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My Evolved Life w/ Vu Nguyen
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My Evolved Life w/ Vu Nguyen

Author: Vu Nguyen

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You're listening to My Evolved Life, a podcast that simplifies health and fitness, and helps you maximize your life. My name is Vu Nguyen and I'm the creator of the Evolution Training System. We're so lucky to be living in the information age, meaning it’s easier than ever to access information and find answers to any questions you may have. But, isn't it confusing when you read information that's conflicting, or worse yet, just sounds wrong? I'll be sitting down with industry professionals to give you clarity and leave you with tangible actions you can immediately take to improve your physical, mental, and psychological health.
26 Episodes
On this episode of My Evolved Life, I have a chat with Emily Johson, founder of StrongerU Senior Fitness. We talk about the importance of exercise as you age, the impact of exercise on mental health, and why we should never stop exercising.
On this episode of My Evolved Life, I have a chat with Aaron and Amanda Wilson, founders of Optimal Living YYC. We talk about the importance of balancing training and recovery, i.e. massage, stretching, etc., minding your posture, and running a business as a couple.
On this episode of My Evolved Life, I have a chat with Max Hall, a Strength and Condition Coach of 5 years. We talk about how exercise is about more than just physical health. We also talk about how personal trainers can better serve their clients.
On this episode of My Evolved Life, I talk to Christine Bezzant, a mother of 6. We talked about how she managed to prioritize her exercise, while being a very busy mom. We also discussed how her goals and mindsets around exercise changed as she progressed through the different phases of her exercise journey. 
On this episode of My Evolved Life, I welcome back Laura Davies, Life Coach and Nutritionist. We talked about how to create meaningful habits, routines, and mindsets to get us out of this pandemic in a good place. 
On this episode of My Evolved Life, I welcome back Cinder Smith, Registered Psychologist.We talked about how we can get through the COVID-19 pandemic more resilient, how to create meaningful routines, and why we should consume less social media and news.
On today's episode, I have a conversation with Tracey Delfs, a mindfulness and meditation coach. We get into topics like the importance of being mindful, how to begin a meditation practice and why multitasking doesn't work.---Tracey’s passion is to teach others ‘how’ to calm their minds and ‘how’ to live more in the present moment.Tracey is the founder of Over the last two decades she has been changing people’s lives as a stress management and life coach, mindfulness teacher and mental wellness workshop facilitator to employees, Olympic athletes and the general public. Some of the organizations she has worked with include Shell Canada, The City of Calgary, Alberta Children’s hospital, as well as Canada’s National Alpine, Free-style, Biathlon and Surf team. Tracey has been working in the wellness industry since receiving her degree with a major in Health & Wellness Promotion in 1991. She is a Certified Life Coach and Resilience Coach and Trainer with The HeartMath™ Institute. To learn more about Tracey, visit her website at: www.balancequest.comTo learn more about her program: www.calmmindprogram.comInstagram:
On this week's episode I welcome back Cinder Smith, Registered Psychologist. We talked about the importance of taking care of mental health through unpredictable times, how to communicate with children about Coronavirus, and how to come out of this on the positive side.
On this week's episode, I have a conversation with Victoria Smith, a stress reduction coach. We got into topics like "how to take control of stress and anxiety", "how to manage stress during unpredictable times" and "the long-term implications of stress and anxiety".---I’m Victoria Smith and before the age of 30 I had shingles twice. I don’t think I’m unlike most professional women out there. We try and juggle it all and we’re holding ourselves to impossible standards. I’m sick of it.Not only have I experienced shingles twice, but I’ve suffered from depression and anxiety (postpartum with Baby #1, prenatal with Baby #2, and your run of the mill depression to boot!), worked a crazy 60 hour a week corporate job, am an adult child of divorce and oh I’m also just living my life. And I’m NOT special. I don’t tell you all this to make you feel sorry for me, I tell you this because we are the same.The good news is that through counselling, coaching and a lot of personal development work, I’m on the other side of this. What exactly does that look like? Being on “the other side”? That means that now when I go through stressful situations, I bounce back FAST. It means that my resiliency muscles are ripped (because my abs sure as heck are not)! It means that I’ve developed the skills, the systems and the supports in my life so that I genuinely believe that most days are good days. There are very few outliers.YOU can do this as well. You can bounce back faster. You can live a more peaceful life. You can actually enjoy your daily life. To learn more about Victoria, check out her website:
On this week's episode, I have a conversation with Sarah Stewart, a ballet instructor. We got into topics like how to overcome the fear of exercise, why it's never too late to start and the importance of exercise on longevity.8:45 - Why is it important to start exercising regardless of age?12:21 - How do you get over the fear of starting to exercise?25:24 - What is different about people who are active their whole lives?29:58 - What can you learn from someone who's active in their 80s?37:05 - What kind of mindset do you need about exercise before you start?42:21 - Should moms feel guilty for taking time for themselves?--- Sarah is a professionally trained dancer originally from the UK. She began her dancing career at the age of six and has experience in ballet, modern and tap. She now teaches students at the School of Alberta Ballet and is the visionary behind and founder of Balletiques.Balletiques was created because Sarah wanted to show people that ballet is an amazing form of exercise and that anyone can do it. Balletiques fuses ballet and fitness to create fun, accessible, and approachable workouts. Using her expertise and knowledge, Sarah teaches you the basic fundamentals of ballet, using real terminology and demonstrates how to do steps safely and correctly.To learn more about Sarah, check out her website:
On this week's episode, I have a conversation with Laura Davies, a mindset coach. We got into topics like how to change our relationship with pain, how to get rid of old habits and how to build new ones.6:16 - What are the biggest mental blocks for moms?8:27 - What is a general coaching session really like?12:27 - What do you need to know about getting rid of bad habits?15:43 - What is a technique you Can use to find presence?17:29 - How do you change your relationship with pain?20:11 - What can I do to help reinforce affirmations and thoughts?25:12 - How do you begin to build new positive habits?32:24 - What can you do to develop more self-awareness?35:47 - What is Neurolinguistic Programming (NLP)?42:34 - How do we build resilience and stop playing the victim?49:38 - How do your actions and beliefs influence your children?
On today's episode, I have a conversation with Karen Quinn, a Chiropractor of 14 years, about what the chiropractic practice is really about. We talked about how the body is one large interconnected system, how problems in one area of the body can affect others, and the natural curvature of the spine.6:36 - What is the Chiropractic practice really about?8:57 - How do they know whether to see a Chiropractor or a Physiotherapist?12:14 - Can can you be sure that the Chiropractic practice is safe?15:59 - What do the terms "balance" and "alignment" actually mean?18:53 - How do our lifestyles take us out of balance?24:50 - What are the natural curves in our spine and why are they important?32:20 - How can wearing heel highs affect your lower back?36:15 - What symptoms suggest that you should go see a chiropractor?38:15 - How much pain should you be in before you go to see a chiropractor?43:55 - What can you do daily to keep your body feeling great?---Karen is a Chiropractor with 14 years of experience. She's also got her 200 hour Yoga Teacher Certification. Karen is interested in maximizing human potential and is dedicated to helping others tap into their potential by ensuring individuals have optimal nervous system health, body balance and lifestyle support to not only add years to their lives, but more importantly, life to their years. Karen believes that true health to me is about function and can not be defined by the absence of illness. She uses gentle techniques to facilitate postural correction and sustainable change to help individuals live a life of optimal health and vitality. Karen meets you where you are at and together with you, creates a plan to move you forward and reach the health goals you have set.
On this week's episode, I have a conversation with Tara Abel, a Postnatal Fitness Specialist, about what mothers experience during and after birth. We talked about how diastasis recti affects all mothers, the "Four Ps" of postpartum, and exercises to consider after birth.7:04 - What is Diastasis Recti?10:44 - Is there a range in severity?16:34 - How do men best support their partners through postpartum?19:04 - What are the symptoms of Diastasis Recti and pelvic floor issues?23:10 - What happens if the symptoms aren't addressed?25:52 - What do all moms need to hear about diastasis recti?27:09 - How do you find a professional to help you?32:34 - What are the types of specialists that can help?35:04 - What exercises are generally safe?40:28 - Are bodyweight exercises automatically safe?42:21 - How do you know when you're ready for exercise?45:55 - How to shift your mindset to valuing exercise?50:10 - What are some tricks to getting exercise into your schedule?---Tara was an athlete growing up but struggled to maintain her athleticism after becoming a mom. What started as the pursuit of weight loss turned into a life-changing shift in mindset, strength, confidence, falling in love with lifting weights, and wanting to make it attainable for other women to do the same.She became a Certified Personal Trainer with a passion for taking the overwhelm out of fitness for women and supporting them in every stage. She coaches busy women to make realistic, moderate, sustainable changes that meet them wherever they’re at. After overcoming severe diastasis recti postpartum, she became especially passionate about empowering women with education on core and pelvic floor health and was certified as a Postnatal Fitness Specialist and a Pregnancy and Postpartum Athleticism Coach.A mom to four wild and lovely young children, Tara understands the importance and difficulty of finding a balance and of looking at fitness from a holistic lens. She wants every woman to be able to chase after their kids, say yes to every activity, and to feel free and empowered in their body. When Tara’s not at the gym, you can be sure she’s spending time with her family, doing home renos, or getting overly competitive while playing board games.Website: | Instagram: @taraabelfitness
On today's episode, I have a conversation with Alex Gravel, a private studio owner, about how box (traditional) gyms are failing people. We talked about how intimidating gyms can be, how gyms build their business around you not showing up, and how to succeed with your exercise goals.4:00 - What are the biggest barriers that clients face?6:10 - What do you think about the all or nothing approach?8:03 - What kind of intimidation do your clients feel about the gym?9:05 - What is the scariest thing you've ever witnessed at the gym?11:46 - What are the traits of your successful clients?14:03 - How do you approach the scale?15:25 - What is your take on metrics like BMI?19:07 - What are your thoughts on the traditional gym business model?22:43 - What are the first steps someone can take to begin exercising?25:37 - Is the health industry failing society as a whole?28:17 - What are your thoughts on dieting?31:00 - If someone only had 15 minutes, what should they do?33:36 - What is the biggest difference between the gym and your facility?36:00 - Is it important to have a strong bond with your clients?---Alex is the owner and head personal trainer at The LOFT Fitness. She opened the LOFT fitness in 2017 after years of personal training in gyms around Calgary. She has a BAH in Health Studies from Queen's University and is a certified Personal Trainer with Canadian Fitness Professionals. Fitness and Nutrition are two of Alex's passions in life and she plans to continue her journey as an entrepreneur growing and expanding the LOFT Brand. Growing up in the small island paradise of St. Vincent and the Grenadines, Alex has always had an active lifestyle – whether snorkeling the vibrant coral reefs or hiking through dense rainforest to beautiful waterfalls – health and fitness has always been in the forefront of her life. This active lifestyle was the catalyst for her endeavor in Health Sciences and her personal trainer certification. Having worked for a few years as a personal trainer, she realized she wanted to offer fitness a bit differently and decided to branch out and open her own gym. Small classes or one on one sessions inside a private studio allow for a more personalized experience – an experience which is less daunting for the newcomer and helps keep clients on track and heading towards their goals.Her dedication to health and fitness extends beyond the gym and into her kitchen and continued active lifestyle in Calgary, where she frequents the Rockies, hiking and skiing in her spare time. Alex believes that tailoring fitness plans to fit each individual’s needs is fundamental to their success and her charismatic personality drives her clients to achieve their goals. 
On today's episode, I have a breathtaking conversation with a Breathing Educator, Lorraine Clifford, about the importance of identifying poor breathing habits and correcting them. We talked about how poor breathing habits can have long term effects, how mouth breathing affects children,  and how correcting your breathing habits can change your life.3:20 - Why do we need to be more conscious about our breathing?5:53 - What are the symptoms of poor breathing habits?9:11 - What does proper breathing look like?14:28 - Why do we have to be even more conscious of our breath during exercise?16:05 - How would you instruct someone through a good breath?21:07 - How do poor breathing habits cause sleep apnea?24:38 - How do you stay on your side when you're sleeping?31:22 - How breathing affects the body's ability to detoxify33:11 - What are the exercises you can do at home to repair your breathing patterns?---Lorraine started her life as the fourth child in a family of ten. She is a Mom of 4 and a grandmother of 13. Lorraine worked in the dental field as an Orthodontist assistant for 35 years.She was diagnosed with cancer at the young age of 36 when health, or regaining her health got pushed to the forefront of her life. During her 14 years gracing the doors of the Tom Baker Cancer Center in Calgary she started taking courses on alternative health and eventually dove in with both feet, went back to school full time at the age of 52 to get the designation of CHN Certified Holistic Nutrition Consultant with extended nutritional certificates.She continued her learning with German New Medicine, Reiki Master, Metabolic Balance Coach and most recently Buteyko Breathing Educator. Lorraine is passionate about helping others understand how they can change their lives, become healthier and have a better quality of life. 
On today's episode, I have an eye-opening conversation with Cinder Smith, a registered psychologist, about mental health. We got into fascinating topics like the difference between mood and emotion, how to use your emotions as data, and why we shouldn't avoid our emotions.5:41 - What is mental health?8:04 - The impact of social media on mental health11:40 - Comfortable vs. uncomfortable emotions15:31 - How do you start to better understand your emotions?18:55 - The difference between mood and emotion21:41 - What is psychology really like?23:36 - What are the tell tale signs that someone needs help?26:07 - How to communicate with children about mental health29:40 - Where does the stigma around emotions come from?34:39 - Who are the first people to talk to when you feel like you need help?36:41 - How do we get ahead of mental health and when is the right time to seek help?39:17 - How do you regulate your emotions?42:38 - Can we stop characterizing emotions as "male" or "female"?45:19 - What are the things you can do to positively influence your mental health?51:54 - How do we stop caring what other people do and achieve?55:23 - Does perspective influence mental health?---Cinder Smith is a Registered Psychologist with the College of Alberta Psychologists. She graduated from the University of Lethbridge with a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Psychology, and then moved back to her home town, Calgary, where she completed her Master in Counseling Psychology Degree.Cinder’s internship and residency was completed at Calgary Counseling Centre, as well as in a private practice setting. She is also a member of the Psychologists’ Association of Alberta, and offers a lot of her time volunteering for various events for the Association.Cinder has been working in the areas of assessment, consultation, and therapy with individuals for over 12 years in various roles and environments including non-profit and private practice settings, family medicine clinics, hospitals, forensic, employee assistance programs, and university institutions. Cinder believes taking care of one’s mental health is as important as taking care of ones physical health! When she isn’t working, Cinder enjoys spending her time with her family, kids, and friends. She is a former ballet trained dancer for over 15 years and currently stays active running, lifting weights and is also a fitness instructor.Cinder is also a major sports fanatic, she loves to cook, and is known to have a spunky sense of humour!
On today's episode, I had Shawna Curry, Registered Nurse and Health Expert and we talked about the importance of sleep. We talked about how sleep is the foundation of sleep, how to create good sleep habits, and the importance of sleep routines.7:04 - Shawna's 7 Pillars of Health9:50 - Why is sleep important?11:57 - Long term implications of not getting enough sleep13:59 - How much sleep do you need?17:04 - How do you manage your circadian clock working a shift job?20:51 - Quality vs. Quantity25:52 - What is happening while you're sleeping28:38 - Creating an environment that promotes good sleep30:58 - Screen time before bed is bad (myth or fact)?33:17 - "Tired but wired"37:01 - REM vs. Non-REM sleep41:22 - Can you "catch up" on sleep?43:58 - How do you know when you've had good quality sleep?---Shawna has made her mark in the health and wellness space as an Amazon best selling author, International speaker, through podcast appearances, corporate wellness programs and personalized health coaching.This variety of experience has built a community of clients who benefit from her intimate and inspiring health and wellness information. Her writing has been published in Forbes, Inc., Impact and Bloom Magazines. Her company, Health Redesigned, has been dedicated to total-health solutions and all of the aspects of healthy living including fitness, sleep, nutrition, self-help and overall lifestyle strategies. You can follow Shawna at
In today's episode we had Sheldon Smith, a very accomplished marathon runner. He shared with us how he found himself when he found running. We got into topics like how mental is an everyday occurrence, how comparison is the thief of joy, and he really shared with us how he transitioned from a sedentary lifestyle to an active one.7:06 - Sheldon's metabolic age11:00 - The motivation behind going from sedentary to active15:28 - The biggest difference in his mental health18:22 - Message to someone struggling with mental health24:29 - Tips to being a competent runner28:51 - What preparation looks like 32:41 - Thoughts on running and knee pain ---Sheldon overcame a very sedentary lifestyle when he found his love for running. Through this transformation, he lost over 70 pounds.In his sedentary days, he was a heavy smoker and drinker and recreational drug user. And now, through a commitment and dedication to change, he's become a very accomplished marathon runner with achievements like a sub-40 10 km and 1:30 half. As someone who has put thousands and thousands of kilometers on his legs, he is more than qualified to speak about how physical activity can benefit your life.
In today's episode, I had a deep conversation with Beth Davis, a global Yoga instructor, about how the practice of Yoga changed her life. We covered topics such as the importance of connecting to your breath, finding comfort in discomfort, and the importance of finding posture and alignment.4:00 - What it means to be present5:29 - Progress through depression9:02 - What meditation is to Beth13:39 - How to begin taking control of mental health20:33 - Limiting beliefs imposed on us by others25:30 - Signs you need to correct your posture27:54 - How to get more in tune with your body31:58 - How Beth stays ahead of mental health36:26 - Traits of a good Yoga instructor40:33 - Why we need to push our boundaries---Beth is a yoga teacher from Canada, presently sharing her practice, her spirituality, and her life.She is happiest moving courageously though her life with love and something to focus her energy on. She found yoga at a time in her life when she was suffering from anxiety, depression, and suicidal thoughts. The practice of asana quickly began to change her life. It provided her with a foundation that she could trust in. She enjoys using her body as a gateway to the present, allowing the past and the future to slip away quietly. Many of her accomplishments on her mat have come simply from her belief that she should be able to succeed because she was born with everything that she needed.She has completed more than 1500 hours of training and continues to study with knowledgeable teachers in the industry, including Kim Tang & Esak Garcia. She has been teaching yoga full time in Asia, Europe and North America since she graduated almost 10 years ago. Her competence as a teacher comes from experience. But the passion and drive for what she does comes from within her.---You're watching to My Evolved Life, a podcast that simplifies health and fitness, and helps you maximize your life.My name is Vu Nguyen and I'm the creator of the Evolution Training System.We're so lucky to be living in the information age, meaning it’s easier than ever to access information and find answers to any questions you may have.But, isn't it confusing when you read information that's conflicting, or worse yet, just sounds wrong? I'll be sitting down with industry professionals to give you clarity and leave you with tangible actions you can immediately take to improve your physical, mental, and psychological health.
In today's episode, I had a raw and passionate conversation with Tish Duffy, an online coach, about how to create successful goals, habits, and routines. We covered topics such as extrinsic vs. intrinsic goals, how to create manageable and achievable goals, and how thinking about your health today has long term benefits.11:27 - How to find the right trainer for you17:40 - Habits of successful clients23:28 - How to overcome limiting beliefs26:47 - How to overcome fear of the gym31:21 - The biggest exercise myth for women36:29 - What you can do if you're not ready for the gym 41:27 - The top 5 non-aesthetic benefits of exercise45:04 - The long term benefits of exercise---Tish is an online coach with 25 years of industry experience and is also the owner of Strong Bodies by Tish. She's been recognized by Impact Magazine as both a top trainer and top instructor. She's got a ton of industry knowledge to share with us in this episode.Website: @trainwithtish---You're watching to My Evolved Life, a podcast that simplifies health and fitness, and helps you maximize your life.My name is Vu Nguyen and I'm the creator of the Evolution Training System.We're so lucky to be living in the information age, meaning it’s easier than ever to access information and find answers to any questions you may have.But, isn't it confusing when you read information that's conflicting, or worse yet, just sounds wrong? I'll be sitting down with industry professionals to give you clarity and leave you with tangible actions you can immediately take to improve your physical, mental, and psychological health.
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