New Year’s Resolutions

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In a few hours from now across the wold people will start to count down to say goodbye to 2015 and welcome 2016. Usually with this a lot of people also have in the back of their heads a list of possible New Year’s resolutions. Some people on the other hand do not believe in having New Year’s resolutions because according to this group they are pointless and never kept. Well, I guess it depends on who you are and how serious you are about your own New Year’s resolutions

I agree, it is often hard to keep up those good intentions for a whole year, but there is nothing wrong with trying to stick at least with a few of those, and it not for the whole year ( which will be the ideal ) at least for a few months.

New Year’s resolution is a tradition where people make a “promise” to do an act of self-improvement or something nice to improve or better the life of someone else. You might even decide to give your support to a charity or a cause in your community. There are some popular New Year’s resolutions that pop up every year; eat healthier, lose weight, exercise, drink less, be positive, laugh more, get rid of old habits, stop smoking, learn a new language, save money, make small investments, become more organised, learn to say “no”, read more books, take a trip, spend quality time with friends and family, be more spiritual, and so the list goes on.

These are all good and well and great ideas. However, these end up on the list every year and often because somewhere between the beginning and the end of the year life happens and we get so tied up and busy that these wonderful intentions fall by the wayside and become nothing but good intentions.

I have decided to try a new strategy. I read this quote by Mark Terry, “When you trust yourself, you give room for possibilities.” and this is the only item I will have on my New Year’s resolution list; I am going to trust myself more, I am going to trust my instincts and my heart and with excitement will I wait to explore the possibilities it will bring. I have to believe that I am “qualified” enough to make good choices in life because if I do not believe in myself, in my heart and instincts, then I will always be too afraid to make any decisions and or take any chances.

Last thought. Everyone makes mistakes; it’s how we respond to correction that shows who we are and who we are willing to become. Mistakes are inevitable, but I am willing to give 2016 my best shot and again try to live my best possible life.

Remember to live your life to the fullest. We have but one life, but if we live it right, once is enough!

Happy New Year everyone and I hope that your 2016 will be the best one ever.

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My CN Tower Edge Walk Video

Hi everyone. Finally I have the video ready of my CN Tower Edge Walk. I did this in October 2015 when I was in Toronto. It was so much fun. This is officially Toronto’s tallest extreme urban adventure. This walk is done way up there on the roof of the CN Tower’s restaurant 356m/1,168ft above the ground! That’s right – way up there – and way out there!

[ http://www.edgewalkcntower.ca/ ]

In the company of people who support you

 

 

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I read this quote today, It is important to spend most of your time in the company of people who support you without meddling, who give you the space to grow, who applaud when you spread your wings in whatever way YOU want to fly. (Jonathan Lockwood Huie)

During this past year I have learned the true meaning of this statement and realised how deep the envy and bitterness of others can cut and how destructive people can really be. I have realised that it is best to surround oneself with the right people, not people who always say and do the right things just to please you, but people who  will dare to be real with you, all the time. When people speak into your life and correct you, they will do this not to hurt or degrade you but they will do it because first of all they have earned the right to do this and secondly and equally important, because they really care about and love you.

If people really care about you, understand and support the dreams and goals you have, then they will be there all the way, to give you the space you need to grow and to be there when you realise those dreams and goals.

Remember that live is a journey and not a destination. We are what we learn. Remember also that one of the toughest lesson you will learn in life is that not everybody wishes you well, so, choose your friends wisely and know who you can trust because they will be the ones that will walk with you as you journey through life. Remember also to cherish one another’s hopes and be kind to one another’s dreams, because this way we will all journey through life and rejoice in the small moments of victory along the way.

I hope that YOUR new year will be a year in which YOU will be surrounded by friends who really care and friends who value your life, dreams and goals as much as you do, and one last thought – to make a friend is to be a friend, so this begins with you.

Celebrate Healthy Habits this Festive Season

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Okay, it is holiday for most of us and that means time for festive celebrations. Let’s face it, none of us are super humans and all of us tend to let go a little bit during the holidays, but with that said, fact is, we can have fun without throwing away our healthy habits and if you don’t have healthy habits, there is no better time than now to learn a few.

The whole idea of choosing a healthy regime for this festive season can seem so daunting, but it does not have to be. Just make a few tweaks here and there and you’ll be fine. Just remember, the excess pounds won’t disappear along with the decorations in January and I mean, who wants to start all over in the New Year?

Well, let me share just some tips with you; stuff you can do to make the impact of this festive season on your waistline a little easier.

  • Getting started is usually an issue for many; so, keep a diary of log of your progress. And also, if you need a little more motivation, buy some walking shoes. Fact is, research have shown that you’re three times more likely to follow through if you start with small gestures such as these.
  • Also, share your weight loss goals and progress with your friends and family. Make it a positive life change and ask for their encouragement. You might also encourage someone else to follow in your footsteps to a healthier lifestyle.
  • Plan your meals ahead of time. That way you’re less likely to make an unhealthy last-minute food choice.
  • Don’t skip meals. This will cause your body to store the fat, making it harder to burn calories.
  • Always remember there are healthier ways to cook your food including: roasting, steaming, poaching, baking, braising and broiling. Not everything has to be fried !
  • Never confuse thirst with hunger. Drink a glass of water when you feel hungry to see if that’s what you’re really craving. Sometimes that will do the trick.
  • Grocery shopping. A nightmare for many, I know. Well, make sure you do your grocery shopping with a list, that way you’re less likely to stray into the processed foods section. Oh yes, and give yourself a time limit in which you have to do the shopping. More time on hand usually means more junk in your basket.
  • Be a smart shopper too. Beware of “fat-free” or “zero trans fats” foods as you could be trading fats for huge amounts of sugar or sodium. Read the label. Tip: Avoid anything with more than 4 grams of sugar, especially high-fructose corn syrup, per serving.
  • In the festive season we are also more likely to eat out more. So, when out at a restaurant, ask the waiter to hold the bread or chips that might come before or with your meal. Also opt for a salad or veggies to replace the unhealthy choices. Also, if at all possible make a salad your appetizer. Most starters are fried and come with unhealthy dips, sauces and deep friend ships…
  • Get active. Take a brisk walk before lunch or dinner. Not only will you get in some exercise, but research shows that you’re less likely to choose something unhealthy after a little movement.
  • Get moving. Invest in a pedometer or if you have a smart phone, get an app that can help you count your steps. These can help keep track of your steps. An adult should give on average 10,000 steps a day; if you don’t then you’re not moving enough. While we on this subject, take every opportunity to move around, even in small ways, and do things like taking the steps instead of the elevator of escalator. Also, park further away from the shops or your office so you can get that little extra walking in. You will be amazed at how much this will do for you and it will help you burn those calories.
  • Smaller plates equals smaller portions ( usually ). A healthy dinner should fit on an average plate. You may find that kid-sized plates are more appropriately sized to feed an adult too…
  • Sleep enough. Again, research showed that sleep deprivation alters levels of hormones in the body that regulate hunger, causing an increase in appetite. So substitute your calories with zzzzzzz’s.
  • Coffee anyone ? Remember, decaf coffee is a great low-calorie fluid when you’re having cravings and it is also a great source of antioxidants.
  • Opt for cinnamon instead of sugar. Use a dash of cinnamon to give fruits such as bananas and melons a richer dessert taste.
    Ditch the pop and bring out the water. You’ll be amazed by how much weight you drop by simply switching to water.
  • Are you an emotional eater ? Well, soups can be both filling and comforting. Try making a vegetable or bean soup with low-salt broth and store in portion-sized cups for later. It’s always handy to have when you feel like “something”.
  • Save time and money during the week by buying lean protein such as chicken breasts and beef mince in bulk. Then on a Sunday evening cook a week’s worth of lunch so you can have that ready or take to work. This way you will also stay away from the usually unhealthy menu at your work cafeteria or take-away outlet.
  • Always think lean. Try to have a little lean protein with each meal because protein tends to be more satisfying than carbs or fats.
  • Dump the junk. If you want to avoid temptation, make sure you clean out the fridge and the pantry of all unhealthy junk food and obviously refrain from buying it.
  • Make sure you do breakfast. People who eat breakfast have a better shot at losing and maintaining weight loss.
  • An apple a day don’t just keep the doctor away, it also keeps hunger away. Eat a fibre-filled apple every day or before a meal to help you feel full faster.
  • Energize plain-tasting proteins such as eggs or chicken with metabolism-boosting chili pepper sauce. Yah, spice up your life.
  • At the end of the rainbow there is maybe not a pot of gold, but there sure is a healthier you. Learn to make a rainbow of colours part of your daily diet. Have at least one brightly coloured fruit or vegetable in each meal, and, if at all possible, eat the skins, that’s where you’ll find a powerhouse of antioxidants.
  • Be smart at dinner. Try not to eat after 7 o’clock at night. You’re more likely to make unhealthy choices and less likely to sleep as well after a late meal.
  • Learn to say no. This one is tough, but it is a real test for your personal willpower. You don’t have to eat everything all the time. Remember, healthy choices are yours to make.

I really hope that these pointers will in some way help you to make better choices when enjoying your festivities and in the process help you keep off those unwanted kilograms and if not keep off, at least limit it.

With that said, wishing you all a blessed festive season, a Merry Christmas and a prosperous 2016. Let’s all make it a healthier and happier New Year !

Reflecting on 2015: A year On The Road

As the Christmas holiday will soon give way to a New Years, I am reminded that 2016 is right around the corner. This causes me to stop for a moment, and quietly reflect on 2015 as it nears its end.

For myself, in 2015, there has been a definite shift from the life I led prior to it, and as I “turned the pages” of my photos I am filled with so much gratitude for a year made up with so many wonderful moments. I am glad that the great moments once again outweighed the less great ones and I still feel blessed for the life that I have lived this year. If you look at this collage it reflects on yet another year on the road and it is embroidered with a golden thread called “friendship”.

It is impossible to capture all the moments, so these are just some, but they are all equally important to me as are the people adding colour to it and meaning to my life.

From the bottom of my heart, thank you to everyone who has been part of my life during this year. Thank you for your love and support and for believing in me when I and some others didn’t.

Those who fell by the wayside are history and belong to the past, and that is perfectly okay, because they made way for more meaningful and precious relationships. I have always believe in this – “Regardless, life goes on !”

Wishing you all a blessed Christmas and a prosperous New year. See you all on the road as we start yet a new chapter, 2016 and I will then continue living out my motto, “Making Miles and Moments Count”

2015-collage

Always celebrate what you can

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This past weekend I ran a half marathon in the north of Pretoria. The race was called The Wonderful Run organized by the Wonderpark Athletics Club.

When we arrived at the venue it was cloudy and I wondered if we were going to see some rain and indeed, about thirty minutes before the race had to start it also started to rain. The irony is that we were in the grip of a heat wave over the past few weeks, well, still are, and we desperately prayed for rain, and here we got it, minutes before we had to start the race. So now, do you say thank you for the rain you prayed for or do you complain because you have to now run in the rain.

Well, here is my take on it, my lesson learned. First of all it is important to remember that our happiness depends on the quality of our thoughts. Positivity is pretty much a choice and we have to train our minds to see what’s right, to recognize what’s good and often we also have to train our minds to identify these things. Often we get to a point in life where we have to realize that we are no longer able to change a situation, and then we are challenged to change the way we think about it. The first step is to celebrate what you can, every lesson learned, every laugh, the love you experienced along the way, the friendships you are blessed with, your health, your talents, your abilities and even your disabilities, because all these things make us who we are and has an impact on who we will become.

Accept that not every day will be good, but there will always be something good about every day.

We lined up for the race and then all of a sudden the rain stopped just after we started the race. That is a reason to celebrate, right there. But then the morning unfolds and we get to run shoulders with other runners on the route, share a chat or a chuckle and eventually everyone made it to the finish line and that is when the thought hit me, “..not every day will be good, but there will always be something good about every day.”

This day was also a sad day, nine years since dad’s passing and the feeling of loss is still so very present, but all the wonderful things I was able to celebrate on this day, health, the ability to run, friendships and just the passion of running and sharing the road with so many wonderful people somehow became the silver lining. I had to make a choice to see the wonderful things and I had to choose to make way for positivity.

Look at this photo up there, is this not more than enough reason to smile and be grateful? The gift of friendship. Priceless !

Don’t let unsupportive people drag you down

We live in a very competitive world and because of this for many it is about achieving and often this leads to overachieving. Fact is, we are not all in it to win it, and many of us are just in it to enjoy it.

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However, fact is, there will always be friends, family, even strangers and people on social media, will call you crazy for doing what it is you’re doing. They try their utmost to drag you down and most of the time they will do this when you try to do good and strive to stand out and do something different.

When people don’t get it, when they don’t understand what it is you’re doing or try to achieve, then leave it at that. They will ten to one never get it anyway. You really have two choices here, you can either let it get to you and drag you down, or you can use these negative comments help you to filter out those unwelcome elements; help you distinct between the unsupportive and supportive ones.  In the end, remember you were made not to fit in but to stand out and all you need to succeed in what you’re doing is a handful of peers who understand what you are about and who support you.

Often conflict of some sort cannot be avoided, so don’t be afraid to face it when it comes your way.  Don’t be discouraged: this is only a sign to you that you’re not conforming to the limits and boundaries that others have set for you. Life your life to the fullest and do what you do with passion and set your aim on succeeding and reaching the goals and dreams that you have set for yourself.

A last thought, we should also be aware of the role we are playing in the lives of those around us, to also guard against being negative towards them and what it is they are trying to accomplish. Instead of being negative and derailing them from what it is they are trying to achieve, let us instead be the stepping stones that will safely guide them to the other side and let us them all rejoice together, celebrating the things we have accomplished together.