Improve Your Overall Wellness With Good Gut Health & Dulcolax

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Have you ever noticed in the summer months you feel your best physically and mentally? We generally eat more fresh fruits and veggies, exercise and enjoy the outdoors, resulting in a lot of natural Vitamin D. For many, the change of seasons into fall and dropping temperatures sometimes means ditching healthier summer habits in exchange for heavier meals filled with your favourite comfort foods, consuming treats with high fat and sugar content and a decrease in exercise – especially when Thanksgiving rolls around.  The result of these subtle lifestyle changes can have more of a negative affect you than you think.

According to the Canadian Digestive Health Foundation, poor digestive health can affect your mood, energy, concentration and ability to fight sickness. If more people were aware of all the diseases that develop due to poor gut health, I am certain they would make tummy health more of a priority. One of the first signs of trouble in this area is constipation. Yes, I know it’s not really a pleasant topic, but it’s something that affects millions of North Americans. Oddly enough, us women seem to be the most frequent sufferers, most likely due to the slower movement of food through a woman’s intestine, in addition to the effects of our hormones on the GI (gastrointestinal) tract.

Lucky for us, there are a few things you can do to help prevent constipation and promote good gut health…

1. Start With Good Eating Habits. One sure way to get things moving is by getting enough fibre in your diet. Ideally, you should be getting at least 20-35 grams of fibre daily. While the common misconception is that bran and other whole grains are the main source, fibre can also be found in the following:

  • veggies such as Brussels sprouts, carrots and asparagus
  • fresh fruits like mangos and those rich in pectin; apples, strawberries, lychees or pears. Raisins, dried apricots and prunes are also a great choice
  • legumes

Processed foods, cheese and other dairy products, meat and foods high in fat can often times make constipation worse, so if you’re having an issue these foods should be limited. Getting enough water intake is also super important while decreasing your intake of caffeine, alcohol, soda and fruit juices that are artificially sweetened.

2. Exercise Regularly To Stay Regular. Moving your body will keep your bowels moving too; at least 30 minutes per day!

3. It’s All About Your Lifestyle. Easier said than done, but there are other things we can try to control in our lives that can help with tummy issues like avoiding stress (to the best of your ability), establishing regular sleeping patterns, and adapting good time management skills to help relieve anxiety.

4. Get Relief From Dulcolax. Sometimes making these lifestyle changes isn’t enough and you require gentle, over-the-counter relief. Dulcolax is a product that I keep in my bathroom and I almost never travel without it. With factors like jet-lag, anxiety of public washrooms while on the road, contaminated food or water or simply dehydration from laying out in the hot sun on a beach all day – the chances of getting backed up are high. And I never seem to be alone in this preverbal boat…there always seems to be at least one other person who needs to break into my stash while traveling. Why Dulcolax? This little genius pill gives you predictable relief you can count on overnight. Simply take it before bed and get relief the next morning before you start your day.

For more info, talk to your doc, pharmacist or head to Interested in trying out Dulcolax? From now until the end of October 2015, get $5 off when you purchase Dulcolax and Dulcolax for Women at your local pharmacy and most major retailers across the country (English Canada Only).

Posted on by Sasha in HEALTH & WELLNESS Leave a comment

My Road To Recovery Diary Part One

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Road to Recovery Diary

If you’ve ever been injured, you are well aware of how tough the road to recovery is. I have suffered injuries over the years of course, but outside of my health condition, nothing has ever put me on the sidelines until now. Hearing the words “You can’t run” was like hearing I was sentenced to death. I will admit, a tad bit dramatic seeing as though I was only told to refrain from lacing up for 4-6 weeks but that really did seem like an eternity at the time. Plus, I was just about to begin training for a half marathon in the Cayman Islands in December.

This injury is a result of one simple thing. Not listening to my body. After suffering a second degree ankle sprain back in May on a trail run, instead of staying off of it completely, I continued to train for the Nike Women’s 15k, hike, cycle, paddle board, skateboard, mountain bike all while traveling working on projects. Overcompensating for my injured ankle resulted in a painful hip pointer injury combined with hamstring tendonosis. Rest with a solid recovery and performance program was my only option after sitting down with Dr. Jaritt Ptolemy and my Strength and Conditioning Coach Danford GomesAt the beginning of September, I began my three phase road to recovery program created by the guys at The Movement Academy here in Toronto to get to that Cayman Islands Half Marathon start line on December 6th.

Road to Recovery Diary

Phase one in September meant putting away my running shoes and committing to a strength training program in the gym three times a week, while getting electro acupuncture and facial stretch therapy treatments twice a week. I will be the first to admit, weight training is not my jam but I am willing to do what I need to do to return to running. With my crazy busy  work and travel schedule, it’s a challenge to find time in the day to work out with a coach and I am left squeezing in workouts when I can, often times at crazy hours. In lieu of working out with Danford in person, we are using a new wearable technology called PUSH that is designed to optimize my training by tracking my movement during my workout so Danford can analyze my performance and make the necessary changes to my program to help me get stronger.  He has the ability to monitor the duration of my workouts (both overall time and active time), the velocity output, and use key metrics to ensure my training is properly optimized. It’s almost as if Dan knew my true feelings about weight training and knew I needed something for accountability. To be honest, if I didn’t wear this band, there would be a high probability of some skipped workouts here and there. Training with PUSH takes accountability to a whole new level. Coach Danford can even see how long my breaks are between each set, usually predicting that I have stopped at some point to take a selfie or check Instagram.

Road to Recovery Diary

For the month of September, my rebuilding stability program looked something like this 3 times per week with 15 minutes of light cardio to warm-up:

Move 1: Alternating step ups on a box with 10 lbs weights in hand (12 Reps x 4 Sets)

Move 2: Inverted standing row with TRX (12 Reps x 4 Sets)

Move 3: Left leg split squats with 10 lbs weights in hand (10 Reps x 4 Sets)

Move 4: Right leg split squats with 10 lbs weights in hand (10 Reps x 4 Sets)

Move 4: Seated row with 40 lbs (10 Reps x 4 Sets)

Move 5: Deadlifts with 40 lbs (5 Reps x 10)


Road to Recovery Diary

With the development of poor mechanics from running with the ankle injury, I am forced to start from the beginning and learn to run. Not only does Dr. Jaritt help with my treatment and mobility, but he is also assisting me with developing better form. Learning the “proper” technique for doing dynamic warm-ups like A, B’s and C’s, and getting my legs used to running again by with doing strides and band sprints on turf has also been a priority in order to get me to a place to begin hitting the pavement again in October.

Road to Recovery DiaryApparel courtesy of Nike Canada Photography by Nathalia Allen

My patience and hard work in September has paid off and I am being rewarded with running again next week – finally! I know it will begin extremely short distances and slow paces at first but it’s better than nothing. Based on the requests and questions I have been getting from you guys on social media and email, I will be sharing my progress from now until race day here and will also be having Dr. Jaritt share critical tips that will be useful for any of you that are currently injured or looking to prevent injury. You can follow along on my recovery journey on social media by using the hashtag #SSRoadToRecovery

Posted on by Sasha in FITNESS, HEALTH & WELLNESS Leave a comment

Unlocking Memorable Moments on Janet Jackson’s Unbreakable World Tour With American Express Invites

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Janet Jackson Unbreakable

If there’s one thing I love about American Express, it’s that I can always count on them to help me unlock amazing moments when it comes to fashion, live music, sports and culinary experiences. One of the most sought after concert of 2015 has been Janet Jackson’s Unbreakable world tour, which hit Toronto’s Air Canada Centre on September 15th. Janet will always have a place in my heart and has practically been there for many of my firsts in life. Her Rhythm Nation 1814 album was the first cassette tape I ever owned. When the album dropped, she was the first live concert I ever attended, which happened to be at the same venue I watched her perform last week – The Rogers Centre, formally known at the SkyDome. Janet’s music was around for my first kiss, first love, first breakup and everywhere in between. She was like the older sister I always wished I had.

Janet Jackson Unbreakable

Having great seats to this sold out show was non-negotiable and luckily for my friends and I, we were able to secure our tickets before they went on sale through Amex’s exclusive Front Of The Line program. As a frequent concert-goer, this perk completely takes the anxiety away when trying to get access to shows in the city. This is just one of the many benefits of being an American Express Cardmember. In addition to advance ticket sales, becoming a Cardmember allows you to avoid long lines by using their dedicated access into select venues, including a slew of other advantages such as Front Of The Line Reserved Ticket allotments and Delights Special Offers and Experiences.

Janet Jackson Unbreakable

VaikenWearing a look courtesy of Vaiken

Out of all the moments I unlocked this year with American Express, this was by far the most memorable. The show was everything I hoped it would be and more. With 32 back-to-back hits including “Pleasure Principle”, “Escapade” and “Miss You Much” along with some of the most technical choreography executed by nine insanely talented dancers, the show seemed to fly by.

Janet Jackson

Amex unlocks moments like these for roughly half a million Canadians every year through it’s partnerships with Live Nation, Mirvish, and Massey Hall, just to name a few. With a wide variety of partners appealing to a number of passions, Amex provides its Cardmembers unparalleled access to the most inspiring events and experiences. Explore to learn more about some of the hottest upcoming events.

In case you missed it, you can read how Amex unlocked moments for us at the Oddball Comedy Festival at the Molson Canadian Amphitheatre here.

Posted on by Sasha in EVENTS, LIFESTYLE, MUSIC Leave a comment

Kristen Kuzemko Help’s Conquer Childhood Cancer on Two Wheels

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My site is usually a space where I share my own personal journey in hopes to inspire, motivate and encourage others but in a recent interview I did for an online publication, I was asked about the people in my life that inspire me. I realized that my list was in fact quite long, which is a blessing and then realized that perhaps I should start helping others share their stories.

Kristen Kuzemko is an amazing spirit I met through Nike Canada when I began training for the San Francisco Half Marathon. A Product Expert for the running category she was an integral part of my race preparation educating me on everything from the appropriate types of shoes for my gait and distances, how to stay cool in heat during 26.2 km’s and most importantly how to tackle the ridiculously steep hills of the Golden Gate city. This past summer we bonded over another sport, cycling. During one of our rides Kris chatted to me about all her volunteer work which I had gotten glimpses of on social media over the years but had not made the connection that majority, if not all, the causes she was connected to had to do with Cancer. Turns out, over the course of 15 years, Kuzemko’s immediately family had been faced with 7 different diagnosis of this horrible disease. “The summer I start running, I instantly knew I wanted to turn my passion into a way to help others. Since then I have volunteered weekly at at Sick Kids Hospital on the Oncology floor. This past summer I spent a week up north at Camp Ooch, a camp for kids who have been affected by Cancer and have challenged myself physically by participating in the NYC marathon, SportingLife 10k, The Sears Great Canadian Run, as well as riding my bike across Canada in 2012 all in hopes of making a bit of difference.”

Sears National Kids Cancer Ride 2015


Fast forward three years and Kristen is back on two wheels, with some other very brave and admirable Canadians to pedal across our beautiful country. With her job traveling across North America for Nike about 80% of the year, she had limited time in the saddle to train for this ridiculously long ride but Kristen knew that her close connection to the disease would give her the strength she needs to be one of the strongest riders in the peloton. I read up on childhood cancer in Canada after reading Kristen’s bio and cried sadly way too late for me to participate in this courageous journey. The causes of childhood cancer is generally unknown and takes hold of roughly 10,000 kiddies a year. Today, about 80% of childhood cancer patients become long term survivors and majority of them are considered cured. Sadly though, around 60% of those have long term impact to their health due to their cancer treatments. The Sears National Kids Cancer Ride will fund research and other programs to help improve the lives of children living with this disease.


Kristen loves to quote Ghandi and say, “Be the change you wish to see in the world” – which she says is exactly what she’s doing and kindly reminds us that it only takes one person to inspire!


My swoosh sister needs to raise $25,000 and 100% of these proceeds will be going towards funding research at the 17 paediatric facilities in every single province in Canada. Reaching this goal will not become possible without the help of others in our community. This year’s SNKCR is already in progress, with the ride beginning in White Rock, British Columbia and ending in Halifax, Nova Scotia on September 26th. There is still time to help give to this amazing cause. Click here to learn more about Kristen’s story and to make a personal donation. She is also documenting and video blogging the journey on For more information on the foundation head to Interested in participating in this ride next year? I will admit, I am…you can find more information on how you can make a difference on two wheels at

Thank you Kris for being such an amazing inspiration to me and everyone around you. Cannot wait to toast you at the end of your ride! xo

Posted on by Sasha in CHARITY, FITNESS, YOU SHOULD KNOW Leave a comment

Unlocking Memorable Summer Moments With American Express Invites

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American Express Invites

Not a summer in the city goes by without me attending at least one live show or concert. Some of my most memorable concert experiences have been at Molson Canadian Amphitheatre in Toronto, where I’ve seen some of today’s greatest acts perform underneath the night’s sky. Being an American Express Cardmember makes these experiences even more memorable by providing unparalleled access to some of the most highly anticipated shows in the city. The brand has carved a niche in providing unique dining, culture, film, sports and fashion experiences through their American Express Invites platform which includes Front Of The Line Advanced Presale Access, Front Of The Line Reserved Ticket allotment, Front Of The Line Entertainment E-updates and Delights Special Offers and Experiences.

American Express Invites


Over the Labour Day long weekend I attended the Oddball Comedy Festival, which featured a hilarious line-up of comedians headlined by everyone’s favourite funny man Aziz Ansari and comedy’s new “It-Girl” Amy Schumer. With it being the last weekend of the summer, the Oddball Fest was the place to be on Sunday evening, so naturally people came out in droves. None of this was a worry of course, because as American Express Cardmembers, my friend Christian of ChristianConfidential and I breezed through the dedicated entrance reserved for Cardmembers. No waiting in line meant we had time to kill pre-show, which we did in the comfort of the American Express Lounge. Other than the line by-pass, the Cardmember lounge is one of my favourite benefits. Here is where I often cozy up on the patio with other friends who may be attending the show, have drinks and pre-show bites provided by fave restaurant Barque. To be honest, the food is so ridiculously delicious; I am usually one of the last people to leave the lounge when it’s show time. With our palettes satisfied from the American Express Lounge, it was time to take in the show, and I do not think I have ever laughed so much in my entire adult life.

American Express Invites

American Express Invites


The summer may be over but amazing experiences with American Express don’t end here. After 25 years of partnerships with Live Nation and Mirvish, Massey Hall, Molson Amphitheatre etc. Amex is expanding their model to bring it’s Cardmembers even more entertainment and lifestyle experiences through American Express Invites, with value added elements that can only be accessible and enjoyed through American Express. And trust me, when it comes to access, nobody can come close to the experiences curated by Amex.

American Express Invites

Through my job and Amex Cardmember benefits, I have been blessed to collect a series of very special moments that I will remember for a lifetime. I am sure you would agree, some of our most memorable moments have come from experiences that have been designed exclusively for us – and that’s basically what American Express Invites is all about. No matter what your interests are, your style or taste, American Express has just the experience for you! You too can unlock memorable moments and have exclusive lifestyle experiences with American Express Invites. There is no better time than now to create epic moments and memories. Visit to learn more about hot upcoming events this year.

Posted on by Sasha in EVENTS, LIFESTYLE Leave a comment

Give O.B. Tampons One Period. Period!

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As a lifestyle writer and blogger I cover a wide variety of topics but my bread and butter these days seem to be within the area of health and fitness. Covering so many topics that are inter-related to these two categories, I was shocked when one of my followers asked me why I’ve never talked about the topic of menstruation on my site. It doesn’t happen very often but in this instance I actually did not have a response for this young lady. For the next week or so, I asked myself and a few friends if the topic was a bit weird to cover here and especially on social media. Silly I know, because periods are not exactly “taboo” or are they? I mean, making sure I have adequate protection during that time of the month is crucial for me and other women who are running, working out, doing yoga and a slew of other physical activity.


Our first experience with menstruation usually happens between the ages of 10-15 and for majority of our teenage and adult life we experience bleeding and potentially some other unpleasant side effects such as bloating, cramps, acne, fatigue, and moodiness. And as far as I’m concerned, most women, like myself, have probably spent several years trying to find the right protection for their flow and lifestyle, but still nobody has the gull to inquire and ask women what they use during their periods like they may ask another woman what facial cleanser or mascara they use. It never really occurs to us what other women are using until our little friend decides to pay us a visit two days early and we are stuck without a tampon requiring us to ask ask a friend (or a stranger in the bathroom) if they have one. Raise your hand if you have rolled your eyes when someone has given  you a generic tampon [insert raised hand emoji here]. I’ve vowed to never let that happen to me again so regardless whether I’m on my period or not, there are at least two tampons in my bag – which my girlfriends have become thankful for!

Give Us One Period. Period

So I am doing my part in break that cycle. I asked a few gal pals recently if they were satisfied with the products they use during their menstruation and 6/10 times I got a puzzled look followed by, “Not really”.  Funny enough, 40% of the women said they were satisfied with the tampon brand they use and take one guess what they were using. O.B.! I feel into the category of the 60% that weren’t overly content but I think we all could agree that we continued to use the brand(s) we used just because it was something we had got accustomed to.

This also sparked up some conversations of tampons vs maxi pads and I was stunned that some women still are afraid to use tampons these days. Not that there is anything wrong with maxi pads but with my active and busy lifestyle, tampons are just a better fit for me. For years I have been trying different brands that have promised to give me adequate protection, move with my body, perfect for when I am playing sports, blah blah blah. A few years ago I stopped searching for the “perfect tampon” and settled on one brand. However last month I stumbled across some advertising for O.B. Tampons as part of an interesting new campaign asking women to “Give Us One Period. Period.”  O.B. differs from other brands in that they don’t have an applicator so naturally for someone that has a moderate to heavy flow, I was somewhat hesitant to try it out. A few questions immediately entered into my mind. “How do I use it if it doesn’t have an applicator?”, “Is it going to be messy?”, and “OMG this thing is tiny, is it going to give me the protection I need?”

Give Us One Period. Period

I went away on vacation a few weeks ago and got my period the day before departing so I figured this may be the best time to give O.B. a shot. When I’m traveling, space in my purse/carry-on is limited and I also need the confidence that I will be protected while in transit. Not to mention while working out and on the beach wearing my favourite white bikini. Armed with optimism and two boxes of the brand’s tampons (one regular and one super), I headed to the Caribbean. Smaller than the size of my pinky finger, these tampons actually surprised me. Because of it’s size, they were super easy to use and were ultra comfortable. To be honest, so much so, I had almost forgotten I was wearing one a couple times. The design expands to fit each woman’s unique body. On the first I day realized early that I needed to use the Pro Comfort Super for the first two days of my period. With O.B.’s fluid-lock technology has grooves that pull fluid into the core for locked-in leak protection you can wear up to 8 hours – I highly suggest not waiting that long though. For the remainder of my cycle, I switched over to the Pro Comfort Regular, which is great for first time non-applicator tampon users or for women with a light to moderate flow. While on the beach and working out I didn’t want to take any risks and just stuck to the supers, just to be on the safe side.  Not having an applicator allows O.B. tampons to be ridiculously small making them extremely discreet. I was able to fit one into the pocket of my skinniest jeans and the tiny pocket inside my Nike running shorts. Even when my clear/see-thru makeup bag was pulled out of my carry-on at the airport security checkpoint, the couple tampons that were tossed in there went completed undetected by those around me – phew!

Are you willing to give O.B. Tampons a try? I’m giving away boxes to 50 lucky followers who tweet, “@SashaExeter, I want to give @ob_canada one period #GiveUsOnePeriod“. Contest begins today and ends Friday September 18th at 6pm. Winners will be announced and contacted on Monday September 21st – Good luck!

Head to to learn more about the campaign and click here for more information on O.B. Tampons.

All personal information will be used for product category and brand research purposes by Edgewell Personal Care.  Additionally, those consumers who enter may be contacted by Edgewell Personal Care with information, news and promotions regarding o.b. Tampons.  Information will not be used, released or sold to any third party companies for any reason.

Posted on by Sasha in BEAUTY, CONTESTS, FITNESS, HEALTH & WELLNESS Leave a comment

Clinique Targets Millennials For New #FaceForward Campaign

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My earliest memory of skin-care products was as a pre-teen seeing a trio of Clinique products on my mother’s bathroom counter. A three-step, foolproof system to cleanse, exfoliate and hydrate the skin that she swore by for years: It helped her achieve a beautiful, clear complexion. Fast forward almost 20 years and now the Foaming Sonic Facial Soap, Clarifying Lotion and Dramatically Different Moisturizing Gel is sitting on my countertop – talk about a full-circle moment! And something tells me there is going to be several other young women turning to Clinique’s iconic trifecta with the launch of its new global campaign, #FaceForward, featuring millennial megastars Hannah Bronfman, Margaret Zhang and Tavi Gevinson. Here’s a sneak peek:

Clinique has tapped these amazing young women, who have had extraordinary achievements at an early age, to encourage others worldwide to face forward – rather than to look back – while sharing their thoughts on achieving their goals, what motivates them in their respective careers and, of course, their go-to beauty products. What exactly does “Face Forward” mean? To me, it means not looking back. We can’t go back in time to make a brand new beginning, but we can start from now to make a brand new ending. Having confidence gives me the ability to look ahead and trust that amazing things are in my future. Some of that confidence comes from feeling physically and mentally strong, from living a healthy lifestyle and having beautiful skin.

Clinique Face Forward

Engaging consumers so they feel a part of the brand is integral in this campaign – which is only one of the reasons I was drawn to it, to be honest. Remember that saying “If I knew then what I know now…”? Well, Clinique’s asking women to share what they would tell their future selves. If I had to tell myself one thing, it would be to not let fear get in the way. Take risks. Try something new. Don’t be scared. Everything you want is on the other side of fear. Now it’s your turn… Make a promise to the future and put it out there. Post a selfie and share what you would tell your future self on social media using the hashtag #FaceForward and tag @clinique.

 For more information on the campaign, Clinique products, and to make your personal Skin Diagnostic, head over to

Posted on by Sasha in BEAUTY Leave a comment

My 30 day League Challenge Series: Healing Through Food

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Healing Through Food and The League App

Our society has a tendency to underestimate the role and value food plays in our lives. The majority that do think they value it, they do so in the wrong way. Technically, food is just fuel for living. That’s it. Nothing else.  However, for so many of us it’s become so much more; for pleasure, for comfort, to socialize, as a reward, when we’re bored, as gifts, when we’re lonely…and the list just goes on and on. Over the years I’ve experimented with food. I went from eating a high carb diet while being an elite athlete, to becoming a vegetarian and then slowly transitioning to a strict vegan diet. Why vegan? For no other reason than I watched the documentary Food Inc and it scared the crap out of me. I was also living in Vancouver and it seemed as though everyone there was a “Granola Grinder” so it just seemed right at the time, LOL. But then I entered a fast pace career working for the largest Tobacco company in the country (ironic I know). With an unlimited expense account, tons of traveling, while wining and dining clients, my health started to go sideways. It is not surprising that my kidney issues resurrected during this time and fibromyalgia followed close behind.

Nathalie Niddim

If you’ve read part one of my 30 League Challenge (if not you can read it here) you have a good understanding at the health struggle I had for the last few years. I owe a large part of my recovery to food. Or shall I clarify, the right food. After several weeks of research, I was astounded to discover how much food influenced my conditions, especially fibromyalgia related pain. After taking copious amounts of prescription medication for an extended period of time, my gut lining and intestinal walls had become putrefied. These little holes in the lining allowed for food participles to sneak into my blood stream, causing my body to go into defence mode. The result was a nasty mix of chronic joint and muscle pain, food sensitivities, skin irritations, yeast infections, crippling migraines and insomnia. In recent months I have started to see some of these symptoms creep back up so I am determined to halt them in their tracks with the assistance of my League PRO and Holistic Nutritionist Nathalie Niddam.

ELXR Juice Lab

The process of connecting with Niddam through League was ridiculously easy. I was able to check her availability, set up our initial appointment through the app and within minutes she had emailed me what felt like a million documents, all necessary though, to fill out so she could get an idea of my medical history. This woman impressed me. She did a ton of reading and gathered up as much info as she could and was able to provide me with an insanely intense program for me to tackle to get back to where I need to be, while still getting the right about of calories to allow me to train and prepare for my next race. The custom program she created was broken up into three parts. 1) a custom 3 day juice cleanse with ELXR Juice Lab, 2) an anti-inflammatory/anti-candida diet and 3) a gut healing diet.

ELXR Juice LabELXR Juice Lab’s “Deep Breath” water is a midday lifesaver. It contains coconut water, fulvic acid and chorella. It boosts red blood cells and acts as a reboot – giving you life and energy to tackle the rest of the day. Photo from Instagram @sashaexeter

I was thrilled to find out that a juice cleanse was part of the program. After two years of testing out every juice company in Toronto, I have finally decided to partner long term with one and I have chosen ELXR. People have differing options on juice cleanses and they may not be for everyone but they have proven to be a lifesaver for me. When I am suffering from a pain flare-up, I can always count on a couple days of juicing to immediately bring down the pain level. It helps give my digestive organs a rest, improves my sleep, skin and so on. With more juices per day I have ever seen in any juice cleanse package before (8 juices and 2 boosters), I did not get hungry or have one craving. To be honest, I was quite full and had to force myself to drink the last two before bed. This is actually a good thing. I have cleansed with other brands before and literally felt that I wanted to chew my arm off from being so hungry. After day one,  I was bouncing off the wall with energy. With the perfect combination of cold pressed, non-HPP juices, seed mylks, and booster shots, I actually could gave gone another two days. ELXR’s mantra is, “Let food be thy medicine and let medicine by thy food” and their carefully formulated concoctions are created to act as the following remedies:

ELXR Juice Lab Remedies

ELXR Juice Lab Remedies

I am currently in the second phase of Niddam’s plan, the anti-inflammatory/candida detox for a total of six weeks – which is no doubt the most difficult one. You don’t necessarily need to be a chronic pain sufferer, have arthritis or a candida issue to do this. This regimen is a phenomenal detox program for anyone trying to do a deep cleanse of their system. However, I will admit it can be a bit challenging for someone to do voluntarily. Believe me if I could, I would be scarfing down a big stack of pancakes and sipping on a flat white while I write this post. All the foods most people generally love have been eliminated, so I am bidding farewell to fruit (with the exception of berries), dairy, legumes, all sugar and processed foods, fermented products (salad dressing, condiments – basically anything that may contain vinegar), alcohol, most nuts and caffeine…welp! The list of foods I can’t eat is much longer than what I can eat. For right now I am noshing on lots of dark leafy veggies, berries, eggs, foods high in good fats like avocados, organic chicken, fish and homemade soups made with alkalizing bone broth. I have just begun to start experimenting with some clean diet recipes that Nathalie graciously sent over in a 35 page deck and I will be sharing some of my faves over the next several weeks. Below is an easy, go-to brekkie recipe of that I love to prepare. It’s so yummy and full of good fats and protein:

Poached Egg with Avocado and Sweet Roasted Potatoes

Sample Breakfast

What You’ll Need

1 Tsp of vinegar *this is just to help keep poached eggs from separating when you boil them. Trust me, it’s a life saver!

1/3 – 1/2 avocado, thinly sliced

1 small to medium sweet potato, cut into chunks

EVOO (Extra Virgin Olive Oil) for drizzling

Pinch of paprika, garlic powder and red chilli flakes

Sea salt and pepper to taste. *Nathalie suggests pink or grey sea salts. Natural mineral salts are nourishing and help balance electrolytes



1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees

2. Fill a medium saucepan halfway with water and bring to a simmer. Add in vinegar. Crack eggs one at a time into a bowl. I like to use the outer ring of a mason jar cover to help keep the eggs in place while boiling. Place the rings into the water and gently pour one cracked egg into each. To be honest, this trick will allow you to perfect poached eggs every single time. Let boil for 3-4 minutes until whites are set. Remove carefully with a slotted spoon.

3. Toss sweet potato with olive oil, spices, salt and pepper. Transfer to a baking sheet and roast for 20-25 minutes until soft and crispy.

4. Plate eggs, avocado slices and sweet potatoes. Garnish the avow with cilantro if you wish, spritz of lime and a sprinkle of sea salt.

I am going to chill with this anti-inflammatory diet for another 4.5 weeks before going into phase three; “the gut healing diet”. When this program is over, I plan to integrate a Ketogenic diet based on the advice and direction from my nutritionist. What was initially supposed to be a 30 day challenge has quickly turned into a 90 day one. For those who are interested, I will continue to post my progress, share info on the third step of the food program, recipes I feel you may enjoy and feature my favourite concoctions from ELXR.

For more information on League, to sign up for free and to begin to build your own league of experts click here. Details on ELXR Juice Labs original, organic formulas and to create your own custom juice cleanse, head to Thanks to my friends at ELXR, by entering the discount code “So Sasha”, you will receive 15% off your orders.

Posted on by Sasha in FOOD, HEALTH & WELLNESS, LIFESTYLE Leave a comment

How To Live A Happier, Healthier Life With The League App

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For those who have been following me since the early days of, you are aware of my health issues and part of my journey to recovery. But for those you have recently discovered my site or my instagram account, you may be under the impression that I’m the picture of good health. Hard to believe it now, but three years ago I was in a very dark place – both physically and mentally. I was struggling with side effects from a rare kidney disease, I had developed fibromyalgia (a chronic pain condition – which seemed to come out of left field), that consequently led me deep into depression. Trust me when I say I was in a hole so deep, not even a firefighter without a collar bone could pull me out. I was so heavily medicated for my existing conditions, that those prescribed pills created new conditions, leading to a vicious cycle of distress and illness. It seemed as though I was on the road to no where…fast. I was seeing some of the best doctors in the country for my ailments but I knew deep down it wasn’t going to be enough to get me back to being a functional human being.

Join LeagueA sneak peek of League’s all star line-up for health professionals

After several months of online research, word of mouth and referrals, I had assembled a team of health and wellness professionals and I was certain their comprehensive approach would allow me to no longer be dependent on meds and move towards a pain free life. This was something traditional doctors didn’t feel was possible. Amongst this carefully curated team I had an osteopath, nutritionist, reiki specialist, acupuncturist, chiropractor, headache and joint pain specialist, tai-chi and yoga teachers, a personal trainer and a massage therapist. It literally took a small village. You name it, I had it  and without them, I wouldn’t be here today. There was a lot of trial and error in the beginning. When you are essentially trusting people with your life, you need to have a good connection with them. The process of assembling this roster was time consuming and tedious. I remember often thinking that I wish there was some sort of database where I could have access to all the top health professionals in the city. Fast forward a couple years and the team at League has brought this exact idea to life and I have no doubt this tool can revolutionize the way we approach our health.

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League has the widest selection of health services right at your fingertips. Their pros are all hand picked, verified and ready to help you achieve your health and wellness goals, which can sometimes be difficult to attain on your own. How does it work? It’s actually quite simple. After joining the app for free, you can quickly find trusted pro’s based on where you live or work, to meet a specific budget or your schedule. You can set up an appointment, cancel and rebook; receive automated reminders, enjoy the convenience of automatic payments and even keep a record of your service history and wearables data all in one place.

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I’ve been relatively healthy for the past year but every now and again I have some setbacks so there was no better time than the present to try a 30 day challenge with League for myself. Also, after suffering two injuries this summer, a severe ankle sprain and a hip flexor injury, one of my main goals was to look for a movement specialist.. I turned to Amber Joliat, Creator and Owner of Misfit Sudio in Toronto’s Queen West neighbourhood, to help open up my hip area with a mix of Pilates and Yoga practice. Unlike any other pilates reformer class I have ever done, Joliat takes cues from her dance background to help connect each move on the machine to create beautiful, fluid sequences that resemble somewhat of a dance. Combined with her melodic voice, angelic energy and sun drenched studio, our 60 minute private sessions are pure magic. I had no idea the severity of the injury until I compared the left side of my lower body to my right in a series of exercises I was lead through by Amber. It was clear during our first session that this is going to be a lengthy process so I am attempting to accelerate it by also seeing League expert Daniel Kocmiel for Facial Stretch Therapy. Unlike regular stretching that attempts to isolate and stretch specific muscles, FST targets facia, the connective tissue found in and around the joints. During my sessions with Daniel, he gently pulls then moves my legs and hips in a smooth motion while being strapped to a massage table. Here he removes pressure between joints, releasing a lubricating fluid and improving flexibility of my surrounding muscles. The below video is an excellent example of what my sessions with Kocmiel look like:

Photos by Nathalia Allen
As long and painful this process may be, I am dedicated to stay the course in order to get me where I need to be. For the remainder of my League program I will also be doing an extreme overhaul of my nutritional diet with the help of League expert and Holistic Nutritionist Nathalie Niddam. Stay tuned to find out how I am decreasing my fibro related pain with the help of a juice cleanse with Elxr Juice Lab and anti-inflammatory diet developed by Niddam. For more information on League and sign up for your free account to get started head to
Posted on by Sasha in FITNESS, HEALTH & WELLNESS Leave a comment

2015 GMC Canyon Stampede Adventure

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I have always considered myself a savvy traveler but found it a bit odd that I have galavanted all over the world without discovering all the beauty Canada has to offer. This summer all of that changed with the opportunity to hit the road again with General Motors and some friends to explore Alberta with the all new GMC Canyon. This trip was a unique dichotomy, where we got to experience working ranch life in Lundbreck and finished our adventure taking in the largest outdoor festival in the world…the Calgary Stampede.





In an effort for our group to both bond with each other and our set of wheels for the trip, we flew from Toronto to Calgary and connected to Lethbridge. There we jumped into a fleet of black GMC Canyon’s to make the trek to Lundbrek, one of the sunniest and flattest places in the country, where we gladly called Sierra West Ranch our temporary home. Probably as remote as you can get in the province, owners Randy and Ginny Donahue affectionately say its “where the pavement ends and the west begins.” The two, who are sweeter than strawberry-rhubarb pie, have a long history in rodeo, riding and of course ranching, which was a the perfect precursor to Stampede. The ranch, nestled among the scenic foothills, was everything I imagined and more. We each were blessed with our own rustic accommodations but us gals decided it would be much more fun to have a slumber party in Sierra West’s loft style log cabin – the largest on the entire property.







Our crew dove head first into our cowboy/cowgirl duties. Learning the ins and outs of ranching, roping cattle and spending tons of time with the beautiful horses. Time spent on social media and our laptops was replaced with cozy bonfires, late night chats and live music played by a real-life cowboy. Although life on the ranch was pretty amazing, I would be lying if I said we didn’t miss being dialled in to what was going on in the “real world” on Instagram and Twitter. Our social media obsessed group was pretty lucky being able to use the 4G LTE wifi from our convoy of pick-up trucks. After a taste of the simple life in Lundbrek, it was time to get behind the wheel of our trucks and continue on with our Prairie adventure. Our first stop on route to Calgary was in Turner Valley, a small town with a rich history in oil and gas in Alberta, to check out Eau Claire Distillery. Alberta is home to the best grain and they harvest for spirits all over the world, so it’s only a matter of time they got into the craft spirits game. Most have heard of “Farm to Table” in the culinary world and Eau Claire is now making “Grain to Glass” something to talk about by producing artisanal, small batched, craft spirits. It seemed as though our tasting began one minute after the legal time to start drinking and over an hour we got schooled on Turner Valley’s checkered history while sipping on single malt & rye whiskey, premium vodkas, London style dry gin, and specialty blends.

GMC Canyon Experience

We were welcomed to Calgary with a hail storm. Yes…in July. It was the craziest thing I ever seen because the temperature had been above 30 degrees celsius for days. Outside of the Hotel Arts, we sought refuge in our trusted Canyon; using the truck’s wifi to snapchat this freak of nature to our friends back in Toronto.  For some reason we decided to put our luggage in the roomy second row of the truck, instead of the bed and that probably was the most intelligent decision we made all day. Funny enough, there’s a well known saying around Alberta, “If you don’t like the weather you need not to worry as it changes every five minutes.”







There was a few things on my wish list while in Calgary. Quintessential things that I was told by my friends I absolutely had to do and see while I was in town. First on the hit list: go to the iconic cowboy hat manufacturer Smithbilt to tour their facility and obtain one of their famous white hats that they have been proudly making since the 1940s. Considered a legendary symbol for the city of Calgary, the white Smithbilt hat has been presented by the city’s Mayor to visiting dignitaries, politicians, and celebs like the Dalai Lamai, Vladimir Putin, Prince William, Kate Middleton and even Oprah over the last 60 years – as the key to the city. After meeting the owners and learning the history, we were each bestowed with our own white Smithbilt before heading to the Alberta Boot Company. The Alberta Boot Company just doesn’t just make any run of the mill boots. They are known for designing and manufacturing the footwear for the Royal Canadian Mountie Police and consumers who are looking for custom cowboy boots. Cowboy boots are as classic as you can get, so it’s design aesthetic will never deviate far from the basic style of boot. Most would assume that Alberta Boot Company’s production technology may have changed to reflect the current times, but we were pleasantly surprised to discover that the way they made their boots 35 years ago, is still the exact same way they are making boots today.




Clad in our western regalia in our pick-up trucks, our crew was finally ready to take on Stampede.  Attending a rodeo event in anything other than a pick-up truck would be blasphemy. The 2015 Canyon was tough enough for ranch life, chic enough for the streets of Calgary and still gave us some Aberta credibility. It has substantial power that makes it useful for trailering or hauling, but inside the cabin remains ultra quiet due to advanced interior engineering, while also being roomy enough for my crew and our gear. I am used to driving mid to large sized vehicles but for the others who are less familiar, they were happy to have the assistance of the standard rear camera to help them navigate in and out of parking spots. Truth be told, although categorized as a mid-sized truck, the Canyon handles more like a sedan.

I’ve heard many tales about the 10 day rodeo extravaganza, but was not at all prepared for what we experienced. The grounds, or otherwise known as the “Mainway” is a large version of a State Fair or carnival you may find in the U.S. Think – rides, games, merchandise vendors, and FOOD. Lots and lots and lots of food. If you were following along on snapchat, you were lucky enough to see what we were indulging in first hand. Everything was super sized and fried. Fried cheesecake, fried oreos, snickers, ice cream, pickles. You name it…it was there. Fried and delicious – as you can imagine but could only handle it for a day or so. We indulged in between catching all the action behind the scenes in the chutes. Frighteningly close to the horses, bulls and their ridiculously fit riders, I got a whole new appreciation for the sport. Every day at 1:15 over the near two week event, cowboys and cowgirls face off in a furious display of grit and skill, with each win building towards Showdown Sunday – the Rodeo’s main event.






While in the chutes ducking dirt and manure from the horses as they kicked their way into the ring, I took advantage of this time to ask questions about how elite rodeo cowboys stay in shape. This is something that has always fascinated me. Their time on the horse or bull may be short, approximately 8 seconds, but those few seconds are a lot for the body to take. These athletes are on the road for months at a time, competing in more than 100 rodeos per year, often sleeping in motels with no gyms. They squeeze in push-ups in tiny rooms or against their trucks at rest stops. During my impromptu chat with one rider, he explained that it’s all about strength and core, “Being lean is crucial. You don’t want to get too big. The bigger you are, the harder you fall,”

2015-GMC-Canyon-truck-shots-1Photos by Amee Rehal

Click here to learn more about how the GMC Canyon is refining the mid-size pickup truck and head to to learn more about the company’s complete brand portfolio. This experience was made possible by the amazing folks at General Motors Canada, and GMC brand team, in conjunction with Gary Sowerby and Lisa Calvi of Odyssey InternationalThe GMC Canyon experience is just one of many amazing adventures I have had with the GM crew. In case you missed it, make sure to catch my Chevrolet Colorado experience in Sqaumish, British Columbia here.

Posted on by Sasha in AUTOMOTIVE, LIFESTYLE, TRAVEL Leave a comment
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