Thursday, December 27, 2012

Urdhva Dhanurasana

1- Lie supine on the floor. Bend your knees and set your feet on the floor, heels as close to the sitting bones as possible. Bend your elbows and spread your palms on the floor beside your head, forearms relatively perpendicular to the floor, fingers pointing toward your shoulders.

2- Pressing your inner feet actively into the floor, exhale and push your tailbone up toward the pubis, firming (but not hardening) the buttocks, and lift the buttocks off the floor. Keep your thighs and inner feet parallel. Take 2 or 3 breaths. Then firmly press the inner hands into the floor and your shoulder blades against the back and lift up onto the crown of your head. Keep your arms parallel. Take 2 or 3 breaths.

3-Press your feet and hands into the floor, tailbone and shoulder blades against your back, and with an exhalation, lift your head off the floor and straighten your arms. Turn the upper thighs slightly inward and firm the outer thighs. Narrow the hip points and lengthen the tailbone toward the backs of the knees, lifting the pubis toward the navel.

4-Turn the upper arms outward but keep the weight on the bases of the index fingers. Spread the shoulder blades across the back and let the head hang, or lift it slightly to look down at the floor.

BENEFITS: Stretches chest and lungs/ Strengthens arms, wrists, legs, buttocks, abdomen and spine/ Stimulates thyroid and pituitary/ Increases energy and counteracts depression/ Therapeutic for asthma, back pain, infertility and osteoporosis 

No Excuses

Friday, December 14, 2012

Juice Junkie

Juicing is one of the best things I do for my health. Since making it a part of my routine, not only does my skin feel brighter and healthier, my nails are stronger and my energy levels in the morning are wayyyy up! 
When I down that glass of this green goodness I literally feel  my cells start to buzz... below is just one example of the stuff I will throw into the juicer- it's really hard to go wrong and I have yet to find a combination of veg and fruit that doesn't taste AMAZING together. 

Need more inspiration to get your a glass of this flowing...??

Here are some more juicy benefits:
- Cellular detox
- Less inflammation (see acne, rosacea and other skin conditions)
- Boosted immunity
- Mental Clarity
- Leaner body
- More restful sleep
- Better digestion
... the list goes on and on and on...

Thursday, December 13, 2012

"all the powers in the universe are already ours. it is we who have put our hands before our eyes and cry that it is dark" 

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Challenge: 6 Minute Plank

30 Seconds Forearm Plank 
30 Seconds Straight Arm Plank 
(Repeat 2x) 
60 Seconds Right Side Plank 
60 Seconds Left Side Plank 
30 Seconds Hip Drops 
30 Seconds Knee Drops 
(Repeat 2x) 

Saturday, October 13, 2012

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Ironman 2012

Over the last year I have been training to race in the 2012 Penticton Ironman and on August 26th that goal was finally realized.  

The morning of the race I anticipated being extremely nervous, however, as the day approached I realized that I had truly worked too hard and thought about this moment for too long to ruin it with my nerves. So I slapped on my brave face and went in with confidence. Getting to the race start was part of the process- my best girlfriend and sister drove Troy and I in, and we blasted my theme song of the day to really get us going- Callie and Char were both in tears by the time we got out, but I felt pumped! Of course it didn’t hurt to have my coach/boyfriend guiding me through the morning. Prior to the race before walking down to the water he gave me some final words of encouragement: stay focused, use your head, and enjoy the day… Now let’s do this.

The race started with the 3.9km swim and by some miracle I was the most comfortable I have EVER been in an event. Normally I am gasping for breath and sighting out a canoe to come and rescue me, but this time just felt different. The morning was bright and sunny, the lake was clear and I just became another body in the mass of people dodging and weaving their way along the course. I had gone over this swim in my head probably 200 times before, so part of me couldn’t believe when it was over… I popped out of the water and was proficiently ripped out of my wetsuit by two amazing volunteers. I was so proud of myself, and we were only an hour and a bit in!

Heading to the tent to get into my bike gear was seamless as there were tons of people helping out, laying out my shoes, lathering me up in sunscreen and generally just being there. I quickly put my sunglasses on to hide the goggle imprints lining my face and just as I was pushing off on my bike, heard Troy’s name being announced meaning that he was out of the water. I beat Troy- another point for me on that swim! Sorry Troy… now I just had to hold him off on the bike.

Again, things could not have gone better on this 180km ride. My legs felt amazing and I was still flying high from my swim, not to mention the amazing support crew I caught a glimpse of as I rode past (My family, Troy’s family, and our friends). I was full of energy and rode that way. About 130km in, Troy and I were lucky enough to bump into each other and so rode the last 50km together. Riding back into Penticton after 6 plus hours on the bike felt incredible! I was actually looking forward to stretching out my legs, busting out this marathon, and pushing myself through the final leg of my day.  

Troy and I started off together, but since he was averaging 12km/hour and my pace is 10, I hung back and did my own thing. Over the course of the run, which is an out and back to Okanagan Falls, I basically planned the next five years of my life, held back some (but not all) tears, passed a lot of walkers, sang to myself, or sometimes just coached myself under my breath… It can get pretty lonely out there. On the other hand, I was also blown away by the support along that course- shouts of “Good job Kate, nice pace, looking strong etc” rang consistently throughout, and seeing my family along the way was one of the most special feelings. There was a lot of love on the side of that road. Just bearing witness to that was a big part of my day and my motivation to keep going no matter how tired, how sore, or how anything, I was.

I ran those 42km in 4 hours and 8 minutes, but it was probably the last 5km that were the hardest both mentally and physically. When I actually got back to the city center where hundreds of people were standing on either side of the street cheering for ME I knew that I had done it. I could see the finish line, I could see my family, and I knew that Troy would be there waiting for me to cross… Really we had put in so many hours training together, and having him at the end was extremely emotional. I balled my eyes out immediately (Seriously, if you ever want to deepen your relationship, go ahead and train for an Ironman together- there is pretty much no ground you don’t cover after the 100th run together… I’m just sayin’)

But really, the day couldn’t have gone any better and I really am proud of what I was able to achieve out there… 12:35 minutes. Only 20 minutes behind my Veteran boyfriend. I mean, I am 9 years younger, but who’s askin’?

I will definitely do Ironman again… already thinking about next year in Coeur D’Alene.

Coming in on the bike... Troy let me go first so I could really soak up all the cheers... Doug is in the background getting everyone's attention. I know from experience what a thrill it is to see your "person" come through. 

Tim, Mon, Greg and Ricci... IronFANS! 

I adore this photo. Looking fresh Late!

Troy you are looking HOT!

Making my way back into the city!

Feeling on top of the world here. So emotional! 

Our Family and biggest supporters. Thanks for coming guys- We love you! 

Friday, July 20, 2012

Cardio Kick & Refuel!

20 High Knees: 10 Split Jumps
10 Burpees: 10 Pushups
 5 Floor Touch Jacks (as your feet open up into a jumping jack touch your fingertips to the floor): 5 Tuck Jumps

Repeat 3 Rounds at 1 minute each

Follow up your workout with a simple Banana Protein Shake: 1 Banana, ½ cup Almond Milk, ½ cup, water, 1 scoop Vanilla Protein Powder, 3 ice cubes

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Subaru 1/2 Ironman Victoria 2012

On June 17th I raced in the Victoria 1/2 Ironman at Shawnigan Lake... The race was definitely a mental game for me, as I am still really NOT comfortable during the swim. However, I know that every race  and every training day in the pool is making me stronger in the water. 
My time was 5:52- not my best, but sometimes just finishing feels like enough. 
Countdown to Ironman Penticton is officially on. 

Saturday, April 14, 2012

Healthy Granola Bars

While I typically would clean my house when I am stressed out or emotional rather than cook, this week I found myself baking my feelings away on a rainy Monday evening.
Since the thought of baking powder and baking soda really does not lure me into the kitchen (too technical), I thought that this recipe that I found on the No Meat Athlete website sounded more up my alley... Who doesn't want a chickpea in their granola bar?!

**Picture c/o No Meat Athlete

Here is what you need:
- 1 can chickpeas, rinsed and drained
- 2 tsp cinnamon
- 2 tsp natural sugar (I didn't have this so I used maple syrup)
-1 1/2 cups oats
- 1 cup whole grain cereal (I used some Organic Flax flakes, anything will do)
- 1 cup dried fruit (I used raisins)

- 1/2 cup natural peanut butter
- 1/4 cup honey
- 3 tbs canola oil
- 1 tbs ground flax seed

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees
Mix the ground flax seed with a 1/4 cup of warm water, set aside to thicken.

Toss the chickpeas and maple syrup and 1 tsp of cinnamon. Bake for 10 minutes, stir around in the pan, then bake for another 10 minutes. Add oats to the pan and bake for 5 more minutes, stirring once.

Stir together the peanut butter, honey, canola oil and flax paste.
Combine the chickpeas/oats, cereal, dried fruits and remaining cinnamon.
Add the wet ingredients and combine.
Press the mixture into a greased pan (I used an 8x8). Really press it and pack it as hard as you can.
Refrigerate until firm and then cut into bars.

Monday, March 26, 2012


Getting up and out the door in the morning is major. Especially when you may be required to pack multiple outfits for the gym, an ipod, extra heels for work, deodorant, and a healthy lunch and snack. Nevermind if you also have to prepare someone else's stuff... Like kids, or a sleeping boyfriend ;)

Like anything in life, plans tend to fall by the wayside when you aren't prepared, which is why I have started pre-packing my smoothie ingredients and putting them in the freezer for each day of the week. As this ritual is one non-negotiable that definitely adds some time to my morning, it is so much easier to know that everything is ready to go. All I have to do is throw it in the blender with some water... Genius.

This Week's Concoction:
-1/4 of a can of canned Pineapple,
- Handful of Spinach
- 2-3 Romaine lettuce leaves
- 1/2 Banana
- 1/4 cup frozen Blueberries
- Hemp Protein
-E3 Live Algae
- Filtered Water

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Balancing the Body

I just started reading Kris Carr's book, Crazy Sexy Diet and was re-inspired to ensure that the food I am eating is the BEST possible for my body.

Troy and I were talking last night and realized that since we started drinking a Green Smoothie daily, neither of us have been sick. Especially working in an office you really notice when the flu or a bug goes around and neither of us have been affected.

This morning I made an Apple and Greens Smoothie: 1 apple, 1/2 cucumber, 3 stalks of rainbow chard, 1/2 cup raspberries, and lots of water.

Starting our day out with a hit of all these amazing fresh fruits and vegetables helps to maintain the acidity of the body, which plays a HUGE role in our overall health. Basically the more acidic we are, the more susceptible our bodies are to the natural bacteria bombarding us on a daily basis. As our body strips cells of important minerals and nutrients in an attempt to regulate our PH, germs are able to invade.

PH is measured on a scale from 0-14... Anything above 7 (neutral) is alkaline, anything below is acidic. By eating foods that are already alkaline and minimizing those that are acidic, we help our bodies find that perfect balance (around 7.3-7.45 or slightly alkaline)

Alkaline Foods = Healthy and GLOWING!

- Vegetables (spinach, broccoli, parsley, kale... *Basically anything leafy and green)

- Dried Figs, Rasins, Kiwis, Apples, Pears, Berries

- Rice, Quinoa, Millet, Oats

- Goat Cheese (feta!)

-Olive Oil

-Green Tea, Ginger Tea, Lemon Water

Acidic Foods= Not so glowing :(

- Beef, Pork, Canned Tuna

- Eggs, Cheese

- Pasta, Pastries, Cookies... anything with refined sugar

- Peanuts, Cashews

- Coffee, Alcohol, Soda, Black Tea

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

February 20 Day Challenge...

In my class this morning I don't know how, but I started day-dreaming about the 30 day Challenge I had set up for myself last month. Basically I started feeling guilty because I haven't been able to think of a good challenge for February... Or I guess truthfully, there is nothing I wanted to restrict myself in. Every time I came up with an idea, I shut it down because I really didn't feel committed to doing it.

I'm only human afterall.

As it is already Feb. 8th, I figured that doing something is still better than nothing, so I decided that a good challenge sometimes means adding something in, rather than taking away.

This applies further if you are the type of person who tries to diet, but finds that restricting chocolate/carbs/sugar etc, only makes you crave more chocolate/carbs/sugar etc... Adding something healthy to your diet can simply be the first step.

So my "add in" is to drink a full glass of water every morning and start my day out with some much needed hydration. Nothing major, or even life changing, but just one more thing to keep the bod at it's BEST!

On that note... here is what I probably should have been focusing on this morning.. I don't think my class noticed...

Round 1 of our workout:

1-High Knees

2-Heavy Weight Squat and Press

(Hold the weight in front of your chest with both hands... As you squat keep the weight in close, as you stand press it up overhead)

3- 3 Split Jumps with 1 Kick

(Perform 3 splits jumps starting with your right leg in front. On your third jump your left leg will be behind you, kick that leg straight in front and then step back into your split squat... Repeat on other side)

4- Explosive Jumping Jacks

(Start with your feet together and jump out like you are about to do a jumping jack- open your feet wider than normal and sink down low. Jump feet back together in standing)

Complete 5 Rounds of these 4 Exercises @ 30 seconds each= 10 Minutes

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Protein Power Cookies

Since reading Brendan Brazier's book, The Thrive Diet, I have been kind of obsessed with packing as much nutrient dense food into my life as possible. That being said however, I am still learning my way around the kitchen, and so when my Protein Power Cookies turned out to be a hit, not only last night, but on today's 1.5 hour bike ride to UBC, I am literally chomping at the bit to whip up the next batch.
They are all natural and will provide you with just the right amount of proteins, fats, carbs, and sweetness to curb a sugar craving, or power you up for a training session.

Here's what you need:
3 T flax seeds (ground into meal)
3/4 c almond milk
2 c old fashioned oats
1/4 c sunflower seeds, chopped almonds & chocolate chips
1/2 c raisins
1/2 c protein powder (i use Vega Vanilla Chai)
3 T honey
3/4 t salt
1/4 t vanilla

Preheat oven to 350 degrees and grease a cookie sheet with small amount of oil... Mix flax seeds into almond milk and set aside... Combine all other ingredients in a bowl and then add milk... Stir it up good- you may feel like it's a little dry- it's not... Form into 8-12 balls and place in oven for 6-8 minutes... Remove from oven and let them cool completely.

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Thai Chicken Salad

Tonight's dinner was from a cookbook I use called "Eating for Energy".
Because I favour really easy meals over anything extravagant, I thought that this one was on the medium side in terms of prep-work (only b/c you mix 2 separate sauces: this is big for me)... Other than that it was really easy and very tasty!

1. Slice chicken breast and tofu into strips; saute in oil with garlic, ginger, soy sauce and teriyaki sauce. Set aside.

2 Chicken Breasts (skinless/boneless)
1/2 Package of Extra Firm Tofu
2 tsp ginger crushed
2 Tbsp soy sauce
2 Tbsp olive oil
2 Tbsp teriyaki sauce

2. Add dressing ingredients to pan, heat and stir.

2Tbsp balsamic vinegar
2 Tbsp organic brown rice syrup (can use brown sugar here too)
2 Tbsp organic almond butter
2 tsp sesame oil
2 Tbsp soy sauce
2 Tbsp teriyaki Sauce
Sprinkle chili powder
Fresh squeezed juice from 1/2 a lime

3. Place 1 cup of noodles on a plate and top with spinach, green onions, sliced peppers, nuts and chicken. Add dressing and sprinkle with fresh cilantro.

1 bag baby spinach
2 green onions
1/4 cup fresh cilantro
1/4 cup toasted peanuts
1 red bell pepper thinly sliced
1 package of brown rice noodles (You could also use whole wheat pasta here)

Friday, January 6, 2012

NYC 2012 Marathon

New York Marathon: 30 Spots guaranteed c/o Groundwork Athletics!
If you have ever thought about running a marathon, here is your chance to join us in New York next November for this World Famous event!

A lot of people might look at this race and immediately talk themselves out of it, list all the reasons that they can't do it, or just think it is impossible....
Consider that anything is possible....
That your decision to even say the words "I can't" has already set you up for failure...
Imagine if you just said "I can"...
Dwell in the possibility of "CAN"

Monday, January 2, 2012

January 30 Day Challenge

One of my goals for 2012 is to come up with a 30 Day Challenge every month to keep me on track with my health, and to remove some of the pressure that can sometimes be associated with New Years' Resolutions.
For January I have decided to cut out sugar from my diet, which at the moment doesn't seem too hard considering I have been indulging in pretty much whatever dessert I have wanted over the last month without guilt.
The rules are simple, no cookies, cakes, candies, etc- as well as no sugar in my coffee and a limit of 1-2 servings of fruit per day (sugar is sugar kids)... I'll let you know how it goes.

What are you willing to do for 30 days?