The power of visualization

If you always put limits on everything you do, physical or anything else, it will spread into your work and into your life. There are no limits. There are only plateaus, and you must not stay there, you must go beyond them.” – Bruce Lee

One of the first things I learned when I started my journey in bowling was the importance of believing in yourself. Sure we hear that all the time, but it plays a big role in physical activity. Any Olympic athlete will tell you how much they visualize success. Michael Phelp said visualization is the most important process on his routine before a competition.

Most people fall into one of two categories when it comes to success. The first are those who are great at anticipating everything that could happen in any given situation. They prepare themselves for multiple scenarios. The second group has a clear vision of how they want things to play out and puts all of their energy into creating their desired outcome.

Some of simple steps to incorporate visualization into your daily routine according to Inc. are:

  • Decide exactly what you want
  • Choose an image
  • Visualize daily

As you routinely and intentionally visualize a desired outcome, and step into the belief that it is possible, our brains increase the motivation to make it happen. We become more and more determined to do whatever it takes to achieve our goals.

See it. Say it. Sense it.

 

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All natural face mask

Sometimes natural ingredients may be better for fighting those stubborn blemishes rather than drug store washes, masks, and moisturizers. Here is an apple pie face mask recipe from Never Homemaker that works wonders!

The recipe is simple:

What you’ll need . . .

  • 1/2 banana
  • 1/4 cup rolled oats
  • 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
  • 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

Directions:

  1. Simply put all ingredients in a bowl (or mortar and pestle) and mix well. Use a fork or spoon. Just make sure everything is well incorporated.
  2. Then wash your face with a mild soap. Take about 1/3 to 1/2 of the mixture and place it on your face and let sit for between 5 and 10 minutes.
  3. I recommend washing the mask off your face in your kitchen sink to avoid clogging your drain (from experience!). Then pat dry with a towel.
  4. Store the remaining max in a small container. Refrigerate. Use within three days.

Why these ingredients?

  • Apple Cider Vinegar: It has excellent cleansing properties as a powerful skin detoxifying and purifying agent.
  • Banana: According to the blogger, it helps oily skin by narrowing pores.
  • Oats: It can help with multiple skin problems such as acne, pimples, dryness, wrinkles, blemishes, dermatitis, shingles, eczema, and excessive tanning.
  • Cinnamon: It is a great acne remedy.

Brown sugar pear steel cut oats

“While pears are delicious all on their own, they’re even better browned in a little butter and brown sugar.”

On a chill fall or winter morning, or any morning for that matter, nothing is more satisfying than a warm bowl of steel cut oats! Topping it with a layer of the brown sugar pears and pecans is perfection.

Recipe:
Serves: 2
INGREDIENTS
  • 3/4 cup steel cut oats, dry
  • 1.5 cups water
  • 1.5 Tbsp butter or olive oil (non-dairy butter for vegan)
  • 2-3 Tbsp brown sugar
  • 2 Bosc pears, peeled, cored and chopped*
  • 1/4 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 Tbsp Lemon juice
  • Additional toppings: pecans, granola, nut butter
INSTRUCTIONS
  1. Start your oats by bringing 1.5 cups water to a boil in a small saucepan. Once boiling add a pinch of salt, then your oats. Swirl to coat then cover and turn heat to low. Cook for 15-20 minutes or until the water is absorbed and the oats are tender.
  2. In the meantime, prepare your pears. Heat a medium saucepan over medium heat. Once hot, add olive oil or butter. Once bubbling, add brown sugar and stir. Then immediately add in pears, lemon juice and cinnamon and stir to coat. Cover to steam and soften the pears and cook for 10 or so minutes or until tender and golden brown. Once tender, remove the lid to allow them to caramelize a bit more. Remove from heat.
  3. Divide oats between two bowls and top with equal servings of pears. I also added a few pecans, which added a nice crunch and more protein.

The steel cut oats can be subbed by another grain such as rolled oats or quinoa. Even if pears aren’t your thing, you can sub in apples or even blueberries. For more information and pictures, go to the original post from Minimalist Baker.

At home workouts

As mentioned before in the previous post, there are some benefits to working out at home. If you are lost on what to do, here are some workout plans that you can try. For descriptions on how to do these exercises see this article by iVillage.com.

Here is an overview of a sample 30-minute routine:

You will be using your own body weight as resistance. 30 seconds of rest is allowed between each exercise.

  1. Warm up for eight minutes; however you can get your own heart rate up. This may include jogging, jumping jacks, or even dancing to your favourite song.
  2. One minute of jungle squats (Lower body)
  3. One minute of push ups (Upper body)
  4. One minute of reverse V lunges (Lower body)
  5. One minute of modified chair dips (Upper body)
  6. Two minutes of cardio (Whole body)
  7. One minute of ab exercises (Whole body)
  8. Thirty second break.

Repeat steps 2-8 three times. If you perform this workout three times a week for three weeks with two days of 30 minute cardio in addition to this, you should feel stronger and have more energy to do more. Record how many you do per minute to see if you make an improvement each week.

Experiment with different exercises and see what types of exercises work best for you, or even if working out at home suits your schedule.

Working out at home is better

If you don’t have access to the gym or the thought of a crowded gym makes you cringe, there’s a simpler and cheaper way that you can still stay fit; work out at home. There are pros and cons to both working out at home and in the gym.

Getting the motivation to workout may even be difficult as it is, but actually transporting yourself to the gym is a whole other battle. You have to get dressed, drive to the gym, change into workout clothes, and anything else in preparation to actually workout. Gyms are also getting more expensive and busy during the times that you are available to go.

Here are some more reasons why working out at home is even better than the gym:

  • Home offers a place that fits your program
  • Home offers a place to get the results you desire
  • Home offers a chance to use effective equipment
  • Hone offers an environment where you can better concentrate
  • Home offers the best way to achieve the workout you planned
  • Home offers the change to exercise without ego

Even if you do not have weights at home, do not worry. Working out without weights has actually been proven to both intensify and speed up your metabolism. If you can avoid the distractions that may exist in your home, working out there may actually be even better.

In the end, it is your decision as to whether or not you decide if working out at home will work for you or not. It all depends on your needs, desires, and daily schedules.

It is important to have a cheat day while dieting

“Cheat days” may be a touchy subject for dieters because many are all for it, yet many are also quite against it. Some struggle with it because they feel like being allowed to indulge in unhealthy foods for a day will make them feel guilty and consequently make them develop bad habits again. However, your physical and mental health can actually benefit from a cheat day every so often.

It’s important to understand what a cheat day actually is. It doesn’t mean that you can spend an entire day eating whatever you please, once a week. Instead, it means you can designate one day where you can eat something that you may have cut out of your diet such as bread, pizza, cake, cookies, or ice cream. It can even be as simple as ordering a carbonated drink rather than water.

The purpose of cheat days are to reward yourself for all of your hard work; it can be something that you look forward to and work towards. It can help you fight with your temptations knowing that you already designated a day where you can have that treat, rather than constantly fighting it every day. Without a cheat day, you may be in danger of binge eating if you finally give in. Then, it can lead to starving yourself or crash dieting which will ultimately be harmful to your overall health and fitness plan.

See Dr. Oz’s “Fat-urday” cheat day for an example of what you could do if you are struggling with this.

Benefits of green tea

Originating in China, green tea has been used as a medicine for thousands of years. It serves many great purposes from lowering blood pressure to preventing cancer.

Some of the benefits of green tea according to Lifehack are:

  1. Weight loss
  2. Diabetes
  3. Heart disease
  4. Esophageal Cancer
  5. Cholesterol
  6. Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s
  7. Tooth decay
  8. Blood pressure
  9. Depression
  10. Anti-viral and anti-bacterial
  11. Skincare

How much should you drink? Even though green tea has many benefits, one cup of tea a day will not be sufficient. Many sources say that you can drink as little as two cups a day, up to even ten cups. You just need to find a good range that personally works for you so you get the benefits without having to go to the bathroom constantly.

Another notable point is that green tea contains caffeine. Therefore, you should be aware if you are sensitive to caffeine then you should limit yourself.