Archives November 2020

Quarantine Routine

When we arrived in Vancouver we had to quarantine for 14 days were not allowed to leave our Air BnB. Here is a breakdown of the routine I developed during our time in isolation.

6.00am Wake up
I have been a relatively early riser for a few years now since working in the fitness industry. The heated floors in our flat make it much easier to stay up after getting out of bed.

6.30am Morning Rituals:
We have been doing these since the start of lockdown and they really help give me structure to my morning. I like to tick each one off in order and move onto the next ritual to start the day right.
– Pawanmuktasana (10 min stretch sequence)
– Bioenergetics (5 mins of body shaking)
– Cold shower (2 mins, the water is really cold here)
– Breath-work & meditation (20 mins)
– Journalling (5 mins)

7.30am 30 minute Yoga Flow
We generally follow either Breathe & Flow or Cat Meffan on YouTube but sometimes we change it up. This morning we did Kundalini yoga with Brett Larkin for the first time which was weird but interesting.
Shelley practising lotus pose
8.00am Coffee and Breakfast
After nearly 2 hours of activities it’s time to chill out a bit and I check my phone for the first time of the day. It’s good to catch up with all the banter from my WhatsApp groups to make me feel like I am still in touch with my mates back home.

Breakfast is always oats, coconut milk, peanut butter, seeds, blueberries, banana and honey for me (Shell is sweet enough already apparently).

9.00am Fire Up the Laptop
Time to start work. This mostly includes emailing, planning and programming. I have set myself a number of goals to complete by the end of quarantine to do with my online training business. They include:
– Plan and film all workouts for the 6 week challenge I will be running in January (more info to come on that soon).
– Create a PDF for the challenge so people can have all the information in a handy document.
– Set up a landing page for The Nomad Trainer.
– Write an itinerary for when I will be working on Osea Island for summer 2021.
– Plan future social media content.
– Write and send my weekly blog email (like this one).

I find it really helps me to tell people my goals so this is why I have gone into so much detail as it makes me feel more accountable to achieve them.
Hard at work
11.30am Walkies
We are not allowed to leave the vicinity of our Air BnB by law so we have been walking up and down the alleyway next to the entrance. It is about 20m and is not very exciting but I just put my headphones in and listen to my current audiobook Shoe Dog by Phil Knight, the autobiography of the creator of Nike. 

12ish Lunch
It took a while for us to get our first supermarket delivery of food after three consecutive nights of takeaway deliveries. Now we finally think we have exactly what we need. Yesterday, Shell made a delicious traybake of butternut squash, kidney beans and falafel with hummus and spinach.

1.00pm Study Time
Back to the laptop where I have been studying a Corrective Exercise Specialist course I purchased towards the end of the first lockdown which I never got round to doing. It is a substantial amount of reading and note taking which I think will take me longer than quarantine to complete.

I also have to finish a FOODSAFE certification so that I will be eligible to work in the kitchen at our new jobs starting in December but for some reason I am not allowed to start the course until Wednesday.

2.30pm Walkies Again!
I like to break up my studies with a second walk and another chapter of Shoe Dog. The chapters are roughly 30 mins each so 1 hour of walking adds up to around 6000 steps for me which is pretty good considering we are stuck in a confined space. Shell prefers to walk in circles in doors, we feel like crazy people.
Scenic walking route of Vancouver #0
3pm More Studying
You might think I am a nutter for pushing myself to do all this self-development but I feel like I have good momentum at this point. As I said the CES course is quite long and I want to get as much of it done as possible while I have the time. I also use DuoLingo for learning languages on my phone if Shell is using the laptop, she is also studying, setting up a landing page and writing blogs.

4.30pm Strength Workout
I am following the same strength program I made for my online clients:
Monday – Push
Tuesday – HIIT
Wednesday – Pull
Thursday – HIIT
Friday – Unilateral 
Saturday – HIIT
Sunday – Rest

The only equipment I have is a resistance band and household items like chairs. For more information about my online home workout programs please shoot me a message and I would be happy to organise a free online consultation with you.

6pm Dinner
After a busy day we treat ourselves to a hearty meal cooked in our fully functioning kitchen.

6.30pm TV time
We have been so disciplined with television, not turning it on at all (except when football is on) until after dinner makes it feel a lot easier to relax and chill out in the evening. We have been watching (and loving) Cobra Kai on Netflix and have binged through season 1 already. It is a late sequel to the Karate Kid (1984) with the same actors nearly 40 years later. It is easy watching and quite funny. We already finished the docu-series We Are The Champions which is hilarious and next up will be Queens Gambit.
Home for another 7 days.
8.30pm Reading
You must think we are right nerds by now but getting an hour of screen-free time before bed is great for sleep. It also helps that everyone in England is fast asleep by this point so there are no social media distractions. I am reading The Body by Bill Bryson and I am hoping to finish it by the end of quarantine if I continue at the rate of 1 chapter per night.

9.30pm Evening Meditation
Shell usually falls asleep around this time and I feel like I still have enough energy to go and sit alone in the kitchen and reflect on the day and give some positive affirmations to myself. Then I go to bed feeling very accomplished and sleep until I wake up and do it all again the next day!

Travelling to Canada in Lockdown

Hi friends, you’ll be glad to hear that we arrived safe and sound in Canada after a 14 hour journey. After leaving my mums at 11am, here is a run down of our experience.

How we got from London to Vancouver

When we got to the airport it was eerily quiet, with barely any travellers and not much going on. We didn’t have to queue at all to get our bags checked and we were glad to get rid of them after packing and repacking several times during the days leading up.

Security was quick and easy and once we got through to the other side we were relieved that the stress of getting over the first hurdle was behind us. They had asked us a few questions but we had all the relevant documents in a file (thanks to Shell) which helped a lot. 

We did not have to provide a negative COVID test, all they did was check our temperature just before we got on the plane. I had been wondering whether anxiety might raise my body heat, sort of like when you start sweating when you are about to speak in public for the first time. The thermometer gun lit up green and we were free to board.

The flight was with Air Canada and lasted 9 and a half hours and you have to wear a mask at all times unless you are eating. One of the stewardesses was seriously on my case about my mask. I had just finished swallowing my last mouthful of food and she came over and told me to put it back on. At one point later on, while I was reading, the top slipped down off my nose slightly, before I had a millisecond to pop it back up she was back telling me to pull it up. 

The plane was less than a 3rd full and everyone on board had a row to themselves which many people used to lie down. I didn’t get any sleep but it was nice to sprawl out though which made up for the discomfort of wearing a mask. 

Instead I watched the films Doctor Sleep and The Good Liar, both decent. I also read from my Kindle, did a few crosswords, listened to music and sorted out all of my files and documents on my laptop into neat folders as well as deleting a lot of useless stuff freeing up some much needed space on my hard-drive.

When we landed it was midnight in London but only 4pm in Vancouver. We felt spaced out as the majority of the flight had been in perpetual darkness except for an hour just before we landed. We had flown over the Arctic to get there rather than flying across Canada so we managed to catch the sunset on North Americas West Coast.

Vancouver airport was seriously quiet. We got our steps in for the day by walking down to baggage claim and then had our final obstacle, immigration. We sat and waited for 20 minutes while an officer processed our documents. They asked us a few questions and then printed our work permits which are valid for 2 years and happily sent us on our way. The relief!

We got a cab straight to our Air Bnb. A comfortable little fully equipped apartment underneath a family home. Unfortunately, we have to stay put for 14 days before we can explore otherwise it’s a $1m fine or up to 3 years imprisonment.

Our plan is to do a lot of yoga, bodyweight training, reading, writing, meditation etc. I do hope this is going to be a productive fortnight but the TV has Netflix built in and I have already watched the first Lord of the Rings film. Any recommendations for films, series or other activities are most welcome.

It is quite cold outside but we are keeping warm in doors, the air is noticeably cleaner here compared to London when we poke our head out the door of our little flat. We are a bit jet-lagged but we are very comfortable and excited about our upcoming adventures.

The Nomad Trainer Returns

See you later Boris! Last year, Shelley and I applied for working holiday visas to live and work in Canada for 2 years. The application was long and it took nearly 2 months until it got accepted in September 2019. We were allowed up to 12 months to enter the country from when the visa was accepted.

 The original plan was to fly to Calgary on 20th July this year and go and look after 12 racing husky’s in a small town called Golden, close to the Rocky Mountains. But when lockdown part 1 hit and continued deep into June we got rejected by the Husky owners and a few other potential jobs and assumed our adventure was not meant to be.
 
Now, in lockdown part 2 we are getting ready to leave in one week on the 17th of November. We will fly to Vancouver where we must isolate for 2 weeks before a short flight to Kamloops on the 2nd of December and then a 45 minute drive up into the mountains where we will be starting work on the 5th of December at Sun Peaks Resort, the second largest ski resort in Canada.

 We only found out in September that it was even still possible to go to Canada on WHV. A couple we lived with in Sydney posted on Instagram that they were heading there to work at a ski resort. 

 Shell did some research and found out that if you have a valid visa, a job offer and somewhere to quarantine on arrival for 14 days then they will allow you entry into the country. We also joined a Facebook group where people like us were posting questions, tips and stories about how to get into the country successfully. 

After surfing the web for a few minutes we realised that there were 100s of jobs going at ski resorts in Canada. We organised a few interviews and within a week of searching we had been offered jobs working in at a lodge in Sun Peaks.

At first, I was going to be working as a breakfast chef but now as the German travel agency cancelled their bookings for the season they will be redeploying me to the steakhouse. I have never worked in a kitchen (which my new employers are aware of) but I always relish the opportunity to try something new. Shell will be doing housekeeping, something she has had plenty of practise in during lockdown ha ha.

We plan to do lots of skiing, mountaineering and yoga so finally after nearly a 2 year hiatus, The Nomad Trainer returns! I also plan to write regular blog emails like this one and will be posting our experiences on my Website, Facebook and Instagram pages.

So now we are almost ready to leave, just one week to go. The flight is going to be 9 hours long and we are very hopeful that it still goes ahead. We won’t feel fully secure that we have made it until we get through immigration on the other side but we are very confident that everything is going to go according to plan