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Top running tips for conserving energy with efficient style and form

When I first started running, I had  inadvertently adopted a few poor running habits that zapped my energy and caused me to run slower. To get the most out of my running performance and to stay injury free meant developing good running habits. This is always the key to healthy lifelong running.

I was new to the sport of running and had picked up poor running habits -which was easy to do. Having a busy schedule  led to my  thinking that stretching wasn’t important anymore, and neither was checking the weather conditions. The ramifications, however, can be substantial. By not stretching all of your muscle groups after a run, you are setting yourself up for injury that can shelve your running for six weeks or more. And being unaware of an approaching storm or sudden change in temperature can leave you unprotected from the elements at the worst possible time.

Here are my top five tips for adopting a more efficient running style:

  1. Stretching is not only a workout in itself, it’s an essential component to running that offers many benefits, such as improving your athletic performance through increased flexibility, while substantially lowering your risk of injury. Surprisingly, there are many runners that still don’t stretch. Stretching should be done after a 10-minute warm up jog, and again following your workout when your muscles are warm. Hold each stretch for 60 seconds or do two sets consisting of 30 seconds for each stretch.
  2. Carrying your shoulders high and swinging your hands across your body are counter-productive and will deplete your energy, resulting in poor running economy. To correct this you should run relaxed with your shoulders low. Focus on pumping your arms front to back, and your feet will follow. This allows you to conserve energy, especially while running uphill.
  3. Give yourself at least 90 minutes to digest your food before running, otherwise you may experience muscle cramps or an upset stomach. Always carry a water bottle for longer runs, or choose a route where water is accessible along the way.
  4. Avoid clenching your fists, especially as you become increasingly tired. Keeping your hands relaxed will help you to maintain control without cramping or side stitches.
  5. Always dress for the weather conditions – especially at night – for safety. Wear bright, neon, glow-in-the-dark garments with lights, so you can be seen by cars, buses, bikes, etc. For colder weather, wear layers that can be peeled off, carried, and re-deployed as needed. Older shoes lose their cushioning properties and can lead to injuries such as shin splints.

Before going for that run or participating in an event I always double-tie my laces to avoid losing time in a race or wasting time on a training run. I also wear sun screen, even when running on shaded routes. Suggestion-I wear a running cap with brim that will protect my eyes all year round from the sun and the elements.

Hopefully by following these tips your experience will be that much more enjoyable in the long run. Pun intended!

Twitter: @christineruns

YouTube – runwithit

Galia Lahav Fashion House: Art in fashion form

For the first in a long time, I do not have a number of weddings to attend this upcoming spring and summer. Usually, my mailbox is full with invites beckoning me to celebrate the matrimonial bliss of friends and relatives, thereby causing me to head to designer boutiques and snag a stunning gown. I’m still, however, entirely enthralled with the bridal designs and evening wear designs of the season, which is why I had goosebumps when offered the opportunity to interview and feature ultra-talented and internationally-known bridal and evening wear designer, Galia Lahav.

It has often been said that fashion is a form of art and that clothing is art that we live our lives in. Designs by notable haute couture designer Galia Lahav of the Galia Lahav fashion house, prove this statement to be absolute truth due to the sheer pleasure each intricately-made piece brings to the eye. The care with which each piece is crafted and the wonderful unique appeal, reflect an aesthetic and beauty that deserves to be showcased like a piece of art in La Louvre.

My exchange with Galia reminded me that even the most successful and world-renowned individuals, started from nothing and needed to put the wheel in motion while taking necessary risks.

Lahav relays that she has always been an art enthusiast and actually even taught art for 15 years. This led Galia to designing couture bridal, beginning in her 30s, and  the talent identifies this industry as creation of “art itself.”

“From a young age I had a strong passion for couture because my mother taught me how to sew and I learned to observe every inch of every detail. I’d love to think that our brand’s style is original and innovative. ”

Galia explains that her work is set apart from other bridal-wear because she and her team pay attention to “body contouring and fitted silhouettes.” The designer also adds that they are able to offer “both beauty and comfort,” and are very “committed to both client and worldwide fashion trends, so the product is eventually a blend of unusual and a sometimes very unique point of view.”

The Galia Lahav brand is one that appeals to women worldwide. Lahav explains as to how she and her team manage to achieve this, stating, “The common thread of our designs is geared towards character, to a wide range of the ‘fashion forward’ lovers. In the end, statistically, women have more in common and they know it. So do I.”

Ms. Lahav admits that her point of inspiration when designing and fabricating her luxurious collections involves “everything from great art, music, great books, humanity and even sexuality.”  Galia adds, however, that the biggest inspiration comes from the brides’ wants and wishes.

 

 

 

That signature allure found in each design by Lahav has succeeded in drawing in the masses to hail Galia Lahav haute couture fashion house as a leader in bridal and evening wear. For more about Galia Lahav and to find out about upcoming North American trunk shows, visit www.galialahav.com .

Try these holiday inspired beauty and fashion looks

Christmas and New Year festivities are real opportunities to dress with a slight touch of elegance. Think glitter, shimmer and shine. It’s the one time it’s acceptable to look like you stepped off the set of a glamorous Hollywood movie instead of rolling out of bed, throwing on a pair of jeans and a sweater. Here are some holiday inspired beauty and fashion looks

Headbands with style

A simple and put together look can be completed with a perfect headband. During the holidays, it’s fine to add a bit of shimmer and bling to your accessories. Every queen needs her crown, right ? Try a tiara-inspired headband to pull your holiday look together.

Red Lips

Thanks to Fenty Beauty and Rihanna’s newly released Lip Stunna, lip paint in Uncensored, red lips will be plentiful this holiday seaosn . I love a classic red lip and Rihanna’s universal red works for every skin tone. Red, after all, is the colour of love and celebration.

Glitter eyeliner/ eyes

The glitter eye look will be popular this holiday season. Fenty Beauty’s Galaxy Holiday Collection presented products like glitter eyeliner and a glitter eyeshadow palette. Put your creativity to use and explore different festive eye looks, think gold, silver, green, copper, and even burgundy. A smoky eye with some glitter eyeliner also works. These looks will certainly match your sparkly dress.

Glossy Lips

If you don’t want to be over the top with heavy eye makeup and red lips, there is the choice to keep it minimal on your lips with a simple gloss look while you play up the eye makeup. It’s a more neutral look, but you will sill look polished.

Glitter clutch

If you will be pulling out that little black dress for the holiday party, you need some bold and bright accessories! Consider adding the glitter and glow to your choice to party clutch or shoes. The perfect glitter and holiday-inspired accessories will help your look come together. Just remember to go classy rather than trashy. Too many bobbles your hair will ruin the work you put into your dress and makeup.

What will you be wearing to ring in the New Year? Let us know in the comments below!

5 fashion trends you need to leave behind in 2017

If you have been following with the trends to leave behind in 2017, you would have read my list of five food trends and five beauty trends that should be tossed in the garbage before you ring in the new year. This week, after a well-tested Instagram poll, I am tackling fashion. Sometimes, fashion trends stick around for way too long, and these five items are no exception!

Fluffy footwear

A little bit of faux fur on your feet —no problem. In fact, there was some cute Steve Madden pumps with a bit of  fur trim that was quite popular this year. I am talking about the extremely obnoxious full fur slippers that have been spotted on celebrities around Hollywood. The ones that look like bedroom slippers, but are worn in public for some reason. I get they are comfortable, but some things just need to be left at home (or behind) in 2017.

Bucket hats

After being a popular hit in the 90’s, these hats made a brief come back in 2017. I’ve seen Kanye West, Justin Beiber, Chris Brown, Pharrell, and even Rihanna wearing these hats. Maybe it’s my personal preference, but I just don’t find the bucket hat quite appealing. Maybe it comes in handy for a fishing trip though.

Off the shoulder/shoulder robing jackets

I’ve seen this look a lot in 2017, the “effortless throw off your bomber or oversized jean jacket and let it hang off your shoulders” trend. It has slightly replaced shoulder robing. It’s just that suggestive approach of showing off the right amount of shoulder. Popular on celebrities like Kim Kardashian and Kylie Jenner, this caught on fast. The jacket is never fully on, it’s just hanging there…

Coachella-inspired fashion

Have you even noticed, especially around the start of summer, the common look in stores, year after year is the kind of boho-chic festival style. It’s that carefree, wild child with a flower crown, in a distressed tank top and short shorts kind of look. We have seen her —we have been her, but it’s time to retire this Coachella look every single summer. Unless you’re actually going to Coachella then thats fine … I guess.

Over the top nail art

I love getting my nails done or doing it myself, but when I explore some of the nail design pages on Instagram, I am shocked that many people still get their nails done with over the top and elaborate designs like studs and flowers. I understand wanting to show off your creativity, but this can be a bit much. Did anyone see the fidget spinner nails? Yes, those happened.

What else should we leave behind when it comes to fashion trends. Comment below!

4 ways to create your own gourmet kitchen

One of the most important rooms in your house is more than likely your kitchen. You cook there, sometimes you eat there. It becomes a hub of conversation, where friends and family can be creative. One of the things that many people look at when buying a new home is often the kitchen —  it it big enough, bright enough, and does it have state of the art appliances? Many foodies and aspiring chefs (and even amateur ones) love working in a good kitchen. Here are a few tips on how to create your own gourmet kitchen, or at least feel like you’re working with one.

Get Organized

No matter the size of your kitchen, it is essential it be clutter free. This creates the feeling of a grand working place. You should have select storage areas for specialty items and an organizer for everything from your cooking utensils to your excess plastic bags. Keep you kitchen streamlined and know where everything is kept for easy access. In terms of design, keep it minimal and tidy with easy to clean surfaces.

Bright Colours

Thanks to many optical illusions, a room painted in white or even cool bright colours often tend to appear larger. The reflective surfaces of the lighter paint helps a room feel bigger with wider walls. Try to find reflective surfaces that will lighten the room. For instance, white moulding or trim adds depth to a wall and using quality paint provides a bit of shine or gloss helping the flow of light. Avoid darker or muddy colours at all cost. If you want to add a pop of colour to your white space, use colourful appliances.

Invest In The Proper Tools

If you want to work in a high performance kitchen, it might be time to invest in some high performance tools. Try using professionally made pots and pans and especially appliances with a brand you can trust. These products will be worth the investment because they are durable and should last for an extended period of time, making you feel at ease in having a product you can depend on. At the same time, monitor the performance quality of any new appliances you consider investing in and see which one works best for your space.

Gourmet Products

Put the salt and pepper down if that’s your basic seasoning. It’s time to invest in some gourmet spices (and I use the word gourmet as just an upgrade from salt and pepper). Open your mind and your spice rack to different flavours and aromas. Get new spice blends, oils, vinegars and open yourself to trying new flavours. From Peruvian pink salt to pineapple curry, discover new and interesting products.

Let us know how it goes! Post a description of your kitchen in the comments below!

5 tips to dress for a sweltering hot day

Dressing for hot weather can seem impossible — running makeup, frizzy hair, sore feet, and of course, all of the clothing clings that to your body. It’s gross and can really ruin your day.

But, Women’s Post is here to tell you that it’s NOT impossible to dress to impress in the summer heat. In fact, the key is embracing your natural beauty and having a bit of fun with your summer choices.

Here are our top five tips to dress for a scorching summer day:

Natural makeup: I don’t know about you, but in extreme warm weather, the mere thought of foundation, eyeshadow, and lipstick makes me cringe. All I can picture is my face melting off as I’m walking outside with friends. It’s not even worth it. Instead, go for a more natural look. Stick to a bit of cover up if you have dark circles under your eyes and a bit of mascara. If you really want to go crazy, add some eyeliner on your top lids. Lipstick (or preferably a light coloured gloss) should be fine — just make sure you do a teeth check with a friend after that first glass of wine.

Updos: Do you ever feel like the simplest thing to do in the summer is to chop off all your hair? While short hair looks good on some people, others may want to keep their long locks despite the frizzy mess the humidity creates. In those cases, the easiest thing you can do with your hair is to put it up. Whether it’s a lazy bun or a braid, just get it off your face. Sure, curling your hair or straightening it may look professional and sexy, but once the humidity or head sweat attacks, those luscious curls will turn into a crimped monstrosity.

The best part is that updos can be equally fun. My biggest piece of advice is not to pull your hair back into a really tight ponytail or bun, as it may give you a headache throughout the day. Instead, put your hair up as you normally would and then tug at the ends to create volume. Add a headband if you want some texture. Let a few pieces hang down around your ears. If it’s not perfect, that’s okay! Perfection in an updo is overrated. Play around with braids and hair twists until you find something that works for everyday wear. If putting all your hair up is simply too horrifying to imagine, try the half bun. This hairstyle is very trendy this year and still allows you to get your sticky hair off your face while having the rest of your hair down.

Wear comfortable and loose clothing: Ditch the spanx and wear what’s comfortable. No one needs extra layers on when the humidity hits. Luckily, the trend this year is to embrace the baggy and bohemian — lots of colours and patterns. Tops are flowy with peek-a-boo shoulders and can be paired with shorts or a comfortable skirt. Try to find dresses that flatter your natural body shape. The trend this year is to have a dress with sleeves, which is perfect to protect your shoulders from the harsh UV rays of the sun. Dress these outfits up with a pair of cute laced sandles and a hat or dress it down with a pair of converse or walking shoes (see below).

The biggest tip: stay away from black (however slimming). This summer, embrace light colours and breezy materials. You won’t regret it.

shoes

Walking sandals: What used to be old and clunky has been reborn.They come in multiple styles and colours, including ones with laces and funky straps. I recently bought a pair of walking sandals that I love, and received a compliment at work about how they looked. The plus side? They were incredibly comfortable. Most walking sandals have cushioning and an incredible amount of support around the ankle — perfect to avoid those nasty falls. No blisters for me this summer! With all of these new styles, walking sandals can be worn to work or a night out on the town.

Photo courtesy of @SI_Swimsuit

Hit the beach proud: Worried your body may not be “beach ready”? Screw that! If you have a body, and you go to the beach, it is beach ready! When I went to Mexico on vacation, I was really worried that I would look terrible in a bikini. But, when I got there, it was so hot that I decided to ignore what everyone else thought and I rocked the two-piece. I was able to survive the excruciating hot week thanks to that decision. The best part? I wasn’t the only one. Everyone on that beach, no matter their size, was wearing a bikini. Some were even going topless! If it’s a hot day, wear as little clothes as is legally allowed and be proud of your amazing body.

How are you going to dress this summer? Let us know in the comments below!

How to dress with confidence?!

Do you ever have the desire to put on a pair of classy heels, a great pantsuit and strut down the street feeling great?

How often do you actually do it?

Probably not as much as you would like. It’s hard to dress confidently — people tend to go for either one of two options. The first is to dress for comfort. If your job allows it, jeans and a t-shirt with running shoes may be your style. The second option is to dress for others. Does your boss expect you to wear a skirt or a white blouse?

But, confidence dressing is all about making yourself feel good. Here are some tips for rocking that special look:

  1. A Great Pair of Heels

Many women stray from heels because they can be uncomfortable. That is why when purchasing your new set of pumps, be sure to test them out thoroughly before purchasing. Jump up and down, do a few dance moves, and run on the spot to make sure they will be comfortable. If not, abandon them. You cannot strut if you aren’t at ease. There is also nothing wrong with a short heel. It will still make the satisfying clunk sound women love, but may reduce the number of injuries.

2. Embrace your colour palette

Deciding whether cooler or warmer tones are the best choice for your daily outfit will help set the mood for wherever you are headed. Cooler tones are perfect for more low-key meditative events, such as a blue or silver blouse attending a meeting where you want everything to go smoothly. Alternatively, if you want to grab attention or heat up a room, such as when you are speaking at a presentation, a bold red top is the way to go. Also, pay attention to colours that are fit for your skin tone and hair colour. Blondes really pop in blues and reds, brunettes in purples and burgundies, and reds in greens and browns.

3. Find your flair

Your own unique style is imperative to feeling confident because no matter what, it is important to embrace “you”. Even with a typical business outfit, you should make sure to have a little piece of flair, a colourful pin or bedazzled earrings. It will make you stand out and increases confidence because it will make your wardrobe more personal, rather than looking like one of many.

4. Only wear a style that feels comfortable

If you feel like your pants are too tight, or your top is too low-cut, it will be difficult to feel fully comfortable and proud of how you look. Make sure to feel relaxed in your clothes. Going with free-flowing slacks rather than skin-tight jeans will almost always do the trick. Whether you prefer to dress business casual, sporty, in high-couture, or in vintage styled finesse, make sure you can stretch and break a few dance moves. Your confidence will increase tenfold as a result.

5. Blazers on hand when in doubt

Have a blazer on hand when you want to feel empowered and put together. A blazer is a quick way to make any outfit look smart and sexy at the same time. I recommend having a black and white one as it will go with any outfit and will absolutely give you the confidence boost when you want to look like a kick-ass and powerful woman.

 

Confidence comes in many forms, but dressing to impress yourself is a way to be proud of you who you are and show the world. There is no better feeling than strutting down the sidewalk in a favourite pair of shoes and a put-together outfit. It makes you feel beautiful and strong — and what better way to embrace your inner-self while demonstrating your outer beauty.

What confidence building fashion tips do you use? Let Women’s Post know in the comments below!

How to deal with winter hat-head

I love hats — but I hate taking them off. My beautifully-styled hair gets completely full of static. If the static is under control, my hair gets flat or twisted in knots. The terribly annoying part is that I never know which problem I’m going to get.

Winter is just getting comfortable here in Canada, and promises to stay for a few more months. Here are some tips to keep your hair office-ready while still dressing appropriately for the below-freezing temperatures that are bound to ensue:

Make sure your hair is completely dry: I’m terrible at this. My hair takes forever to dry in the morning, so if I don’t straighten it the night before, there is no way to make it work the next morning. It also means that my hair dries in the shape of my hat during the morning commute. Make sure that your hair is dry AND styled before you put that hat on, or else there is no hope for a good look once you get to work.

Choose the hat wisely: Make sure the hat you are wearing isn’t too tight. A looser material will allow your head to breath and therefore avoid the flat-head look. Wool hats, surprisingly, can prevent static while more synthetic materials will make your hair frizzy and dry. You can also try a loose beret.

Try braids or a knot: Put your hair in a style that is not affected by static or hats in general. A little static in a braid adds texture, and can come off looking more professional than a hat mess (get it!?). If you don’t like to braid your hair, try putting it in a small bun or knot. This way, you can take the bun out when you get into the office and let your locks fall gracefully, without the added frizz or static.

Use anti-frizz: Moisturizing oils or creams can help settle your hair before you put in the hat and trap the moisture in. This should avoid a) dry ends and b) any added static from the hat. Again, make sure that your hair isn’t damp when you leave the house. I’ve used some leave-in conditioner and it’s had similar effects. Make sure you style your hair and let it settle before you put on the hat.

Touch up once you get to work: Make sure to have some elastic bands and bobby pins on your desk in case of disaster. Maybe even a small can of hairspray. When you take your hat off, shake your head upside down to get more volume. Sometimes, that’s all it takes — other times, it requires a bit more work. And then, there are the times when nothing you do helps. In that case, put your hair in a bun or a ponytail and say “screw it”.

Everyone is entitled to a bad hair day, especially in the winter.

How do you deal with hat head? Let us know in the comments below!

Fall fashion #trending: oversized clothing is in!

I love the fall — pumpkin spice lattes, the changing of the leaves, and of course the return of cute boots. It is the one season you don’t have to worry about pouring rain, watery sludge, or below-freezing storms. Not to mention the sweltering heat wave this summer has brought us.

This changing of the seasons also signifies the end of shorts, tank tops, and bathing suits — all of the nice, but tight, fashion styles. Am I the only one ready for the return of jeans, light overcoats, and scarves? But, to my incredible delight, the biggest trend this fall is oversized clothing. That’s right, you can now flatter your body under comfortable, yet fashionable, layers.

Here are a few examples of top trending oversized outfits for this fall:

The Poncho: No, these ponchos are not water proof, but they are fashionable! These ponchos act like a blazer or overcoat, and can be worn with tank tops, t-shirts, and long-sleeve tops. They can add style, texture, and colour to your outfit. Depending on the style, they can also be appropriate for work as well as a casual outing with friends. The best part? Ponchos have the added benefit of being incredibly comfortable and flattering for all body types.

Le Chateau, $89.95
Le Chateau, $89.95

 

The Sweater: Who doesn’t love an oversized sweater? These items usually fall well below the hip and can be worn with pants or leggings depending on the length. If these sweaters are light and a bit short, try to layer it with a blouse or a tank top of a different colour. If it is long, try to wear it with your hair up and a chunky necklace. These sweaters are great for long-hour work days, outings with friends, or a casual walk on a cool fall evening.

MANGO, $309.95
MANGO, $309.95

 

The Suit: Gone are the days of tight pants and blazers that push your breasts forward. This fall business style is all about comfort. Loose pants and a top to match, maybe paired with a belt or some colourful jewelry, will make a true statement in the boardroom. The outfit extremely comfortable — allowing you to move, stretch and sit — and no one will tell you “no” when you are dressed to impress.

Zara
Zara

 

The Blouse: Heading to the market or going on a walk with your beau? The long blouse or plaid shirt is making yet another come back. Simple, comfortable, and stylish, you can’t really go wrong with this choice. Pair it with a single-coloured jacket, some skinny jeans or leggings, and a pair of boots within the same colour scheme and you have the perfect fall date outfit.

Aritzia, $110
Aritzia, $110

The Trousers: I’m in love with these trousers! Sleek and stylish, they take comfortable business style to a whole new level. They generally flare out at the thigh, creating a straight edge look that really works with either heels or flats. A lot of boutiques now carry these trousers — in multiple colours and styles. Just remember not to pair patterns with patterns when choosing a top.

Zara, $69.90
Zara, $69.90

The Wrap: Wear whatever you want, and then cover yourself in these beautiful bohemian wraps. Part poncho, part blanket, these wraps are perfect for evenings. Twist it to create a scarf, wrap it around your shoulder like a pashmina. The possibilities are truly endless. Something like this would be great for cold offices. Leave it at work and remain stylish while warm!

Three Bird Nest, $56 + shipping
Three Bird Nest, $56 + shipping

 

What are you wearing this fall? Let us know in the comments below!

Your guide to back-to-school fashion

It’s the most wonderful time of the year! That’s right, it’s time to go back to school!

In just under a week, kids of all ages will be pilling on to busses to be shuttled all over the city. Some may be excited, other’s terrified, but the one thing everyone will have in common is a desire to look good on the first day of school. But, what’s in? What should your kids be wearing this fall? Women’s Post has a few ideas:

For younger children, the freedom of being able to dress themselves may lead to some interesting combinations. If your child really wants to wear polka-dot leggings and a stripped shirt, who are you to argue? But, if they do ask for your input, it’s good to have a few outfits on hand.

Layers are perfect for class and recess. Try jean jackets — they go with everything and you can find them in all sorts of colours and styles. Don’t be afraid to be colourful and fun!

 

Smocked Boho Swing Top for Girls - Orange Floral
Smocked Boho Swing Top for Girls – Orange Floral
Gap, $59.99
Gap, $59.99
Converse, $64.99
Converse, $64.99

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

There is a new type of pressure for high school kids. No one wants to look like a dork wandering the halls on their first day of classes. For high schoolers, Women’s Post suggests keeping it simple — Printed tees, for example, with sayings that express your personality. Pair it with some funky jewelry or a funky jacket, jeans, and some rockin’ shoes. Trade in those runners for heels for a night out. An oversized sweater, with leggings or a skirt is a comfortable option for those long study sessions.

 

Torrid, $34.50
Torrid, $34.50
H&M, $19.99
H&M, $19.99
Staples, $119.99
Staples, $119.99

 

 

 

 

 

Heading to university this September? Remember to dress to impress — but it’s also okay to remain casual. Your best bet is to get clothing that can be worn with dress pants on presentation days, and with ripped jeans for those early morning classes. There are a lot of really comfortable leggings and pants that can be thrown on with a nice shirt for ultimate

Backpacks are critical. You may be spending an entire day on campus, running from one end to another with a computer in toe. Make sure you get a bag that is both stylish and practical. Over the arm bags can hurt your back if you aren’t careful, so try the traditional backpack route. Luckily, there are a lot of really great ones out there that are perfect for both the classroom and the interview room.

Note: no matter what other people say, do NOT wear pyjamas to class. Sweatpants or oversized hoodies are fine, but PJs are just tacky.

Aldo, $55
Aldo, $55
H&M, $19.99
H&M, $19.99
Mango, $34.95
Mango, $34.95

 

 

 

 

 

 

What are you wearing come September? Let us know in the comments below!