Monthly Archives: August 2016

Exercise in the morning for improved productivity.

exercise improves productivity

If I’m totally honest with you, I’m not really a morning person. I mean, I want to be but I really love my bed. However, my brain works so much better in the morning that I have to face myself to get up and at them. And when I do, I couldn’t be more grateful.

After all, the early bird catches the worm right? And some of the most successful people in the world attribute their increased productivity levels at work to starting their day with some form of exercise.

Take Anna Wintour, editor of Vogue for example, she gets up at and hits the tennis courts at 6am every day. Richard Branson kicks off his working day off with a run and likewise with Starbucks President Michelle Gass.

Here are just a few reasons why exercising in the morning can help boost productivity.

It improves mental sharpness. Exercise increases the blood flow to the brain meaning that you become more alert and aware of what’s going on. A study from Bristol University found that after exercising, performance at work was consistently higher as was time management and mental sharpness.

You WILL feel less stressed. Stress is a killer. It doesn’t matter what is causing you the stress, if you don’t get it under control then it will do some serious damage to your health. However, exercise will help the way your body deals with that stress. It will boost your feel good endorphins, help you put aside thinking about work for the duration of your activity and improve your mood.

You’ll get your best ideas. I get some of my best ideas when I’m swimming. Clearing your mind and just thinking about how you move your body will get those creative juices flowing.

It saves you TIME. Time is something that we’re all short of. And who wants to hit a sweaty gym after you’ve sat at your desk for the last 8 hours? Answer: Nobody. But working out in the AM doesn’t just involve the gym. You can take part in the active travel movement, get your bike out of storage, dust off your trainers and cycle or run to work.

You will make better decisions. The endorphins that are released when exercising also improve the prioritising function of the brain. So by exercising you’re activating your ability to prioritise tasks and get things done in an organised manner.

You’ll feel more energetic. If you’re having to reach for a chocolate bar or energy drink to avoid the afternoon slump then something has to change. Exercising will give you a boost that lasts all day and also improve your endurance. Just a quick 15 minute workout per day can make all the difference.

And finally, you will sleep – better. Exercise will help improve sleep patterns, especially if you suffer from insomnia. But as well as helping you get to sleep, it will also help improve the quality of sleep that you get. Poor sleep won’t just make you feel tired and sluggish, it’ll so have some pretty serious knock on effects to your health and productivity. Regular exercise is the key to improving your sleep sessions so make sure that you find a routine that works and stick to it.

The benefits of working out in the morning far exceeds any cons that may crop up. Even if you’re not a morning person, there is always a way of slotting some form of activity in to your morning routine, whether it be taking part in active travel or just a quick 10 minute session before you hop in the shower.

Broaden Your Horizons

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Broaden your horizons culturally artistically and in any way that challenges you. Our daily lives can become repetitive as we find we that we get trapped in our comfort zones.

Here are some ways that we can broaden our horizons.

Gain More Knowledge

It can never be a bad thing to gain more knowledge, because the more that you know the further you are able to go.

If you love food, want to learn how to draw or anything else then you will find a course, a seminar or even a degree that can take you further into your passion and you will do something that you love.

Studying something that you love will not only broaden your horizons, it will also get you out of your comfort zone.

See The World

Many think that need to have a lot of money in order to see new places, but you can hop on a local plane, pack the car up and go for a road trip or become a tourist in your own city and explore the areas that you have always thought you have never had time for.

When we start exploring other areas, meeting new and different types of people we become culturally sounder. You can meet all sorts of people in your own city or if you are travelling further you can emerge yourself in the culture that surrounds you.

Take The Plunge

You may feel that every step you take in life and in your career has been carefully considered, but why not just take one big step that is bold.

The fact is that you shouldn’t be scared to do new things or do something that you have never done before.

We can easily broaden our horizons when we do something that is different from the usual and it can be as simple as volunteering at a shelter or learning a new craft or it can be huge like starting your own business.

Become Curious About The World

If people never asked questions about things and sought out the answers, we would not know what we do today.

Having questions and being curious can open doors and so can learning new things.

Ask questions about everything and if you don’t know the answer then find the answer or learn something that will give you the answer.

Get Out and Meet New People

One of the best ways to broaden your horizons is to meet new people and to expand your circle of friends. The people that you meet may have walked a different life to you and are able to share knowledge that you previously didn’t have access to.

Meeting new people that have different cultural backgrounds is a great way to learn more about people and even those that live in your own city.

 

Why Decadence Is Delicious

chocolate dipped strawberries

 

 

 

 

 

When we think of decadence we think of luxury and expensive items, but why can’t decadence be delicious?

Luxury chocolate is both delicious and decadent. Chocolate of this nature is hand crafted and usually limited in its production, making it a sought after decadence. These luxurious chocolates may cost more, but we can assure you that one bite is melt in your mouth, smooth, decadent and delicious.

Here is a look at the most decadent chocolates in the world.

2014 Harvest 50-Gram Bar from To’ak

This chocolate bar is sheer decadence that was made from 81% dark chocolate from the harvest of 2014. This bar was limited in units, with only 574 bars being released. The luxuriousness of the bar was further enhanced with a 116 paged booklet contained within the packaging. The bar number was engraved on the Spanish elm box.

Madeline Truffle from Knipschildt Chocolatier

The Knipschildt Chocolatier’s Madeline Truffle is made from 71% single bean Ecuadorian dark chocolate with a French Perigord truffle. Vanilla pods and truffle oil are infused with a cream and folded for 24 hours into the ganache. The real treasure of this chocolate though is the truffle!

Gold Chocolate Box from DeLafee of Switzerland

As you can expect from the name, gold is a huge influence in this decadent chocolate. The chocolate is wrapped with 24-karat gold flakes that you are able to eat and each box contains a minted gold coin that is aged between 1910 and 1920 from the Swiss national bank.

There is true craftsmanship in this chocolate as each gold leaf is applied by hand and the chocolate is wrapped in a silk draped wood box.

Prendime from Amedei

Cecilia Tessieri, who is the first female master chocolatier in the world, creates this chocolate in Tuscany. These 500 gram bars are a true statement that are is available in dark chocolate with an option of plain, with almonds or with hazelnuts, milk chocolate and white chocolate with hazelnuts.

Intense Valentine Gourmet Chocolates from Richart

These chocolates are truly gourmet and decadent as they are encased in 73% Venezuelan dark chocolate and features Criollo cacao. The real treat though is that every chocolate has been infused with an aroma. There are seven aromas, which are roasted, balsam, citrus, spicy, fruity, floral and herbal.

You will also receive a 73% dark chocolate plaque to nibble on.

Le Livre from Debauve & Gallais

In 2000, this French chocolatier celebrated its 200th anniversary and it was then that Le Livre made its debut. This chocolate box contains 35 chocolates, which are a mix of ganaches and pralines. The chocolates are placed in a gold embossed leather box that looks like a grand book.

Since the launch of this box, it has remained in the chocolatiers portfolio, which also contains bonbons, truffles, white chocolate bars, gold coins and hot chocolate chips.

Low carb veg-swaps for summer

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So summer may be coming to an end but that doesn’t mean that we can’t soak up the last few rays and enjoy super summery dishes. Summer is a great time for low carb eating, with fresh vegetables and fruits in abundance where easy cooking or no cooking is the rule. So, with a few more weeks of swimsuit season left, it’s always good to feel less bloated.

Here are some quick and easy ideas…

Courgette Noodles. 

If you don’t already have spiralizer then get yourself on to Amazon and get ordering.  Because whilst life is too short to avoid pasta all together, eating it every day isn’t the best idea. Plus, courgette noodles (or courgetti spaghetti as we call it in this household) is super quick – so no more standing over a boiling pan.

Cauliflower Rice (cous cous or mash “potato”).

For years I shied away from cauliflower because I had memories of it being served up at family dinners, boiled and grey. But cauliflower is not only one of the most versatile vegetables it is also one of the healthiest things you can feed your body. Cauliflower makes a great alternative to rice, cous cous and even potato. It’s also pretty good marinated and baked as a whole.

Kale Crisps. 

A glass of rose and a bowl of crisps – for me that’s a bit of bliss right there. But bake up a batch of kale chips instead. They have all the savoury goodness and crunch that you want in a snack, but you’ll walk away from the session feeling good and guilt-free. Plus, you can add whatever flavourings you want. My favourite is black pepper and sea salt.

Aubergine. 

Aubergine is another vegetable that’s versatile. You can use it in place of lasagne sheets, instead of a burger bun and it’s delicious coated in a little olive oil and then grilled on the BBQ.

Lettuce or Spring Greens.

I love replacing heavy wraps with lettuce in the summer months. It gives a light, fresh taste and it doesn’t bloat you up as much as a wrap. Use in place of bread for sandwiches or make some lettuce tacos.

Ditch store bought dips.

There is nothing nicer than home made guacamole. And it’s super simple. Just add a whole avocado, garlic, chilli, salt and a squeeze of lime to a food processor and blitz until you’ve achieved your desired consistency.

You don’t need to ditch carbs all together, after all, they play a huge part in how our brains and bodies function. But by making a few savvy swaps you can ensure you have a healthier plate.

How To KettleBall

exercise kettleball

 

 

 

 

 

Summer is here and what better time to learn how to kettleball.  We have a definitive guide from the mavens over at positive health wellness.

Look, Learn and Linger with toned body and sculpted arms, because as you know the art of exercise is to engage your entire being with focussed mind.

So let us begin:

Kettlebells

Here are some positive reasons as to why you should incorporate kettleballs into your routine for overall fitness and lean arm muscles.  They are a great variation to keep your motivation going, but are not designed to replace any other activities that you may be undertaking.

As with all other areas in life a little bit in moderation does you good! This is no exception and has some serious advantages when added to your regular circuits.

Be careful when starting with any kind of weights always consult a professional or seek medical advice to avoid injury or illness.

There are some fantastic and stimulating drills awaiting you at our guru studio so follow this link and enjoy!

#PositiveHealthWellnessAwaits

 

When Does Anger and Violence Serve Us?

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Anger and violence are emotions that stem from different feelings such as resentment and frustration. It can also be caused by the environment a person exists in. Other trigger factors are stress, embarrassment, financial situations, abuse and familial situations.

Almost everyone gets annoyed at one point in their lives and these occurrences are normal. In fact, according to a study made by Harvard medical School, anger issues are manifested by 8% of adolescents which can result in a lifetime diagnoses of explosive disorder which are intermittent in nature.

However, there are those with hostility issues that can lead to maladaptive behaviours and violent outbursts. It becomes a concern when an individual is not able to control or manage this vexation. It can result in brutality on oneself and other people. Does anger and violence serve us at all?

Fortunately, there are good points that can be associated with pique. If properly managed and channelled, it can produce positive results. What is important is to recognize the feeling when it presents itself and use it to your advantage.

If there is one good thing about being cross it is realizing that you need to walk away from the situation. Say, you are in a relationship and you have been neglected or abused by your partner, physically or emotionally. If you don’t feel that something is not right with what has been happening and you are just fine with it, you will stay in the relationship and with the aggressor for a long time until it is too late to leave. A time will come when you will lose your self-esteem and even be physically harmed. But if you feel resentment and danger in your relationship, your reciprocal feelings can trigger you to leave that set of circumstances.

You can also feel motivated to become a better person and improve on your craft. Sometimes, it helps to have some fire in your belly, the desire to make it in your chosen field despite bullying or mockery that you will end a failure a sentiment that can propel you to higher achievement.

Thus, anger might be healthy but violence will never be right.

It might be true that some groups turn to violence to achieve their desired outcomes or to convey their message, especially as we have seen demonstrated in recent global affairs. But these actions only instill fear in others. Violence can lead not only to harmful things but also in loss of property and lives.

 

When Does Menopause Signify Freedom Instead of Bondage

Biological clock ticking concept with a time piece over human uterus and ovaries as a fertility metaphor for the stress of making a baby versus the reproductive age of a woman.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Some women are not happy about the thought of reaching the menopausal age. For them, this means hormone therapy, hot flashes and mood swings. However, there is more to menopause than an indication that a woman is past her reproductive age. Apart from being a natural occurrence, menopause offers you benefits. Instead of limiting the activities you can do, this stage in your life is in fact setting you free!

Family planning sorted

If you have children and do not have plans to have more, menopause means you need not worry about contraception. You can enjoy being intimate without the fear of pregnancy.

A convenient benefit of menopause marks the end of sanitary products. And the best thing about this is that you can wear white whenever you fancy!

What else do you need to know about this natural biological function?

If menopause happens to you within the normal sequence of your life, that is, you did not have early menopause or have undergone surgery such as TAHBSO or total hysterectomy, this means that you are approximately in your early 50s or late 40s. This marks the time that you can enjoy more time for yourself. The menopausal age is the time when you can be more adventurous and enjoy life more.

Are you one of those women who are dreading menopause? If you are, now is the time to have a change of heart because for some of those who are already there, menopause is liberating not limiting.

Survival pack includes;

handheld fan for those quick cool down moment, excellent skin care regimes to keep your glowing radiant and well bathed skin in check, remedies such as black cohosh or similar to keep the flashes under control, remedies to tighten and perfect the facial contours.  Comfortable sweat wicking clothing worn in layers to cool or warm easily