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How To Improve Your Relationship One Habit At A Time



Once you reach a certain point in life, a stark realization enters your awareness just as Sisyphus was cursed to push the rock ad infinitum, so are we when it comes to maintaining our health, our success, and our relationships. The last, I assume, holds the most weight, since interpersonal communication can easily degrade, passion can go stale in a matter of months, and inertia can slowly run a partnership to the ground. This short article might just as well be an antidote a guide on how to improve your relationship.

When it comes down to areas where we measure success on the long run, habits are usually the only mechanism thought which things either improve or degrade. So lets go over a couple of things that might enrich, and ultimately improve your relationship.

Things do pay attention to as a couple in order to improve your relationship

While some of the problems can be fixed on an individual level (as we shell discuss below), many patters of behavior can be addressed at the level of a couple. Here are some ideas for making effective changes in both habits and mindset.

Dont be full of expectations

No matter how good your
relationship is, you will never be grateful enough if you habitually form high
expectations. To accept the world for what it is can be a sign of maturity.

Young people nowadays are
often told not to settle so the formula for happiness is laid down wrong at
the very gate to adulthood. To form high expectations, and demand from others
radical change is a typical sign of immaturity. Relationships, believe it or
not, require a healthy degree of acceptance.

Tell each other exactly what you want of your relationship

While this advice runs in opposition to the one above, it is still framed appropriately in order to support a mature relationship. Suppose that you are unsatisfied with your significant other, and you demand change. More often than not, this change is not specified, and the request is therefore vague.


Counter this with surgical preciseness whenever you are stating your requests. Here is how it goes and how it helps you to improve your relationship.

Clinical psychologist and internet sensation Professor Jordan Peterson unpacks this wisdom during one of his earlier lectures. He says, and I am paraphrasing loosely here, that we must be specific with every request towards a partner.

Suppose you arrive home, and your girlfriend is not excited enough to come and say hello. If you need that in your life, and you are the type of person who complains, it is very likely that you will demand from her more attention, more aliveness, enthusiasm for the relationship

But as you might notice, these requests are vague. Instead, you want to be specific. You can say I am the type of person who is insecure and cannot be happy unless you come at the doorstep and hug me whenever I come back from work. Now this requires a fair degree of self-awareness, and Professor Peterson is obviously saying this in jest, but being specific gives your partner an opportunity to actually change their behavior.


But you have to be specific,
and the request has to be in the realm of what your partner can realistically
change about his or her behavior. Asking for more than what your partner is
willing to offer is a recipe for disaster, and another form of high

Exercise together at least once a week

Workout Together

Women, it seems, show greater affection towards their husbands if they engage in physical activity as a couple.

One study published in Health Psychology says that wives in ET (exercising together) group showed significant increases in engagement in affectionate behaviors compared to wives in UC (usual care) control group. The study examined couples who coped with prostate cancer, but the findings are interesting enough as a support for a more broader hypothesis.

There are numerous ways to go
about your exercise, and running might be the easiest one. You can also start a
workout program like Beachbody on Demand at home, and sweat together in your living room.

Consume entertainment together

Movies bring about an
avalanche of hypothetical situations about which you can discuss with your
partner. In this sense, they offer novelty, entertainment, and opportunity to
associate comfort time with your significant other. You can listen to music,
watch documentaries, or anything else that moves you and entertains you.

Nurture your intimacy to improve your relationship

Make it a habit to be
intimate. There is rarely an example where the catch 22 loop applies so
perfectly. You have to dance Tango in order to enjoy it, but you also have to
enjoy Tango in order to start dancing. Kick start the cycle, will ya!

You can also say nice things
to your partner, thus showing your affection and positive feelings towards one
another. There are many examples of sweet things to do for your girlfriend and the only thing you have to practice is being
comfortable enough to utter one phrase at a time.

Set a date night

Happy Couple

This may sound trivial, but
look back at the past year how many times did you get out as a couple,
dedicated only to one another for the night? If you are skeptical, just make
the damn arithmetic say you get out on a date once a month. Thats 12 times
every year. Now there is a number you can work with is it low, high, or just
about enough?

Things to do by yourself in order to improve your relationship

Remember, a good relationship
requires two whole individuals. If you are not content with yourself, the
chances are very high that you will not appreciate your partner. It takes
self-love before you can love someone else, right?

Enrich your social life outside of your relationship

This may sound
counter-intuitive. When partners diagnose a problem in their relationship, the
attention is always turned inwards. But two whole persons make up for a better
relationship, and our social circle plays a huge role in regards to our overall
fulfillment in life. Besides, it is always great to bring a fresh perspective.


With meditation you become more
aware of your emotions, and therefore start to communicate better with your
significant other. All it takes is 10 to 15 minutes every day and you will see
notable improvements.


Treat yourself better

Our most difficult problems
often have trivial enough roots like hunger, or lack of sleep. It is quite
insulting to tell this to a person, but once biological needs suppress rational
thinking, it is easy to miss the causal relationship. It is no wonder that
problems tend to lose their urgency once we take a good nap.

Stop analyzing every little thing

How To Improve Your Relationship

Our psychological problems are
often problems of living. So stop analyzing and start to lift yourself up one
good habit at a time. Emotional turbulence can cloud our judgment, and we can
easily become ignorant of the obvious. Analyzing wont help as the emotional
mind is easy to trick and self-deceive. Start changing your habits one by one.
The list above is fairly generous!

Adopt a hobby

If your relationship is under the spotlight for longer than necessary, you might start to see problems where there are none. Instead, find something else that you can do. Get yourself a hobby, and spend your time elsewhere. The head is a terrible place to be stuck into for long periods of time. Sometimes, the best way to improve your relationship is not to work on your relationship at all!

Work out to improve your relationship

Self-confidence is an
important factor in any relationship as most problems have roots in our own
personal insecurity. Working out, believe it or not, can greatly affect your
positive self-image, and in a sense reduce some of your obsessive, possessive
and insecure reflexes.

Conclusion how to improve your relationship

As you can see, there is plenty of opportunity to improve your relationship and actually move things the other way around. You just have to be persistent and become content with progress over the long run. Here is a brief recap of things that you can do as a couple in order to improve your relationship:

  • Dont form high expectations
  • Be specific with every request fro your partner
  • Exercise together at least once a week
  • Nurture your intimacy
  • Set a date night
  • Consume entertainment together

Things you can do by yourself:

  • Meditate
  • Enrich your social life
  • Work out
  • Adopt a hobby
  • Stop over-analyzing
  • Treat yourself better

Relationships move slowly one way or the other, so just like Sisyphus, you might have to push for quite a while before reaching the top of the hypothetical mountain. But sometimes, the climb upwards is more rewarding than the summit itself.

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5 Tips from a Dietician to Get Started with Plant-Based Eating




Whether you’re looking to make the move to a vegetarian or vegan diet, or just looking to add more plant-based foods into your diet that also may include animal-based proteins – we can all benefit from eating more plants. We get vitamins, minerals, fiber, and other nutrients from plant-based foods and research shows diets rich in these foods improves cardiovascular health, supports a healthy functioning immune system and good gut health, better controls blood sugar levels, and improves brain health!


With all these great health benefits, let’s talk through some simple tips for incorporating more plant-based eating into your diet:


Start small


If you’re new to plant-based eating, you’ve probably got some new habits to master. You’ll be modifying the way you grocery shop, plan, and cook and developing new habits and skills takes time. Rather than completely changing your diet all at once, set some small goals that will help you build toward your end goal.


For instance, you could have a Meatless Monday and eat all plant-based for one day of the week to start, or even just pick 1 meal to swap for now. Starting small will allow you to navigate your new habits and adjust as needed as you work to scale up.



Replace meat with a plant-based protein in a meal you already make


Rather than starting from scratch with new recipes, adopt meals you’ve already mastered to a plant-based version. For instance, instead of a beef hamburger or beef chili make a bean hamburger or bean based chili. Instead of an egg scramble, make a tofu scramble.


Plant-based proteins include lentils, beans, nuts, seeds, soy, tofu, tempeh, edamame, quinoa, nutritional yeast, and spirulina. Keep in mind there will be nutritional differences between an animal protein source and a plant-based protein source and you may need more of the plant-based protein in order to meet your protein needs.


Add more plants to your current meals


Along the same lines, instead of swapping the protein source, you can simply add more plants to your current meals alongside animal-based proteins. Add extra veggies to your pasta sauce, to scrambled eggs, on a sandwich, in a smoothie, soup, or in a casserole, on a pizza, in stir-fry, or in tacos.


Pre-prep plant-based snacks



Including more plants in your diet can be accomplished in a number of ways throughout the day. Make eating more plant-based easier by pre-cutting fruits and veggies that you can eat as a snack. Pre-cut bell peppers, cucumbers, mango, and pineapple. Dip veggie slices in hummus or a cashew-based dip.


Order a plant-based meal at a restaurant


Eating more plant-based doesn’t always have to mean cooking at home. Try a vegetarian or vegan restaurant or order a plant-based meal off the menu. Check out ethnic restaurants – many Indian dishes are plant-based. Thai, Indonesian, Chinese, Japanese, and Korean restaurants typically have plant-based dishes as well.




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How 3 Moms Use Life Time



Motherhood can be a challenging world: From work demands and kids’ schedules to household chores and other obligations, there’s a lot to juggle. However, some of the most critical items on that agenda include mom’s efforts to maintain her own health and wellness.

Physical activity, healthy eating, and stress management can often fall by the wayside amid the daily to-dos, but prioritizing them is not only essential for mom to stay healthy, happy, and strong, but it’s also a great opportunity to show kiddos the importance of cultivating healthy habits — while including them in your activities.

Get inspiration from these moms who use our spaces and offerings to support their family’s healthy way of life.

Kellie McLarney

Member at Life Time in Mount Laurel, N.J.

What is your favorite thing to do at Life Time?

Honestly, my favorite thing about being at Life Time is the community. It’s like my home; I feel so comfortable there. I love walking in and being greeted by Janelle at the front desk, then taking a yoga class taught by Jaime Marrero. We also really appreciate the Kids Academy team — they’re so great with children, and our kids truly enjoy all the staff there.

How do you and your family spend time together at Life Time?


My family enjoys going to the indoor pool to play and relax together. It’s always so warm, it feels almost as if we’re at a resort on vacation.

Do you have a Life Time “hack” you could share?

These days, it’s using a silicone insert inside my face mask. I don’t even feel it’s there during class!

What’s your go-to Life Time offering?

For sure the yoga classes. That’s when I get my me-time. My favorite is the FLOW format — I leave feeling refreshed and, of course, extra sweaty.

What does your ideal Mother’s Day look like this year?

We’re looking forward to spending the day together as a family at the Jersey Shore.

Idell Brown

Member at Life Time in Florham Park, N.J.


What is your favorite thing to do at Life Time?

My favorite way to work out at Life Time is in the small-group training classes or with a personal trainer. I thrive on working out in a group setting — a little competition never hurt anyone!

How do you and your family spend time together at Life Time?

Family time for us is typically spent at the pool. Lately, after my youngest son finishes his swim class, we’ll have lunch before enjoying family swim for about an hour. I’m sure when the outdoor pool opens for the season that will end up becoming a full day at the pool!

Do you have a Life Time “hack” you could share?

As a full-time working mom of two boys with a husband who works six days a week, the Kids Academy is a genuine lifesaver. I typically take both boys to Kids Academy while I go to my Saturday morning Zumba class, which falls perfectly before naptime. After my class, we have a “picnic style” lunch in the back seats of our car with the trunk open, which the boys love doing now that the weather is getting warmer. On the drive back, both boys fall fast asleep.

What’s your go-to Life Time offering?

The Alpha and GTX classes. Both are an amazing way to work out with others, develop perfect form, and build strength and endurance.

What does your ideal Mother’s Day look like this year?

Mother’s Day for me will be sleeping in until 9 or 10 a.m. (my boys are up by 6:30 a.m.!) then having a spa day before meeting up with my family for an earlier dinner. I’m a firm believer in self-care.


Melissa Moore

Member at Life Time in Peoria, Ariz.

Melissa Moore with her husband and daughter.

What is your favorite thing to do at Life Time?

I love taking the barre and yoga group fitness classes, particularly the SURRENDER format for yoga. The instructors are professional, motivating, and always have great high energy.

How do you and your family spend time together at Life Time?

Most days we drop our daughter, Zoe, off at the Kids Academy. While she’s there, I like to take a barre class and then sit in the whirlpool. On Sundays, we all swim together in either the indoor or outdoor pools.

Do you have a Life Time “hack” you could share?

Always sign up for a class even if it looks full and you get added to the waitlist. Nine times out of 10, I end up making it into the class because of cancellations or no-shows.

What’s your go-to Life Time offering?

The barre and yoga group fitness classes. I love the barre classes in particular because I can get in a great full-body workout in just an hour. I also enjoy getting a massage at the LifeSpa.


What does your ideal Mother’s Day look like this year?

A day of relaxation at the spa — totally unplugged!

The post How 3 Moms Use Life Time appeared first on Experience Life.

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How to Get Razor-Sharp Abs



Most guys will tackle their abdominal training with a few sets of sit-ups or some version of crunches. Don’t get me wrong, this is a great start – but if the sides of your waist are soft and covered with fat, crunches may not be enough. Of course, your calorie intake needs to be in control and your diet has to be clean, and you must boost your cardio to drop body fat – but to carve hardness into the sides of your waist, you must target these weaker areas of your abdomen. Lying windshield wipers tighten and strengthen the major muscles on the sides of your waist and the lower part of the abdomen. A few months of lying windshield wipers and a good diet will eliminate any hint of love handles and replace them with razor-sharp abs.

Muscles Used in Lying Windshield Wipers

There are two major muscles and two deeper muscles that are responsible for maintaining the lateral boundaries of your abdomen. The external oblique muscle is the more superficial of the two muscles. This muscle begins on the lower ribs and extends to the hip bones. Small bundles of muscle fibers connect from lateral to medial, in the same direction that your fingers would point if you were to put your hands in your pockets.

When both left and right sides of the external oblique muscles work together, they flex the trunk and move the head toward the feet. When working one side at a time, the muscle flexes the trunk to the opposite side. For example, the right side of the external oblique strongly contracts when you bend or twist to the left side.

The second important muscle is the internal oblique muscle. It sits just deep to the external oblique muscle. The fibers of the internal oblique run around the side of the trunk at right angles to the external oblique muscle, fanning out from the origins and running toward the head (superiorly). It attaches on the lowest three or four ribs, where it becomes continuous with the internal intercostal muscles (respiratory muscles of the rib cage).

Similar to the external oblique muscle, the internal oblique flexes the trunk at the waist and moves the head toward the feet, if both left and right portions contract together. However, unlike the external oblique, if you twist to the right, the right side is most active.

Two other muscles act as abdomen stabilizers during lying windshield wipers. The transversus abdominis muscle helps to pull your abdomen inward. It is the deepest abdominal muscle, beginning on the inner surfaces of the inferior five to six costal cartilages of the ribs, the posterior side of the vertebral column, and also from the iliac crest region of the hip.

The second stabilizer is the iliopsoas muscle. This is a posterior abdominal muscle that consists of two fused muscles. The psoas major is a long and thick muscle that lies beside the thoracic and lumbar vertebral column. The iliacus muscle is a large triangular muscle overlaying the iliac bones of the hip and it lies along the lateral side of the psoas major. The fibers of the iliacus and psoas major combine into a single tendon that attaches near the head of the femur (thigh) bone. The iliopsoas is the most powerful flexor of the thigh at the hip joint. This muscle assists in stabilizing the femur of the thigh during each repetition of windshield wipers.


Windshield Wipers

This exercise targets both the internal and external oblique muscles.


  1. Place a flat bench under a Smith machine. Lie on the bench in a supine position (face upward). Place the bar at arms’ length above your face and grasp the bar. Your hands are here solely to stabilize your upper body and to prevent you from falling off the bench as you are twisting to one side or the other.


  1. Put both feet together. Extend your legs and hips so that there is a straight line from your torso down your legs.


  1. Inhale and raise your legs and hips so that they are perpendicular to your torso, with the toes pointed directly upward, straight toward the ceiling.


  1. Lower the legs to one side (e.g., to the left), until they are at an angle of about 45 degrees to the floor. Exhale as you lower your legs and try to pull in your abdomen as much as possible.


  1. Reverse the movement and inhale as you are coming up to the perpendicular point. Do not stop there. Go slowly to the other side until you have reached an angle of about 45 degrees. Exhale and pull in your abdomen on the way down. Continue to move your legs back and forth like a windshield wiper. Start with 10 reps to each side, but work up to 30. Three sets should be enough to make it feel like a tiger has been gnawing at your sides.


You should make an effort to pull the transversus in as much as possible as the legs are going downward. A strong transversus abdominis also acts to stabilize your spine and pelvis when you are lifting heavy weights in squats or rows. The iliopsoas largely acts to stabilize the thigh. You should not go down lower than 45 degrees on each side, because this puts too much strain on the lumbar vertebral discs and any further abdominal benefit is simply not worth risking any injury to your back. You will find that this smaller range of motion will get the job done, without any back risk.



Hubley-Kozey CL, Hanada EY, Gordon S, Kozey J and McKeon M. Differences in abdominal muscle activation patterns of younger and older adults performing an asymmetric leg-loading task. PM R, 1: 1004-1013, 2009.

McGill, SM, Karpowicz, A (2009). Exercises for spine stabilization: motion/motor patterns, stability progressions, and clinical technique. Arch Phys Med Rehab, 90, 118-126.

Parfrey, KC, Docherty, D, Workman, RC, & Behm, DG (2008). The effects of different sit- and curl-up positions on activation of abdominal and hip flexor musculature. Appl Physiol Nutr Metab, 33, 888-895.

Teyhen DS, Williamson JN, Carlson NH, Suttles ST, O'Laughlin SJ, Whittaker JL, Goffar SL and Childs JD. Ultrasound characteristics of the deep abdominal muscles during the active straight leg raise test. Arch Phys Med Rehab, 90: 761-767, 2009.

Teyhen, DS, Rieger, JL, Westrick, RB, Miller, AC, Molloy, JM, & Childs, JD (2008). Changes in deep abdominal muscle thickness during common trunk-strengthening exercises using ultrasound imaging. J Orthop Sports Phys Ther, 38, 596-605.


Workman, JC, Docherty, D, Parfrey, KC, & Behm, DG (2008). Influence of pelvis position on the activation of abdominal and hip flexor muscles. J Strength Cond Res, 22, 1563-1569.

The post How to Get Razor-Sharp Abs appeared first on FitnessRX for Men.

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