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On this Hallow’s Eve I wanted to shed light and honor today’s modern time witches that are among us; living their truth as strong, peaceful and magical women. Although witches are mostly known as the iconic Halloween character; usually dressed in black with a pointy hat, green skin and flying on a broom stick across the full moon I am here to tell you witches are so much more than a Halloween cliche!

Here’s some very brief history:

Most stereotypes come from the western culture but witchcraft has existed around the world and throughout history in Asian, African and many Native American societies.

Witches were blamed for storms, deaths, accidents, diseases and many other bad things. Witches were typically unmarried, middle aged woman between the ages of 20 and 30 years old. (average life span was 50 years old) She was thought to have received her powers by signing a deal with the devil and he would leave his mark as proof in the form of a mole, birthmark or scar.  It was also believed that the witch would travel with a familiar; which was thought to be a demon in disguise aiding in her bidding; this demon would take on the form of an animal, such as a goat or a cow, but most commonly a black cat.

When witches go riding and black cats are seen the moon laughs and whispers, tis near Halloween.”

If accused of witchcraft she could be summoned to an identity test where she would be pushed off a cliff. If she was a witch she would fly away and if she was not she would die an honorable death. But more often than not, if presumed to be a witch she was burned at the stake. It is estimated that between the 14th and 16th century there was over 100,000 people accused of witchcraft. Although a few men and children were killed it’s been said that at least 90% of the 50,000 + executed were women. Including 20 during the famous witch trials that took place February 1692 and May 1693 in Salem Massachusetts. 19 were hung and 1 was crushed to death.

Not every witch lives in Salem.”

Did you know in today’s modern time, witches still exist?  The modern form of witchcraft known as Wicca was founded in England in the 1950’s. Its members worship nature, and a female goddess. They take an oath to do no harm with their magic. Contrary to many beliefs Wicca is a very peaceful, harmonious and balanced way of life which promotes oneness with the divine and all which exists. There are now more than 400,000 Wiccans in the United States.  But you probably won’t recognize them walking in the streets, since they don’t wear pointy hats or have green skin.

Bow down to all the amazing witches in your life! Today is the day to celebrate them! Happy Halloween Witches xo

Based on what you learned today, do you think you have been accused of witchcraft? Take this test to find out!

 

Oxygen Yoga and FitnessFall has officially hit the west coast; torrential downpours and gusty winds are likely to be with us for the next five months. After only two days of darkness my body was desperate for some heat and since I can’t just hop a flight to Hawaii I decided on the next best thing; a workout at Oxygen Hot Yoga & Fitness.  The Kitsilano location opened up few blocks away from my place, so I decided to go try a class.

Oxygen Hot Yoga & Fitness is not a typically yoga studio. First of all,  the studios are heated with far infrared heat which has extraordinary heath benefits such as; improves your immune system, reduces toxins and wast minerals, helps reduce stress, burns extra calories and helps control weight gain. It’s also been proven to help diminish cellulite and improve skin tone, plus can strengthen the cardiovascular system, relieve pain from arthritis, sprains, strains and over worked muscles.

You can indulge in a wide variety of yoga classes such as “Hot Yoga Rise & Shine”  – Mix sun salutations, balance poses, standing poses with strengthening poses and deep stretches. Early morning yoga is a great way to center yourself, listen to your body and set an intention. But if you’re looking for something more powerful, I welcome you to try one of the many fitness classes such as “Hot Cardio Fusion” –  A intense cardio party that helps keep your heart healthy and burn fat.  View the full schedule

The Oxygen Yoga & Fitness mantra is “I Love My Life” which is written all over the studio and  the fitness instructors have you recite it at the end of every single class; expect nothing but good. positive and friendly vibes! The room is hot approx 30 degrees and the lights are usually dimed. If you’re in a yoga class the mood is calm and meditative but in the fitness classes  you can expect loud music and very high energy! You’ll need your  yoga mat, a yoga towel, a face towel and WATER! Be prepared to SWEAT A LOT!

“No one has ever drowned in sweat.” – Lou Holtz

I hadn’t been to a “hot class” since February of this year,  so I decided to looked up my sign in records at the Olympic Village/Fairview location from February 2016 to end February 2017. I attended 155 classes (13 classes per month or 3.5 classes per week for a year). WOWZA! So I thought it best to ease the hot classes back into my fitness schedule this week.

Monday October 16th 7:30 pm – Combo at Kondi 30 minutes of a total body TRX workout to strengthen and tone and 30 minutes of Callanetics to lengthen and tighten your muscles.
Tuesday October 17th 6:30 pm Oxygen Hot Yang/Ying Yoga lead by Sandra: first class back and forgot how HAWWWT it get’s in there.  The yoga teacher was friendly and had a meditative voice; this much needed deep stretch was painful yet ohhhh so good!
Wednesday October 18th 7:15 pm TRX class at Kondi is a core-focused workout which uses your own body weight and angle to determine the difficulty.
Thursday October 19th 6:30 pm Oxygen Hot Fast and Furious Fusion Challenge Level 2/3 with Holly. This class was kickass ! One hour of non-stop heart pumping cardio and strength training! I felt amazing after! This class confirmed I’d to signing up again!
Friday October 20th – Rest day
Saturday October 21st 11:15 am – Combo Kondi 30 minutes of a total body TRX workout to strengthen and tone and 30 minutes of Callanetics to lengthen and tighten your muscles.
NFL Sunday October 22nd – 4:30 pm 6km hilly run
Monday October 23rd 6:30 pm Oxygen Hot Power Core with Lindsey!! One of my favorite teacher’s from the Fairview location.  This class ABS-olutely rocked!!!  This class incorporates yoga, weights, resistance training and cardio into a fast paced heart pumping core blasting session!

Having only been back for a week, I can already see and feel the benefits of combining my fitness routine in the far infrared heat. My body leans out and builds muscle so much faster, my skin is glowing, I push myself to my physical limit in each session and I’ve been sleeping like a baby! Plus working out in the heat is a good way to prepare for the outdoor workouts I will be doing on my luxury fitness retreat in Costa Rica. Not to mention, all my fitness needs are met under on roof with classes ranging from yoga, barre, cardio, core, strengthening and more!

“I will make sweat my best accessory, I will run harder than my mascara.”

If you’re a Vancouverite, Oxygen Yoga & Fitness is a must! Especially in the winter months! But don’t take my word for it, for only $10.00 you can try it yourself for a week or for $49.00 have unlimited access for a month. With 35 locations in British Columbia and 11 more opening soon there’s sure to be a studio near you!

Have you tried Oxygen Yoga & Fitness? What’s your favorite local studio these days?

Leave a comment below!

Namaste xo

 

There’s still so much juicy goodness ahead of me in 2017 but I’m excited about the New Year already! Fitness resolutions aside this coming January is special because it’s my big 4-0 and to celebrate I’m going to a surf, sand and fitness sanctuary! Words can’t express how thrilled I am about the @fitandflygirl fitness retreat located in a private luxury villa in Tamarindo, Costa Rica. This really is how every female fitness fanatic should start her new year’s fitness journey!

Upon arrival I’ll be escorted to my private room in the 8,000 square foot Villa of Don Vito which has 24/7 concierge service; daily housekeeping; a full-time caretaker, pool keeper, and gardener; and a private chef who will prepare all the healthy and delicious meals during the retreat.   I’ll get to meet to all other fabulous ladies and then receive a one-on-one consultation with fitness professional to discuss my fitness goals and perform a short physical assessment.

Every day I will be challenged to a group workout lead by @bodybyhannah. Hannah is one-of-a-kind personal trainer focused on taking a personalized approach to building a strong body and strong mind. Daily yoga sessions and self-development workshops are also scheduled.

Travel + Leisure magazine has named Tamarindo as one of Costa Rica’s “Best Girlfriend Getaways.”

I can’t wait for  all the additional fitness adventures; surf lessons, horseback riding, rappelling and zip lining.

I get to indulge in mud bathing, a guided meditation in the world’s largest labyrinth and two spa treatments. (1 treatment included in the price)

There will also be plenty of free time to get to know the ladies, hang out at the beach, catch up on some reading, go shopping in town, as well as have a special dinning experience in the private outdoor groundsof La Senda with the group.

This will truly be an epic start 2018 and launch my fortiest year on a fit and soulful path!

To learn more about this luxury fitness retreat and other amazing destinations please visit FITNESS RETREATS