Just breathe: A wellness weekend with the 2017 Ford Explorer

Well guys, summer is officially over this week.

We all say it, but summer really did fly by. I truly did have an amazing summer but I couldn’t help but feel overwhelmed a few times.  Aside from my blog, I have a “real job” as well, where I work full time Monday to Friday. In addition to all that, I teach fitness classes on the side and when I’m not teaching, I make an effort to go actually do a class. Because of my busy schedule I just wanted to relax, breathe, and clear my calendar for once.

Well, I got the opportunity to do so this past weekend. Ford Canada reached out and leant me the 2017 Ford Explorer for the weekend along with an itinerary of fun and relaxing things to do.  I’ve driven the Explorer a few times before, and it’s actually the number-one large utility vehicle in Canada.  The car is huge (seven seater), but its roomy accommodations were just what I needed to take the stress out of my life for the weekend.

I got the car Friday night and started doing some mental wellness stuff on the Saturday. I taught a step class at a local gym in my city and since it was cold and rainy that day (the rain-sensing wipers, which use an optical sensor that detects moisture, really came in handy), the heated steering wheel was just what I needed to keep my hands nice and toasty. After my class I took full advantage of the multi-contour seats that gave me a much-needed massage as I headed home to shower (the massage seats with the heaters turned on, plus the heated steering wheel = life changing).

In the middle of the afternoon I met my bestie at The Glam Bar here in Winnipeg for some blowouts, because nothing is more relaxing than having your hair washed and styled by someone else. Since the salon is located on busy Corydon Avenue, parallel parking was a breeze thanks to the enhanced active park assist feature. The 2017 Explorer uses its standard system of 12 ultrasonic sensors to help navigate into nearly all parking situations. I like to think of myself as a parallel parking pro, but since I drive a sedan normally, navigating this huge SUV into a parallel parking spot is kinda scary. The Explorer scans for suitable parallel or perpendicular parking spaces and then calculates the trajectory and automatically steers the car into the space. No more stressing about tight parallel parking jobs!

After we got our hair done we went back to my place, played with Ziggy and did our makeup. After we headed to Wasabi Sabi on Taylor for some sushi for dinner. Since there’s a ton of construction around the restaurant due to the underpass being built, the Blind Spot Information System was super helpful getting us there safely. This uses sensors to detect traffic in a driver’s blind spot, giving you a visual warning (either on the side mirrors or the entertainment console) if vehicles are detected.

The next day I picked up my boyfriend and we headed out to Pineridge Hollow for brunch. The popular rustic restaurant is located in Bird’s Hill Provincial Park so the 2.3L EcoBoost engine with intelligent All Wheel Drive got us there in a breeze. That, combined with Apple Carplay, let us get there quickly and safely since I didn’t have to mess around with my phone to use Spotify or text someone back (it’s so cool, you just talk to the car to send a text back to someone).

Interior of the 2017 Ford Explorer

After brunch we headed to Winnipeg’s top relaxation spot, Thermea for an afternoon of their thermal experience. I’ve been there a bunch of times, but the spot never gets old since it’s  the most beautiful urban oasis. After an afternoon’s worth of hot tubbing, sauna-ing, stream rooming and plain ‘ol relaxing, we hit the Explorer and headed back to my place to just chill on the coach and watch TV.

Like a lot of cities right now, our roads here in Winnipeg are filled with construction and because of that, I would rather just stay home than deal with traffic. The 2017 Ford Explorer really let me centre myself while driving and relax for once (seriously, those massage seats do wonders for your mind and body). I also want to note another cool feature that the car has that I didn’t use. The FordPass app connects you to the vehicle via your smartphone, where you can check your fuel level, locate your vehicle, remote start, and lock and unlock your car. It also can help you find an available parking spot near you and call for Roadside Assistance if you need it.

A huge thank you to Ford Canada for the much-needed wellness weekend. Although the weather was bad this weekend, I had the most relaxing, fantastic three days. All because of an SUV.

What are your favourite activities for relaxing?

Huge thank you to Ford Canada for loaning me the 2017 Ford Explorer for the weekend and covering the costs of the activities.

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