Insulated Curtain

At times it sees as if we know so much more than our parents, not to mention their parents before them. Whether it's going outside with a wet hair (which has been proven to not cause a cold) or smoking and drinking while pregnant (both of which has been proven conclusively to harm an unborn child), with time often comes clarity – as well as plenty of scientific studies to back it up.

But from time to time we realize that Mom and Dad (and Grandma and Grandpa) sometimes really did know best. Previous generations, especially those who lived during the Great Depression, knew that in order to preserve precious heat, it was necessary to have an insulated curtain in a bedroom. While oil, gas and coal are precious resources, so too is an insulated curtain.

When times are tough and cranking up the heat means a headache when the energy bill arrives, an insulated curtain can be a miracle worker. To keep the frigid winter air at bay when thermostat is begging for some relief, some insulation on the windows can go a long way in staying toasty warm and cozy.

And there are benefits in the summertime, too. When the heat, humidity and glaring sun have made it all but impossible to enjoy the outdoors, retreat inside, pull the curtain and allow the cool air to stay trapped in your house.

While our parents and grandsparents may not know how to work a computer (or know what one is), they know a lot more than we do about saving a few bucks here and there.

Green Ways to Clean Hardwood Floors

It’s always a good idea to have your hardwood floors professionally cleaned every year. And in between these cleanings, be sure to give it some TLC on your own as well.

Remember, dirt can scratch floors, make your pets sneeze, and even cause someone to skid and fall. Take care that the products you use won’t hurt anyone or anything.

Green Cleaning for Hardwood Floors!

You don’t have to buy expensive, strong-smelling products to keep that floor spotless and looking good as new. Green-friendly cleaning products abound, and some are already in your house.

  • HGTV suggests boiled water and teabags. Steep two teabags in a pot full of water for a couple of minutes and pour this into a bucket. When it’s cool enough to not burn you, dunk in a soft cloth and wring it out. Wash the floor with the damp cloth to get a beautiful shine courtesy of the tannic acid in the tea.
  • Care2, a site that promotes healthy, green lifestyles suggests adding ¼ cup of mild liquid dishwashing detergent (preferably chemical-free) to a bucket of warm water for damp mopping. A little bit of baking soda on a damp sponge can safely rub out scuffmarks.For floors finished with oil or wax, use a natural solvent-based cleaner. White spots left by spilled water can be gently buffed out with fine steel wool and a couple of drops of the solvent.
  • Gaiam Life, another healthy lifestyle and green site, suggests adding a half-cup of pure lemon juice into a bucket for damp mopping to remove mildew, odors, grease, and wax buildup. Olive oil added to damp-mop water will condition unfinished floors.

The Vinegar Debate in Green Cleaning

Vinegar has become the Green Cleaner of the Decade. Various sites endorse it for lime descaling in appliances, general housecleaning, steam cleaning microwave ovens, and stain removal on carpets, clothing, and shoes.

What about hardwood floors?

Green sites tend to agree vinegar is safe on wood but some professional cleaning sites warn against it, saying it’s too harsh on finishes and can void warranties. This may stem from a universal warning against letting water puddle on hardwood floors during cleaning. The two don’t mix well for long periods of time; any spills on a hardwood floor should be cleaned up immediately to avoid discoloration and warping.

Likewise, be sure to damp mop and not slosh. So adding a little vinegar to the mix won’t do harm to a floor in good shape. If there are objections to the vinegar smell, it dissipates quickly. Dust mopping is also recommended.

Options to Mopping

Mopping isn’t fun and many people look to steam cleaners, which clean with super-heated water and no chemicals, to do the job. But is this safe on hardwood floors?

The general answer is: no. There are too many variables: steam harms finishes, leaves streaks, warps untreated wood floors, and can deliver too much steam at once, which can let moisture seep in between the floorboards.

One deep-cleaning system, Bona, gets generally positive reviews but it is not Green Certified. The product also doesn’t name all ingredients, earning it two Fs from the Environmental Working Group.

Your best bet? Ask people to take off their shoes when they enter your home. Put nonslip rugs on high-traffic areas, and sweep and damp-mop regularly with your favorite green wood floor product.

Health Benefits of Broccoli

Regular intake of broccoli helps you reverse the damage caused by diabetes to your heart vessels. This is an interesting finding of a recent study performed by the research team at University of Warwick. Since long, broccoli has been believed to carry lots of nutrients, but this study highlights the role played by this vegetable in controlling the damage caused by diabetes. In fact, broccoli packs some of the most nutrients which are hard to find in other green vegetables.

Broccoli contains important nutrients such as vitamin A, vitamin C, folic acid, calcium, and fiber. Although, you can not equate the amount of calcium that you receive from a glass of milk with one serving of this vegetable, broccoli is still considered as an important source of calcium, especially for those, who seem to dislike dairy products. Calcium present in this vegetable helps you build strong bones and is also believed to play an important role in controlling your blood pressure. Many researchers agree that calcium helps in preventing colon cancer.

Broccoli is a rich source of fiber. While half of its fiber is insoluble, the other half is soluble in water. Remember, your body requires both types of fibers to meet its daily requirements. Broccoli certainly offers you more benefits than you can imagine. It contains various protective substances that help you keep numerous unwanted diseases at bay.

Various health organizations recommend eating cruciferous vegetables such as broccoli, which should be ate many times a week. This is because broccoli is known to reduce the risk of developing cancer. Just like other cruciferous vegetables, broccoli contains two natural phytochemicals – indoles and isothiocyanates. The regular intake of broccoli promotes the production of enzymes, which are believed to protect the blood vessels. Also, it helps in reducing the high levels of molecules, which are liable to cause cell damage in your body. Other than this, broccoli is also known to reduce the risk of developing heart ailments and strokes.

Priests Of Poetry

Poetry as therapy is reluctantly a new development in the expressive arts, however it is as old as the first chant sung around the tribal fires of the primitive people. Then it was used by some selected elders to bring healing to the sick ones. The word 'Therapy' came from the Greek 'therapy', meaning to cure through involvement in one of the express arts: dance, song, poetry or drama.

Poetry as a therapy uses the traditional techniques of poetry-rhythm, sound, metaphor etc but the focus is the person writing or performing the poem. When it is used for healing, expression and growth is used as a tool in the hands of the individual.

Of course every genre, civilization, forms have employed the use of the imagination, metaphor, rhythm and other literary devices to teach their stories, fable, drama, passing their information. Poetry in it condensed form, lyrical quality, and flitting thematic preoccupation is a typical evocative form of literature that can command surprising positive responses from people involved irrespective of ages, state and culture.

Poetry is very efficient in self purgation in this modern time when being conducted as a therapy in an interactive process. It releases catharsis, advances self awakening, gives new thoughts and hope to the user.

Poetry therapy goes different ways with the so called highly intellectual and selective course of the English literature class. The essence of it process begins in reaching a poem to the facilitated discussion of the readers-response to that poem. The poem in question may be the reader's piece or someone else's own. When such poem is been talked about thoughtfully by the patient in question to the therapist (who not so necessary), the after effect is always so interesting as one realizes that the user feels more lighter and indignant about his or her present troubling circumstance instead the attention is fixed on solving the poem which is simply related to that of the patients. The puzzle goes around to take care of the player. The same and even more efficient result is seen when it is a poem written by the patient.

This is not using a ruler and an advance dictionary to analyze the meter and ideology of the elite poet who authors the book. This is either an avenue to under-estimate or ignore the depth essence of the book as intended by the writer nor a total neglect of the cosmetic and historical meaning of a poem, it is instead a seeking to discover the reader's own intuitive understanding, connection with the story and application of the meaning to his or her present situation.

In present day poetry for healing, we become doctors to our sicknesses and irresolvable woes; it is a track to our own special contribution to the many recommended solutions we find in our world of lengthy prescriptions. Every tablets of drug, scripture, incantation or therapy must directly or indirectly depend on the will of a living being to be active. This gives us a major part to the certainty of our existence and fulfillment. The poems of our own stories, makes each and every one of us practices of our well-beings and possibilities.

© Uche Uwadinachi

Protect Your Personal Finances by Avoiding Any Unneeded Fees

Protecting your finances in these tough economical times is a task that leaves no room for good news. Even though you worked hard your entire life, your future is not nearly as safe as it should be and it ‘s up to you to make it safer. Being zealous will definitely help you protect your financial objectives and find ways to save some money at the same time.

Small unnecessary fees might not seem important at first glance, but they are, that ‘s why it is best to know everything about them. Try respecting some simple rules so you don ‘t end up having to pay for something that you should not.

If you write a check that bounces, you will have to pay the bank ‘s overdraft fee and also a fee to the company you wrote the check to. If you are late paying for the overdraft, you will end up having a late payment fee too. This might lead to trouble if the credit card company will up the interest rate. That is why is it necessary to keep your checking account in the black to avoid any overdraft fee.

Avoid using your debit cards when it requires a fee. For instance, other banks will charge you when trying to access your own money. That ‘s why it is always indicated to use your own bank when you want to use your debit card.

Also, never use your credit card for cash advances, as the credit company will most likely charge a higher interest rate for the cash advances than for other transactions.

Always try to stay informed about the fees you might need to pay. Keep in touch with your accountant and ask for additional information whenever you don ‘t understand something. Only this way you will be able to keep your finances safe.

One Pound Houses

The cheapest street in Britain. On Wednesday I watched a documentary on Liverpool’s housing scheme – the opportunity to purchase a dilapidated house for a pound and do it up. That sounds like a fabulous idea for those struggling to get on the housing-ladder, and several families had accepted the offer and were eagerly renovating their properties.

However a few problems came to light. Because the area the houses were in was a run down district, there was a lot of crime, vandalizing and even shootings, which was frightening for the new residence. There were only a few sales amid rows of empty houses.

The council had apparently had 2500 enquiries for the properties, why couldn’t they move faster at getting more families in thus creating a thriving community of like-minded people working hard at renovating their homes. A higher occupancy would probably lower vandalism.

Another problem the new purchasers had, was their lack of the skill-set required to repair rooves, flooring and completely renovating a shell. The work obviously had to be completed to a high standard and the new purchasers were working to a small budget and doing as much of the work as possible; also sometimes their work was being destroyed by vandalism.

Some may say why was the council selling off housing stock? They had previously been planned to redevelop the area but funding ran out – but there were benefits to the scheme:

Selling the houses for renovation would bring in council tax.

Homes would be provided.

The area would be tidied up and improved with new residents taking pride in their properties.

An improved district, once everyone had moved in, less crime etc.

It seems to me with a few tweaks the scheme could produce a win-win solution. By selling say 50 houses a month in due course the revenue from council tax could be:

50 houses X £100 CT = £5000 per month. Which isn’t being provided whilst houses are empty!

If council tax was halved for the first 6 months whilst the houses were renovated and tuition/support offered from a team of vetted builders, also doing work at a subsidised rate, this would encourage more people to purchase, and the uptake would be faster. (The revenue raised could help provide the services).

A thriving community would quickly develop, reduced crime in the area, some housing deficit satisfied and revenue form council tax for the future.

As this is only the first episode it will be interesting to see how the project develops, and how the council deal with the arising problems. The program returns next week.

Do You Contemplate Installing Stacked Stone Panels Outdoors?

The value of stacked stone panels is derived from the alluring patterns that bring appeal to home surfaces. It is real natural stone in a great variety. Forget the many faux panels being sold and opt for the authentic durable natural stuff. They are easy to maintain and all you need to do is high pressure spray twice a year. In addition, you could brush the panels with a soft bristle brush. Avoid strong cleansers like ammonia and bleach or acidic substances.

If you seal the stacked panels each year, it retains the lustrous effect. Don’t forget to brush to get rid of dirt before the sealing. Then, scrub with a natural stone cleaner and warm water. Rinse and allow for drying for two hours before sealing. Make sure it is the right sealer. Check out some of the outdoor wonders!

Golden White Stone

Enhance the home value with stacked stone surfaces. Do you fancy the Golden White natural quartzite split-face panel with several sparkling tones of reds and grays, creams and golds? Appropriate for both the modern and traditional décor, such an exterior wall would elevate the appeal.

Amber Falls Stone

Stucco and shingles may not be enough decoration on the home exterior in comparison to stacked stone. Amble Falls that originates in quartzite, also has mica that results in the shine in the sunlight. Gray, rust and copper combine for that unique flavor.

Gray Oak 3D Honed

With outdoor living features getting so popular, imagine a grand fireplace out there, draped in stacked stone. Gray Oak 3D Honed is created from natural marble. A modern look comes from the midtone grays and clean lines. Create a welcome ambience when combined with the natural wood effect on the furniture.

Golden Honey

Fireplace lovers would take Golden Honey to heart. Natural quartzite reveals grays, whites and golds for a fascinating environment. Imagine a serene fireplace next to the pool, adjacent to the outdoor kitchen! Get set for a party under the stars.

Durango Cream

If you find a stacked stone feature wall or backsplash inviting, the Durango Cream travertine effect would be immensely effective. A modern approach with travertine would be exciting indeed. With the contemporary fetish for the outdoors, create your own mini resort for happy getaways without the journeys and the expenses. Cook and entertain out there!

Add great aura with the stacked stone durable panels to the home surroundings. It will weather the elements outdoors and bring a rare beauty. Check out many more cute options.

Groom Your Puggle to Look Dazzling

Once you have gotten a puppy home, you would want to schedule for grooming your puggle and keep to clean. Grooming is not only important for your puggle's appearance but also for good health and well being. If you do not groom your puggle puppies chances are they may produce a foul odor and develop matter areas of fur and some skin allergies on the skin.

Combing and brushing: Grooming your puggle puppy is very much essential. Cleaning the fur is the key to keeping your puppy look great and clean. This would involve trimming of the fur and brushing of fur. If your puppy has long hair then you might consider combing and brushing his hair everyday. You would also require trimming the areas that are matted or have a tension of getting matted need to be trimmed regularly. With the woolly and curly hair breeds, you would need to comb everyday in order to avoid tangling of hair. The dogs with short hair that have close tight fur or hair would require fewer times of brushing and combing. Combing once in a fortnight would do for the short haired dogs.

Nail check: You would require making a regular check of the puggle's paws. This would also include trimming nails of your puggle. You would need to make a check for debris and dirt that is lodged between the toes. If your do indulge a lot of time outdoors then checking for dirt and debris is must. You would require trimming your puggle's nails regularly. This would help keeping dirt and debris from accumulating. This would also prevent the puppy from the movement and prevention from the ingrown nails that can grow inside the paw pads. This condition could be very much painful. It would cost you handsomely at the vet's clinic in order to get it removed and then closing it up. Therefore, it is necessary to make a regular check, every two weeks. Trimming your puggle's nails would save your furniture too. If your house hair wood flooring then you would want to make sure that your puggle's nails are trimmed in order to avoid any damage from occurring.

Each check and dental care: Ear care is another important thing that you might consider. Pale pink color ears enhance their appearance. If you feel your dog is smelling foul or fading pale pink color, then make a trip to a vet. Cleaning the puggle's ears regularly would be a great idea. It is easy to clean too. Dental care of puggle is another important thing that you might want to consider. Cleaning puggle's teeth should be started at an early stage itself. Decay of teeth and mouth could lead to a serious kidney or a liver problem. Brush your puggle's teeth regularly and visit a vet once in a year for a thorough cleaning.

Cleaning eyes and bathing: Clean and check your puggle's eyes regularly. If you happen to see any sign of cloudiness or drain, make a trip to the vet. Bathing would allow getting rid of all smelly odors. Practice bathing your puggle once a week. There are some specially formulated soaps and shampoos that could have been used to get rid of dirt and odor. Make sure to groom your puggle for it to remain in a healthy being.

Hydroponics Made Easy!

So you’re interested in starting a hydroponics garden, but you need to know how are hydroponics made easy? After all, home gardening is supposed to be a fun activity, not a chore, and if this method of growing is going to be too complicated, you won’t be interested in doing it. Luckily, most hydroponics gardening systems are not too difficult to set up. Sure, they require a little more initial work than a traditional garden does, but once started, they’re much easier to maintain. Think of it this way: one of the great benefits of hydroponics is that only the plants you introduce to the system will grow in it. That means no weeding!

All by itself, that’s enough reason for a lot of us to want to grow hydroponically.

So let’s look at how hydroponics can be done without a lot of fuss or expense. The fastest way to get hydroponics made easy, of course, is to purchase pre-fabricated, ready-to-go growing systems that can be used almost right out of the box. This is the most expensive solution, but it eliminates most of the setup work and effort required to get started with hydroponics.

The less expensive, but more hands-on and labor-intensive way to set up a hydroponics garden is to build one yourself. For many, this is not much of a stumbling block and the many “how to” and “DIY” books on the subject can make it much easier. For the low budget hydroponics grower, this is the method of choice.

Whichever method you choose, you’re hydroponics system will be made up of four basic components: containers or trays for solution and plants, a circulation system for the nutrient solution, the nutrient solution itself (plus water), and a means of introducing or replicating sunlight. A basic hydroponics system provides the three things plants need to grow and thrive: nutrients, sunlight, and water.

A typical home hydroponics garden will consist of the above four elements set up in a place suitable for the system to operate and convenient to the gardener. Basements, closets, rooftop greenhouses, garages, and sheds are all popular choices. Most hydroponics systems will need running water and electricity conveniently close at hand and space for the gardener to work.

Most home hydroponics gardens are set up in basically this same way. To have hydroponics made easy for the gardener and enthusiast, the system will be put together and then run in generally the same setup. The following is an example of a common home hydroponics garden from setup to operation.

A Common Home Hydroponics Garden Example

For this example, the setup will involve the following parts: large “double window box” styled trays, a simple electric pump system to circulate, an infrared grow light, pre-mixed solution, and a rock wool medium.

The trays are set into place on a table or frame to hold them up off the floor for easier access to the gardener. The drain hole has a hose fitted to it to return the drained solution to a five gallon mixing bucket. Out of this bucket comes another hose, attached to the electric pump, to feed new solution to the other end of the beds, the solution moving through the beds themselves by gravity.

The bottom halves of the beds are filled with rock wool media to which the plants “attach” or root when planted in the beds. The solution is able to move freely through the medium and thus the roots of the plants, providing nutrients and draining off wastes.

The pre-mix is diluted in water into the five gallon bucket, leaving space to allow for additional mix and water to be added later. Periodically, the bucket will be dumped and a new solution started from scratch in order to remove the plant wastes and over-diluted solution and replace it with a fresh batch, keeping the plants healthier.

The light is plugged in and positioned over the plants so that it hits all of them. A small timer is used to turn the light on and off automatically in 18/6 hour intervals (18 hours on, 6 hours off).

Once this system is up and running, the only maintenance required is to check the plants regularly, periodically drain and replenish the nutrient solution, and to harvest the proceeds.

This typical setup is a fairly advanced, but not uncommon home “hydroponics made easy” garden.

15-Minute Solution – Quickness Training For Athletes

To perform at the highest level, athletes need to have ‘the whole package’ – stability, strength, stamina and speed, but an athlete will never succeed in a multi-directional sport without speed. When I talk about speed in this case, I am talking primarily about first step quickness. I do not care about your 40 yard dash at all unless you are headed to the NFL combine. Success in multidirectional sport typically occurs in a 2-5 square meters. It is the athlete’s ability to get a step ahead of their opponent that leads to the breakaway or the pass completion.

Before giving you my 15-minute solution for developing quickness, I want you to understand that there is a huge difference between speed training and conditioning. When speed is your primary goal, then you must be executing each repetition with maximum velocity. Once fatigue enters the picture, you are no longer training speed, now you are working on conditioning. Many coaches get this wrong, thinking that they are training speed by having their athletes run suicide drills. Then they wonder why the players are no quicker in a game situation.

 

Acceleration Wall Drill

  • Maintain a 45 degree angle to the wall.
  • Keep your toes pulled up the entire time.
  • Drive you knee up until your thigh is parallel to your body, there should not be any movement at the torso (i.e. do not round your back).
  • Use your glutes as you drive that foot back down to the floor behind you – make sure to maintain your body lean -your foot should be landing behind your hips.
  • If you feet are making lots of noise as they hit the floor, then you are likely standing too upright.
  • Begin with a pause after each rep. Then once you have mastered the technique you can speed up the tempo.
  • Do 4 sets of 8-10 reps with each leg resting 30 seconds between sets.

Falling Starts

You need some space for this one – approximately 10m will be fine but make sure it is clear of debris.

  • Stand with your feet side by side and slowly tip forward. When you approach the point where you feel like you would fall on your face if you did not take a step, you will use the technique described above to take 5-6 quick powerful acceleration steps.
  • Do 5-8 starts, resting 30 seconds between each start.

Box Drill Ins & Outs

Tape or draw out a box shape on the basement floor or in the driveway. The box should measure approximately 18″x18″.

  • Stand straddling the box shape – in other words, both feet are outside of the box on opposite sides.
  • Now you will step into the box with your right foot, then into the box with your left foot (now both feet are inside the box). In a steady, quick pattern you will then step out of the box leading again with your right foot. 
  • Maintain you good athletic position with your knees slightly bent and your chest up – do not stare down at the box. 
  • You will repeat for the required amount of time alternating between leading with the right foot and leading with the left foot.
  • Do four sets of 5 seconds with 30 seconds rest between each set

Box Drill Clock Hops

  • For this drill I want you to think quick and light.
  • Begin by standing with both feet inside the box you used for the previous drill. Now hop out of the box forward with both feet, then hop backward into the box with both feet, now hop out to the right, then back in, out to the back of the box, then back in and finally out to the left and then back in. You have completed one cycle clockwise. 
  • You should keep your upper body fairly steady – try not to flail your arms as you go through this drill. 
  • Complete the suggested number of repetitions going both clockwise and counter clockwise.
  • Do three sets of 5 seconds in each direction with 30 seconds of rest between sets.

It can easily be argued that these movements are not sport specific. Correct. It may also be argued that practicing scales on the piano is not classical music.  However both activities can help beginners develop basic motor skills and serve as a supplemental drill for advanced performers.

Spring and Fall Cleaning the Garage

It is tough when you have to pitch in and do the spring / fall cleaning around the house and you have the garage to do by yourself. Chances are despite the majority of disarray in this area of ​​the home is pretty well your doing.

Looking at the fall first, one has to look at what has happened during the summer months. Your job is not going to be near as big if you have a storage shed. Without of course you have allowed this space to get somewhat cluttered as well. So whats been shoved in the garage over the summer? Well to begin with there is all the winter equipment that is probably shoved to the back by now to make room for the summer items.

In the forefront as soon as you open the garage doors no doubt you are going to find items such as the kids bikes, some outdoor toys, probably the spring garden items, and a mixture of other things. One thing you are not likely to find is space to park the vehicle. This is not so bad for the summer months. Come the first snowfall you are going to be glad your car was tucked away in your nice clean organized garage.

So where do you start? Remember now this is the fall cleaning that is being adopted here. To begin with do yourself a favor and pick a nice warm sunny day to do this and take everything out of the garage and put it on the lawn. Do not try to take shortcuts. If you do, you are going to end up moving the same items around at least a half a dozen times.

Now that everything is out do a quick inventory of what has to go back in and allot the space for it. Remember its time to put the summer items to the back of the garage and move the winter items up to the front. Be sure that you leave ample space for the car. This means making sure that you are going to be able to get the snow blowers and shovels out easily without damaging your vehicle. That goes for the kid's toboggans and snow gliders as well.

Now is the time if you need to install some extra shelving that you do it. It is perfect with everything out of the way you can install your shelves easily and they are going to help you get super organized.

Remember to move the winter equipment such as the snowbrushes, small shovels, and deicer and battery cables up to the front where you are going to have easy access to them.

Now let us look at the Spring-cleaning. So whets going to happen here? Exactly the same thing you did for the fall only you are going to reverse the position of the items.

Once you have done this for a year or two it is going to become routine. You are going to find that you have a lot less mess to clean up each time you go to do your garage cleaning. The big bonus is you are going to find everything you need when you need it.

The 5 Keys To Finally Lose Fat Fast!

Losing fat in my opinion is not all that difficult. You need to possess 5 Strategies and apply all 5.

They are:

1. A Compelling Reason To Change

2. Proper Nutrition

3.Progressive Resistance Training

4. Moderate Aerobic Exercise

5.Consistency

5 Strategies For Fat Loss

1. A Reason To Change:

To make a successful body transformation, you must first and most importantly have a desire to change. And that desire must be fueled with a reason to change. This reason cannot be any old reason. It has to be the most Compelling Reason you ever had in your entire life.

Without this reason you won’t be able to sustain your motivation to do the other four parts necessary to achieve a successful transformation. So what is your Compelling Reason to change? For some it is death of a loved one or wanting to live healthier so you can spend more time with loved ones.

For others it could be they are sick and tired of being sick and tired. Your doctor may be telling you to lose weight or go on blood pressure medication, or, worst yet, die-your choice. For each one of us it is different. I do know this; you must have a Compelling Reason to change period.

2. Proper Nutrition:

This is where 99% of us screw up. The worst part is there is so much misinformation and hype out there, nobody really knows what proper nutrition or eating right really is. Most people think to lose weight they must stop eating altogether.

Thinking this way is totally wrong, since this will slow down our metabolisms. Precisely what we don’t want. Another way people think they’re eating right is having fruit & coffee for breakfast, a salad for lunch, and a bowl of pasta for dinner.

Nope, that’s not the answer either. So the question is what is proper nutrition? OK in a nutshell, my idea of proper nutrition is 4 to 5 portion controlled balanced meals about every 3 hours throughout the day.

3. Progressive Resistance Training :

SPECIAL NOTE FOR WOMEN Please, DO NOT be afraid of weight training. You WILL NOT turn into the Hulk I promise. The objective or goal is to build lean muscle on our bodies. For women out there I love to call it lean SEXY muscle, because when you replace the fat on your bodies with lean sexy muscle look out!

You will turn your body into a lean & toned sexy fat burning machine! So weight training will be the same for you as it is for the men. Ok, enough said on that. I have to include the guys now. Building lean muscle will boost metabolism and that is what we want to achieve.

In fact, you’ll even start burning more calories even while you rest. I’ll let you in on a little known secret: you need lean muscle because that is where fat is burned! The more lean muscle you have the more fat you burn. That’s what we’re trying to accomplish with weight training.

In order to build lean muscle we must get stronger every workout. Let me repeat that. In order to build lean muscle (lean sexy muscle for women) we must get stronger every workout. That’s what we call progressive striving to get just a little stronger each time.

4. Moderate Aerobic Exercise:

Moderate does not mean one hour and forty-five minutes, nor does it mean two hours. Moderate means anywhere between 18 to 25 minutes 3 times per week. That’s it! OK you can get up off the floor now. I know, I know, you’re probably saying this guy Bill has lost it! 18 to 25 minutes?!?!

Ok, OK wait a minute. Let me ask you a question. For those of you who are presently doing aerobic exercise for one hour or longer, are you happy with your results? If you said No try 18 to 25 minutes 3 times per week you’ll be amazed!

Aerobic exercise can be as simple as walking at a brisk pace, jumping rope, stationary bicycle, treadmill, stair stepper, etc. The bottom line is you have to find an aerobic exercise you enjoy, or you will end up not doing it on a consistent basis.

5. CONSISTENCY!!!:

You must be consistent in following the strategies for:

* Proper Nutrition

* Progressive Resistance Training

* Moderate Aerobic Exercise

Consistency will result in successful Body Transformation!

If you take the time and put forth the effort, but don’t do it consistently, then your results will be minimal. You can’t expect to do all three strategies for one week then stop for a week then start for two more weeks then stop for another week.

I can’t stress this enough, you must be consistent on all the action strategies: Proper Nutrition, Progressive Resistance Training and Moderate Aerobic Exercise. Consistency is the glue that holds everything together.

Typical Workout

A Typical weeks workout (less than two total hours per week!)

Pick any 5 days.

Since I have a wife and Kids I like to have my weekends free.

So I break it down like this:

Monday: 18 minutes stationary bicycle

Tuesday: weight resistance training 15 minutes

Wednesday: 18 minutes stationary bicycle

Thursday: 18 minutes stair stepper

Friday: weight resistance training 15 minutes

Something like this is all you need to transform your body, of course you have to add in there Proper Nutrition!!!

I hope this helps a lot of you out there searching for answers.

For those that are interested you can go to my transformations page to see what is possible:

http://www.bare-minimum-training.com/billbelfertstransformations.html

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Copyright ©2002-2005. Bill Belfert, Member Bare Minimum Training LLC. All rights reserved. No liability is assumed by Bare Minimum Training LLC., Nor the author for any information contained herein. This text does not provide medical advice. Specific medical advice should be obtained from a doctor. Bare Minimum Training LLC. advises all to consult a physician before you begin any new nutrition, exercise, or dietary supplement program.

Identity and Creating

Engaging in a creative venture often brings up questions and uncertainties related to personal identity: Am I qualified? Do I have enough experience, strength, talent, skill? Will the work be good enough? Will I be good enough?

Creative expression is based on both our inner selves and our abilities, so maybe it is inevitable we question both our self concept and talents.

But our insecurities and doubts may not be just a matter of objective competence. For example, two actors noted for being able to create distinctive and powerful characters have made revealing comments about their own identities. The late Peter Sellers once said, “If you ask me to play myself, I will not know what to do. I do not know who or what I am.” And Jennifer Jason Leigh has claimed, “As a person, I don’t really register that much. Director Robert Altman says that as a person I disappear in a way.”

Feelings about identity can drive creative projects. Painter Laura Molina says on her website, “I feel the need to assert my identity in the most militant way possible… As an educated, native-born, English-speaking, fifth generation Mexican-American and a feminist, there is almost no reflection of me in the movies or television, which is almost as bad as being stereotyped.”

Stifling a need to create, on the other hand, can leave “a small hole in the fabric of our self-esteem” as Gloria Steinem puts it. Not creating can also be a path to depression, according to psychologist Eric Maisel among others.

Saying we “can’t” write, paint, perform on stage, develop a new medical test or create in some other way is in effect not giving ourselves “permission.”

The sense of inability may be based on some outside standard of what a “real” creative person is, or relates to being a “failure” at doing something creative. Getting beyond or “bypassing” intellectual restrictions on our creativity can be a matter of shifting one’s attitudes and unrealistic standards.

This idea of an outside authority for what we must be in order to create can be potently self-limiting. Almost any craft or artform has some collection of criteria for what makes it work, what makes it good. But creative people in any field often bend or even break those rules.

The common feeling of being a fraud, inadequate, an impostor, is something many of us have experienced to some degree in trying to realize our creative talents.

Director Jane Campion, esteemed for “The Piano” and other films, has admitted, “I never have had the confidence to approach filmmaking straight on. I just thought it was something done by geniuses, and I was very clear that I wasn’t one of those.”

It may be especially challenging for someone who has gained esteem, acknowledgment and identity in a field not considered “creative” when they want to pursue a more recognizably creative project.

But it isn’t just a matter of self-concept; there are social pressures that can make defining our identity difficult. Creativity coach Dave Storer, one of the contributors to the book “Inspiring Creativity” (edited by Rick Benzel), writes that “most people in our culture will not let you easily claim a creator’s identity. They will push against you and demand ‘proof’ of your creative talent.”

He counsels to keep working at your chosen project anyway, and over time you will become comfortable with your identity, because it “comes from the doing of it.”

Maybe our sense of identity is always fluid, and always unfinished. Many artists have commented that creating is not only a way to express their unique self to others, but is also a means to more fully understand and define who they are to themselves.

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Light Your Front Door in Style

They say you never get a second chance to make a good first impression. When it comes to your home making a good first impression, the place to start is your front door. Your front door is where visitors first get up close to your property, so it can make all the difference between them being quietly impressed, or distinctly underwhelmed.

There are several relatively painless ways to give your front door a facelift. You can give it a lick of new paint. You can install a smarter letterbox, door knocker or door bell. And, if you have an outside light by your front door – and a lot of us do – you can treat it to a more handsome fitting.

When shopping for a new light to lift your front door from bland anonymity to local celebrity, the first thing to consider is the style of your property. If you live in a contemporary building, is a faux-Georgian lantern really the way to go? If you live in a period house, will some cheap and cheerful repro light from the DIY sheds really do it justice?

One possible solution for all types of property is to use wall-mounted spotlights placed on one or both sides of your doorway, or even above it. As you would expect, the clean, contemporary style of spotlights sits very comfortably with contemporary architecture, especially when they are in a hard-edged material like stainless steel, or a suitable powdercoat paint colour.

However, the form-is-function design aesthetic of spotlights can also be an unobtrusive and minimal complement to period properties, particularly if you choose a fitting in solid copper which, as well as being a pleasingly traditional material, quickly dulls down to blend with its surrounding materials, especially brick and timber.

The second issue to bear in mind when shopping for front door lighting is the kind of light effect it creates. Traditional lighting typically produces a pool of ambient light. There’s nothing wrong with that, but it is rather indiscriminate – do you really want to light those dustbins, or that oil stain on your drive? And if you’re considering security lighting, do you really want to feel like you’ve walked into a high security militarised zone every time you arrive home at night (not to mention the light pollution it creates which could lead to tensions with your neighbours)?

Spotlights, by contrast, shine a beam of light that you can point exactly where you want it. For example, installing a downlighter over your front door will create a tent of light around the doorway, while also producing enough reflected light to gently light the approach to the door. Alternatively, if you have planters either side of your front door, a spotlight for each will transform them into an eye-catching night-time highlight that frames your doorway in light. There are even wall-mounted spotlights that shine a beam from the top and bottom of the fitting for a dramatic and different light effect.

Most of the best spotlights on the market use dichroic halogen lamps which require a 12-volt electricity supply – and that means they need a transformer. However, if that’s beginning to sound too technical for your tastes, or you’re wondering where you’re meant to locate the transformer, there’s no need to worry. Many 12-volt halogen exterior spotlights incorporate an integral transformer, so they connect directly to the mains electricity supply without fuss. Alternatively, there are outdoor spotlights that use the 240 volt GU10 dichroic halogen lamp which, again, connects directly to the mains power. Or if you like the idea of being at the cutting edge of lighting technology, there are now compact wall mounted outdoor spotlights that use the new 240-volt MR16 metal halide lamp which combines very high light output with exceptional energy efficiency.

Whichever lighting technology you choose, your spotlights will look good during the day and your front door will look like a star at night.