Afiya Francisco is a Style Expert, television and fashion personality, speaker, and brand ambassador. The Style House is a multimedia platform designed to help women approach their personal style with confidence, simplicity & joy. 

Sponsored Post: MEC Outdoor Nation Weekend

Photo: Anna Lisa Sang.

The Issue

According to Stats Canada, in 2013, 60% of 20-34 year olds were only moderately active during leisure time and 40% were considered completely inactive.

The Solution

MEC Outdoor Nation. A grown up campout that invites young adults to socialize under the stars and present innovative solutions to spread the love to get up, get moving and get outside to their fellow youth. MEC will provide $10,000 in funding for the selected grassroots ideas that emerge from the weekend.

Saturday, June 27, 2015 - Sunday, June 28, 2015. Evergreen Brick Works, Toronto.

Photo: Anna Lisa Sang.

Perhaps unsurprisingly, I was never much of a camper, though I did endure a week at an all-girls and even made the trek up to Algonquin (hardcore, I know). But, despite my inclination toward creature comforts, growing up, my summers were spent almost entirely outdoors – bike riding, baseball, swimming and exploring. I’ve always loved being outside but I get how unscheduled leisurely days eventually give way to deadlines and commitments. I’ve found that the right gear can really make all the difference, especially when you’re (re)introducing outdoor activity into your life. 

Photo: Anna Lisa Sang.

A smartwatch like, the super sleek, Garmin Vivoactive Activity Tracker ($330) not only tracks your movement and allows you to create goals but it will even buzz to alert you when you’ve been inactive for an hour. A stylish motivator to get moving. Nike Zoom Wildhorse GTX Trail runners ($165) are ultralight and have tapered lugs that can handle trails and rainy-day running. Adidas Supernova tights ($62) look too cool yet ergonomic fit and wicking fabric offer practical comfort. Tough food-grade stainless steel makes this Klean Kanteen Wide Stainless Steel bottle ($29) perfect for rugged, outdoor adventures (photo above). All available at MEC.

Photo: Anna Lisa Sang.

The promise of live bands, catered cuisine and swag bag is enough to get even non-campers sourcing sleeping bags. Barebones Forest LED Rechargeable lantern ($85) has a USB output to charge your phone and burns clean electrons instead of kerosene. No need to sacrifice the comforts of civilization, enjoy a cup of tea in this double-walled, stainless steel Innate Camp cup ($17). Organize a game of cards and brush up your survival skills with these Mountaineers “The Don’t Get Lost Out There!” cards ($10). All available at MEC.

Get up. Get Moving. Get Outside. Repeat.

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