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Expert Equipment Picks

This page is all about my personal picks for equipment, some of this equipment I already own and use in my home gym, and some is on my wish list.

I recently expanded my home gym by knocking out a wall in the basement so I have room to roam now.

Some recent additions to my home gym include a Bosu Ball, Bodylastics Resistance Bands, Hex Dumbells and the best exercise ball on the market.

I’m always on the lookout for new equipment and change my gym a lot based on what type of training I’m into.

Here are my exercise equipment picks for 2010…

Exercise Equipment Picks for 2010


Weight Bench
The Ironmaster Super Bench really is super. What appears to be an ordinary weight bench is actually a fully finctional home gym in disguise.

It’s kind of like Clark Kent – sure he looks unassuming until you see him flying around in his Super Man cape kicking bad guy butts all over town.

With add-on attachments like a pull-up tower, dip handles, cable tower, barbell adapter and dumbell stands the super bench can do it all, and for a fair price.


Elliptical Trainer
When my elliptical gives out (come on baby, give out) I’m getting the Sole e95 Elliptical. This is one sweet machine that compares with club models but costs thousands less.

Ab Machine
This exercise ball will kick ass all over any ab machine those late night TV idiots can dream up. As a bonus, it’s less expensive and more versatile!

Home Gym
I’m sick of the commercials, but that doesn’t change the fact that the Bowflex Revolution is one cool gym. Good for core and sport training in a small package – sweet.

Smith Machine
Yes, I own a Smith Machine already and would have bought the Body Solid Series 7 if I didn’t find a floor model closeout that I couldn’t pass on. The Body Solid dominates the wanna be “bushing” smith machines.

Treadmill
I’m planning to “break up” with my old treadmill and get the Sole F85 Treadmill. Why? How about wireless heart rate control, a long warranty, huge running area, great display and solid motor. Did I mention it folds too?

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Eating and Grilling Meat the Healthy Way

In recent years, with a healthy, alternative lifestyle taking hold of lifestyle publications in print and online, vegetarianism or being vegan has become vogue, giving meat a bad reputation. While it is true that meat is a source of fats, calories, and may even worsen certain medical conditions in an ill person, did you know that meat is actually necessary to the body?

And by necessary, this means that certain vitamins and proteins are only found in bulk when you eat meat. While other people may argue that you can get these same vitamins and minerals from vegetables and edible fungi, you will have to eat a huge amount of these things (maybe a kilo of tofu or several bushes of leafy greens) to get the same amount of nutrients that one small portion of meat can offer.

With all due respect to vegetarians, food choices are entirely personal choices—so if you’re one of those people who would like to keep eating meat if not for its unhealthy consequences, here’s a little workaround for you to get your nutritionist’s recommended amount of meat without having to be afraid of gaining weight or other health complications. It’s time you learn how to prepare, cook, and eat your meat in the healthiest way possible.

Choosing the Right Meat

First off, choose your meat carefully. When going to the supermarket or the butcher’s, it’s easy to get overwhelmed with the number of choices you have available. Add your butcher’s voice of many recommendations to this mix of confusion and you are sure to pick the fattest, most unhealthy cut of meat you could ever get.

Yes, it’s delicious all right, but it’s also bad for a myriad of bodily parts and functions. Don’t lose your head when buying meat—keep in mind that if you choose poultry (chicken), fish and other lean meat cuts such as the sirloin, flank or tenderloin, these are the fat-free areas of a beef/cow. In fact, if you’re picking poultry, choose the white-meat kind.

If you can verify what the beef was fed, try getting the grass-fed kind of beef or bison because as opposed to grain-fed meat, the grass-fed kind is lower in fat and offers higher amounts of omega-3, a nutrient which helps maintain your heart in healthy condition, and reduces heart disease. If you are hell bent on eating steak, then make sure the beef is also grass-fed. These kinds of meats, when kept in mind, will be ideal.

Meat Preparation

Next, learn to prepare your meat. Don’t just wash it and throw it in the frying pan! If you want to be healthy, you have to take the time and effort needed to keep that healthy lifestyle. With a pair of kitchen shears or scissors, trim off all visible fat from the meat. If using chicken, be sure to remove its fatty skin, every time.

Additionally, when preparing your meat for cooking, choose smaller portions to cook; about three ounces worth of meat, so that you can control your own fat intake.

Cooking the Meat

There are many ways to cook your meat, but there’s only a few ways you can do it healthily. If you think that frying your meat is a good, valid, healthy way to cook your meat—you are definitely wrong. Other than increasing the oil and fat level of your meat, you also run the risk of destroying its taste!

One way you can cook your chosen meat is to grill it. Whether it’s in a charcoal, electric, or pan-style grill, you can be sure that grilling your meat will mean less fat. Why is that? Why is it considered healthy? This is because the grill’s grooves, even the pan-style grill has these grooves, don’t just give that nice criss-cross pattern on the meat, but also cook and drain the fats away from the meat.

When you cook meat on a grill, notice how the meat flattens out, and that there’s a thick, viscous liquid that drips away from it? That’s the fat, not the juice or water content.

Here’s how to cook meat on a grill, pan-style or not. First, heat the grill up. If you’re using charcoals, build a nice, slow steady heat. With charcoal grills, you can tell it’s ready when the coals have a uniform white dusting of ash on it. If using an electric or pan-style grill, use a low setting to keep the heat at a steady but hot temperature.

Spray non-stick cooking spray on the grill if you have it, it’s a healthier option, or if you don’t have any you can rub the grates very, very lightly with oil. Use just enough to coat the grill so that the meat doesn’t stick, but not too much that it will bubble or stay thick. If you can, get peanut oil as it’s healthier or olive oil.

Sear the meat first (cook briefly in a very hot pan or grill) before cooking to retain all nutrients. Remember that when cooking lean meat only cook it until it’s rare, or medium rare.

You can also alternatively use a turbo or pressure cooker. This kind of cookware will lock your meat in heat and cook it in its own fat, reducing the added oil and evaporating all excess fat. Your meat will be cooked faster, healthier, with all its good water content or juices still intact.

There are also specialty cookware you can get online, on infomercials, or at relevant shops that cook all kinds of meat, even if it’s a fatty cut, in a way that will remove virtually all fats and reducing your calorie intake while still staying full and keeping all those nutrients in.

Finally, if you are on a budget and don’t have any sort of grill, you can try pan frying the meat in a non-stick pan without oil so it cooks in its own fatty oils. Before cooking the meat especially if it’s beef, make a light criss-cross pattern on the meat on both sides to open it up.

Fry in low to medium heat without any oil and watch closely unless it becomes too dry or burnt. You will see that the meat will cook on its own, without any need for additional oil, and the non-stick pan will provide the lubrication that oil usually gives, allowing you to eat your meat healthily while still on a budget.

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How To Find The Best Caterer For Your Event

It is the event that you have been waiting for your entire life. You have been waiting for this to happen since you were a little girl. And now that you are a woman and you have found the man of your dreams, your wish of becoming a bride has come true. You are going to be married soon and there are plenty of things to take care of. One of the most important things that is on your list is the caterer.

With your event being held in Perth, it is important that you find the best catering Perth has to offer. This is your wedding and so you need to make sure that you get the best. You just could not go for any catering Perth houses. It has just to be the best.

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So how do you choose the best caterer for your event?

You have to make sure that you do research. You can go online and search for the best caterer in the area. If you are not comfortable doing that, you can ask your friends or your family regarding the best caterers that they would know. They would happily help you with a few ideas and would give you names to consider.

There are things that you need to be specific about when you go with a caterer. You cannot just go to a caterer and tell them that you need food on a specific date. They will ask you what you want. So you have to be very specific. You have to know yourself and what you want on your special day.

You have to tell them of the date of your event as well as the time. This is so they can see if they have a schedule for you. These caterers are busy people and they handle various events everyday. So make sure that you check with them if they are available on the date and time of your wedding.

You also have to know your budget for the food. This is an important step. You should know just how much you are willing to spend on food. Telling the caterer this will help them know just how much they would be working on.

You should also inform the caterer about the number of guests to your event. You should also tell them if your wedding  has a particular theme or a particular type of cuisine that you prefer.

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Grilled to Perfection – Make the Perfect BBQ Steak

The perfect steak

Is there such thing as a perfect steak? Well, the answer’s pretty biased because everybody would claim that they cooked the perfect steak right in their backyard and not from a 5-star restaurant. Cooking and grilling steak is a favourite pastime for a lot of people simply because a lot of people love eating them, unless your religion forbids you to do so (which, I think,  is a terrible shame to miss out on a great thing like steak). Is it a real challenge to cook the perfect steak?

Grilling is serious business

Grilling is serious business because in order to cook the perfect steak, you need the right equipment. You have read right: EQUIPMENT. You have to know how you want to cook the perfect BBQ steak in order to preserve the juiciness and nutrients that go with it. You don’t want to lose precious calcium and protein that would prevent you from visiting medical centers like Elevate.com.au. If you think that grilling the perfect steak only requires you to put a thick slab of meat on the grill, you thought wrong.

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How to cook the perfect BBQ steak

Before cooking:

  1. Buy the best meat that you would not feel guilty on splurging on. If possible, go for dry-aged beef for a more concentrated flavour.
  2. When you take it out of the freezer, leave it out for 2 to 3 hours
  3. Wipe or pat the steak with paper towels to absorb moisture.
  4. Brush or rub some cooking oil on the steak for better crusting.

Preparing the grill:

  1. Clean the grill or plate. Make sure that there are no traces of rust or residues from past grills.
  2. You need two areas in your grill; high heat area and low heat area. You can do this by having two separate areas, or just lowering the heat on one area.
  3. Rub some oil on the grill.
  4. Pre-heat the grill.

As you cook:

  1. Put the steaks on your high heat area and cook each side for 3 to 5 minutes. If you are cooking boned parts, you may have to increase the time.
  2. Once you’re done with the high heat, move the steak to the low-heat area (or simply turn down the heat of your grill) and let it sit for 10 minutes. This should give you a medium type of steak.
  3. After removing it from the grill, place the steak in an aluminium foil and cover it. Let it sit for 5 minutes. This will give you a more tender meat, with more protein intact.
  4. You are done.

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