How to exercise right

There are two different types of people in the world and these two camps are pretty firmly set in stone. You are either a fitness freak that does push ups for fun and thinks that a ten mile run is just a warm up. Then there are the rest of us. Us mere mortals for whom getting up to run to the fridge is enough exercise to get a sweat on and be breathing heavily for months afterwards. It may not be a good thing, but that is the sad state that many people are in in this day and age. 

Fortunately for all of us that are slightly, shall we say, larger than life, there are a good number of people who are not and are in good enough shape that they can be used as inspiration for everyone else to get into some semblance of shape. It turns out, that after doing some research you can break down getting fit into three main categories! 


Learning the exercises

You can be an absolute novice or someone who has been hitting up the gym for years, there are plenty of exercises you can do. To start with, you will need to do some cardio to initially lose any podge you may have residing around your midriff. Cardio can come in many forms and includes running, walking, cycling, rowing, climbing or basically anything else that gets you up and moving for an extended period of time. Once you build up a semblance of fitness it makes everything else a hell of a lot easier! So let’s assume that you have managed to lose some weight and things are starting to look up. Now you want to go for that killer six pack or get biceps as big as your head. This is where the weights element comes into play. If you are a newbie then you should start on lower weights as there is no point in risking injury and sooner than you know it you will be lifting the big heavy ones anyway! The key tips here are to remember to work all the muscles in your body and not just the glamour ones that people can see, and making sure you know what you are doing as if you don’t things could go quickly and badly wrong!


Eating the right foods

This is the area where many people fall down. They will go on a run or to the gym but they will come in and think that they have “earned that pizza” or tuck into a big tub of ice cream as a well done for working out. Things don’t work like this unfortunately and you will not see any gains if you still eat rubbish. The best thing to do is to ensure the majority of your food is low in calories and you get all of the vitamins and minerals you need. A good way to do this is to have a green smoothie every day as this will do all of the hard work for you and clean out your system whilst it is at it. There is nothing wrong with having the odd treat here or there bit you have to limit yourself. Portion sizes are key, and if you just ignore what goes into your body you will not be pleased with the results you get back from it!


Your own dedication

Without this you really will get nowhere. There is no point in being the type of person who will go to the gym once or twice and think that is enough. Those mornings where it is freezing cold and the last thing you want to do is drag yourself out of bed to run are the ones when you need to do it the most. If you aren’t dedicated to achieving your end goals then you will get nowhere in your attempts to improve yourself. Make a diet plan of which meals you are going to have each day and when you are able to treat yourself, get a friend on board so you have a gym or running partner. It doesn’t matter how you encourage yourself, you just have to do it. So get up and get active!  

Real football is the best and worst!

Let’s all sit back and think of the most stressful situations we have been in? What is it for you? Being chased around by a huge dog? Something more stereotypical such as exams and the pressure which come with them? Or are you like me and the thing that gets to you the most is sports. It doesn’t matter whether I am watching it, playing it or even talking about it sport is something that stresses me out no end. My team plays in Claret and Blue and kicks the original (and better all round so sorry to my American cousins) football around the pitch every Saturday at 3pm. You may have picked up on the fact that I am a fan of a team in the English Premier League and with this comes some rather unique stresses and strains. If I had to create a website to describe what watching the Irons is like every week it would probably be something along the lines of because, as you can probably guess, watching every week is akin to being in a pressure cooker!

For those of you who are unfamiliar with the premier league let me fill you in on a little bit of the history associated with the worlds greatest competition. Over the last ten or so years there were four teams that dominated the League and on occasion made it rather boring. This isn’t to say that there wasn’t the odd disruption of the big boys and their dominance (see Blackburn in 1997) but this was the general consensus. Every year one of them would win the league. Manchester United, Liverpool, Arsenal and Chelsea were the names at the top of the sheet each and every year and this became very boring very quickly. Thankfully things changed and they seem to have changed forever. First Manchester City got investment from what is rumoured to be the wealthiest family in the world, the one that rules over Dubai. This investment changed them overnight, and back in 2009 they made a bid on the last day of the transfer window in excess of £32 million pounds for, at the time one of the world’s best players, Robinho. They haven’t looked back since and at the time of writing they have one of the most expensively assembled teams in world football. This isn’t the end of the changes the league has experienced by a long way! This season a team who were nailed on for relegation have been flying at the top of the league, Manchester United, once the biggest club in the world, have continued treading water and occupying a league position way below that of which a club of their stature is used to. The whole thing has gone tipsy turvy and even those of us who have been watching football for years are clueless as to what is going to happen next.

This is what makes watching football in the Premier League so stressful. It’s the unpredictability. Normally if you had asked me the position in which the 20 teams in the league would finish I would have been able to present you with a league table where everyone would be within one or two places from where they would end up finishing when the curtain closed. Over the last two years I haven’t been able to do that so its a good job I am not inclined to gamble! Normally I know who West Ham will beat and who I don’t even need to bother turning the TV on for as I know we will be on the receiving end of a beating, but now I am clueless and I couldn’t be enjoying it more! The whole league is becoming a pressure cooker, ready to explode into life and showering us all in a new era of change. If you have any techniques which will help me to predict what is going to happen then please do tell me, but only if the end results are good for my team….. Stress affects us all in different ways and now you know what sets me off! If anyone is the same then I can only offer you m sincerest sympathies….

So You Want to Be a Fashion Merchandiser

I used to do some runway and commercial modeling. Long story short, it didn’t pan out. But at the time, I still wanted a career in the fashion industry. I loved so much about that world. Somehow, some way, I was going to realize that dream and make it big. If I wasn’t going to do it as a model, I would be the designer the girls were wearing. I had visions of putting on runway shows for New York’s Fashion Week some day. Yup, I decided that was the direction I would go. Everything happens for a reason. The reason I never made it as a model was because I was destined to be a great designer. I’d have celebrities imploring me to design their wedding dresses or ball gowns for the Oscars.

Lofty goals to say the least but you know what they say, if you don’t try you’ll never know…or something like that. In any event, I was back in New York City all over again and one of my first jobs on the road to acclaim was a merchandising coordinator for a nationwide department store chain. It was there that I learned the value of all of the tools of the trade. You know, the stuff that most people take for granted on a day-to-day basis. There are plenty of everyday household items that we all use, but models and stylists appreciate them on a whole new level because these things are the lifeblood of the industry. For instance, consider the hair dryer. You probably have one in your bathroom cabinet and think about it once or twice a week. For someone in my industry, it’s as important as a wrench to a plumber. They say a good craftsman never blames his tools, but good tools can help make the craftsman one of the most sought after in the industry. It’s that simple. So I gained a greater understanding of the importance of something as innocuous as a hair dryer and realized that consumers need a trusted resource that guided them to finding the best products, like the hair dryer. You’ll find websites like that offer reliable reviews and other important information about hair dryers. I wanted to become that reliable, to be that valuable resource to those who depended on good merchandise for their careers.

There was just one slight problem. I had no idea what a merchandiser actually did. I mean, there was a pretty standard definition of what the position entailed, the only issue was that it seems to entail everything all at once. I soon realized that the more people I spoke to about what my duties and responsibilities were, the more it changed. I was doing everything. I was working in retailing, I was involved in marketing, I was stocking shelves. I learned about design trends and was involved in the planning of merchandising strategies. It was a little overwhelming at first. I began to think that I had become the “go-to” girl for the tasks that others didn’t want to do or didn’t understand how to do. Believe me, there was a little bit of both. When you’re the low woman on the totem pole, poop rolls downhill, if you catch my drift.

But what soon began to dawn on me was the sheer amount of valuable information I was learning by just being there and getting my feet wet. I had my hand in so many different jobs and tasks that I was absorbing an incredible wealth of knowledge. I cannot tell you how thrilled and excited I was to be going there every morning, staying late every night. Immersing myself in the world that I loved, surrounded by it all.

So I guess what I’m saying here is this: if you were like me at one time and wanted a career in the fashion industry, get a gig as a merchandiser. It’s often hard to define and nebulous in its description.

And you don’t want it any other way. The more you do, the more you will learn. I highly recommend it.

How hard is it to be a girl?

In a world where the two different genders of male and female are growing apart as quickly as they are seemingly blending into one I am becoming not only increasingly confused at all of the different labels there are now (trans, pans, etc,) but I am also becoming more and more thankful that I was born a boy. Now this isn’t for any gender confused reason. It is purely because I don’t think I would be able to hack being a girl. They go through so much more stuff every single day when compared to their male counterparts that I think I would just give up and cry in a corner.

Let’s compare an average day. My day is simple. I awake to my espresso wake up call. I’ll roll out of bed and head to the bathroom to relieve myself and brush my teeth (occasionally both at the same time if I’m feeling talented.) After that I will jump in the shower for five or so minutes, run my hands through my hair and dry myself in about five seconds flat. Two minutes of blow drying my hair and I’m on to the tough choice of which outfit to wear. Every morning my thought process is something along the lines of “Right, there’s the jeans sorted now for the hard part. Do I want the white t-shirt or the blue one?” That is literally the hardest decision I have to make during my morning routine. I don’t know if that backs up the point I am trying to make our whether it just says more about my fashion sense but nevertheless it is still a very valid point for many men all around the world.

Now let’s take a look at a girl’s daily routine. It isn’t until you have a girlfriend that you start to pick up on a lot of the things I am about to list, but once you do you really start to notice just how much more effort is required. Firstly comes the early alarm. Apparently this is purposely set to ensure that there is enough time each morning to get ready. Who knew that this was an issue! Then comes the painfully long process of showering. I don’t know what they do in there and probably don’t want to but every female I have ever come across takes an absolute age when showering and God forbid if they need to wash their hair as well. You may as well pitch a tent because you’re in there for the long haul. After the shower comes the four hour process of drying the hair which is an understandable one as if this is not right the first time then it will have to be redone again and again so lets just all be thankful for this. Once the hair is dry then it’s finally time for the make up to be put on and as I’m sure both genders can testify this takes longer than it did for man to reach the moon.

Now I’m not being a kiss-arse here, but I think my girlfriend looks perfect without her makeup on, but nonetheless she insists on it even when we are just running to the shop on the corner of the road so it just become a part of life. I’ve been reliably informed that this is normally a self confidence thing and due to years of being told they should be pretty and look like the women in magazines every moment in the day if girls don’t do their face they don’t feel like themselves. It’s wrong I know but that is what years of pressure on half of the population of the earth will do for ya! Only once the make up is on and dry will it be time to pick the outfit, and apparently saying that girls should take the same approach as me and simply put on whatever nearest is a view that is frowned upon. Once this is all done it is finally time to go wherever it was you were heading, whether that be the shop on the corner of the road or on holiday.

Like I said. I’m glad I was born male. Well done girls. I couldn’t do it.