Tuesday, 11 April 2017

New Review! Smartwool from Altitude Sports

This spring I had the chance to partner with Altitude Sports to review some great seasonal active wear.  I chose a Smartwool Product, in particular the Smartwool Propulsion 60 Jacket.  This is actually my first Smartwool item (apart from socks) so I was really looking forward to the review.  I had my choice of a few items and chose one most suited to my activities and climate.   You can view the full collection here.

My first test for the jacket was a 45 minute run in about +2 (celcius) weather.  I was overdressed but I didn’t overheat. I think this is a real pro of natural fibres – they keep you just the right temperature and are more breathable.  I also did a 90 minute run in chillier weather and was really impressed with the warmth of the jacket with just a really light base layer beneath.  My final test was my 5k run commute home with a small pack. I wanted to see whether there would be bunching or if the breathability would be impacted.

I received a medium and it was really roomy without looking sloppy.  For layering, a medium was ideal but a lot of my run tanks are very fitted so a small would have been ok too.  The sleeve length was great! I have a problem with short sleeves on things so I was happy to have a jacket that actually came down to my wrists.   Overall, I really like this jacket.  The only things I might have added are more reflective tags for visibility and maybe a tuckable hood.  I like the look of hoods more than the functionality.


  • Great for moderating body temperature as you run.
  • Good length of sleeves for longer arms. Note: there are no thumb holes which I really appreciate because I sometimes think thumb holes make an item fall firmly in the workout wear category while this jacket is a bit more versatile
  • No restriction to movement at all!
  • Even with a small pack on for my run commute there was no visible sweat marks or damp spots (this can be a real pain in cooler temps when you stop for a light to change).
  • Two roomy pockets with easy to access zippers.
Altitude also included 2 pairs of socks and I have been wearing them almost every other day.  The hide and seek sock are great for ankle boots and more comfortable than the Secret Sleuth ones that were in my Christmas stocking this year.

Now that I have a new appreciation for the Smartwool line, this tank in on my wishlist!  I would be interested in seeing how these fabrics respond in the summer heat. 
You can read more about the history of Altitude Sports here. I really appreciate the opportunity to collaborate with this great Canadian company!

Thursday, 5 January 2017

New Year Wishes

It is January 5th. I have had five days to reflect on some of the things I hope to achieve in 2017. I love this time of year. It has that September back to school feel.  We gain minutes minutes of sunlight each and every day as we head down winter's bell curve towards spring.  Whether you lean towards resolutions or goal setting, or you are perfectly content with where you are, this time can be full of newness.

I have tried to organise my thoughts for 2017 into areas I need to work on and explore more of. Some of them are harder than others, while some should come quite naturally (I hope).  In no particular order, my 2017 will look something like this:

No More Gluten! 
On December 23rd we received W's official Celiac diagnosis.  He has a biopsy in follow up to his positive blood test.  J also has a biopsy scheduled for January 20.  We (I) decided that the simplest thing to do would be to make our entire household gluten free. This does not mean I won't eat gluten outside of the home, but we greatly reduce the risks of cross contamination by eliminating it at home. My past weeks have been a whirlwind of baking new things, cleaning out toasters and cabinets, vacuuming ALL the crumbs and packing lunches and snacks.

I toyed with the idea of turning this into a food blog but thankfully much greater cooks than I already have magnificent blogs and resources.  I may from time to time share the things that we are doing to adapt, but that is about it.

Find a Babysitter/ Date night
W is three and we have never had a babysitter. My in-laws help us out from time to time, but we have only gone on about five dates since he was born (three of those were to celebrate our anniversary).  This is not a sustainable pattern. It is becoming more evident that we need to spend time on our marriage so we will be instituting a once a month date night (or afternoon).

I have been seeing a really great Chiropractor who is finally helping my tendinitis,  In addition, I have been working with a trainer to strengthen my running patterns and will be taking an 8 week training course specifically for runners in the new year.  I also have a fairly big goal to run Wild Horse Traverse in June. I am setting one race goal this year, and this is it!!

"This challenging point to point race starts on the beautiful beaches of Okanagan Lake, in Kelowna, BC and traverses through Okanagan Mountain Provincial Park, along the Kettle Valley Railway (KVR), past vineyards & parks on the Naramata Bench and finishes on another beautiful beach, all the way in the quaint town of Naramata."
I am spending time on body image. I am not sure exactly what form this will take yet, but it might involve a social media cleanse, unsubscribing to emails etc.  I find myself in this rabbit hole of researching "health" and fitness things ALL the time and it is exhausting. So this is more a note to myself to work on this :)

I would love to hear your goals for the new year!