Get to Know Me: 20 Questions!

Hello! I hope your week is going splendidly! Today is a perfect day (for no other reason than I want to write this and chat about random “get to know me” things) for a Get to Know Me post! I love reading these about other people and I find that no matter how well I know someone, I usually learn something! Grab your coffee, get comfy, and let’s dive into 20 questions about me!

  1. What is your middle name? I don’t have one! My mom doesn’t have one either actually, so I feel kind of special that we share that.
  2. Share you favourite subject in high school. Okay, let’s not all poke fun here, but physics and math were my favourite subjects in high school. I had a crush on my math teacher and I killed it in physics, so… yeah.
  3. What is your favourite drink? It really depends on what mood I’m in. Probably peppermint tea. Or a nice wheat ale. Or coffee. Damnit there are too many!
  4. What is your favourite song at the moment? The Other (DallasK Remix) by Lauv and Dallas K.
  5. What would you (or have you) name your children? You know what’s funny, I was a bit resentful when I was young that I had a “boy’s name” because people would always assume a boy was showing up to events and classes and it annoyed me, but now that I’m older I love my name and would totally name my future daughter “Alex” or “Andie” which are sometimes male names. I also have a weird love of the name “Lakelynn.”
  6. Have you participated in any sports? You know it bro. Soccer, basketball, hip hop dance (lol), swimming, curling, hockey, cross country running, cross country skiing, tennis… what haven’t I tried? I was in soccer for the longest and that the sport I dedicated the most to.
  7. What is your favourite book? I love the Harry Potter series. HP foreva.
  8. What is your favourite color? Purple. But, a very specific plum shade of purple.
  9. What is your favourite animal? Orcas, without question.
  10. What is your favourite holiday? Aside from my birthday (because the narcissist in me loves the day that’s all about me), I absolutely love Christmas.
  11. On a scale from 1 – 10, rate your childhood. ELEVEN.
  12. Do you speak any different languages? A tiny bit of french, but like Monica from Friends, I only really remember curse words and “Voulez-vous coucher avec moi?” which we literally learned in my grade 12 French class.
  13. Do you have any siblings? Yes! My brother is almost three years younger than me and he’s the best.
  14. What is your favourite restaurant? Currently I love Mosaic Cafe, on Whyte Ave, in Edmonton. I also love Parlour, on 107th Street in Edmonton.
  15. Who are some of your favourite YouTubers? For fitness, my current fave is Whitney Simmons. For lifestyle, I love Zoella.
  16. What are some of your favourite tv shows? Friends, The Office, Parks and Rec, Veep, Seinfeld… I’m most definitely a sitcom gal.
  17. PC or mac? Mac.
  18. What phone do you have? Well, based on the last question, you can probably guess I have an Apple phone. I have an iPhone 6.
  19. How tall are you? I always say “just under 6′” because I’m not quite 6′ but I’m taller than 5′ 11″. Aka. TALL.
  20. Do you have any pets? No, but there is a puppy husky that lives in the apartment building across from mine and I’m planning on stealing it one day and adopting it as my own, so there’s that.

I hope you learned a little bit more about me and I’d love to turn this into a conversation and learn a little more about YOU – my readers! Leave a comment with three (or more!) answers to the questions I posted above! Additionally, if there are any questions you wished I’d answered, leave a comment!

New weekend workout fave: battle ropes!

There are so many fitness tools out there that look easy… then you try them. The Jacobs Ladder was totally like that for me, as I would see people do it and think, “NBD,” but then when I hopped on and was dying after 2.3 minutes, I knew it was a lot harder than it looked. Battle ropes are another one of them. I find that people can make them look so effortless, then when you step up, grab a hold of them, and begin destroying your core/arms/shoulders/everything you realize they are SO HARD. The weekend workout gym tribe was a two-person crew this weekend, and possibly the best workout we’ve done. Last week after my friend sent me this video, I knew we needed to add some of these battle rope exercises to our weekend workout. We have done battle ropes as a cardio finale before, but we’ve just done alternating waves, which is apparently the “basic” battle rope move. This guys makes everything look easy, but TRUST ME, my heart, lungs, and body can attest that it’s not.

We actually only tried three of the moves. We did 3 sets of 30 second intervals and would switch off every 30 seconds. My friend does 30 seconds on the ropes, then I do 30 seconds while she rests… repeat another two times. We did three rounds of this, so essentially 9 sets each. I feel like there was an easier way to say that but oh well.

For our 3 different rounds, we chose a different battle rope move for each. Our first one was squats. Once you take 2-3 seconds to get into a rhythm of alternating waves with the ropes, you begin body weight squats. Because your arms and core are already dying, why not add the legs? For the second one we did alternating reverse lunges. I found this one easy to get into a rhythm with but it was even harder than the squat move! You really have to focus on holding your core strong for both the lunges and your form alternating waves with the battle ropes. The third move we did stand to kneeling and back up. We continued the alternating waves with the ropes, but as we did the ropes we would kneel left knee, kneel right knee, step up with left foot, step back up with right foot and repeat. You wouldn’t think it would be the most cardio, but I sure felt this one!

A couple of links to battle rope guides/exercises/tutorials:

The battle rope session was only 10 minutes out of our entire workout but it was a perfect way to finish out the strength workout. We both agreed that we like spiking our HR at the end and sweating a bit so that we feel accomplished leaving the gym. Does anyone else feel like if they aren’t breathless at the end of their workout they didn’t workout their hardest all the way to the end? It’s a total mind game, but I always think that, which is why I love those final cardio bursts. We sometimes do stairs, walking lunges, intervals of jump squats, or battle ropes. Here was our complete workout!

The rest of my weekend, aside from the intense workout of course, was pretty relaxed. I went to Cinderella, the broadway show, on Friday night which was really good, despite leaving the theatre in a freezing downpour of rain! I spent much of Saturday with my family as after the morning workout with my friend, I went for a walk with my brother then spent the evening watching hockey with my family and family friends. Let’s not talk about the Montreal Canadiens already being out of the playoffs, okay?

Sunday was just a relaxing as I spent most of the morning avoiding going out into the 10-15cm of snow that landed overnight and continued to fall throughout the day. I made muffins, did laundry, and eventually made the journey to the gym where I ran 8 miles on the treadmill. It was one of those runs where I told myself I would do at least 5K, then ran that and felt good to try and do 5 miles, then figured I might as well do a 10K, then settled on having energy for a solid 8. My legs just felt like they wanted to run and I made sure to take advantage.

I hopped off the treadmill just in time to  head home, shower, and wander back out into the snow to meet a friend at District Cafe. I actually ran into another friend there as well that I hadn’t seen in a while so that was lovely! I had a latte while my friend and I talked about everything in life that we needed to catch up on – it’s amazing how many topics you can fly through in a couple hours – I love those chats!

Oh boy, it’s already the last week in April! Where does time go? I better finish up this 30-day squat challenge and decide on some awesome goals for May! Tell me about your weekend! What was your favourite part? What was the last musical you saw? Do you ever try the battle ropes as part (or all) of your workout?

Happy Almost Earth Day!

I remember celebrating Earth Day in elementary school, how we would take one day a year to talk about planting trees and appreciating and respecting our planet. Based on the current environmental state of Earth I think we should have made all 365 days of the year Earth Day. I thought I would dip back to elementary school and chat a bit about how I’m celebrating Earth Day! There are actually a few things I’ve been working on and trying lately that have a bit of an environmental lens so now is the perfect time to share them! Happy Earth Day (almost)!

GARDENING

“So, would you go soil shopping with me?” I asked my garden-savy colleague the other week. She is a plant loving, green thumb wielding, experienced gardener and I am looking to any and all advice to help me start my first garden. I literally got overwhelmed looking at soil options at Home Depot. My dad and I built a garden box for my apartment balcony so I could try and grow some produce this year and I’m super excited. I am lucky to live in a city that appreciates urban green spaces and has the biggest urban parkland in North America, so I feel I can do my part to make my balcony its own green space and grow food and flowers.

EATING LESS MEAT

I get a bit of a mixed reaction when I talk about the environmental reasons why I don’t eat meat, but it’s only a small fraction of the reason why I’ve been vegetarian for over three years. It’s an interesting phenomenon to not eat beef in the land that literally prides itself on it’s beef (Alberta), but I personally think that even a decrease in consumption can expand the vegetables, beans, nuts, seeds, and fruits that you cook with and reduce the impact your food choices have on the environment. I think there is a balance to be struck. 🙂

ACTIVE TRANSPORTATION

It’s actually pretty wonderful how much money I save on gas, not to mention how much I have reduced my fossil fuel consumption, by being able to walk to work every day. You might remember my walks to work last year, when I worked part-time going to school, that were an hour long each way, and actually started as a way for me to get some extra steps and exercise. Now I have a brisk 32 minute walk to work and it’s wonderful. I love active transportation and definitely advocate for trying to use it as much as you can. Even if it’s a quick trip to the super market a few miles away, ask yourself if you can cycle there instead!

SMART TRANSPORTATION

Along similar lines, I’m actually working on selling my current vehicle in order to buy a hybrid car. I thought I would wait for the day, likely in a couple years, where cars like Tesla, Nissan Leaf, etc were a bit more budget friendly, but I think in the interim I would like to be driving a more environmentally friendly car. In circumstances where I’m not able to use active human-powered transportation or public transportation, I would like to have the next best technologically available option.

UM, A CUP.

I go back and forth between being like, “Yeaaah, probably don’t want this on the internet,” and thinking, “Who cares, this is a female human function, it should be talked about openly,” but PERIODS. I have recently transitioned to using the Diva Cup (a menstrual cup) during my period. The cup is actually THE BEST, saves you money, and is way better for the environment. It’s super easy and I totally wish I had made the switch sooner.

On that note, as my male audience swiftly hits the ‘close’ button on this post, I just thought I’d mention how much I LOVE Canada’s theme this year for Earth Day… Earth PLAY for Earth Day. The campaign is promoting outdoor activity!

“Because kids who don’t get outside, who aren’t stimulated by their environment, won’t grow up with any motivation to protect our planet. And kids who don’t connect to their inner nature through creative play won’t be as resilient as generations before them.”

My friend and I went for coffee just the other day and he was telling me about how him and his family just bought a house in the River Valley with a huge yard and he’s so happy that his kids are going to be able to grow up outside like he did. I was so excited for this because I too grew up with big yards, in small towns surrounded by forest and mountains and oceans and lakes and I think that is one of the foundational reasons I’ve grown up to love and appreciate the environment so much. Let’s bring back the thoughtfulness we gave Earth Day in grade 2 when we planted trees and talked about ecosystems, and let’s do it 365 days a year!

In case you’re interested, HERE are 41 other ways to be eco-friendly and ways that you can celebrate Earth Day tomorrow!

Do you have any awesome daily habits that are environmentally friendly?

What is your favourite outdoor childhood memory?