Holiday Gift Giving Made Easy: Ten-Minute Trainer {#Giveaway}

City Mom's Holiday Gift Giving Made Easy

As it nears the end of November, the holiday stress is starting to set-in for some. The traffic is getting heavier, the stores busier and the lineups longer.

If you’re like me, one of the first things you neglect in times of stress is your fitness routine. With less time to cook, healthy meals get a little unhealthier and your workout routines get shorter and shorter until they’re nonexistent.

Luckily there’s a remedy for that and that is Tony Horton’s Ten-Minute Trainer by Beachbody. Whether this is what you need to make it through the holidays or the perfect gift for someone special, you’ll be impressed with this product.

Ten-Minute Trainer


Beachbody’s Ten-Minute Trainer is a home workout program that guarantees results with just ten minutes a day. I was lucky to receive a Ten-Minute Trainer DVD fitness program to test out.

The Ten-Minute Trainer includes five different workouts:

  • Total Body
  • Cardio
  • Lower Body
  • Yoga Flex
  • Abs Routine

It also includes everything else you’ll need to conduct a full fitness regime:

  • Resistance Band Kit with Cardio Belt
  • Tony Horton’s 10-Minute Meals
  • Customized workout calendar
  • Rapid Results Guidebook
  • On-the-Go Workout Cards
  • 10-Day Lean Jean Plan
  • Bonus measuring tape


The holidays are one of the busiest times of year for bloggers like me. The holiday season starts well before November and December as we plan our holiday features. My fitness regime has gone out the window but when I received the Ten-Minute Trainer I started back up in small doses.

I love the 10-Day Lean Jean Plan. It’s a ten-day plan to help you kick-start your commitment. Sometimes I get frustrated when I don’t see the results I expect right away. This plan is a great way to drop a size to give you that motivation you need to keep going.

The meals aren’t complicated and don’t require you to find all sorts of ingredients and spend hours in the kitchen. This whole program seems to be designed for people like me and probably you.

Here’s an example of one day’s menu (This is just a ten-day plan and not intended to continue for longer):


  • 1 cup low-fat cottage cheese
  • ½ cup sliced peach
  • 1 slice whole-grain bread


  • 1 cup fresh fruit


  • Tuna Sandwich with mayonnaise


  • Roast turkey breast
  • 1 cup spinach


  • 1 baked apple, sliced
  • 1 tsp sugar & cinnamon

The Customized workout calendar directs you on what workout programs to do and when. And it’s set up for all types of people. For example, it shows you what workout to do if you’ve really only got ten minutes. But if you have twenty minutes it tells you what other workout to do and so on.

The calendar is set up for an entire month of workouts and by combining them with the healthy 10-minute meal suggestions and Michi’s Ladder, you’ll see significant results. I have not been about to complete a full four weeks yet because I wanted to get this out in time for Christmas) but I am excited to do so and report back.

I also found the DVDs easy to follow and easy to understand with clear instruction and demonstrations.


I watch late night TV. I know there are a lot of products out there that promise to shed weight in no time flat and I admit I’ve tried some of them. Sadly, the truth is that you need to burn more than you take in. The Ten-Minute Trainer is just that! And it’s all packaged up in a way that makes it impossible to come up with excuses as to why you can’t lose weight and stay fit.

If you’re looking for a fitness and nutrition plan that is realistic and easy to follow then I recommend this program. And not just for the busy holiday season but for always as a way to stay fit. I also recommend this as a good Christmas gift  for someone in your life that has a busy schedule, travels a lot, has young children or is just looking to keep fit in the comforts of their own home.


I’m just one person so you should see what others are saying too. Like any fitness and diet routine, results and experiences vary with each person and how they are using it.


The Ten-Minute Trainer retails for $89.99 and can be found at Shopper’s Drug Mart, London Drugs, Sears and Target.


One City Mom reader will win a Ten-Minute Trainer package as described in this post. Please use the Rafflecopter form below. Good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

 City Mom

Bartonella a.k.a. Cat Scratch Disease


Recently a friend of mine found herself in the emergency room dealing with an unusual issue with her one of her eyes. During  the previous few months she had been experiencing a scary explosion of colour in her left eye. After a number of episodes she went to see a doctor to find out what it was.

At first they tested her for all sorts of possible eye-type issues to no avail. Next they thought it might have something to do with high blood pressure and/or hypertension. She was scheduled to go back for some more tests and what they ended up discovering was that it wasn’t related to any of the above mentioned illnesses but a bacterial infection called Bartonella.


Cat scratch disease is a bacterial infection (Bartonella) that is usually caused from the scratch lick, or bite of a cat. More than 90% of people who contract it had contact with cats or kittens. Source:

The first signs and symptoms of Bartonella are very similar to that of the flu. That is why it can be particularly hard to detect in children for moms and dads. Any parent knows there a many times throughout the year that a child can exhibit cold or flu-like symptoms. And we become quite used to it and don’t get particularly alarmed.

Most people who suffer from Cat Scratch Disease don’t recall being scratched by a cat. A number of days later a cut or bump may form where the body was in contact with the cat, but these are often mistaken for insect bites.


  • fever
  • fatigue
  • headache
  • poor appetite
  • an unusual, streaked rash
  • swollen glands especially around the head, neck and arms
  • lower abdominal pain
  • sore soles of the feet
  • enlarged lymph nodes
  • sore throat
  • soft, firm, tender, or painful lumps under the skin


If left untreated, Cat Scratch Disease can show itself in the following forms (these are very rare):

  • infections of the liver, spleen, bones, joints, or lungs
  • a  lingering high fever without other symptoms
  • eye infections
  • a small sore on the inner eyelid or lining of the eye
  • redness of the eye
  • inflammation of the brain or seizures


The good news is that many of the symptoms of Cat Scratch Disease will go away on their own. Diagnosis can be done through a blood test and there are antibiotics that can be prescribed for some cases.

Children with a history with cats and exhibit these symptoms will likely be tested for Bartonella so be sure to tell your doctor if you suspect this could be the case.

Image: Carlos Porto /

City Mom

Being a Champion for Your Child

Photo from

Have you ever done something completely out of your comfort zone; something so unlike your usual behaviour, without a second thought or hesitation, all in the name of your child?

If you can answer yes to this question then you’re like me, thousands of other parents and the character Kristina from the hit TV show Parenthood.

I’ve been a fan of this show since it first aired. I quickly became caught up in the lives of the characters as they made their way through child rearing, relationships and career challenges. When Kristina spoke the line “…haven’t you ever wanted to be a champion for your kid?”, I began writing.

Kristina was advocating for her son Max who has Asperger’s Syndrome. A large part of the show focuses on Kristina’s family and their challenges. One doesn’t need to have a child with autism to identify with them. Aspects of their story are easily relatable and you’re able to put yourself in their position. You will find yourself cheering them on and asking the question ‘what would I have done?’

Kristina’s words struck a chord with me because the other day I did something that surprised me a little. I picked up little S from school and began a quick chat with one of her teachers to get an update on her day. S has been going through a ’testing’ phase both at school and at home so we’re used to getting some not-so-great feedback at the end of the day. It’s usually no big deal. My husband and I will chat about it at home and decide on our action plan if any. On this day, though, the feedback was delivered in a way that seemed unprofessional and unfair to little S. This caused me to feel that on this particular day, from this particular teacher, S wasn’t getting the best treatment possible.

This made me furious! I know things can’t be perfect at any school or daycare and my child is not perfect either, but I still expect the best care possible for my little girl. For that reason I voiced my concern. I wasn’t rude or unprofessional. I just expressed how I felt. This is something that I find difficult. I hate conflict and will often try to avoid it.

I started with a comparison of S’s current teacher with her teacher from last year who “was so great at dealing with S.” I then went on to state that it was rather obvious that she (her current teacher) was getting frustrated with little S and that she was the professional who should know what to do. I also made some reference to government regulations (based on a statement the teacher had made about being alone).

When I got home, I reflected on the event and wondered from where the courage came and from where the words had emerged. Now I know. I was being a champion for my child, and when you’re playing the role of champion, not much can stop you.

I’d love to fill you on the rest of this story, but the end has not yet happened. My husband and I will have a meeting with her teachers later this week where we will discuss the issues that upset us. At this point it seems that her teacher was getting frustrated at being a teacher, which while understandable; the fact remains that neither student nor parent should ever pick up on that.

There are some battles we will have to let our children fight for themselves and there are some where we, as parents, will have to gear up, armor and all, and be the champions.

City Mom

The Power of the Alphabet

Let me ask you, does everyone take a multivitamin supplement each day?

Maybe I’m asking an obvious question.  This is something I only recently started doing myself.  Of course I did take my prenatal vitamin religiously while pregnant and breastfeeding.  Unfortunately I fell out of the habit when life as a busy Mom took over.  I know; excuses, excuses.

I had convinced myself that I was getting all of my daily nutrients through the foods I was eating but clearly I wasn’t.  I use the word ‘clearly’ because since I have started with my daily regimen, I have really noticed a difference.

For example, just last week, my sister asked me if I had been tanning.  The answer to that was no.  I refuse to give wrinkles any type of advantage.  The night she asked, I would have said I didn’t look my best.  It was the end of the day and I was tired. I was puzzled, but then it dawned on me; the multivitamin!

I have also noticed that my cravings for sweet snacks have significantly decreased.  Don’t get me wrong, I’d still choose chocolate over a rendezvous with Christian Bale but it’s not a do-or-die situation.  My body had been trying to tell me something, and I wasn’t listening.

Overall, I look better and feel healthier.  They say is takes 28 days to create a habit.  After 15 consecutive days of swallowing a One A Day Women’s Multivitamin supplement I am well on my way.  The Women’s blend is specially formulated to support healthy bones and breast tissue and includes 50% of our daily Calcium requirement.


  • Vitamin A helps our eyesight and a deficiency of this vitamin can lead to blindness
  • Vitamin B6 (& biotin) works as an anti-aging agent by preventing greying of hair and hair loss
  • Vitamin B12 can support and increase the rate of our metabolism
  • Vitamin C is an antioxidant and can protect your body from free radicals which may cause heart disease and cancer
  • Vitamin D has been associated with a reduced risk of breast cancer in women
  • Vitamin E can help to promote healing and skin hydration

So if you don’t already have a daily habit of eating your alphabet, now is the time to start. With our chaotic, 21st century lives we can’t always count on getting all the goods from our foods.  Popping a pill each day will ensure your overall wellbeing.

Happy swallowing!

For More Information:  One A Day Womens

Will You Be Working on That This Weekend?

“No!  I will be spending time with my family;  my amazing little girl, whom I only see 3.5 hours a day, and my husband,  with whom I get about half that amount of quality time.”  This was my desired response when asked this question from a colleague at work.  My actual response was a simple “No, I won’t be.” 
This question left me buzzing, antsy fingers and all, with the only possible remedy coming in the form of a good workout on the keyboard.  I wanted, and needed, to dig into this. 

Can a parent be successful and at the top of his/her game in all facets of life?

Let’s look at the main aspects of a typical person’s life:

  1. Family (children, partner)
  2. Extended Family (parents, siblings etc.)
  3. Career (hours at the office, overtime, networking etc.)
  4. Social
  5. Health & Wellness (exercise, nutrition, personal hygiene, hobbies)
  6. Sleep

This list is not presented in any particular order but the items do jump out at me as the six main components of one’s life.  Is it possible to perform the best you possibly can in all six areas or is it inevitable that one or more will suffer?  Do we need to dilute our performance, spreading out our energy and focus or can we achieve top results in all areas?

Am I expected to work on a project over the weekend?  Will I get ahead faster? Will my career suffer if I choose not to?  I don’t think you have to be a rocket scientist to know the answer to these questions is a big bold Yes!  So where to hone in?  This is obviously a choice made on a very individual level and personally my family comes first…but what area of my life is losing out because of that?

The words ‘balance’, ‘prioritization’ and ‘time-management’ seem to be key in answering these questions but first we need to find time, energy and focus to explore those areas to put our skills to the best possible use; and all this is making me dizzy.

What are your thoughts?  How are you finding harmony in your life?  Share your tips, ideas and thoughts and have a relaxing weekend!

Photo courtesy of photographed by Stefano Valle.

City Mom

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