Shampoo and Conditioner… On the go

I’ve had more bottles of shampoo and conditioner explode in my bag than I care to count… and I don’t know about you guys but, I’m just not adult enough to deal with it.

This summer I decided to take a stand against packing my toiletries four layers deep in secondary small bottles, ziploc containers, plastic bags, and even a toiletry bag, trying to appear pulled together.

For all my efforts leading up to this summer, I’ve had to clean or throw out bags due to countless failed attempts to secure a tidy, mess-free, means of showering away from home.

And then I met Lush Cosmetics’ Shampoo and Conditioner Bars.
To be clear, I have no affiliation with Lush, aside from being a regular patron; they aren’t paying me to say nice things. I’m just amped about having a product that has basically zero chance of exploding in my bag. 

I actually haven’t quite found the conditioner that’s right for me (in bar form), but, BUT, I can now shower at any of the facilities I train out of, with no stress about traveling with toiletries.

So, fellow humans, as I continue my search for the perfect to-go conditioner: What do you use to wash-up on the go? Any suggestions?

 

Photo Cred: Lush.ca

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Water Wonderland

In YYC a special, magical event occurs on May 1st every year.

The Glenmore Reservoir opens and all of us prairie-bound water junkies rejoice.

It’s water season.

If you’re looking for a fun, comprehensive workout, a great community, and some fabulous sunshine, Calgary Rowing Club is a great place to go.

Through out the summer the Calgary Rowing Club (CRC) offers Learn To Rows for the uninitiated, Novice (read: Newbie) rows, youth camps, recreational/competitive programs for all age groups, private lessons, AND a kick butt para-program. The Calgary Rowing Club is equipped to handle us all.

Rowing can be a highly demanding sport; the rowing stroke requires the use of 84% of the body’s muscle mass and high cardio-vascular output… but, it also requires technique and patience.

Sitting in a rowing shell as the sunrises and hearing the woosh of your blades moving through the water as you make your way up to the starting line is by far my favourite way to start the morning. Plus, workouts can cost your body upwards of 1000 calories -my giant follow up breakfast is my second favourite part of my morning.

Row-mantic imagery or giant breakfasts peak your interest?

Should you sign up for a Learn to Row, here’s what to expect:

  • All forms of weather. Rain or shine it’s time to get in that rowing shell and party! Bring a hat in either instance; you’ll thank me later.
  • People from all walks of life. As I touched on earlier, the programming at the CRC is built to handle us all. Don’t be shy! Come on down and give it a whirl.
  • We’re all awful at the beginning. Nothing is natural about sitting in the boat backwards, holding a stick in your hands and propelling it by moving your legs. Don’t worry about it.
  • A fun work out. Being new at something typically means that our bodies are super inefficient at it, which means we get a good workout just for trying something new!

 

See you on the water!

Wellness is not Separate

“I could never do that”
“I’m going on a diet” 
“I’m trying to eat clean”
“I went for a run today”
“New day, new you”

We are inundated with messages of wellness as other, or separate, from normal/average practices. We speak of clean eating as though everyone else is eating dirt, we speak of making exercise changes as if what we were doing before was absolute inactivity, we give up “bad habits” for “good” ones.

What if this forced dichotomy isn’t quite true?

What if real, sustainable wellness comes in the form of noshing on beaver tails while walking around the zoo?

Although we talk about lifestyle blogs, urban and rural lifestyles, athletic lifestyles, student lifestyles and many other descriptor variants of “lifestyle,” the idea of lifestyle rarely seems to encapsulate what, by definition, a life style is.
The pursuit of health or wellness is a component of many different lifestyles but, it is rarely (with the obvious exception of athletes) considered as an integral component of absolutely everything that an individual is already doing.

So, dodge that diet change and skip the guilt trip about the gym and start unpacking all of the ways that you pursue wellness in your day to day life.

For me, it involves not only my identity as an athlete but my decision to cook my food from scratch, my walks with my dog, walking to work, being obsessed with tea, gardening in the evening with my partner and running away to play in the mountains as frequently as possible.

With all that on my plate, it hardly matters (from a wellness perspective) if I miss a date at the gym.

Why Representation is Useful

The past week an awesome opportunity to compete in an international model search came up and, on the counsel of a friend, I approached my local coordinator looking for information.

For those of you who aspire to model, I wanted to share some of the red flags I encountered this past week and why, through experience and representation, I ultimately decided not to pursue this opportunity.

The first thing that I found really interesting was that my appeal for more information was completely ignored by my local coordinator. It wasn’t until I cc’d the CEO of the company that I was given a very short, useless piece of information by my local representative: It’s a bikini contest.

My original email requested details pertaining to image rights, the fact that I have a mother agency, and pay. All of these super important details were completely ignored and I was simply informed, as though I had some how lost my marbles, that it was ultimately a bikini contest.

The second thing that I thought was really interesting was that when I received an email from the CEO, it informed me that, due to time constraints, they did not have time to deal with my agency. This was kind of fair in my mind, I had been invited to participate on very short notice and, for sure, there was no time to sit down and chat.

However:
A reputable agent and scout should understand, or at least have a standard operating procedure in place for, how they interact with mother agencies. As a scout for an international competition, how could you not have something in place?

Third, I checked out my competition and inquired after the contract details for the winner. My competition was composed of wonderful, pretty girls but, for the most part, they were not models. By this, I don’t mean that they weren’t signed to an agency, I mean that, all though beautiful, most of these girls would not make many of the standards that agencies require their girls to have (I’m not arguing that these standards are for everyone but that they are expected in industry). The prize amount was not announced until the day of the competition and the sum was what I would make in less than a day’s work modelling locally.

When I apologized and wrote to both the local and international representatives from the model search saying that I would not compete, they lamented that my agent was hindering my opportunity for international exposure. My eyeballs just about fell out of my head.

Ultimately, if you want to model, I’d suggest that it’s super important that you don’t do things that make you uneasy. If you disagree with something, talk to someone else in industry about it. For me, talking to my agent was the best thing that I could do. He stated that, if I wanted to, of course I was welcome to take up this opportunity but, he asked me if it was in fact, a company that I wanted to take on as a client.

The answer to that became an overwhelming no. Someone who treated me so poorly and with so little consideration through out the application process, and who heeded my questions, needs and legal obligations so little does not deserve me as a representative for their brand.

It is ultimately up to you to decide who deserves to have you as a model. It might seem exciting to be asked to do a photoshoot or compete for a contract but, if it feels exploitative, I’d suggest walking away.

Pickashoe; I choose you!

Something I find really interesting is that, when ever I go shoe shopping, the salesperson often comments on the shoe that I’ve tried on.

That shoe, and how it stands alone, is not my concern. It looked like a pretty shoe before I put it on my foot. You already knew that it looked like a pretty shoe before I put it on my foot.

My concern is how it makes ME look.
Yes, I’m self centred but, really, if we’re talking about buying new pretty things, that’s really what we’re all going for anyways. No?

When I pick a shoe, my primary concern is what the shoe provides for me.
Do the shoes make my legs look longer? Leaner? Balanced? Top Heavy? Do I look like Big Foot?
Often, especially when people select boots, we are more concerned about the appearance of the shoe than the appearance of ourselves inside of the shoe. I’ve seen shoes take long legged wonder women and cut their legs down to those of a portly, adolescent, male. The shoes were gorgeous, of course.

So, I challenge you. Go take your shoes out of their closet space and get ready for some seriously honest mirror time. Here’s what we’re going to do:

  • Wipe off your shoes. These bad boys live on the ground; occasional touch ups and protective coats have been earned by these poor soles.
  • Try on your shoes with something that you think you’d normally pair them with.
  • Ask yourself, outside of colour, how do these shoes contribute to your appearance?
  • Follow up with: Is that what I want them to do?
  • If what your shoes do is different from what you had intended them to do, try pairing them with something else to see if it makes a difference.
  • If these shoes are still faux-amis, donate them.

Keeping shoes around that don’t help you out will just clutter your living space.
You’re a busy person, you don’t need that.

 

*disclaimer: if your goal is having your legs look like that of a portly, adolescent, male… then you rock those crazy shoes.
**disclaimer: there is clearly nothing innately wrong with portly, adolescent, males.