We had a lovely night out with jo and kriszta. We celebrate jo first size 16 (skinny jeans) ;)))
We had a glass of red wine and a fantastic duck salad…..just healthy ;)))).
Make it: Combine all salad ingredients in a bowl and toss thoroughly.
Make it: Combine tuna with parsley, lemon, oil, tomatoes, salt, and pepper. Wrap in tortillas and top with spinach.
Make it: Stir together beans and salsa. Microwave for 1 to 2 minutes. Place warm bean mixture, guacamole, and lettuce on tortillas and roll up. Serve with grapes on the sid
Running is an aerobic exercise. The word “aerobic” literally means “with oxygen.” To get oxygen into the lungs, you need to breathe. While this should seem obvious, some runners have a shallow or labored breathing style. In some cases, this may result in severe muscle cramps, side stitches, poor performance or premature fatigue.
Furthermore, shallow breathing can sometimes result in a state of anxiety. Since many people run for purposes of relaxation, this is counter-productive. Additionally, anxiety causes physical tension, and tension can drain energy. That’s less energy you have for your workout.
1. Deep Breathing
Most runners only make use of the upper two thirds of their lung capacity. However, diaphragmatic breathing, which fills the lower part of the lungs, can increase a runner’s aerobic capacity, reduce stress and even eliminate the dreaded runner’s cramps.
Deep breathing exercises can be performed prior to a run or during a run. However, depending on when they are performed, there is a slight variation in technique. Prior to a run, take a deep breath in through the nose and hold for five counts. Then, slowly release the breath through the mouth. Holding the breath during a run is not recommended. Simply breathe in for five counts, and then breathe out for five counts. Keep in mind that it is not always easy to breathe through the nose while running. If this is the case, go ahead and breathe through the mouth.
Many runners do not realize that while they run, they are holding tension in their shoulders, wrists, hands and jaws. The exhalation phase of the deep breathing exercise is a good time to release this tension. As you exhale, you can shake out your hands, roll your shoulders and open your mouth to relax your jaw.
2. Cadenced Breathing
Although cadenced breathing may be difficult to master, it can be an excellent way to coordinate your breathing patterns with your running movements. In fact, elite runners use this method as a means of ensuring an even rhythm to their running. Most elite athletes use a 2-to-2 breathing cadence. This means that they take two steps per inhale, and two steps per exhale. At the end of the race, they might switch to a 2-to-1 cadence, which involves a two-count inhalation followed by one-count exhalation.
However, the 2-to-2 and the 2-to-1 breathing patterns may cause novice runners to get a bit light headed. If this happens, try a 3-to-3 breathing pattern.
3. The Cleansing Breath
When you wake up feeling congested, it may be difficult to motivate yourself for a run. Provided that you are not seriously ill, the cleansing breath can open your sinuses and clear out congestion, which might make it easier to go for a run.
The cleansing breath is borrowed from yoga. Use the two middle fingers of your left hand to close off your right nostril. Breathe in for four counts through your left nostril. Then, use your thumb to close the nostril. Hold the breath for four counts, and then release your fingers from your right nostril, and let the breath out for eight counts.
Repeat the process on the right nostril, using your right hand to close off the left nostril. After you’ve repeated the exercise a few times, you might want, and in fact be able to blow your nose.
(By Lisa Marie Mercer )
Given this list of ingredients, it is fairly easy to see that energy drinks are a deceptive combination of soft drink and psuedo-nutritional supplement. The largest problem with them is that people tend to abuse them, drinking more than one at a time, or mixing them with alcohol.
My main concern with the use of the herbs in these drinks is their source. The mass manufacturers of energy drinks are not required by law to list whether or not the herbs they use, have been sprayed with toxic pesticides, irradiated or watered with contaminated water supplies, so there is no telling what other toxins are contained in these drinks and whether or not these herbs will have a negative effect on the body.
The caffeine that is found in energy drinks is dangerous enough on its own. Not only is caffeine addictive, it acts as both a stimulant and a diuretic. As a stimulant, caffeine can make you have anxiety attacks, heart palpitations, and insomnia.
When consumed in large or regular quantities, caffeine can also make you jittery or irritable. As a diuretic, caffeine causes your kidneys to remove extra fluid from your body. If you consume energy drinks while sweating, these effects can be particularly dangerous because you can become severely dehydrated quickly.
Many younger people have started mixing energy drinks with alcohol because it makes them feel alert and energetic, even when they are drunk. Because alcohol and caffeine dehydrate our bodies, especially after a night of dancing. There have been many instances, where energy drinks mixed with alcohol has caused severe dehydration.
Because so much additional research needs to be done on the other ingredients found in energy drinks, I recommend all people avoid drinking energy drinks, they only ad more toxins to an already toxin burdened body and decrease our bodies internal water supply and natural detoxification processes.
The bottom line concerning energy drinks is that medical professionals simply do not know the long-term effects of consuming these beverages. It is known, however, that large amounts of sugar and caffeine are harmful to our bodies. For people to utilize energy drinks during exercise or other strenuous activity compounds the problem of dehydration, and does nothing to provide the body with any necessary nutrients or fluids.
Sports coaches and sports analysts often talk about the mental strength of an athlete when the athlete has overcome adversity to triumph. In a Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University report, John Wayne Creasy Jr. defines mental strength as “having the natural or developed psychological edge, that enables you to generally cope better than your opponents.” This mental fortitude helps them fight through pain and keep their head up in the face of defeat.
Mental strength is the ability of your mind to push your body forward in the face of adversity. It’s the ability to tell yourself to stay the course and follow through, even when you want to give up or it seems like all hope is lost. In the book “Mind Performance Hacks,” Ron Hale-Evans writes, “Mental strength is the ability to attack a problem, mental flexibility is the ability to stretch your mind to see all of the problem’s aspects, and mental endurance is the ability to keep at a problem until you solve it.”
Athletes get strength from their confidence in their own abilities and the abilities of their teammates. Part of winning is believing that you can win. This belief is mired in your belief in your unique qualities to overcome your opponent. In the book “Mental Toughness,” Michael Sheard writes, “Sporting achievement has been credited with coaches who built up a psychology of winning by concentrating on their team’s strengths, while failure is due, in part, to adoption of the mentality of defeat.”
Desire is a motivation that drives the mentally strong to succeed. Athletes thrive on the desire to be in the game. Doctors don’t give up on patients because they have that drive to not only cure that particular patient, but leave a legacy in the medical world by curing diseases that other doctors could not cure. Desire and drive propel the mentally strong.
Determination is the characteristic of mental strength that allows people to take a fall, get up, dust themselves and keep moving. Without willpower and determination, a runner who trips over a hurtle wouldn’t finish a race. John Wayne Creasy writes that athletes with mental strength are “pushing back the boundaries of physical and emotional pain, while still maintaining technique and effort under distress (in training and competition).”
External pressure can keep a person from completing a task. Therefore, pressure is an essential characteristic of mental strength. Focus keeps athletes at peak performance even when their teammates are having a lousy day. Personal matters can impact a corporate executive’s job performance, unless he can remained focus and separate home life from work life.
What is Mental Strength?
We all have it, although some people seem to have more than others! Do you notice how some people seem to be able to stick to their plans and achieve their goals! Whereas others seem to give in and fall back in to bad ways! Mental strength is needed to stick to your intention despite all the things that life and our own destructive habits throw at us.
It is hard work; you are often fighting engrained bad habits around poor diet, lack of exercise, negative thinking and bad self talk.
So the key is: Break your bad habits and create new good ones! You need to develop your mental strength.
What Helps to Develop Mental Strength?
We have already covered in the blog ‘Losing Weight – Intention’, you have to have a powerful vision that you believe in and don’t lose sight of. When the going gets tough you need something you can easily bring back to the forefront of your thinking.
You need to believe in yourself. The people who succeed haven’t got anything that you don’t have; they are ordinary people doing extraordinary things. They believe they can do it, and when you talk to them they will say that the voice in their head, ‘self talk’, is positively supporting them! No magic recipe here; you need to study and reflect on what your ‘self talk’ is saying, analyse it and dig for the truth, invariably it won’t be true, so then you can change the message.
From setting your intention (objectives) you should know some of the negative things that are preventing you from achieving your goals. You need to make a commitment to face these, if it is changing your diet or getting into an exercise programme, do it! Face the issue and confront it and keep confronting it even if you fail the 1st, 2nd, 3rd …… time. Get back up and get back on with facing the problem.
Regularly review what you are doing against your objectives, make sure you are staying on track – reflect!
Make sure you are doing everything you can to get enough sleep. Research generally says you will need between 6 and 8 hours a night, but the main thing is that you listen to you mind and body, you should try getting some extra sleep and see how you feel. As a rule, don’t ‘sleep in’ to get extra sleep, go to bed early.
Work, exercise, sleep and being with family and friends are all important, but don’t under estimate just chilling out. Make sure you take time out to do nothing; this will help you reflect on how you are feeling about your objectives and the progress you are making. Meditation is a great tool for helping out here!
Get a support network that helps, create a network of friends and family with whom you can share your successes and failures. Seriously consider those people that don’t help you, how can you minimise their impact!
What Hinders the Development of Mental Strength?
I don’t want to be a ‘Kill Joy’ but are the benefits you are getting from alcohol really worth it? I know from personal experience that Alcohol destroys ‘will power’, alcoholic drinks are not only high in energy, they spike your sugar levels to make you hungry, and then you just need to snack! Drugs – Where you have to take these for medical reasons then ensure you consult with your medical practitioner on how best to manage their impact. Illegal drugs it goes without saying are pointless and do you absolutely no service, seek help straight away if you have a problem.
We will be talking about good food practices over the coming months. The key elements that will damage your success and mean that you need even greater mental strength are:
The same goes for issues relating to exercise, what are the usual problems that make things even harder for you:
You CAN do it.
There is no doubt you can develop enough mental strength to achieve your objectives, you can find plenty of examples of people beating their weight problems as I know myself, having lost significant amounts of weight; ordinary people can do extraordinary things!
Start thinking about how you can implement some of these changes, don’t wait, just do it. Keep doing it, even if you fail, get back on plan, keep going.
Let us know how you get on!
(wrote : Gavin Henderson)