Tag: active

Fitness Swellness: Everyday lifestyle essentials at Mark’s

Marks Shambala lifestyle gear

I have a new category of clothes in my wardrobe, and it’s all because of my rescue pup, Billie Jean.

Until recently, my clothing could be broken down into three categories: my running gear, my actual clothes for going out, and my at-home clothes (which is essentially my pajamas–I’ve always been one of those people who put on PJs as soon as I get home no matter what time it is). Given that I work from home, this means until a few months ago, I spent a lot of time in PJs.

But now that I actually have to be out in public several times a day when working from home to walk and play with Billie Jean, I’ve found that I need comfortable clothes that are easy to get on quickly (especially for those morning walks, because I’m not an a.m. person!) and look presentable. My flannel PJs weren’t cutting it.

Fitting this new niche in my wardrobe is the Mark’s Shambhala line, which I’ve only recently discovered. Did you know that Mark’s launched in 1977 in Calgary (love that city!)? I only found that out now. That’s not to say that I’m a Mark’s newbie. I’ve shopped there since high school (although, in Quebec–where I grew up–it’s called L’Equipeur) and I’ve picked up sweaters, gifts, undies and socks throughout the years there.

Marks Shambala gear

Their Shambhala collection is a mix of workout gear and activewear, and the items are easy to throw on quickly (think easy to mix and match pieces of mostly solids with a few graphic prints). The pieces work for me because I can put on an outfit from the collection in the morning for Billie Jean’s first walk of the day, and then I’m super comfortable as I work from home. But I can also easily go for a run (or do any workout, but I just tend to gravitate towards running), or I can just as simply pop into my favourite coffee shop or pick up some groceries and my ootd is perfectly fine for any of these occasions. And that suits me well given my lifestyle (I’m typically juggling a lot of different things and just making it work with my schedule).

Which is like many of us these days, after all? Our responsibilities call for clothing that’s versatile. There’s a reason the active  look is sticking around, after all–being on the go is the new normal.

I’ve got on some of my fave pieces here but there’s a crisp striped tank that I think would be great for spring. I knew adopting a dog would change my lifestyle, but didn’t realize it meant a new day-to-day wardrobe, too.




Leave a Comment May 11, 2017

Fitness Swellness: Sport Chek #GiftOfSport $200 giftcard GIVEAWAY



THIS GIVEAWAY IS NOW CLOSED FOR ENTRIES. Congratulations to Damian O., the winner of the Sport Chek giftcard of $200! (Damian, please check your Facebook messages for more details about your prize, enjoy!)

Game buzz ring, are  you listening?

Is that not how the Christmas carol goes? Because I don’t think it’d be the holidays without including the #giftofsport!

Whether you know a fitness fiend or someone with the goal of getting strong and healthy in 2016, a gift of sport from Sport Chek  is always a good idea. The right apparel or equipment is essential not only to make sure you’ve got the proper form and are safe, for example, but it can help motivate you to getting your workouts done. And even more special about the gift of sport this holiday season is when you consider how much winter is tied into living in Canada and how sport and fitness give us all the chance to connect with family and friends and make the most of the cold and snow and ice. From hockey and skiing to running and snowboarding, yes! Winter isn’t time to hibernate for us hardy Canucks; the cold weather gives us a chance to get closer to one another (even if only to stay warm, brrrr).

Because the gift of sport is not just the tangible goods, say, the right pair of footwear or the necessarysports equipment. It’s actually the gift of becoming better, fitter, faster, healthier, happier, and of camaraderie — all of those good things that come with being active. It’s not just high-tech apparel, but a gift that helps each of us reach a new potential.


I had the chance a few weeks ago to tour the brand new Sport Chek store in Yorkdale Shopping Centre, and it’s all that and then some. As soon as you walk through the soaring oval entrance, there’s an interactive display where you can learn about fitness classes or events in the city, or find out more about the friendly staff (there’s some cheerful, welcoming knowledgeable staff here, such a nice change from this city’s lacklustre customer service). And throughout the space, there are screens featuring athletes or just wicked cool displays that make a pair of sneakers a work of art.

But it’s not all just fun; there’s a ton of opps for learning and improving yourself. Head into this store to get your gait analysed or you can test out your golf swing. Over in the ski and snowboard section, there’s a wall size display that’s interactive; simply stand in front of the huge screen and scroll and  point to learn about the products so you can narrow down your choices. Need to rest your shopping-weary feet or just waiting for one of the Sportchek services to be completed? There’s a lounge area where you can grab a seat and make use of these interactive displays to gain knowledge and get inspired more.


Honestly, you walk in here and you can’t help but feel motivated to get your fitness on. Surrounded by the top athletic brands, the store got me raring to go for winter running and a few ski trips I have in store this winter.

And because I want you to be just as inspired to get healthy and fit this winter season, I’ve partnered with Sport Chek to give away a $200 Sport Chek giftcard. Which you could keep for yourself, or give to a loved one!

How to enter? This giveaway is open to Canadian residents, and you can enter in four different ways (each way counts as one entry, so go ahead and enter in all four methods!):

1. Email me at healthandswellness@gmail.com with your name and mailing address (it just makes it quicker for us to send you the prize  if you provide me with your address off the bat). Please put “Sport Chek” in the subject line.

2. Twitter: Follow me on Twitter (@healthswellness) and  tweet:

I want to #sweatforthis with the #giftofsport  by winning this @sportchek $200 giftcard from @healthswellness. http://bit.ly/1PjEhxW

3.  Like the Health and Swellness PAGE on Facebook (at the top of the page) and then leave a comment on the specific photo about this Sport Chek giveaway — tell me what your favourite workout or sport is.

4. Instagram: Follow me on Instagram (@healthandswellness) and in the photo for this giveaway, tag a friend who loves fitness and sport as much as you do.

The giftcard is valued at $200 and the giveaway will close at 11:59 p.m. EST on Monday, December 28, 2015. Please note that this giveaway is open to Canadian residents only. The winner will be chosen at random. If I cannot reach the winner within five days, another winner will be selected. The winner’s name will be announced on the blog once confirmed with the prize winner.

Good luck! Here’s to keeping fit this season with the gift of sport!




16 Comments December 21, 2015

My crush on Marisa Tomei

So I’m kinda crushing on Marisa Tomei. She’s got a killer bod, a great laugh and smile and she’s just all around adorable. She’s also just released a new workout DVD, Marisa Tomei: Core & Curves and anyone that can complete 100 crunches like she does, smiling all the while, wins my affection.

Despite the name of the DVD, the workout itself comes from New York-based celeb trainer Key Son and it revolves around circuit training and developing the long, lean feminine lines we all crave. Marisa is featured more as just the girl doing the workout (versus being the fitness expert) so doing the workout is a little like attending a personal training session with my new BFF Marisa Tomei. And it’s kind of refreshing to work out “with” her — she gets out of breath (just like I do!) and checks in with Key Son about it being the last rep already (just like I do in my head!).

Core & Curves includes two 30-minute workouts and one 10-minute quickie workout, and let me tell you, these workouts ain’t easy. I completed each one without the Gaiam sculpting band and still felt it in my calves and abs big-time for several days afterward.

But if it gets me anywhere near the shape Marisa was in for The Wrestler (she prepped for the film by working out with Key Son), count me in.

P.S. Did I mention that I got a chance to interview Marisa on the phone? Stay tuned for my story to appear at www.ellecanada.com shortly!

2 Comments March 31, 2010

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