Gear Review

Activity tracker preview: The LEAF by Bellabeat review

IMG_6353(Heads up! This post contains referral links.)

In May of this year, I was lucky enough to snag one of the latest fitness trackers available on the market in a presale batch: the LEAF activity and lifestyle tracker by wellness tech company Bellabeat. The LEAF, designed as the first activity tracker made specifically for women, not only tracks your daily step count and sleep duration and quality, but also your stress levels through breathing exercises and your menstrual cycle. Although the stress-reducing and female-specific features had me intrigued, I was even more excited about the fact that it doesn’t LOOK like a bulky, plastic activity tracker. The LEAF is made of sustainable wood and hypoallergenic stainless steel, and the design is something I actually wouldn’t mind wearing every day as a piece of jewelry.

I’ve had my LEAF since late July, and have been wearing it every day for the last three weeks. I’ve worn it for long runs, intense strength training sessions, out to dinner with friends, to the office, camping, hiking and even to a country music festival. I was going to wait to do a review until more features are available and more bugs are fixed in the app, but I thought I would give you all a gear “preview” in case you were considering signing up for the next available batch.

Here’s a breakdown of my thoughts so far about the LEAF’s design, wearability, tech, app and tracking capabilities, and what I hope Bellabeat will make available in the next product batches and app updates. (more…)

#FitFashion Friday Feature: Some Product running and yoga pants from Breathe Athletic

IMG_4873Last weekend I had the pleasure of testing some new ethically produced, locally made yoga and running tights from Breathe Athletic here in Victoria BC. I’ve you’ve never shopped at Breathe, you must — owner Stephanie Hinton sources the most beautiful yoga, fitness and lifestyle apparel for women, all of it made in North America and/or produced ethically and sustainably where possible. Can’t get to her store? Don’t worry — she also sells her product lines online through her website at breatheathletic.com.

But on to the pants! I took this pair of tights from Some Product out for a chilly trail run.

 

 

 

 

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One thing I loved right away about these pants (aside from the eye-popping “Blue Equestrian” print, made-in-Vancouver tag and gorgeous imported Italian — yes, Italian — fabric) was their slight compression-like feeling. (more…)

Gear review: Polar M400 Sport Watch Activity Tracker with GPS

polar-reviewIf you’re a regular reader of Run. Lift. Yoga., you know how much I love testing wearable fitness tech (see here, here and here). I currently own a FitBit Force for tracking activity and sleep and a Garmin Forerunner 110 for tracking and pacing my runs, so when an opportunity to review the beta version of the new Polar M400 GPS activity tracker came up — a sport watch that not only tracks your daily activity levels and sleep, but also your running, cycling and other indoor and outdoor activities — I obviously did this:

 

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I was curious to see how the Polar M400 would stack up against the Force (which has an LED display and tracks activity, sleep and stairs climbed) and the Forerunner 110 (which tracks your runs and heart rate during activity). I like to use my Garmin’s heart rate monitor in conjunction with my FitBit and the MyFitnessPal calorie counting app to get a fairly accurate representation of what I energy I take in and expend each day (see my fat loss experiment here). (more…)

Practicing with prAna: Early winter collection yoga apparel review

Breath, life, vitality of the spirit.

Breath, life, vitality of the spirit.

Remember a few #FitFashion Friday’s ago when I posted about California-based yoga and lifestyle apparel brand prAna and their funky, well-fitting pieces with beautiful details? Well guess what — I was lucky enough to be selected through a Fit Approach campaign to try out a few pieces from their early winter collection… AND give my readers a 15% off discount code so you can try it for yourself!

I chose to feature prAna awhile back not only because I loved the look of their funky-patterned yoga leggings and tops, but also because I was impressed by their commitment to sustainability — something I think is definitely lacking with other active wear brands.

“A brand should give much more than it takes from the world”. This has forever been prAna’s simple answer to the complex challenge of sustainability. prAna’s reason to be and to continue on is based on an increasingly mindful use of natural resources, but also on our ability to motivate our community of customers and peer businesses.

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