools. Each City of Edmonton outdoor pool offers a unique experience depending on your interests. Here are a few ideas to kick your next visit to an outdoor pool up a notch.

QUEEN ELIZABETH 9100 Walterdale Hill

OLIVER 10315 119 Street

Take your swimming gear to Queen Elizabeth Outdoor Pool this summer and enjoy some sun while you get your laps in. Located next to Kinsmen Sports Centre in the heart of Edmonton’s River Valley, you can try some amazing trails when you’re done, or get a game in on the sports fields.

As the only City of Edmonton Outdoor Pool equipped with giant aquatic inflatables all summer long, Oliver Outdoor Pool is already bouncing with fun this summer. This amazing pool is conveniently located downtown and offers a sundeck, waterslide, picnic tables, and tantalizing concession.

Queen Elizabeth’s the only outdoor pool in Edmonton that features guaranteed hours, so you can be sure it’s always available to you. The pool also features a six lane, 25-metre pool with a zero depth entry, diving boards, spray and sun decks as well as a well-stocked concession.

Whether you decide to spend the whole day here or just come for a couple hours this pool will keep all ages entertained for the duration of your stay. Bring your swim wear and go see what The City of Edmonton has to offer; we don’t think you will be disappointed!

FRED BROADSTOCK 15720 105 Avenue

MILL CREEK 9555 84 Avenue

This family-friendly pool with all new amenities is a great option for you and your friends and family this summer. Kids can play in the spray park or learn to swim in the teach pool while parents can take their laps into the sun. Stay for lunch as well. With a big sun deck and plenty of picnic tables there’s space for everyone.

Every summer this bustling outdoor pool is named an Edmonton favourite. Surrounded by beautiful parkland trails it’s easy to see why. Whether you decide to go for a hike and then cool off poolside, or you want to set up camp on the sundeck for a day with friends, this pool creates and environment that everyone is sure to love.

Fred Broadstock outdoor pool is the perfect place to cool off this summer. Open from 11am to 7pm daily, you’ll be able to head down whether it’s after work, or right before lunch.

Located right off Whyte Avenue, this outdoor pool is easy to find and is a popular destination for people coming to visit the city. With all the amenities you could ever ask for, Mill Creek pool will be sure to help take your next outdoor adventure to the next level. YEGFITNESS



Spring Running Apparel. Layering For the Weather.

Spring is a great time to get back into your running training. Find out what to wear with our guide to spring running clothes. A flexible outfit for all weather conditions. It’s important to plan your outfit for all eventualities so no matter what the weather does, you’re always comfortable and can focus on your performance. And that’s where layering comes in. When it comes to tops, layering is based on three main elements: 1. Base layer: The bottom layer, which sits tighter to the body 2. Mid layer: Provides extra warmth on top of the base layer 3. Outer or shell: This protects you from the wind and the rain In the Spring,  you’ll probably only want to wear two layers.  The full three is usually best reserved for the winter months. L A Y E R I N G UP O N F R O S T Y MO R N IN G S Heading out for a long run on a cold morning poses two main problems: BRENDAN - TOP: METAL VENT TECH LONG SLEEVE IN BLACK/WHITE BOTTOM: SURGE JOGGER IN BLACK HAT: ULTRA LIGHTSPEED RUN HAT IN BLACK ROBIN - TOP: SWIFTLY TECH LONG SLEEVE BREEZE IN SLATE/WHITE BOTTOM: FAST AND FREE CROP IN NULUX NA KED SENSATION FABRIC IN MIDNINGHT NAVY

1. Cold starts: In cooler weather your muscles don’t contract with the same intensity  as when it’s warm. You also burn more carbohydrates in the cold and become less efficient at using oxygen so you can tire quicker too. 2. Warming up: As the sun comes out and you warm up, you run the risk of overheating. As you overheat, blood rushes to the skin to release sweat, meaning  less blood is being pumped into your muscles. This can cause tiredness and, depending on how hot you get, dehydration too. So start off warm with a base and a mid layer and as you get into your run, take a layer off to regulate your body temperature. Your base layer should therefore be a breathable fabric, with plenty of ventilation so you can avoid overheating once the weather warms up. How ever you dress building some flexibility into your outfit is key. If it’s cold, you can start out with a running tube as a scarf. It’s versatile so as you warm it can be converted into a headband or packed away if you no longer need it.


all product is available at all lululemon Edmonton stores (whyte avenue, Kingsway mall, West Edmonton Mall, Southgate mall or






RU NNIN G IN T HE WIND When you’re running in windy conditions, the increased air resistance means you need to work harder to maintain your pace. And that can mean you sweat more. But if it’s windy, this will also make you feel colder as the wind hits the moisture on your skin. So your base layer needs to be quick drying to remove sweat from the skin while your outer or shell needs to keep the elements at bay. So ideally your mid or base layer should be a quick drying material while your outer layer or shell should be a protective material. There’s your head to think about too. It’s one of the most exposed parts of the body, so if you’re sweating in the wind you could find it getting cold very quickly. Keep the heat in with a running cap, or if it’s really cold, you could wear a running beanie and pack it away once you warm up. PRO TECTIN G Y OURSE L F F R OM T HE R A I N Just like with sweat, the rain can cool you down quickly, not to mention cause some discomfort with more chafing when running in wet clothes. So if rain is in the forecast, your outer layer should be made of a water resistant material. Unlike everyday raincoats, athletic apparel designed for running provides ventilation as well as sweat wicking capabilities that will prevent you from overheating.


June 11, 2017 • 10 AM Argyll Park 3 KM Walk • 5 KM Run • 10 KM Run More information and registration:




A Fruitful Endeavour BY JIM HOLE

Without doubt, the tomato is the most popular garden vegetable in the land. Nothing instills a greater sense of pride in the tomato grower than a healthy plant laden with dozens of juicy, succulent fruit. But before you can realize that vision, you have to make sure that your tomato plants produce flowers, and that those flowers stay healthy enough to produce fruit. WHEN FLOWERS FAIL Tomatoes can be reluctant, at times, to flower, and even when flowers do appear, they don't always lead to fruit. Two factors are most responsible for this phenomenon: too little light, or too much rich compost.

JIM’S FAVOURITE TOMATO VARIETIES LARGE SLICING HEIRLOOM TYPES Black Krim • Deep red to dark mahogany • Large fruit • Delicious meaty flesh Cherokee Purple • Purple-pink to brown-green interior • Very large, delicious fruit • One of the oldest varieties Mortgage Lifter • Red, meaty fruit • One of the finest for fresh eating • Juicy and meaty CHERRY TYPES Sungold • Sweet and delicious • Very heavy yielder • Needs lots of space Sweet 100 • Long ‘strings’ of tomatoes • Very sweet • Easy to grow Tumbler • Compact tomato • Great for hanging baskets • High yielder

Producing fruit is one of the most energy-draining jobs a plant performs. Tomatoes planted in a spot with very little exposure to direct sunlight simply have too little energy to accomplish the task. Rather than risk its health by setting flowers and fruit, a tomato plant will just continue to produce leaves, waiting for the light levels to increase. As a rule, six hours or more of direct afternoon sunlight is best for flower production-and therefore fruit yield. Over-application of rich compost is another leading cause of flower-less tomato plants. Although composts are excellent soil conditioners, many contain excessively high levels of nitrogen. Too much nitrogen leads to abundant leafy growth, but at the expense of flowers. Compost can be used on tomatoes, but sparingly, and avoid applying large amounts of newly-composted material; new compost is often loaded with nitrogen, which leads to beautiful, leafy, but fruitless plants. AFTER BLOOMSDAY Once the flowers form, there are still a couple of bridges to cross. Cold nighttime temperatures can lead to "flower drop," a condition where flowers form on the plant, only to abort prior to pollination. Locating tomatoes in a sunny but sheltered spot near the house or garage can temper the effects of cool nights, reducing flower drop significantly. However, high temperatures can be just as injurious to flowers as low temperatures. Tomatoes grown during the summer

in poorly ventilated cold frames or greenhouses become excessively hot, damaging the flowers. Temperatures should never be allowed to climb above 30° C for extended periods. Hot summer days are not a problem for tomatoes growing outdoors, since temperatures peak for only a short time. But in a cold frame, temperatures can easily climb to the 40s or 50s, and stay there for hours. POLLINATION Tomato flowers are almost entirely self-pollinated; wind simply shakes the pollen onto the stigma within the flower. This vibration of flowers is critical for proper fruit growth. If you plan to grow tomatoes in a greenhouse, where air movement may be restricted, the tomato flower clusters should be manually vibrated to ensure proper fruit set. An old electric toothbrush suits the purpose perfectly. Fortunately for tomato lovers, flowers manage to set fruit more often than not. However, some evidence of poor pollination, whether due to a lack of wind or damage to flowers from high heat, can be observed after the fruit has formed. Rough fruit with deep creases is often the first indication of poor conditions at pollination time. Puffy fruit, fruit with air pockets where the jelly-like substance is supposed to be, also indicates that something went wrong during pollination. There are fruit set sprays on the market to encourage fruiting under adverse weather conditions. These should only be used as a last resort, because the fruit quality is inferior to fruit developed from natural pollination. A FRUITFUL ENDEAVOR Provided tomatoes get plenty of sun, are grown in a high-quality potting soil or good garden soil with just a bit of compost, and enjoy relatively stable, warm temperatures, you should enjoy an excellent crop of sweet fruit. Just paying a little extra attention to these simple matters will give you a much better chance of enjoying the fruits of your labours.







l Go

At Optimize Physiotherapy & Sports Injury Clinic, we are here to help get your body ready for a round of golf. Whether you are crushing the big stick at the driving range, chipping onto the green to give you a chance at a birdie, or stepping up to take your 5th putt on the first hole – we will help you improve your swing and ensure you have the tools necessary to get your golf game in check! The golf swing requires the body to produce a tremendous amount of rotational force. We need adequate mobility through the thoracic spine (upper back), the shoulders, and the hips in order for this to occur properly. If one or more of these body parts is hypomobile or restricted, then the range of motion of the golf swing will be limited. This will lead to the development of some compensation patterns in other areas of the body. For example, if you are experiencing stiffness through the thoracic spine and rib cage, you are going to lose a great deal of range of motion in the back swing, and thus limit the power of your swing. This same response could occur in the follow through, if you lack internal or external rotation in the hips. This restriction will cause you to strike the ball in an unstable position which will likely lead to your ball landing deep in the rough. To keep your ball in the fairway, and ensure that you have harnessed all the possible power in your swing, we suggest you implement the following exercises into your warmup routine.




S wi ng !

Upper Back Rotation – in a kneeling position,

Upper Back Rotation – in a kneeling position,

Hip Rotation – sit with the hips rotated as

Kneeling Trunk Rotation – in a half kneeling

place the hand behind the head and bring the elbow towards the ceiling by twisting the torso.

place one hand on the ground, bring the other arm in from behind it and push the arm across the body with the help of a foam roller.



shown, twist your torso side to side.

position, hold the arms overhead with a golf club for alignment, twist the torso side to side.


mobilize stabilize optimize >> 780-455-5068 >> 17317 105 Ave


Spring is in the air isn’t it? That sweet, sweet time when days are longer, there’s heat in the sun and you can kick your kids back outside to play after dinner. The oh-so-joyful moments when you can say, “Get outside and run around!” Without taking 45 minutes and three bathroom trips for a 10-minute blast of fresh air. I love spring. The beautiful flowers beginning to bloom, the bright sky the lack of snow. I also love that being able to get outside gives parents an opportunity to get active in more ways that just pushups and burpees in the living room! Taking your kids to the park can be one of the greatest sweat sessions you can have. The best part? Your kids are getting active play and will often join you in your exercises. There’s nothing better than listening to your kids laugh, run and play while you laugh, burpee and strengthen your core.


Most parks that you take your kiddos to will have a bench for parents to sit on. Don’t just sit there. Get your triceps dips in. Be sure to drop your hips straight down and go down until your elbows reach 90 degrees. To make this exercise harder, move your feet away from your body. Need it easier? Bring your feet closer to the bench.

While you may think that going to park gives you some time to sit, rest and relax, it can also be a time for you to be active, get stronger and be an incredible role model for your kids. Not sure what to do at the park to get active? Have no fear. I’ve put together seven exercises you can link together to create a fun-filled workout that allows you to keep your eyes on your kids and work on your own health and fitness.


Complete each exercise for one minute then move on to the next. You can repeat all seven exercises two to four times. Depending on how long you want to workout and/or how long your kids want to play. EXERC I S E # 1: S H U F F LE S AN D SPRI N T S

Most parks are designed in a square shape. Shuffle along the widths of the park and sprint each length. Shuffle, sprint, shuffle sprint, repeat. This will give you a delicious cardio blast and raise your heart rate for an increased caloric burn.


EXERC I S E # 2: S T E P - U P S

Swings aren’t just for swinging any longer. Think of them as little TRX suspension systems! Hold the swing by the chains or ropes. in front of you with your arms bent. Slowly straighten your arms, allowing your body to move in a solid plank towards the ground. Keeping that angled plank position, pull your body up with your arms. Your elbows should be close your side. Then lengthen the arms and slowly lower the body down again. Continue on rowing for the entire minute.

The wonderful thing about parks is that there are always places for you to step up. Plant your entire foot onto a bench or part of the play structure then simply step up driving your weight through your heel. Step back down, alternating which foot you step up with. PHOTOS BY CHAN RIN // VIVID RIBBON PHOTOGRAPHY





There are often a number of places at a park with unstable surfaces. The little ride-em animals or even swings can be used for this exercise. Simply put your feet on the unstable surface and complete your pushups from there. Working with unstable surfaces increases the amount of work your core needs to do! If you find pushups difficult, modify! Don’t use an unstable platform and drop to your knees.

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With your feet on the swing and your body held in a plank position, keep your legs straight and pike your body by shooting your booty to the sky. Then bring your hips back down so your body is back to the starting position. Remember to brace through your core, breathe and only do this exercise while you can maintain proper form. If the form falters, rest and start again. EXERC I S E # 7: OB S T A C LE CO URSE

This one is my favorite. Have your kids set up an obstacle course around the park for you. They’ll have your running up, under and over the park equipment. Including your kids adds to the fun and they’ll often join you on this part of your workout. It’s okay to slow down and just be with them for this, it’s all about the fun! So, there you have it, seven exercises you can put together for a killer park workout. As you kick your kids out to play, tie up your laces, grab your water bottle and hit the fresh air with them. You’ll both leave the park feeling refreshed, fit and ready to tackle the rest of your day.










The Tour de l’Alberta began in 1994 by the Edmonton Bicycle & Touring Club as a club ride for members to celebrate the Tour de France in our French communities, and to promote recreational cycling by participants of all ages and abilities. On its inaugural ride, the club saw just over 20 cyclists ride 100 miles. Since that day the ride has grown to its current state of over 1,300 cyclists with four different ride options, Family Ride, 50 km, 100 km, and 160 km.   The Tour de l’Alberta is one of the largest one day cycling rides in Western Canada and is a staple on the local sporting event calendar. The Tour has introduced new riders to the sport as well as returning participants from previous years.

The Tour de l’Alberta with Revolution Cycle

Revolution Cycle has partnered with Edmonton Bicycle and Touring Club (EBTC )to celebrate the long standing heritage of Alberta’s biggest one day cycling tour that showcases our French communities and the end of the Tour de France. The most popular rides are the longer distances of 100 km and 160 km, and we emphasize participation and recreation over competition. A service that they would recommend to everyone that would enter the race is what we call a Body Geometry Fit. The BG Fit is a four-hour long body mapping and fitting of a person to their bike. It is the best way possible to be the most comfortable on your bike for long distance rides. Revolution Cycle has more great events throughout the summer season for Edmontonians to enjoy, such as: • • • •

FISE Edmonton River Valley Triathlon and Demo Days Kids of Steel Triathlon E-valley Tours

Or, join Revolution Cycle on Sunday afternoons at local farmers markets this summer to test out their eBikes and for more information on their newest company, eValley Tours. For event schedules, please visit or follow them on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram.

We can help you tell your story. ADVERTISE WITH US Contact for more information.






he fitness industry, and sports in general, has always been very gendered and binary in its approach. A person is either categorized as male or female, and from there are assessed based on the physiological performances usually recorded for those two groups of people. While this approach is relatively accurate for the general population, it is very distressing and alienating for the percentage of the population that identifies outside of these two genders. We have the chance to live during a time where transgender and non-binary identities are being talked about more openly and respectfully, and are finally being taken into consideration by our society. From bathrooms to change rooms, and the very language we use, we have started challenging the way we view gender, and how it is applied within our society. Therefore, the natural progression of this discourse is to challenge the gender dichotomy of fitness, and to look at ways to approach it in a more inclusive way. To start out, it is important to make a distinction between sex and gender, and how it affects fitness. Sex is the biological makeup of a person, and can be determined by chromosomes (XX, XY, XXY, etc.), reproductive organs, and secondary sex characteristics. There are three sexes; man, woman, and intersex. Gender, on the other hand, is the social and cultural representation of sex, and can vary from culture to culture. Gender is a spectrum, with male on one end and female on the other and different degrees between. This is an important distinction to make because sex and gender are often confused with one another, and the roles imposed on each gender directly influences our perception of sex itself, and therefore physical performance. Transgender people usually feel like they were born in the body of the wrong sex, and gender-non-conforming people (or gender-queer, 34



gender-neutral, etc.) may feel like both male and female, neither, or anything in between. This challenges the very foundation of fitness and fitness training because it brings into question some of our pre-existing biases about the sexes and performance. Sex-based segregation is not new to sports and fitness. It has been a long-time feature in organized sports. Historically, when women were allowed to participate, rules were put in place in order to keep the sexes segregated, which reinforced a flawed binary based on generalities rather than on individual skills and strengths. Fitness has been based on a concept of ‘male athletic superiority,’ and this sustains a hierarchy that privileges boys and men by categorizing their performance as superior. It has been argued, therefore, that segregation is required to ensure women have a ‘fair’ playing field. This hierarchical view may lead to less opportunities and desire to participate due to women’s performance being undervalued. If girls are brought up thinking they are weaker and less athletic than their male counterparts, they may not put effort into fitness, nor want to participate in sports. If they do participate, they might not be treated as equals by the boys, which will impact performance due to lack of practice. Add the socialization of boys to think that losing to a girl in an athletic context is shameful because of girls’ perceived athletic inferiority, and you have a self-fulfilling prophecy. These considerations are important to understand because sex-based segregation makes it difficult for transgender and gender non-conforming people to feel accepted and validated in fitness and sports, because they don’t fall into the category of ‘male’ or ‘female’. This brings us to trans and gender non-conforming specific training, which are an under-researched and little recog-

nized area of fitness. Amongst the various determinants of physical performance, testosterone is one of the most important when it comes to physiology. Therefore, we can apply this knowledge when we train people without making it about sex. We can apply this knowledge to categorize two different groups of trans and gender non-conforming people for fitness training purposes: 1. Those with a natural hormonal balance; and, 2. Those with hormone treatment or who have fully transitioned. This creates the potential of using fitness as a way to strengthen the identity and the confidence of the client, while also creating an inclusive and individual-based method of viewing fitness and performance for everyone. 1) Trans and gender non-conforming people with a natural hormonal balance: Since the hormonal balance in this group of people most likely will be different than the hormonal balance in their desired sex, it is important to take extra consideration when training them. Testosterone will produce faster and more efficient muscle growth, and this might not match the goal of the client despite having a physiological predisposition for it, or vice-versa. For example, I have heard from certain male-to-female transgender people that they disliked pectoral exercises as it made the chest look too masculine. On the opposite end of the spectrum, female-to-male transgender people might want to focus on the pectorals in order to build muscle mass and reduce the size of the breasts, therefore achieving a more masculine look. It is important to work on an individual level to define what their definition of femininity and masculinity is. 2) Trans and gender non-conforming people with hormone treatment or that have fully transitioned: For this group of people, the focus should be on making sure that the client gets used to training with their new hormonal balance. This might seem strange, but there’s a learning curve when the body’s physiology has changed, especially when a client’s goal is fitness related. An example of this would be a maleto-female transgender person having a higher chance of knee/ankle injury stemming from loss of muscle mass in those areas, in addition to the fact that they might not be aware that they have to strengthen that area because they never had to with their previous physiology. Through all of this, I think it’s important to remember exactly what transgender and gender non-binary identities challenge: that sex is not everything physiologically and gender-wise. One transgender woman named Janae Kroczaleski was a world champion powerlifter before her transition to a woman from a man. Many would assume that to become a world class powerlifter, you would probably need a higher level of testosterone than average. For Janae, this was not the case at all. In fact, her level of testosterone was considered ‘low’ by male standards, and her estrogen level was high. She is one of the many examples we have that can change our view of sex, gender, and performance, from one that generalizes based on sex to one that focuses on the individual. This would not only benefit transgender and gender non-conforming people, but also the general population by deconstructing sex-based generalizations that male performance and athletic capabilities are superior. We know better than that now. Émilie/Emmett Lamache is a NAIT Personal Fitness Trainer student who identifies as gender-queer. She wants to focus on training the LGBTQA+ community upon graduation, with a specific focus on transgender and gender non-conforming people. The goal is to create an inclusive environment for everyone regardless of sex, gender, or sexual orientation, while providing the best holistic fitness services based on individual needs. YEGFITNESS







really see me for who I was. As they say, misery enjoys company and when you are down, you want those around you to feel the same way.  However, the trip that was the crowning moment in my life as a young gay man was to “Adonis Tulum Gay Resort & Spa” in Mexico. There I was, 19-years-old living in a sexually heightened world and gay community, giggling to myself with excitement that I was travelling on my own to a resort that had a nude beach and was strictly for gay men. I had deluded myself into thinking that would be where I would meet my husband—or a hot cabana boy – which at the time was likely the same thing in my head. Much to my dismay, the trip proved to be me by the pool, having made friends with the one straight female who was there on her honeymoon as they got a deal on the resort. Befriending females everywhere I went was not uncommon. Women have always played an important role in my life. They always seemed to get me and during a time where lacking masculinity ostracized me, they seemed like my only safe haven. 

“We all attempt to satisfy the need to fit in; this unexplainable requirement to be accepted, to have a group, a place to call home. I was born and raised in Edmonton with a constant feeling that something was missing in this city for me. I never really fit into a group. I couldn't find a place where I could be myself. It all made for a challenging journey,” says Kodershash. When the opportunity for a trip to visit a cousin one year in Montreal arose, I jumped at the chance. The moment my feet touched the ground, I instantly fell in love with Montreal. It’s culture and the big city vibes. I would walk around in awe, jealous of these people walking the streets of downtown with a mission. Important people doing important things. I instantly felt I needed to be one of them. The city gave me the feeling that I could be as seen as I wanted to, or fade to the background when need be. A task that seemed near impossible in Edmonton. Coming home from those trips always made me sad, like being back in the city was looming over my head. I always felt like I was not enough growing up. I would be in constant search of tangible things that would give me the feeling of being enough. I would tell myself that I was not good at anything and  unable to attain anything. To fill those voids, I would just need to run. Running became an easy to solution to all my problems. I lacked courage to be me, courage to stand in my own light and be my own hero. It’s true what they say, your perception soon becomes your reality, and my reality sunk in all too hard at a very tender age.  Through what seemed like my never ending years as an adolescent, I was lucky enough to have parents that had a travel bug and I was able to make my way across the globe. Notably, a trip back to Lebanon to see the homes my parents grew up in and a few trips to some sunnier destinations across Canada and the United States. Although I appreciated the opportunities, I never felt I belonged on those trips. It wasn't anyone's fault, I just always felt like an outsider with the people in my life. I felt like there was something missing in our connection and interactions. Not knowing how to fix it led me right back to what I knew best - run and hide. I would work on ways at separating myself from the group I was with because I found myself constantly fighting with everyone. I felt no one had made an effort to know me, to

chool never came easy to me, both in the social aspects of it as well as the educational side. Math was literally my worst nightmare. My brain never worked like that. The teachers would be talking about long division, but my mind was far more concerned with the fact that the Pussycat Dolls were on the verge of a break up or that my dance group was in the midst of learning a new routine to “I want Candy” by Aaron Carter. Where I would be featured as the male lead, making my grand jete across the main stage. The arts were always safe and they always made sense. See, with music playing and your body moving to its beat, you can become whoever it is you need to be. Little did I know, the only person I needed to be was myself. 

I am the youngest of two children, raised with the hopes of instilling very conservative Lebanese values. My parents did their best to guide me through the trials and tribulations of life. However, “One girl, Five gays” had a very different plan in mind for me. I was constantly curious, always hungry for more, never knowing what exactly I was hungry for. This constant craving got me into a lot of trouble. But it also equipped me with a quick tongue and not knowing when to be quiet. It also gifted me the notion that every single person I encountered had a story to tell me and I was determined to listen to it all. It allowed my heart to be open to everyone and to love so fiercely it would hurt. My family tried their best but I felt like I was an anomaly to most of them. None of them have ever experienced anything like me before it was a process of trial error on both our parts. I danced for a large part of my childhood and adolescent life, between the ages eight to 16 , I would find peace in each movement. I loved music and pairing that with the active portion of my lifestyle made it easy. However, I hated organized sports. Back then I would make some joke that I didn’t understand it and that I though it wasn’t worth my time. The reality was I was always terrified I would look stupid. I was a kid that was crippled with a fear of rejection from anyone. If it didn’t think that I could do it, I wouldn't even attempt it. That made for no false hopes, no broken dreams, and no pointing and laughing. Looking back now, I realized I missed a lot of great opportunities with that destructive thinking. As a result, I stuck to what I knew which was dance and when that wasn't an option for me anymore pop culture, television shows and movies alone in bed accompanied by snacks became my sanctuary. The concept of a healthy lifestyle and staying active was lost on me at an early age, contrary to the efforts of the people in my life. I didn’t see the worth in taking care of myself. Likely because I forgot that I deserved my own love more than anybody else. There was never any doubt in my mind about my sexuality, the reality was that I never realized that it mattered at all. In my head, the people I was attracted to were always secondary to everything else I could offer. It became very clear to me at a young age that who I was, was not the teenage boy that society was expecting me to be. As most teens who come out of the closet can attest, your journey out of the closet never stops. It becomes a delicate act that you have to repeat over and over again even though you may not be getting the standing ovation you are looking for. I was riddled with worry and shame when I reached the age that my attraction to men made more sense, when sex and sexuality all become a little clearer. I remember the day as if it was yesterday. I was fourteen-years-old and my mother was driving me home from school. We were just about to turn into the driveway and she asked, “Oliver are you gay?” I had been asked this before. Multiple times. By kids at school, parents, aunts, uncles, really anybody. Even peo-

ple who might not have meant it maliciously would ask, because humans seemed to have this weird need to “get you”. Like they need to know what box to put you in so that you can make more sense. I used to shrug the question off, trying to disguise it with a funny remark or a change of topic. This time however, I swallowed the lump in my throat and managed to work out a squeak of a “yes” met with utter silence. I was terrified but so relived, that was a step in the right direction. It felt, like I was on my way towards a better tomorrow. While that tomorrow took eight years for me to get to, I can safely say now, that was the best decision I had ever made. chool, friends and acceptance is hard for any teenager to begin with. Throw in banging on a closet door for your teenage years and you’ve got yourself a hot mess. I learned very quickly that kids are mean; both behind your back and to your face. That was the hardest part growing up and going through school. I would hear the word “fag” on what seemed like a daily basis. This was right around the time that Facebook had been taken to new heights and keyboard warriors started to emerge. I would get text messages, online messages saying the most obscene things. While I was being told to “be me” I felt that to have friends, and to be part of any sort of group, I needed to be the exact opposite of that. I would find solace and comfort alone, watching movies, going on walks, and food – that was the worst part of it all. I became addicted to eating, my emotions seemed to be fixed by eating, pair that with little to no physical activity and it was a recipe for disaster. Although I felt alone, I didn’t want anyone to know that I was, so I would lie to my family about who I was with, I always wanted to seem that I had it together, because the minute I admitted out loud that I didn’t would be the minute that I would crumble.

I never sought out the right help, likely because I didn’t know how to ask for it and this led me into a very dangerous world that I was far too young to be a part of. I didn’t feel like there were appropriate resources around me at school and in my personal life to seek a community, nowhere to go to ask questions, and as with any growing teenager, gay or straight, you become curious about your body and others. I took to the internet to find my answers. This led me down a very damaging. My self-image was shattered. I was spending time with people who were not good for me. People that at 15-years-old, you shouldn’t even be considering hanging out with. I was doing things that well surpassed my maturity level. Every window on any shed of light around my life felt like it was closed. There was no good in this world. I had convinced myself of that. Self-love, selfworth, care, respect, love and kindness all traits I hold to the highest esteem to this day, were all traits I didn’t bother to show myself. I didn’t want to go to school because I felt everywhere I turned I would get a verbal lashing from someone. Towards the end of my school career, it wasn’t even people making fun of me for being gay, it turned into them telling me that I wasn’t gay and this entire time I had done it for attention. Comments like, “We’ve never seen you with a guy. You are probably just trying to get with girls.” These comments couldn’t have been farther from the truth. No offence ladies. Being slightly overweight and Middle-Eastern made for a difficult transition into the gay community itself actually. For a group that is already a minority, we have a really bad habit of creating a larger sub division between ourselves. If you aren’t Caucasian, shredded and look like you just walked out of an Abercrombie and Fitch ad you would be an automatic left swipe (both hypothetically and literally on tinder if that’s your jam). I would read profiles online with the phrase “not fatties” in their bios, or “no spice, no rice”. I remember I used to lie in the ethnicity portion of dating profiles and select white because I so desperately wanted people to reply back to me. To notice me, to love me. My body and ethnicity

plagued me for the longest time, and wrongfully so. You really don’t need anyone to accept you. I had forgotten that. Looking back now, I had allowed the worst of our society to take a hold of me, when I so desperately just needed someone back then to hold me and tell me that it would all be ok. When you are overweight you don’t want anyone to tell you that you are overweight. You begin to tell yourself a story. A story that it is ok. That there is nothing wrong with your weight (in my case being 280 pounds). When people would try to talk to me about it I would lash out and get so upset and tell them that they were awful people. Much like anything in life you have to find your own two feet to push yourself back up. I remember when I was working at an office an email had just gone out for a corporate health and wellness challenge. There I was sitting at my desk. In the same seated po-

sition I would always find myself in, hunched over, hoping no one would look at me. I read the email about this challenge and instantly threw it in my junk mail. I told myself it was garbage. I didn’t need a challenge of any sort. I would drive home stop at every drive thru imaginable and eat my emotions whilst listening to podcasts in my car then rush home to get into bed and turn on Netflix. A co-worker who is now very good friend decided she was going to approach me. She walked by my desk and asked if I would participate. I scoffed at her. The suggestion seemed silly to me. I was also offended she thought I should be in the challenge. I took everything personally. She told me all I would have to do was eat some oatmeal, drink some water and go for some walks and I could win one of the many great prizes. Begrudgingly, I agreed to do it, and the next day she took my measurements. This would

show us how much we’ve grown through the challenge. I avoided the scale at all costs. No news is good news, right? The numbers terrified me. I remember crying in my friend’s office baffled by how I looked. It was as if in that moment the blinds had been opened up. To this day she has one of the biggest hearts that I know but won’t hesitate to give you tough love when you need it. She told me to snap out of it. To find my bearings and go to a gym. So I did just that. I got a gym membership and changed my eating habits. In a year I had lost thirty pounds. In the following six months I lost another twenty. That transformation was so much more than how my body looked. It was the start of loving myself again. I had lived a life of regret and sadness. I was angry at everyone. Never having let go of the past and the wrong doings I had done to myself and others had done to me. Lifting weights, cardio and spending time on cooking and eating turned into a form of self-love. People would ask me what my goal was. I would tell them it was to be happy. I continued on my journey and to this day still continue to take care of myself. Because that is the very least I owe myself. In the hopes of finding the perfect body I found Oliver all over again. It became my reinvention. The past seemed less heavy than before. Loving me for me seemed possible again. I stumbled across YEG Cycle when a friend asked me to try a spin class. I agreed because I was looking for that extra kick. I left my first class not wanting to admit how much more I wanted from it. I had this unexplainable desire to be back in that room and in the space. As summer was approaching I decided I would fill my time working at the front desk to immerse myself even further into the thing I couldn’t stop thinking about. During class I started to imagine myself up there, I would tell myself that I had a story to tell and in an instant I knew that this was the platform to do it. No matter how much weight I lost or will lose there are some things that your body won’t change. This is the funny thing about fitness. Your shape does not define how fit you




are. I had a fear that people would look at me and think he’s too big to be teaching a class. Or that they would doubt my ability based on a look. All of those worries and all of those fears got quickly demolished with four simple words “I believe in you”. I sat down with Andrew Obrecht, one of the owners of YEG/YYC Cycle one afternoon and that is what he told me. I explained to him that I knew this was the place I belonged, that there was a change in this world I wanted to effect, that I wanted to do something big. He told me he believed in me and if I trusted the journey and hopped on the ride with him I would have a world of opportunity at my feet. I can safely say that conversation with him changed my life. I won’t ever be able to put into words just how grateful I was for that day and for him. I was given an opportunity, a platform to effect change and I took it. And I soaked every minute of it up. There was a campaign a few years back called “It gets better” on YouTube and on television. It was directed towards youth in the LGBTQ+ community urging us to wait a couple years because it is bound to get better. I used to hate those ads. While the premise was founded from the right space, it couldn't have been farther from the truth. Fifteen-year-old Oliver couldn’t think about going to school tomorrow, let alone waiting a couple of years for it to get better. Looking back now I would tell my fifteen-year-old self that in fact it does NOT “get better”. That YOU have to actively work to make it better. You have everything you need to start your life today; you just have to be willing to try. You will fall, you will hurt, you will need help. It’s ok to cry, it’s ok to be scared, you just have to keep getting up. You have to keep pushing forward. Finding the strength that is buried so deep

inside you. I would remind myself just how beautiful I am, how my soul & heart are precious and should be guarded at all costs. I would hug myself and remind myself that pain is only temporary and tell the heartbroken fifteen-year-old me that YOU are loved! You are everything this world ever needed and more. I read a quote the other day by Louis Hay, “Remember, you have been criticizing yourself for years and it hasn’t worked. Try approving of yourself and see what happens.” In 10 years, I see myself continuing to grow with the amazing company and family at YEG Cycle I stumbled upon last year. I love being able to teach and see the faces of riders both new and old every day and hearing their stories and continues to inspire me. I see myself using my platform to spread love and kindness into this world. I hope to start a family by then. I think that would be full circle for me, watching my son or daughter grow to be exactly who they are meant to be. Finally, I see myself healing. Letting go of the pain, of the hurt and of the suffering—breathing in deeply and out and accepting the world for exactly what it is—amazing.

“I believe in you”

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Fag, Homo, Dyke. If that didn’t get your attention, it should. Those are the words heard by hundreds of LGBTQ athletes who have yet to feel comfortable enough to come out and be accepted in their sport. When you total the number of professional athletes in both men’s and women’s sports at well over 10,000 and you take the Kinsey Institute’s numbers for the 1 in 10 prevalence for homosexuality in adult men, it should seem odd that there aren’t more openly gay athletes. We may be in a new millennium and people’s belief systems may be changing, but the slurs and stereotypes LGBTQ athletes face in the locker room and on the playing surface are still there. They might not be as blatant but that doesn’t mean they’re gone.


We wanted to dig deeper to see if things really have changed over the years with players becoming more “accepting” of their LGBTQ teammates so we approached Olympic gold medalist Mark Tewksbury and two-time Olympic speed skater Anastasia Bucsis to get their takes on this important issue. More than two decades after winning

a pair of Olympic medals and breaking records in the pool, Mark is continuing to break down barriers for LGBTQ athletes. But the confidence he has today as an openly gay man didn’t come easy. “When I was swimming on the national swim team in the 80’s and 90’s, the world was a very different place,” he says. “There was still a lot of stigma about being gay in the general population, let alone the world of sport.” Mark felt that he had to be completely secretive about his personal life in order to prevent his career from falling apart. As one of the top professional, Canadian athletes at the time and certainly the best in the pool in the 100 m backstroke, he lived in fear that his secret lifestyle would be exposed and his career would be over. “There was constant homophobic language in locker rooms, and I was terrified that if anyone found out I was gay I would lose everything. Support from my team and coach would be gone, as well as any chance of funding or sponsorship,” he says. In his final year of competing, leading into the Barcelona Olympics, he

did some work with a synchronized swimming coach, Debbie Muir, who became a close friend. As their friendship grew, he finally felt that he could share his secret with someone.  “She was the first person in a position of authority I told,” he says.  “It was terrifying, but she accepted my news with open arms and became my most important confidante and supporter. “ Finally, 15 years into Mark’s career, he had someone to talk to, and could take that energy that used to be very negative inside and overcome it to focus on the external goal of winning the Olympics. How can you compete against the very best in the world if you are not 100% authentic in who you are? For Anastasia Bucsis, her journey of self-discovery was very similar to Mark’s. Coming from a different era didn’t mean coming to terms with her sexuality was any easier however. “I started speed skating at the age of four, and wasn’t aware of any other gay skaters when growing up,” she said. “During my coming out I was very anxious and lonely because I lacked having any “out” athletic role models. I didn’t have any other gay athletic YEGFITNESS



friends, or any mentors that I could readily turn to for advice or support.” Although she realized that she had numerous personality traits that made up her identity, in her own mind, the label of being ‘gay’ erased everything. She was incredibly anxious and confused off of the ice which quickly became debilitating on it. “My results—as did my mental health— quickly began to tailspin,” she says. “Especially as I felt I was being dishonest to the people surrounding me, I started to solely base my self-worth off of my results as a speed skater—something that every athlete understands will rob you of your happiness and internal peace.” Anastasia finally opened up after friend and teammate Kaylin Irvine encouraged her “to actually live an authentic life.” She said her announcement was greeted with nothing but support by family, friends and her fellow athletes. Both athletes admit that there has been a great deal of progress in the way LGBTQ athletes are treated by their teammates and competitors, however, they both agree that there is still a long way to go. “Sadly, I still feel like some of this sentiment is alive today in professional sport in spite of all the progress we have made as an LGBT community,” says Mark. “Sport is still slow to change, but initiatives like ‘You Can Play’ from Patrick Burke in hockey and ‘One Team’ at the Canadian Olympic Committee are taking steps to eliminate homophobia in sport.” When Anastasia was coming out of the closet in 2012, there were still very few active resources in place that she was aware of or felt comfortable reaching out to. “I had heard of You Can Play, but in the bowels of the Olympic Oval, I was still very much alone and still wracked with anxiety, shame and confusion,” she says. “I felt a paralyzing amount of loneliness while coming out, and so accepting myself was incredibly difficult because I felt as though I had to figure out everything on my own.”




Anastasia is now happy to be an active member of the COC’s One Team initiative and is a Western Regional Board Member for You Can Play. “I often feel embarrassed when I admit how much I struggled to accept myself and orientation,” she says. “But I’ve come to realize that when I gloss over the struggle, that’s doing a disservice to LGBTQ youth that are in the same place that I was.” Mark has also remained active in a leadership role for LGBTQ initiatives in sport, working with many different organizations to address issues of inclusion and diversity. He is most proud of being seen as a mentor for young athletes struggling to come out.  “Each year I meet confidentially with a number of national team athletes to support them on their journey much like Debbie Muir did for me when I was competing,” he says. Anastasia sums it up best when she says that sport is a mirror to society and sometimes it’s a magnifying glass. “Without discrediting any of the immense progress that we’ve made, we still have a long ways to go,” she says. “But I think people are more receptive to furthering the discussion about locker room homophobia and I also believe that people are slowly becoming more cognizant and aware of the power of language!”


CAJUN SHRIMP TACOS WITH GRAPEFRUIT PINEAPPLE SALSA & AVOCADO CREMA Let’s just take a moment to give it up for tacos. This amazing dish that comes in many shapes and sizes but pretty much always equals deliciousness As long as there is no “bell” in the title, anyways. I won’t even go there. Tacos have been one of my favourite go-to meals because they are quick, easy, super fresh-tasting, and can most often be quite healthy. I mean really, the basis of a good traditional taco is a tortilla, typically made with corn or another grain, a protein or carb main filling which has been grilled, stewed, roasted, or pulled. I just recently heard of vegan cauliflower tacos which I must try! And then are topped an array of fresh things like salsa, avocado, or cilantro. Please don’t be intimidated by the lengthy ingredients list, it’s mostly spices and each component is incredibly quick and easy to throw together!  PREP TIME: 15 minutes   Serves: 1-2

COOK TIME: 10 minutes

TOTAL TIME: 25 minutes

INGREDIENTS Cajun Shrimp: 12 large raw prawns, peeled and deveined 1 teaspoon olive oil ½ teaspoon salt ½ teaspoon garlic powder ½ teaspoons paprika ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper ¼ teaspoon onion powder ¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper


¼ teaspoon dried oregano

¼ teaspoon dried thyme ⅛ teaspoon red pepper flakes Grapefruit Pineapple Salsa: ½ grapefruit, peeled, segmented, and diced ¼ cup finely diced pineapple juice of 1 lime ½ tablespoon coconut palm sugar or honey 1 clove crushed garlic ¼ cup chopped cilantro ¼ teaspoon salt ¼ teaspoon pepper Avocado Crema: ½ avocado, peeled and pitted juice from ½ lime

Tacos & Toppings:

¼ teaspoon salt

4 Soft Corn Tortillas

¼ teaspoon pepper

¼ cup chopped fresh cilantro

2 tablespoons unsweetened almond milk

fresh lime

2 tablespoons water

In a small bowl combine all the spices for the Cajun shrimp and mix together. In a larger bowl add the raw shrimp, olive oil, and top with spices. Toss together with a spoon until the shrimp is well ` coated with the spices. Set aside. Create the salsa by combining all of the salsa ingredients in a bowl and mix well. Place in the fridge. Create the avocado crema by adding the avocado, lime juice, salt, pepper, almond milk, and water to a small food processor and blend until smooth. Place in the fridge. Fire up the BBQ and grill the shrimp for 5-7 minutes until done then chop into smaller pieces. Grill the tortilla shells to slightly to warm. Divide the chopped shrimp between 4 tacos, top each with 2-3 tablespoons of the salsa and drizzle with 1 tablespoon of the avocado crema. Garnish each taco with chopped cilantro and a squeeze of fresh lime.

Christal Sczebel is a Certified Holistic Nutritionist and the Owner of Pure & Simple Nutrition located in Edmonton, Alberta. She is also an avid blogger at her little space on the web:




Form vs Function.

Choosing The Best Plan For Fitness BY PAUL ROBINSON I’m wondering if we in the fitness industry have overdone the whole ‘squats and deadlifts’ thing. Sure, they are great functional, strength and flexibility building exercises that attempt to unravel a lifetime of sitting, but with close to half the Canadian population planted firmly in the overweight category, I’m not sure if these highly technical exercises are moving the needle on the health scale.

Finally, most trainers were mired in a staunch position unwilling to listen to others. The few trainers in the room who supported an empathetic, inquisitive approach were simply overruled by their more technical and vocal colleagues. Before I continue, it must be said that most modalities recommended by trainers had their merits. No doubt, if performed correctly, each routine would enhance Karen’s health in some way.

Simply put, are we making a difference in peoples lives or preaching to a microcosm of the exercise market?

The missing link in all of this was that no one took the time to understand Karen.

For several years, I conducted seminars at various conferences where I tasked trainers to prescribe a routine for ‘Karen’, an exercise adverse forty-year-old looking to lose weight and tighten up for an upcoming trip.

If Karen is too overwhelmed to squat in a relatively safe room of trainers, she is not going to squat in an intimidating fitness centre on her own. Comments such as, “Karen should try harder” and “Karen needs to be more motivated” were common. Karen confirmed that this type of prodding wasn’t helpful or motivating.

During the session, trainers would try to convince members of their small group that their exercise prescription was the most appropriate for Karen. The small group would then agree on a single group prescription and present to larger group for voting. The end game was to arrive at consensus. In some cases, I would bring a willing subject to the sessions to make the experience more realistic and interactive. During one workshop, a trainer asked our subject, who was nervous and wearing a sundress, to perform a squat in front of the group of 60 trainers so that he could assess her form. Karen looked to me for direction as she was visibly uncomfortable. I asked her if she could share her discomfort with the group to which she expressed embarrassment and unease. The trainer replied, “Well if you aren’t going to squat then I can’t help you.” I’ve repeated this exercise many times to well over 300 trainers from the East Coast all the way to Alberta and learned many interesting things. First, without fail, if there are 50 trainers in the room, there will be 50 very different perspectives ranging from yoga to CrossFit to bodybuilding. Each dogma comes with its own set of rigid beliefs and rules that shape the trainer’s prescription. Second, few trainers were interested in actively listening to Karen. Aside from screening for pre-existing injuries, many of them already had their answer with little interest in delving deeper into the complexity of the situation or reading some pretty obvious questions. Third, the trainers were focused on the technical aspects of exercise prescription and ignored the many psychological barriers that lead to Karen’s present situation. Too often Karen was overprescribed with complex movements, multiple sets and dozens of stretches.




Frankly, quick weight loss and conditioning is straight forward—especially for the clients who are motivated and committed. There’s no magic formula, just variations. These are our dream clients. Any trainer can be successful working with the wide-eyed keener who shows up early, chomping at the bit. The best fat burning HIIT program in the world however falls on deaf ears if the subject doesn’t feel empowered and engaged—and this takes time and patience. The magic formula here is connection. The dilemma isn’t whether trainers should prescribe squats and deadlifts its  when. What a client is prepared to do should determine the content and progression of each routine. In the end the fruitful trainer-client relationship hinges on trust and tolerance. In most cases the client who has moved through a series of graduated successes will turn up the heat on their own. It doesn’t take screaming and growling. I will leave you with this. A new client shared that she left her former trainer because he was disappointed with her performance. Seems backwards doesn’t it? Who’s the customer here? There are only so many keeners out there revving and raring to go. Let’s figure out how to help the rest. Paul Robinson has enjoyed 28 years as an executive, speaker, trainer and consultant in the fitness industry. He owns Kneifel Robinson (KR) Personal Training, with his partner Monica Kneifel Robinson, serving St. Albert & Edmonton. You can reach them at;



Obstacle course racing or, OCR is the sport of running various distances in technical terrain while completing various obstacles with strength, agility, and speed. OCR was considered a fad at first. A sport that wouldn’t last. Or a sport that the athletic world didn’t take seriously.


In only a few short years obstacle course racing became the fastest growing sport in the world. Ever. Events range from fun mud runs you can do as a team to competitive races. The community is amazing and no matter what level of athlete or how competitive the race there is always a fellow racer cheering you on, encouraging you, or helping you over that wall. This truly is as much of a team sport as it is an individual one. Training for these races is often overlooked but it is the most important part of your success and safety. Since the sport is relatively new, there are only a few places to train. There some options that have obstacles you can practice on but you can also prepare on your own with some inexpensive equipment and resolve to work hard. The key areas you need to focus in upper body strength, grip strength, and full-body conditioning. Below are some key exercises you can do to prepare for your next OCR. There are progressions for every exercise so pick the exercise suitable for your fitness level. Upper body strength is the most important thing to work on to be successful in obstacles. There are often monkey bars, ropes, walls to climb, and hoists to raise.

P UL L - UP S Before you say you can’t do pull-ups remember that there is a progression for every exercise. Pick the option suitable for you: - Beginner: Inverted Rows on Lebert Bar or TRX - Intermediate: Assisted Pull-ups (with band) or Jumping Negative Pull-ups - Advanced: Standard Pull-ups DEAD HANGS Grip strength is required to hang from various bars, ropes, etc. There are many ways to hang and you will want to work hanging different ways: - Hang from a standard bar (hands face forward, hands face backward) - Hang from a towel or rope - Hang with arms bent at 90 degrees W E IG H T E D L UN G E S In most races you will have to carry something heavy for a set distance. And it will most likely be up a hill of some kind. Leg strength is very important to be able to complete these obstacles. You can do many different variations of lunges to help prepare: - Walking lunges with a sandbag over your shoulders - Walking lunges holding bucket which is cheap and easy to find at any hardware store. Put the desired weight in the buckets and then lunge. I typically throw dumbbells in mine. - Bulgarian Split Squats. Hold a weight plate or dumbbell for added weight.

FARMER CARRIES This is a very easy exercise to do and so effective. Start with a lower weight and carry it a set distance. If you carry up hills and stairs you will be training both grip and leg strength. As you progress increase the weight and the distance. A good start may be walking 45 seconds with 25-pound weight plates.




BU RPE E S What would obstacle course race training be without burpees? Certain races use them as penalties so get practicing! G ET-U P S You spend a lot of time getting up and down in a race and practicing makes perfect. You simply lay down on your back and stand back up. You may use your hands to help if required but try to use just your core and strength. You can progress by adding a weight vest or holding a weight close to your body. BEAR CRAWL The bear crawl is my favourite. Simply walk forwards and backwards on your hands and feet in a bear position. Try keeping low, belly close to the ground or keeping you body high putting more weight in your shoulders, and go in all directions. A great way to combine these exercises together for a great OCR workout is to combine a cardio component with these exercises. For example try this sequence: 1. Run 400m 2. 20 Burpees 3. Bear Crawl 50 meters 4. Run 400 meters 5. 20 Get-Ups 6. 200 meters Farmer Carry 7. Run 400 meters 8. 20 Walking Lunges on each leg 9. 3 x Dead Hang to Failure Repeat One to Four times. I fell in love with this sport not only for the community and the competition but for the great all encompassing fitness you require to be successful. You don’t have to be super fast, you don’t have to be super strong, you need a little bit of everything, speed, strength, and agility. The challenges are endless and the training truly unique. Find some buddies, sign up for a race, and train with to get over that wall.

Summer Yoga Pass Unlimited yoga classes Until August 31

Pass valid from June 1 to August 31, 2017 for all drop-in yoga classes If you have a current 10, 20 or 40 class pass or an Unlimited, we will put it on hold for the summer, resuming on September 1, 2017

$333 plus GST

5954 Mullen Way Edmonton (Anthony Henday & Rabbit Hill Road)







et’s face it. Spring and summer is all about being outside and hitting the trails. Walking, biking, roller blading and resistance training?! Why not? Have you ever considered skipping the crowded gym and doing your workout in an Edmonton park or along a trail? Recent NAIT Personal Fitness Training grads put together some functional no-equipment exercises that will help you get your daily dose of Vitamin D while working on that beach summer body. A good exercise session works multi-joint, larger muscle groups before smaller muscles, so do this workout in the order suggested. These new fitness professionals also remind you to always warm up before beginning your workout and to stretch after. A warm up can be a five to ten minute brisk walk. Then when you come across a park bench, you’ve found your outdoor gym! Aim for 10-12 repetitions and two to three sets of each exercise.

SING LE-LE G LUNGE Here’s another exercise that targets your quads, glutes and hamstrings. While working these muscles, it will also challenge your balance. Find a surface that allows you to elevate your foot (bench, stairs, etc.). Place your back foot on top of the surface so your back knee is bent. Drop your butt toward the ground until your knee almost touches, then use your standing leg to push yourself back up. Protect your knee by making sure you’ve stepped forward enough so that your knee doesn’t pop forward over your toes. Need to dial it back? Lunge with both feet on the same, flat surface.

P L Y O S T E P - UP S This exercise is great for lower body strength and power. Using a bench or any elevated surface roughly knee height, place one foot on the higher surface and the other foot on the ground. Using the elevated foot and your arms for momentum, push off the platform hard enough to jump so both feet leave the ground. You can choose to alternate foot placement every time you jump or do a few repetitions on each leg and switch afterward. Need to dial it back? Use a lower platform, or simply take the platform out and do jump lunges on the ground. 

BENC H SQUAT SIDE RA I S E       Let’s not forget those outer thighs. Stand beside a bench or curb with one foot on the ground and the other elevated. Squat down as if sitting back in a chair then push up to standing. As you rise up, slowly lift outer leg to the side, without tilting your hips. Lower your leg and return to a squat. Repeat for all reps then change legs. Watch so that your knee doesn’t push out over your toes as you squat. Need to dial it back? Use a lower surface or simply do standing leg raises. PHOTOS BY CHAN RIN // VIVID RIBBON PHOTOGRAPHY




P IS T O L S Q UA T Here’s your summer challenge! Start with a range of motion you can manage, then work up to a full squat. This movement is both for building leg strength and balance, as well as a great party trick to show your friends. Hold your leg straight out in front of you and squat down and back up. For balance, you can hold onto something as you lower. As you build leg strength, challenge yourself by holding your arms out to the side or straight out in front. Need to dial it back? Do half the motion. Start in a one-legged squat on a curb or bench with your other leg extended and rise up using your supporting leg.

LA MP P OST SN OW AN GE L S QU A T S How about a summer/park version of snow angels? This functional exercise is typically done as a wall squat, but this is an outdoor workout. No walls around? How about a lamp post! This exercise is also great for your posture. It helps to fix those forward-slouched shoulders. Stand against a wall (or lamp post) with your feet a foot or two away. Think about pulling your belly button to the back of your spine to support your back, and rest your head against the wall, creating a double chin. Place your bent arms against the wall with your hands pointing up to the sky. Squat down to a 90-degree angle then squeeze back up. As your legs reach full extension, extend your arms up over your head while keeping your elbows against the wall. Need to dial it back? Break it up. Go straight to the wall angels or do a wall sit!   INC LINE PUSH-UPS Push-ups are a great way to build total and upper body strength. This exercise primarily works your chest (pecs), shoulders (deltoids) and triceps, with quite a bit of core muscle activation. For a park or trail version, place your hands up on a bench or any surface higher than the ground (you can experiment with the height), so that your upper body is elevated but in a straight line, resting against the bench. Push yourself up, making sure to squeeze your core and glute muscles in order to stabilize your whole body and prevent any sagging in your back or lower body. Lower down slowly and repeat. Need more of a challenge? Place your feet instead of your hands on a raised platform and do decline pushups. 

SIDE PL AN K CR UN CH Combining a crunch with a side plank challenges your stabilizing core muscles and your obliques. Lie on your side resting on your elbow and your bent knee. Lift your hip so that your body is in a straight line from your knee to your head. Extend your upper arm overhead then crunch your abs, bringing your elbow and knee together. Repeat. Make sure your supporting shoulder is in a relaxed, stable position. Need more of a challenge? Raise up to a full side plank – straight arm and resting on your foot.   TRIC EP DIP This upper body movement works your triceps. Hold on to a bench or railing at about hip height or lower. Place both hands behind you on the object. With your legs straight out in front of you, lower your body. Bend your elbows as you lower and push through your palms on the way up. At the top extend your elbows as far as you can (without locking them) and focus on feeling your triceps (back of arm) contract. Too challenging? Bend your knees and bring your feet closer to you. Need more of a challenge? Place your feet on something of equal height and do the same movement. YEGFITNESS



Bring Your Yoga Practice to the Park This Summer Andrew Misle is a name known to most in the yoga community in YEG. He is a Sattva Yoga teacher committed to sharing a practice that moves people through the illusions of consequence to connect with a deeper and more authentic experience of self. He inspires students to find their own inner revolution by combining the workings of body, breath and mind with a dynamic practice that leaves them feeling blissful, present and grounded. Over the past five years Andrew has overcome measurable health odds placed against him physically and through his journey with Crohn’s disease. His experience serves as testament of how aligning breath, body, and mind through a devoted yoga practice can radically overcome that which seems impossible. This connection can also awaken innate authentic truths about who you are and why you are here. Recently, Andrew and his fiancé Laura took a three-month trip, which started with a two-week vacation to the ancient cities and desert of Morocco. It has been a dream of Laura’s to travel there for quite some time. Andrew already spends about two to three months out of the year abroad or on the road leading retreats and workshops each year so it was important for them to have some time that was strictly vacation to fill up on inspiration and rest. From Morocco they landed in Delhi, India in preparation for a pilgrimage to North India's sacred cities in which Andrew will be spending two months leading two 20-day retreats in partnership with Breathe In Life. When they return back to YEG, he is most excited for the official kick off of summer with the 5th annual Sunrise Solstice Namaskar on June 21st (Summer Solstice) and well as their Sunday Sessions which will move outdoors to Hawrelak Park once the weather is warm—usually mid May. The idea behind Yoga In The Park came about because at the time, no one was offering an outdoor yoga class. “What I had intended to create was a class that was free for the community, but not only free, that it would be an anticipated class that brought people together to celebrate their practice and the vibrancy of this community,” he says. There is something really special about going to a class where the transaction is fellowship rather than money. No commerce, no expectations—just a grassroots class for the love of yoga and the community. “It has become what I look forward to the most in my week and I know for many it has become an opportunity to step out of their regular lives and feel the embrace of the community.” The outdoor Sunday Sessions are rain or shine events (literally) and often practicing amongst Pet in the Park attendees, Interstellar Music concerts and the many other events that call Hawrelak park home through the summer. They are also an opportunity to bring local artists, musicians, and to DJs together. Currently there are two resident artists, Lucas Wohlegmuth (aka DJ Woogie) and Sabastian Bolessa (aka The Sherpa), the multi-disciplinary percussion master. These two have become a staple to the Sunday Sessions and Andrew is deeply grateful for what they bring.




In 2013, the same year he began Sunday Sessions, he also created Sunrise Solstice Namaskar which was a sunrise class in the first year starting at 5 am on Summer Solstice in celebration of summer and the longest day of the year and it has been growing strong ever since. In the first year, 150 participants attended and last year we had over 1,500 people practicing at sunrise. The class is now at 6:30 am—a more reasonable time to accommodate people heading to work after! “Every year I have had the opportunity to teach this class alongside the soundscapes of DJ Robindra Mohar,” he says. “This year is the fifth year and we are hoping to create something very special.” If you are looking for a great outdoor experience in Edmonton we invite you to give “Sunday Sessions” a try. It is open to everyone, its free, its fun and you will love the music and vibe. There is no better way to celebrate summer in Edmonton. The Sunday Sessions will kick off Sunday, May 28th and continue every Sunday of summer beginning at 3 pm in Hawrelak Park. Follow the yoga mats & the music to just past the main parking lot by the lake. @andrew_misle @sattvasundaysessions


Coming from a Holistic perspective, gentle cleansing is beneficial to the overall functioning of the body. Remember, our exposure to toxins is greater than our bodies’ ability to eliminate them.


Although it is nearly impossible to avoid exposure to toxins, we can help our body detoxify. Detoxifying your body does not need to be done in an extreme manner like “The Master Cleanse”. You can start detoxifying by creating a shift in your lifestyle. Start by choosing whole organic foods, removing processed or refined foods, and sugar. Enhance your detoxification with a supplement like milk thistle, which supports liver cell regeneration, removal of toxins, and acts as an anti-inflammatory.

Facts, Myths and Tips


e can often get caught up in the headlines and all of the Instagram posts by celebrities about the benefits of cleansing. But what’s the real truth? Local Certified Holistic Nutrition Consultant Amber Paradis wades through the facts and myths of cleansing to help you deal with the hype. F A C T : Cleansing can be a controversial topic. M YT H: Our bodies can do it all on their own. F A C T : We can help our bodies with the dirty work. Our bodies are designed to eliminate harmful substances; however, our environment has an abundance of toxins. The volume of toxins we are exposed to can be greater than the amount our bodies are able to eliminate. M YT H: I don’t consume that many toxins. Plus, agricultural sprays are safe to consume in trace amounts. F A C T : Agricultural sprays are safe in trace amounts but you probably consume way more than trace amounts. Our day-to-day food contains pesticides, herbicides, fungicides, additives, preservatives, flavor enhancers, and more. Assuming you eat food daily, that is a lot of exposure! Then consider the amount of lattes, fast-food, energy drinks, pop, and alcohol that is consumed and consider the chemicals in daily products like cosmetics, plastics, cleaning agents, etc. Doesn’t it make you wonder if we are we consuming more toxins than our body has the capacity to process? M YT H: It’s not so bad, I had a green juice for lunch yesterday. That cancels it out. F A C T : Our toxic load is higher than we know or understand. Our exposure to toxins begins in the womb, which is the most crucial development time. In a study by the Environmental Working Group, they found an average of 200 chemicals in the umbilical cord and they wrote,“Of the 287 chemicals we detected in umbilical cord blood, we know that 180 cause cancer in humans or animals, 217 are toxic to the brain and nervous system, and 208 cause birth defects or abnormal development in animal tests.”

M Y T H : The purpose of a cleanse or detox is to help you lose weight. F A C T : The purpose of detoxification is to increase function of the body and rejuvenate your organs and tissues. The purpose of detoxification is not weight loss; although weight loss can be an added benefit. When you experience symptoms of discomfort on a daily basis—like constipation, diarrhea, fatigue, bloating, low energy, headaches, fatigue, skin problems or even irritability—your body is giving you a clear sign that it is congested with toxins. Congestion in the body can create symptoms previously listed and detoxification can help eliminate those symptoms. M Y T H : Lose 10 pounds in 10 days. F A C T : There is no need to jump on any “crash cleanse” you find on Pinterest. I recommend that you avoid these. You can cleanse, still eat, and not be tied to the toilet. F I N A L F A C T : Cleansing is a physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual practice. Toxins can also build up mentally, emotionally, and spiritually. Consider that it may be time to cleanse your life and your surroundings, including toxic people, a toxic job, or some pent up negative emotions. These also impact your life and the function of your body. So, when deciding to do a cleanse look at all aspect of your life and always begin with a gentle start, your body will thank you. KEY TAKEAWAYS: 1. Eat whole and organic foods! And eat lots of plants. 2. Use supplements like milk thistle, or even a pro-biotic! 3. Cleanse more than your body; cleanse your mind, soul, and spirit. Questions? Feel free to contact me on Instagram (@a.p_healing) or Facebook (Amber Paradis Healing). Happy cleansing!




Move Better.

The Benefits of TRXÂŽ Suspension Training BY MIKE CLARK Originally invented by a Navy Seal Commander as a means of keeping his SEAL elite special missions team fit, the TRX Suspension Trainer uses your bodyweight and gravity as resistance to perform hundreds of exercises. TRX has grown to become the leader in functional training. The TRX Suspension Trainer is now a mainstay in gyms across the world. It is used by top trainers, pro athletes in the NFL, NBA, MLB and NFL, and all branches of the military. So what makes suspension training so different and unique from your conventional exercise program? A LL LEV E LS, ALL GOAL S The ability to instantly modify the resistance by adjusting your body position during an exercise, with minimal impact or pounding on the joints, makes TRX Training a versatile, safe and effective training solution for all fitness levels. The workouts use a combination of flexibility, core, and strength exercises to safely build functional strength.


TRX A BDUCT E D LUNGE Targets: Lower back, abs, hips, knees, and ankles Adjust straps to mid-calf length, standing sideways to the anchor point. Place one foot in the foot cradles, center with the anchor point, with your shoulders over hips. Lower your hips until your front knee is at 90 degrees, driving the suspended knee to the side. Return to the standing position by driving through the heel of the front leg and extending through the hips. Repeat on opposite leg.

TRX A TOMIC PUSH-UP Targets: Neck, upper and lower back, arms, shoulders, and abs Adjust straps to mid-calf length. Start the exercise on your hands and knees, with both feet in the foot cradles, engage the core, lift body into a hand plank position. Lower your body down, bend the elbow 90 degrees. Extend your arms, lift hips slightly, bringing the knees toward chest


T R A I N M O V E M E N T S , N O T MUS C L E S In everyday life we move using multiple planes of motion at once. Traditional training typically constrains us to one plane of motion or isolated muscle movement. This can lead to muscle imbalances, instability, and joint dysfunction. TRX training creates a balanced and effective program by incorporating all three planes of motion so that the muscles work together to build strength, flexibility, balance and core stability. Reducing the chance of injury by training the way your body to move the way it was intended to. Mike Clark is the Co-Founder of Pure Wellness Studio, Master Personal Trainer, and a Grey Rank TRX Coach.

Complete three sets of each before moving on to the next exercise.

Adjust the straps to mid-length, stand facing the anchor point, with your feet in an offset position. Hold the handles with your palms facing down and arms extended. Lean your body back, keeping a lengthened spine. Pull your body towards the anchor point by pulling back and up with your right arm, and back and down with your left arm. Return to your start position. Alternate with the left arm up, and right arm down.


ALL CORE, ALL THE TIME Using only a single anchor point, the TRX suspension trainer is intentionally designed to be unstable. As your body changes positions during the movements your center of gravity is shifted. Forcing you to constantly activate your core muscles to stabilize, balance, and coordinate the body during every exercise.

TRY THIS: Perform the exercise for 45 seconds with a 15 second break.

TRX SPLIT-FLY Targets: Neck, upper back, arms and shoulders


TRAIN ANYWHERE Tired of missing workouts due to traveling, or lack of access to a gym? Weighing in at a mere 1.4 pounds, the compact and lightweight design of the suspension trainer allows you to efficient full-body workouts anywhere.


TRX C YCLE J UMPS Targets: Lower back and abs, hips, knees and ankles Adjust the straps to mid length and stand facing the anchor point. Elbows under shoulders, right leg forward, left leg back. Lower hips down and back keeping chest tall until left knee is an inch off the ground. Jump into air and switch legs so your left leg is forward and your right leg is back and immediately dip into a lunge.

TRX TRICE P KICKBACK S Targets: Neck, upper back, arms and shoulders Adjust the straps to mid length, facing the anchor point. Place your hands beside your hips, with your palms facing back, and create tension on the straps. Bend from the elbows, keeping the upper arm still, maintaining a lengthened spine. Press on the handle, driving the elbows into extension with the chest lifted, and eyes on the anchor point.

TRX BUR PE E Targets: Neck, upper and lower back, arms, shoulders, abs, hips, knees and ankles Adjust the straps to mid-calf length and stand facing away from the anchor point. Place one foot in foot cradle and center with anchor point, placing your shoulders over your hips. Drive your suspended knee back and lower your hips until back knee is two inches from ground. Place your hands on the ground, hop your grounded leg straight back to a plank and do a pushup. Hop your grounded leg forward and explode up to a jump. Repeat on opposite leg.




Sleepless in Seattle? Not A Chance. BY KAYLA ROY What if I told you it was possible to go on vacation without deviating from your fitness goals? This was a two-part resolution for me. I wanted to start travelling alone and I wanted to do yoga in different parts of the world. Knowing that Seattle is one of the best places to do yoga in the United States, not too far from home, this was the perfect week-long trip for me. From the top: I follow a paleo diet. My past experiences in travel included all-you-can-eat buffets at an all-inclusive resort, ice cream factories in British Columbia and a lot of restaurants. All of which made me sick. There’s always something about a destination that dozens of your friends and colleagues are going to say that you have to try when you’re there. You have to try the chocolate lava cake here. You have to try the deep-dish pizza here. I assure you, my vacation was not any less pleasant for not trying any of the fast food that I had to try. My first recommendation in keeping your food healthy is to stay at an AirBNB. It can be far less expensive than a hotel and most of the time you will have access to a fully functional kitchen. It was fairly easy to find the public market in Seattle. So I meandered down and bought some fresh produce and seafood. I have to admit cooking with fresh local ingredients was a lot more rewarding than paying $30 for an appetizer at the rooftop bar, but I did miss out on the breathtaking view from the top. However, shopping at the local market also gives you a chance to connect with local people who are always eager to share their knowledge about the area. Trip Advisor is a great tool because you can search for the best healthy restaurants and it will give you a top 10 list of places to try. This is how I came across the delicious rooftop bar that emptied my wallet! No names. The next step is finding a gym pass. Most gyms can set you up with a travelers pass. Instead of paying $20 a day for gym drop-in fees, you can find a location close to your hotel or AirBNB and pay a flat rate for one week. I did prior research and found that 8 Limbs Yoga was one of the oldest most renowned studios in the city. In Sanskrit, the term Ashtanga translates to having eight limbs or components. The physical practice of yoga is called Asana, which is the third limb. Within five minutes of talking to the woman at the desk, I knew this studio was about so much more than just the Asana and is rightfully named 8 Limbs. I loved that their approach was non-competitive. People tell me all the time, “I want to do yoga, but I’m not flexible.” In a non-judgmental environment, none of that matters. We’re all there to learn, that’s why it’s called a practice. The studio does teacher training and some of the most highly regarded teachers in the area studied here. They had workshops on self-compassion, handstands, yoga for anxiety and depression, guest appearances from authors, and so much more. I was lucky to be close to the original location at Capitol Hill so I had access to a lot of the studio’s history. I did level II flow yoga with Andreas Fetz. He was so great and let me take some photos of his favourite pose. (Photographed: standing visvamitrasana) To put this into perspective, I can’t even do that pose on the ground




because I tip forward and nearly break my wrists in half. Before class, Andreas wanted to dedicate the class to cleanliness. Cleanliness not only with our physical bodies but also with our thoughts and being clear with our own intentions. It lined up perfectly with my intention of staying true to my healthy lifestyle in a time where it can be so easy to forget to. I was also able to practice from my room other days using an online class. As for travelling alone, a lot of people asked me if I got lonely. The answer? Not even once. The great thing about being alone is not only doing whatever you want when you want, but you become a part of your surroundings. If I had a question, I would simply ask another human being. Which is a new cool thing I’m trying. Because I had done so much research beforehand, people thought I was a local. I even had to stop myself from pretending to be a tour guide just to see if someone would fall for it. Overall, travelling to Seattle alone was an amazing experience that I would highly recommend everyone tries once. It has inspired me to continue doing whatever I want all the time and to see what else this beautiful world has got going on.


JUNE 10 & 11, 2017 | MSBIKE.CA

YEGFITNESS - May/June 2017

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