You may not have used a hula-hoop in ages but it can be a good addition to your daily workout. Lets discover its benefits.
Ten minutes – that’s all you need to spare every day if you want a slimmer waist, in addition to a nutritious diet and other form of workout of course.
Hula-hoops, the weighted kind, can be part of an enjoyable exercise that engages your core and midsection. Regular hula-hoop workout actually tones your muscles and waist.
A research team from the University of Wisconsin’s Exercise and Health Program, found that hula-hooping can burn up to 210 calories during a 30-minute workout, which means you burn seven calories per minute. While that may not sound like much, it is still more than what you get from doing power yoga, step aerobics and Pilates.
In choosing a hula-hoop, you need one that reach somewhere between your waist and chest when it’s resting vertically on the ground.
As for the weight, it is up to what you’re comfortable with. Generally, the smaller and lighter the hoop, the more energy you’ll need to keep the hoop going while the bigger and heavier the hoop is, the easier it’ll be for you to keep going. Hence, you can do it for a longer period of time.
It seems hula-hooping with heavier hoops can help you burn up to 100 calories in 10 minutes and the added resistance lead to pull-push contractions in the midsection where the exercise becomes more challenging, effectively reshaping problem areas.
To start on this fun workout, here’s a video you can follow:
Difficult, horrible or plain ol’ crazy bosses? Here’s what you can do.
You’re doing what you love, you get along wonderfully with your colleagues, and your office culture is relaxing and motivating. Yes, everything about your job is perfect, except for one major factor – your boss!
Difficult bosses are an unfortunate circumstance of your working life that can make things fairly hard for you. In fact, there is scientific research proving that working for horrible bosses is damaging to health! So you know you have it bad when even a mere mention of their name leaves you into a quivering mess of resentment and frustration.
Before your sanity decides to leave you and you hand in your resignation letter, here are some tips on handling employers that are a bit crazy, emotional, childish, dysfunctional, and every other negative adjective you can think of to describe a person.
Is The Problem You?
Is this the first boss that you can’t seem to work with, or have you been through several situations as such? Truth is, while it’s easy to blame the source of your stress on employers, the problem sometimes lies within yourself – so do some soul-searching (within yourself, other coworkers or HR Department) and make sure that the problem is not you before you go on and deem your boss irrational.
In a world where communication can be easily carried out 24/7, boundaries have become blurred or nonexistent between people – thus explaining why it’s good to set boundaries for yourself as soon as possible when dealing with bad (or any) bosses.
To avoid feeling the frustration and annoyance of your boss crawling up your neck even when it’s way pass your overtime, or he/she wants you to handle too big a project by yourself – make it clear in the most polite and understanding manner on what you are able and comfortable to do.
Communication Is Key
The way you communicate to your boss actually depends on his or her personality and management style. Consider when and how your boss likes to communicate in order to establish better relationship between the two of you – such as straight to the point information for no-nonsense leaders, and a softer tone for those who like to connect with the employees. In addition to that, know that body language also plays a big role.
Just because your boss is emotional, doesn’t mean that you should follow suit. Although it might not always be easy, be the bigger person and take the high road – try to remain calm and professional, even in the face of your boss’ fits of rage. If you think that it’s hard to do so, just ask yourself whether joining in on the negativity is worth the risk of losing your job.
Don’t Take Things To Heart
If you’ve realised that your boss has an explosive behaviour or is somewhat bipolar, try not to take things he/she says too personally. This is because when you do, it would only further fuel the tension and resentment you feel towards them. As the saying goes, ‘sticks and stone may break your bones, but words will never hurt you.’
Friends, lovers or nothing…sang John Mayer.
It’s all very fine and dandy when you first start going out with a potential boyfriend/girlfriend. Everything seems extra interesting. However, the real issues start to surface the more you get to know each other and the more time you spend with your other half. Sometimes things work out while other times, not at all.
Look past that proverbial rose-tinted glass and know the real issues of relationships. These are the main reasons why couples go down the road of splitsville that you may want to navigate away from.
How effectively you and your partner communicate makes a big difference to how successful your union is. When one party chooses to nag all the time and the other chooses to ignore or both preferring the silent treatment, the communication line is broken. The failure to observe, listen and talk out your opinions, worries, understanding, etc can cause you to drift apart.
No matter how hard some couples try, they just aren’t compatible. Sure the opposites attract rule still have valid point, but sometimes differing opinions or personalities between couples can start to clash and cause conflict eventually. This can be a source of deep frustration when you need to start making real life, adult decision and to stay connected.
A significant other does not function to fulfil whichever part of your life that you may feel is missing or incomplete. Never expect a relationship to make you feel whole or a person to be your source of happiness. Couples break up when a partner overburdens their companion with inappropriate expectations and demands.
You cannot force a relationship or impose your values or thoughts on another person. A relationship will be seething in resentment when one tries to decide how the other should behave, dress or live. The breakdown is accelerated even further when the need for control drives jealousy and personal insecurity into the relationship.
What felt like a strong connection that drew two people together doesn’t always hold up under pressure. As the initial chemistry wears off, it is hard to keep the connection going or stay interested because things and feelings do change. From best friends to now like strangers…the relationship has run its course and not many couples can survive growing apart.
Loss Of Self
Do not define yourself by your relationship. When someone starts going out with you, it’s because they are attracted to the person you are not some alter ego. But people tend to lose themselves after being in a relationship. Now when one of you begin to lose your priorities and goals, there is nothing left that makes you interesting.
Differing Goals & Values
This is perhaps the most frustrating cause of a break up. You might want different things in life but that doesn’t mean you love each other any less. If he wants kids and you don’t, or he doesn’t believe in savings but you do, these are tough situations to deal with. When two individuals can’t reach a compromise, there’s no choice but to part ways despite whatever lingering feelings there might be.
Infidelity is the ultimate deal breaker in a relationship. When you’re making a commitment to someone, it means staying faithful to him/her but if your partner can’t do that, where do you put your trust? While some couples can weather through a case of cheating, others simply find it unforgivable. In any way, cheating often indicates something is already wrong within the relationship.
So, have you been doing your squats properly? And no, we don’t mean the one you do in the loo!
Let’s talk about that one exercise everybody loves to hate – squats. When done right, squats can help tone and improve the strength of your inner and outer thighs, quads, hamstrings, calves, abs and buttocks, as well as increase your balance and bone density. And we haven’t even got started on how doing squats is the fastest and most effective way to get rid of cellulite!
To put it simply, squats are a great form of exercise.
However, there are times when squats can be bad for you. When executed wrongly, squats can cause you lower back and knee pains. But that honestly doesn’t mean you should not take up the exercise – you just have to do it right!
To gain the entire benefit of squats sans hurting yourself, below are some important pointers about the proper technique.
Warm up: Don’t just jump right into doing squats. It’s always best to perform a light warm up of about 5 minutes before squatting.
Parallel to the floor and do not pass toes: Aim to squat down until your thighs are parallel to the floor. Don’t let your behind drop below your knees.
Knees in line: Make sure your knees are in line with your toes and do not go in front of them when you lower your body. The image below is a perfect illustration of this point.
Going down too deep: Keeping with your pace and ability is a big factor. If you have adequate mobility and stability, it’s fine to squat down low. However, if a lot of knee flexion bothers your knees then you might have to cut your depth.
Weight on heels: In an ideal squat exercise, you should feel your body weight on your heels all the time.
Slow and steady: Don’t worry if you can’t complete the sequence in the first few days – we’ve been there and done that! It’s not a competition of who can do the most squats, so just keep on trying and do it for the positive effects.
Raise confident daughters in this ever-changing world.
In today’s world, it is rather easy to get disheartened with what we see or hear. It can’t be denied that women still are not being portrayed positively in many areas and for many girls, this can have a negative influence on them.
As parents, raising girls (and boys) with good self-esteem can be a daunting task. But it’s crucial to instil confidence and strong feelings of self-worth so that your children have the ability to face challenges and the belief to achieve their goals.
These simple tips can be a good way to boost your daughters’ self-esteem and nurture them to be strong, confident women in the future.
Instil respect for themselves
The one thing you should always instil in your girls is to have respect for themselves. They should be able to see the good that they have and regard their body as a sacred place deserving of love and care.
Remind them to believe in themselves
Kids always need reassurance and praise from their parents to grow. Let your words encourage your daughter to be brave, strong, confident, etc. so they are not afraid of wanting more for themselves.
Encourage body acceptance
Mothers have a huge impact on their daughter’s body image. So you should not obsess about food or put your own appearance down. Be a positive role model and treat your body with respect as how you’d want her to with her own body.
Praise their ideas, skills & accomplishments
Focus your praise on academic, athletic, ambitions and musical pursuits rather than physical appearance. Although it is ok to tell them they look nice once in a while, match your praises with non-appearance based compliments to inspire them to excel in substantial things.
Listen, encourage & speak
Communication is the tool for building self-esteem. It helps them develop strong conviction about themselves and what they believe in. Though this may work as a double-edged sword and your daughters might disagree with you on certain issues, allow them to speak their mind but stand your ground.
Let them make mistakes
You can’t truly appreciate the value of success unless you’ve failed before. Kids can’t really learn how to grow if they are never allowed to make their own mistakes. It is a lesson that you can’t teach.
Watch your stereotypes
Don’t trash talk other women and don’t let the boys/men in your house do it either. Avoid idolising certain beauty standards or buy into traditional stereotypes of how women should look like, behave, etc.
Discuss women’s portrayal in media
Let’s be honest here; the media such as magazines and TV are designed to sell the ideal female form but it’s rarely a healthy standard of beauty. Talk to your child about this, analyse, let them develop a critical eye to be aware and decode/filter media messages for themselves.
If you want a pleasant getaway, these are things you should avoid doing.
While the airport is an exciting bridge between home and your dream holiday, it can also be a rather stressful place to be. We all want to get to our destination the best and fastest route we can but sometimes things just don’t go that way.
In any scenario, don’t pile on the airport stress onto yourself or somebody else. According to Skyscanner, these are absolutely seven things you should never do:
You know what they say – you snooze, you lose! Well, in this case, you may think catching 40 winks is a good way to pass the time and get a burst of energy but there’s a chance you’ll miss your flight in the process! Stay awake till boarding the plane before you allow yourself some sleep.
Tempting as it is to start your holiday on a high spirit, it is better to exercise some restraint until you’ve arrived at your destination. Being inebriated makes it harder to keep a clear head to deal with last-minute gate changes and it is likely you’ll be bursting to use the loo every half an hour.
Be a ‘gate lurker’
Don’t be that kind of person that hang around the gate waiting for boarding like it’s some twisted game of musical chairs. Before you know it, you’re causing a queue as far as the eyes can see. Relax; you’ve already been allocated your seating anyway.
Lose your temper
Again, the airport can get stressful and tempers do flare but that doesn’t mean you should lash out at the next person over the slightest issue. Sometimes situations are beyond control like flight delays, duty free restrictions, sold out donuts, etc, don’t take it out on those around you.
Try to be funny
Look, there’s a place and time for humour. The airport is not one of it. With security being tightened around airports of the world today, you don’t want to be deemed as a possible threat by security staff and risked being taken into custody.
Jump the queue
Nobody likes a queue jumper/cutter! Don’t lose your manners due to minor delays, i.e. the person if front of you can’t seem to scan their passport or boarding pass or the old uncle/aunty have trouble locating their gate. Remain courteous and have your self-respect in tact.
Play videos/music loudly
There’s perhaps nothing more irritating than the lost of social decorum. We get it that you want to enjoy your entertainment as you pass the time away but don’t be distracting the other travellers while you’re at it. Pipe it down!
Seven days a week – when do you usually have your sexy time?
When it comes to being intimate, the experts are divided on the best day to get your pleasure on. Though, it is not much of a difference really.
Case study #1
Researchers at the London School of Economics say Thursday is the best time for sex. This is because men’s and women’s levels of cortisol – you know the one responsible for stimulating our sex hormones – are at the highest point of the week.
Apparently sex on a Thursday morning is even better. One possible explanation is that Thursday has been found to be the most happiest day of the week because we’re just one day away from Friday, the start of the weekend. Which leads us to…
Case study #2
This research from Italy’s University Of Catalonia gathered that Friday and Saturday to be the days when most women in a relationship will be active in bed. Activities include foreplay, masturbation, engaging with sex toys and intercourse.
Also, it’s been shown that a woman’s cycle can influence her desire in sex. The study found that single women were more active during the beginning stage when estradiol controls ovary maturation. As for women in relationships, they were active during the beginning and end stage of a cycle when progesterone is at its highest.
We’ll leave you to your own conclusion. Now whatever the day of the week it is, you can get your partner and yourself in a frisky mood with these simple tips:
Massage – a pampering rubdown not only releases stress but the skin-on-skin contact also stimulates the sex hormone oxytocin. The more oxytocin is released, the more desire you’ll feel. So get the oils ready!
Read – erotic literature before bedtime sure helps get things steamy in no time. You don’t need to read the whole book, just pick out a particular detailed paragraph and read it to him or vice-versa. Fireworks will happen!
Scent – it has been found that the smells of cucumber, licorice and baby powder can turn women on, with an increased of 13 per cent vaginal blood flow. While pumpkin pie and lavender increase blood flow by 11 per cent. Now you know what to have for dinner tonight!
Shower – being clean together makes you feel sexier and more open to each other’s body. The naked view also helps set the tone for the rest of the evening. Jump into the shower with your partner and you might just have a spontaneous session right in the bathroom.
Avoid unnecessary weight gain with good everyday eating habits.
There are times when it’s easy to overeat and thus pack on pounds; especially during the festive seasons, parties or even when you’re out on a date! Fret not though, because carrying out healthy and daily eating habits can help you maintain your weight and figure.
Read on below for some simple tips and tricks to help you keep in shape, without skipping your favourite slice of cake as a dessert treat.
Do Not Skip Meals
Do not ever, ever skip meals; especially breakfasts! Instead of fasting, fuel yourself up on foods that have a lot of water, fibre, or both — such as fruit and veggies. If you’re constantly pressed for time, a glass of juice, smoothie or yoghurt is better than nothing.
If you have a desk job, chances are that you’d often eat out. If that’s the case, try skipping lunches once in awhile and opt to bring your own homemade salad. Not only will this help keep your lifestyle greener, you’d also be saving yourself some cash.
In case you’re looking for some quick and yummy salad dressing, click here for some suggestion.
Sip On Ginger Tea
Not only is ginger good for one’s digestive health, it is also advantageous for weight loss because it is a fat burner that burns excess fat, sans affecting the general weight. This is why it helps to drink it throughout your day.
Stock Up On Superfoods
Did you know that certain superfoods can actually help you lose weight, as well as reduce your risk of diseases? Examples are:
- Sweet potatoes. These spuds contain lots of fibre, which makes you feel fuller for longer
- Apples. The antioxidants of these superstars help prevent metabolic syndrome, a condition marked by excess belly fat or an “apple shape”
- Oats. These grains have up to 5 grams of fibre per serving, making them one of the most filling food choices
Have More Soups and Liquid Meals
Smoothies, juice meals and soups make for good alternative meal choices. This is because these are pre-digested meals that will keep you feeling full and hydrated until your next solid meal.
You can also consider doing liquid meals on the days when there are no big dinner plans.
With the increasing number of dengue cases occurring around Malaysia, knowledge on the signs, symptoms and precautions of the illness is crucial.
What Are The Signs and Symptoms?
Here’s the low-down on dengue fever: All it takes is one bite from one Aedes mosquito to infect a person. It is also important to note that the signs are not immediate after the bite — the virus would usually takes five to eight days to incubate before symptoms begin to appear.
Due to the fact that there are different severities of dengue fever, the symptoms can vary and are categorised into these three stages below:
Mild Dengue Fever: Symptoms of this stage can appear up to seven days after the Aedes mosquito bite, and usually disappear after a week. The good news is that this form of the disease hardly results in serious or fatal complications. Symptoms of mild dengue fever are:
- Aching muscles and joints
- Body rash that can disappear and then reappear
- High fever (40°C) for up to a week
- Intense headache
- Pain behind the eyes
- Vomiting and feeling nauseous
Dengue Hemorrhagic Fever (DHF): In some cases, mild dengue fever might gradually result to DHF after a number of days. As DHF is fatal if left untreated, timeliness is a key factor to treatment during this stage. Mild dengue fever symptoms tend to occur in DHF, as well as the ones listed below:
- Bleeding from your mouth/gums
- Clammy skin
- Considerably damaged lymph and blood vessels
- Internal bleeding, which can result in black vomit and faeces (stools)
- Lower number of platelets in blood – these are the cells that help clot your blood
- Sensitive stomach
- Small blood spots under your skin
- Weak pulse
Dengue Shock Syndrome: This is the worst form of dengue, with fatality rates up to as high as 50%. Along with mild dengue fever symptoms, signs that are likely to appear are:
- Intense stomach pain
- Sudden hypotension (fast drop in blood pressure)
- Heavy bleeding
- Regular vomiting
- Blood vessels leaking fluid
What Precautions Can We Take?
Although there are neither vaccine nor drugs that can successfully prevent the infection of dengue, certain precautions can be done to prevent the breeding and biting of Aedes mosquitos.
1. Mosquitos are more active during early mornings, late evening and night; which is why it’s advised to stay clear of dengue hot spots and breeding grounds during these times.
2. Install mosquito screens in windows and doors.
3. Prevent mosquito bites by wearing socks, shoes, long pants and/or long sleeved tops.
4. Insect repellents are your best friends. If you’re not a fan of the spray on types, get anti-mosquito patches.
5. Take note and clean up potential breeding grounds around your home and surroundings:
Parents, it’s only natural to want your child to succeed and you can see if he or she is on the right track with the right questions.
This school year, make it a point to actively engage with the teachers in your kid’s life. They’d usually be the first to notice your little one’s talent and ability, as well as weaknesses. Get an idea of how your son or daughter is faring in their education with these helpful questions:
“When you’ve given directions on a particular task, does my child get right to work?”
It’d be good to know early if children who stall have trouble processing information or focusing. It could also be an indication there’s lack of motivation or just plain defiant. Check to see if other kids in the classroom have the same problem, or whether they are the distraction. What you want to learn is how the teacher plans to motivate your child so you can start doing the same at home.
“How do you encourage positive and proactive behaviour?”
The way students are addressed in a classroom setting can make a difference in their reaction or response. It is especially important that children are encouraged, not embarrassed so that they have the opportunity to correct themselves and be better.
“Does my child take pride in the quality of his or her work?”
Aside from checking if they’re doing their homework correctly, you should see if your child is driven to perform at his or her best. Find out if the teacher accepts your child’s work as is, or if they expect more. The goal is to see if your kid needs more support with the assigned work.
“Is my child able to find partners for group work?”
If your son/daughter is having a hard time teaming up, it could mean they’re facing difficulty getting along with others; they might be unaccepted socially or just shy. Ask if your kid is bossy, lazy or silly in group efforts. Discuss this so you and the teacher can work to change those qualities.
“How is my child like in class/how is his or her personality like?”
You’d be surprised but teachers often know a different “version” of the kid than the one you see at home. This is because their behaviour tends to vary between home and school setting which may be due to parents expectation, peer pressure, etc. Knowing how different they are can give you and the teacher a deeper insight on why they may do certain things the way they do.
“Does my child like school?”
Though it is one of the simplest questions around, most parents don’t think about bringing this up. Truth is your kid’s enjoyment and motivation toward school is important, as it is an indication of whether the learning experience will count to something bigger in the future, i.e. success, confidence, etc.
Source: The MH Dad