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Fitness Swelless: 5 reasons you should light up the night and do the Ultra Night Run

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The best part about running is completing a race—for me, anyhow. It’s a huge sense of accomplishment, after all of that training, to cross the finish line. Throw in some post-race festivities and that’s a winning combination. Which is just one reason why you should also do the Ultra Night Run.

Let’s get into why this is the race you should add to your fall goals:

  1. It’s the first year of the Ultra Night Run so you can forever brag about how you took part in the inaugural one. The race is happening in six cities across Canada including Toronto (where I’ll be taking part on September 8th), Vancouver, Calgary, Edmonton, Ottawa and Montreal. Find out about each city’s race here.
  2. There’s a 5k and a 10k distance. So you’ve got options. Maybe one of those is your preferred race distance, or maybe you’re new to running and want to stick to a 5k distance to get your feet wet.
  3. It’s a night run. These are more rare and hey, you don’t have to get up at 4 or 5 a.m. like you do for most races. The temperature will cool for the evening, and running at night is a different experience. Every runner will get an Energizer LED headlight you must wear for safety (but that’ll add to the fun of racing the course in the dark).
  4. It’s a chip-timed race. OK, now I know this race will definitely be more on the fun side rather than nail-a-PB type of race, but if you’ve got a personally competitive streak like I do, you know how important a race being chipped is!
  5. Did I mention the post-race celebration? After the race, you’ll get an ice-cold Michelob Ultra to toast with the other runners, along with some food and music. Picture a beautiful early fall evening, you’ve all got a runner’s high from the race you just completed and you have a refreshing beer in hand. Maybe getting to that party will push you to run even faster? Sounds like a pretty perfect way to party after a great workout (Bonus: Ultra is only 90 calories and 2.6 grams of carbs!). That’s what #liveultra is all about.

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I’ll be there, headlight on and ready to light up the night. See you at the start line!

To register (all runners must be legal drinking age, btw) or for more info, visit Ultra Night Run. Don’t wait too long to register, though, as the number of participants is capped in each city!

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4 Comments August 8, 2018

Healthy Swellness: 5 surprising things about AI aka adult incontinence

Always Discreet Boutique photo 1

I learn about how the body works thanks to the work I do. And after attending a session with Always to learn about their new advanced product (more on that later), I know a lot about adult incontinence should I or a friend ever suffer from this, I’m prepared with all sorts of helpful information.

That said, it is possible I do have friends who suffer from it. While it tends to affect older adults, it is something that young moms can suffer from, and a few of my friends are moms now. But AI, which is the involuntary loss of urine due to the loss of bladder control, is something that people often keep a secret. And I can’t say I blame them. No one wants to be known for not being able to control one’s bladder, but the good news is there’s a new, improved way to help you live more confidently with it..

How much do you know about adult incontinence? Here are five eye-opening things I learned that day from the people at Always.

  1. An estimated one in three women over 18 years old suffer from AI. That’s a big number. Think about it: if you’re hanging out with nine of your friends, that means three of you may suffer from AI.
  2. Adult incontinence affects not only older adults. The majority are aged 50+ but younger women can also be afflicted as a result of pregnancies. If you have a higher BMI, too, that increases the risk of experiencing AI, and conditions such as diabetes and MS also increase your chance of suffering from it as well.
  3. AI doesn’t only mean what you likely think it is. Before learning about this condition from Always and doing some research, I pictured AI being a senior, say, sitting watching TV or out at a park and peeing themselves and entirely emptying their bladder because they didn’t get the notification from their body that they had to get to a washroom. AI can happen in many different ways, however. Maybe you’re laughing so hard or doing some intense cardio and the motion causes you not to be able to control your bladder and you pee a little. There’s also a form called urge incontinence, which is when you have a sudden, strong need to urinate and experience some involuntary loss of urine. This is also called an overactive bladder.
  4. People hide their AI even from loved ones. I can see why women would feel ashamed to admit they suffer from AI. But I learned from Always that through their in depth research and interviews with AI sufferers that these women go to great lengths to hide their problem. They had women who admitted to lying and making up excuses in order to hide their AI from their grown daughters and grandkids. Always also discovered that two-thirds of women who suffer from AI don’t use an underwear product at all because of their embarrassment. And those who do use them? They hide away their AI underwear because the undergarments were plain unattractive.
  5. If you suffer from AI, you now have a new undergarment option: Always Discreet Boutique. Because of their findings, Always set out to design a product that would not only help one manage the incontinence issue, but also improve the emotional aspects of it. Always Discreet Boutique takes four key components and improves on them: The core of the product absorbs three times the amount of liquid than the amount of urine one usually releases at a time. In terms of comfort, the Always Discreet Boutique design features channels in the absorbent material that distributes the liquid so that the panty feels dry and comfortable. Next, the colour: a subtle pink hue with some decorative printed embellishments; this is a panty AI sufferers can tuck into their lingerie drawer as they do not look like diapers in any way. And lastly, the cut; the panty has a low rise and hugs the body comfortably, so much so that even in snug-fitting clothing, the Always Discreet Boutique underwear is not obvious, no pantylines!

Having Always Discreet Boutique can make a world of difference for a woman who suffers from AI; I got to witness the change of attitude in the interviews Always conducted. These women look like they’re ready to step out and live life rather than hide away with their secret. If you suffer from AI, you may want to try out Always Discreet Boutique; it’s available now in stores. It may be the confidence booster you’ve been waiting for.

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Leave a Comment December 22, 2017

Foodie Swellness: Delicious Olives from Spain

Olives from Spain 1

Although I did not grow up eating olives from Spain (I actually was probably an adult before I tried them for the very first time), but they’re now something I can’t live without. I’ll regularly crave them (coincidentally, one of my cats loves tapenade, she is so much my spirit animal!).

I don’t see how one can’t love olives from Spain. They’re so versatile, for one. A simple bowl of them with your cheese and charcuterie boards. Or add olives from Spain for a brine-y bite to your salads or pasta dishes (pasta puttanesca is a classic favourite!). Baked into a focaccia so that each doughy bite has a bit of olives from Spain. And what about chicken? On it’s own, a pretty bland protein. Incorporate lemon and whichever variety of olives from Spain you can find at your local supermarket into your sauce, though, and you’ve got one mouthwatering, flavourful main course.

The different ways you can enjoy olives are practically endless when you also consider that there are so many wonderful varieties from Spain. I’m not an olive connoisseur but I try to pick up a variety I’m unfamiliar with when I’m shopping at the market.

And did know they’re loaded with antioxidants that research has shown to be anti-cancerous, and they also contain iron and inflammation-reducing oleic acid? So many good reasons to incorporate them into your snacking and cooking repertoire  if you don’t already.

Next time you’re adding olives from Spain to your shopping list, some you might want to try out: hojiblanca, gordal and manzanilla. I feel like most people I know are partial to black olives, and while I do gravitate to them, I do love gordal, too; These large, fleshy green olives from Spain have a great bitter-salty balance, making them great for snacking. The same goes for manzanilla olives when it comes to snacking; they’re nice and round and plump and since its pit is easy to remove, you’ll often find them stuffed (think anchovies, peppers or cheese)—delicious! And hojiblanca? These olives from Spain have a slight fruity and nuttiness to them, which works well for stews and marinades.

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With the versatility of olives from Spain, I started dreaming of Canadian dishes where I could incorporate them, and bannock came to mind. Let’s face it, I dream of carbs so it’s not shocking I thought of bread. I’ve never made bannock before, a bread that comes to us from our First Nations. I did a little research about it and discovered that bannock can be baked or fried, and although traditionally prepared and enjoyed quite simply, modern versions include cinnamon bannock rolls and bannock breakfast sandwiches  Light and fluffy bannock with some chopped olives from Spain warm from the frying pan sounded like it’d be the ultimate savoury treat…and it was! Here’s the recipe:

Fried Bannock with Olives from Spain

  • 2 cups of flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • chopped olives from Spain to taste (I used about a ¼ cup of Hojiblancas)
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • ¾ cup water
  • vegetable oil for frying
  1. Whisk together dry ingredients.
  2. Mix in olives (I used Hojiblancas) and olive oil, and add water, until almost combined.
  3. On a lightly floured surface, knead a handful of times but do not overwork.
  4. Divide into 6 balls and flatten with your hands. Fry at medium heat in a frying pan generously oiled on the bottom of the pan until both sides of the bread are golden brown.
  5. Drain on a paper-towel lined plate.
  6. Enjoy warm!

Given the simple ingredients and method, I’m thinking this could be a great bread to make the next time I go camping or for brunch. Although, it’s not camping I’ve got on the brain now, it’s escaping to Spain I’m dreaming of!

For more recipe ideas for olives from Spain, be sure to check out olivesfromspain.ca

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1 Comment December 14, 2017

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