15 Power Meals: Eat Like A Pro!

Staying In Shape Does not Mean You Have To Give Up The Spice In Your Life!
It's a common myth. Everyone assumes that if you're going to commit to staying in shape, you have to sacrifice all the flavor in your diet and eat nothing but white rice, protein powder and chicken breasts day in and day out.

That's simply not true! We asked some of the top athletes to help explode that myth, and they were rushed to provide us with some of their favorite recipes. Here you'll find menus for every meal of the day – even dessert and late-night snacks.

Wait until you sink your teeth into these flavorful creations – you'll be amazed that something that tastes so good can be so good for you!

1. FRENCH CREPES
2 cups flour

2 large eggs

2 Tbs sugar

2 cups milk

2 Tbs Cooking oil

Combine the flour, sugar, eggs and milk and beat until smooth. The resulting batter should be the consistency of thick cream. Add oil to the batter and mix lightly. Spray an 8-inch crepe pan with non-stick cooking spray.

Ladle about c cup of the batter into the pan and rotate the pan to spread the mixture evenly. Cook the crepe until it looks firm and is light browned at the edges (about one minute). Turn the crepe over with a thin spatula and cook the other side about 30 seconds. Re-coat pan with non-stick cooking spray about every other crepe, or when crepes begin to stick.

Add your favorite sugar-free fruit filling to top off these thin, delicious breakfast favorites.

(* Standard Cup Measurement: 1 cup = 250ml)

2. FRUIT FLAVOURED OATMEAL
1 cup one-minute oatmeal

C cup raisins

C cup walnuts, chopped

1 banana, sliced

C cup skimmed milk

1 tsp artificial sweetener

Cook the oatmeal and place in a bowl. Add fruit and walnuts; mix in milk and sweetener and enjoy! Add cinnamon if desired.

3. BLUEBERRY PROTEIN PANCAKES
1 cup oatmeal

8 egg whites

C cup blueberries (frozen or tinned if not in season)

6 tsp sweetener

Mix all ingredients in a blender until consistency is smooth. Cook in pan coated with non-fat cooking spray; turn once to cook both sides. Makes one serving. Each serving consist of: protein 50g, carbohydrates 60g, and calories 440.

This recipe really packs the protein and carbs to give you energy for your morning workout.

4. EGG WHITE OATMEAL PANCAKES
8 egg whites

1 c cup Quaker Oats

2 tsp sweetener

Pinch of salt

1 tsp cinnamon

Blend all ingredients in a large bowl until mixture resembles pancake mix. Use a quarter of a cup for each pancake, pouring the mixture onto a hot frying pan. Cook until golden brown on each side and serve. This recipe delivers 30 grams of protein and 78 grams of carbohydrates.

These pancakes are great for dieting or anytime at all. Eat them plain or add your favorite jam or syrup.

5. OATMEAL PANCAKES OR WAFFLES
2-3 cups oatmeal (quick or old fashioned) or oatmeal flour

5 egg whites, lightly beaten

2 large apples

2 bananas

2 tsp ground cinnamon

T tsp sweetener

Grate the apples and mash the bananas. Mix the oats with egg whites and stir until well mixed and add sweetener and cinnamon. Preheat frying pan (for pancakes) or waffle iron (for waffles) to 375 ° F / 190 ° C. Add the apples and bananas to the mix and stir well.

For Pancakes: Pour slightly less than c cup batter for each pancake onto hot frying pan (lightly greased with non-stick cooking spray if necessary). Turn pancakes when top and edges look dry.

For Waffles: Cook in hot waffle iron (lightly greased with non-stick cooking spray) until steaming stops and the waffles look brown and dry.

Start your day right with this sweetener!

6. BEST-EVER PANCAKES
1 c cup porridge oats

8-10 egg whites

1 egg yolk

1 cup raisins

1banana (sliced)

1 cup strawberries (sliced)

C cup almonds (slivered)

C cup sodium free baby food (pear, apple sauce, banana or peach cobbler flavor).

2 tsp cinnamon

2 tsp sweetener

Mix oats in large bowl with egg whites and yolk. Pour into frying pan coated with non-fat cooking spray. Cook like a pancake, turning once to cook both sides. Transfer from pan to plate. Sprinkle with cinnamon and sweetener, and then spread other ingredients over the top.

7. MARINATED STEAK WITH HONEY-PINEAPPLE SAUCE
1 small onion, chopped

1 green pepper sliced

C cup white wine

C cup apple juice

C cup teriyaki sauce

2 tap soy sauce

1 clove fresh garlic, minced (or 1 tsp garlic powder)

T tsp ginger

16 oz very lean steak, cut into strips

C cup tinned crushed pineapple (unsweetened)

2 tsp cornflour

2 tsp honey

Non-stick cooking spray

In a medium mixing bowl combine onion, pepper, wine, apple juice, teriyaki sauce, soy sauce, garlic and ginger. Add steak, marinate in refrigerator for three hours or overnight for incredibly flavored meat. Remove steak from marinade. Grill for 3-4 minutes per side on a foil-covered grill pan with non-stick cooking spray. Meanwhile, pour remaining marinade into a saucepan. Add pineapple, cornflour and honey. Mix while heating over a low heat for three minutes. Pour sauce over steak and serve with rice.

Makes four servings. Each serving contains: protein 24g, carbohydrates 27g, fat 11g, fiber 1.5g, calories 303.

8. MEAL-IN-A-POTATO
2 large russet potatoes

1/3 cup skimmed-milk

C cup reduced-calorie margarine

C cup chopped low-fat mature cheddar cheese

1 Tbs chopped chives

Pinch salt (if desired)

Pinch black pepper

C cup tinned black beans

C cup low-fat cottage cheese

Preheat oven to 425 ° F / 220 ° C / Gas Mark 7. Scrub potatoes, then prick skins thoroughly with a fork. Place them on the middle shelf in the oven and bake for about one hour (they are done when you can easily pierce them with a fork). Cool for 10 minutes. Slit the tops and scoop out the insides into a medium mixing bowl, leaving the skins intact. Add milk, margarine, cheese and chives to the bowl and mash with a fork. Season with salt and pepper if desired. Stuff each potato skin with filling, place on a non-stick baking sheet and return potatoes to the oven for 5-10 minutes. Meanwhile, heat black beans in microwave. When potatoes are done, top each with half the beans and cottage cheese.

This soup-up potato is perfect for lunch, dinner or a post workout.

9. FRESH FISH SALAD
1 cup fresh tuna fillet

1 c cups fresh salmon fillet

1 cup iceberg lettuce

C cup red pepper

1 cup asparagus

Grill the tuna and salmon, adding some natural salt-free seasoning to taste. Chop the lettuce, red pepper and asparagus, and place in a bowl. When fish is ready, cut into small pieces and toss with salad. Add your favorite low-fat salad dressing or balsamic vinegar, and some walnuts for healthy fat.

If fish is not your game, try this recipe with chicken breast instead!

10. BLUEBERRY APPLE FILLET SALAD
3 oz of fillet of beef

4 cups of fresh spinach – discard the stems

2 oz blueberries (fresh if in season, if not use frozen or tinned)

1 large apple (sliced)

1 large tomato (sliced)

1 large onion (sliced)

1 oz oatmeal (uncooked)

2 Tbs balsamic vinegar

Salt and pepper to taste

Balsamic Dressing:

2 Tbs balsamic vinegar

1 tsp sweetener

1 cup water

Grill the fillet to your liking (rare, medium, etc). in a frying pan add a few drops of olive oil and then add the oatmeal and sliced ​​onion. Stir until golden brown. In a medium bowl, toss the spinach with the balsamic dressing and add the blueberries, sliced ​​apple and tomato. Sprinkle the roasted oatmeal over the top and slice the fillet of beef over the salad.

Makes one serving. Each serving consist of: protein 17g, carbohydrates 48g, fat 12g, calories 359.

11. YUGOSLAVIAN CHICKEN
8-10 oz of skinless, boneless chicken breasts, cut into cubes

3 cups green pepper strips

2 cups chopped fresh tomatoes

1 cup chopped onion

1 cup mushrooms

2 tsp extra virgin oil

1 tsp crushed gel

T tsp cayenne pepper

1 tsp Worcestershire sauce

Salt and pepper to taste

Heat one teaspoon of extra virgin olive oil in a non-stick frying pan. Add pieces of chicken breast; add salt and pepper. Sauté chicken lightly. As it browns, add one teaspoon olive oil, vegetables and spices into a second frying pan and cook for about five minutes. Pour vegetable mixture over chicken and serve.

Makes 4 servings. Each serving contains: protein 50-65g, carbohydrates 44-55g, calories 800.

12. HONEY-BOURBON PORK TENDERLOIN
3 X lb lb pork tenderloins

C cup diced onions

1 Tbs minced fresh ginger

C cup lemon juice

2 Tbs olive oil

C cup bourbon

4 cloves garlic minced

C cup low-sodium soy sauce

C cup honey

T tsp salt-free seasoning

T tsp black pepper

Cooking spray

Trim the fat from the pork. Combine onion and next 7 ingredients in a large bowl. Add pork to bowl and cover with cling film. Marinate in refrigerator for 30 minutes. Remove pork from bowl, reserving marinade. Sprinkle salt-free seasoning and pepper over pork. Spray grill with non-stick cooking spray. Place pork on grill under a medium-low heat. Cover with foil and grill for 30 minutes or until the meat is just slightly pink in the middle. Turn and baste the pork occasionally with the remaining marinade. (If you have a meat thermometer, use this to test the temperature of the meat: it should be a constant 160 ° F / 71 ° C).

When cooked, cut tenderloins into inch inch thick slices. Serve and enjoy.

13. FRUITY CARROT CAKE
2 cups wholemeal flour

1 t tsp bicarbonate of soda

1 tsp ground cinnamon

T tsp salt

T tsp ground nutmeg

T tsp cloves

1 c cup finely graated carrots

1 cup unsweetened apple sauce

1 cup vanilla fat-free yogurt

C cup dried dried fruit and raisin mixture

C cup brown sugar

C cup sugar-free apricot jam

3 egg whites

C cup crushed pineapple

2 tsp vegetable oil

1 tsp vanilla essence

Preheat oven to 350 ° F / 180 ° Cgas Mark 4. Spray a cake tin 9''x3 '' with non-stick cooking spray. Mix flour, bicarbonate of soda, cinnamon, salt, nutmeg and cloves in a large bowl. Add remaining ingredients, mix until well-blended. Pour into cake tin. Bake for about 45-50 minutes or until skewer inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool cake in tin for 10 minutes. Run knife around edges of tin to loosen and turn out.

14. STRAWBERRY BANANA LOAF
2 eggs

C cup oil

1 cup sugar

C cup mashed strawberries

C cup mashed bananas

1 c cups flour

C cup rolled oats

2 tsp baking powder

T tsp bicarbonate of soda

T tsp salt

In a bowl, beat eggs until frothy, stir in cooking oil, sugar, strawberries and bananas. In a separate bowl, combine flour, rolled oats, baking powder, bicarbonate of soda and salt. Stir to distribute evenly, then add to first bowl, stirring lightly. Spoon into a grown loaf tin. Bake in oven at 350 ° F / 180 ° C / Gas Mark 4 for about an hour or until skewer placed in center coming out clean. Leave to cool in the tin for about ten minutes, and then remove from the tin to finish cooling on a rack.

15. BEEF STROGANOFF
16 oz lean sirloin cut into cubes

2 oz sweet and sour pickles

2 oz onions

2 oz chopped tomatoes

1 cup soya milk

1 tsp cayenne pepper (optional)

8 oz cooked rice

1 Tbs olive oil

T tsp crushed pepper

T tsp paprika

1tsp garlic salt

Pour the olive oil into a frying pan; heat on high. Add the beef and seasoning with half the garlic and salt; stir until medium rare. Add the onions and pickles (and cayenne pepper if you desire a spicier stroganoff). Stir-fry for one minute, then add the tomatoes. Continue to stir and add the rest of the seasoning except the soya milk. Turn down the heat and allow to simmer. Add the soya milk, continue to stir. Remove the pan from the heat before the soya milk begins to coagulate. Serve over the rice.

Makes 4 servings. Each serving contains: protein 24.7g, carbohydrates 20g, fiber 1.6g, fat 9g, calories 258.

How to Choose the Right Acoustic Panel

If you do not know anything about how to improve room acoustics, it can be overwhelming at first to understand all of your options. First of all, you should know what frequency of sound you want to absorb. For most settings, you'll just need to absorb the mid to high frequencies. An example would be an office or a daycare center, where most of the sound bouncing around the room is going to come from the human voice. In this case you'll just need to get acoustic panels. However, if you need to absorb low frequencies (bass), you'll also need to add bass traps. Examples include home theaters and recording studios.

The size of the panel is not that important. You'll just need to get enough acoustic panels to cover enough square footage of the room. The density of the material does not have much of an impact on the acoustic performance. A 6 lb per cubic foot density core material is not necessarily going to be better than a 3 lb density. The density just reflects to the rigidity of the material. If the material is rigid enough, you could just wrap fabric around the acoustic insulation and you would not need a frame to support the material.

It's also important to consider the fire rating of the acoustical panel. It's generally not a good idea to have flammable material hanging all over your walls. Many manufacturers may offer to topally treat the fabric covering with chemicals so that the fabric is flame resistant. This means the flames will self-extinguish if it catches on fire. Topically treated fabric will lose its flame resistance over time. Since the acoustic panels are not going to be washed, the flame resistance of the fabric should hold up over time, but it is probably a better idea to go with inherently flame retardant fabric if the fire rating is important. If the acoustic panels are going to be installed in places of assembly such as a church or restaurant, you will want to check with your local fire marshal or building inspector to make sure the panels will comply with your local building codes.

There are lots of companies that manufacture acoustic panels and sell them online, so you do have lots of options when shopping for acoustic panels. You can even look in your local yellow pages to find an acoustics engineer to help you treat the acoustics of your space, although this can be an expensive option.

Exercise To Reduce The Tummy In 7 Days With Dietary Tips For Weight Loss

Our abdominal region is a main source of support for our entire body. It is where most of our primary organs are located and the area which provides structural stability for our body. Hence it is important for us to keep the abdomen strong and reduce fat accumulation using diet and exercise. With a strong abdomen comes improved mobility, endurance and strength for our body. As your body becomes more physically able, you can achieve a total body work out. However you must be sure to not only focus on abdominal exercise. A total body work out is the true solution of exercise to reduce your tummy in 7 days.

Exercise To Reduce Your Tummy In 7 Days, A Basic Approach

Most exercises which involve abdominal pressure and tension will reduce belly fat. In addition, exercise forces us to engage our core for the purpose of supporting our back. A women’s workout routine which combines various abdomen strength exercises is ideal.

Follow these 7 steps for a basic exercise routine to reduce the size of your tummy:

  1. 10 Leg Lifts
  2. 10 Leg Raises
  3. 12 Crunches
  4. 20 Flutter Leg Kicks
  5. 10 Russian Twists
  6. A 60 second plank
  7. 2 minute break, then repeat all of the above until exhaustion

Cardio exercise is a highly recommended choice for fat-burning physical activity. Across your entire body, cardio works well to diminish fat, including your stomach region. Believe it or not, jumping rope in one place at home is a very effective way to tone your stomach. In addition, side crunches and back kicks force your abdomen to work. These are just some examples of exercise to reduce your tummy in 7 days.

Digestion In The Role Of Abdominal Fat Reduction

Digestive health plays a large role in your stomach mass and it is best controlled through proper digestion. With a diet rich in fiber and the use of probiotics, you will defecate at an optimal rate. Regularity of your bowel movements promotes a smaller stomach while irregularity causes belly fat. Unfortunately some people become constipated due to poor dieting or falling asleep right after meals. Each of these bad habits cause poor digestion and the accumulation of fat around our stomach. Reduce your sugar, fried and processed food intake and replace it with fresh produce. Secondly, if you start to feel drowsy after meals, get up from your seat and walk around. Ensure that you apply this nutritional and lifestyle advice to your own life and get enough cardio exercise.

In conclusion, a dedicated approach to your health and physical activity is the solution to reduce your stomach size. Focus in particular on workouts that challenge your core as well as your total body. Also, stay way from fatty foods which introduce unnecessary mass to your waistline. Finally, an exercise to reduce your tummy in 7 days requires a combination of diet, lifestyle and physical activity.

Modern Architecture Trends

The United States is seeing a huge building boom that is changing many city landscapes very quickly. The new style of architecture that mixes modern and contemporary styles seems to be winning. The evidence is easy to see in how long it takes a new home to sell. Today’s buyers want the modern look, and they are paying up for the modern and contemporary style. Here are 4 home renovation ideas that can help achieve that look.

  1. Open Concept Living Spaces
  2. Eat-In Kitchens
  3. Metals and Wood Stairs
  4. Industrial Accent Materials

Nothing says modern like open concept living spaces. One of the best ways to change a home’s feel is to open up the living, dining and kitchen into one large living space. Not only is this style in demand, but it also is very functional. The idea of open concept living areas gives the home a social environment.

Eat-in kitchens are a must, as it works directly with the open concept living space. It is a functional design that allows social interaction between the kitchen and the table. It is perfect for entertaining and if you have children it lets you keep an eye on them while you cook, watch the game, or clean up.

Metal and wood staircases not only give a very modern look but they are also highly functional. They are much safer than wood stairs and they allow for a variety of accent materials such as wood, glass or stone stair treads. Modern styles work well with high end accents and they give the home an elegant feel. Metal stairs can be used indoors and outdoors. One signature look of the modern home is the clean lines of metal handrails that are used on balconies and stars.

The most defining feature of modern style home is the simple use of industrial materials such as stone, concrete, steel and glass. Many modern architects like to use new materials that are strong and last long. Using clean simple lines with different materials give this style it’s clean look. Some accent features that are common in many home renovations are using stone tile for walls, thick glass for doors/ balcony handrails, and even reclaimed materials such as wood from old barns and buildings. Even industrial style barn doors on a open track are used.

In the end, you can get that modern look by simply dressing up a few key items in your home.

Exploding Myths About Learning

When I was a child, and a string of Christmas tree lights went out, it was my job to replace each bulb one-by-one to discover which one was burned out. To enrich our effectiveness in work or study, we need to first forget what is obstructing our progress. We need to ensure that we are adequately hydrated and nourished. A person dehydrated by just five percent has a sustained cognitive ability of thirty percent. The right types of food will supply the brain with its fuel – glucose. As well, our immediate surroundings must be factored in. Things like temperature, illumination, cleanliness, acoustics, and support materials. A competitive atmosphere is built into the school format, and this discourges some who are less visual or auditory than others.

Ninety-five percent of our behaviors are automatic. They are driven by the subconscious mind, which faithfully carries out clear directives. Like computer programs, these patterns or habits are often established in early childhood, and operate flawlessly until they are changed. This can explain self-sabotage, difficulties with motivation, discipline, and attitudes.

Whether you are a student, or already in the work, you have a need to take in information in the most efficient manner possible. For the next few moments, suspend your belief in everything you know about how to learn. Keep an open mind to new concepts.

Some people still believe that incoming data ( information ) reaches the conscious mind first , and then somehow gets processed so that some of it finally reaches long-term memory. Actually, the opposite is true. Initially, all data hits the subconscious for processing. The brain's priority is survival. If the new information is not threatening, then it is compared to existing data. If it's not needed, it is deleted. The remaining data is sorted and filtered. Some is handed off to the conscious mind for processing, and some is consigned to long-term memory. This all happens in a flash. The subconscious mind operates at 800 times the speed of the conscious mind.

Why can not people remember things when they are nervous? I am sure that you've heard of the body's reaction to threat. It's called fight-or-flight. It is typified by rapid breathing, and a diversion of oxygenated blood from the visceral area to muscles. As well, blood moves from the brain's thinking area ( frontal lobes ) to that part of the brain that is responsible for survival reactions ( reptilian brain ). Under stress, we just do not think as well.

We learn by taking information through all our senses. The top three ways we learn is seeing, hearing, and touching. Most instructors do not think that learning through touch and movement is useful beyond the lower grades. Generally speaking, school systems cater to visual and auditory learners. Those which principal learning mode is kinesthetic ( touch, movement, experience ) operate at a distinct disadvantage. This group makes up a large portion of high-school dropouts.

The concept of different learning styles goes far beyond just visual, auditory, and kinesthetic. I am sure you know that most people have a dominant hand and a dominant brain hemisphere. People also have a dominant foot, dominant eye, and dominant ear. The configuration of how any one person is wired may show one of a possible 32 unique learning styles.

Occidentally, trainers instructing according to how they themselves learn. They blatantly disregard the fact that many of their learners do not share the same approach. This non-inclusive teaching can be remedied by including a number of simple measures. The use of flip charts in lieu of presentation slides is more kinesthetic. It encourages learners to pace themselves with the lesson as it progresses, rather than "reading ahead" and not listening to the instructor. Flip chart pages can be placed around the room to be used as review points. These reviews are done at the beginning of the next class, in groups of three walking around the room ( kinesthetic activity ). The small group format increases the chance that each student will be discussing the points with classmates which learning styles are different. This enables new perceptions to emerge.

The 5 Most Preferred Nike Dunks

Though Nike Dunks have been around for many years now and they have introduced many styles and models since then over the years, some of them still remain fresh and are preferred by many over the others. Given the opportunity and availability of stock, many would still purchase these preferred styles of Nike Dunks as under.

They are not mentioned in any particular order. So here goes:

a) The Dontrelle Willis Dunks

They are from the Nike Collection Royale and were exclusively meant for those members. The very initial lot of shoes released was priced at $90 and was known as the Lebron James variety of the “King of Spades” fame. Some other designs that merit mention are the Ronaldinho number 10 fame Air force Clubs shoes, the Serena Williams 2 of hearts collection and the actual Dontrelle Willis dunks named after the renowned opening pitcher for the Detroit Tigers.

b) The Osaka Dunks

It is not surprising that Japan is a great market for Nike and two such preferred styles of Nike Dunks originated there. The Osaka Dunk, also known as the Doutonbori Dunk was named to celebrate the food of Osaka and as a tribute to the very famous drumming doll icon known as the Doutonbori. This Nike Dunk is also one element of the 4-pack design that was promoted as the Japan City Attack Pack commemorating the cities of Osaka, Nagoya, Tokyo and Fukouka. The design was very creative in releasing this collection within a box made of wood and displaying an insole that showed the Osaka street.

c) The Nagoya – Golden Dolphin Dunk

This Nike Dunk was the second of the two released as part of the Japan City Attack Pack and the motif of the Golden Dolphin was chosen carefully to reflect the significance of the city which is the fourth largest in the country of Japan. Its shimmering metallic golden color along with the superb mint green lining towards the inner truly gives it a majestic look. In terms of lending continuity to the motif, the pair has designs of fish scales at its back and is also double stitched for added resilience.

d) The Vandal Valentine’s Day Limited Dunk

This was produced in very limited quantity and France was the first country where it was released. The artwork was very striking showing a woman on one side and the king on the other. The letter Q added near the design of the King adds further dignity to the overall artwork.

e) The 1 Ice Blue Dunk

This premium pair of Dunks had a metallic blue finish to its body to give it that shiny look and acquires a very attractive appearance when worn with the sun shining. It also boasts of the Air Zoom technology patented by Nike giving it wonderful comfort.

Top 4 Cichlid Fish Diseases To Watch Out For

Cichlid Diseases:

Although unpleasant, discussing disease with any animal is an important part of pet ownership. Knowing what to look for and what to do will (in the long run) keep everyone healthy and happy. Before we get into the cichlid diseases, make sure you have a back-up plan in the form of an aquarium that you will use for quarantine purposes. This is most important as sick cichlids will need to be placed away from the other cichlids (kind of like a hospital).

Here are the top 4 cichlid diseases to watch out for:

1. Cotton Wool Disease (fungal infection) can be identified by erratic swimming, damaged fins,

coating of the scales (grayish in color) and patching in the gill area.

Cotton Wool Disease can be easily prevented by simple tank cleaning and maintenance. Make sure all foods (and carcasses if any) are removed and the aquarium is kept clean.

Cotton Wool Disease is contagious so quarantining will be necessary and your cichlid moved as soon as possible.

2. Hexamita (“hole in the head”) can be identified by weight loss, appetite loss and indentations in

the head area (hence the term “hole in the head”). The best preventative is proper diet and good water quality. If you suspect Hexamita, immediately quarantine your cichlid (when in doubt; separate).

3. Swim Bladder Disease is a disease that interferes with buoyancy. This disease will cause your cichlid to swim erratically at or near the top of the aquarium. The #1 cause of this cichlid disease is poor diet or over feeding (which can and often does cause bloating and gas).

4. Cichlid Fish Tuberculosis is the worst of the worst when it comes to cichlid diseases! Cichlid tuberculosis can destroy (wipe out) an entire population very quickly! This is highly contagious and symptoms of this highly contagious cichlid disease include loss of appetite (which is a sign of most cichlid diseases) and especially a stomach that is sunk in. If you notice (or even suspect) these,quarantine your cichlid immediately and if another aquarium is available, quarantine the other cichlids as well until the situation is under control!

It’s unfortunate, but ALL life gets sick from time to time and the real secret is knowing how to identify the problem and then what to do. Always remember that the #1 prevention of sickness and disease is in fact knowledge. without it, you’ll never know what to look for or how to treat it. To your happy cichlids!

Tim

Deck Building – Things to Consider Before Building a Deck

There may be several reasons for you to build a deck, the foremost being that you’ll be able to expand your living space and create a place for you and your family to enjoy during fine weather conditions. However, at the same time, you should also consider carefully all the reasons for desiring to build a deck i.e. what functions it will serve for you and most importantly its purpose. Doing this will allow you to properly plan and design a deck that is not only inviting but also functional!

Even for all the do-it-yourself guys, constructing a deck is not very easy which they can tackle quite comfortably. For the rest of you, there are a number of deck building contractors to do the job to perfection.

The very first step in planning a deck is to work out where to build it. For this you need to consider the size, the shape, the location and the neighboring landscape of the deck. Some of these features may be more important to you than the others, but you should always keep all of them in your mind when you plan, design and build a deck. Some additional factors to be considered are:

1. Access –Will you be building the deck in a convenient location? Is there proper access to and from the house to the deck? Is there an existing wall or a door that needs to be removed?

2. Direction –Which direction does your residence face? This is important because if you put your deck facing the sun, you might need to think how you will get shade from the sun’s heat, otherwise your deck may simply be usable. In this case a good deck builder will suggest you to incorporate lattice barriers into your design. These offer shade from the sun and also give protection from cool winds.

3. Privacy –This is very important. You must make sure that your deck design offers you privacy from your neighbors.

4. Design –Your deck should look like an extension to your house. If you do not have the skills necessary for designing a deck that blends well with your house, you should think about hiring a professional deck builder. A deck building expert will assist you with planning the design of a deck, determining which materials need to be used and a rough cost estimate of your project.

5. Material –The most common deck building material is wood, like cedar and redwood, which can be either stained or sealed. You can also opt for recycled plastic materials in composite decks.

Once all of the above considerations are thought out, it is time call a deck builder and to begin your new deck project. Have fun on your new deck!

8 Smart Ways for a Full Body Workout

Are you trying to follow a workout routine and are unable to do so because of a hectic schedule? Many of us find it a bit of a challenge to follow a workout regime because we are so entangled and caught up in our daily routines that we are unable to make extra time.

Often it is when we fall ill, or when the doctor orders us to insert a workout session in our lives every day for at least an hour; then we realize its significance. Going to a gym, and then planning to take up a workout routine which blends in well with our daily body needs, vary from person to person.

Here are the top 8 smart ways for a full body workout session to make your gym time more productive.

Measure the Weights

Don’t just start off with lifting the heavy weights straightaway. According to the experts; this is one of the biggest mistakes you can make if you are starting off with a gym routine. Start with slow and steady steps. Begin with lifting small weights and then gradually increase the weights once your stamina is built up.

Maximum Body Training

For all those who regularly follow a good gym routine, Tabata Protocol is a familiar term. This is a type of gym exercise which helps you to strengthen the muscles of your neck and back. Basically, this method is used in Aerobics. It is also known as the 20:10 method; where you need to repeat 8 rounds, follow for 20 seconds, then take 10 seconds rest, and then repeat.

Kettlebell Usage

Also known as the kettlebell swing, this workout move is well known for better performance, especially if you are an athlete. This exercise improves the performance of your heart and back muscles. Moreover, it also builds up your stamina and increases your muscular strength. Start with 20 swings in 3 blocks and take it up to 200 swings, or 20 sets, with at least 30 second intervals in between.

Arrange the Workouts

You can arrange your workout sessions in supersets. For instance; you can pair up two different kind of cardio exercises and perform them one by one, parallel to each other, in one set. Combine the dumbbell sets with squats or, reverse lunges with pull-up exercises, and so on. Keep on repeating them in short intervals for increased performance.

Do the Drop Sets

After you have built up the required stamina for lifting heavy weights; start decreasing the loads. According to experts; gradually decreasing the weights is known to cause immense improvement in muscular volume and strength. You can do this with any kind of exercise and it will not impact heavy on your fatigue levels as well.

Measure the Metabolic Stress

Keeping strict rest periods and your metabolic stress levels in check will help you to build up volume and stamina in less time. So, what exactly are the metabolic stress levels? These are the levels which tend to decrease via cellular effect as you follow your gym routine regularly, thus resulting in increased muscular strength.

Take the Stairs

While following a good exercise routine every day make sure that you don’t break the flow, even when you are not in the gym. Going to the office in the morning? Use the stairs instead of going via elevator. Take small breaks between your routine and walk around a bit. Don’t relax to the extent that you don’t feel like going to the gym in the evening.

Follow a Healthy Diet

Apart from following a good gym routine, don’t forget to take care of your diet as well. A healthy diet and a good exercise regime goes hand in hand and you cannot achieve optimum results by skipping any one of them. Take lots of fruits and vegetables, lean meat and proteins and friendly fats in your diet. Moreover, drink an ample amount of water to keep yourself hydrated and healthy.

Metals Used in Modern British Coins

We handle coins on virtually a daily basis. We talk about their worth, and collectors like us discuss their designs in great detail. But unless the coin is some precious metal we rarely investigate what metals make up the coin and why they were used. So I thought I would.

Can we use any metal?

Actually, no. We have to remember that coins are the physical and practical manifestation of money. We handle them, store them and exchange them on a very regular basis. So coins must have some fundamental properties

Coins must be safe to touch.

We can’t have radioactive coins or made from material that would be toxic to humans.

Coins need to be durable.

We would like coins to have a long life of 30 years of more. The metal used must be fairly hard wearing and not decompose due to the constant handling of humans or from the weather. Coins that would rust quickly are no use to us. So the metal needs to have high wear resistance and anti-corrosive properties.

Coins need to be easy to manufacture.

We need to have tens of millions (or more) of coins in circulation. We must be able to used efficient processes to manufacture this number. We use stamping and pressing so the metal need to be soft enough for use to use dies to do this.

The value of the metal must be less than the face value of the coin.

If we made pennies using gold they would disappear to the smelters as fast as they were minted and the country would be bankrupt!

It’s not always obvious as you may think, as conditions change with time. Pre-1992 British pennies were 97% copper with 2.5% Zinc plus 0.5% tin, an alloy known as Bronze. Twenty years later this meant there was 1.5 pence of copper in each penny.

So the range of metals suitable is limited and in most cases alloys of one or more metals are used.

Coin metals have changed over the years

To prevent the penny problem described above, from 1992 the British penny is actually copper-plated steel, consisting of 94% steel and only 6% copper.

America had a similar problem. Cents were made from copper (except during the War years when copper became scarce) but nowadays cents are copper plated zinc.

Silver was a popular material for circulating coins from very early days. In Britain before 1921 silver coins (like shillings, florins, halfcrowns) were 92.5% pure silver (sterling silver, the rest usually copper). This became 50% silver and by 1947 there was no actual silver in “silver” coins.

Cupronickel (75% copper, 25% nickel) became the popular choice to replace silver. Cupronickel is shiny like silver and highly resistant to corrosion in seawater. However, by 2011 the copper price was sufficient to move the lower denomination silver coins (5p, 10p) to use nickel-plated steel (94% steel, 6% nickel).

50 pence pieces are still Cupronickel (75% copper, 25% nickel), as are £5 coins (which replaced the 25p crown in 1990). For some reason, 20 pence coins are called Cupronickel but have a different ratio of 84% copper, 16% nickel.

As coins last much longer than banknotes, the One-Pound note was replaced with a one-pound circular coin introduced in 1984. To give it a gold-like colour the alloy was 70% copper, 24.5% zinc and 5.5% nickel.

Bi-metallic Coins

Bi-metallic Coins have been around for some time but not in the UK. There was a tin farthing with a copper plug in 1692 but for most purposes the £2 coin was a first.

The Two Pound (£2) coin is a bimetallic coin introduced in 1998 (although the first are dated 1997). The outer circle is Nickel-Brass (76% Copper, 20% Zinc, 4% Nickel) and the inner ring is Cupronickel (75% copper, 25% nickel).

Having different materials for outer and inner circle means that the outer circle can be harder then the inner circle, giving protection to the coin. It also makes the coin more difficult to duplicate as counterfeiting is an eternal problem with circulating coinage.

Unfortunately, coins are much easier to forge than banknotes. By 2014 it was estimated that 3% of the round pound coins were counterfeit and the Royal Mint redesigned the one-pound into a 12-sided bi-metallic coin with many built-in security features.

The new one-pound coin was launched in 2017. The outer ring is gold coloured nickel-brass (76% Copper, 20% Zinc, and 4% Nickel) and the inner ring is a silver coloured nickel-plated alloy. The Royal Mint struck 300 million of them!

Precious Metal Bullion and Proof Coins

UK gold coins are basically the gold Sovereign and the gold Britannia and their families.

Years ago the sovereign was a working coin that was often handled and as gold is a very soft metal copper was added to make the coin harder and more resistant to wear. The gold sovereign is 22 carat, which is 91.67% gold as in the traditional ratio of 11/12ths gold, 1/12th copper.

These days bullion coins are only lightly handled and proof versions are almost never touched, so the UK has gone with the trend and the gold Britannia is minted in 999.9 gold (99.99%).

Silver Britannia’s are 999 silver. The Royal Mint also uses Platinum for some coins at 0.9995 standard.

Some Silver coins are gold plated. The Alloy of gold and silver is called Electrum.

Background Information On Labiaplasty

Labiaplasty is a form of surgery that involves reducing the size of the flaps of skins that are found on either side of your lady parts. The reasons behind having this surgery are mostly cosmetic, with some women being uncomfortable with their size, or some hating the way they look. If you are considering having it done, you should be aware that it is perfectly normal for most women to have these extra folds of skin. It is nothing to be accused of.

In terms of costs, it costs more than most cosmetic procedures. This is because of the amount of risks that are involved with the procedure. Before booking an appointment with any surgeon, it is important that you go over the risks with your doctor because he / she may be in a better position to inform you on whether or not undergoing the surgery will be the best decision for you. If there is nothing wrong, you may want to consider talking to a counselor before you commit yourself to surgery.

Cost

Depending on the size of your lady parts, and whether there are other complications involved, the cost of having surgery done varies from patient to patient. On average, it can cost anywhere between $ 2000 and $ 9000. There may be other costs such as follow up appointments or initial consultations that may not be included in the figure quoted. Always ask for information on any additional costs you may incur before committing to the surgery. The NHS may cover some of your costs only if they feel that your lady parts are abnormal or pose a threat to your health. Other than that, you would be responsible for funding the surgery.

Choosing a Clinic

With the number of cosmetic surgery clinics, it can seem almost next to impossible to find the one that would suit your needs. You could narrow it down by looking at certain factors. One of them is the kind of qualifications they have. If possible, ask where they are a part of a recognized association such as the Australian Society of Plastic surgeons. They have to be certified to be legally allowed to practice. You also need to ask concerning the number of successful surgeries that they have conducted over the course of three years. This will help you gauge wherever they have the right skills to perform the surgery on you.

During the Procedure

The surgery involves reshaping or shortening of your lady parts. Either general or local anesthetic may be administrated. The whole surgery can be done in less than 2 hours. The unwanted parts will be shortened using either a scalpel or a laser.

Recovery

You will require several weeks or a couple of months to recover fully. You may need to take some time off work. During this healing process, you are required to keep the area clean to prevent infection. Avoid wearing tight clothes that may constrict movement and prevent air flow. Avoid any inconvenience with your partner for a couple of weeks.

Can I Cut Off a Mole Myself?

Many people are asking themselves currently, can I cut off a mole myself? The possibility of doing this is there, but you should make yourself aware of the risks that are involved with doing such a bizarre self-help method for getting rid of a pesky mole.

First of all, most people that are willing to cut off their mole, are tying it off with some sort of string-like material such as dental floss and then they are simply snipping it off with a pair of nail clippers. I don’t know about you, but this method seems to be a bizarre way of torturing yourself.

Even if you successful partially freeze the area using an ice cube, there still is going to be a lot of pain involved. Nerve endings are intertwined with the root of a mole and the chance of doing this pain free is very low.

Also, any time you cut into the lower levels of your skin, which you will have to do if you attempt to cut off your mole, you had to be careful that you do not introduce another virus or some sort of bacteria into the opening that you have created. You could at least ensure that you wipe the area with hydrogen peroxide afterward.

In other words, it is totally possible to cut off a mole by yourself, but you do have to take some sort of precaution when doing so. I feel it that it is better to use a home remedy that will slowly kill the mole until it falls off on its own.

Cleaning Trout – As Easy As 1-2-3

Many people find cleaning a trout to be a daunting task, seeing as how a trout's scales are not as pronounced as many fishes scales are. A fish such as a Bass, for example is a bit easier to clean, seeing as how its scales and skin are thicker, but a trout really is not that much harder to learn how to clean and get ready for the table. In reality, it's as easy as 1-2-3. I'm going to assume you have a filet knife is hand or within reach, when these steps take place.

1) The first thing to do is make sure the trout is dead. Now turn it so that the fishes back is in the palm of your hand. Make sure you have a good grip on this fish, so it does not slip and cause you to cut yourself. A wet trout can be slicker than a freshly greased snake!

2) Locate the anus towards the tail end if the fish (for the uninitiated this is a small round hole). While holding the dead trout tight, insert the knife into the anus about a 14 of an inch. Now simply slice down the length of the fish, just cutting through the skin. What you're basically doing is gutting the fish. Once the slice is made down the length of the fish, simply remove and discard the innards.

3) Now, holding the trout in the same position (on its back, in the palm of your hand) you'll notice a nein that extends along the entire length of the fish. Using your thumb, this must be removed. Use the nail of your thumb as a sort of shovel and scrape this red vein out. When you have it loosened up, simply shake the carcass in the water to remove anything that may be left over. At this point, insert your knife into the gill area and make a cut. Now using your fingers, remove the gills. Rinse the entire carcass.

What you have now is a cleaned trout. It's as simple as that. After a bit of practice, this entire process takes minutes. Some people leave the heads on and some people remove the head of the trout, the choice is yours. The bottom line is that you now know how to clean a trout. At the end of the day it really is as easy as 1-2-3. For more simple tips such as this simply click here .

Hot Trends in the Software Development Industry

The software development industry is dynamic. From time to time, new changes in software development are incorporated which makes this industry robust. There used to be a time when more and more individuals prefer job options in the IT sector. In those days, the role of software developer or engineer gained significance. In those days, especially in the software industry there was limited number of technologies. Java, C ++ were common in those days. Situations are different nowdays. Chronologically, many new technologies came into existence. These include Ruby, Python, Objective C. Learning a few computer languages ​​does not make one ready for the job market, except one acquires some extra skills.

Mobile

In recent times, mobile or smartphone has become an indispensable part of an individual. It is used for communication. Nowadays, the businesses across the world, develop websites which are mobile friendly. With the increase in popularity of IOS and Android based mobile phones, companies across the world seek the services of professionals who are expert in app development. Research reveals that employers of corporate firms tend to hire professionals who have adequate exposure in mobile app development.

Big data

IT companies work with big data. They collect huge amount of data for that purpose. When it comes to managing or organizing the data then they find it really difficult to do so. One of the hot trends in the software development industry, from the employer's perspective is the requirement of data analyst, data scientist, computer system analyst. Those who are directly associated with the IT industry, for them, working with data becomes prerequisite.

Cloud

Often we as computer or mobile internet users tend to save important documents in the storage devices including the cloud storage device. The advantage of using cloud storage to save data is that one can safely choose to fire other hardware where the same data has been stored. The cloud technology introduces the need to hire data scientist and cloud security professionals. The mobile devices along with the cloud technology allows us to seamlessly access data, either for personal use or for professional purposes. With the proliferation of cloud technology there is an increase in the demand for workers who are skilled in cloud computing, cloud security.

Software Development

The IT companies are trying to bridge the gap between the developers and the operations. This is with the objective to serve the clients, customers in a much better way. The Software engineers are very much in demand. These professionals allow a business to bridge the gap between developers, operations and theby help in the delivery of quality products or services to the customers.

UI engineers

In software development, both front-end and backend development are equally important. The companies feel the need to hire UI engineers who can help in the creation of consumer focused mobile and web applications. The UI engineers play an important part in a software development company as more and more IT companies are creating software that is user-friendly and intuitive.

However, some of the other hot trends in the software development industry include the device mesh, ambient user experience, 3D-printing materials, information of everything, advanced machine learning, automated agents and things, adaptive security architecture, advanced system architecture, mesh app and service architecture, internet of things architecture and platforms to name a few.