The holiday season doesn’t have to be all about indulgence (well, maybe just a little). This year, you can share the gift of health and wellness with your loved ones with products that help you take even better care of yourself throughout the whole year. There are so many great ideas out there for people seeking healthy lifestyles – especially from local Canadian businesses. With New Year’s just around the corner – and those pesky resolutions, too – we’ve compiled a quick gift guide that gives you a helpful head start. It’s time to make our health our top priority!
An Activity Tracker Wristband is the only tool you need to capture your activity in any given day. And it’s pretty darn motivating, too. The Garmin Vivosmart HR+ activity wristband monitors your heart rate at the wrist 24/7 so you can exercise however and whenever you want with no additional heart rate strap needed. The device also calculates steps taken, floors climbed and calories burned, and tracks distance, time and pace for indoor and outdoor activities using GPS. Simply download Garmin Connect™ Mobile to your phone or login via your desktop for even more features.
A good quality Yoga Mat makes all the difference in your practice – whether you’re new to the moving meditation or are already a seasoned yogi. This Palm Leaf Yoga Mat by Toronto-based Always X Always has a natural rubber base (recyclable, renewable AND biodegradable) and it’s both soft and grippy – the perfect combo! With microfibre specially engineered to maximize traction, cushion and support, this mat’s performance only increases as you sweat. And its handy built-in strap means you don’t need to buy a separate carrying case.
Gone are the days when your only option was to SIT at your work desk all day. A Sit Stand Desk like Fitneff’s Elevate DeskTop™ DT2 is easy to set up and allows you to alternate between sitting down and standing as you work, which many have reported gives them increased energy throughout the day – a worthwhile investment! This desk includes a retractable keyboard tray for proper ergonomics, can accommodate even the tallest users (up to 6’6”) and comes in three finishes to complement your office.
Have you ever heard of Desk Pedals? Yes, it’s completely possible to combat the negative effects of sitting by using Fitneff’s Integrate™ Desk Pedals – an elliptical stepper that keeps your legs engaged under your desk while sitting or standing, watching TV or even just using independently in the standing position. They work in both a forward and reverse position, include adjustable tension control and track your activity. This would be a unique gift for someone who’s looking to burn more calories throughout their busy day.
A solid Base Layer is key to staying active all winter. Exercising outdoors can significantly improve your mood and gets you a natural dose of Vitamin D – you just need to be dressed properly. Vancouver-based Mountain Equipment Co-op (MEC) carries T3 base layers – both tops and bottoms – for men and women. The Merino wool is naturally anti-microbial, which is perfect for keeping you warm in cold weather and wicking moisture away from your skin.
Canadian-made Footwear by Baffin is inspired by our country’s most rugged and extreme climate – the Arctic. Understanding the fundamental layering structure used by Canada’s Inuit, Baffin developed technologies to modernize the traditional approach. They have a variety of recreational footwear available such as the Zone Boot for winter hiking, which can be worn in temperatures ranging from 10C/50F to -20C/-4F, and are both waterproof and breathable. Even the most hard-core adventure-seeker in your life will be impressed with their performance and durability.
Meal Delivery Kits are becoming increasingly popular – and for good reason. A Chefs Plate Gift Card, for example, encourages Canadians to step away from fast, highly processed food and prepare fresh ingredients themselves using exact portions and step-by-step instructions – delivered right to your door. There are land, sea, vegetarian and vegan options to suit every lifestyle, ingredients are sourced locally, seasonally and sustainably, and each recipe comes with detailed nutritional information. It’s a great way to help you properly fuel your body while juggling a busy schedule.
What you put on your body is as important as how you nourish and move your body. More scientific information is becoming available about certain toxins in Body Products – such as parabens – and the harmful effects they can have. Canada’s Saje Natural Wellness makes natural, plant-based body and healing products, and the Journey On Adventurer’s Kit is perfect for the nature seekers in your life. The kit includes deodorant, after-sun lotion, lip balm and an essential oil blend that can be applied to the body for a much-needed energy boost, keeping you feeling fresh and your spirits high.
For those with restless legs or who constantly tap their feet, a specially made Footrest can actually help you channel your energy to improve your mental focus. There is plenty of science-based research to support the mind-body connection (increased focus = less stress), which can make a huge difference for working professionals and students alike. With the Portable FootFidget® by Fitneff, when you fidget or press against the flexible, medium resistance footrest with your feet, you realize proprioceptive input (body awareness) and release energy, leaving your hands free for work. Cool, huh?
A proper nighttime routine combined with natural Sleep Remedies can be used to help you get seven to nine hours of sleep per night, which is what The National Sleep Foundation recommends for adults. The comforting Deep Sleep Wellness Kit from Alberta’s Rocky Mountain Soap Company includes a diffuser essential oil blend and a serenity wellness bath bomb. The combination of sandalwood, ylang-ylang and French lavender – a traditional herb used to treat ailments from insomnia and anxiety, to depression and fatigue – will help you get proper rest tonight for an active, heart-healthy day tomorrow.
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Here at Fitneff, we’re proud to have developed meaningful relationships with a wide variety of suppliers that are also trying to integrate more movement into the daily lives of North Americans. KidsFit is one such supplier! They design and create kinesthetic classroom furniture to help get kids moving at a younger age, and we’ve had the pleasure of working with them for quite some time now.
Late last year, we had the opportunity to help facilitate a donation of one of KidsFit’s pieces, the Fully Recumbent Junior Bike, to the Steadward Centre in Edmonton. We recently caught up with Scott Forrester, a manager at the Steadward Centre, to tell us a little bit more about the programs that they offer and how this bike will make a difference moving forward.
Given the heart-shaped theme of the Valentine's Day, we thought we’d put a healthy twist on the occasion and talk about heart health! According to the Government of Canada, 1 in 12 Canadian adults will be diagnosed with some form of heart disease - that’s pretty significant. Heart health is one of those things that we all know is important, but to actually commit to it, to actually make the lifestyle changes that are necessary is a whole other ball game. With that in mind, we’ve put together five practical tips on how to be more heart healthy, so that this Valentine’s Day your heart can be in great emotional AND physical health!
Incorporating standing desks into your classroom has been proven to have many health and learning benefits. According to a study done by the Ergonomics Center at Texas A&M, standing desks can increase engagement in the classroom by up to 15 per cent. That’s pretty substantial!
Since we know the value that classroom standing desks bring, last year we added Varidesk Education’s newly designed line of Stand2Learn desks that you’ve come to know and love. This product makeover adds several new features that make classroom engagement, collaboration and health even easier than before. Check them out here!