Posts Tagged ‘Active Living’

Let the Music Play…

April 5, 2018

Written by Marina Hodson

I think we can all agree that listening to music you enjoy can improve your mood and get your toes tapping, but did you know that music can also have many physical and mental health benefits?

2018-04-05_1334It will not likely come as a surprise that listening to music elevates mood and can reduce the symptoms of depression, reduce stress and improve sleep. However, scientists have actually found that the beneficial emotions associated with listening to music have a healthy effect on blood vessel functioning resulting in increased blood flow.

More surprising findings have included that background music may enhance performance on cognitive tasks and has been shown to allow test participants to complete more questions correctly in allotted time.

Music also assisted cancer and stroke patients to manage anxiety, pain and aided in their overall recovery. Such positive benefits were also found in studies looking at post-workout recovery where music was shown to help the body recover faster. This may also explain why music was found to decrease the intensity of pain in geriatric and palliative patients.

Of course all those things aside, listening to music can be just plain enjoyable and will definitely boost your motivation during your next workout, so get those toes tapping.

Your friends at the Kawartha North FHT

Get a Bike from Mike at Spokes for Folks

March 22, 2018

Written by Dana Deathe

If you’re a cyclist in this area, you probably know Mike Gorman at Spokes for Folks, the biggest little bike shop in Cambray. Maybe you’ve been there with your bike to get a tune-up or some repairs, done by Mike the mechanic whiz, or maybe you’ve been there to sweat it out in a spin class with his partner and co-owner Deb Craven.


Mike Gorman of Spokes for Folks. Photo: Deb Craven

The shop is a dream for cycling enthusiasts; rows of shiny new bikes beckoning for a rider, the light smell of fresh rubber from new tires, cycling gear and accessories lining the walls. One wall proudly boasts a row of cycling jerseys, worn by professional riders that Mike had coached into successful careers, and a large number of medallions hang on wooden plaques.

Or, you may know Mike and Deb from their involvement in our community. They organize group rides and races around Kawartha Lakes, and support our events as they did at Snowshoe Kawartha this past February by bringing Fat Tire Bikes for people to try. No matter how you know them, it became clear to me very quickly that Mike and Deb are a huge part of the cycling community in this area.

After 49 years in the bike business, Mike is ready to hang up his toeclips: “49 years of nurturing champions, enthusiasts, and novices in the wonderful world of cycling.” To celebrate Mike’s retirement, Spokes for Folks is having a sale. This is a perfect opportunity to grab yourself a fresh set of wheels for spring and get outside for some fresh air and exercise. “High quality bikes, clothing, and accessories are up to 50% off” from now until May 30th.

What’s next for Mike, Deb, and Spokes for Folks? They will continue to advocate and support the cycling community in the City of Kawartha Lakes, and in 2019 the shop will continue to be open for custom orders, repairs, and parts, with reduced hours and by appointment.

“Join the wave of fun and fitness on a bike from Mike!” Spokes for Folks is located at 30 North Street in Cambray, 705-374-4633. Stop by for the sale, and to wish Mike a Happy Retirement!

“Runnin’ Rhonda” named Ambassador for Canal Pursuit for Mental Health

March 22, 2018

The Canal Pursuit for Mental Health is a 750 kilometer run along the Trent Severn and Rideau Canals in Ontario to raise awareness and funds for the Mood Disorders Society of Canada. This year marks the 4th annual Canal Pursuit for Mental Health run, and local resident Rhonda Ingram-Empey has been named an Ambassador for the run and its mission.


Photo from Rhonda Ingram-Empey’s Facebook

Rhonda is a force of positive energy, and this is evident in her Facebook feed which is full of encouraging words to her friends and followers. “Running is my own personal journey,” says Rhonda, “in the last 8 years running has changed my whole life: mentally, physically, and spiritually.” Rhonda hopes to encourage others to push themselves to live a healthier lifestyle and use exercise to combat mood disorders, like depression and anxiety.

Rhonda first heard of this epic run and fundraiser when she met Clay Williams, the organizer and runner “a few years ago, at different races, and he was just such a quiet and humble gentleman. I had heard of his organization, the Canal Pursuit for Mental Health, and I first followed Clay on his 750 km run 2 years ago and caught up with him when he stopped in Fenelon Falls. This year, he is splitting up the runs, and reaching out to local runners to have them plan something in their communities.”

Rhonda hopes to get lots of people, not just runners, involved in the event. The portion of the Canal Pursuit for Mental Health that runs through Fenelon Falls, led by Rhonda, will be here on Monday, August 21st. If you would like to get involved with fundraising and running for this great cause, visit the Canal Pursuit for Mental Health Facebook page here.

Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff

March 22, 2018

Written by Marina Hodson

Did you accomplish everything you wanted to this winter? Are you constantly feeling guilty about not calling your – mother, brother, sister, friend?  How about fretting about your child’s last semester? We have all felt stress and while it can be a positive motivating factor, don’t let it become a negative force in your life.

stress1Stress is a normal response to “dangerous” situations, but unlike our ancestors, we do not often face wild animals to trigger the fight or flight response. Today it is more likely to be that commute from the city, a nagging deadline or our internal guilt that is causing this and it could trigger our natural instincts to be stuck in the on position for extended periods.

Chronic stress can begin to interfere with our ability to live a normal, healthy life, causing loss of sleep, abnormal eating habits, exacerbating chronic diseases and leading to depression. Often the causes are a culmination of small factors that in of themselves are easily overcome.

So if you are feeling stressed, take a step back to identify the causes and list them individually to enable you to break them down into smaller, more manageable tasks. Take a moment to walk away from a stressor that seems outside of your control right now, this is obviously not the approach to take for the commute home. Let go of issues that are simply “not worth the battle.” Exercise, cut back on caffeine and alcohol, try to maintain good sleeping habits, and if all else fails – recognize if and when you need help to address these issues.

Recognizing that stress is negatively impacting your life is the first step in the battle – don’t let it rule your life.

Your friends at the Kawartha North FHT

Resolution Run Another Success (Jan 2015)

January 5, 2015

New Years Day at Sweet Bottoms

A group of individuals dedicated to a heathy lifestyle gathered together at Sweet Bottoms Coffee House to start the New Year off with a bang. Approximately 25 runners geared up and set off for a 4.5 km run around the village of Fenelon Falls bright and early on New Years Day.

The resolution run is an annual event in Fenelon Falls.  Even Santa decided to join the fun and try to wear off the extra cookie weight he gained from Christmas Eve.

The group enjoyed the opportunity to start the year off with a step in the right direction.  Staying fit, getting out in the fresh air and building off the camaraderie of the other participants was the goal of the day.  Despite the cold temperatures, the event was a great success. Congratulations to all the participants.

Shopping Counts As Exercise (Dec. 2014)

December 8, 2014

stay healthy while enjoying Christmas in the Kawarthas


It’s no secret that living an active life is a great benefit to our longevity.  While it can feel easy to stay active during warmer weather, we in the Kawarthas enjoy activities 365 days a year.  We get out and skate, curl, cross-country ski, snow shoe and snowmobile our way outside even in the dead of Winter.  This December you may notice a lack of time to schedule any physical activities but take heart, shopping counts as exercise.  House cleaning counts, decorating for the holidays counts, shovelling snow really counts.


Just as important as exercising is feeling up for it.  The Fenelon Falls Walk-In Clinic is open on Fridays for any one fighting a bug or needing any medical care.  Have you scheduled your annual check up?  The team at Kawartha North Family Health Team is ready to make you feel looked after.

Happy Shopping!



Dec 5, 2014 09:00 am to 12:00 pm
Located at the Fenelon Falls Pharmasave. Please remember the walk in clinic is for accute care only. Thank you.

Take precautions when clearing snow (Nov 2014)

November 24, 2014


With Kawartha Lakes recovering from the first extreme weather event of the winter season, it is a good time to remind people of the dangers, and safety precautions of snow removal.

While shoveling snow can be good exercise, it can also be hazardous for optimistic shovelers who take on more than they can handle. Kawartha Lakes Paramedic Service offers the following tips to help you get a handle on safe shoveling.

• Take it easy. Snow shoveling is a weight-lifting exercise that raises your heart rate and blood pressure. Warm up before starting the job and stretch both before and after shoveling.

• If possible, shovel only fresh snow — it is easier to shovel than wet, packed-down snow.

• Push the snow forward rather than lifting it out of the way and pick up only small amounts when needed. Your back will thank you!

• As with any lifting activity, use your legs, not your back. Legs should be bent and back straight. Bend and “sit” into the movement, allowing large muscle groups to do most of the work.

• Dress as you would for any outdoor activity. Dressing in layers is best. Take extra precautions to keep hands and feet warm.

• Never work to the point of exhaustion. Take frequent breaks. If your chest feels tight, stop immediately. Individuals who are relatively inactive should be especially careful.

If you have a history of heart trouble, check with your doctor before shoveling. “The City received a tremendous amount of snow with this extreme weather event,” said Paramedic Chief Keith Kirkpatrick. “Residents are really encouraged to follow these simple guidelines and reminders for shoveling snow.

“Shoveling snow, particularly as it gets more wet or compacted, can require a tremendous amount of exertion and can easily lead to fatigue and other issues,” he added.

The safest choice for those with risk factors is to hire a snow removal professional. But for those who insist on doing it themselves, follow this advice.

• Shovel for five minutes or so, and rest for three. Maintain this pace to prevent fatigue and over exertion.

• Let someone know that you’re outdoors so they’ll know if there’s a problem.

Using a snow blower can also be dangerous for many reasons (noise, moving parts etc.). Watch for children, pets and motorists!

Kawartha Lakes Paramedic Service responds to several calls each year for snow shoveling/blowing related incidents.


For more information please contact:

Keith Kirkpatrick

Paramedic Chief

705-324-9411 Ext. 3310