2013: What to do?

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It’s always so cliché to talk about the New Year but what else is there to talk about? A great many things I suppose, however, this topic is probably the most pressing as we all like talking and thinking about what WE are going to do in the New Year!

How we are going to change the world, do more charity, lose weight, live healthier, be kinder, take more risks…the resolutions and “to do” lists are endless…. 2011-year-resolution-400x400

The more pressing question is: What ARE you REALLY going to do?

That eternal question

My question stands: What are you really going to do and achieve during the New Year?

And…It’s something that I think we start off seriously wanting to do but then along the way it dwindles! The desire to do those things leave us and we get caught up with so many others things because life is not predictable after all. However, it’s how we deal with those unpredictable moments that will propel us and motivate us to keep forging on and still be PASSIONATE about the things we set out to do!

So, I have decided to be more determined than ever to accomplish the goals I have set!

I have decided to write them on paper, stick it up in my room where I can see them every day. And not only have these goals but also writing down a timeline.

My Wish list:

These are the things that I would like to implement this year:

  • Being more considerate of others
  • Starting my home gym
  • Eating healthier
  • Show more interest in my family
  • Give more of myself to my friends and others
  • Love more and hate less

For now, these 6 things are things that I really need to concentrate on because right now they are important to me! As the year goes on and I have scraped these from my goals list I will add more which I wish to achieve.

Sink or Swim

New-Years-Resolutions-e1356567019488This blog has really been such a cool space for me this past month to help and motivate me. My hope is that any of you out there will be able to share your ideas and journey with me and others…

So, tell me some of your goals and how you plan to achieve them. You may have a different view on how to do things and it may be helpful to me as well as others.

This is my last post for 2012…HAVE A BLAST AND HAPPY NEW!

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Festive Season and FEASTING! Or over-eating?

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Now that Christmas is over and our bellies have had time to relax and deflate…it’s time to look on to the impending future and NEW YEARS!

This entire period of festivities is a time of laughing, fun, time with family and lots of EATING!

IMG_1583DON’T PIG OUT!

Now…this time of the year doesn’t have to be the time for you to over eat or gain weight or be unhealthy! Although, I must admit I do sometimes just want to pig out BUT I have to remind myself that I have don’t have to hoover everything in sight! I can still be eat and live healthily this festive season.

Instead…have FUN with FOOD

Yes, let’s get to the GOOD stuff! There will no doubt be many parties, endless braai’s (i.e BBQ’s) and copious amounts of alcohol! Going to a BBQ doesn’t have to be stressful in terms of what you can eat! Here are some healthy and fun things to eat and put on the coals/fire:

  • Steak
  • Skinless Chicken Breast
  • Fish

My personal favourite though has to be the SKEWER! Chicken breast, vegetables (green, red, yellow peppers), red onion, mushrooms…actually WHATEVER you like! I included some dried peach just for fun! It’s really filling and just CHEWY GOODNESS!  tossed-green-salad1

Add a LOVELY green salad and you are good to go!

Vegging OUT!

Now, I realise that not everyone eats meat…so, I suggest when going to the BBQ, take along your tofu IMG_1588burgers, and remove the chicken breast from the skewer! I made one without meat as you can see in this image to the left…

Don’t be SKEERRRRDDD!

DON’T be afraid to go to a BBQ – EVER! You can have just as much fun as the others and still be healthy!

If you guys out there have any other cool healthy foods and recipes for BBQ snacks…please comment and let me know!

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Are Anti-Bacterial Soaps Killing Your Skin?

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Palmolive_SoapI was watching a TV ad about anti-bacterial soap the other day and I suggested to a friend, who was with me at the time, that I should get that particular brand of soap. To my dismay my friend, who has a Master’s Degree in Medical BioScience, told me that it’s simply NO GOOD! “Why?” I asked, “How can this be?”

Bacteria is GREAT

I have been using anti-bacterial soap for quite some time now and was extremely surprised to find out that it’s not as good as these commercials make it sound. In terms that I understood she explained to me that one needs bacteria in the skin to kill/fight off sweat and other things which could cause other skin irritations. It also weakens the natural bacteria our very own produces.

Check out a more detailed but simple explanation here

Soap Suds That Work

My friend then informed me that I may as well use just a regular soap as the “anti-bacterial” ones are NO USE and cost more money that it’s worth.

Keep your skin healthy, hold on to the bacteria (which is necessary) and use a REGULAR soap!

A Cool Beef Salad Recipe For Summer…or Winter!

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I was wondering about what to eat the other day and I was looking to find something interesting. I guess my most interesting ideas come from nowhere, when it’s just me and the kitchen! Like when I fried almonds in the pan with onions and peppers…

So, I came up with this little treat for myself! I must admit that some elements are borrowed too…borrowed or lent? I never know…

Here is it:

Beef Salad

  • 30ml oil (I suggest olive oil/extra virgin olive oil)
  • 500g rump steak (you really substitute here…if vegetarian, tofu is great)
  • 30ml soy sauce
  • 30ml sesame oil
  • Juice of 1 lime
  • 6 spring onions, very thinly sliced
  • 250ml bean sprouts
  • 500ml shredded red cabbage (regular will do as well)
  • 1 red apple very thinly sliced
  • 30ml sesame seeds
  • Mint leaves (fresh)

Instructions:

Heat the oil over high heat and seer the rump steak on both sides. Then, cut the steak into strips.

Combine the sesame oil, soy sauce and lime juice and set it aside.

Mix together the spring onions, bean sprouts, cabbage and apple.

Place the beef strips on top of the mixed vegetables and apple. Drizzle with the sesame oil mixture,  sprinkle with sesame seeds and put some mint leaves on the very top!

You can serve this with any or no bread…it is good with rye though!

thai-beef-salad

Busy Life? Exercise At Home!

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Do you feel like your life is too busy? Need 26 hours to complete your day? When this happens, do you even have time to exercise? I’m sure you can’t even think straight let alone fine time to exercise or get the correct vitaminsBusy Life

Lazy Bones

I don’t live a particularly busy life, although some days are busier than others. But, I find that sometimes I am lazy and find myself doing other things to fill my time (watching TV, PS3, going to visit a friend just to avoid a work-out). If you feel like this, I fully understand and to a certain extent it’s okay – until you reach a point as I have – where exercise and moving my body has become imperative!!

Guys Vs Dolls

The eternal question: Is yoga meant for men? Yes…of course it is! It’s meant for everyone! Guys – THIS IS WHAT YOGA WILL DO FOR YOU: It will improve your SEX LIFE! Ladies…you all know why yoga is good for you and the endless benefits you will get by practicing it!

Teaching A Downward Facing Dog New Tricks

I have found that in the morning, when I wake up, I am feeling really tired and lethargic. It’s been a bit better this past week because I have made a change in the way I am eating…AND I feel so much better, PLUS I have not measured it but my jeans are fitting a little less snug too!

To add to my feeling of being less tired, I am starting to do some simple stretches in my room, AT HOME! These are some easy yoga positions that will get your blood flowing, help your muscles stretch get you ready to start your day!

Here Are 3 Poses You Can Start Out With

Forward Bend BWForward Fold

Stretches hamstrings, calves, and hips; strengthens legs and knees

Stand with feet hip-width apart, gently hinge forward at the hips and lower the torso toward the floor. Bend your knees generously to take any pressure out of the low back and hamstrings. Grasp opposite elbows with opposite hands. Breathe deeply and let gravity take the body toward the earth. Relax your head, neck, shoulders and torso. Slowly sway your torso or gently shake your head. Hold for one minute and roll back up to standing.

Why it’s good for you: This is a great move to use as part of a warm-up for any workout.

We often have a hard time knowing when we are holding excess tension in our head, neck and shoulders, and that buildup of tension can create headaches, insomnia, poor circulation and decreased lung capacity. If you practice slow, steady breathing along with this pose, it can lower your blood pressure over

Downward Dog-resized-600Downward-Facing Dog

Stretches feet, shoulders, hamstrings, and calves; strengthens arms, legs, and core

Start on your hands and knees with your feet and knees hip-width apart. Position your hands about shoulder-width apart, and spread your fingers wide. Pressing firmly through your hands, lift your knees off the floor and straighten your legs. (If you have tight hamstrings, a gentle bend in the knees is fine). Walk your hands forward a few inches, and walk your feet back a few inches to lengthen the pose. Squeeze your thighs as you press them toward the back wall. Press your heels back and down toward the floor (though they might not reach the floor). Relax your head and neck and let your shoulder blades slide down your back toward your feet. Set your gaze between your feet. Suck your stomach in and engage your core muscles. Breathe deeply. Hold for three minutes, rest, and repeat one more time.

Why it’s good for you: We often experience back pain due to chronic tightness in the hamstrings and hips. It’s also common for us to have very tight shoulders. Down Dog releases those areas, while building upper body strength. If you can do only one pose a day, start with Downward Dog.

Chair PoseChair

Stretches shoulders and chest; strengthens thighs, calves, spine, and ankles

Stand up tall with your big toes touching. Inhale and raise your arms straight up to the ceiling alongside your head and neck with palms facing each other. Drop your shoulders down your back as you lengthen up through the neck. As you exhale, bend your knees, sit down and back as if you were sitting in a chair (like doing a squat with your feet together). Do not let your knees extend past your toes. With each inhale lengthen the spine. With each exhale sit a little deeper in the chair. Eventually your thighs will be parallel to the floor. Drop your tailbone down toward the floor to take any stress out of your lower back. Keep your core muscles engaged and keep your knees and thighs pressed tightly together. Hold for 30 seconds.

Why it’s good for you: No gym necessary! Chair pose torches abdominal fat while strengthening the thighs and legs.

More reasons why Yoga is good right here.

The END – Not!!!!!

I end off these stretches by doing 5 push-ups! I know they seem a small amount but I am just starting…so I think doing 5 of them, with good and proper form is good enough! You don’t want to take on TOO much TOO soon and burn out and become despondent about exercise.

So…here’s to getting the start started full of energy and zest!

What’s Your Breakfast Like

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I had such a good breakfast that I had to share it with you and also ask “What do you like to have for breakfast?”

I always read that breakfast is the most important meal of the day, so I am making sure that I get mine!

My Breakfast

Egg white omelette: consisting to 2 egg whites, green and red peppers, chopped onions, cheese and ham. If you’re a vegan or vegetarian you can simply exclude the ham and add something else that tickles your taste buds. The onions and peppers are great for flavour so I didn’t have to add any salt.

A small avocado and one rice cake with “no added sugar” peanut butter completed my meal! IMG_1562

The End

It was great, I felt full and ready to take on the day! I also had my snack, which was GREAT…Some yummy nuts!

What does your breakfast consist of…let me know so that I can try it.

PS.  It’s LUNCH TIME now and I get to eat again, which I LOVE!

What is GOOD Health?

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jennifer-lopez-body-300x225I have often wondered and thought about the question of good health. What does it mean to be healthy? Do I have to eat vegetables all day long? Exercise 7 days a week…and more importantly, do we have to have a J.Lo body or abs like Brad Pitt to be considered healthy? I say BULLSHIT!!!!!

So here’s the skinny!!

I need to just say this first. I, personally think that Jennifer Lopez looks amazing, Brad Pitt is in great shape and well done to them. However, I think what we need to understand is a) They have to look that way for their jobs and b) they also struggle, just like we do with staying or eating healthy. It’s a vicious circle because just as much as we want to see healthy and good looking people on TV and in magazines, we blame the media for our distorted image of beauty and health! So…GET OVER IT!  eye-candy-brad-pitt-16

Get SELF-HEALTHY

Don’t look to a magazine or public figure to determine your worth or health! Be aware that they can be someone you look up to or get inspiration from but also realise that they have worked just as hard to get there and SO DO YOU! Be conscious of the fact that you can start living a healthy life if YOU put your mind to it! Get yourself motivated, get yourself in the right frame of mind, get SELF-HEALTHY!

The Health Ultimatum

  1. Get your mind right
  2. Start believing in yourself
  3. Write down the things that will help you live healthier
  4. Ask others for help
  5. Most importantly get OFF YOUR ASS and DO IT!

What Good Health Is To Me

I think that good health is not necessarily being skinny or buff like the guys on Jersey Shore. terry-richardson-jersey-shore-01 It’s all about balance. Eating the correct foods, have an eating plan that caters to your body’s needs and wants. EAT  pizza if you want to, just not the entire thing, have one or two slices.  pepperoni-pizza-sl-1599569-lEverything in moderation. You don’t have to exercise 7 days a week. You will tire your body and brain! Having a tired and over-worked brain is not conducive to good health either. Do things that you enjoy besides thinking about whether you look thin or not. Go ice skating, walk along the beach, take a dance class!  Being healthy doesn’t have to include having a 6-pack! Having a good balance and managing to make sure you eat correctly, get in some exercise, rest well and make sure your mind is working and active – you are well on your way to GOOD HEALTH!

What do think good health is or should be? Let me know….

Time To Kick The Butt In The Butt!!!

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I have been a smoker for quite some time now, almost 12 years to be exact. I am finding that as I get older I am starting to smoke more and this is becoming bothersome. Well, I guess I should be worried in general…because smoking is harmful and addictive

In the quest to live a healthier life, I have decided to stop smoking! Not this instant but I am attempting it after my last pack is finished. I know you are probably rolling your eyes thinking “Just throw the damn pack away now”. And maybe I should but to be quite honest, I actually enjoy smoking and it’s going to be very hard to let go.

I think in order for me to be successful in my attempt to kick the habit I have to acknowledge the things I love about smoking:

  1. It’s fun to smoke while I’m driving, window down, one hand on the wheel and the other holding a cigarette.
  2. After a great Sunday lunch, just sitting down and having a smoke is simply relaxing.
  3. A cigarette with a glass of wine or whiskey is divine.
  4. And the ultimate indulgence is waking up, making a good cup of coffee and having that first smoke of the day.

What I will also miss is the social aspect of smoking. Let’s face it; smoking can at times be a social thing and dare I say it….COOL!.

If there are people in your work place who smoke, I’m sure they will be more than willing to have you join the “gang”. This is where you will hear all the office gossip, get cooking advice, hear all sorts of funny stories and anecdotes. More often than not you will end up becoming friends.

I have to let all of these things go and make a mental commitment to STOP!

To others this may sound weird but I am sure you have other things or vices that you indulge in? I’m not even going to go into detail about the side-effects of smoking because we know what they are.

Suprise Surprise

I was visiting a friend the other day and he informed me that he quit smoking, which was really surprising because he is a heavy smoker…well…was.  One of my close friends has also decided to quit and my first thought was “What’s going on with the world?” But then I realised that world would probably be a small bit better if there were less smokers around.

Help!!!!

So now I am at the precipice of giving it all up and I’m wondering “How?”

Someone mentioned hypnosis! I am wondering if I am that far gone and need to go this route?

Cold turkey? Or just concentrate on smoking a little less every day? Maybe start by getting away from that morning fag with coffee?

Have any of you out there quit smoking or attempted it? Please share your story and perhaps your methods with those of us who are about to undertake this journey. Its bit like giving up sugar isn’t it – you want to stop because you know it’s good for you but you also don’t want to stop because it’s so GOOD!

Let’s Get The Healthy Started

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This is the official first post on the “Let’s Live Healthily” blog and it’s all very EXCITING! Its taken a while to set up and get things right for smooth operation but I know that it may yet take some time to get things the way I really want them…

This will be an open space/forum for everyone to talk about health, living healthy lives and what we can do to be happy and healthy – whatever your age!

I have started my own personal journey, in the quest to be healthy, and in THIS way I would like to share my thoughts and journey with you in the hopes that it will help and inspire…

So, to read more about being healthy and happy you are more than welcome to follow me and also SHARE your ideas and thoughts!

In the meantime, if you have any suggestions on how to make things better or look nicer, please let me know.