Simple Changes for Better Health

posted Jul 24, 2020, 12:12 PM by Walk Strong Calgary

One of the things I've often said about the Walk 15 program is that "the secret is in the simplicity." Simple moves that are easy to learn and effective in results. When we make lifestyle changes, one of the things that can happen is we try to do too much all at once, overwhelming ourselves and as a result we don't stick with the changes.
I coach my clients to make a few simple changes to start, whether that's around eating habits such as adding more leafy greens, or exercise by walking 30 minutes a day 5-7 days a week. These are attainable goals. From there, you build once you have a solid foundation - establish these small changes into your routine and then add something else to the mix.
One small change I made back in 2013 was to add a whole food product to my diet. I had been waiting and waiting and waiting for my sleep to improve since starting to work out in 2011, since exercise is known to improve sleep. I saw many other improvements (weight loss, more energy, self confidence, etc.), but it wasn't until I started taking Juice Plus that I started sleeping more deeply and getting to sleep much more quickly. In fact, the change was noticeable within one week and it took me completely by surprise. I didn't take it for sleep. Didn't even realize nutrition could impact sleep so dramatically. Of course, results will vary from person to person, and I in no way claim the the product is a cure for insomnia or anything like that. It just happens that for me, nutrition was the key to better sleep. Even my skin tone improved - I had people ask me (in December) if I had flown to someplace tropical on the weekend because it looked like I had a tan.
Loaded with a variety of vegetables, fruits and berries, I continue to take it daily and it's probably the last thing I would remove from my monthly budget, simply because I KNOW I need more F&V in my diet and I prefer a natural supplement to regular vitamins, which tend to make me nauseous. I dump the capsules into my breakfast shakes for convenience, but they also carry chewables, which are delicious. This is just one simple, healthy change that can make a huge difference in overall wellness.
Want more info? Visit:

Nancy Ehle
Founder & CEO, Witness 4 Fitness

Fall Vendor Expo - Nov. 10 2018

posted Oct 27, 2018, 2:51 PM by Walk Strong Calgary

Small Businesses Supporting Small Businesses...
Join Kathy Switzer, Patricia Klassen, Alix Milton and Nancy Ehle for this fun, informative mini Fall Vendor Expo! Various products available for purchase (great gift ideas!) or just drop in to learn about some of these excellent products and services. The coffee will be on between 10:00 a.m. and 2:00 p.m.!

Learn how Walk 15® Fitness Classes can improve your mental, physical, emotional & spiritual health from our very own Master Instructor Nancy Ehle. These low-impact classes provide a safe, fun atmosphere for people of all ages to improve mobility, strength, lose weight, and more. DVDs and fitness-related items will be available for purchase. 

Steeped Tea is celebrating its 12th Anniversary, and Patricia's Tea Shop will be on hand to help you select from among a wide variety and teach you how to brew the perfect cup of tea! The company has some amazing teaware, too - infusers, teapots (of course), mugs, timers and more!

Kathy is passionate about her Young Living Essential Oils and with good reason! Come and chat with her about the myriad of uses and health benefits of therapeutic grade oils, and be sure to sample them - they're delightfully aromatic and yes, therapeutic! Essential Rewards program and/or business opportunity available for those interested - a limited variety of oils may be available for purchase on site, but you can also place orders on site for delivery. For more info, visit:
Thirty-one is celebrating 15 years! Totes, backpacks, craft bags, handbags, travel bags and more... many of which can be personalized! Come and see Patricia - cash & carry items will be available!

Designed with love, Stella & Dot jewelry was named in honor of the grandmothers of the founders. Each piece is handcrafted with high attention to detail, including custom facets for each stone. Alix will have cash & carry items on site for purchase... if you like bling, you'll love this table! Visit:

Intrigued? Please join us on November 10!
Evergreen Village Rec Centre, #224, 405 - 64 Avenue NE, Calgary
On-street Parking ONLY - along Blackthorn Road or 4th Street NE
Contact Nancy:
Phone: 403-354-4905
Sorry, there are no more vendor tables available.

Special Kickoff for Fall Classes at Woodcreek

posted Sep 11, 2018, 9:08 AM by Walk Strong Calgary

I am quite excited to announce a special kickoff for our Fall series of fitness classes for older adults at Woodcreek Community Association! Matthew Miller MSW, RSW of Now Feel Good Counselling & Therapy Services will be joining us in the first class to deliver a special Health Talk!

Matthew's approach to wellness mirrors many of my own desires as a fitness instructor in that he cultivates a safe environment with no judgment. His presentation on Self Care is sure to benefit us all, especially given the fact that it's quite common for many of us to get into the habit of putting the needs of others before our own, sometimes neglecting our own health in the process. As we approach our later years, it's even more important to be focusing on self care... for our mobility, our longevity, our mental and emotion health. Whether or not you've attended our classes in the past, you're invited to join us! Visit for information on Matthew's background and services offered.

Thursday, September 20:
7:00 - 7:30 p.m. - Fitness Class
7:30 8:00 p.m. - Self Care with Matthew

Friday, September 21:
10:30 - 11:00 a.m. 
Fitness Class
11:00 - 11:30 a.m. 
Self Care with Matthew

Woodcreek Community Association 
1991 Woodview Drive, SW
Bring clean dry fitness shoes, a water bottle, and wear comfortable clothing.

Cost: $6 drop in fee applies, with the option of registering for the 12-class series for just $50 (a great value!)

Building Communities - The Northern Hills Mural Project

posted Aug 6, 2018, 1:12 PM by Walk Strong Calgary   [ updated Aug 6, 2018, 1:15 PM ]

One of the most important and enjoyable aspects of being a group fitness instructor is the community component. Our classes are not just about exercise. People come together initially with similar goals and a desire to make healthy choices, and before long they start looking forward to seeing each other, relationships begin to form, and often we become our own little community. I love seeing everyone visiting before class, and my Walkers are quick to embrace newcomers to the group!

As a business owner, I love getting out into the community when I can to volunteer. It's not always easy given time constraints, but on August 4 and 5, I set aside my continuing education studies to assist with a local project that made history in Canada. The Northern Hills Mural is the longest mural in the country, spanning over half a mile along Coventry Hills Blvd NE in Calgary. The project came about as a way to celebrate the Northern Hills Community Associations' 25th Anniversary (2019), and it's a project of which the Community as a whole can be proud! Kudos to the planning committee, the artist (Mark Vazquez-Mackay) and to the many volunteers who helped make it possible. Local businesses, from what I understand, were AMAZING in their support by donating supplies, power washing the fence and applying the base coat, and more! 

Here are just a few of the photos from the weekend. When you have a chance, take a drive up to Country Hills Blvd NE and turn North onto Coventry Hills Blvd - you'll be glad you did!

All images are © 2018 Grace Productions, a division of Witness 4 Fitness

Walk 15® Master Instructors "Crush It!" at IDEA World in Vegas

posted Jul 26, 2017, 2:05 PM by Walk Strong Calgary   [ updated Jul 27, 2017, 6:54 AM ]

Peace. Love. WALK. 

Hot and sweaty took on a whole new meaning on July 22 as we walked a 'Marathon of Miles' at the IDEA World Convention in Las Vegas! 109°F outdoors ... thank the Lord for air conditioning! Walk at Home made their presence known in the Expo throughout the weekend with live demos featuring Master Walk 15® Instructors from across the continent... Ohio, Minnesota, Alaska, California, Canada... to name a few regions represented. 

What an honor to be a part of such a prestigious event! We were joined on Saturday by program creator Leslie Sansone, who brought along several of her cast members from recent DVDs, including Nick, Kamilah, and Nicole, as well as Brittany, whom many may remember from some of the earlier videos back in the 80's-90's. These folks brought their energy and delivered all day long - even 'Elvis' made an appearance, along with 'Cher!'


Attendees were given a variety of free merchandise, including Walk at Home DVDs and "Walk On!" Tees, as well as an opportunity to register for certification at a discounted rate. Our overall goal was to showcase our Walk 15® program using our on-site team of Instructors, who brought their best all weekend long! With high-energy demos of other class formats on either side of our booth, our WALK 15® brand was up to the challenge, often drawing people in to join us. Congratulations to everyone involved - we 'crushed it!'

One of the highlights for me was a conversation I had with Kamilah Forster, creator of  Heel Hop, the first low-impact, sexy, high-energy 
workout in heels. Kamilah gave me some incredible feedback that actually took my breath away. I simply wasn't expecting it.

"There's a brightness in you that comes right out when you're on stage," she said. "I didn't want you to stop.  If you had done a marathon, I would
have walked every mile with you." 

Kamilah is a professional dancer and has worked with Prince. She's a wonderful person, and I very much appreciated her candid comments, and she wasn't being flippant or superficial - she was serious, looking me straight in the eye and speaking with authority... and there was more. I feel very honored that she took the time to speak with me. Thanks, Kamilah - I appreciate everything you shared more than you know!

In all, it was a fantastic experience. The Walk at Home team never disappoints. My heartfelt thanks to Leslie, Marie, Andy and all of the others who stepped in to make the weekend such a great success!

Nancy Ehle is a Certified Walk 15® Instructor, Master Level, as well as a Group Fitness Instructor via the American Council On Exercise. She's also a Health Coach and has several other specialties. As Founder & CEO of Witness 4 Fitness in Calgary, Alberta Canada, Nancy believes that exercise is for everyone. Her specialty is the Walk 15® group fitness classes, where her passion shines through, motivating and inspiring participants to go the extra mile... literally. Follow Nancy on Facebook: 

Celebrating 150 Years - Canada 150 Walk Concert

posted Jun 19, 2017, 6:16 AM by Walk Strong Calgary

For more info visit: Canada 150 Walk Concert

Practice Your 'Power Pose'

posted Sep 14, 2016, 9:03 AM by Walk Strong Calgary

I've always felt that one of the best portrayals of a super hero was done by Lynda Carter as Wonder Woman. Lynda was green as an actress, which actually worked in her favor during Season 1 of the show when Diana Prince first came to America during WWII. As the character developed, one of the traits often used was her adoption of various 'power poses.' Whether written for the character or added by the actress herself, Lynda absolutely nailed it. She appeared poised, confident, and at times had a countenance that said "don't mess with me." Yet if she smiled in that same pose, you could feel genuine affection. She has one of the most beautiful smiles I think I've ever seen.... 

Psychologists have actually proven in studies that by adopting a 'power pose' for two minutes, you can change your mindset when feeling powerless, that you don't fit in, don't belong, are stressed or nervous about an upcoming situation (like a job interview), etc. It can change the levels of cortisol and testosterone in your body, helping you feel more confident, poised, and in control. We know the mind can effect the body... the body can also affect the mind. 

Practice Your Power Pose  
Practice your power pose every day - for just two minutes. There are several that will suffice - standing with your hands on your hips; arms over your head in a v-shape (like sprinters do when they cross the finish line in first place); sitting with your feet up, hands interlocked behind your head with elbows to the side; leaning forward with your hands on a table... a pose that makes you seem 'bigger.' It's a pose that takes up lots of space. Hold the pose for 2 full minutes. Do it wherever you're comfortable - in the bedroom, bathroom, kitchen, washroom cubicle... it doesn't matter. Try it in particular if you're unsure of yourself or nervous about going into a particular situation.  Test it out over a period of time ... and see if you notice anything change about how you perceive yourself... 

Want more info? Check out this TEDTalk with Social Psychologist Amy Cuddy:

Special thanks to Helen Vanderburg of Heavens Elevated Fitness, Calgary, Alberta for presenting the video at a recent staff event. 

Embracing your Body, Whatever Your Shape or Size

posted Jul 16, 2016, 3:31 PM by Walk Strong Calgary   [ updated Oct 17, 2016, 10:31 AM ]

One of the things that really spoke to me when I first started walking with the Walk at Home DVDs was the cast.
Leslie almost always had a mix of ages, body types and body sizes. I could relate to them immediately - I realized that 'hey, if she can do this and she's heavier than me, I can do it.' There was a sense of reality, of genuine people who are on a journey to health.

On a somewhat related note, I love seeing how the standards are changing in the modelling world. Where at one time we would have seen a 'standardized' body image in a size 0-2 that's unrealistic for many of us, now we can often see a size 12 or a size 14 standing alongside... and they look just as GREAT! It probably took a lot of guts for these women to pose, but they appear poised, confident, and not ashamed that they're carrying extra weight. They've embraced their bodies and see their own beauty, accepting who they are and where they are in life at the moment.

Unfortunately, there are still those who will mock and criticize with cruel words. Words that truly are a reflection of their own issues. I came across an article with a perspective from the other side of the coin - from a model who responded this week with kindness to her critics after a shoot was done on Facebook live. It's a great article, wherein she encourages people to embrace themselves and honor their bodies with daily acts of self-care. Here's just one tidbit of what she had to say:

"When I watch the video, all I see is a woman glowing from the inside out, smiling so bright and having fun. That’s what beauty is to me. Self-confidence and owning who you are and where you are (weight fluctuations and all), is drop-dead gorgeous to me." Read the full article here:

Nancy Ehle is a Master Walk 15® Instructor, ACE Group Fitness Instructor and a Health Coach. As Founder & CEO of Witness 4 Fitness in Calgary, she provides low-impact group fitness classes for all ages, sizes and fitness levels. Follow Nancy on Facebook: Walk Strong Calgary. She's also an author, artist and photographer, and some of her work is now featured on an exciting new line of designer clothing! Visit
VIDA Voices Collection - Nancy Ehle

Joint Pain - Hyaluronic Acid May Provide Relief

posted Apr 11, 2016, 2:26 PM by Walk Strong Calgary

The US federal Centers for Disease Control (CDC) indicates that one in three adults is affected by the number one cause of disability in America - arthritis. Stiffness, inflammation and pain can keep patients on the couch, yet we know that inactivity brings its own set of health concerns such as risk of heart disease, obesity, and diabetes. Inactivity can also make painful joints worse according to Dr. Jason Theodosakis in an article in Total Health Magazine

There are treatment options, some of which improve function in addition to treating pain. One of these options involves injecting hyaluronic acid (HA) into the affected joint, a treatment that's been available since the 90's. According to Dr. Theodosakis, HA is essential for healthy cartilage and is "the principal functional component of synovial fluid" - the 'juice in our joints.' With osteoarthritis, HA levels in the joints drop, sometimes up to 75% or more depending on severity, which changes the consistency of synovial fluid, which should be thick and glutinous. As a result, there's less shock absorption and lubrication. With these injections (viscosupplementation), lubrication is restored and the joint is stimulated to produce more HA. According to the Banff Sport Medicine Clinic, 75% of patients treated see an improvement in symptoms. 

Aside from some risk factors listed in a handout provided by the Banff Sport Medicine Clinic, there's
also a cost involved, depending on your medical coverage (the benefits of the injections last from 2-6 months). 

Hyaluronic acid is also available as an oral supplement, and according Dr. Theodosakis, these can be quite effective, provided they're of high quality sources. He recommends a concentrated extraction from avian cartilage over either animal extractions (mixed with large amounts of inactive collagen) or supplements derived from fermentation of bacteria, which doesn't have some of the natural active components found in avian cartilage. 

Talk with your doctor about which option is best for you, and if you opt for oral supplementation, speak with your local health food store about how the products they carry are derived - if they don't know, ask them to find out. Prices likely vary, but I've seen a couple of sources who carry 60-capsule bottles for just under $40 Cdn. 

Nancy Ehle is a Certified Walk Leader and ACE Group Fitness Instructor. She holds several other industry certifications and specialties including Sports Nutrition, Health Coach, and Pilates Instructor. Her passion for helping people achieve their wellness goals is infectious! Follow her on Facebook and Twitter:

The above article is for information only and is not meant to serve as medical advice. Consult your doctor before beginning any exercise programs or supplementation regimes. 

Celebrating Heart Month with Awareness

posted Feb 3, 2016, 10:37 AM by Walk Strong Calgary

According to the Canadian Heart & Stroke Foundation, "heart failure affects 600,000 Canadians, and another 50,000 will be diagnosed this year" (2016). The unfortunate truth is that heart disease is a silent epidemic and according to the Foundation, it's growing. 

When a person experiences heart failure, the impact is widespread, and let's face it, it's a life-changing event, particularly in cases wherein there was no prior diagnosis. Family members are in shock and overwhelmed and the patient faces a potentially long recovery period. Even though medical science has certainly progressed when it comes to treatment, heart failure is still misunderstood. 
While there is currently no cure, there are things we can do in the way of prevention. Assessing your personal risk factors is a great place to start. This free on-line tool can help - 
Risk Assessment - but of course having a medical checkup with your doctor is essential in knowing your current state of health, including blood pressure and cholesterol levels. I would wager that your doctor will include physical activity in his or her advice regarding prevention. 

Walking is one of the BEST ways to strengthen your heart and make it more efficient. It's easy, requires no special 
equipment aside from a good pair of sneakers, and it's a very natural function of the body. Start with a gentle walk around the block or in the park and gradually increase distance and speed. Pick a route that includes hills for some additional intensity. Boost your walk when you're ready with short intervals of gentle jogging, provided you don't have knee or hip issues. 

A great way to take your walk up to the next level is to join us for Walk Live classes. Compared to a normal walk, these group fitness workouts use every major muscle group. We incorporate a variety of moves with the upper and lower body across all planes of motion, improving joint mobility, muscle strength and tone (hand weights or resistance bands are added), and best of all, strengthen our most important muscle - the heart. The important thing is to START WALKING, and any time is the right time to start! Visit for more information.

Nancy Ehle is a Certified WALK Leader, Group Fitness Instructor and Health Coach. She holds several industry specialties including Fitness & Menopause, Diabetes & Exercise, Sports Nutrition and more. Nancy's passion for health & wellness is infectious and evident the moment she steps in front of a class. Follow her on Facebook!

Heart & Stroke Foundation's 2016 report on the health of Canadians:

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