Wellness Wednesday

Hi guys and welcome to todays Wellness Wednesday’s. Today I’m going to be updating you guys on a little experiment I’ve been working on for the past couple days. I chose to post this for todays wellness Wednesday because it’s a little hobby of mine that I enjoy doing/researching in my spare time. I can’t stress enough the importance of having a healthy outlet in your life to focus on. We all have work, homework, obligations, and expectations to attend to, which can quickly become over whelming if you’re not giving yourself time to relax. For me, I love anything nutrition, health, fitness, and food related. I could spend hours looking up healthy recipes and watching workouts on youtube and cookings, etc. This is what I look forward to at the end on my day during my leisure time. So, again, I encourage everyone to find something they love and to make time for that thing.

So, following my rant, I have been experimenting with growing my own kefir. For anyone who isn’t familiar with kefir, it is a fermented milk that is made from kefir grains which is a good bacteria. I tried store bought kefir for the first time recently and really loved it. It is super nutritious and great for the gut as it is a probiotic with protein, fiber, etc. I really enjoy the taste, though I wouldn’t be surprised if it’s not for everyone. It’s comparable to a thinner and a bit more tangy greek yogurt. I know this doesn’t sound super appetizing, but I really dig it.

So last week I ordered the kefir grains online. Basically, the more kefir you make, the more grains you acquire and people sell their grains online. The grains are white and kind of look like cottage cheese in a way. Keep in mind, that they are living bacteria so you have to take care of them, especially after being shipped.

The first step is to add the grains to whole milk. Interestingly, the grains/bacteria, feed off of the lactose and sugar in the milk, also making it almost completely lactose free. I then covered the milk with a paper towel, putting a band around the lid and left it in my kitchen for about 24 hours. Not going to lie, it was a bit off-putting to think bout drinking a form of milk that has been left sitting out, but I forced myself to trust the process.

So after 24 hours, it begins to separate and thats when you have to strain the grains from the milk using a fine strainer. And remaining with the grains you can immediately begin a new batch by adding them into new whole milk.

So my first batch was done and I was a bit caught off guard by the initial taste. My kefir comparing to the store bought kefir was much more tangy and not as think/creamy. I looked up how to maybe fix this and someone recommended letting it sit out for an addition 24 hours to reduce the tanginess, but so far it doesn’t seem much different. I still plan on using my kefir for the nutritional benefits by maybe adding it to a smoothie or adding fruit so make it’s more pleasant.

I am going to alter my next batch a bit to see if there is any difference (fingers crossed). So, though my little experiment hasn’t been super successful, I’ve still had fun working on it and will continue trying. Thanks for reading!

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Tasty Tuesday🥗

Hey guys and welcome to today’s Tasty Tuesday! I can’t believe this is only my second post, but I hope you guys enjoy!

So today I started my day off with my go-to favorite breakfast: A fried egg on a slice of whole wheat toast and a peach flavored yogurt. I’m usually not into having a runny egg yolk but recently it’s been my favorite thing to eat, I can’t believe what I’ve been missing out on for all this time. Also, yogurt has been becoming a staple in my diet. I’m a big fan of the “Light and Fit” brand. It works well with my college budget and is one of the healthier options offered.

I was in a rush today packing my lunch so I had a quick and easy, yet very good turkey and Swiss cheese sandwich on whole wheat bread with some celery and carrots. Honestly, nothing is more satisfying than a nice crisp piece of celery. It sounds weird, and not too appetizing but celery also works really well with peanut butter for some extra protein. This also has been an easy go to snack for me lately.

For a pre workout snack, and fix to my chocolate craving, I had a protein bar. I have a Costco size box of the “Pure Protein” brand. A little tip that helps me is whenever I have a mid day chocolate craving, instead of getting a candy or something, I will usually have a protein bar and it does the trick. Depending on the type they usually have less sugar, carbs, and fat AND much more protein than a candy bar, so that’s a win in my book. I also really like “Luna” bars and “RX” bars; another two really good protein bars to fulfill your sweet tooth.

For dinner, I had zoodles (zucchini noodles) with the rest of my moms homemade meat sauce and a baked potato. I love pasta, but I also love greens, so I think zoodles are a great compromise. Also, a super easy side for any dinner is a potato. I just poke some holes in the potato with a fork, pop it in the microwave for 5-6 minutes, add a little butter with salt and pepper and there ya go, easy and delicious.

Lastly, I finished off my night with the left over banana peanut butter ice cream I made the other day. I added a couple frozen bananas, coconut milk, cocoa powder, peanut butter, and a tablespoon of maple syrup to my blender and it was done. This was honestly really, really good and a great way to end my night with something sweet which is always a must.

That concludes my full day of eating for this fabulous Tuesday. I hope you guys enjoy and have a great rest of your week!

Reading response (Writing on the Web)

In todays society, education had expanded beyond a dictionary and some book. Students today have more resources to benefit their education than ever before; however, the only problem is that these resources aren’t being fully taken advantage of. The web has an infinite amount of information on just about everything. I guarantee that you could ask google just about any question and there will still be some sort of relevant web result. This put people, more specifically students or learners in general, at a great advantage, IF ONLY we were all educated enough to maneuver how it works.

Anyone can do a google search, which is a reliable tool today, but this ability is just barely skimming the surface of what else technology is capable of, but for most, this is all we know. We are growing parallel to technology, but in order to keep up, we must be understanding along side it. I have found myself falling behind in the race between my educational development and technological development. Of all my years of schooling, being a junior in college, I have taken 2 or 3 classes that have strengthen my ability to use technology to my advantage. And now, even that information from middle school is being recycled out because who needs to know everything about Microsoft word when I use Google Drive anyways.

It is the responsibility of educators to keep student up to date with technology because it is such a primary resource and tool that is used. It is important that learners have some source of incoming knowledge on how to actively use technology to their greatest advantage. Times are definitely changing and technology is a very prominent component in todays society. When broken down simply, it’s like emphasizing the importance in having the ability to read so that you can learn from books. If you can’t read, you can’t gain any knowledge from anything written and in turn struggle with day to day tasks. Here, in todays society, if you can’t work technology, well then you can’t capture the information that the web has to offer, and again, in turn struggling with staying up to date. Comparing the importance of reading to the ability to use technology seems a bit blown out of proportion, but really it is true.

This semester alone, I have been exposed to more technology in the class room than I ever have been before. I must admit that this was very intimidating at first, but that just goes to show my lack of ability that I should have been getting all along. This is something that should be taught and practiced in the classrooms. I understand that this is still new to us and people are still adjusting to this change, but it is only going to become more prominent in our day to day lives. So many people are already so behind in their ability to work technology, so it is important that we start practicing now. There is so much potential and information to be offered that is unfortunately going unnoticed.

This is something that school systems should be working towards, not taking away. I know some teachers and/or professors that don’t allow any sort of technology in the classroom whether it be a phone, computer, etc. And though I do understand the arguments that stand for technology being a distraction, I think here that the good out weighs the bad. It’s important to look at the bigger picture and to prioritize our options. It is harmful to a persons education to take away such an important resource in todays world. In my experience, for example, I find it very helpful when I’m in Spanish class and can use my phone or laptop to looks up a word. One, this is more time efficient than to look up a word in a dictionary. And two, I benefit from getting the word I needed so I will know it for future reference opposed to just struggling around it.

Technology is not going anywhere. There is no sense in re-enforcing the use and importance of a dictionary because there is now something better being offered. I think it should be a newly set goal and standard for teachers, whether it be elementary school or college, to prioritize the development of technology for education.

Fitness Friday #2!!

Hello everyone,

I hope everyone was able to get outside a bit and enjoy this beautiful fall day we had today. Days like this are perfect for getting active, it’s not too hot, not too cold. One of my favorite things to do during the fall is hike and enjoy this weather while it lasts. Anyways, that was my rant and now I’m going to continue on to this Fitness Friday!

So today was abs day and lately I’ve been trying out some new routines. When I find that I’m not getting sore the next day I know it’s time to switch things up. So, recently I broke outside my comfort zone and have been doing some short TRX Band circuits. For anyone who doesn’t know what a TRX band is I’ve attached a photo below. This is a new addition to the school gym and I wanted to give them a try. I will admit that it didn’t take long for me to develop a love/hate relationship with them but I know I’ll be feeling it tomorrow which ultimately is the goal.

So, after doing some research I found a few exercises. I wouldn’t recommend these if you’re just beginning to intrude the gym or just starting to training abs. I also find that these ab exercises are most effectively done with lower reps. When exercises muscle group, it’s important to listen to your body and to make sure you’re not pushing yourself too hard because this may lead to injury. So, on that note, here is what I did today.

I started with a 10 minute warm up on the elliptical.

Following that I did a 10 minutes run/jog on the treadmill. I set the incline to 1.5 and vary the speed between 5.5 and 8. Before focusing on a specific muscle group I like to get some cardio and start a solid sweat.

After that, I started with a short circuit using the TRX bands. To start my first exercise I adjusted the bands to about hip level. I then got on my knees and gripped the bands while bringing my arms out straight as far as I could go and then bring it back. For a better visual, it looks like a super man pose going forward and back. I did this for 40 seconds and followed with a 20 second rest.

Next, I fastened my feet into the loops and did mountain climbers. I hold myself up with my hands on the ground, elbows locked, and then alternate bringing each knee to my chest. This is basically just a more advanced version of normal mountain climbers. I also did this for 40 seconds with a 20 second rest.

Next, I did a similar exercise. Feet are still fastened through the loops and hands are still on the ground with elbows locked, but here I kept my legs together and would raise my hips up as far as I could, and then back down. So basically you just go up and down from a flat plank position to lifting your hips up to look like an upside-down “V”. It’s like folding your body up and down. Again, I did this for 40 seconds with a 20 second break.

Lastly, I held a 40 second plank with my legs still in the TRX bands. This is really just an intensified plank and makes for a much greater challenge. This too was 40 seconds.

I did this circuit twice and in between I did 5 minutes straight of alternating a bunch of random abs. I can ‘t guarantee that this approach to doing abs would work for everyone because there are no breaks, but I find it works well for me. To give you guys an idea of some of the abs I do here is a list.

  • crunches
  • leg lifts
  • Russian twist
  • scissor kicks
  • side planks
  • bicycle crunches
  • side to side heal touches
  • etc

I will have my stop watch on and do one of these exercises for 30 seconds and the switch right into another for the next 30 seconds and so on… There is no definite routine here, just whatever comes to mind first.

There is what I did for todays Fitness Friday and I hope you enjoy!

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Reading response

Troy Hicks: A Conversation About Digital Writing, is an article supporting the use of digital writing. Digital writing is any form of writing, whether it be for education, story telling, entertainment, etc, that is created and shared digitally. Troy Hicks argues that teachers should be more open to this idea. He supports this with the understanding that though many forms of digital technology are intimidating to us simply because we are unfamiliar with them, doesn’t mean they should be neglected. In modern day we must be versatile in exposing ourselves to new things that we could benefit from. I agree with this argument that Hicks makes, directing his focus towards educators.

In life, you will always be able to come up with a reason to not do something you may be hesitant towards, which is completely natural. We are humans, we like to ease ourselves out of our comfort zones and not simply through ourselves in unfamiliar situations. Instinctively, this is dangerous, so that is why we must understand and go against our natural reaction to neglect the things we don’t know because they could potentially benefit us.

For example, I appreciate that this class, EDU 106, exposed me to the world of digital writing, or more specifically here, blogging. Though I was very in-confident in my ability to maneuver and accomplish assignments, I have been learning through discovery and trial and error. With some time and effort, I figured out how to become apart of the digital writing community. This is exactly what we need to do in order to become more versatile and educated. We must experiment and learn from failure in order to grow.

Millennial, people of my age, are turned off by the suggestion of using digital writing even though we have basically grown up with full exposure to technology. However, this feeling is only holding us back. Trust me, I’m pretty old fashion and do appreciate the good ole pencil and paper technique, but I’m also eager to find all my options. I want to find a way in which I can tell my story or write my thought most effectively. Technology allows us to include more elements than just a simple piece of paper could do. We can use images, sounds, animations, theme, etc, with the use of technology for our writing. If the passion is there behind what it is you want to say, you will want to express it in every effective way possible which include stimulating your readers senses.

Technology and internet allows for a infinite number of ways that we can use digital writing. Additionally, there is no right or wrong answer as long as you’re conveying your meaning effectively. I think we have so much potential at our finger tips that is being neglected because we are scared or even too lazy to try. But this is me trying, and also wanting to go beyond this, here, to perhaps expand and fully be able to satisfy my meaning.

Balance!!!

REMINDER: Balance is one of the most important aspects to living a healthy life style. Enjoy life as it comes and don’t pass up on the things that do make you happy, even greasy, cheesey things. Today I endulged in a 1/4 lb fried mozzarella stick at The Big E. Obviously, this is extremely unhealthy, but it only comes around once a year and you must remember to treat yourself. It’s just as important to fuel your body as it is to fuel your mind.

Following this, I am NOT going to “punish myself” tomorrow to make up for it. I also have no regrets after having a day filled with fair food. In order to keep consistency, you must give yourself some slack. So don’t deprive yourself of everything you enjoy all the time because it’ll only result in fizzling out faster.

That was my littler personal reminder of the day and also 10/10 on this giant mozzarella stick, I highly suggest it for the cheese lovers out there.

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