My Favourite Gear To Workout In

Some people walk into the gym with shorts they still used in their high school gym class and a simple t-shirt and destroy their personal records. Not me – I know that gear doesn’t make the man (or woman) but I can admit that I’ve fallen into the workout fashion craze, and not only like to be comfortable when I workout, but look good as well. And of course, functionality is important too. With that in mind, I’m going to score my favourite gear to workout in so you can try them out if you like.

Music To My Ears

jaybirds

No matter how good the music is, I can’t workout listening to whatever is playing at my box. I like to be in my zone and listen to my own playlist that keeps me laser focused and motivated throughout my workout. For me, standard headphones posed two issues – functionality and quality. When you’re deadlifting, squatting and doing functional exercises, there is nothing worse than my headphones getting tangled and yanked from my ear. The second issue is quality. I like my music clear and my bass deep.

The Jaybird Freedom Wireless Headphones serve both those problems for me, and are comfortable to wear.

They go behind the neck so taking them off can be done quickly and seamlessly too.

Comfort: 4/5

Style: 5/5

Functionality: 5/5

 

The Top

gym-sharkFor me, the most important piece of attire is my shirt. It protects me from getting cuts, provides compression and shows off the muscles in all the right places. I like them to be micromodal too so that it keeps me dry while letting my body breathe. My go to shirts have been Gymshark Phantom’s, mainly because of their colour selection and great quality. They’re a bit expensive when compared to other brands, but one or two should last you through the week.

Comfort: 5/5

Style: 5/5

Functionality: 5/5

 

 

The Bottoms

Blackout_LeggingsAdmittedly, I also like wearing leggings under my shorts. I’m just one of those guys – the DRY technology is great at keeping me feeling fresh during a workout and the compression helps my performance during heavy lifts. I’ve tried most of the brands, but Gymshark wins again with their amazing patterns. When I’m working on light routines, I prefer more funky meggings from Kapow Meggings which always gets the conversation going at the box. They come in all colours and designs.

Comfort: 4/5

Style: 5/5

Functionality: 3/5

 

Always Use Protection

My gym bag is always stocked with performance, rehabilitative and preventative gear meant to help me stay fit and injury free as much as possible. The most important things I will mention are always the smallest – lacrosse balls and kinesiology tape. The lacrosse ball helps me get the kinks and knots that inevitably surface during a workout. The kinesiology tape helps manage and decompress pain that may arise from rotations, cramping and muscle issues.

To prevent injuries and increase performance on a larger scale, I also use wrist wraps to protect my wrists and knee sleeves to help me squat bigger weight.

Comfort: 5/5

Style: 5/5

Functionality: 5/5

Going Organic In Your Own Home

Every year, more and more people wake up to the fact that many of the products we use and produce we consume are prepared using methods, ingredients and processes that are unethical and harmful to our health. From unethical working conditions to dangerous ingredients that are withheld from the consumer, conscious shopping has grown in popularity over the years. This has given rise to companies like Whole Foods, TOMs and even Honest, from Jessica Alba. The latter is particularly interesting because it focuses on a certain aspect of our life where the ingredients are still taboo – cleaning materials.

Just like what we consume is a product of what it consumed, what we eat, sleep and walk on is affected by what we use to clean those surfaces. It can’t be good for us to drink out of cups, eat off plates and wear clothes that have been cleaned with chemicals that would harm us if digested directly. Of course, we already know this to be true – drink a glass of water that has soap reside still in it and you will have a stomach ache for the rest of your day.

Commercial companies have caught on to this trend and now offer organic services to businesses and homes looking to make health conscious decisions. For example, organic carpet cleaning methods have grown in popularity, and today you can hire companies that use organic methods, such as safe materials, to clean your offices and home carpets, which we have contact with every day. The results have proven to be beneficial. Not only are you not using bad chemicals, which can be harmful to children, the elderly and pets, but results have shown that using more organic ingredients to clean carpets has extended the lifespan of and form of a carpet. It goes without saying that using the same methods across your home can have immense benefits as well.

Add More Light To Your Days With LED Light Bars

A few years ago, like we do almost every year, my family and I went to our cottage near Muskoka. On one of those long , hot beautiful summer days there I decided it was time I’d take the jeep for a spin. Like most guys who like to drive with more than just the top down, I had purchased a wrangler for myself. As a city boy though, my access to trails was quite limited. 

I’d heard wranglers are meant to be pushed and there was no better opportunity for me to test that claim than on that day. With a variety of water front beaches, dirt trails and great scenery, my options looked great. Now, being high up in your wrangler makes for great water driving and hitting the the dirt trails at full speed. 

By late afternoon, my jeep looked like it was dipped in chocolate. And my only concern was that I wouldn’t be able to do this all day. Bummed, I headed home to find a solution to this problem – I found it with LED Light Bars, and the next time I returned my only constraint was my gas. 

They are exactly what they sound like and they perform even better. I wanted something that would live up to the task – durable, good quality and well known. After doing some research I found a company that created these light bars for the Australian Outback, the biggest playground in the world. Their price was affordable and the range of options gave me enough information to make the right choice. From 120 to 480 W, I picked in the middle of the power availability since I wasn’t going to be using it professionally. The curved design of LED Light Bars gave me tons of visibility, which was perfect for the winding trails at night. I decided to go with a wide beam to get the most visibility?

The results were nothing more than amazing –  we got to witness wildlife, travel freely and enjoy the remote locations that are otherwise busy at night.

How I Succeed As A Vegan Athlete

crossfit

One of the most frequent questions I receive from my peers is “How do you succeed at being an athlete as a vegan?” All vegan jokes aside, it is a serious question. Many people have trouble meeting their protein in take on a regular diet. As a vegan, receiving enough nutrients and still being able to perform at the peak levels of my peers is a real challenge. Surprisingly though, it is not really that tough to accomplish. Today, protein is easily accessible in many forms, and with the clean eating craze going around, it is easy to find diets that include vegetables and proteins that are high in nutrients.

Tips For Vegan Athletes

  1. Eat more: Straight out of the gate, as a vegan you will have to eat more. You don’t consume as many proteins as your non vegan colleagues, yet still expend the same amount of energy when you exercise. Not to mention that vegetables can only provide you with the necessary calories if you consume the right amounts.
  2. Embrace raw foods: As a vegan athlete, you want to eat foods that provide the most amount of nutrients. One sure way to accomplish that is to get accustomed with eating raw fruits and vegetables. Raw foods retain more of their nutrients than when they are cooked and use less energy to digest, meaning you get the most out of your meal and feel great on your diet.
  3. Workout smarter: Recovery is the most important stage for an athlete, and a proper diet can help expedite the process. But that doesn’t mean you can’t work out smarter. Use the proper gear to keep your back, legs and wrist loose and don’t underestimate the benefits of stretching and rest days.

This is a guest post from vegan athlete and crossfit enthusiast Joe Kay. Check out his blog for additional information on crossfit and business.