Tips on How to Stay Active while Traveling with Reebok

Staying active while on the road is easy. All it takes is just a little extra planning ahead and organization. Over the last little while I’ve come up with a simple formula and a few simple tips that can help you also keep moving while you’re on the go.

1) Whenever I know I have a trip coming up, I always make some time either the night before I leave or even at the airport the morning of (because we all know we spend lots of time doing nothing at the airport), to look up local running routes in advance that are close to where I’ll be traveling to and evening staying. I will then map out a few different runs or at least some key points of interests that I want to visit while I’m running and make a quick list on my phone. I sometimes even record the actual route itself on my phone via one of my running apps so that I am ready to go when I arrive.

2) I always pack my Reebok Floatride Run shoes with me so that I can easily take them out of my suitcase when I get to my hotel room or Airbnb. After a long flight or long day of travel, I’ll usually go for a run immediately when I get to my new destination. The Reebok Floatride Run shoe is cushioning without compromise, it is soft and also responsive, making me feel like I’m floating through my runs. The new shoe comes in new colour options and combines performance and aesthetic all into one.

3) I try to find unique local run clubs or even fitness studios to book some drop-in classes. I make sure to mark off some time in my schedule, even if it’s just 30 minutes to work out and also meet new people. Traveling gives you access to different workouts you may not even have at home as well as a whole new crew of people to meet, which is awesome!

4) If I don’t have the chance to make it out anywhere, I will use the environment around me; so either the gym in my hotel, my hotel room or even a nearby park to get a little workout or some drills in. It’s easy to just take your phone with you and either write down a few exercises or follow a video or an app.

5) If I know I’ll be traveling with friends or going to see family, I try to get them to take me out for a run or organize a little workout together. It makes it that much more of a fun experience for everyone and great memories to share while on the road.

Running and being active has become my first priority while traveling and as a result I’ve seen so many benefits in both my overall mood, stress levels and well-being while away from home. Therefore, I highly recommend giving these tips a try!

The Reebok Floatride Run shoe is available exclusively at Running Room and Reebok.ca.

This article was written in collaboration with Reebok but all opinions are my own.

5 Questions With: Smash + Tess

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The mother and daughter best-friend trio hailing from Vancouver that make up Smash + Tess, are all about sharing their passion for dreamwear. They founded their business together in early 2016 and have as a mission to make women feel confident and beautiful at all times, from the boardroom to the bedroom. The trio uses ethically sourced and quality fabrics to design and produce their line in North America. Get inspired by this mother-daughter team by finding out more about them below!

1) What made you want to start Smash + Tess?

We wanted to fill the hole that we believe exists in sleep and loungewear. After years of trying to find the perfect sleep/loungewear, we decided it was time to just go for it and do it ourselves! Smash + Tess began with a serious love of all things cozy and fashionable, became a reality in Fashion college, and has been bringing dreamwear to Canada and the US since our launch in April of 2016.

2) Where do you draw inspiration for your designs?

From so many places!  We are native Vancouverites that love our city! It is so beautiful and we have a killer studio with high ceilings, in the creative area of Mount Pleasant to be inspired by! Just walking down the street and seeing huge murals of incredible art, and courageous street style makes us excited about creating. The rain (which I do love by the way) is the perfect catalyst for creating cozy! The three of us have long had a dream of creating “dreamwear” that can easily transition from bed to the street, that you can answer the door in and not be embarrassed, that doesn’t sacrifice beauty for comfort. So we’ve drawn on years of trying out different loungewear, and not being entirely satisfied. 

3) What is the best part of working as a mom-daughter bestie team?

We all bring something different and exciting to the table! It’s incredibly special. A true dream realized. Mama T is a fantastic decision maker. She absolutely trusts her gut and isn’t afraid to pull the proverbial trigger. Mercedes is incredibly detail-oriented and isn’t afraid to roll her sleeves up and get the job done. I would say that they likely admire and appreciate my vision and passion for communicating what we are all about!

4) How has a city like Vancouver helped your brand? Is there a lot of support in the city for small businesses?

We feel so blessed to be in such a supportive and amazing network of strong female entrepreneurs. We have been so pleasantly surprised at the collaborative spirit in our city. We continue to enjoy meeting and working with other boss babes from our hometown!

5) Where would you like to see the line in 5 years from now?

In five years from now, we would love to have grown exponentially. We so believe in our mission, and hope to have ladies far and wide rocking some Smash + Tess. We hope to continue to evolve and offer fun and exciting alternatives to male-inspired PJs and yoga wear.

For more info on Smash + Tess, go here.

5 Ways to Reduce Stress During the Holidays

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The holidays are just around the corner and though it can be the most exciting and joyful time of year it can also be a very stressful time for some. Because I have been on the path to reduce and eliminate as much stress from my life as possible these past few months, I thought I would share some of the things I’ve learned in hopes that it may lead to a more relaxing holiday season for you all!

1) Download the Headspace app. The Headspace app has been my go-to during the past year when my schedule’s gotten crazy, when I’ve wanted to decompress or deal with a stressful situation. The app is a guided meditation and mindfulness app that helps you deal with whatever situation or feelings you may be going through in life. You can download their free introductory series Take10, they offer 10 sessions of 10 minutes. It has been a HUGE help with my anxiety, insomnia and has helped me become more calm and focused as well as a happier and healthier person.

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2) Get sunlight. The sun is a great way to produce serotonin, the feel-good chemical, which is a great way to alleviate stress and anxiety during the holidays. It can also help reduce the Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD), something I have been affected by in years prior. My favorite things to do even during these colder months is either going for a walk during the day, go for a run, riding my bike (when there’s no snow!), go snowboarding, etc. Vitamin D will be a huge mood booster and stress reliever during this busy time of year.

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3) Stick to a routine. During the holidays, it’s easy to get overwhelmed with all the parties, events and things you have to do. Hence why sticking to a routine as much as possible is incredibly important. Prioritize the things that you absolutely have to do and ditch or play by ear the things that aren’t mandatory. Squeezing in too much can lead to extra stress for nothing.

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4) Don’t forget to work out. The holidays may be extremely busy but there’s no reason why you shouldn’t make time for yourself every day. Even if this means getting up an hour earlier every morning, or taking some personal breaks during the day, this oh-so precious “me time” will have a huge impact on your day and how you feel during the holiday season. If you don’t have time for a long gym workout, run, swim, etc. get active for 15-20 minutes, anything counts. Even if you can only do one quick NTC app workout in the morning by your bedside, your head and your body will thank you. I always feel so much calmer and energized after I take time to work out every day. Plus it’s a great way to reflect, focus and make sure that you are taking care of yourself.

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5) Ditch the smartphone. Take time to really enjoy the holidays this year. Enjoy in-real-life conversations, debates, enjoy the quality time with your friends and family. Make an effort to put your phone away or put it on airplane mode. You don’t need to be browsing Instagram, obsessing over what everyone got during the holidays, what people are doing, etc. Be grateful for the present moment, the interactions you’ll have. It’ll make you feel a lot calmer and most definitely less stressed!

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Van Life Playlist

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Listening to good tunes while doing a road trip is a must! Prior to leaving on this travel adventure, I was still working full-time in the music industry. Immediately after I left my network television gig I was in need of a “music detox” from the 10+ years I spent working in the music biz.

Living in an Escape Campervan these past two months has reignited my love for music. Driving around has allowed me to discover great new artists and has opened my mind and heart up again for music. Though I will no longer be pursuing a career in the industry, I’m happy to be reconnecting with music as “fan” instead of a critic.

I have decided to share with you today some of the songs that have been playing in the Escape Campervan these past couple of weeks in hopes that you might also discover something new!

Speaking of enjoying music, I’m doing a giveaway on my Instagram profile right now that allows you to win a brand new LG Bluetooth speaker! You can check it out here.

Tech Talk: Huawei Nova Plus

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One of the things I love most is documenting my travels, as I’m sure you may have noticed if you’ve been following my adventures on this website these past couple of years. Whether it’s through photographs, videos or via social media, I love sharing with everyone some of my travel finds, activities, encounters, etc. Because I’m always on the go, I don’t always bring along my camera so having a reliable phone that I can use not only as a means of communication but also as my main camera is a huge plus. I was therefore incredibly excited to take the Nova Plus on my most recent road trip up the California coast.

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Big Sur, California shot with the Huawei Nova Plus.

Huawei‘s latest release, the Nova Plus smartphone, an incredible device that features some of the best technology currently on the market at a low price point.

One of my favorite features on the Nova Plus is the exceptional 16-megapixel rear camera that allow for some of the highest definition photo and video captures. The photos and videos produced with the phone are sharp and vibrant.  The phone’s long battery life enables you to take thousands of photos and countless videos without having to run and charge the device. Furthermore, the phone’s internal photo editing parameters and software, allows me to edit my photos directly on the phone without having to pass them through other app before sharing.

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The Nova Plus shoots perfect contrast on gloomy days in San Francisco.

It also allows you to shoot in 4K, which has become the new industry standard for videos. Moreover, the internal OIS image stabilization system allows for pristine photos and videos. Plus, the camera allows for wide-aperture photography and quick photo taking, so you don’t ever miss out on any action, which is a huge deal for me since I’m always being so active. The camera also fares incredibly well in low light settings.

Additionally, the phone’s 5.5inch display screen and 1920×1080 resolution screen allows for great viewing capacity. The phone’s size and curved edges also makes it easy to hold in the palm of your hand when taking photos. Plus, the new 2.5D glass material allows for a greater sense of depth and most importantly improved scratch resistance, which is a must when traveling non-stop.

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The vibrant colours of a sunset shot with the Nova Plus.

The Nova Plus’ high-performance 14nm processor allows me to upload and share the content that I shot while on the road at very high speeds, without consuming ridiculous amounts of power.

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Each photo shot with the phone is so crisp, almost making you feel like you’re there!

All in all, it has been a great asset to have with me on the road these past couple of weeks. I’m thoroughly impressed by the content quality that I have been able to produce with the Nova Plus. I will be sharing a few videos in the coming weeks all shot with the new Nova Plus. Stay tuned!

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For more information on the Huawei Nova Plus, go here.

SPINCO

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People in Toronto LOVE their spin studios. Spinning has become the latest trend to hit the 6ix. Though a little behind American cities like Los Angeles and New York, the spin craze has hit the city hard since the beginning of 2016. The latest and greatest studio to open up on the city is SPINCO, located at Yonge and Eglington.

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Originally from Kelowna, the brand new Toronto studio is their second location and they are planning on opening up a third in November in Victoria, BC. As for what separates SPINCO from other spin studios, their founder Michelle August explains “SPINCO’S experience is one of a kind, from the moment you walk through our doors to the last sweat dripping pedal stroke. Magic happens in that room and we see it leak into our riders and into our community, once the momentum starts it’s impossible to stop,” she says, while adding, “Our instructors go through an extensive training over the course of a number of months. We want every rider to have the confidence in all of our instructors, to have the ability to take any class knowing they are going to get a killer workout, knowing there instructor is filled with fire and ready to push them through there 50mins of work… It’s basically a party on a bike.” 

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SPINCO is all about building a community of riders and cycle enthusiast in the city and have already partnered up with a local favorite Peace Collective on a cool collaboration. “By joining forces we think we can make a major impact in some lives of underprivileged children. Aside from our clothing, our main focus as partners will be our ‘Spin-It-Forward’ classes, happening every Monday night at 6:30pm. Spin-It-Forward is a class by donation with 100% of the proceeds in support of the Peace Foundation. Peace Foundation supports the Boys and girls Clubs of Canada in providing weekly access to recreational sports to Canadian children,” explains Michelle.

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In addition to great cycle classes, riders will also be able to fuel up pre and post-class with some healthy juices, smoothies and bowls made from local companies.

So next time you’re looking to get your cycle fix, try out the new SPINCO studio!

Want to know more? Check them out here.

What Motivates You?

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What motivates you to get out there, day after day, week after week, month and month and year after year? What motivates you to do what you love, to keep going during hardships and never give up on your dreams or goals? What motivates you to keep your head held high when everything around you seems to be bringing it down?

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For me, it’s my passion for life, my desire to be better, my want to surpass myself and my inner voice that just won’t quit. For the first time in a long time, I’ve been faced with a health issue that just won’t go away. I have always said in my life that all that really mattered to me at the end of the day, was my health. Because without my health, I can’t really accomplish much. You can have all the motivation and passion in the world, but if your body doesn’t follow, there’s sometimes not much you can do. My health has always been a huge motivator for me. Growing up, living with my mom who unfortunately faced numerous serious health issues, I always told myself that if I had my health that I would be invincible.

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Since I started running and training last year, I’ve had clean medical chart. No injuries, nothing to worry about, the coast was clear. I felt invincible but also reminded myself on a daily basis to be grateful knowing all that could change in an instant. And change it did, this summer. I went from working out twice a day to being told to stop everything, as I mentioned in my post earlier this week.

Instead of being down, and losing motivation to get better and to get back out there, this injury has motivated me EVEN MORE than ever to pursue my dreams and do all the things I love. It’s when you can’t do them that you realize just how much you love certain things, how important they are to you and just how positively they affect your life. Running and being active has done so much for me in the past year and a half, I can’t even begin to explain.

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Thinking of running again, motivates me every day during my injury to do all the things I can to get better. I’m dreaming of all the races that I can sign up for in 2017, all the places I want to run in, what I would wear, etc. This injury has made me so grateful for the fact that I can run and I know will give me even more purpose when I am finally able to run again.

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Until then, I’m practicing patience, mindfulness and keeping my head high, staying positive because I know that it’s only a matter of time before I wake up again and can finally lace up those shoes and go out there for a run. That will be one of the best days of my life, hands down!

Photos & hair by: Cabello by Carolina

What I’m wearing: Hyba Contrasting Legging (get it here), Hyba Performance Printed Tank (get it here), Hyba Striped Performance Tee (get it here).

This post was written in collaboration with Hyba but all opinions are my own.

Hello Fall!

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Making the most of the time I have in Toronto before I leave for my next travel and life adventure. I’ve only got one month left so I intend on doing all of my favorite things in the city before I leave for a little while.

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Just a few days ago I was walking around in flip flops and shorts and in the last couple of days, fall showed up. I’m definitely not ready to say goodbye to summer just yet (didn’t it just fly by this year?) but I’m happy to be able to dress in some of my favorite warmer clothes again.

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Having a good pair of jeans is key for fall so you’ll be seeing me living in my new GUESS jeans all throughout the season. They’re perfect to run errands around the neighbourhood before I start packing for the big adventure.

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Photos by: @Offner

What I’m wearing: GUESS Shape-Up Seamless Jeggings (get them here).

Salton Sea

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I LOVE exploring! After hearing so much about this place I finally headed to the Salton Sea last week for a little bit of exploring.

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We decided to drive around the entire body of water, stopping at different locations whenever we felt like it. The desolation is real at the Salton Sea. What used to be a resort area in the 50s is now almost completely abandoned. The smell of decay and strong salty stench is present everywhere you walk around. There are also an innumerable amount of dead fish and birds on the waterfront due to the water’s salinity.

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While we were driving around we saw a film crew shooting. The area is a renown location for movie, music video and television shoots.

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Over the years, many plans have been proposed to help rehabilitate the Salton Sea but not much progress has been made. It’s a truly beautiful place with so much potential, it’s sad to see that nothing is really being done to save this body of water. With its amazing desert location, I totally understand why it was a vacation spot 60+ years ago. A must-visit for sure!

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Photos by: @Offner

What I’m wearing: Reef Rover HI LX (get them here), TOMS Adeline White Black Sunglasses (get them here).

V Palm Springs

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Palm Springs is one of my favorite destinations to travel to in California. There are many things I love about the city: the architecture, the food, the surrounding scenery, etc.

I first started paying attention to Palm Springs thanks to social media. A lot of the people that I follow visit Palm Springs either for Coachella or for a quick weekend getaway. Staying in a unique place like Palm Springs will make people want to photograph it. Apparently, Canadians in particular, love showing off while traveling. A recent study published by Hotels.com shows that 36% of Canadian travellers admit to uploading photos to social media (Hello Instagram!) just to show off and 20% admit to checking into places on social media just to make friends jealous. I can personally admit getting serious FOMO when seeing people post about Palm Springs.

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Another thing I love about staying in Palm Springs is the incredibly food selection. The city being a major foodie destination, I am always on the lookout for hot new restaurants to try while in the area. According to the Hotels.com study, 60% of Canadians look for tasty food before searching for attractions and beaches when traveling. We’re a generation of foodie travellers so we are always on our phone looking for where to have our next delicious meal.

Using my mobile device also allows me to feel like a local when I travel. Almost 50% of Canadians will use mobile maps to get around and will rely on mobiles to learn the local lingo. There’s nothing I hate more than walking around looking at a big old paper map.

Another must when traveling for me is free wi-fi. In 2016, if a hotel doesn’t offer free wi-fi, I usually don’t even look at the property. 28% of Canadians also do the same, only selecting hotels that offer this service because being connected is key for today’s modern traveller.

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This past weekend I had the opportunity to stay at a brand new hotel that has only been open for a few months. The V hotel, located adjacent to downtown Palm Springs, is a sleek and modern hotel that offers top of the line accommodations with a cool boutique feel. There is nothing quite like being one of the first to try out a hotel. I did a little Unrooming video for Hotels.com on my first impressions of the room at the V in Palm Springs.

For more Unrooming videos, check out Hotels.com.