Home Security

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A person who has their house burglarized feels violated. Their oasis from the crazy world has been breached and many victims never feel the same sense of comfort when in their home as they did before the burglary.

Burglary is considered a property crime and it is therefore not very high on the agenda of law enforcement, especially in large Cities. The headline grabbing shootings, stabbings robberies etc are what law enforcement concentrates on because they are crimes against persons and they are a threat to lives.

Everyone should take some security measures in order to prevent burglary. The harder the task seems to a burglar, the less he/she will target your home. Don’t think that it won’t happen to you because you are poor, appear poor or have nothing to steal, many burglars are chancers and are willing to take a risk on breaking into a house or apartment that is easy, in the hope that something of value will be obtained.

You don’t want to find yourself in a burglary/home invasion situation. Technically, this situation occurs when a burglar enters your home and you or another authorized person is in residence. It is very dangerous and if you have never considered what you would do in such a situation, you will be at the mercy of the criminal. You may end up at their mercy anyway, but if you have a plan, you have a better chance of a favorable outcome. The best thing to have in your home for such a situation is a firearm, although the usefulness of the firearm depends on the particular laws in your State of residence. Bats and clubs can also be a good defence tool.  If you do possess a firearm for such a situation, make sure that you know the law pertaining to this situation, you are sufficiently familiar with the weapon that you can use it and most importantly, if the situation dictates, be mentally prepared to use it in defence of yourself and family. I know many people are anti gun and that is ok. It’s your personal choice if you want to take the chance of becoming a helpless victim. The criminals don’t have these negative feeling about guns, or any weapons. Just remember that even if you manage to call 911, the police response time is going to be measured in minutes, not seconds. If you do have firearms in the house, don’t tell anyone about them.

 

Security Measures

Starting from the outside, get some light on your front yard, motion sensor flood lights are good. Trim any bushes so that people cannot hide behind them, trim the bush from the base, up to about 2 ft, so that you can clearly see the base. You could consider planting thorny bushes and hedges around the perimeter of your back yard, if the bushes are large and thorny enough, they may be enough to make a burglar think twice. Motion sensor lights in your backyard are also advisable.

Because most people like a private backyard, they fence the yard with fencing that blocks the view of people looking in from outside. This achieves privacy, but is also attractive to the burglar, as he/she can break into your house in privacy. The rear of a house is a popular entry point for burglars. With apartments, unless it is on the ground floor, there is only one way in, the front door. Many people would be surprised at how quick and easy it is to kick in a front door, or pry one open. I prefer a reinforced door frame which will withstand a lot of force. The door frame is normally the weak point.

Windows are also a favored entry point for burglars, they are easy to force and as a last resort, the burglar can just break the glass to gain entry. I think that windows are the weakest part of the house. There really isn’t very much you can do about this situation except to fit security bars on your windows. Many people don’t like security bars because they are ugly and they also stop you using the windows as an emergency exit, in case of fire etc.

Security cameras, recording to a DVD, can be fitted to your house internally and externally. These systems can now be self installed reasonably easily, many work on WiFi and they are not too expensive. The cameras can be motion activated and will record the burglar. Cameras will not give any specific protection against burglary unless you place signs or stickers in your yard. The cameras should really be covert, so the burglar doesn’t know about them. The recordings can be used for the apprehension and prosecution of the burglar. Catching a criminal after the event is not as desirable as preventing the burglary in the first place.

Alarms may put some burglars off, but most know that they have a few minutes to get in and out before any response to the alarm activation, but it does place a limit on their time. If the burglar has planned the crime, they will know exactly what they want to get and where it is, so they can be quick. This is why you should limit your visitors to highly trusted friends and family and people carrying out essential work on your house only.

When you are in your house, you can use devices like security door wedges and door braces to give extra security to you doors, or place the devices on all doors giving access to the outside, except the front door of course.  If you have windows that lock, keep them locked when not in use, consider installing security glass and consider having ground floor windows alarmed.

It all sounds like living a life under siege and I understand the feeling. You should evaluate your local crime maps (they can normally be found online, try the local police website) and decide what measures you think you need. Being prepared is better than being a victim. Don’t be afraid of reporting suspicious people in your area. The suspicion begins with strangers seen walking slowly along the street, casually looking at the houses as they go. The walk appears aimless and there should be no reason for a person who doesn’t live in the area to be shuffling along the street, glancing around at houses. If you see one of these shufflers suddenly start to walk towards a house with a purpose and disappear into the back yard, call the police. Sometimes the suspicion is generated by seeing an unknown vehicle cruising slowly in your residential neighborhood, especially during the day, after people who work the traditional 9 AM to 5 PM have gone to work. If you are wrong, don’t worry, you have a right to be suspicious. The police should respond, and maybe that alone will encourage burglars to find somewhere else to target.

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The 40 Hour Work Week

gray scale photo of gears

The 40 hour work week is not a permanent fixture.. Although it is now commonly accepted and people are so used to it that anything less is seen as part time when working for an employer, and  is penalized. Lower pay, no benefits, no sick time, no vacation time, no overtime pay and the list goes on.

 

The 40 hour work week came into being during the industrial revolution, when people were previously working up to 100 hours per week  on tedious, dangerous, repetitive tasks while being paid a pittance. The 40 hour week was seen as wonderful.

 

Before the industrial revolution, people worked a more nature based schedule, because many were involved in agriculture and there was also a lack of good artificial light. The work day would begin at first light and finish at last light. The work conditions were physically intensive, but at least people could work surrounded by nature rather than the miserable, dangerous, depressing and unhealthy conditions of the industrial revolution factories. When I read of the conditions that many people had to live and work in, “living death” is the only thing that I can think of.

 

There seems to have been a golden age of the employee, roughly between the early 1940s and the early 1970s. Well paid work was plentiful and while not always satisfying, it would offer a good lifestyle to many, one person could support a whole family of 4 or 5 on their pay and people seemed happier with the 40 hour work week model. I don’t know what happened, but that age is long gone. Real wages have been stagnant for a long time, while prices have risen and job security is a thing of the past. Something has messed up the benefits system where you now find that your employee medical/dental/vision insurance is becoming worthless but premiums have risen dramatically.

 

It seems that we have been in the tech revolution for a while now. Since the advent of computers, many jobs that were once considered industrial are now technology based and require fewer people and less or different skills. A good example is  the printing industry which was very labor intensive and was seen as a skilled and well paid occupation not so long ago. It required many people who specialized in different skills such as typesetters and book binders, machine operators etc. Technology has led to a 43% drop in print industry employment in the last 20 years alone. Part of this decline can be attributed to digital books and digital methods of communication, desktop publishing, where a person can now produce his/her own business cards at home, direct to press typesetting systems where a computer operator can design the print job on screen and then send the job direct to a printing press, cutting out several jobs in the process. The industry was very unionized, but even the powerful print unions couldn’t disrupt advancements in technology.

 

It seems that some time soon, we will be forced to rethink our relationship with work and the 40 hour work week. The technology to shorten the work week exists now in many areas of work but the issue is that in today’s society,  less hours mean less paycheck. Artificial intelligence and robots are developing rapidly and once an android type of machine like “data” in Star Trek can be built, it will be able to put a lot of humans out of work. There is already a lot of speculation about driverless vehicles, personal, taxis, trucks and the like. Some testing is already underway. One could speculate that a passenger aircraft could now fly itself but the public is not ready to trust such a machine yet. Pilots, don’t get too complacent and elitist about job security.

 

What can replace the 40 hour work week? What can replace work itself?.  It is not so much a question of what activities will replace work but what will allow us to earn money. Many European countries already have a less than 40 hour work week, generous vacation allowances of  a minimum 25 days and they still find that business can be profitable. A universal basic income is attractive in theory, but because humans are human, they will find a way to mess that up somehow for the benefit of a few, to the detriment of many.

 

The 40 hour week model is at least 100 years old now and probably needs to be revised. Most people dislike work and dislike being there, although there are plenty of people who can convincingly lie that they like their work, very few do. I haven’t got a solution yet,  but I think that earning money will not look like the current 40 hour week model 100 years from now. As for the androids, we will have to discover their limitations and exploit those limitations to earn a living.

 

I think that the two words that sum up the current trend is “greed” and “need”. The ones that “have” are greedy and the ones that don’t have, still need to earn that pittance in order to survive. It is up to the individual to find his/her solution to this. If you are waiting for politicians, (of any flavor) to find a solution for you, you will be waiting forever.

 

An additional thought, I acknowledge that the industrial revolution sweatshop system of production still exists in many parts of the world and I feel for them. Part of the blame is us in the developed world wanting and buying the products that are produced, and ignoring the fact that these companies have offshored their operations for only one reason, to maximize already record profits….are there any limits to greed?.

Manifest Your Desires, The 2 Cup Method

clear water drops

There is a method of manifesting your desires called the 2 cup method. The method is based upon the idea that we have many different parallel realities running at the same time and the idea that in quantum physics, a particle can be in more than one place at the same time.

There is also the strange situation that the outcome of a quantum experiment can change, depending on whether or not the person decides  to measure some property of the particles involved. This suggests that it is the observer that is exerting control over the behaviour of particles. Quantum theory also hold that an entity can be particle and wave at the same time.

 

Dr Masaru Emoto conducted studies on  water for a long time He published a series of photographs in his book which are said to be frozen water crystals that have been subjected to human intentions/thoughts, some positive and some negative. The crystals subjected to positive thoughts appeared attractive and intricate. The crystals subjected to negative thoughts appeared ugly, polluted and unhealthy. This finding led Dr Emoto to conclude that thought can affect matter.

 

I have seen several variations in the manner of conducting the 2 cup method. The consistent factors are:-

 

one should get 2 cups, fill one cup with water and think about your present situation regarding what you want to manifest.

 

One should then pour the water slowly and deliberately into the second cup.

 

Once the water is in the second cup, the person should then concentrate on what he/she wants to manifest regarding the situation.

 

Once a person thinks that they have projected the positive outcome into the water, drink it all in one go.

 

Other variations include writing the current situation on a sticky note and putting it onto cup number one. Write the desired outcome on another sticky note and put it onto cup number 2 and then continue as above.

 

If you are going to do this, I would suggest using glass cups and use spring or purified water. I haven’t found these suggestions mentioned, but it makes sense to me that if you want the best results, you should do your best to ensure that impurities in the water and the receptacles are minimized.

 

Does it work?

I have tried it once recently, and while the immediate result wasn’t exactly what I wanted, I did get a communication the following day,  that will lead to the desired manifestation. Without that communication, the manifestation could not hope to come true. I had been waiting for such a communication for several weeks. I can’t say for sure that the 2 cup method brought this about, but it certainly appears that way to me.

 

The information that I have seen on this method generally states that you shouldn’t expect immediate results, although it is possible that you could get them. Be patient and don’t keep repeating the 2 cup method too frequently, give it a few weeks to manifest first.

 

The theory is that by transferring thoughts of your current situation into one glass of water, and then pouring the water into another glass and stating your desired outcome of the situation, you have completed a shift into another parallel reality where your desire does exist, a quantum leap.

 

Make of this what you will, it won’t hurt to try it and the least you will get is a positive………one of your eight, eight ounce cups of water that you should be drinking every day for health.

Maybe we could try this for weight loss too!

Things That Cats Like

What is a cats favorite singer?…..Cat Stevens

 

What is a cats favorite insect?……Caterpillar

 

What is a cats favorite type of sailing craft?…..Catamaran

 

What is a cats favorite fish?…….Catfish

 

What is a cats favorite area of London UK?…..Catford (look it up, it even has a cat statue)

 

What is a cats favorite capital city?…… Catmandu (Kathmandu, capital of Nepal)

 

What is a cats favorite medical instrument?……Cat scanner

 

What is a cats favorite weapon?…..Catapult

 

What is a cats favorite event?……Catastrophe

 

What is a cats favorite car?…….Catillac

 

What is a cats favorite region of Spain?……Catalonia

 

What is a cats favorite musical show?……Cats

 

What is a cats favorite type of gun?……Catling Gun

 

What is a cats favorite religion?……..Catolic

 

What is a cats favorite vehicle part?……Catalytic Converter

 

What is a cats favorite organisational method?…….Categorization

 

What is a cats favorite type of Roman relic?……Catacombs

 

What is a cats favorite verbal insult?……..Catcalls

 

What is a cats favorite plane?……. Catalina (flying boat)

 

What is a cats favorite super hero?…… Catman

 

What is a cats favorite French meal?……..Catatouille

 

What is a cats all time favorite food?….Meow Mix of course, everyone knows that cats ask for it by name

 

What is a cats favorite band?…..The Stray Cats

 

What is a cats favorite movie?……Cat on a Hot Tin Roof

 

What is a cats favorite livestock?….. Cattle

 

What is a cats favorite animal?…….A Cat of course.

This is very important information. It will keep your cat happy.

A stupid post?  maybe but cat fans love these, and so do cats.

Feel free to add to the list.

Security, How To Stay Safe

vehicle security tips

Everyone needs to take responsibility for the safety and security of themselves and their families. There are many things that you can do to minimize your chances of becoming a victim of crime. These steps are usually small and reasonably effortless. I will cover several areas of concern over a series of posts.

It is all very well to say that you pay for police protection via your taxes but the reality is usually that the police are not around when crime occurs. There are various reasons for this, most are not the fault of the police. It is rare for a police officer to have a crime occur in front of him/her The criminals are looking out for a police free area to commit the crime in the first place and it is easier for the criminal to see the marked police vehicle than it is for the police officer to see the criminal.

A venue with security is better than one without, but professional criminals know that on the whole, the security officer is there to observe and report rather than prevent and apprehend, so the well prepared criminal can commit a crime without too much concern over (immediate) arrest.

 

vehicle security and safety

Today’s post will concentrate on vehicles.

Your vehicle feels like an extension of your residence, but it is not. First and foremost, don’t have provocative car stickers or license plates. Strangers don’t need to know what you support or like. The worst type of sticker to have on your vehicle is the pro gun sticker, the gun range sticker, the gun manufacturer sticker or any other hints that you support firearms. The major reason for this is that criminals love guns and pro gun stickers lead them to suspect that you have a firearm in your vehicle. Criminals will break into your vehicle just on the chance that they may find a gun. Political bias stickers or license plates may invite vandalism or worse. The same principle applies to this, why tell strangers who you are and what you are thinking anyway.

 

prevent criminals breaking into your car

Christmas shopping season is not so far away. When you go to the Mall, try to complete all of your shopping in one go. Don’t go back to your vehicle multiple times, loading it up with merchandise on every trip back to the car. If you don’t follow this advice, at least make sure that the items that you buy are not visible in the unoccupied vehicle. Put the items in the trunk, or at least cover the items up to hide what they are if you put them in the passenger compartment. You can be sure of this one thing, someone is watching. It is all common sense, but you would be very surprised to find out how many people have never thought of such simple preventative steps. Of course, always lock your vehicle when you are away from it, always, no excuses, regardless of how close you may be to the vehicle.

 

stay safe when driving

Lock your vehicle doors at all times when you are driving. Most vehicles now do this automatically and you have probably never thought about it. Check the doors the next time you drive your vehicle, see if they lock automatically and if they don’t, get into the habit of locking them. It would be wise to check the doors anyway because some auto locks are a little quirky. If you are a passenger and stay in a parked vehicle alone, as may happen if the driver makes a pit stop at a store etc, lock the doors while you are in it.

 

park  your car in a safe place

When you park your vehicle in a public place, try to park as close to the building doors as possible. This ensures a constant flow of people past your vehicle, criminals don’t like this and they will go to an easier target in a more quiet area. In the evening or at night, also find the area with the most light. Directly under a light is best. Security cameras are ok, but they don’t deter criminals as much as you may think.

 

check out your parking space for suspicious people

When you approach a place that you will be parking your vehicle, be aware of who is around, if you feel at all suspicious, keep driving. Although this post is about vehicles, it also involves  driver and passenger safety. Sometimes the criminal is interested in people rather than property and sometimes people are just mentally ill and will do the unexpected for no reason at all.

 

How to avoid road rage

Don’t insult other drivers on the road. Don’t give them hand signals that convey your displeasure, no matter how much you think they deserve it. This also goes for verbal messages, yes, the other driver can not hear you, but most derogatory words when accompanied by facial expressions can cause offense, and your message is easily understood. This behaviour can sometimes result in a violent response, even from otherwise law-abiding people.

 

Don't go to suspicious gas stations

When you park up at the gas pump, don’t leave your purse, cell phone, wallet or any other desirable item in plain view on your passenger seat, and make sure that your doors are locked while you are filling up. If you don’t like the vibes of the gas station that you pull into, trust your instinct and go somewhere else. It doesn’t matter what time of day or night it is.

 

Why you should park in your garage

If you have a garage at home, use it. It will add an extra layer of protection to you vehicle. When you park in your garage, close the garage door before you get out of your vehicle.

 

Don;t leave your car running

Don’t ever leave your vehicle running when it is unoccupied, regardless of where you are. There is no reason for this and it is an offense in most places anyway.

 

 

My advice is to drive an inconspicuous vehicle, do a little research into areas that you may have to go to, ones that you don’t know well, and be aware of what is going on around you. Take simple precautions like locking the vehicle, keeping packages out of view and keeping your doors locked, and remember that everything is always alright until, suddenly it isn’t, especially in areas that you know well and feel comfortable in.

 

In the next post, I will look at home security.


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Sulky Sunday

woman in red lipstick opening her mouth

This is a little rhyme that I wrote for my wife because she used to sulk so much on Sundays about having to go to work on Monday.

I am not a poet, I don’t know how to formulate poetry and I am not about to learn any time soon, it is what it is.

She seemed to think that it was funny.

 

 

The big day is here, it’s called sulky Sunday,

It’s not too much fun but it’s better than Monday,

 

The day starts off well, but the clock moves so fast,

She wants time to slow, she wants it to last,

but in the blink of an eye, the day has now passed.

 

To bed she must go, with feelings of sadness,

This Monday feeling is total madness,

 

She closes her eyes and before she is rested,

She is torn from her slumber by the number so detested,

 

It’s 6am, the alarm is ringing, and the ears are stinging,

 

With one thought in her mind, she crawls out of bed,

It’s another DAMN Monday, she screams in her head.

What Is Money? How Can You Attract It?

business close up commerce conceptual

What is money?

And how can you attract money?

Is money is just paper, metal or figures that give a person the ability to obtain goods and services or is there more to it?.  

Money has been described as energy, the transfer of energy, energy storage and many more definitions. People have different ideas on what money actually is, but it is a fact that money is a convenient form of exchange for services and goods. Money is more convenient than a direct exchange of goods or services between people. Having as much money as you need is good, having more money than you can use is freedom.

money pink coins pig

Money is a form of energy storage, nobody can obtain it without some effort, expending some energy. People don’t exchange their energy for pieces of paper or cheap metal disks, they exchange their energy in order to acquire the items that they need or desire. The paper, metal disks and numbers showing a credit on a bank account store the energy until the owner is ready to exchange it for goods and services. There are of course, positive and negative energies that one can choose to use to accumulate money, and if you believe in the big picture principle that what you send out into the universe is what you will receive (reap what you sow), then it would be wise to expend good, honest energy in your quest for money.

bullion gold gold bars golden

Money was once aligned with gold and the value of money was dictated by how much gold was held to validate the currency. For various reasons, this is no longer used and is seen by many people in the financial world as a limiting factor. There would have been no “quantitative easing”  if the value of the dollar was backed by gold.

 

What we have now is the fiat system where a government orders that a currency is legal tender and makes it law that the currency must be accepted as payment for goods and services with no underlying commodity of value to back the currency. When other countries also agree to accept each other’s currency for exchange, you have the current global system. The value of one currency to another varies daily for many reasons, and to give an example, not so long ago you would get two U.S. Dollars (USD) in exchange for every Great Britain Pound (GBP) that you exchange, but at present, you may get around $1.30 for every pound. This is a very simplistic explanation.

 

Whatever you think of money and it’s systems, you need it to survive in the world, if you think that you don’t, then someone is supporting you and you only need to look at the reason that they are able to support you for your answer. You will find that money is being supplied to you by someone.

sky space dark galaxy

Quantum physics suggests some very interesting theories on many topics. The basics are that at their core, all things and living beings are vibrating frequencies which give the illusion of solid objects, and give form to the universe. Along with this goes the theory that we are spiritual beings living in a physical body and world, and that we can influence our environment by what we think. The phrase  “ what you think about is what you become” springs to mind.

 

If the above theory is true, then money is just a frequency and one must harmonize with the frequency of money in order to attract it. The world that we live in demands that we have to give something of value in order to receive money in exchange. It is believed by many, that the act of giving money to people in need of it will ensure that the donor will receive money in return somewhere down the line, and not necessarily from the person who originally received the money.  There is a theory that we live in a kind of elaborate computer game or matrix, created by our spiritual selves in order to give us experiences and teach us lessons. The theory suggests that we can “will” anything that we desire into existence by the power of the mind but we just don’t know it and we have been stripped of the memory of this ability because if we knew of it from birth, then life would be too easy and it would not fulfil it’s function of furnishing experiences and lessons.

 

Money is not good or evil, it just “is”. People can use money for good or evil and some of the acts that various individuals will commit in order to accumulate money may be evil in certain cases. Money does not cause people to act in a bad way, people decide to act in bad ways for themselves. Gold fever is really greed and fear.

 

I see money as a convenient method of exchange for goods and services. There are people who do manipulate the system for personal gain but if you allow yourself to be negatively influenced by hearing, reading and thinking about such people, you will not attract any yourself. Accumulate money for yourself and do good with it.

person holding string lights photo

We all want money, so what is the frequency of money?

Well, it’s not so much about the frequency of money as the frequency that you broadcast from your mind in order to attract it. Your brain produces an electrical field and it would not be so far fetched to believe that you thoughts are a sort of radio broadcast that interact with other frequencies outside of your body.

It is generally accepted by practitioners of the use of thought to manifest desires, that in order to attract your desire, you must go as far as to  truly believe that you already have your desire. To use you mind to “want” something is to attract the “wanting”, so you will be left continually wanting your desire. If you use manifestation techniques to make yourself believe that you already have your desire, then you will attract the desire. The theory is that the “universal field” will pick up on your broadcast, it will see that you believe that you already think that you have your desire and will therefore be obliged to supply the desire.

There is also a belief that people limit themselves financially by the way that they think. A person who earns $50,000 a year and believes that this is the maximum amount that he/she is worth will never earn more than that. Unconsciously, they will limit their job searches to $50,000 as a ceiling or maybe they won’t attempt to start a business because they “know” that they won’t make any money.

 

Many people who study manifestation techniques suggest that a mindset of general abundance already attained and gratitude for that abundance are the correct approach to get to be on the frequency that attracts money.

 

Do something positive to achieve abundance. Some people believe that nothing is required in order to attract abundance except to get into the mindset, but the mindset produces ideas and ideas put into action (brought into physical being) are what produces results.

 

Conclusion

Don’t let yourself believe that money is bad and that it is not attainable by you. Have faith in yourself, develop your skills and go and get some. The existing system is not perfect but it is what we have to work with. We need to find ways to achieve wealth honestly, from within the system.

A person must have faith in their ability to earn an abundance of money in order to make money.

 

The ideas discussed here are all elements of large areas of study in their own right and there is an abundance of information about all of the ideas online and in books. Each idea would be worth further investigation. I can’t say whether manifestation produces results, but most of the alternatives are not positive, and practicing some of these ideas would not do any harm and may produce something positive.

What Can Help You To Lose Weight?

close up measure measurement number

 

What can help you to lose weight?

As I have mentioned before, the major principle for weight loss is to expend more energy than you receive. In this post I will look at some consumable substances that may aid healthy weight loss. None are proven to be effective for every individual because each person’s body responds to different inputs in a unique way.

 

 

woman girl silhouette jogger

Traditional Exercise

Not a consumable, but very important, exercise has always been a major component of weight loss programs, in combination with diet. The practice adheres to the major principle, as it burns off large amounts of energy. A person who is significantly overweight may have to start with an exercise regime that is not too severe at first. Walking, swimming and light weight training is ideal, and build up to more strenuous exercise if desired.

For a person who only wants to lose a few pounds and is reasonably fit, jogging (progressing to running) aerobic classes and weight training should produce good results.

It is not necessary for a person to drive himself/herself into the ground with exercise, the main function of exercise when considering weight loss, is to help get the right balance of energy input/output by following the major principle of expending more energy that one receives.

The chosen exercise program should be used in conjunction with a sensible diet plan that contains healthful supplies of all of the main components, carbohydrates, fats and proteins. I advocate a diet that is not so severe that it completely cuts out one of the three elements although such diet plans have worked for some people, and as always you will have to experiment and see what your particular body likes. One of my concerns for such diets is the fact that they may not be sustainable in the long-term which is why I prefer the more traditional approach. There is a great Diet plan called “Beyond Diet”, it is not really a diet plan as we think of them, it is more of a total long term eating lifestyle change. I am not an affiliate of Beyond Diet, I just think that it is very sensible and one of my family members uses it to good effect.

Your food should be as healthy and natural as you can possibly get it, and be sure to double-check the claims of “Organic” and “Non-GMO” on all of your food.

Diet and exercise should be the foundation of any weight loss program. The following is a list of extra assistance that may or may not be of use to you, depending on your psychological tendencies and things that your individual body responds to.

 

 

clear glass mason bottles with apple juice

Apple Cider Vinegar

The major active ingredient of ACV is acetic acid. Drinking ACV diluted in water, is said by some to reduce hunger pangs and reduce fat storage. Studies on rats that were given acetic acid seems to have shown a reduction of belly fat. ACV is said to have many benefits, I personally use it as a treatment for spots and it works great. The reader will need to experiment with ACV to see if it works for them, but remember to get the natural unfiltered Apple Cider Vinegar containing “the mother” . The mother is a cloudy weblike substance within the vinegar which is believed to hold the key to the substance’s properties.

For more details click here

 

beverage breakfast caffeine close up

Green Tea

Green tea is said to have several health benefits, and it is believed to be very effective for losing weight. Green Tea has a high level of catechins, natural antioxidants that can improve metabolism and increase the burning of fat.

It also contains the substances caffeine and EGCG, which can have a positive effects on

metabolism. Other components in green tea increase the levels of hormones that are responsible for fat burning in our system and they release more fat into the bloodstream.

 

 

assorted spices near white ceramic bowls

Herbs That are Believed to Assist With Weight Loss

 

Fenugreek, believed to reduce appetite and food consumption.

 

Cumin, believed to accelerate the burning of fat and thus assist weight loss.

 

Cayenne Pepper, a form of chili pepper containing capsaicin, which is believed to increase metabolism, it may also reduce hunger and calorie intake.

 

Cinnamon, made from tree bark, this popular spice is high in antioxidants and could reduce blood sugar levels, resulting in appetite and hunger suppression.

 

Ginger, may help lower weight by increasing metabolism and fat burning and may also decrease fat absorption and appetite.

 

Ginseng, frequently used in traditional Chinese medicine for many complaints. It may encourage weight loss, slow fat absorption and modify fat formation.

 

Oregano, This herb contains a substance called Carvacrol. Animal studies have suggested that mice taking Carvacrol showed less weight gain and less fat gain than mice who were not fed the substance.

 

Black Pepper, is a common kitchen ingredient. It contains a compound called piperine which is believed to have a positive effect on weight loss.

 

 

yellow health medicine wellness

Weight Loss Pills

There are many pills on the market that claim to promote, assist or cause weight loss. The wise potential buyer would research each brand to discover the ingredients and read reviews. Some pills contain herb extracts and some contain a lot of caffeine. There are prescription pills for weight loss and they may be effective but the ingredients and side effects should be reviewed before taking them.  

 

 

basket board calcium cheese

Foods For Weight Loss

Real butter from grass-fed cows, full fat dairy products and beef (preferably grass-fed) all contain high amounts of a compound called conjugated linoleic acid, CLA, which is a polyunsaturated fat. The human body does not make this substance. CLA is believed to be beneficial in weight loss because it may decrease body fat mass and increase lean body mass. These food also find approval with myself, as I believe that some full fat foods have gained an undeserved bad reputation over the last 30 years or so. People who lived 100 years ago were eating all of these full fat products and there was not an obesity problem like there is today. The CLA found in food is thought to be superior to supplements containing it. AS always, try to eat organic and natural products.

Coconut Oil

Coconut oil contains medium-chain fatty acids and it can  help the body burn fat for fuel and use up more energy. Coconut oil have also been found to be very satisfying for hunger and may support thyroid health, which is important for keeping your metabolism working correctly. I use coconut oil exclusively when I need to cook food in oil. The oil comes in a solid form but melts under heat and can be used for frying. I cook my burgers and eggs in coconut oil and they taste wonderful.

Foods High In Protein

These foods make the body work harder to break them down than low protein foods and that requires more energy. As you are eating you are also burning energy. High protein foods also help to make you feel full so you may eat less.

 

 

sliced lemon fruit in glass picher

Water For Weight Loss

Water is essential for everyone, so you are going to have to drink it regardless. Most studies suggest that a normal healthy water intake is 8 ounces, 8 times a day. If you are exercising, then you may need more.

Water is said by some, to be a nutrient in it’s own right and it performs various functions, such as eliminating waste via urination, perspiration and bowel movements. Water keeps your temperature normal, lubricates and cushions joints and protects sensitive tissues. Water is also believed to boost metabolism. If you are in a weight loss program, all of the above functions of water are extremely useful to you.

I believe that the type of water that is consumed is also important. Distilled water has its uses but I would not recommend it for a weight loss program. Despite the fact that in general, plastic bottles are used to supply us with the natural spring water found in stores, I believe that this is the best option for drinking water. Filtering your own water is probably the ideal, but the equipment is very expensive if you want to do it right.

 

 

ask blackboard chalk board chalkboard

So, what can you do with all of this information?  Here’s a suggestion:

 

  • Sit down and either buy a diet plan or formulate your own, incorporating several of the foods that are discussed above. In my opinion, the food and drink must be as natural as you can get in order for the plan to work to best effect. Because of the modern way of life, if you are formulating the plan yourself,  it is advisable to plan out every meal for the whole week, every week.

 

  • Research exercise routines, pick one that you like the sound of and start it. I would recommend some aerobics and also a weight training routine because muscle burns more energy than fat and the aim is to burn energy. You don’t necessarily need to invent your own plan, you can look for existing plans that incorporate aerobics and weights and buy the plan.

 

 

If after a few weeks, the plan isn’t working for you, add something to it or replace an element of the plan.

 

It takes a lot of effort and knowledge for a person to effectively devise their own weight loss plan. The easy way is to buy a diet plan, buy an exercise plan and incorporate the herbs and foods (all or some) discussed above, into the plans.

 

The bottom line is that whatever you do, you have to follow the plan. You will also have to tweak the plan to fit your body, expenses and schedule.

 

I also think that a mindful approach to weight loss will help enormously. Meditation, affirmations and yoga are all great.

Yoga

backlit beach dawn dusk

Yoga is believed to have  originated in India several thousand years ago, before any religious systems.  The word Yoga is said to be Sanskrit. Sanskrit is a language of ancient India with a documented history of nearly 3,500 years. It is the primary liturgical language of Hinduism, and the main philosophical language of Hinduism. Some Buddhist and Jainism texts are also in this language.

The word Yoga means to join, yoke, unite, referring to the unity of mind and body and also that of man and the universe.

Most people associate Yoga strictly with Hatha Yoga and the Asanas, but these are only components of Yoga. The Yoga Sutras of Patanjali is a collection of 196 sutras or general truths/principles. Yoga is a very large subject and many people have written books on this subject alone.

women s white top and orange floral skirt

 

The Popular Hatha Yoga Types

Hatha Yoga is the term for physical Yoga practices, most popular in the West.

 

Iyengar Yoga

A slow style of Yoga that grows strength, flexibility and awareness.

 

Restorative Yoga

Practising stillness or slow movements and mindfulness for therapeutic purposes and to center the mind and body. Props are used to assist the body in each pose.

 

Hot Yoga

Carried out in a heated room, normally in a class situation. The heat encourages detoxification by sweating out the toxins. Hot Yoga is said to increase the heart rate and ease arthritis and joint pain.

 

Vinyasa Yoga

Flowing movements of the body, synchronized with breathing,  producing a type of moving meditation sequence. There are no set sequences.

 

Ashtanga Vinyasa Yoga

Ashtanga Vinyasa Yoga is a style of yoga created  by K. Pattabhi Jois in modern times. It is considered as an up to date form of classical yoga. Ashtanga means eight limbs or branches, of which asana/physical yoga posture is only one branch, breath/pranayama is another. All eight limbs are practiced in six set sequences and have various stages.

 

Kundalini Yoga

Is both spiritual and physical and is supposed to release the kundalini energy in your body that is trapped in the lower spine. This style works your body and breathing with fast paced postures and breathing exercises. The practice can also incorporate chants, mantra, and meditation.

 

Yin Yoga

A slower style of yoga with seated postures that are held for longer periods of time. Each posture can be held for up  to two minutes. As this type is slower, meditation can also take place while practicing the postures.

 

Bikram  Yoga

Bikram Choudhury developed this type of yoga. Classes are held in a heated room. You will work  through a series of 26 poses. Bikram always follows the same sequence, although a Bikram sequence is different from an ashtanga sequence. Bikram is very popular and is an easy class to find.

adult balance barefoot concentration

 

The 8 Limbs Of Yoga

At the heart of Patanjali Yoga Sutra is the eight-limbs that create the framework for the practice of yoga. No one element holds more importance than another . Each limb makes up a system which is said to bring a completeness to the practitioner as they find their connectivity themselves, nature and the universe.

 

Yama:   Universal morality

Niyama :  Personal observances

Asanas :  Body postures

Pranayama :  Breathing exercises

Pratyahara :  Control of the senses

Dharana :  Concentration and cultivating inner perceptual awareness

Dhyana :  Devotion and Meditation

Samadhi :  Union with the Divine

man wearing white pants under blue sky

 

The Benefits Of Yoga

  • Helps with mood and depression issues.
  • Increases spinal flexibility.
  • Improve chances of conception for females.
  • Improves cardiovascular function.
  • Eases the symptoms of asthma
  • Helps ease the symptoms of arthritis
  • Eases insomnia.
  • Can increase flexibility, strength and posture.
  • Promotes weight loss.
  • Increased energy.

 

Yoga can be practiced by people of any age and can be completed in a class setting with a teacher,  leader or guide or you can study the topic and become your own guide and maybe even adapt the principles to create your own system.

There is no doubt that people who have practiced Yoga, feel that they have derived great benefit from the practice.

Most of the hatha Yoga programs seem to be aimed at women, especially the class based Yoga sessions, but they can be practiced just as effectively by men.

 

Resources

Yoga Burn

Shapeshifter Yoga

Progressive Yoga, From The “World’s Smartest Workout ” Coach

6 Week Beginners Guide To Yoga

Alignment For Healing: Yofa Jhe Sessions

Meditation Expert

Organizing Your Finances

person holding coins

Everyone needs to have some type of system for their finances. Everyone (almost everyone) has monthly bills to pay, and missing a payment is a bad thing as it can affect your credit rating. The credit rating is very important as it affects the interest rates that you are eligible for when applying for a loan, mortgage or a credit card.

 

Bill Payment Systems.

One system that can be used is to set up automatic payments from your bank to your creditors. You don’t have to keep up with due dates and everything is automated. The problem is that if you have an unexpected payment that you have to make then you may end up with an overdrawn account or the bank may not honor the payment due to insufficient funds. This could also be an issue for a business person, contractor or freelancer who does not get a regular set amount deposited into their bank every month. The system is not good for a person who does not have regular scheduled payments into their bank account.

Another system, preferred by myself, is to receive paper bills/invoices. I organize the paper bills by stacking them on top of each other after sorting them by date, with the closest date to the present on top. Keep the stack in a place that catches the eye regularly and get into the habit of checking the top bill frequently, not a very high tech system, but it is a system, and it works. This system allows a person to either wait for the “due date” to pay the bill or pay it early if sufficient funds are in the bank at the time that the person checks the stack. It may not work for everyone and I suppose that the system relies on habit and a good memory, but it is useful when you have income that is not received on a regular date, the system also aids the cash flow. Cash Flow is not the same as a general lack of cash.

I have noticed that some banks and credit card companies are attempting to charge for paper bills. When that becomes common, I will probably go to a paper stack of printed email reminders.

 

Another option is to have no system and hope for the best. This doesn’t work and usually results in missed payments, late fees and a less than impressive credit score. Many people think that they will not have to borrow money and that the credit score is of no interest to them, but it is always wise to be prepared for the unexpected and ensure that your credit score will allow you to get a good interest rate, just in case you need it.

People qualify for interest rates on loans based on their credit score. It is very unfair, but the bottom line on this is that the people who need credit the most and who have the least amount of wealth, end up being offered loans with the highest interest rates as their only option.  I have seen credit cards offered with a great 6% APR (only with an excellent credit score), but I have also seen credit cards with a crazy 25% APR, these are generally the store charge card types of deals. I would not take that deal, I would rather walk around in worn out clothing (or whatever else they are offering at the store).

 

Should You Use Savings or Credit on an Unexpected Expense.

It would be nice for a person to have enough cash reserves to be confident that they could cover any eventuality, but for most people, this is not reality. The use of cash or credit depends upon the credit deal that is being offered and the cost of the unexpected expense. I have used credit when there has been a 0% deal on offer for the amount that I require, but before I accept the offer, I always check the APR on the loan, in case I don’t finish the payments in time. I always calculate the minimum monthly payments that are required to pay the loan off before the 0% APR expires.  I have sometimes ignored the 0% deals in favor of a low interest rate when the expense is so large that I know that I will not pay it in time. Most of the time I will take a 0% loan offer on an expense even if I have the reserves to pay cash, as long as I can be sure of paying the loan off before the interest takes effect.. Taking a loan helps with cash flow, and I suppose that some of it is psychological, because I still have all my reserves in place for emergencies.

Sometimes the offer is very good, such as an 18 month 0% APR for purchases. The thing is, you must be aware of the “ 0% for 18 months, then 22% (example) APR” statement in the offer.  The interest usually encompasses the whole loan amount after the special rate expires, not just the outstanding balance, which means that you will have to pay all of the interest if you don’t pay off the loan in time. If you are considering a credit card offer, make sure that you start with a zero balance, because your monthly payments are usually applied to your original balance first, until it is paid in full. The original balance will still be subject to your normal APR, so you could end up making purchases under the 0% offer but never actually enjoy that offer because your monthly payments will go to something else. As long as you can be sure of paying off the loan in time, the 0% APR deals are worth taking advantage of and they will also help to build an excellent credit score.

Using loans in this way takes a lot of discipline and a constant awareness of what you are doing. If you lose track of things, you will be worse off in the end. Sometimes people have no reserves and have absolutely no option but to take a loan for an emergency, to buy a car (to get to work), new HVAC system to stay warm or cool , medical bills, help a family member etc.

APR is Annual Percentage Rate of Charge.

Credit is a bankers game, either avoid it or learn to use it to give you as much benefit as you can squeeze out of it. Have you ever wondered why you are offered 1% interest on your savings account, with banks advertising this as a great rate,  but their best offer to you is a loan with 15% interest on the total value of the loan? I sure have, but most of us have to play this game at some time.

 

Achieving a Good Credit Score

Achieving a good credit score is not that hard, and a payment system helps greatly.  Try to keep your outstanding balances on credit cards low. You must pay the monthly bills on time, even if you can only afford the minimum payment, make sure that you pay it somehow. The same goes for all bills. Beware of small medical bills and store charge cards that can easily be overlooked, they will report a person to the credit agencies in the blink of an eye for one missed payment, even if you have been making regular payments for months. Once reported, a late payment could result in a loss of 60 points or more on your credit score. I don’t advocate this credit score system, but play the game, to give you more options and a good interest rate just in case you do need a loan at some stage.

 

Live Within Your Means

The best option for having enough money and avoiding credit is to live within your means. I have read that many wealthy people do this, maybe this approach helped them to become wealthy. Don’t spend money that you don’t have on a flashy new car, be happy with a reliable one (for now). Don’t feel the need to keep up with other people. I have never understood people who feel forced to buy things just to keep up with neighbors, friends etc. If someone thinks less of you because you don’t spend a crazy $200 on a pair of already ripped jeans, so what. The tennis shoe fad is really puzzling. I refuse to pay more than $60 for a pair of tennis shoes, and when I do buy a pair, they need to be well designed running shoes. I also know that a $60 pair of running shoes is overpriced but I have found that this is about the cheapest quality shoe available for running at this time in the U.S.A.

Don’t be influenced by advertisements. This is hard because ads are specifically designed by some very clever people to have a psychological effect, that effect being to get you to buy what you don’t need or sometimes don’t even want.

 

Save Money

This is a good habit to acquire. The act of saving will help you to feel better and it is the starting point for building a cash reserve. Set a figure or percentage for yourself to save every week, pay period or month and don’t break into it except for extreme emergencies. Buying stocks or shares with savings is ok, but one needs to be aware that they can lose value as well as gain value and it is really a long term strategy, unless you have a significant amount of money to invest.

 

Insurance and Pensions

I would suggest that it is wise to get life insurance of some type while you are still young. The younger a person is, the cheaper the rate and the more coverage you can get. Ideally, life insurance should cover 2 people such as a husband and wife  in a mutual agreement. The actual product does not have to be the same one, but the benefit amount should be equal for both parties (to be fair). If the worst happens, the person left here will not have so many financial problems. There are plenty of different products available with various rates and terms.

Pensions are not usually a high priority for young people but this is the best time to begin planning. You don’t know what you will be doing in the future and the work that you do may not offer anything other than a 401k. The longer you invest in your own scheme, the more you will have when it comes time to claim the pension. If you are young and you are reading this, take a few hours over the next few days to investigate this. Normally, the employer contributes a certain amount of cash into a 401k, which makes it more valuable and a 401k is portable from one job to another, but you will have to work for an employer for a certain amount of time to be able to keep the employer’s contribution. This is called vesting and each employer has their own time period for the employee to be fully vested. Once you are fully vested, you can get another job and take 100% of the employer’s contributions with you in the form of the 401k. From the employer’s point of view, the vesting period encourages employee longevity, from the employees point of view, if they want to keep that employer contribution to their 401k, they will have to stay with the company for a set period of time. You could have to spend between 3 to 8 years or more with a company before you are fully vested.

Planning for  pensions too late could result in a person relying on social security alone in retirement. Pensions are seen as an old person’s issue, but early consideration of this topic is advisable.

Weight Loss For Women And Men

blue and black measuring tape wrapped around a silver metal fork

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Here is the one major  principle for weight loss, “ expend more energy than you gain from your food and drink”. I have a suspicion that modern food additives don’t particularly help a person keep to a healthy weight.

What is a healthy weight?, a weight that you feel good about, doesn’t cause any health problems and also makes you feel positive about the way that you look. The way a person looks is important and it is not just vanity, because looking good helps confidence, and therefore encourages psychological health. The normal quoted height/ weight ratios found in medical journals and websites do not tell the whole story, especially for males who work out. A 6ft male who weighs 190lbs with a 33 inch waist is considered overweight according to the Mayo Clinic BMI calculator. If the male works out however, this weight is on the low side and doesn’t take the exercise into account. I would not consider such a person as overweight, I would expect that this person looks good and has an attractive muscle tone. Generally, the average suggested weight range for a 6ft male is 155lbs -170lbs, which appears to be on the light side to me.

For the ladies, the average female height in the U.S.A. is said to be 5ft 4 inches with an ideal weight of 120lbs. The height quoted, seems to be somewhat less than I would expect, but it is an average of several different races of people. Ladies tend to concentrate on their looks over health when considering weight. This does not matter, as a healthy weight will result in both good looks and health.  A woman can carry more weight than the height/weight and BMI charts quote and still be very attractive, so don’t stress out over ideal weight charts and media publications on perfect weight and body type and such things.

Weight Loss, Men Vs Women.

Men lose weight more easily than women for several reasons,

  • Muscle – men have more muscle than women and because of that, they burn more calories.
  • Estrogen –  reduces a woman’s ability to  burn the energy off, after eating.
  • Stored fat –  men and women store fat in different areas of the body and it is easier for men to lose their belly fat that it is for women to lose the fat stored around their hips and thighs.
  • Water loss –  men lose water more easily, glycogen and water are stored in the body together. Glycogen is stored carbohydrates and when the energy in glycogen is used, it also releases the stored water.Men use more carbohydrates during exercise than women. Water is heavy and because men burn more carbs than women, they lose more water because of this.
  • Comfort eating – this more favored by women and comfort foods tend to be high carb, processed foods.

These are physiological facts and nothing can be done about it, however, studies show that after a few months of a dedicated weight loss program the different results between men and women begin to even out, so at the end of the day it is possible for both men and women to lose as much weight as they wish, just don’t get into a weekly weight scale competition with a man in the early stages of a diet plan.

 

Natural Body Type

The three body types commonly used are the Ectomorph, Mesomorph and Endomorph.

As with everything, most people can be a some of one type and a little of another, but identifying your body type in general terms can sometimes assist you in your choice of weight loss program, including physical exercise, and will help you to know what to look out for during the course of your program.

  • Ectomorph – Slim/thin in looks, with long slender limbs and no signs of accumulated fat or much muscle, they can eat what they like in as much quantity as they wish and still won’t gain weight. The type of body that female supermodels posess. It looks good on a woman but not so flattering for a man.

 

  • Mesomorph – Muscular and solid looking without gaining fat too easily. The bones are of a medium density and they are the middle ground between the ectomorph and the endomorph. The mesomorph can gain muscle easily. A great body type for a man.

 

  • Endomorph – These body types have wide waists and big bones, they tend to gain weight easily and don’t gain muscle very quickly. Not so good for either men or women, but these minor disadvantages can be overcome.

 

The basic body types are very generalized and only give a person a simplified guide as to their natural tendency. Most people have a mixed body type that only favors one of the major types to a greater extent but also has qualities of other body types to a lesser extent such as a man with mainly ectomorph qualities who also adds muscle to his body reasonably easily.  Nothing is absolute, and it is perfectly possible for an ectomorph to gain muscle and an endomorph to lose weight. Good eating habits and the correct physical exercises can achieve whatever result that you wish, to a large degree.

 

Age and Weight Gain.

Many people gain more weight as they age and there are many possible reasons. It could be that they are less active. This is an easy fix, just be as active as you can.  I have noticed lately, that I see more older people who look slim and fit and more younger people who look like they have been on a diet of chips, soda and candy for their whole lives. We could also speculate that younger people generally don’t get a full serving of exercise anymore during the course of a normal day and the fit looking younger people are the people who have to expend energy at the gym in their own time after work to stay fit.

Some scientists suggest that age effects our eating habits and that older people can become less perceptive about their body’s nutritional needs , specifically effecting the mechanism that stops us from continuing to eat when we are full.

As we age, our metabolism slows and this leads to fewer calories being burned. Burning calories can be achieved by exercise, so older people who don’t want to gain weight can take as much regular exercise as their health allows.

Loss of Muscle. Muscle burns more calories than fat and as we age, we lose lean muscle if we don’t exercise.. Weight training can counteract this aging effect and also boost strength and flexibility.

 

Food Quality

Food quality is as important as the type of food eaten, this should be remembered when selecting your diet plan ingredients. The best approach if you haven’t got a diet plan yet, is to minimize highly processed foods, drinks and anything that states that it is a diet or low-fat product unless it is naturally low in fat, make your meal size smaller than your usual size and cut out the snacks. The grocery stores are normally laid out with the fresh foods around the perimeter and the processed foods in the aisles, so minimize eating foods found in the aisles, which are normally canned or dehydrated.

Organic foods should be chosen over anything that does not state that it is organic. Non-GMO labelled products are preferred. If you wish to grow some vegetables, make sure that you buy Non-GMO seeds.

Studies on groups of animals have suggested that GMO foods caused them to gain weight when compared to groups that were fed Non-GMO foods over a period of months. Studies have also shown that GMO crops are between 10% to 25% lower in nutrients than they were 50 years ago, so a weight loss diet with a high level of GMO ingredients is counter-productive. Even if you don’t trust the studies, do you want to risk sabotaging your diet by ignoring the possibility that the studies were correct?.

 

Surgery For Weight Loss

I would not advise this approach unless it is the only option in a life threatening situation. I don’t believe in any surgery that is not for emergency purposes. The surgery itself is not necessarily dangerous, but It is tempting fate to allow someone to perform invasive surgery for a problem that could probably be solved by dietary change, exercise and determination. Surgery is also very expensive as it is usually considered cosmetic.

 

Exercise

There are people who can lose significant weight without exercise but I believe that exercise should be an integral part of any weight loss program. Weight training is ideal because it builds muscle and muscle burns more calories than fat. This results in a win-win situation, you get to look more toned and lose weight more effectively. A whole body approach is advisable for weight loss, meaning that you should exercise every part of your body in each session, chest, shoulders, arms, back, legs and abdominals. A body builders approach can be used, where you break the training sessions into two or more body parts per session, such as chest/back one day, legs/shoulders another and arms on another day but this requires more dedication. A full body approach to weight training ensures that you keep your muscles in balance and you can’t skip the less appealing exercises such as legs for the men and upper body for the ladies. Don’t worry ladies, you won’t end up looking like Arnold, (it takes a huge amount of effort, among other things, to produce those results) but you will look very toned. With weight training, the body continues to burn calories long after completing the session.

Cardiovascular exercise is also good for burning calories and it keeps you fit. The exact exercises will have to be a personal choice, but running is good, circuit training in a gym class is good, including the popular boxercise and martial arts inspired classes.

The bottom line on this is that it is wise to include an exercise plan along with your diet plan for best results. Pick an exercise regime that you enjoy because this will help you to stick to it.

 

Mental Approach

Determination is needed to be successful in weight loss, this is why I suggested earlier that it would be beneficial to experiment with finding the diet that suits you, psychologically and physiologically.

A desire to succeed and a positive approach are needed. Aids to this can be visualization techniques, affirmations and meditation. I believe that many high performing athletes use some or all of these techniques to perform at their best, as do many high performing people in all walks of life. It might sound New Age, Hippy, Weird etc, but it can’t hurt, and if you discover that it works, you have found a new assistant, one that was in your own mind all along.

 

Types Of Diet

There are many diets available, the trick is to discover which diet your body responds to best. I would also suggest that a weight loss diet does not have to be boring, painful or debilitating. The expert official advice is not always the best advice to take and I believe in researching and experimenting for yourself, because where diet and exercise are concerned, you are the expert regarding your own body. The saying that “one man’s meat is another man’s poison” is very apt here, and it should be considered when choosing your diet plan. Find out what works for YOU, keep notes and use the information to improve the quality of your life and achieve your goals.

If you have known medical issues, I would advise checking with your doctor before starting any diet or exercise program.

Most diets plans will work if the programs are followed accurately (no cheating). I have listed some interesting ones below but there is no guarantee of success on any of the plans listed, it’s up to you to test them out and see if one of them works for you!!

 

the-perfect-fat-burn-diet-3d-book-cover

The PFB Diet uses modern science to help you reach your absolute highest possible fat burn rates WITHOUT destroying any of your lean body mass. It relies on a specific combination of foods that have been proven to REDUCE your hunger and cravings even as you enjoy insanely high fat burn rates.

 

The 4 Week Diet

 

 

revenge diet

A secret that reversed my Type 2 diabetes…

A secret that had me shed 40 lbs in 3 months without drugs or dangerous surgery.

A secret that left my “know-it-all” doctor absolutely shocked and questioning everything he learned in medical school…

A secret that gave me the ENERGY I had as a teenager and the sex drive I thought I’d lost for good…

A secret that didn’t just “save” my marriage, but had my husband come crawling back to me, treating me like a queen… practically worshipping the ground I walked on…

 

 

smoothie diet

 

CLICK HERE to learn more

 

 

diet for men olgo

DOES IT WORK?

Customized Fat Loss for Men is a weight loss program exclusively for men because it consists of unique nutrition and training strategies designed to work with the male metabolism in order to support healthy weight loss and optimize the release and effectiveness of naturally occurring male hormones.

Now, it’s important to understand this weight loss program is not some kind of supplement and has nothing to do with silly exercise gizmos, pills, powders, potions or anything of that nature whatsoever. And this program definitely isn’t some kind of crazy crash diet or celebrity fad of the week. Rather, with Customized Fat Loss for men you’re provided a complete nutrition and training program along with a custom nutritional software designed to help your body optimize fat loss by systematically allocating calories and macronutrients at specific times based around you as an individual….

The amount of calories you consume, when you consume them, and the macronutrients they’re comprised of are all determined by various personal factors like your age, weight, height and most importantly your body type. Your customized training program is also individually determined by all of the above personal characteristics along with your exercise history and capabilities.

Customized Fat Loss For Men uses a unique 3 phase approach designed to provide a healthy, natural and fully customized solution to help men achieve their weight loss goals.

 

 

 

Full Throttle Weight Loss

full throttle weight loss

This is the end of your fat loss journey, and the beginning of your new lean self.
You’re going to watch your body change, you’re going to feel your joint pain
disappear, and you’re going to experience more confidence than you
EVER have before!!

 

British Meal Recipes

british-food-pic.jpg

Europeans joke about British food constantly, calling it unimaginative, plain and uninspired among other things. I was born, raised and I have still spent a lot of my life in the U.K. I have been living in the U.S.A. for 20 years now, but I still like to prepare British meals regularly.

The recipies are not meant to be healthy options, they are (or were, when I lived there) common meals and snacks in the U.K. I often get asked  about what the British eat and I am frequently asked for recipes, so I thought that I would post about the topic. Here are a few of my favorites:-

 

Beans On Toast

baked beans and toast

A favorite snack, I have not known any American born person to try this snack, they seem to find the ingredients unappetizing, in the same way that I find the idea of peanut butter and jelly sandwiches unappealing. I still have not tried PBJ.

For beans on toast for one person, you wil need:

  • 1 8oz can of beans in tomato sauce (NOT BBQ beans).
  • 2 slices of bread.
  • Real butter for the bread.
  • Pepper if desired,
  • Heat the beans in a pan and toast the bread.
  • When the bread is fully toasted, liberally butter the toast.
  • Pour the hot beans over both slices of toast and add pepper if desired.

Eat with a knife and fork, taking beans and toast into the mouth at the same time.

The choice of beans are crucial to the recipie. Heinz beans in tomato sauce is generally used in the U.K. They can be found in the U.S.A., but they are very expensive. The best alternative is Showboat Pork and beans in tomato sauce made by Bush Brothers & Company, these beans are widely available, very nicely priced and they are about 99.9% comparable to Heinz in taste.

Beans on toast can be a snack or a quick meal. I think that Americans dislike the idea of this recipe because when they think of beans, they think of the BBQ beans variety, which I doubt would go very well with buttered toast.

Real butter is a requirement for the recipie, margarine will not produce the correct flavor. The butter must be spread onto the hot toast liberally.

 

Shepherd’s Pie

food healthy dinner lunch

A family favorite.

Technically, what I am about to describe is called Cottage Pie as it is made with beef and not lamb but it is served in Irish themed bars in the U.S.A. as Shepherd’s Pie and I have always known this recipe as Sheherd’s Pie.

For 3-4 people, you will need:

  • 1 LB of lean ground beef, 90% lean if possible,
  • About 8 large potatoes,
  • 2 medium size onions,
  • A handful of sliced carrots, fresh or frozen,
  • Half a pound of frozen peas,
  • 2 beef Oxo cubes (more on this later),
  • A small handful of sea salt.
  • 2 knobs of real butter
  • Full fat milk.

First I will explain the Oxo cubes. These are beef stock cubes that crumble very easily, the beef flavor is absorbed into the meat very well. I have not found a suitable substitute for Oxo cubes in the U.S.A. If you don’t use Oxo, the Shepherd’s pie won’t taste right. Oxo can be bought online form British food suppliers at a reasonable cost. I would suggest buying two boxes of 24 cubes minimum on each online purchase to save on shipping.

Place the ground beef into a pot, add water, and crumble 2 Oxo cubes and add the salt.

Chop the onions and add them to the pot.

Add the peas and carrots

Place on the cooker to boil

There is no maximum time limit for boiling the ground beef, let it boil, then simmer while the potatoes are cooking.

Peel, boil and mash the potatoes, add a small amount of salt to the water when boiling. Add butter and milk when mashing, to make a smooth creamy mash.

Drain the ground beef and place into a baking dish. Spread the meat evenly within the dish.

Spread the mashed potato evenly on top of the ground beef.. Create swirl patterns on top of the ptoato with a fork.

Place into the oven on 425 for about 30 minutes, or until the peaks created by the swirling turn brown and crisp.

Serve and enjoy.

 

Ham Steak, Potatoes, Peas and Parsley Sauce.

grilled ham

This is a quick and easy meal, the ham steak, one per person, can be lightly sauteed in the frying pan using a small amount of coconut oil.

Potatoes can be boiled or mashed.

Fresh, frozen or canned peas can be used, I prefer the frozen peas and I think that they are about as good as fresh. Another vegetable can be substituted if desired.

Parsley sauce is a savory white sauce flavored with parsley. It seems to be unknown in the U.S.A. but my family cannot get enough of it. I prefer to use Knorr parsley sauce mix which can be bought in the same online British stores as the Oxo cubes. Preparing the sauce is easy, just add the dry sauce mix to a small amount of milk, stir it into a paste, add the rest of the milk as directed on the packet and heat until it thickens. Parsley sauce mix must be prepared when the rest of the cooking is mostly done and must be stirred continually on a low to medium heat in a saucepan.

Parsley sauce is also great with fish (not fried) meals.

 

Bangers (Sausage), mashed potatoes, mixed vegetables with tomato gravy.

sausage and egg on plate

This is another family favorite and easy to make.

Use real bangers or sausages, not spicy hot, Italian, Polish Keilbasa or hot dogs. Ideally one would use British bangers or Irish sausages but I have been using the generic pork breakfast sausage links to good effect because they are readily available in the stores.

The sausages should be placed on a thin metal baking plate and placed on the top shelf of the oven on 450, until they are brown.

Mashed potatoes should be prepared in the same way as they are for the Shepards Pie.

I use frozen mixed vegetables and usually pay a little more for them by choosing a branded frozen product because they seem to be of a better quality.

The gravy is the special ingredient, it is made with Bisto powder, Oxo cubes and a small can of diced tomatoes. Bisto powder is another Brithish product, well known and loved in the U.K. For half a pint of gravy, use 4 level teaspoons of powder. I would normally prepare one pint of gravy using 8  level teaspoons of Bisto, add the powder to cold water, curmble 2 Oxo cubes into the mixture, drain the diced tomato and add it to the mix. Place the mixture into a large saucepan and prepare on a medium low to medium heat setting, stirring constantly until the mix has thickened into a gravy. If your gravy seems too thick, just add some more water, a little at a time until you get the desired consistancy. Poor the gravy liberally over all of the other ingredients of the meal and enjoy.

Like Oxo and Parsley sauce mix, Bisto powder can be bought in the same U.S. based online British stores.

 

These are just a few British meals and I will make other posts with more recipes at a later date.

A note on Britain’s most revered dish, Fish and Chips. I have never been able to match the quality of fish and chips prepared by a genuine fish and chip shop and I have not found anything to compare to it in the U.S.A. so far. This is something that you will have to go to the U.K. to get.

Fish and chips  are a take out food (“take away” in British English) although some shops do have “eat in” areas also. The fish is generally Cod, but other fish can be found, chips (fries) are a similar size to steak fries but are prepared diferently. Fish and chips was once traditionally served wrapped in genuine old newspaper and I remember eating them this way, but years ago, it was deemed unsanitary and now the dish is served in plain white paper, or sometimes a printed white paper made to look somewhat like newspaper to honor the tradition. Generally, one would add a lot of salt and malt vinegar to the whole meal before and during eating.

 

I don’t expect that a professional Chef, a French person or an Itailian person would be impressed with my meals, but they taste great, they are economical and they are filling. They are also the types of meals eaten by genuine British people.

 

Try some of them out, you may like them, my American family does, (except for the beans on toast of course).

 

Online Work

business cash close up commerce

I have been checking out Leapforce for the last 2 months to find out if a person can earn money from them online, and to top up my income of course. I have found that I can earn money from working on tasks for Leapforce. The initial step is to sign up as an agent for leapforce, you can register HERE

 

Once you are registered, Leapforce will show tasks that you are qualified for on their website and you can choose to work them. I cannot go into specific details of the project that I am working on due to confidentiality but it is one hour per day and pays $13.50 per hour. The hourly rate varies per project. The terms are that I will work one hour a day on the project with a minimum requirement of 5 days a week, although I can work all 7 days in a week if I wish. I have to keep a log of how long the daily task takes and enter that time on the invoice, which is found on the Leapforce website after I sign in. I have been honest and only entered the time that the task took. I can only claim a maximum of one hour a day, even if the task took me more than an hour, but I can enter less than an hour if the task took me less time, and I get paid accordingly. In general the daily task takes about an hour, give or take  a few minutes.

 

A Leapforce agent is considered a self-employed Leapforce at Home Independent Agent and U.S. based agents will need to submit a 1099-MISC for their earnings when they complete their taxes.

 

U.S. based agents can have payments for services deposited into a bank account. You will only be paid monthly, up to 30 days after Leapforce receives the invoice. I have been receiving my payments roughly 20 days after submitting my invoice which can only be submitted after the end of each calendar month.

 

The work is interesting and I don’t even notice working my one hour a day. I try to complete an hour a day, 7 days a week. The invoicing system may not suit someone who needs quick cash because of the payment system and one hour a day isn’t much, but it is in harmony with my theme of not putting all of your eggs in one basket ( meaning, don’t rely on just one source of cash) and I hope to get more work from this company. The hourly rate isn’t much either,  but since mid May, I have been paid $584 for roughly 43 hours of work. I have received the money, so I can verify that this is genuine……..complete the work and they will pay.

 

This is an experiment in finding independent sources of income outside of a traditional work environment. I don’t see this particular idea as ever making me wealthy but it does add some cash to the bank account. Going forward, I expect to make about $400 a month from this particular project until it ends, which will probably be in about a year. Before this project ends, I am hoping to be working on another couple of projects to keep the payments coming. The money is enough to cover payments for a new car, buy groceries etc, so it is useful and because I hardly notice completing the tasks, It feels like free money.

 

Interested?   Click HERE to register and read more about the company.

The Cost Of Living

grocery cart with item

The amount of money needed to live comfortably differs from City, State, country and region. I have been aware of this for a long time as I have traveled quite a lot, but I still haven’t managed to completely answer the question of why the cost of the same service or product differs so much according to location.

I remember travelling to Norway several times and the price of alcohol was about 6 times more expensive than it was in the U.K. When I first moved to the U.S.A., I could buy a carton of cigarettes in my State for less than the duty free price at the airport.

The most affordable State in the U.S.A. according to studies is Mississippi, followed by Indiana, and Michigan. Most studies use housing costs (rent and ownership), essentials such as food, healthcare and clothing. The studies also take taxes into account. The most expensive State to live in is Hawaii, followed by New York and California.

Unless you are independently wealthy or funded by other means such as pensions, self employment, passive income etc, then the amount that can be earned from work needs to be considered before moving to a more affordable State.

As a rough guide, the median household Income for the above States in 2015 was –

MS $40,593 (The least expensive State).

IN $50,532

MI $51,084

CA $64,500

NY $60,850

HI  $73,486 (The most expensive State).

A more in-depth study can be found HERE

 

The issue is that the same goods and services can differ in price, either higher or lower depending on each State, this difference adjusts the true national value of your household income. I understand that many people from the higher paid States move out to a State with a lower cost of living when they retire with a decent occupational pension, and this effectively gives them a pension raise. As house prices are usually in line with the cost of living, the new pensioner can sell a house which is probably paid for, or mostly paid for, take the cash and buy an upgraded house for the same price in the cheaper State.

 

People with more modest pensions can do the same, but the interesting thing is that these people would be even better off financially if they moved abroad. Some studies state that after looking at the cost of living in various countries, a couple with approximately $1200 per month pension could live a reasonably comfortable life in several desirable countries around the world, including some in Europe. A person could live very well on $1200 a month in the 3rd world but I doubt that this would be attractive to most.

Popular and emerging locations include Slovenia, Crete, certain places in France and Italy, Hungary, Portugal, and Malta. This is not an exhaustive list. All of the countries listed have been reported to be friendly to foreigners.

I find it interesting that a person on a modest fixed income from the U.S. could move to a desirable Mediterranean/ European location and live comfortably. I would think that learning the language would help with integration, especially in France as I have found that the French mostly know English but refuse to speak it. I suppose that is fair, as we expect people to communicate in English in the English speaking countries.

Why is there such a difference in the cost of living between countries and even our own country to a lesser degree?. I am still trying to figure this out,  I suspect that it may have something to do with control and exploitation, but i’m open to all opinions.

We are paying much more for the same services and goods in the U.S.A. than some other countries,  but we are still much better off price wise than Northern Europe and the U.K. in most respects.

We are lucky if we have independent funds, however modest, as according to studies the global median income is $1,225 per year and to make it into the top 1% of earners worldwide you only need $34,000 per year. This still doesn’t answer the price disparity question but it does give a lot of us more options than we originally thought that we had.

Freedom

white seagull flying on sky

 

What is freedom?

 

The dictionary definitions go something like this:

  • The absence of necessity, coercion, or constraint in choice or action.
  • The quality or state of being exempt or released usually from something onerous.
  • The power of self-determination attributed to the will; the quality of being independent of fate or necessity.
  • A political right.
  • Absence of slavery.

And several similar definitions.

I don’t really think that anyone feels that they have 100% freedom. Freedom to me means a total absence of any type of pressure or influence that compels me to do, say or think anything against my wishes and the absolute ability to do anything ( that does not negatively impact any other being) that I wish to do. For me, there are three main components to freedom.

 

Total financial independence

I believe that this is the most important source of freedom in the modern world, and if a person has this, they are well on their way to achieving total freedom. Work, the traditional source of money, is not enjoyable for many people and although it is true that in the western world, everyone is theoretically free to choose how they earn their money, there are many barriers to actually working in the field that one loves, and if one loves their work, it isn’t really work as we have come to understand it. Barriers can include education, intelligence (which is not the same as education), temperament, childhood influences/indoctrination from many sources, the financial situation that one is born into, mental outlook and many more barriers and influences that have an impact to a varying degree. The ideal situation is to have a multi million dollar bank account, but I suspect that even multimillionaires would object to me saying this and that they would cite many reasons why their money does not give them freedom. The one thing that nobody can deny, is that wealthy people certainly have more potential to achieve freedom than people without money and if they can’t achieve a large degree of freedom by using their money then they are not using it wisely.

According to various recent studies, 50%-70% of people hate their jobs. Most people end up tying themselves down to a job or field of work by accumulating debt as soon as they begin to earn money. Once the person is in debt, they have to continue the work that they come to dislike or hate, in order to pay the debt off, while also supplying cash for everyday survival. They continue on, hating and resenting the job or jobs for their whole lives. My experiment with freedom began with downsizing my job so that I have more time and energy to explore more fulfilling methods of securing financial freedom. I believe that financial independence is the key factor to freedom. The saying that “you need money to make money” is very accurate. If you don’t believe this, then you have never attempted to generate money,  independent of a “job”.

 

Mental Outlook

The manner in which a person views the world plays a huge part in how free he/she feels. One person could feel trapped and imprisoned, yet another person can feel free and fulfilled in exactly the same situation. Some people feel doomed from their first remembered thought, others feel empowered. I don’t know why this is, but I believe that the less optimistic mind can be trained by the individual to become more productive. A negative mind attracts negative things. The law of attraction is real. Even if you don’t believe this, Wouldn’t it be better to think positive thoughts rather than negative ones?. Affirmations, meditation and manifestation techniques can be employed to set your mind free. Try not to watch the news, most of it is propaganda anyway. If you study news broadcasts, some form of agenda becomes apparent, and it is not healthy for a person to subject themselves to this. Take some form of exercise regularly, physical exercise is good for mental outlook and it also helps your body to function as an effective tool for personal freedom.

 

No Unwarranted Obligations to Others

This is a hard topic to balance properly. Any decent parents will always feel an obligation to their children, and rightly so, as they are responsible for bringing the child into being.  If the parents are lucky, the child will also feel an obligation to minimize those obligations for the parent. A person should not settle for a life of drudgery, misery or mediocrity because of any other person’s expectations or behaviour. I have always found that if mutual respect is present between people, that the weight of anything that can be considered an obligation is reduced considerably, almost to a negligible degree. A parent that attempts to forcefully mold their child into something that the child doesn’t want to be, especially where work or marriage are concerned, is basically claiming the child as their property. I do not consider wise advice as part of this, as advice is given freely and can be acted upon, or ignored by the recipient.  

People who are conscious in their efforts to restrict you do not have your best interests in mind and ways to free yourself from such people should be made a priority. Obligations to others are accepted by people constantly, and if you feel that your service is worthwhile and makes you happy then it is not the type of obligation that I am referencing here. The particular freedom restricting element can more accurately be called an imposition.

bullion gold gold bars golden
Freedom?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I most definitely consider the possession of enough funds to be free of the shackles of “work” to be paramount. When I use the word “work”, I am referring to a job as an employee that one does not want to do by choice, but is compelled to do, in order to pay the bills, buy food, survive etc. Money seems to be a dirty word for many people, probably because they don’t want to be considered a mercenary individual. The world is organized around money however, and the more of it you have stored away somewhere, the more freedom of choice you have.

A person could always just go to a remote area of the world and live off the land of course, and if this idea is attractive, you could possibly find freedom without money, but opportunities to live like this are not very abundant today and most people from the developed world would miss their gadgets and labor-saving devices, but It is a possibility.

 

Quotes

  • “Whether you think you can, or you think you can’t–you’re right.” – Henry Ford

 

  • “The mind is everything. What you think you become”. – Buddha

 

  • “Freedom is the will to be responsible to ourselves”. – Friedrich Nietzsche

 

  • “The desire of gold is not for gold. It is for the means of freedom and benefit”. –  Ralph Waldo Emerson

 

  • “No one outside ourselves can rule us inwardly. When we know this, we become free”. –  Buddha

 

  • “ A friend is someone who gives you total freedom to be yourself”. –  Jim Morrison

 

  • “Every time you borrow money, you’re robbing your future self”. – Nathan W. Morris

 

  • “Financial Freedom is less about Financials and more about freedom”. – Manoj Arora

 

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Exercise With Dumbbells

bodybuilding close up dumbbells equipment

Dumbbells are about the most versatile piece of exercise equipment you’ll ever use or own. You can train any body part with them, they’re suitable for anyone-beginners, intermediate and pros-and can be used by people of any age to get fit. They’re also the ideal, regardless of your fitness goals. So whether you’re just looking to trim down, maintain or even build mass, dumbbells can be the right piece of equipment for you. Assuming that you’re doing the movements properly, when you train with dumbbells you mimic the body’s natural movements, considerably reducing the risk of injuring yourself.

The point today is to present a few little known, but highly effective dumbbell exercises-it’s always good to do something new. When the body’s muscles get too accustomed to the same routine day after day, week after week, month after month, your routine’s effectiveness is diminished. That’s why knowledgeable guys change things up every now and then so they can keep seeing gains and achieving the results they want.

Here are a few dumbbell training exercies that you probably haven’t heard of.

Dumbbell thrusters (legs, shoulders): Works the glutes and shoulders at the same time. Place an exercise ball behind your legs. Stand straight holding two dumbbells at shoulder height with palms facing each other about even with your shoulders. Squat down until your butt touches the ball, then thrust upward raising your arms towards the ceiling, while maintaining your palms facing the same direction. Squat down again lowering the dumbbells to the starting position, then repeat.

Dumbbell hamstring curl (hamstrings): Lie face down on a flat bench with your knees hanging over about two to three inches. Have someone tuck a dumbbell vertically between your feet-if you’re limber and not too clumsy, you can manage it yourself. Grasp the front two legs of the bench for stability. Then, without lifting your waist from the bench, keep your knees together tight and raise your toes (and the dumbbell) towards the ceiling until your shins are perpendicular to the floor.

Dumbbell ab crunch (abs): Lie on your back with your knees bent, feet flat on the floor, holding a dumbbell with both hands (one hand over each end of the dumbbell) close to your chest just below your chin. Keeping your butt and lower back on the floor, slowly roll your upper back off the floor, keeping your neck neutral. Pause and hold for a second or two and then return to the starting position and repeat.

Low dumbbell crossover (chest): This awesome move can completely isolate and pump up your pecs. It’s like the Low Cable Crossover but done with dumbbells to further isolate the pectoral muscle. With one foot forward for stability, grasp the dumbbells (hands facing forward), spread your arms until they’re at about a 45-degree angle and your hands are a few inches behind your hips. Lean forward slightly. Bring the dumbbells up and together, using a sweeping arc motion, stopping right in front of your lower chest. Pause for a full second, return to the starting position and repeat. Keep your arms slightly bent to be sure that you’re fully isolating the pecs.

Dumbbell press and fly combo (chest): This double-duty exercise keeps the pectoral muscles under tension throughout the movement. Position yourself for a regular dumbbell chest press. When your arms are fully extended, instead of dropping them back down to your chest, then slowly arc them out in a fly movement-without changing the position of your hands-until you get a nice stretch. Pause, return to the starting position and repeat.

Zero impact dumbbell row (back): Stand with your knees somewhat bent and lean over slightly, keeping your back straight. Hold the dumbbells so they’re in front of your thighs (palms facing your legs). Your elbows should be slightly bent. Bring the dumbbells out, back and up behind you in an arc, swinging your elbows back like a pendulum but maintaining control of the weight, keeping your back straight. Focus on contracting the back muscles. Return to the starting position and repeat.

Reverse incline hammer curl (biceps): Use fairly light weights for this one-it really isolates the bicep. Sit backwards on an incline bench adjusted to a 60- to 70-degree angle. With your arms hanging straight down, hold the dumbbells with your thumbs up, palms facing each other (hammer curl position). Curl the weights up until the just touch your shoulders. Squeeze, pause and repeat. If you pull your elbows back just a bit, it will put more emphasis on the long head of the biceps, which can otherwise be tough to train.

Wrong way tricep pullover (triceps): Lie sideways (perpendicular) with your upper back on a flat bench as though you were going to do a dumbbell pullover for your chest. Grasping one dumbbell with both hands, bring your arms up and behind your head-again, as though you are going to do a dumbbell pullover. But instead of trying to keep your arms straight, stretch your arms back, maintain the upper arms in a fixed position and bend your elbows down, lowering the dumbbell and stretching the triceps. Pause, squeeze, return to the starting position and repeat.

By Mike Westerdal 

Mike is the creator of the illustrated guide, “Dumbbell Routines & Exercises eBook”, that will Help You Increase Your Muscle Size And Improve Your Physical Fitness In 90 Days Or You Get To Keep This Breakthrough eBook FREE! More information Click Here

 

The Benefits Of Having Pets

 

blur care cat close up

Is it beneficial for us to have pets?. I wasn’t a pet person for a long time. I grew up without pets and I spent a good deal of my adult life without pets. I didn’t really think about them one way or another. I was vaguely aware that other children had dogs and cats but I didn’t ever feel deprived because of it. I have always had a respect for all living beings including insects and if I find an insect in the house, I will always remove it without killing or injuring it because insects have as much right to life as we do. I don’t know much about Buddhism, but I understand that they hold a similar belief about living beings.

I have experienced guilt when eating meat and the modern intensive meat production methods are horrendous. When I see photos of the way that animals are treated, it makes me wonder what we think that we are doing to living beings just to gain the benefit of cheap meat. I haven’t found a replacement for meat yet, but I think that I will have to sometime soon. I have always felt slightly guilty about eating animals, even before I became acquainted with pets.

If an animal was threatening harm to my family I would do what I had to do to protect them, but this is the only time that I would consciously injure any animal or other living being. Some people believe that plants have feelings too, but we have to eat something.

I was introduced to pets when I got married, specifically cats. I remember watching the first cat that we had, doing what cats do and it was a new and strange experience to me. We now have 3 cats. Two of them chose us and the third one was born to one of the cats that chose us.

Cat number 1, was feral and used to hang around in our back yard after it was born under the shed. This kitten approached me every time that I went into the back yard to smoke, it would sit next to me and it would want me to pet it. I didn’t pet it at first because I didn’t want to catch anything, but I eventual did. We then started to leave it a bowl of food and clean water in the yard every day. When we moved house, we tried to catch it to take it with us, but it would always run away. We still owned the house when we moved and after moving, I had to go back to the house to carry out some work and one day cat 1 appeared and sat a few feet away from me in the yard with it’s back to me the whole time. This was an obvious sign of disapproval from the cat. I saw that it had some injuries around it’s neck and we managed to catch it and take it to our new house. It lived in the garage for a week or so until a vet could check it out. The vet advised us that what appeared to be injuries was some sort of parasite in the skin. The parasite was eliminated, the cat entered our new house and has been with us for about 10 years now. The cat doesn’t go outside, by it’s own choice. If we leave a door to the outside open, it runs the other way, almost like it fears that we are going to throw it out.

Cat number 2 was born to cat number 1. Cat 1 was unknowingly to us, pregnant when we picked it up from the previous house and it appeared to get very sick after a few weeks. We took it to an emergency animal hospital and they told us that it was pregnant. Cat 1 had a litter of cats but only one survived due to the original vet giving it vaccinations while it was pregnant. We took cat 2 home in a small box that served as a bed and it was not expected to live. It lived and has been with us now for nearly as long as cat 1. Cat 2 doesn’t go outside. It sneaked out of the front door one day without us knowing. Later, we head a mewing and scratching at the front door and when we opened it, cat 2 sprinted inside, never going near an outside door again. It seems that it did not like it out there.

 

Cat 3 suddenly appeared outside our back door about 7 years ago. It sat at the door, looking into the house. Meowing constantly and at night we would hear sounds like it was being attacked. We started feeding it and in due course, it graduated to the garage. Cat 3 kept growling and attacking it’s own tail. We thought that it was crazy but we discovered that it had a broken tail. The vet amputated the tail and cat 3 has been very happy ever since.

 

Many people believe that pets are beneficial to humans, such as:

  • Lowering stress levels
  • Companionship for the lonely
  • Lowering heart attack risk
  • Helps keep older people’s brains sharp
  • Some pets encourage you to exercise, because they demand it.
  • A pet can reduce pain
  • Makes children less likely to get allergies

And many more benefits. Most of the results have come from various scientific studies.

There are also reported of pets having psychic powers and reports of pets saving their human’s lives.

I don’t like to use the phrase “owning a pet” because any pet owner will confirm that they don’t own their pet, it is more of a friendship and mutual understanding between the animal and human that they like living together and have a relationship of respect.

I still have not graduated to referring to the cats as he or she, I still say “it” but I don’t mean it as a degrading term, it’s just the way I am.

There are certain animal that have a revered status in the western world. Cats, dogs and horses come to mind. I have also know people with pet goats and monkeys. I cannot see any benefit of having reptiles as pets because I don’t think that they respond to a human at all, except to attack the human, given a chance.

From what I have observed, I believe that cats, dogs, chimps, gorillas and horses have a soul. It has been reported that some people experiencing a near death experience, go to, or through an area similar to a waiting room that is full of cats and dogs waiting for their humans to join them. I can easily believe this.

I feel that it is an honor to have a friendship connection to another species. My cats show me friendship every day and I return the feeling. I never did consider myself as a pet person, but being able to write this post highlights to me the fact that I definitely am an animal person. I try not to consider our cats as pets, but as different beings with different perceptions, not on an inferior level, just a different one, because who really knows what things animals perceive that we are totally unaware of.

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Inversion Therapy For Health

woman doing anti gravity yoga

Inversion therapy involves holding the body upside down or at an inverted angle for a period, usually for a few minutes at a time. The act of inverting the body is believed by many people to have beneficial health benefits.

There are several methods to achieve inversion. The most popular method is to use an inversion table, a specially designed piece of equipment that allows a person to clamp the ankle and lay back on a supporting bed. The bed can then be tilted to the desired angle. Other methods include gravity boots, headstands, handstands, hanging by the legs from a horizontal bar, hanging from strap supports and Yoga inversions such as the downward dog position.

The most well known benefit of inversion therapy is the relief of back pain. I have an inversion table and it works for me. I have had experience of lower back pain after certain exercise routines and my inversion table takes the pain away and seems to help the injury to heal faster.

Benefits Of Inversion

Some of the reported benefits of inversion therapy are:

  • Relief of back pain
  • Relief of joint pain
  • Strengthen ligaments, which results in strengthening  bones.
  • Maintain height
  • Regulate blood pressure
  • Improve posture
  • Control indigestion
  • Improve heart function
  • improve brain function
  • Assist the lymphatic system function
  • Improve mood, relieve stress and depression
  • Increased flexibility

I have found that regular inversion helps to relieve back pain from injuries and helps the injury to heal faster, It appears to help normalize my blood pressure, helps my muscles to recover faster from exercise, gets rid of headaches and neck/shoulder pain and makes me feel better in general. My inversion therapy session consists of full inversion daily, for 5-10 minutes per session on my inversion table.

I find that a good quality inversion table is the most convenient method for regular inversion therapy in the home. Most tables can be folded after use to minimize floor space and most tables allow the user to set the inversion to various angles, ranging from a few degrees right up to full inversion. It is wise to work up to full inversion slowly when beginning  a program because full inversion is very intense if you have not inverted before.

 

Precautions Before Starting Inversion Therapy

If you are considering inversion therapy and you have heart and circulation problems, eye conditions or any other conditions that requires regular doctor’s visits and/or medication, you should consult with your doctor before starting an inversion routine. Pregnant women and obese people should consult with a doctor before beginning inversion.

Manifest Your Desires

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There are many practitioners of manifestation, all have slightly different methods that they claim really work. The common theme in all of the methods is expressing gratitude for what you already have and a total belief that you already have whatever it is that you want.

Being able to manifest your desires comes from the belief that we are all energy at our core and everything that surrounds us is also energy. Many people also believe that our individuality is an illusion and that all people and things are connected within a universal frequency field. Quantum theory hints at this being a possibility. Some beliefs go as far as to state that each person has an element of the creator in him or her, that we are a fragment of the creator and therefore we have the power of the creator to manifest our desires when, where and how we desire them.

Others believe that as we are composed of energy, including our thoughts, then we can somehow tap into the universal creative power in order to manifest our desires. This sounds similar to the creator theory without the religious element. I am open minded and I would not discount any theory unless it was proven to my satisfaction that the theory was wrong and that isn’t going to happen any time soon.

All methods of manifestation have the common requirement that you must believe that you already have your desire in the “now”, the explanation for this is that your energy attracts your desires and if your thought process is “wishing” for something to appear, it attracts a life long experience of scarcity because the vibrations that you are giving out are of a” wanting for something” rather than “already having”, and the “wanting for” is therefore what you will attract. The methods vary as to how to express this belief of already having your desire. Meditation or visualization of the desire seems to be the generally accepted form of expressing belief that you already have your desire. Affirmations can play a part in the manifestation process for some and it seems to be an allied topic to me.

The TV program Star Trek: The Next Generation, had the holodeck, a room where objects, locations and people are simulated by matter, beams and fields onto which holographic images are projected, which appear solid to the touch. This matter is known as “holomatter”, and disintegrates when the program is ended. The Holodeck users can program their individual desires into the computer and experience them within the room for as long as they wish. As the theories in Quantum Physics have been updated and expanded upon, I wonder if it will ever become a reality, or are we already in a holodeck simulation?. The point of mentioning this is that it appears to be a (fictional) form of manifestation.

The theory some people have, that matter is a low vibration frequency, can have implications for manifesting desires. The thoughts from the brain are frequencies and once a thought has been released, it has the potential to materialize. Whether one can manifest desires or not is open to investigation. I suspect that it is easier to manifest a negative thought than a positive one because it is easier to concentrate on negative thoughts.

My suggested method for manifesting your desires.

  • Be clear on your desire and don’t try to manifest a whole list of desires all at the same time. Begin with a small goal.
  • Spend some time every day visualizing your desire. Visualize yourself experiencing the desire as if you have it already. Be very specific in your visualization.
  • Repeat positive affirmations to yourself every day.
  • Take some form of action towards your desire every day.
  • Be grateful for what you already have, and spend some time every day thanking God, the Creator, the Universe (whatever suits you) for your gifts.
  • Keep the routine going and don’t give up on it.

I would be interested to know if it works for you.