Thursday, September 30, 2010


Today’s post is going to be something a little different. As you might have been able to tell I’ve been doing a lot of yoga lately. Lots and lots of yoga.

What I haven’t told you is that I’ve found a yoga studio here in Calgary. My plan was to try at least three or four yoga studios before making a decision but I have fallen in love. The first time I went to the studio I knew that it was right. I just got that feeling. I loved the instructors, the studio and the other yoginis. It just felt right.

I want to say I’ve joined another studio but that’s not completely true. I first did a week long pass and now I have a month long pass. After this month is over I’m going to make a decision on my yoga future.

Since I’ve been doing some my yoga, I figured it was time for a yoga post.

First I’m just going to start with a few points that I’ve noticed lately when practicing yoga:

  • I’ve noticed that over the last few weeks that my legs have got much stronger but my arms and shoulders still need some work. I still find planks extremely difficult to hold for long periods of time. This is one pose I really want to work on.
  • Ever notice sometimes how difficult downward facing dog can be at the beginning of practice but half way through after a difficult pose (eg. runner’s lung) it feels like the best place in the world – love this!
  • I love balancing poses but I find it very distracting when the person who is practicing in front of you is moving too much or making too much noise. I’m not trying to be rude, I’m still not great at some balancing poses and I’m still working to blocking everything else out around me while practicing (especially balancing postures).
  • Finally I have one major yoga pet peeve. People who fall asleep during the final Savasana. Actually, I really don’t care if you sleep or not but please do not snore! See above (I’m still working on blocking everything out around me and the snoring is very distracting).

The second part of this post is I thought I’d make a list of my top three favourite and my top three least favourite yoga poses.

It’s always better to get bad news first right? So lets start with my least three favourite poses.

3. Eagle Pose – I’m not sure why I dislike this pose so much but the cutting off the circulation in both the legs and the arms at the same time just isn’t for me.




2. Bow Pose – I actually really use to like this pose when I first started yoga but now there are just so many other poses that I like and I find when it’s finally time to do some floor poses that this one is just tough on my lower back.



1. Camel Pose – This is my least favourite pose by far. Every time it is mentioned I cringe. This pose makes me exceptionally dizzy and light headed. I’ve been spending more time working on this pose and not giving up so easily but I still dislike it.



My favourite poses:

3. Happy Baby Pose – Love this pose! Not only does it remind me of being younger and more free but it’s also a great stretch and feels great on my spine after a tough yoga class.



2. Savasana – No I do not think this is a cop out. What is better then working your butt off during a tough class then getting to spend the last few mins in Savasana. Getting to feel every part of your body, what parts you worked and what just needs to relax. I adore this pose and don’t think yoga would be the same without it.



1. Tree Pose – My absolute favourite. I love the calm, steady, groundedness of this pose. I love starting a practice with this pose. This pose really helps to clean my mind and help me feel strong.



There are so many other poses that I love I just chose my top three to share with you today. Please let me know if you enjoyed this post and if you’d be interested in more like it.

I’m going to leave you with one of my favourite yoga quotes: ”The beauty is the people often come here for the stretch and leave with a lot more.” – Liza Ciano


~ Katie :)

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Pumpkin Pancakes

It’s late and I’m curled up on the couch with the hubby watching some evening tv. I don’t usually blog in the evening but I’m working hard at blogging everyday so I’m going to write a quick post now to keep up with that.

Yesterday I woke up with one thing on my mind. Pumpkin. Pumpkin pancakes. I used the same waffle recipe I’ve been using lately but I cut the recipe in half and added a scoop of pumpkin into the mix.

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I topped the pancakes with a banana and some maple syrup.

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They were pretty good but not much pumpkin flavour. I would use a little more pumpkin next time.

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I did enjoy taking pictures of the food thought.

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On my fun fall plate.

Lunch was a spinach wrap with turkey, brie, apple and spinach.

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Heated on the grill and served with the rest of the apple sprinkled with a little cinnamon.

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More food pictures.

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I’ve been loving all the natural light in the new apartment.

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I spent most of the afternoon blogging, twitting and yoga. It at been about 4 days since a yoga class and I felt sore and stiff. Not a the best class but it felt great to be back again and pushing myself.

After yoga I picked up the hubby from work and since he was craving a steak for dinner I opted for something a little lighter.

I went with an Amy’s Veggie burger with a little mozza and some spinach on a whole wheat roll.

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Served with some roasted brussel sprouts.

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Another great day of eats.

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Ok, heading to hang with the husband.

Night all!

~ Katie :)

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Lite Week

After a weekend of on and off eating I made a decision about this week. Over the last week or so I’ve been eating quite a bit of meat and red meat at that. I’ve been trying to cut out my red meat consumption so after this weekend I really wanted to make a change for the week so I’ve decided to go a little lite on my meat consumption.

I am not a vegetarian but I do think that most of our food should be coming from plants and sometimes I lack in my veggie intake so I’m going to change that this week. My body just really needs a week of light, healthy eating. Just a little bit of a cleanse.

Monday started off very well.

Breakfast was late so quite light. A piece of whole wheat toast with some Dark Chocolate Dreams PB.

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I thought this might be ok to hold me over until lunch but about 30 mins later I was hungry again so I grabbed a granola bar from the freezer.

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When lunch rolled around I knew exactly what I wanted – a snack plate. Carrots, orange and yellow peppers, cucumber, tomatoes (all from the farmers market) along with some hummus, pb, brie and mozza.

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Dessert was in the form of an apple with some cinnamon.

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I spend the afternoon blogging, twice and uploading some pictures to facebook. I’m very behind there. I’m good at keeping my blogger friends up to date but not some of the other people in my life. I actually haven’t uploaded any photos to facebook since the wedding last year. Yesterday I was able to upload pictures on our trip to Rainbow Haven and and My Friend's Birthday/Public Gardens trip. I’m going to try to continue to upload pictures as the week goes by.

One thing I didn’t do yesterday was get to a yoga class. I’ve been going quite regularly lately but I was still a little sore from the hike on Saturday so I took the day off. I do have a yoga post planned for this week so stay tuned for that.

Dinner last night was simple: Healthy Chicken Parm along with a Strawberry Spinach Salad (strawberries, spinach, cucumber, yellow peppers and some sliced almonds).

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I followed the same recipe as before but used bread crumbs instead of fibre one. I think it turned out better this time.

Well that’s all for now. I’m about to go to yoga, come home and make dinner then relax and watch The Biggest Loser.

~ Katie :)

Monday, September 27, 2010

Unexpected Hike

If you read my post earlier today you’d know that there is a big chunk of the weekend I left out – Saturday to be exact. I figured it deserved it own post.

Matt and I had decided that we would head to Banff again on Saturday. There was so much we hadn’t seen or done the last time. The forecast for Saturday was great 25 degrees here in Calgary but a little chillier in the mountains but sunny. It was the perfect opportunity.

After chatting about it we decided to head to Lake Louise first (which is about 30 mins past the town of Banff) and see the blue lake then we’d head back to Banff.

When we arrived in Lake Louise the first thing you see if the huge hotel The Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise.

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I can’t even imagine staying there. It looks back onto Lake Louise.

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Before I post anymore I’ll give you a little background on Lake Louise. It is a lake located in Banff National Park. It was named after Princess Louise Caroline Alberta, one of the daughters of Queen Victoria. The water is emerald colour and it comes from the rock flour that is carried into the lake by the melting water from the glaciers that over look the lake.

In general it is gorgeous. The beautiful blue lake that is over looked by the snow covered mountains in the background.

Here are just a few of the pictures we took of the lake that day.

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Even the grounds around it were beautiful (but I guess I wouldn’t expect anything less).

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There was even a wedding right on the lake that day.

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The bride.

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After walking around for a while and checking out the local hiking trails we found a 3.4 km trail that lead up to a tea shop in the mountains. I was just about lunch time and we though that would be a perfect spot to grab lunch. Before we started the hike we thought we should at least have some water and something to keep us going for the 3.4 km.

We we went into the hotel basement (which was full of shops). There wasn’t much in the way of food but we did find this little candy store.

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Filled with delicious looking goodies.

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Although none of these were going to fuel us for the 3.4 km hike we had coming.

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But in the back corner of the shop – score! We found Cliff bars!! We split a chocolate chip one along with some gatorade.

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After our find we headed to find bathrooms and while I found the women’s quickly, the mens was out of order so Matt and to head to find another one. While he was searching I took some pictures of the inside of the hotel.

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The view from the restaurant.

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After fuelling and a pit stop at the bathroom we were off.

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It was such a lovely day for a hike.

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As we continued up the path we realized this was not going to be nearly as easy as we had anticipated.

Luckily we had a pretty spectacular view to keep us distracted for a while.

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We even saw some snow as we got higher.

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Every time we though we were almost there we were wrong. But we kept on smiling…

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For a while…

The end of the hike got really rough. Between the lack of food, lack of water and not being properly dressed it was really starting to get to us (especially me). Finally, we saw the tea house.

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I was so excited! I was starving and feeling a little weak from the lack of food. It was almost 2:30 by the time we made it up there (about an hour hike).

We went in to sit down and found out something disastrous. They only took cash! And do you think we had any cash on us? Of course not so no food for us. We had to hike back down, tired, shaky and hungry without food.

Before we left we took some pictures of Lake Agnes, the view and the waterfall at the top of the hike.

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If you look closely you can see the hotel below (in the bottom left corner - above, middle of pictures - below).

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After taking pictures and getting some energy back we headed back down the mountain. It was a much easier trip back down and only took 30-45 mins.

After we reached the bottom we headed back into Banff for lunch dinner (it was almost 5 by the time we arrived at the restaurant. For dinner I had roast beef dip and onion rings. It was ok, but definitely not what I should have re-fuelled with after that difficult hike.

In total we hiked 7.6 km (it was actually about 3.8 not 3.4 km each way) and gained a 400 m elevation gain. The elevation gain wouldn’t have been too bad if it hadn’t been over such a short distance. The hike was actually very steep which make it that much harder with the lack of food.

What I learned about hiking:

  • Be Prepared – this is the most important lesson I learned from Saturday’s hike
  • Always have water – self-explanatory
  • Never hike on an empty stomach – half a cliff bar doesn’t count either :P
  • Always bring food – even if it is a short hike you should have something to have while your out. We hiked for about 2 hours but even if we had eaten before we left a snack at the top would have been very appreciated
  • Jean are great for walking – not so great for hiking. Although they really didn’t affect our food situation it would have definitely been nicer to be wearing something lighters and easier to move in

I know there are lots of other tips and rules for hiking (so please check them out before going out) but we hiked on a very busy and used trail and these were just some of the things we learned from our little adventure.

I’m going to leave you with a couple more pictures of Lake Louise.

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Can you see the snow blowing off the mountains in the background?

I must recommend if your ever in the Banff/Calgary/Southern Alberta area to check it out.

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Breathtaking is the only word I can use to describe it.

I hope you enjoyed my two posts today and Happy Monday Everyone!

~ Katie :)