How’s the Weight Loss Process Going So Far For You?

Have you recently made a commitment to start exercising and eating healthier in an effort to lose weight? Not only is that a fantastic goal to set for yourself but you’ll find that when you stick with the weight loss process for a month or two, your entire outlook on life will begin to change and start to become much more positive.

You will find yourself inspired to exercise regularly as opposed to sitting on the couch watching TV with a soda in one hand and a bag of potato chips in the other. You will also want to prepare meals at home instead of going to the local fast food drive through and get a meal that is likely over 1,500 calories. You will do this because you know that eating this size of meal will not lead to weight loss but do the actual opposite, add on more weight.

If you’ve already tried to lose weight but haven’t had much success yet, don’t get down on yourself. Most people who attempt to tackle this issue have troubles and often need to start over a number of times before they get it right.

If this is the case don’t beat yourself up if you happen to encounter issues. You should actually be complemented since you’re not giving up and are willing to give it another go. Therefore if you’re reflecting on how the weight loss process is going so far, consider how you’re addressing these two specific areas – your daily nutrition and your exercise frequency.

Let’s look at both of these topics in more depth.

1) Daily Nutrition

Since weight gain is generally caused from eating or drinking excessively and far too frequently, the most important item of business you need to address is your daily nutrition. The problem most overweight folks have to deal with is not only the type of food they eat, but more importantly the portion size they consume at each sitting.

Our body only needs a certain amount of calories in order to function properly. If we take in more than our body needs and the excess is not burned off in some manner such as in the form of exercise, then all those extra calories are packed away somewhere on the body in the form of fat.

Instead of having to deal with this problem, it’s crucial you prepare food at home and more importantly serve appropriate portion sizes at all meals. You can still gain weight eating healthy food. Just because you grilled some chicken and made rice with beans doesn’t mean you can have four servings of each. That’s still going to total too many calories for one meal.

At first, portion size will take some getting used to especially if you habitually overeat at most meals. Simply put, if you eat to the point of being “stuffed”, you ate too much food. Try to stick with a curled-up hand sized portion on your plate. Drink 2-3 glasses of water throughout your entire meal time. Start before, continue during, and especially afterwards to aide with digestion.

Another benefit to preparing all your meals at home is that you have the liberty to cook a bit extra to ensure you have leftovers. These leftovers can now become travel lunches to take with you to work the next day or eat for dinner the following night. If you don’t have a good assortment of plastic travel containers put them on your shopping list as soon as possible. You can often find good deals on these containers at the dollar store, your local Walmart, or the supermarket.

Finally, don’t get the notion that since you’re eating healthy meals you can treat yourself afterwards to an edible reward such as a piece of cake or large bowl of ice cream. These choices right here will nullify all your healthy eating efforts and can limit your weight loss progress. Instead of that junk food, if you feel like you need a “reward” eat something healthy yet still sweet. Jello and frozen yogurt are two excellent alternatives to curb the sweet tooth, much better than donuts or pieces of pie.

2) Exercise Frequency

One of the best ways to burn off the excess from our bodies is to do some type of cardiovascular exercise. However unlike the nutritional aspect of the weight loss process, the exercise component comes with its own set of dangers you need to be aware of before you start any type of physical movement.

Depending on your current shape and/or if you have any medical conditions, you should seek clearance from your doctor prior to working out. Better safe than sorry right? Remember, an injury may prevent you from continuing with your workout regiment but depending on the severity it may also keep you from working at your job which can cause a whole bunch of other issues, particularly financial ones.

Once you’re cleared for exercise, take the slow but consistent approach. Remember, there is no rush to go full steam ahead. Some folks haven’t exercised in years so if that’s the case, don’t get out there and try to run 10 miles the first time you start to workout. Instead, take it from the absolute beginning and just start walking, then slowly week by week increase the duration and speed. Everyone is different so do what you feel comfortable with.

For instance, maybe the first week you walk 3-5 times a week for 30-45 minutes. The second week a little faster and now for an hour. The third week you warm up with a 30 minute walk then go into a slow jog for 15-30 minutes. The fourth week you walk for 15 minutes then run for 45 minutes, etc.

By slowly increasing the intensity of your workouts you give the body time to get used to this new healthy change along with developing the strength you’ll need to last longer and longer. You can also incorporate different activities to not only stay inspired but you’ll workout different muscle groups. In other words, you don’t have to stick with just walking and running.

How about learning a new sport like tennis or basketball, or possibly even rollerblading? You may be surprised to find there are likely leagues or groups that meet regularly near you and would love to have a new, energetic person join their group. Check what you can find by doing a search for what you’re interested in on Craigslist.com and Meetup.com.

Remember, your exercise regiment should be fun and inspirational. The more fun you have when working out, the less it will feel like actual work. There’s nothing wrong with smiling while you are sweating away all those unwanted pounds during this weight loss process. Make it enjoyable and you will marvel at how your entire mindset will change over the coming months. Give in an honest chance and be amazed at the results.

Schools Complain About the Lack of Budget Monies But Then Start School at a Bad Time

Okay so, it’s that time again, back to school, and just like any year 2012 is no different, however maybe it should be? Let’s talk.

The other day, I was at Starbucks and I was talking to a mother who was busy shuttling her kids around to school. She had brought them into the air-conditioning at Starbucks for a treat, and she noted to me that she has children in two different school districts, and one private school – a private high school, prep school for super smart students on their way to Ivy League schools. Basically, mom was the official school bus for her kids, and she laughed when I told her that, and admitted it was so.

Incidentally, this time of year in our Valley it is about 106 degrees Fahrenheit. We talked a little bit about how ridiculous it was to start school this month due to the high temperatures out here during the summer. She definitely agreed. Indeed, it seems as if the schools are complaining about a lack of budget money, and the school districts around here, well they’ve been laying-off teachers at a record rate to save on funds. They’ve even been laying-off teachers which as much as 13 years seniority, so you know things are bad.

What I don’t understand is why the schools are complaining about a lack of budget money, but starting schools when they have to run their air conditioners at nearly full blast. It takes money to run air-conditioning systems, and also takes a lot of money to run the diesel school buses when oil prices are around a $100 per barrel. At a time when our Valley is worried about rolling blackouts due to the unfortunate energy policy for California, it seems as if those in charge are unable to make a change.

If those who are running the administration of our school district, those in the California Board of Education, and those in Washington do not allow the local communities to govern their own affairs with regards to education, then there is no way they could ever run efficiently. In other parts of the country it may make sense to start school earlier because they will have heating costs in the wintertime, this would allow them to take a longer Christmas break.

The mother told me that the reason they started early was so they could get all of the information to the students in time for their standardized testing. This is exactly what happens when you have centralized control without regard to regional variation. I would submit to you that not only is this a problem with our education system, and the unfortunate costs incurred, but this centralized theory of management is also affecting our government at the state and federal levels. No wonder they are in debt. Please consider all this and think on it.

Procedures for Dealing With Disputes Between Landlords and Tenants Over Tenants’ Deposits

Disputes over tenants’ deposits have always been a thorny issue especially at the end of a tenancy. Disputes frequently arise when a tenant disagrees with a landlord or agent about the amount of the deposit withheld by the landlord. In the landlord’s opinion there may be damage to the property far in excess of fair wear and tear. The tenant may and more often than not, disagrees.

To help resolve issues between tenants and landlords and their agents, three schemes have been introduced and these are as follows:

1. DEPOSIT PROTECTION SERVICE (DPS)
This service is a government backed scheme, free to use by landlords and agents and is the scheme used by most letting agents.

All relevant information is registered online, inc. name and email addresses of tenants and the money forwarded to the DPS. The DPS on receipt of these monies forward an email to the tenant confirming their Deposit registration, and Repayment ID No. Tenants along with agents/landlords can log onto website and check details. The agent/landlord are required to issue to the tenant a copy of prescribed information and terms and conditions.

2. TENANCY DEPOSIT SCHEME. (TDS)

This scheme is often used by high street agents who pay to belong to this scheme. They retain the money in a client account, and should have client money protection insurance.
Unfortunately, not all agents have this insurance and some well known high street names have disappeared with deposit monies. So if your agent is using this scheme make sure he has insurance. Again, they must issue you a certificate with terms and conditions fully explained.

3. Mydeposits. This is an insurance based scheme used by individual landlords or agents. The money is kept by the landlord/agent who has to pay a fee to register the deposit. The money is retained by the landlord/agent and must be held in a client account. You must be issued with certificate with terms and conditions fully explained.

For all of the three schemes, the agent/landlord has a maximum of 14 days from receipt of deposit to notify and issue the relevant certificate to the tenant. In all scenarios the tenant must have a certificate, terms and conditions of scheme, and have been made aware of how to retrieve the deposit at the end of the tenancy, or what to do in event of a dispute. There are penalties to the landlord for not complying. They cannot issue a Section 21 notice for repossession, if they have not protected the deposit, and can also be fined up to 3 times the deposit for not complying with scheme rules.

At the end of the tenancy deposit monies must be returned within 14 days, or in event of monies being withheld, tenants must be notified of the disputed amount within that time frame. Whatever scheme is in force, appropriate redress is available to the tenant as per the terms and conditions provided.

Facts

DPS said only 19.1% of disputes over tenants’ deposits had gone wholly in favour of landlord/agent.
41.5% in wholly in favour of tenant. 39.4% in split awards.

Since 2007 DPS Protected a total of £1.1bn worth of deposits, which number two million, and had 8,929 adjudications.

Mydeposits and Tenancy Deposit Scheme found that most adjudications were in favour of tenants.

DPS is the popular choice for landlords, handling more deposits than Mydeposits. DPS has dealt with 250,000 landlords plus 20,000 agents acting on behalf of landlords.

TDS has 4,000 agents on its’ books.

A recent article from Residential Property Investor May/June 2011 highlights the necessity to comply with all schemes’ rules and particularly at the end of the tenancy when the tenant is claiming their monies back. There are important time scales to adhere to and many disputes are automatically awarded to the tenant if the agent/landlord has simply failed to respond within the timeframe. Once a tenant or landlord disagree on the deposit payout and agree to use the Alternative Dispute Resolution process, landlords have two weeks to make their case for withholding all or part of the monies. Kevin Firth, director of The Deposit Protection Service says “Agents are the worst offenders. Once it has been agreed to use alternative dispute resolution, it is astonishing how many go on holiday or simply ignore the timescale. As we say, time and time again, the deposit is the tenant’s money. It is therefore for the landlord or agent to have to prove their case. If they don’t then we simply pay out’.

A summary of the landlord’s claim is sent to the tenant who has two weeks to dispute it. The tenants counter-case goes back to the landlord who has seven days to dispute this. Finally, the adjudicator investigates and makes the decision, based on the evidence. The adjudicator’s evidence hinges on the inventory.

Having an understanding of how disagreements relating to the release of the deposit is handled, highlights the necessity of having correct paperwork in place, correct tenancy agreement, signed and dated, and a comprehensive inventory, also signed and dated by both tenant and agent. Ideally the inventory should be professionally produced and well laid out to enable an adjudicator to read and understand clearly the layout, condition and contents of that property, as they will rely on that document to make a decision. Photographs and videos are now often included as part of the inventory. These must be clearly labelled and identifiable and also verified by the tenant, or could be dismissed as evidence.

Why You Should Start a Part Time Internet Marketing Business

In this article I will be providing you with three compelling reasons to, why you should start a part time internet marketing business.

Before I share the three reasons with you, I want to let you know, that they have nothing to do with:

Creating vehicle to live your dream life

Provide you with an automated passive income stream,

Provide you with time and money freedom, to do whatever your heart’s desire is.

Here are the three reasons:

Reason #1

Right now we are living in through a time, where job security has gone out of the window. It wasn’t long ago, people could go out work for a company, work there until they retire, leaving the company with a watch or clock and a pension. Or at the very least change careers or companies a couple of times and still end up with a pension.

Now things have changed. The provision of your financial security has now shifted from the employer to the individual. An employer’s responsibility extends to paying you for service you’ve rendered to them.

If you aim is to become financially secure, you can’t just rely on your employer. You need to take responsibility for your own financial security. There are a lot of experts out there talking about how people are working towards retirement poverty. One possible solution is starting an online business. Wondering why? It’s because of the next reason.

Reason #2

The barriers to entry in starting an online business are low. To star an internet marketing business, the only things you really need to invest in is a commercial autoresponder and web hosting, both shouldn’t cost you more than $30 a month.

When you consider the costs involved in a bricks and mortar business, it’s a drop in the ocean. Plus an internet marketing business is one you can start with no products of your own.

The concept of an internet marketing business is a simple one. It’s basically finding a group of people with money to spend, who have a common interest, a niche. Being able to communicate with them on demand. Finding out what their wants and needs are, promoting products and services to fulfill their wants and need. It’s a simple concept, it’s not rocket science and anyone with a PC has the capability to do it. You can even do it do, by spending an hour a day.

If there’s one thing, I want stress, even though this is a simple concept it isn’t a walk in the park and isn’t a get rich in an instant scheme. Like with anything you start off new for the first time, you are going to come across challenges and obstacles. If you don’t have a plan or don’t know what you’re doing, you could easily throw in the towel when the going gets tough.

Reason #3

The Internet marketing business concept has been around ever since the internet started to be popular. In the early days, during the internet marketing gold rush marketers could make money by buying AdWords advertising and link to a sales page. People were literary making money, because of timing, being in the right place at the right time.

The gold rush days are over and the internet marketing landscape has changed and is still changing. As time goes by, as the market continues to mature, it will become harder.

Child Support 101: Income, Restrictions, and Renegotiating Child Support Payments

You are doing your best to make your payments and help financially take care of your children, but sometimes life gets in the way. You don’t want to fall behind on your child support payments, but it might be difficult for you. On the other hand, circumstances in your life could have changed to where you need more assistance each month. So how do you go about getting a modification to the agreement?

Extenuating Circumstances

No matter what the circumstances are, you must prove that the change is necessary. In other words, something significant has to have happened in your life to make it so the payments are either too much or not enough.

An example of this could be the loss of income. If you have lost your job and are now receiving an unemployment check, you may be able to petition the court for a modification to your agreement. However, in order for your income to be considered a factor, you must have had a change of around 10 to 20 percent, which varies from state to state.

Another thing you must remember when using loss of income as a reason for modification is it must not be voluntary. If you are claiming hardship because you voluntarily quit your job, chances are the judge is not going to grant you a modification to your child support agreement.

You should also be aware that a petition for modification due to income does not have to be just because of lost wages. A petition can also go before a judge if there is a significant increase in income as well.

You may also request modifications to your arrangement due to the need to support another child not covered by the current agreement.

Restrictions May Apply

There are other things to consider when you are trying to renegotiate the terms of your agreement. There may be a time restriction imposed. Some states may require you to wait as long as three years before you can change the terms of your agreement.

The time restriction is imposed in order to discourage parents from seeking to change their child support arrangements frequently. If the request is significant, say the loss of a job, a judge may allow you to modify the terms sooner. Otherwise, you will have to wait.

Additionally, child support payments agreed to in a separation agreement may be more difficult to change. This is because separation agreements, unlike divorce decrees, are considered binding contracts. They carry more weight in some states than a court order does and are therefore much harder to change.

No matter what your reasons for modification, you need to contact an attorney to ensure the paperwork is properly completed. Even if you and your former spouse agree to change the agreement, until the court approves of it, the payment responsibilities still stand. Failure to make the required payments could result in fines and jail time. It is important for you to go through the proper channels to avoid being in contempt of a court order.