Monday, 30 November 2015

Winter Fitness Classes in Edmonton!!

January is the perfect time to recommit to your health by registering for a fitness program that will keep you motivated through the cold and dark winter months in our beautiful northern city! Fit Your Life offers fitness classes for women of all stages of life and will challenge you to be the healthiest version of yourself in 2016! Come check out our prenatal-specific, postnatal baby-friendly, and women's only bootcamp-style classes!

By registering for one of our Mom & Me Fit, Prenatal Fit, or Fit Bootcamp sessions, you are treating yourself to six weeks of fun & sweaty workouts, motivating emails, weekly challenges, and meeting some beautiful and likeminded women! For more details on the classes, click links attached to each class name above. 

Get ready women of Edmonton! 2016 is going to be amazing!!

6-week session = $85 (one class per week)
Double-up = $150 (pair up any two classes per week!)

Wednesday, 18 November 2015

Being active while pregnant - The benefits for you and your baby

Pregnancy is such a special time, as you grow a new life inside your body. Both you and your child are constantly changing during each stage of development. Being pregnant is natural for a woman - it’s one of the most beautiful things that your body is made to do. Yet, when it comes to engaging in physical activity and exercise during pregnancy, many women are unsure what they can or should be doing. Some worry they might harm the baby or injure themselves while exercising. These concerns are only natural. But, thankfully, the human body is designed to move and pregnant bodies are no different.

Prenatal fitness specialists can offer fun, safe and effective exercise routines - tailored to meet your specific needs. These professionals will modify exercises for you, throughout each trimester, as baby grows and shifts in your body.

In uncomplicated pregnancies, women are encouraged to participate in physical activity – even if they don’t have a previous fitness routine. Regardless of your fitness level before becoming pregnant, there is never a better time for you to commit to your own health.

The benefits of staying physically active throughout pregnancy – for you and your baby – are incredible.

My top 5 reasons for staying active while pregnant :

1. Improved mental and emotional preparation for giving birth

Increased psychological and emotional health during pregnancy and into the postpartum period are huge benefits of staying active throughout your pregnancy.

Thinking of labour and birth often brings on feelings of fear and doubt for many women. Why? Perhaps they doubt in their body’s ability or are scared of things they’ve heard, read, or previously experienced.

Imagine you registered for a marathon nine months from today. What if you never laced up your running shoes and went for a run in those nine months leading up to the race. How prepared would you feel? Of course you would have feelings of self-doubt and fear. You wouldn’t feel ready. Labour is one of the most emotionally demanding days of your life!

Although there are certain elements of childbirth that are beyond your control, there is no doubt that exercise, breathing, and visualization techniques develop confidence in your body’s ability, which can decrease or eliminate fear and doubt.

2. Better physical preparation for and recovery from delivery

Learning how to properly engage through the core and pelvic floor are some of the most important exercises you can focus on during pregnancy. These muscles help you in the pushing stages of labour. Full-body toning routines throughout your pregnancy will assist you in achieving a deeper mind-body connection. This gives you the ability to move intentionally through labour and to use the positions that work best for you. Also, challenging your cardiovascular system during your pregnancy by safely increasing your heart rate during a workout, will enhance your physical stamina. Whether you have a vaginal, assisted (forceps or vacuum) or a caesarean birth, having a fit pregnant body with a well-trained core will help you have a more comfortable and quicker postpartum recovery.

No matter your vision for your child’s birth, having a strong body and mind will benefit your stamina, strength, mindset, and self-confidence.

 3. Enhanced health for you during pregnancy

Physical activity can prevent and relieve aches and pains during your pregnancy, including low back pain, which is the most common physical complaint during pregnancy.  A regular fitness routine improves your circulation, posture, and balance, which in turn prevents and alleviates restless legs, swelling, fluid retention, leg cramps, and varicose veins. Daily exertion on cardiovascular and musculoskeletal systems promotes deeper sleep and will help you be more rested. Physical activity also decreases the risk for complications associated with pregnancy, such as gestational diabetes, preeclampsia, and excess gestational weight gain. As I mentioned in #2, challenging your body through safe and effective physical activity also prepares you for labour and childbirth.

 4. Healthy habits during pregnancy carry into motherhood and promote healthy families

Being active and making the commitment to yourself is very important for psychological and physical health, especially in the postpartum period. Studies also show that active mothers give birth to babies of healthier weight and body composition.
Developing and nurturing active habits during pregnancy will encourage you to move, when it is safe, after your baby is born. Your postpartum recovery will be quicker and you will enjoy the benefits of postpartum exercise sooner!

Also, if you’re fit during pregnancy, you’re more likely to become a fit mother, an active role model and inspiration to your baby, family and everyone around you!

 5. Because your healthcare provider says so

The Society of Obstetricians and Gynecologists of Canada and the Canadian Society of Exercise Physiology published guidelines for exercise during pregnancy and postpartum. In uncomplicated pregnancies, healthcare providers encourage safe and effective fitness routines. As mentioned earlier, a fitness professional who specializes in pregnancy is able to provide you with exercises that will provide you with all the benefits listed above.

Prenatal Fitness Recommendations
- cardiovascular exercise 3-4 days/week (15-30 minutes per session)
- muscular endurance exercise 2-3 days/week (2-3 sets of 10-15 reps for 5-10 exercises)
- flexibility and pelvic floor exercise most days of the week

Keep in mind that the recommendations listed above are guidelines. If that seems like too much at first, begin with once per week, and you will enjoy the benefits immediately! Then, as you feel more comfortable and make the time, you can increase your physical activity.

Consult your physician
Talk to your healthcare provider about introducing a fitness routine, first. If they advise you against physical activity during your pregnancy, please follow this recommendation.

About the author
Kellie is a Registered Nurse, in Labour and Delivery, a Certified Exercise Physiologist, a Pre- and Postnatal Fitness Specialist, and a new mom. She has worked in the fitness industry since 2006, training women in all stages of life. In 2015, Kellie started Fit Your Life, which offers prenatal and postpartum fitness classes tailored to helping women during this special time in their lives.

Kellie, her husband, and their young daughter enjoy being active as a family - running, hiking, working out, practicing yoga, skiing, and biking. Kellie’s passion for prenatal exercise increased during her own pregnancy, as she enjoyed being physically active right up until the day her baby was born. Her recovery from caesarean birth was comfortable, thanks to her prenatal workouts, and she was back into her fitness routine quickly! Kellie strives to inspire others to make their health a priority and enjoy the journey towards the happiest and healthiest version of themselves. Visit Kellie at and follow her on Facebook at and let her help you Fit Your Life! 

Sunday, 15 November 2015

How to stay fit during cold winter months

With the cold winter months approaching, the thought of staying active and keeping fit can be daunting. The good news is that just because we live in a country that has beautifully snowy winters, it does not mean that our health journey needs to suffer. 

Why wait until January first for a New Year’s resolution? Start today with these winter active tips!

1) Try a new fitness class! This can be the perfect way to learn new exercises in a warm environment. There are many boutique studios in Edmonton that offer a fun variety of workouts: The Surf Studio, SpinUnity, Barre Body Studio, Sculpt Barre, Bliss YogaSpa, YogaLife Studios, and of course, Fit Your Life to name a few. Also check out Fitset, which allows you to workout all over the city for one monthly membership! 

2) Get outside! There are so many options to get sweaty while enjoying the fresh air. Winter hiking, cross-country skiing, skating, downhill skiing, and snowshoeing are great examples. An added bonus is to find an activity in which the whole family can participate! By getting your spouse and/or children involved you are leading through example that staying active is part of a healthy lifestyle and can be fun!

3) Find a workout buddy! Making ourselves accountable to someone else is great motivation if that is what you are lacking. When we encourage others to commit to a class or to a new workout schedule everyone benefits and it makes taking a day off a little more challenging! Choosing someone with a similar schedule, or who lives in close proximity is usually an effective option.

4) Buy new gear! New workout purchases are always a great motivator. If you are trying something new, such as winter running for the first time, buy a new pair of weather appropriate pants that you love and will keep you warm. (Thank you Believe Fit in Sherwood Park for this great outfit!)

5) Set up a home gym! If leaving the house in -20°C is not for you, it may be easier and more affordable than you think to set up your home fitness space. All you need to get started is an exercise mat, resistance tubing, a few dumbbells, and an exercise ball. You can slowly grow your gym, as you like. Find plenty of at-home workouts here!

6) Try healthy new recipes! Eating right is 70% of our success in achieving desired health and fitness goals. By planning healthy recipes for the week, you are able complete your grocery shopping on the weekend in order to have all the necessary supplies for delicious and nutritious meals on hand. Find my favourite recipes here! Also check out La Oliva Gluten-Free Kitchen for inspiration, catering, and cooking classes!

7) Stay healthy this winter! Missing work, workouts, and other events during “cold and flu season” can put a damper on your life. By taking daily supplements, such as oil of oregano and echinacea, taking a multivitamin, getting your influenza immunization, and making sure to eat plenty of seasonal fruits and vegetables (check out SPUD to have them delivered to your door!), you can keep your immune system ready to fight. Washing your hands and using alcohol-based sanitizers frequently will also decrease your chance of getting sick.

8) Take your workout anywhere! Holidays and vacations are not an excuse for taking a break from your exercise routine! Find a great “go anywhere” workouts here! They require minimal or no equipment to keep you fit wherever you are. OR, explore your warm travel destination by going for a run or renting bikes!

9) Keep up with your water intake! Even though you might not be as thirsty during the winter as in the summer months, staying hydrated is just as important. A great formula to show you how much water you should be taking in is: (your weight ➗ 2) = _____ oz in water EVERYDAY! Are you getting enough?

10) Write it down! Make your workout a priority, just as you add meetings and appointments to your calendar, do the same with your exercise. If we commit to an allotted time, we are more likely to complete the routine successfully.

Now it is time to decide what will work for you because when we find something that works with our schedule and we enjoy doing, we are more likely to stick with it. When we stick with something, we will become successful, and therefor fit your life!