Inspiration #013469 Nature loves courage.


"Nature loves courage. 

You make the commitment and nature will respond to that commitment by removing impossible obstacles. 

Dream the impossible dream and the world will not grind you under, it will lift you up. 

This is the trick. 


This is what all these teachers and philosophers who really counted, who really touched the alchemical gold, this is what they understood. 

This is the shamanic dance in the waterfall. This is how magic is done. 

By hurling yourself into the abyss and discovering it’s a feather bed."

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Disclaimer: This are not my words. I am not that poetic :) hence the quotation marks.

MapetiteNiche Commentary

Now that most of us are experiencing good weather, take advantage of these moments and divorce from your electronics. Step outside your home. Visit your local park. Go watch a little league or soccer game going on for free at the park. Granted they are no professionals, you'll be surprised by how entertaining and inspiring some of these local games are. You'll find yourself cheering for your home town's middle school kids even if you know no one on the field.



Travelling through Central Africa from Cameroon January 2014 Changes

As an avid traveler, I love it when countries/continents try to make travelling easier for tourists and citizens. The countries of central Africa/ CEEAC / Communauté des États de l’Afrique Centrale 

1. Angola
2.Burundi
3.Cameroon
4.Congo
5. Congo - DRC
6. Central Africa Republic
7.Gabon
8. Equatorial Guinea
9.Rwanda
10. Sao Tome and Principe
11. Tchad

have decide to come up with a solution to ease travel through  middle Africa especially by members of that zone.



6 of them (highlighted in Red on the list) already share a currency
 called the CFA so this comes as no surprise to me.

 Actually its overdue in my opinion.

From my understanding, as of January 1st 2014, you can travel within central Africa without a VISA/Passport IF
You have a national I.D stating proof of citizenship within  the countries of CEEAC

Again, am not clear on what kind of standard identification travelers will require because there are various options offered by the different countries involved

In the future, they plan on having a unilateral Central Africa Passport for CEEAC citezens

This is also a good strategic business move. Hopefully in the future we will experience growth in the economies of these countries due to this new ease of travel and accessibility.

Also, there have been talks, since 2012? and perhaps earlier about a CEEAC airline. Since most of the countries seem to be having a hard time running an airline program, I guess it will be better if its a collective effort?




Sources ****In French**** JournalduGabon  and AfricaInfo

Note: I'm still trying to find out the specific*requirements so the information on this post may change accordingly. A lot of the logistics have not been ironed out and presented to the public.

Drinking Coffee before Working Out

I love coffee.

I can't exactly remember when this love affair started but I first fell in love with Nescafe. It's still my number one concubine. But over the years, I have acquired many other lovers like the Kenya and Ethiopian teas and Starbucks.



When I started seeing more articles come out about drinking coffee before working out, I had to investigate.

I Love Coffee. I love Fitness. And its easy to see how I will be in favor of this union but I've never been one to taking the "short" route or cutting corners to achieve a goal. I understand very well the price we must all pay for trying to find short term gratifying solutions to long term problems.

So I was concerned. Is it really O.K to drink coffee before working out?

Positives
- Caffeine blocks your sensation to pain and fatigue. You will feel tired later into your workout instead of earlier

- As a stimulant, Caffeine allows you to be more alert and increases your heart beat.

 Mapetiteniche commentary : In a way this makes sense because if you read the label of some "energy boosting" pre-workout pills in the market, they are laced with high dosages of caffeine.
The trick is to drink it black = NO SUGAR

Negatives
- The side effects of having excess caffeine in your system include  headaches, dehydration, excessive palpitation of the heart which can lead to heart failure, tremors. Additional side effects may be based on your individual medical history.

In conclusion, drinking black coffee is better than getting your caffeine fix from energy drinks which are also laced with high dosages of Sugar or performance pills which have an alarming high dosage of caffeine.


___________________________________________

Will I start a new routine of drinking coffee before working out?

No.

I drink coffee to help me get alert to start my day. I don't need to schedule in an additional cup for the purposes of working out. Keep in mind as with any drugs, once your body becomes adjusted to a certain dosage of caffeine, it stops functioning as a stimulant.

6 MONTHS UPDATE Fitness Goals for 2013

Sometime in January, I made a silent resolution not to step foot into a gym for the whole year. I say silent because unlike my other goals which where written down in a  journal, at the beginning it was just a thought that crossed my mind.

The idea stemmed from an effort to cut back on spending and save $$$. I decided that with a more than above average experience in exercise and fitness, I was capable of coming up with workout routines that do not require a gym membership. When it comes to fitness, my goals have always been more about maintaining and sculpturing the body (thunder thighs!!!) I have now. As long as I wasn't gaining "fat weight", I was ok.

And I can say that after 5+ almost 6 months = 1/2 way through the year of doing just that, I am very happy with that decision. I do think that gym memberships are great for people who a new* to the world of fitness or for those looking for special amenities such as a swimming pool.

Running during winter at the beginning of the year was wonderful because the environment cooled your body as it got hot from exercise. Signing up and training for a half marathon was a way to stay motivated and have a goal to look forward to.Doing yoga and many other plyometrics exercises in tree shades during this current spring/summer heat is great for staying away from being sun burned.

Joining the instagram fitness community online has been great because  it serves as a vehicle for motivation, inspirations and a place to get ideas to spice up your home gym routines.

As much as  I get tempted every time I walk by a YMCA or any other gym facility. I will continue to train and exercise out side of those facilities till December. That is my goal. After that, I may return to the gym because I will need access of some of their equipments to attend some of my future fitness goals. Until then, I will keep visiting different parks and finding new places for outdoor works outs in Boston.


O.N.E Coconut Water - Review



I remember when coconut water became the new popular "health" drink. It became even more popular when Rihanna endorsed it and became the product's spoke model.

I also remember thinking.....there's no way am trying that drink. There's no way they are going to be able to reproduce the fresh and cool taste of the water from a real coconut.
 I thought it was going to a be sugary artificial product.

......Until I bought and tried the drink yesterday for the first time......



I was pleasantly surprised at how much it tasted like the real deal. It tasted fresh.

 I could not taste any additional "artificial" ingredient to it.

I used it to make a strawberry smoothie and it made it taste more delicious than when I use regular water.

My people who like coconut water and garri will not be disappointed ^_^

What the Packaging Says about the product

  • 100% coconut water
  • Ingredients = Coconut water
  • No Fat
  • No Cholesterol
  • No G.M.O.s
  • No Gluten
  • Gently Pasteurized
  • Not from Concentrated

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Pasteurizing is the act of heating up a product to kill bacteria or any harmful* elements in it. Unfortunately when you over heat a product, you may also get rid of the good ingredients. Therefor *gently pasteurized* means heat was used but in a low intensity.

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Will I recommend this product? 
YES! strictly on a basis of TASTE. If you are looking for a drink that taste exactly like what you get from a real life coconut, YES. However, am not a nutritionist so I cannot speak on whether the nutritional contents satisfy our daily requirements.

Any downside? Its not Cheap. The 1 Liter cost me $7 + dollars but... boy does the price make up for the taste and quality of product.


Dealing with Sore Feet



In addition to everything I'm currently doing, I started a new side job that involves a lot of standing and lifting. The resulting effect is me coming home at the end of every long day...lately..with sore and tired feet.


Typically when am sore from a workout, I rest and stretch it out. I also do a light workout the next day such as speed walking or jogging to get blood circulating in the tight muscles. This post is not about sore whole body muscles from a work out but just specifically about the feet. 





Here is my end of day routine 

1. Soak my feet in a bucket of warm water and salts for about 20 -30mins.

2. Make sure I have everything within reach from food, tv remote control , cellphone, computer and etc...you get the point...then elevate my feet above heart level for the rest of the night. I make a conscious effort not to be in a standing position till the next day.

3. Morning Yoga and other stretching exercises before work helps me stretch up tight muscles including those of the leg and feet



Other Options.


  • Having regular foot massages at the spa. (I've only been to the foot spa once in my life)

  • Having a Ice and Hot foot bath. Alternating between hot and cold for about 2 - 3 minute

  • Purchasing cushioning insoles/inserts for your shoes. Also the ideal time to buy work shoes is at the end of your work day when your feet are at their largest* size

  • Take more than one pair of shoes to work and rotate them every 3 hours or so

  • Weight management. For some, feet pain is associated not just with long hours standing but their body weight.


 I recommend making an effort to stay away from pain killers/pills because they are temporary solutions to the problem and do not address the issue, which is a change in habit, gears (shoes) and routine.

Hopefully over time my feet with get adjusted to my new schedule.

Goodluck

SELF MAGAZINE - 2013 Healthy Foods Awards




 I came across this on Self Magazine and decided to browse the  list to see if I was already consuming some of these winners. 

It was also a good way to learn about new healthy products. Eating the same meals all the time in the name of "staying healthy" can be quiet boring. Its good to find out whats out there and mix it up every now and then


Here is the "shopping" LIST.
Those highlighted are my favourites



Breakfast
  • Best Plain Yogurt: Stonyfield Organic Plain Fat Free Yogurt
  • Best Flavored Yogurt: Trader Joe's French Village Mixed Berry Nonfat Yogurt
  • Best Plain Greek Yogurt: Dannon Oikos Greek Nonfat Yogurt Plain
  • Best Flavored Greek Yogurt : Fage Total 0% Strawberry-Goji
  • Best Sweetened Cereal: Barbara's Multigrain Spoonfuls Original
  • Best Gluten-Free Cereal: Van's Honey Nut Crunch
  • Best Unsweetened Cereal: Trader Joe's Shredded Bite Size Wheats
  • Best Bagel: French Meadow Bakery Sprouted 16 Grain and Seed Bagel
  • Best Cream Cheese: Philadelphia Neufchâtel 1/3 Less Fat than Cream Cheese
  • Best English Muffin: Thomas' 100% Whole Wheat
  • Best Frozen Waffle: Van's 8 Whole Grains Multigrain
  • Best Instant Oatmeal: Earnest Eats Hot & Fit Cereal American Blend
  • Best Spread: Olivio Original
  • Best Turkey Bacon: Trader Joe's Uncured Turkey Bacon
  • Best Granola: Willamette Valley Granola Chips - Honey Nut
Lunch
  • Best Bread: Trader Joe's 100% Whole Grain Fiber Bread Multigrain
  • Best Gluten-Free Bread: Kinnikinnick Foods Soft Multigrain
  • Best Turkey Deli Slices: Boar's Head Ovengold Roasted Breast of Turkey
  • Best Swiss Cheese: Finlandia Light Swiss Deli Slices
  • Best Frozen Veg Meal: Amy's Asian Noodle Stir-Fry
  • Best Frozen Meat Meal: Healthy Choice Top Chef Café Steamers Chicken & Potatoes with Peach BBQ Sauce
  • Best Meat Soup: Progresso Reduced Sodium Chicken Noodle
Dinner
  • Best Pasta: 365 Everyday Value Organic Whole Wheat Penne Rigate
  • Best Gluten-Free Pasta: Jovial Gluten Free Brown Rice Fusilli
  • Best Pasta Sauce: Rao's Homemade Tomato Basil
  • Best Canned Soup: Health Valley Organic 40% Less Sodium Tomato Vegetable
  • Best Frozen Fries: 365 Everyday Value Crinkle Cut Sweet Potato Fries
  • Best Frozen Pizza: Amy's Rice Crust Spinach
  • Best Salad Dressing: Bolthouse Farms Classic Balsamic Vinaigrette
  • Best Veggie Burger: Amy’s Texas Veggie Burger
Desserts
  • Best Ice Cream: Breyer's 1/2 the Fat Cookies and Cream
  • Best Ice Cream Sandwich: Weight Watchers Snack Size Red Velvet
  • Best Frozen Yogurt: Edy's Slow Churned Yogurt Blends Chocolate Vanilla Swirl
  • Best Frozen Greek Yogurt: Treat Yoplait Greek Frozen Yogurt Honey Caramel Bars
  • Best Sorbet: Sharon's Sorbet Raspberry
  • Best Chocolate: Seattle Chocolates Extreme Dark Truffle Bar
  • Best Fruit Pop: Fruttare Mango
  • Best Cookie: Bear Naked Double Chocolate Soft-Baked Granola Cookies
  • Best Gluten-Free Cookie: Udi's Chocolate Chip Cookies
Snacks
  • Best Chewy Granola Bar: Cascadian Farm Oatmeal Raisin
  • Best Fitness Bar: Kind Nuts & Spices Dark Chocolate Nuts & Sea Salt
  • Best Crunchy Granola Bar: Clif Crunch Peanut Butter
  • Best Nuked Popcorn: Orville Redenbacher's Smart Pop Butter Popcorn
  • Best Popped Popcorn: Popcorn, Indiana Fit Sea Salt
  • Best Cracker: Triscuit Original
  • Best Gluten-Free Cracker: Van's Lots of Everything
  • Best Tortilla Chip: Organic Salba Smart Yellow Corn Tortilla Chips
  • Best Potato Chip: Kettle Brand Bakes Potato Chips Sour Cream & Onion
  • Best Hummus: Tribe Classic Hummus
  • Best Salsa: Muir Glen Medium Salsa
  • Best String Cheese: 365 Everyday Value Organic Light
  • Best Peanut Butter: 365 Everyday Value Creamy
  • Best Cheddar Cheese: Cabot Sharp Light
Drinks
  • Best Fruit Juice: Trader Joe's 100% Pure Florida Orange Juice
  • Best Fruit Smoothie (tie): Bolthouse Farms Berry Boost and Sambazon Supergreens with Kale + Ginger Superfood Smoothie
  • Best Flavored Water: Ayala's Herbal Water Ginger Lemon Peel
  • Best Iced Teas: Tea of a Kind Pomegranate Açai
  • Best Light Beer (tie): Heineken Light and Yuengling Light Lager

Summer 2013 Fitness Essentials




1. SUN BLOCK - no matter your skin tone or racial profile. 

2. HYDRATE preferable keep it simple with water instead of all those sugar filled drinks thats are being advertised as "healthy" sports drinks. LIARS. Keep it simple by purchasing a bottle and refill all day. Also helps with recycling instead of buying bottles of water all the time.

3. EYE SHADES: If exercising outside, find a tree or shade area to stay cool. Wear sunshades to minimize wrinkles or puffiness in the eyes. Or simple to keep the dust or other allergens aways

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