Resistance Training Exercises that Fits Your Daily Routine.
Fitness experts hear it all the time: I just don’t have the time to go to the gym. This is not just an excuse but just a fact of life for most of us. Between making the kids breakfast, packing them off to school, getting yourself ready for work, working all day, coming home to fix supper, etc., etc, who has time to pamper themselves any more these days? Sure, we all know the physical problems that we will get if we don’t take time to exercise but we just canít seem to fit any into our busy lifestyles.
The problem is that if you don’t exercise regularly you will not have the energy to cope with the daily grind. It is a well established fact that people who do regular exercise have more energy, get sick less often, and have a much more positive mental attitude about life than those who do not.
You don’t need to go to a gym to do resistance training exercises. All you really need is your body and something to push against. One of the easiest resistance training exercises is the good old pushup where the resistance comes from gravity as you push your body off the floor with your arms. Pushups are difficult for many people that are not in peak condition.
If you have any kind of obesity problem or arthritis you could have trouble doing regular pushups. Experts suggest that you do an incline pushup which are much easier to do. Instead of pushing up off the floor, you push off of a bench or some other raised fixed surface that you can put your palms on. If you still can’t do these then you can do the cheat pushups with your knees on the ground.
Pull-ups are another one of the most popular resistance training exercises. The resistance in this case comes from gravity again. Standard pull-ups where you are actually suspending your body in the air are very difficult to do for most people who are not in great physical condition. For overweight people or people with less upper body strength experts suggest a moderated pull-up where the person’s feet never actually leave the ground and they just pull themselves up as far as they can. This helps to stretch the muscles of the arms and the shoulders and can still be difficult enough to give you a great arm workout.
Isometrics have long been good resistance training exercises and one great isometric routine is to just push your cupped hands against each other in front of you, pushing as hard as you can from both sides. You need to flex your muscles while pushing your arms together, then relax for a few seconds while your recover, then do it again. These types of exercise can give you great upper body strength and do not take much time or any special equipment.
You can do tricep pushups by using a bench and facing away from the bench, extending your legs out while holding your body off the bench with your arms behind you. Try and go down as far as you can and then up again. This works the backs of the arms and with enough repetitions will give you a great workout.
Resistance training exercises do not always require weights, though it can help to have some small, light dumb bells around for a quick routine. Pick up the light dumb bells and stand with your legs slightly apart. Throw slow punches with the weights in your hands, alternating arms. This is a great shoulder and arm workout and will give you a good punch after you do it long enough.
Now is a Great Time to Get Into Investment Real Estate.
It has been over fifty years since real estate prices and interest rates have been this low at the same time. After the zillion megaton explosion of the real estate bubble, prices have dropped to all time lows and bargains abound. It does not take a genius to see that right now cash is king and if you have a few bucks set aside you need to look into investment real estate.
You need to be extremely careful however and use all of the tools at your disposal before making the leap. All you need to do is a drive a few blocks in any urban area to see all of the For Lease signs that are there, and many that have been there for a long, long time.
Because of the floundering economy, many businesses have gone belly up and one of the biggest casualties of the entire recession (can you say depression?) has been and will continue to be commercial investment real estate landlords. They are the ones that are left holding the proverbial bag when businesses collapse and tenants are forced to flee, many of them without paying any lease severance penalties. When businesses can no longer afford to stay in a commercial space for want of revenue, the onus goes onto the landlord to make sure that there is a great dialogue with the tenant.
In the old days a landlord would just evict a defaulting tenant without too much thought and then raise the lease prices for the next incoming business. With today’s epidemic of failing retail shops, service establishments, restaurants, auto and body shops, and ever other kind of small to medium sized businesses, investment real estate leasing space is begging for tenants.
The landlords can avoid a hasty departure by failing businesses by working with them to temporarily reduce or defer lease payments. This will give the establishment much needed breathing room and free up some cash flow. The benefit to the landlord is that he will eventually see some rents from the businesses when the economy picks up. One thing is for certain and that is that the economy will improve eventually. It may take longer this time to recover, but historically speaking, economies are cyclical and they always come back. When the economy and the failing businesses do recover the landlord will have looked like an angel to the business, eliciting loyalty, plus it will have made sound business sense.
For commercial real estate owners who cannot work out a plan for their tenants the consequences are grim. Take away that large payment each month and pretty soon you will feel it in your pocketbook, even if your pockets are deep. Many have been forced to default on their commercial loans and have watched their properties get seized by the banks.
If you are an investor looking to get into investment real estate then this is a great time. You can pick up an REO (bank owned) property for very little. Just make sure that you have a tenant or two lined up before you purchase or you could be the next one facing a foreclosure of your own.
All you have to do is turn on the television or the radio nowadays to hear someone talking about how the economy is affecting this year’s prime travel season. And, if you’re paying attention to those individuals or any advertising, you’ll know that right now might be the ideal time to find the best travel deals.
Most tourist attractions right now are so desperately trying to lure people into their environments that they’re coming up with all sorts of clever ways to get people to make a purchase. Right now, you may find that some of the best travel deals are to be found in places where you never thought that you could find any discounts. I mean, let’s face it hotels double and triple their room rates during peak seasons. It may be the smallest room imaginable but you end up paying equivalent to an elaborate suite. Well, right now, getting a cheaper hotel room may be the best travel deal possible.
Some hotels are going to great lengths in order to ensure that there are no vacancies. You may find offers for
meals being included or amusement park tickets. Some places will offer gift cards for gas stations in order to make it worth your visits. Here’s a hint though ñ some of those hotels will be making their offers publicly known online. Others will only be making those offers if you pick up the phone and call the hotel directly. So, even if you think that you’re getting the best travel deal online, you may still want to pick up the phone and give them a call. Don’t hesitate to ask if they have any discounts, packages or incentives. If they’re not offering anything, try someplace else. And don’t hesitate to tell them what deals you found at a competitor. They may be willing to match whatever you found.
Some of the other best travel deals that youíll find right now are deals on airfare. Those airlines don’t want to lose any more revenue than what they are currently losing. In fact, every single time they have an empty seat on a flight, they are losing money. You could easily find right now that there are some
amazing deals to be purchased. You may find that looking around on various sites may land you the best travel deal, rather than calling the airline directly. Again though, shop around. Don’t just assume that the first site you look at has the best travel deal possible. Look for those deep discounts and incentives. Though a lot of people may shy away from using a travel agent, if you’re planning an extended getaway, a honeymoon or more detailed vacation, you may find that a travel agent can get the best travel deal for you. However, with some time, energy and flexibility, you may find that you are your own best travel agent.
Leaving a day earlier or later could save you hundreds of dollars. Flexibility is always the key to the best travel deals, but the economy’s woes right now are certainly helping out with getting some amazing discounts right now. If you are able to afford to travel for a short time or even an extended time, take advantage of some of the few perks of the economy. Utilize the best travel deals to your advantage and perhaps you could end up with the vacation of a lifetime, and one that you will remember as the best bargain you could have ever found.
These Days, I do All of My Banking Business Online.
I opened my first checking account about 14 years ago and did nearly all of my banking on my own. I’d balance my checkbook manually, and on those rare occasions I needed to check my balance for something, I would either call an automated system or simply wait for my monthly statement to arrive.
That all changed after a few years when I found that I could do my banking business online, and I have been doing it that way ever since.
I have to admit that I love doing my banking business online for a number of reasons. When I think back to the days of balancing my checkbook and making sure that everything jibed with my statements each month, I have to laugh a little, because it just seems so archaic.
It is so easy to go online, look up your bank account information and balance everything electronically. I can see what money I have coming in, check for fees being taken out, see when they are withdrawn from my account and adjust my records accordingly.
Another thing that I really love about doing my banking business online is that I can easily transfer money from my checking account to my savings account and vice versa. I try to put money from checking into savings every time I get paid, and there have been a few times that I had to take some money out of savings to cover some larger bills.
One of the biggest benefits of doing my banking business online is the fact that it is so much quicker than having to call the bank, go through a series of prompts, and then typing in your checking account number and password. Then you have to hear more prompts before it gets to the option of hearing your account balance.
If something was off, there was no way to see what the problem was and correct it until my monthly bank statement came. By doing my banking business online, I can look at my entire transaction history and see exactly what has been done with both my checking and savings accounts. There is a tremendous peace of mind that goes along with that.
I also like that fact that banking online allows you to look at other features the bank offers, such as IRA accounts and investment opportunities. It really helps in terms of financial planning, and you can research at your own pace without having to go to the bank to talk to a personal banker.
For me, performing my banking business online has made my life much easier. I know that it is not for everyone, as I know many people who still prefer to do it the old-fashioned way. I, however, could not imagine doing it any other way and would recommend trying it out to anyone interested in simplifying their life.
To Learn About Classical Music, Start with Baroque Music
While the beginnings of classical music date back many, many centuries to the Italian Renaissance period, what most people consider to be classical music today was really started in the late 1600s in the form of a musical style called Baroque music.
Such great composers as Johann Sebastian Bach, Antonio Vivaldi and Henry Purcell were Baroque music composers that left an indelible mark on the world of classical music.
Bach wrote the famous Brandenburg Concertos and Air on the G String, among many, many others, which are still played on classical music stations today, more than 300 years later.
Vivaldi wrote the Four Seasons, of which the Spring movement is one of the most recognizable pieces of Baroque music and classical music, for that matter ever written.
Purcell, the famous English composer, wrote Dido and Aeneas, which may rank as the greatest opera ever to come out of the Baroque period of classical music.
Baroque music is characterized by a unity of mood throughout an entire work, less frequent shifts in dynamics than its successors in the Classical or Romantic eras, and a devotion to sacred music, evident in Bach’s Jesu, Joy of Man’s Desiring, or Handel’s Messiah.
Another interesting tidbit about Baroque music is that the piano had not been invented yet, so the music composed during that period was done so on the harpsichord. One of the questions I am most often asked is why one never sees a piano concerto from the Baroque period of classical music, and I always have to tell them that the period pre-dated the piano.
Baroque music really kind of got things started for classical music as most people know it, and served as the foundation on which later composers, such as Mozart and Beethoven, would create their music.
As a matter of fact, it was Beethoven that once referred to Handel as the greatest composer that ever lived.
Baroque music was not simply limited to sacred music, either, as Bach wrote some of the greatest fugues, and Handel was renowned the world over for his ability to write great oratorios.
My uncle, who is also a great classical music lover, counts Bach and Handel as his two favorite composers of all time. They are not just his favorite composers of Baroque music, but his favorite ever, so I asked him about that. He told me that it is just hard to top the music that both men produced.
Baroque music was paramount to the development of classical music and was really the first era in the history of classical music in which multiple composers from several countries contributed a large body of work. It is one of my favorite eras of music, and once a person becomes familiar with classical music, Baroque is unmistakable in its form.
San Francisco Giants Baseball Positions and Pitching.
It is that time of year again when the boys of summer grab their bats and balls and hit the diamond for another long and exciting season of Americaís pastime, good old baseball. Spring training is over and the San Francisco Giants have had a chance to evaluate all of the new players coming up through the minor league ranks. Many baseball positions involve having great speed and skills at catching the ball, especially in the outfield and the Giants seem to have loaded up on speed and ball skills.
Baseball positions and position players are getting harder and harder to produce as each year goes by and San Francisco has been able to bring up a lot of players from their minor league clubs over the years, including Buster Posey, a phenom at catcher one of the hardest of baseball positions to play. Although Posey was sent back to the minors for more seasoning (and to extend arbitration), he had a fantastic spring training and exhibition season.
For the Giants, finding players to play baseball positions was of paramount importance, especially after last year when they improved quite a bit but were unable to get into the playoffs, even as a wild card contender. They have added Scott DeRosa in the outfield for his speed and defense, but primarily for his power in the middle of the lineup. Aubrey Huff has also been added for his hitting prowess. Pablo Sandoval, who barely missed getting into the All-Star Game last year, is solid at third base and may even win a Golden Glove this year if he plays up to his potential. Juan Uribe has become the everyday second baseman, at least until Freddy Sanchez comes back off the disabled list.
For the Giants, finding players to fit the baseball positions has not been the only glaring necessity in the off season. They also needed to find some RBIs in the middle of their lineup and for that extra pop they have added DeRosa and the hot-hitting Huff. They still lack that 100 RBI man, but are hoping that Pablo Sandoval or the powerful Uribe step into that role naturally. Benjie Molina has been signed for a one year contract and is expected to hit at least 15 home runs and provide some power, but his main role is being the field general out there calling the game from behind the catcherís mask.
San Francisco had another stellar year last year when it came to pitching. Young superstar Tim Lincecum won his second straight Cy Young Award which is awarded to the best pitcher in the league. Matt Cain had a great season and if Barry Zito can pick up at least 10 wins this year, the Giants could have a great shot at making the playoffs in 2010. Their starting lineup is second to none and they have brought back and expanded their incredible bullpen which features the almost unhittable Jeff Affeldt and closer Brian Wilson.
All in all this promises to be a wild and wonderful season for the Giants and if all the pieces fall in place you may see them late into October.
Old Time Country Music is Still the Best.
I grew up around country music. I have watched it change a lot over the years, and I have seen a lot of great country music singers, but to me, old time country music is still the best, and will always have a very special place in my heart. One of the first country artists I ever remember hearing was the great Hank Williams. My father would play his music all the time, and the movie Your Cheatin’ Heart was a regular fixture in our household.
I looked through my personal music collection the other day, and I found that the vast majority of my country CDs were of old time country music artists. Guys like Willie Nelson, George Jones, Merle Haggard and Waylon Jennings are among my favorites, and I have found that the more recent country artists just really don’t do it for me.
I think one of the things that most appeals to be about the old time country music is that it told such great stories. Willie Nelson’s Red Headed Stranger was an entire album that basically told one continuous story through a series of songs. It also seems that the older country singers really understood what it was to be country artists. They were not trying to appeal to fans of other styles of music, and they certainly weren’t trying to make country music into rock or popular music.
The old time country music singers knew exactly who they were and where they came from, and they sang for people who were from the same kinds of places and would understand what they were talking about.
The thing that I always find most interesting is that when I meet new people and ask them if they like country music, most of them act like it’s stupid or beneath them. Some people will reluctantly admit that they like some of it, but prefer a more mainstream style of music such as rock n’ roll or rhythm and blues.
I will even hear people do their impression of country music singers, and almost always they will parody the old time country music performers with real thick twangs, singing about something inane. Yet, when you read reports about the music that Americans are listening to, country music stations are almost always the most popular and abundant. I really love the old time country music singers and still listen to them on a regular basis. I really don’t care if people make fun of me for it, because it was how I was raised. I do like some modern country, and I listen to a few of today’s country artists, but for me, the older guys and girls are still the best.
School Music Programs in Desperate Need of Funding.
Across the country, school music programs are shutting down or being down-sized due to lack of funding. The economic situation has caused massive cutbacks to the public school systems around the United States and art and music education are regrettably the first to be cut most of the time. In no state is this being felt harder than in California, where legislators are trying to find Federal funds to make up an estimated $21 billion budget shortfall for the 2010 fiscal year.
Schools have had to eliminate many of their most popular programs including sports, after school activities, art, music, band, and even tutoring programs. Many schools have slashed teaching jobs wholesale and have cut back hours for the ones that remain. This is a critical test of our public education system and it is up to our good parents and concerned citizens as well as educational professionals to band together and fight these massive cuts. Nothing less than the future of our children is at stake.
Because of the core mandated testing system that is currently in place in the California school system, the only things that absolutely have to be funded is test preparation for the spring assessments. Since the districts get allocated money based on student assessments and testing averages, test preparation gets funded first. Students are taking tests on average between 20 to 40 days each semester.
That is way too much testing and is not necessary. Students should be learning, not cramming for tests. Most education experts agree that when students cram they donít absorb the material and days later (if not minutes) the material is forgotten. The cost to prepare, administer and score these tests is very high. The Corona-Norco school district in Southern California for instance has had to cut several music teachers, effectively eliminating their music program.
In March of 2009 students from Capistrano High School in Capistrano, California came out in force and used their rights to demonstrate to protest the unfair cuts to their program and brought to light the plight of school music programs throughout the state that are in jeopardy.
A study done in 2008 presented findings that school music programs actually help students to excel in their assessment and standardized testing. Score boosts of 22 percent in English and 20 percent in Math were recorded. This should come as no surprise to musicians who have known for years that their ability to focus improves significantly when they practice music regularly. A lot of learning music is memorization and repetition and being able to focus your energies on a task. These are some of the same attributes necessary to excel in academic work.
Celebrity Gossip News Has Lost Its Luster for Me.
I used to be the biggest hound for celebrity gossip news. I watched shows like TMZ and Extra on a regular basis, and I loved hearing the latest rumors about various celebrities. I started to realize a few years ago, however, that celebrities are human beings like everyone else, and celebrity gossip news quickly began to lose its appeal for me.
I think it is only natural to want to listen to gossip, and celebrity gossip news is typically pretty juicy. You hear about all of the sordid details of a love affair gone awry or an ugly feud between two celebrities, and it gives you something to talk about with other people and it almost makes you feel privy to something that should be a secret.
The fact of the matter is that it should be a secret, as all of our private lives should be a secret. One of the things you most often hear about is that many of the rumors about celebrities are untrue, but even when that is revealed, many people still associate the celebrity with the rumor, and that person has to live with that forever.
Celebrity gossip news appeals to most people, I think, because we do want to know about people and gossip can either show us that they are regular people like us, or it can knock them off of their pedestal and give them a proper lesson in humility. Either way you look at it, even when the gossip is true, all it does is prove that celebrities, like the rest of us, are human and make mistakes.
One of the greatest analogies about gossip that I have ever heard came from the movie ìDoubt.î Philip Seymour Hoffman plays a priest, and in his sermon, he is telling the story of a young woman that goes to confession and said that she has gossiped about another person, and wants to know if that is a sin.
The old priest tells her that, for her penance, she must go home, get on top of her roof with a pillow, cut it open, and empty all of the feathers from the roof. She does so, and comes back the next to tell the priest she has done what he asked.
The priest then tells her to go and gather up every feather that came from the pillow, and put it back in the case. The girl protests saying that it would be impossible, that the feathers went everywhere and are all over now. There is no way that she can find them all.
And that’s gossip, he old priest tells her.
While celebrity gossip news may be entertaining and intriguing in some cases for us, it is not necessarily a good thing. Our natural fascination with celebrities leads us to want to know more about them, but I think we should all remembers that they are people, too.
A plane crash. Survivors trapped on a mysterious, tropical island. Time travel, mysticism, and mysteries. Plotting, back stabbing and retribution. Such is the background of ABC’s LOST. The phenomenon of a television series hit airwaves in 2004, and has had a cult following ever since. Famous of for its lack of answers, the show lost a good deal of viewers after the initial two seasons, but maintains a devoted following to this day.
ABC’s LOST initially follows the survivors of Oceanic Flight 815 after it crashes on an island shrouded in mystery. The group is struggling to survive as they encounter nightly disappearances, polar bears, and a strange monster made of black smoke. As time goes on, they find a hatch buried into the ground, and find inside a man who was never on their flight. The man’s name is Desmond, and he is pushing a button every eight minutes in order to ìsave the world. Desmond abandons the hatch, leaving the survivors to continue the process.
The show takes a turn at this point in the series. The survivors find a man who claims his name is Henry Gale, but after a little bit of time, they discover that the man is instead Ben Linus, the leader of another group of island inhabitants known as The Others, and they are the ones who were taking people away from the group in the beginning. ABC’s LOST gets crazy when Linus escapes, and the survivors stop pushing the button, causing the hatch to implode in a burst of electromagnetic energy. In the meantime, key group members of the survivors are captured by the Others.
After weeks of beatings and near torture, the captured survivors find out that they are on an entirely separate island, and that these individuals are operating out of the old facilities of a group called The Dharma Initiative. No one is very clear on why the Others are there, but it is revealed that Ben was responsible for killing all of the former Dharma people, and that he feels he is tasked with ìprotecting the island, and is under the direction of a man named Jacob. ABC’s LOST becomes really exciting when a freighter appears off the coast, and the survivors believe they are saved. However, it is quickly revealed that the freighter is not there to save, but destroy them, as their leader is a former leader of the Others who is looking for vengeance.
Fortunately, the helicopter pilot of the freighter is uneasy with the situation, and despite the freighter itself being blown up, is able to help six of the survivors get off of the Island. Several years after the fact, they still have not told anyone in the world about what actually happened after the plane crash, or that there are other survivors still on the island. However, ABC’s LOST gets even crazier when another survivor comes back to the world named John Locke, and explains that if they don’t come back to the island, everyone they love there will be killed. Though it takes some coercion, and the death of the messenger, everyone eventually goes back.
During the time that they were gone, the rest of the survivors were enduring some crazy events. After they left, Ben and John had turned an archaic wheel in order to move the island and keep the other survivors safe. However, in the process, they had dislodged the island from time, and the inhabitants found themselves time traveling at a frequent rate, leading to some strange deaths. Locke is eventually able to stop the time traveling, but the island is at that point stuck in the 1970’s, so when the survivors that had left return, they too find themselves out of sync.
The story in ABC’s LOST becomes more and more convoluted, but the best thing you an do is watch it yourself. The story is even more complicated than it seems now, and is more than worth checking out.