How to kickstart your resolutions and goals for 2016 on the east side

…before ultimately giving up two weeks later. (Kudos to those who make it to February!)

If the definition of insanity is repetition with the expectation of different results, then a large majority of us are well on our way to being institutionalized. Why we resolve to get healthy and improve our wellness new year after new year is a head-scratcher. But, let’s do the dance one more time, shall we 2016?

Toronto's east side has plenty of options to exercise your mind, body and soul and learn to feel feel better as we enter a new year. Check out these options for cleansing, fitness and expanding your skill sets.



According to Pulp Kitchen, a liquid diet can help the body work on (and out) the deposits that accumulate and interrupt our regular digestion. Ranging from three to 30 days, Pulp Kitchen offers cleanses that can help with detoxification, bowel health, skin improvement and a variety of other specific ailments. Of note: Pulp Kitchen suggests that the process of detoxing can result in feeling worse before you feel better as your liver purges toxins back into the blood stream. But don’t be deterred – I imagine it can’t be worse than you will feel the morning after New Year’s Eve. A 3 day cleanse will set you back approximately $129.

717 Queen St. E


Leslieville's Belmonte Raw offers several different cleanse options rich in colour and crisp in packaging, that cater to every different level of intensity and some of which solid include food. Even better, Belmonte Raw makes chocolate. Not quite sure how that fits into your cleanse, but it is organic, fair trade, and free of additives, preservatives, sugar, dairy, gluten, and animal products. Though the prices are steep, Belmonte Raw does offer delivery in case you’re already off to a great start and skipped your morning run. 1 day cleanses start at $70.

1022 Queen St. E



Riverside's Forme Fitness provides comprehensive services ranging from small group, semi-private and private training, massage therapy and nutrition and lifestyle coaching. The space is immaculate and extremely impressive — at 5500 square feet — with high quality equipment. Forme also offers the first and only indoor 100 foot, three-lane turf track to perform their signature metabolic workout. If any gym can transform your lazy self to Instagram perfection, Forme stands the best chance. Note that your custom designed Chris Hemsworth/Alessandra Ambrosio body will not come cheap, however, but for those lacking motivation, the extra dollars may well be worth their weight in flab.

100 Broadview Ave. 


Primal Movement is an 8,000 square-foot space spread out over two floors that offers a great variety to keep you stimulated. In addition to the usual gym activities (which I imagine as lifting weights and staring at oneself in the mirror), Primal offers team training classes, yoga, spinning and MMA training all under one roof. The best thing about Primal is the price; compared to similar gyms that offer a personalized feel, you can join for only $600 annually.

388 Carlaw Ave.


Some of us need a personal trainer pushing us as hard as possible until we’re ready to cry and/or die to stay motivated. Others need exactly the opposite - to feel that exercise isn’t all no pain no gain and that it can be both fun and invigorating. energyXchange has branded themselves as the un-gym, committed to educating and inspiring individuals to become healthier in mind, body and spirit. They adhere to the principles of functional training, muscle confusion and the mind/body connection through classes such as Gravity Strength with Kettlebells, Joga Blast (yoga for jocks) and LongStrong. energyXchange also provides physiotherapy, chiropractic care, acupuncture and massage. For those of you who will only last the month of January, the $30 for 30 days pass is more than affordable. 

698 Queen St. E



Run by naturopathic doctors Sue Love and Sapna Patel Flower, Restore combines integrative and conventional medicine to custom-tailor a wellness plan suited to your lifestyle. Put balance in your body and mind with services at this Leslieville clinic that include registered massage therapy, chiropractic care and psychotherapy. Clients also have access to nutrition counselling, nutrient therapy and acupuncture all in a personalized and caring environment where you can come in and feel like you're going to be well taken care of. Most extended insurance plans will have coverage for services — check yours for details and give them a call.

989 Queen St. E


If you’re like me and prefer to improve the wellness of your mind rather than body (because 5:30 a.m. is just too early), joining a local book club or writers’ group is an excellent way to broaden your horizons while engaging with members of the community. 


The Joy of Writing is a weekly writers' workshop and gathering where you read, write, laugh and inspire. Call Lucille at 416-461-3700 for more information. Tuesday evenings at the Ralph Thornton Centre, Mezzanine Level from 7:00 p.m. to 8:45 p.m.

765 Queen St. E


The Ashdale Writers Group at the Gerrard and Ashdale Public Library meets on alternate Saturdays starting at 10:30 a.m. for a 90-minute session where you can share writing, review and comment on others' writing, talk about process and tell your story within a supportive environment. Call 416-393-7717 for information.

1432 Gerrard St. E


If you enjoy reading a range of literature and talking to others about books, this group is for you. Upcoming dates: Jan. 28, Feb. 25, Mar 31 for 60 minutes. Need more information? Call 416-393-7717.

1432 Gerrard St. E


The Family Book Club will follow books that will be nominated for the 2016 Ontario Library Association's Silver Birch Express prize. Upcoming dates: Jan. 9, Feb. 6, March 5, April 2. o register, call 416-393-7783.

1675 Danforth Ave.



The Purple Purl is beneficial to one’s wellness for two reasons; while sharpening your mind by learning a new skill, that new skill happens to be both relaxing and meditative.  For beginners and pros, grandmothers and hipsters, The Purl has classes for knitting, crocheting, needle felting and spinning - there’s even a class for quick mittens (!). The beginner class costs $60 for two hours and yarn and needles are included.

1162 Queen St. E


RAWspace offers a fully equipped eight-bench jewellery studio, the space offers bench rentals for the qualified jeweller or workshops for beginners and those curious about making jewellery. They also offer a variety of project-based jewellery and craft workshops like weaving and drawing.

270 Carlaw Ave.