The Impact of Stress on Hormones and Weight Loss

Some experts estimate that a whopping 75-90 percent of all doctor’s office visits are related, either directly or indirectly, to conditions caused by stress. I agree that stress is a major problem in today’s modern world, thanks to social media, long working hours, lack of physical activity, and other factors. And while stress can cause … Continue reading The Impact of Stress on Hormones and Weight Loss

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Make Mondays Great Again: 7 Tips to Start Your Week Right

It was just Friday afternoon, we shut our laptops down and started the weekend with a feeling of relief. But as quickly as it began, it’s over – tomorrow is Monday again. For most of us, not really a reason to celebrate. (Unless you work at Runtastic 😉 ) But with the right attitude, you … Continue reading Make Mondays Great Again: 7 Tips to Start Your Week Right

Dietitian’s 10 Proven Weight Loss Motivation Tips

Okay, first the bad news: Losing weight is and always will be hard work. The good news? These proven weight loss tips will motivate you to stay on track and see results faster! Weight loss begins in the mind The success or failure of your weight loss attempt not only depends on your body, but … Continue reading Dietitian’s 10 Proven Weight Loss Motivation Tips

Older adults can still grow new brain cells

https://wp.me/p9A07k-3Ru

Didn’t Get Enough Sleep Last Night? 6 Tips to Get Through the Day

A large meal before bed, too much on your mind, or a crying baby that keeps you awake all night: sometimes it is simply impossible to get enough sleep. In the morning we feel wiped out and the thought of a day full of work, meetings, and errands makes us break into a cold sweat. … Continue reading Didn’t Get Enough Sleep Last Night? 6 Tips to Get Through the Day

Cold Showers >> Top 4 Reasons Why They Are Good for You

Do you get chills at the mere thought of an icy cold shower? We can relate to that – there are definitely nicer things to imagine. But you should still give the so-called James Bond or Scottish shower a chance – just read the 4 convincing reasons below! #1 Cold water improves your circulation If … Continue reading Cold Showers >> Top 4 Reasons Why They Are Good for You

Healthier, Smarter, More Focused: Why Sleep Is so Important

We all know how it feels to be rested and relaxed after a good night’s sleep. Getting enough sleep is not only important for our mental wellbeing – it also has a lot of benefits for our health. 1. It strengthens the immune system Did you think your body is on stand-by while you sleep? … Continue reading Healthier, Smarter, More Focused: Why Sleep Is so Important

What Is a Healthy Way to Lose Weight?

Cravings, yo-yo diets, and the wrong training can make it really tough to lose weight. But the right tips can bring you lasting success: these include a healthy diet as well as the right amount of exercise. If you are ready to declare war on your excess weight, you need to be aware that… …weight … Continue reading What Is a Healthy Way to Lose Weight?

Easy Nutrition Guide >> What to Eat on Cardio, Strength, and Rest Day

If you take in all the macronutrients – fats, carbohydrates, and protein – then you shouldn’t have to worry about your workout performance and recovery, right? It’s not quite that simple. There are ways to fuel your body for specific types of workouts to help you get the maximum benefit from your training. Here’s a … Continue reading Easy Nutrition Guide >> What to Eat on Cardio, Strength, and Rest Day

Clean Quinoa Chicken Parmesan

Refocused Wellness

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup quinoa (dry)
  • 1 Tbsp dried Italian seasoning
  • 4 small boneless, skinless chicken breasts, (evenly sized)
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 1/2 cup almond flour or whole wheat flour
  • 2 large eggs, beaten
  • 1/4 cup all natural shredded mozzarella cheese (optional)
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese (optional)
  • 1 cup low-sugar organic marinara sauce
  • 1/4 cup fresh basil leaves, julienned
  • Sprinkle of red pepper flakes (optional)

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees f.
  2. Lightly oil a baking sheet or coat with nonstick spray. (I used avocado oil or olive oil spray)
  3. In a large saucepan, cook quinoa according to package instructions.
  4. Stir Italian seasoning into cooked quinoa, set aside.
  5. Season chicken with garlic powder, sea salt, and pepper, to taste.
  6. Working in small batches, dredge chicken first in flour, dip into eggs, then dredge in quinoa mixture, pressing slightly to coat…

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GF Blueberry-Vanilla Protein Pancakes

Refocused Wellness

Ingredients:

  • 1.5 cup Reds Gluten-Free Pancake Mix
  • 2 tbsp Coconut oil (melted)
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/2 cup Grass Fed Vanilla Protein
  • 1/4 cup Chia seeds
  • 1/4 cup ground flaxseed
  • 1 cup farm fresh blueberries
  • Strawberries & Bananas (optional)

Directions:

  1. In large mixing bowl combine pancake mix, coconut oil, eggs, protein powder, chia seeds, and flaxseed. Mix thoroughly.
  2. Pour 1/2 cup mixture onto heated degreased skillet. Cook on low heat. When small bubble appear add fresh blueberries spaced evenly.
  3. Flip pancake. Cook until golden brown.
  4. Makes approx. 1 dozen 3-4 inch pancakes.

~Enjoy

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Superfoods: 7 Foods to Strengthen Your Immune System

Your throat hurts and you feel wiped out? Or you want to avoid getting a cold? Make sure you regularly integrate superfoods into your diet – these seven health foods can help boost your immune system. Stop viruses before they start! What are superfoods? Superfoods are foods that have a particularly high amount of vitamins, … Continue reading Superfoods: 7 Foods to Strengthen Your Immune System

Pumpkin Spice Coffee Creamer

Refocused Wellness

cups-of-coffee

Are you trying to eat clean. Remove preservatives and additives from your diet but can’t live without your morning cup ofJoe? Yep. Feel you. And in truth for the average healthy adult 3-6 mg of caffeine can actually assist with a workout, improve your mood and overall feeling of well-being. Now how do you like them apples!

While all the flavored creamers taste wonderful, but they come laden with their own surprises… Making your own homemade creamers is simple, easy and cost-effective.

Feel free to substitute your milk of choice and adjust the condensed milk to your desired sweetness!

~Enjoy.
INGREDIENTS

  • 2 cups whole milk
  • 1 can condensed milk
  • 2 tbsp pure vanilla
  • 1/2 tbsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tbsp nutmeg.

fullsizeoutput_3effINSTRUCTIONS:

Combine all ingredients into storage container of choice. Shake well. Allow to sit overnight. Use according to preference.

Alter flavors as you prefer. Almond extract, hazelnut, caramel etc.

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High Protein Diet — Friend or Foe?

Refocused Wellness

If you are reading this you are likely like myself, acutely aware of the recommendations and changes within the health and fitness world. As a nutritionist, nurse and personal trainer, I’m always cautiously curious when I learn about new “trends”.

LETS START AT THE VERY BEGINNING.

MACRONUTRIENTS — proteins, carbohydrates and fats — essential nutrients the body requires in large amounts to maintain optimal function. For healthy individuals, the recommendations for macronutrients averages by the 60/30/10 rule. Sixty percent of your daily caloric intake should consist of  complex carbohydrates, 30 percent healthy fats  and 10 percent of your daily intake should consist of lean protein. 

Now you might have noticed some key works in there. COMPLEX. LEAN. HEALTHY.   Remember these. Each of these words hold significant value for you in reaching your nutrition, fitness and health goals. 

PROTEIN– WHAT IS IT?

fullsizeoutput_3a53.jpegProtein is a macronutrient used by…

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IT’S TWO O’CLOCK SOMEWHERE

Refocused Wellness

ENERGY….. How can I get more?! 

  • Just to get through the day?
  • To get through a workout
  • To balance your events of the night before?
  • Is your nutrition ZAPPING your energy stores?
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Easy #1:HYDRATE! Put the coffee down (Don’t hate– momma needs her coffee to) but on a serious note — its not helping you. What color is your urine? #drinkup
Easy #2:GET RID OF SUGAR! Sure an ice cream on a hot day sounds fantastic, but its psyching out your body. Sugars has your body doing the happy dance for all of an hour and then it crashes leaving you craving more.
Easy #3:EAT VARIETY. Are you TRULY what you need? Your busy! You eat on the run. Eat? what is that? When our diets lack our bodies #suffer. How does it tell us it needs more or needs cleaning? #Fatigue.
Easy #4: “Fill…

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Carbohydrates. Truth or hype. Is the end for this food group in sight?

Refocused Wellness

Carbohydrates. Atabu word in the health and fitness world today. Sadly the wide spread dislike of carbohydrates does not differentiate and thus ALL carbohydrates are given a bad rap. Unfortunately, society has us misinformed.

Carbohydrates are KEY to your body functions, structure and overall your health maintenance and weight loss goals! When you eliminate an entire food category — a macronutrient at that, your body is MISSING major vitamins and minerals that are REQUIRED for optimal body function. This means, if your looking for more energy, you NEED to consume the foods appropriate to give you just that!

So what exactly is a “Carb” &

What do you mean by macronutrient?

Macronutrients are nutrients (nutrition) that contain essential vitamins and minerals that the body is not able to make on its own. These are items such as carbohydrates, proteins and fats that are NEEDED for your everyday survival. For…

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Some aspects of being independent

Tips from Sharvi

Have you ever asked yourself how independent you are?  As a child, we are fully dependent on our parents, yearning for admiration and reassurance on everything.  Over the years, we form our peer groups and want their approval, often abiding to peer-pressure at an early age, and even start drinking alcohol and smoking.  Then at work, we find the need to go along organizational politics, to ensure a chance for being promoted,… the list could go on!

Being independent (self-sufficient, self-supporting, self-sustaining, and so on), doesn’t mean that we believe that we don’t need anyone at all.  However we take responsibility for our own happiness, destiny, and the consequences of our actions.  There are different aspects of being independent, that bring holistic wellness at individual level.  I will tell you about some of them, that I believe to be crucial.

Decision-making

Being independent, speeds up decision-making for the individual.  So…

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New Year’s Resolution: The 2 Main Things to Reach Your Ideal Weight

Every year tons of people make New Year’s resolutions in the hopes of becoming more healthy and fit. Yet only around 9% of people actually report feeling like they were successful in reaching their resolution! Why is that? In my personal and professional experience, it’s because people overcommit and are extremely vague about their goals. You … Continue reading New Year’s Resolution: The 2 Main Things to Reach Your Ideal Weight

6 ways to relax your tired feet

Tips from Sharvi

Relaxing your feet, specially after a long, tiring day at work, or running around, is something we all look forward to, right? At least from time to time. In today’s post, I’ll share some helpful tips that I use, find simple and easy, to relax and pamper my feet!

Shoes

I prioritize comfort next to aesthetic. Having small feet (normally size 36, European standard), I unfortunately have limited choice when buying shoes, as my size seems rare in many shoe models that I try at the malls!

When I know that I’ll walk a lot, I avoid wearing high heels, and prefer my tennis shoes or other low heels instead. Standing up a lot puts pressure on the feet.

Once I wore a pair of new shoes to the crowded city centre, and having parked my car, had to walk a long way. I truly regret having worn my new…

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5 Ways to Squeeze in a Bit More Movement into Your Busy Day

Are you really aware of how much you are sitting throughout the day? At work, at home on the couch, in the car, during meetings and even sitting and staring at your smartphone. It’s no secret that many of us are really sitting much more than we are moving which is so bad for our … Continue reading 5 Ways to Squeeze in a Bit More Movement into Your Busy Day

Working smart

Tips from Sharvi

Should you work harder, and harder, and then, infinitely harder…? From what I’ve seen, we really should be working hard, of course! However, after having reached a high level of working hard enough, working harder could prove to be unproductive and even unhealthy, giving undesired results! That’s why I choose to work smart as well!!

Plan

Planning your work on a daily basis is a must. We should also have weekly, monthly, yearly and longer term (if possible) plans, with constant / regular feedback and review.

Emails

I check my emails only 2-3 times daily, and make use of the priority folder, with notifications enabled, only for my important emails.

Breaks

Taking regular breaks help me to recharge, and I work better after getting back to my work! The interval and duration of breaks, vary from person to person, and according to your organization.

Avoid having lunch at your work…

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Fitness Motivation: 4 Top Tips to Get Moving Again

So, you have started with your training. Everything is going great, and you are full of ambition to achieve your fitness goals. It feels like you have to keep holding yourself back so your body doesn’t get too much of a good thing. But after a few weeks, you don’t want to leave the sofa … Continue reading Fitness Motivation: 4 Top Tips to Get Moving Again

GF Butterscotch & White Chocolate chip Protein Cookies

Refocused Wellness

My Post-22
So pleasantly surprised!

In our house we like to cook and we LOVE to try new things. Creativity is so fun! Today we experimented with GF cookies that can be used as a quick snack before an exercise or the answer to a sweet tooth craving.

These cookies are simple and easy. It’s a sure thing the whole family will love.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 4 Ripe bananas (mashed)
  • 2.5 cups GF old fashion oats
  • 2 large eggs
  • 3/4 cup all natural peanut butter
  • 2 servings vanilla protein powder
  • 1/4 – 1/2 cup of butterscotch morsels
  • 1/4 – 1/2 cup white chocolate chip morsels

DIRECTIONS:

  • Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees.
  • In a large mixing bowl, combine bananas and oats; Mix thoroughly.
  • Add eggs, peanut butter and protein powder; Mix thoroughly
  • Add morsels and complete mixing.
  • On large cookie sheet (cooking stone preferred) apply a 1 tbsp scoop of dough approximately 1.5 inches apart.

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Healthy Lifestyle: Why Fitness Makes you Healthy and Successful

Take a moment to think about the word “fitness.” What images pop into your head? First, you probably think about activities that really make you sweat. Maybe you imagine yourself running outdoors in the fresh air, doing bodyweight training, or taking a bike trip. But fitness is much more than just exercise: it’s a lifestyle … Continue reading Healthy Lifestyle: Why Fitness Makes you Healthy and Successful

8 advantages of working from home

Tips from Sharvi

Working from home is existent in various industries and countries around the world. People choose to work from home for diverse reasons. Certain companies have been encouraging this practice, where the need for a better work-life balance is recognized, employees are trusted to be disciplined, responsible and are accountable.

Previously, I worked for companies, going to office. Currently I’ve been working from home for 5 years already, and love doing so! Having studied in the field of Business Administration, I’ve managed my own businesses from home. Going to the office everyday and not living life on my own terms, wasn’t what I yearned for!

Let’s see why working from home could be interesting…

Some advantages

  1. If you’re an entrepreneur / solopreneur, then working from home could actually save you office rent! If you work for a company, then the latter saves from not paying for more office spaces.
  2. With hours…

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10,000 Steps a Day & a Healthy Lifestyle with These 7 Tips

We are supposed to take 10,000 steps a day to stay healthy – that’s the standard recommendation from the World Health Organization. This may sound impossible at first, but if you change a few of your daily habits, it won’t be hard to get more exercise. Get More Movement into Your Day with These 7 … Continue reading 10,000 Steps a Day & a Healthy Lifestyle with These 7 Tips

5 ways failure helps success!

Tips from Sharvi

We all sometimes feel that we’ve failed, be it in our personal or professional life, our relationships, our dreams and desires, and more. How we react to this, makes all the difference… We could actually gain from failure!

Learn from mistakes

No one succeeds all the time, in fact mistakes that we make, give us signals as to what should be improved, in order to have a better chance in future. Learning from your past mistakes is one of the most important and practical things that you could do!

Having a divorce doesn’t mean that you’re a failure. Instead, you could learn (if you choose to do so), to move on and to be better equipped, as from then on. The more experienced you get, the more you can handle things constructively.

Improve skills

When we fail, we find ways that don’t work. This prompts us to find out what…

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Walking Backwards: Reasons to Try this Walking Technique

Each day we put one foot in front of the other. Step by step we cover different distances on foot, without spending a minute to think about the process. Since we are so used to walking forwards, it is tough to suddenly start trying to walk backwards… Why should we walk backwards? It may sound … Continue reading Walking Backwards: Reasons to Try this Walking Technique

Ice cream and alternatives

Tips from Sharvi

I love ice cream! Don’t you? I honestly have never met anyone who ‘hates’ ice cream! What’s so special about this delicacy? Why do we feel tempted to have a lick, as soon as we see one of these? Is it the appearance? is it the chill? Does it bring back past golden memories of carefree childhood…??

I’m allergic to cold, or directly said, have started developing sinus at an early stage. This means that I have to watch my ice cream intake during winter, and also not make an abuse of, for the rest of the year. Lucky are you, if you don’t have to obey such restrictions!

Ice cream is ‘a soft, sweet frozen food made with milk and cream and typically flavoured with vanilla, fruit, or other ingredients’, as per the Oxford Dictionaries. Generally served in a dish / cup or licked from a cone, the variety…

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6 reasons to be yourself

Tips from Sharvi

Being yourself,… I mean ‘truly’ being yourself is often a challenge! As babies, we start growing up, and gradually learn how to behave, what to say, what to think, in brief, we are taught to conform to the societal norms of our environment. We learn many good things, and at the same time, feel the need to abide by group pressure.

I’m convinced that while I should acknowledge and accept moral values for my own benefit and for that of society and the wider world, being myself is primordial to my existence!

True to yourself

Being true to yourself is important. When you take decisions, especially big ones, these are bound to impact your future. Being your true self gives you the right state of mind to take the right decisions.

Set your goals

When you are true to yourself, you are likely to set the right goals for yourself…

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8 reasons to read daily

Tips from Sharvi

Are you someone who craves information, reading many books, e-books, magazines, blog articles, social media posts, and so on? If you’re not reading enough or at all, then doing so will help you in many ways…

I’ve been reading even more, since I started my blog in January this year. I normally read more online resources than paper books (compared to my childhood days). However, I’m going back to reading books, alongside e-books, blog posts, and other online resources. Whatever be the form, I gain so much from reading!

1. Joy

Reading is likely to bring pure joy to the reader. Find something you’re interested in, get on a cozy couch, grab some coffee / tea / a smoothie, with your favourite snacks, and you’re off for a simple yet treasurable moment! In the process, you’ll gain so much too…

2. Information

Reading informative texts, coupled with illustrative videos, photos…

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The 10 best fitness blogs

Want to get fit this year, but don't know where to start? We have chosen the best fitness blogs to empower you and help to get you started on your journey to tip-top physical fitness. Fitness blogs aim to inspire, empower, and motivate you to reach your health and fitness goals. Getting up off the … Continue reading The 10 best fitness blogs

Solve your problem in 7 steps

Tips from Sharvi

Albert Einstein once said “We cannot solve our problems with the same thinking we used when we created them”. I truly admire that quote, and have seen the result of applying some effective problem-solving techniques myself…

I recall a 2 day workshop I attended a few months ago, which was on creative problem-solving techniques. While it was a formal training, it included a lot of interesting and interactive activities. At the end of it, I applied much of what I learnt, using structured processes to a complex personal issue I was facing at that time. I’m very relieved now that I was able to define the problem, examine it, find possible solutions and finally apply what I chose as my action plan!

I’d love to share some ideas with you, as the purpose of my blog is ‘practical tips to make your daily life easier!’. You may apply the tips…

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10 anger management tips

Tips from Sharvi

Everyone feels angry at times! That’s natural,… then why should you manage your anger? What are the potential consequences of uncontrolled temper, leading to actions and harsh spoken words, that could bring regret and cause damage to your personal and professional relationships?

In the Oxford Dictionaries, anger is defined as ‘Feeling or showing strong annoyance, displeasure, or hostility; full of anger’. As per the Collins Dictionary, ‘Anger management is a set of guidelines that are designed to help people control their anger’.

Generally, some people tend to be short-tempered, while others are high-tempered. “Speak when you are angry – and you’ll make the best speech you’ll ever regret. ” – Laurence J. Peter.

Below is a list of helpful tips, that I find simple and have seen the benefits, having used many of them myself:

1. Think before you speak

Always be careful of what you say, especially when…

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Need for a digital detox?

Tips from Sharvi

Do you look at your mobile phone first thing in the morning and last thing, before going to sleep at night? How many times do you peek at your phone screen during the day? Honestly, while in class, attending a business presentation or even… during a meeting with your client? While at the dinner table with family or during a date with your special one?

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While the use of technology is indeed very helpful and even essential, making judicious use of it has become an important issue for many. Life is generally getting busier, and more hectic. Precious moments spent with family, friends and close ones tend to be rarer and short. At an individual level, you could be compromising your professional productivity and personal well-being! These are some of the reasons why you should pay attention to and consider taking a digital detox at regular intervals if needed!

“Technology…

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25 tips for inner peace

Tips from Sharvi

Busy times, lots to do every day, with more and more pressure building up… Added to stress, comes the conflict in relationships! How do you accomplish it all while being energetic, and stay at peace with your inner self on a daily basis?

The Oxford Dictionaries defines the word peace as ‘Freedom from disturbance; tranquillity’.

On my journey to finding more peace and serenity in my daily life, I’ve read and experienced various things. I will share some of the top ones that I find have worked great for me, and also more ways that help…

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Practice the following on a daily basis, or at least regularly:

  1. Have a positive attitude towards life
  2. Meditation
  3. Mindfulness
  4. Yoga
  5. Sports
  6. Swimming
  7. Listen to music (soothing)
  8. Dance (to express yourself)
  9. Read many books
  10. Plan your day (to-do list)
  11. Morning, evening and bedtime routines
  12. Skincare routine (yes!!!)
  13. Try a new recipe
  14. Declutter your house…

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10 daily habits for productivity

Tips from Sharvi

We’ve all gone through times when we know that we’ve worked hard, felt exhausted, and yet missed our set targets! This may apply to both, your personal/professional circumstances.

While I’m not a ‘Productivity Guru’, I’ve spent consequent amount of time reading about the subject and practicing, so that I improve myself. In this blog post, I’ll share with you 10 tips, that have contributed towards my betterment…

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Among various definitions of the word ‘productive’ by The Oxford Dictionaries, I find ‘Achieving a significant amount or result’, to be the most appropriate for the context of my blog.

How to be productive, achieve your goals/objectives, and keep a cool head all at the same time? These are my top 10 daily habits:

1. To-do list

Always plan your professional and personal commitments. Have a to-do list, each for your daily, weekly, monthly and longer-term/strategic needs. Always plan in advance and cater…

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10 reasons to persevere

Tips from Sharvi

What’s the ultimate secret to success? Different people would give different answers to this question. However, while many things do truly contribute to your success, without perseverance/persistence, all your efforts would fall apart! As per the Oxford Dictionaries perseverance is ‘Persistence in doing something despite difficulty or delay in achieving success’.

My relationship with ‘perseverance’ has been a strong one! While I previously studied in the field of Business Administration (on a part-time basis), I also gained corporate working experiences at the same time. However, I’ve chosen to work from home with flexibility, being my own boss, doing different things (including blogging). This was a major decision, asking for much perseverance on my part, especially since I had to start afresh. I’ve been running my own businesses for over 5 years already!

I’ll share with you some reasons for perseverance, that consistently give me the punch and boost that I…

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10 tips for proper sleep

Tips from Sharvi

Sleeping is such an important habit in life, yet, don’t we take it for granted at times? Staying up late for indulgence, watching television, chatting on mobile phones, finishing work late at night. Although at first, you might not question the quality of your sleep, your mind and body get exhausted and then you see the adverse effects…

The word ‘sleep’ is defined as ‘A condition of body and mind which typically recurs for several hours every night, in which the nervous system is inactive, the eyes closed, the postural muscles relaxed, and consciousness practically suspended’, by the Oxford Dictionaries.

In this blog post, I’ll share with you how I ensure a good night’s sleep on a daily basis. These are my best 10 ways:

1. Exercise

Exercising daily helps you to sleep well, in addition to keeping you in good shape. Exercise in the morning or else in the…

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Feel great about your body!

Tips from Sharvi

Looking around we always find slim and trim models… be it on social media, in movies, magazines, fashion shows… everywhere! The obsession for a flat stomach and shapely body is a trend that has lasted since centuries and continues to do so. How do you strike the right balance between being reasonably conscious about your looks, yet, not fall for undue peer pressure?

Body image is defined as ‘The subjective picture or mental image of one’s own body’, by the Oxford Dictionaries.

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While I do recognize the need to work towards my looks and health, I never give in to what others say, just for the sake of fitting in. In this post, I’ll share with you 8 tips that I find effective:

1. Dressing up

Dress up right for your body type. Based on your natural body shape, you can effectively hide the less flattering areas and make the…

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GF Homestyle Chicken Noodle Soup

Refocused Wellness

IMG_7534

What do you do on a cold fall rainy day with a left over rotisserie chicken?! Make homemade chicken noodle soup of course.Boil down your leftover chicken (bones included) to make your own bone broth. Use your favorite vegetables, as spice and season to take and ta da. A comfort meal is born.

~Enjoy

INGREDIENTS

  • Rotisserie chicken
  • 1 (8 ounce pkg) prepared GF elbow noodles (Bonza Chickpea Pastaseen here)
  • 1 (32 ounce) container Organic Chicken Stock
  • 3 cups chopped celery
  • 3 cups chopped carrots
  • 3 garlic cloves (minced)
  • 2 tbsp parsley
  • 1/2 tbsp thyme
  • 1 tsp salt (adjust to taste)
  • 1 tbsp fresh ground pepper
  • 1 tbsp celery salt
  • IMG_75332 bay leaves
  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • Shave parmesan cheese (optional)

Boil Rotisserie chicken (bones included) in large pot for approx. 2 hours. Remove when meat easy to remove from the bone. De-bone both and chicken. (Using Mesh…

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My top 12 daily self-care habits

Tips from Sharvi

The term ‘self-care’ is defined as ‘The practice of taking action to preserve or improve one’s own health’ and also as ‘The practice of taking an active role in protecting one’s own well-being and happiness, in particular during periods of stress’, by the Oxford Dictionaries.

While I’m not an expert in the field, on my journey to finding better ways for myself, I’ve been reading on the subject and have put it into practice. Based on what I’ve experienced, I’d like to share with you how I incorporate self-care habits into my daily life.

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These are my top 12 tips:

1. Waking up early

First thing in the morning, open the window to let in sunlight, breathe in plenty of oxygen, and make your bed. This is the first step to starting your day wonderfully!

2. Drink water

Drink at least 2 glasses of warm/hot water on an empty stomach…

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I’m Vulnerable, and Thats ok.

Refocused Wellness

allergies-in-colorado-springs
I remember the first day, I stepped out of the house with no make up on. My second born was just barely 4 weeks old. The summer sun was hot and I was doing my best to keep my *&it together. My five year old was thriving for my attention, and by thriving, I’m putting it kindly. I truly don’t remember where we were going but I remember the struggle and I remember my “I don’t give F**%” attitude”. I’m pretty sure I still had my maternity yoga pants on and some baggy tank top- but I simply didn’t care. I was clothed the kids were clean and lets face it life will in fact go on. When I reflect back, there is something so freeing about that memory.

At what point did we allow the world out there, to dictate what happens in here. Ok, yes I know there…

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Practicing the Four Basic Principles To Reduce Stress

Refocused Wellness

Physical health is very important when it comes to chronic disease prevention. imagesNutrition is equally as important. Information related to this is readily known and understood. When working to balance our health, we often lose focus on the implications, physical and mental stress has on our bodies, Releasing substances like cortisol and other stress hormones the reek havoc.

When thinking about wellness, surely the first thing that comes to mind is food — my favorite! And exercise of course. I am a firm believer that what we put into our bodies is what we get out of them and how we treat our bodies is how they will perform. Would you believe me if I told you, the foods you choose to eat influences your mood? 

Have you every considered how mental clarity and joy influences your abilities to achieve your fitness goals? Coping  — one of Many building blocks…

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Finding Calm – Letting go of “Perfect”

Refocused Wellness

The first snow. It’s New England. In a 1764 farm home, it is peaceful and quiet. The woods stoves crackle, there is a faint sound of a television in the distance and the only other sound is the slight hum of the last load of laundry, the sound of a button, or maybe a zipper, clinking in the drier.

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Ahhhh Peace.

It’s funny how when you teach, learn and lead a lifestyle of health, we frequently look to all of the physical attributes of health. The additional weight on your joints. Daily exercise.  The importance of stretching sore or overworked muscles. Choosing the right nutrition and eating organic. The list is endless.

Tonight, I think of the calm. The peace in your soul — finding balance. Getting to this place for me — took YEARS. And as I work through the path and journey to where I am…

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UNFILTERED ~ The un-glamorous truth of one mom, athlete & business owner, finding the path to truly LIVE amongst the chaos.

Refocused Wellness

Ok, lets talk. I’m a SUCKER! I’m a sucker for putting everyone else needs before my own. I mean, seriously, it is SOOO much easier to play with slime when your daughter asks, then to hear her innocently, with the cutest most apologetic smile, tell you that she only got a “little on the couch BUT she got it out all by herself” (insert deep breathe here). Or better yet. It is amazing to be just getting into your grove, with your favorite song, when your asked for another snack because the one you got before you got on the treadmill, just wasn’t what they had in mind.

EXCUSES, I’ve used them all.

Lets be real. If there is an excuse to getting out of exercise or rationalizing why I can have  ice cream for dinner, I have used it and probably used it more then once. You see…

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Postpartum Anxiety: How struggling through self-care, healthy eating and daily exercise SAVED me.

https://wp.me/pa6Up4-mK

Parkers’ Garden Fresh Marinara 

Refocused Wellness

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As a kid I savored the smell and taste of fresh tomato sauce. As a health conscious mom – I love that I can bring these memories and comforts of childhood into my own home. Fresh, nutritious and family friendly.

  • 1 Peck fresh Garden tomatoes
  • 1 Large fresh zucchini (optional)
  • 1/4 cup red wine
  • 6 oz. organic tomato paste
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 2-4 cloves fresh garlic crushed
  • 1/2 -1 tbsp. Salt
  • 1/4 tbsp ground pepper
  • 1/4 tbsp oregano
  • 1 tsp. Celery salt
  • 1/4 cup fresh basil
  • 1/2 -1 medium red onion chopped

(All ingredient with ranges can beadjusted to desired taste)

DIRECTIONS

  • Quarter and removed rind of tomatoes; add to large stew pot.
  • Add olive oil garlic, basil and onion.
  • Boil until tomatoes are softened (approx. 1/2hr)
  • Removed from heat.
  • Using immersion blender — blend ingredients thoroughly.
  • Add all other ingredients; mix well.
  • Return to low heat. Allow…

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Chicken & Zucchini Enchiladas

Refocused Wellness

Wondering what to do with your extra zucchini from the garden… THIS is amazing! “The homemade sauce is to die for!” 

Ingredients:

  • 1 lg. package corn tortillas
  • shredded (dark leaf) greens (optional)
  • 1 medium tomato diced (optional)
  • Avocado slices (optional)
  • Green onions chopped (optional)
  • 2-3 tbsp olive oil

Filling:

  • 1.5 pounds chicken (diced or strips)
  • 1 orange pepper
  • 1 medium sweet onion
  • 1 medium zucchini
  • 1 tbsp coconut oil
  • 2 cloves fresh garlic
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 1/4 tsp. pepper
  • 1 (6oz) pkg. mild cheddar cheese
  • 2 (15oz) cans black beans (rinsed and drained)

Sauce:

  • 2 garlic cloves Minced
  • 1 tbsp. onion minced
  • 2.5 tbsp. chili powder
  • 1/4 tbsp. oregano
  • 1/4 tbsp. Parsley
  • 1 tbsp.  basil (fresh)
  • 6 oz. organic tomatoes sauce
  • 1/4 cup fresh salsa
  • 1/2 tsp. ground cumin
  • 1.5 cups water
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp pepper

Preparation and cooking:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Filling 

Add to large…

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CLEAN LIVING

Refocused Wellness

It is hard to say at what point in my life I recognized the importance of living a “clean” lifestyle. Implementing these beliefs, takes time, is focused on balance, coined by the phrase: “Progress Not Perfection

fullsizeoutput_3d48Clean eating, clean products, and environmentally conscious companies and consumers are hot topics today, but the question remains…

Is the price tag associated with these items really worth it and what is the return on your investment?

Everything being a matter of choice, it is important to understand what it is you are making a choice about. I like to compare it to the car you drive. It truly doesn’t matter if your choice in vehicles is a brand new car you just drove off the lot, or an antique you refurbished and are afraid to take out of your garage — its hard to disagree that both need clean fuel. No water, no dirt…

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Vinyasa Yoga… A must try.

Refocused Wellness

savasana-hand2-1024x682As someone who thoroughly loves to work out, I am always looking of new things. There is just something about being active for one solid chunk of the day. Whether it is simply a brisk walk with a friend, a run on the rail trail, or a quick work out video, the state it leaves me in after is almost euphoric.

Now don’t get me wrong. I wish I was in far better shape then I am, BUT I will get there. Runs are not nearly as fast as they used to be. My hips still hurt from child birth. And my butt jiggles with the best of them (haha) However, just as I tell my clients, have patience. As a mother of two littles, one 13 months, the other 5 years, I take advantage of the little moments that I can steal away. #consistancywillgetyouthere

Late last night however, I…

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Crustless Spinach, Ham & Bacon Quiche

Refocused Wellness

Crustless Spinach & Bacon Quiche 

Ingredients: 

  • 1 dozen Farm Fresh eggs 
  • 1/4 cup almond milk and/or skim
  • 1/2 pkg turkey bacon (cooked)
  • 1 cup cubed ham steak
  • 1.5 cups of baby spinach chopped 
  • 1 cup feta cheese
  • 1/2 cup parmesan cheese
  • 1 cup shredded mozzarella
  • 1/4 tsp. Pepper
  • 1/4 tsp. Garlic pwd.
  • 1/8 tsp. Celery salt
  • 1/4 cup organic greens 

Directions:

  • Using all eggs; crack and add to large mixing bowl; Add milk & whisk until blended well. For a “fluffy quiche, use an electric blender; Once completed, set aside.

  • Combine spinach, cooked turkey bacon, organic greens, mozzarella and seasonings together. Mix well. Spread evenly into 12 inch pie pan or 8×8 square baking pan. 

  • Pour eggs on top and spread evenly 

  • Bake for approximately 45 minutes or until able to insert butter knife without residue. 

  • Remove from oven and cool. 

~Enjoy

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Some aspects of being independent

Tips from Sharvi

Have you ever asked yourself how independent you are?  As a child, we are fully dependent on our parents, yearning for admiration and reassurance on everything.  Over the years, we form our peer groups and want their approval, often abiding to peer-pressure at an early age, and even start drinking alcohol and smoking.  Then at work, we find the need to go along organizational politics, to ensure a chance for being promoted,… the list could go on!

Being independent (self-sufficient, self-supporting, self-sustaining, and so on), doesn’t mean that we believe that we don’t need anyone at all.  However we take responsibility for our own happiness, destiny, and the consequences of our actions.  There are different aspects of being independent, that bring holistic wellness at individual level.  I will tell you about some of them, that I believe to be crucial.

Decision-making

Being independent, speeds up decision-making for the individual.  So…

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Self LOVE — Put your oxygen on.

Refocused Wellness

Gaining energy, kindness, compassion and friendships through simply loving yourself.

imagesWhat is it about you that you are proud of? What do you enjoy about yourself? Are you kind? Giving? Thoughtful? A good listener? Maybe you are a hard worker. A good dad. Mom. Wife. Friend.

In my younger years, I struggled. I struggles with who “I” was. I struggled with what I believed in. I allowed others to determine my self-worth. As a fitness and health conscious person, I heard multiple comments about being “to into yourself”. Striving for perfection. I started to believe this in those vulnerable years.

Maturation brought a new vision and with that a breath of confidence and perseverance. Setting goals and achieving them. Pursuing a life “I” wanted to live. Surrounding myself with like-minded people — positive in thought and life perception.

Then came motherhood. Another challenge. As a society, it has been embedded…

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Eating Organic On A Budget

Refocused Wellness

WHY organic??

Simply stated, there are chemicals in your food source, you can’t see, you can’t taste and you are not told they are there. From a clinician stand point, this is a difficult and hot topic.  Its important to weigh the risk verses the benefit. With a central focus on autoimmunity and allergies in our household, choosing organic foods is a priority. It is also concerning that the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) and its affiliates suggest that the risk of ingestion of pesticides for children exceed that of an adult and can have an impact on the childs’ brain development, specifically IQ, perceptual reasoning, and non-verbal problem solving skills. More information can be found at Pesticide Exposure in Children. Being from New Hampshire our childhood cancer statistics are DOUBLE that of the national average! 

As a family of 4 the cost of groceries is, “do-able”. We spend…

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Should I take the bus or drive my car?

Tips from Sharvi

It happens at times, we get stuck in a dilemma, asking which mode of transportation to take on a particular day. There are pros and cons for each, and except for normal days such as going to work or school, where our routine and time keeping is primordial & pondering on how to get to our destination, wouldn’t be helpful! So instead, let’s think of going for window shopping on a Saturday to relax & enjoy…

I’m ready, all dressed up in my latest casual jeans & a tank top, not in a hurry to get to the city centre mall, where I will meet my friends to unwind this weekend. I consider taking my car, then realize that I haven’t washed it yet for the coming week. I also know that the mall parking is likely to be full, leaving me with the need to wander around to see…

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Basic budgeting tips

Tips from Sharvi

As a student, years ago, I went wild on a shopping spree, and decided to take a closer look at my needs and examine ways to control my impulsiveness!

This brought me to some basic budgeting ideas, that I will share with you below:

  1. Make a list of things you fancy, in order of priority, starting with your needs. The least important ones could wait for next month, or even after.
  2. Determine your net income, after deducting fundamental expenses, from your total monthly revenue / salary / pocket-money.
  3. Always make sure you have a buffer amount / extra provision for important uncertainties / contingencies / emergencies.
  4. Use a pocket notebook and pen / excel sheet / or any free downloadable note-taking and budgeting app, to keep track of your list of desired items / services.
  5. Make sure to put money aside regularly, as on the long-term, you’ll see a difference…

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Serenity for achievements!

Tips from Sharvi

In today’s short blog post, I’ll share with you, how I find my daily serenity for focusing on achieving my set goals…

This is a photo of Jacaranda trees in my garden (photo by @sharvina.y (my own ) on Instagram).  Looking at such images, always helps clear my mind, giving me the punch and mindfulness (‘the quality or state of being conscious or aware of something’, as per oxforddictionaries.com) that I need, to pursue my daily goals!

Having a daily meditation ritual, listening to music, always helps me, and of course some yoga exercises too!  Your preference could be playing an instrument / dancing / playing tennis / football / swimming / any hobbies / sports you enjoy truly!

Whichever activities suit you best, practicing on a regular basis, does help to relax, gain stamina, be fit,  giving a positive boost for achieving your goals!

Would you like to share…

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Chocolate…

Tips from Sharvi

Chocolate,… who can resist it?  I’m not a chocoholic!  I however do have cravings from time to time!  Chocolate bars, chocolate cakes, donuts, brownies, mousse, ice cream, shakes, hot chocolate, melted chocolate, cold chocolate, frozen…  Wow!!!

Chocolate is defined as ‘a food in the form of a paste or solid block made from roasted and ground cacao seeds, typically sweetened and eaten as confectionery’, by oxforddictionaries.com.  While being a true relish, over-consumption often leads to obesity, sugar-related illness, and more, entailing further health complications.  However, luckily, we can strike a reasonable balance between enjoying chocolate and watching our health, at the same time!

While cravings should be controlled, I personally don’t crave on a daily basis. These are some of my ideas, that could be of help to others:

  1. Keeping very little / no chocolate at home, helps in lower consumption.
  2. Opting for semi-sweet / dark / bitter chocolate, could…

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Working smart

Tips from Sharvi

Should you work harder, and harder, and then, infinitely harder…? From what I’ve seen, we really should be working hard, of course! However, after having reached a high level of working hard enough, working harder could prove to be unproductive and even unhealthy, giving undesired results! That’s why I choose to work smart as well!!

Plan

Planning your work on a daily basis is a must. We should also have weekly, monthly, yearly and longer term (if possible) plans, with constant / regular feedback and review.

Emails

I check my emails only 2-3 times daily, and make use of the priority folder, with notifications enabled, only for my important emails.

Breaks

Taking regular breaks help me to recharge, and I work better after getting back to my work! The interval and duration of breaks, vary from person to person, and according to your organization.

Avoid having lunch at your work…

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Achieving sheer happiness!

Tips from Sharvi

What does ‘happiness’ mean to you? Often people relate happiness to finding their true soul mate, others, to buying a huge house, a prestigious car, earning a six or eight figure income, and so on… Happiness means different things to different people.

Through this blog post, I wish to explore in a nutshell, the 5 W’s and the H (who, what, when, where, why and how), about finding happiness, according to what I think and feel.

Who

Who is responsible in making you happy? We may feel that when things are terrific with the one we fancy / our spouse, our peers, then we’re happy. However, happiness depends much on our own attitude and the way we see and accept things.

Mature people understand such things better, having had more experience.

What

What makes you happy? Does buying a great penthouse, or starting an eight figure salary job, make people…

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Some ideas to wake up early…

Tips from Sharvi

Today I woke up, and went out for a morning stroll in my garden before breakfast. I was thrilled to benefit from the comfortable warmth of the morning sunshine (as in Mauritius, we’re in winter, and it’s getting cold for our usual hot tropical climate!). I practiced yoga, deep breathing, and meditated, confirming to myself that I was indeed right, not to hit the snooze button today!

This is a photo that I took while strolling in my garden. I’m pleased that I can make use of these bright and joyful flowers for my blog post, and that I can share them on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.

Photo by Sharvina.y (my own). Some ideas to wake up early..., Tips from Sharvi. Photo by Sharvina.y (my own). Some ideas to wake up early…, Tips from Sharvi.

Starting the morning in this way, does give me the right boost to go about the rest of my day!

If you’re not a morning person, then…

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How to better plan for your grocery shopping

Tips from Sharvi

Grocery shopping is an essential task, needed in every household. We buy foodstuff, detergents, toiletries, personal care products, and so much more, to cater for daily family needs. At the same time, we juggle among office time, family time and time for ourself.

Do you ask yourself how to better plan for your grocery shopping? If so, do read on…

I work from home doing 3 different things, including blogging, and also take the responsibility for grocery shopping at home. You may instead be working in an office, running your own business, blogging from home as well, or more.

However, we could all make the most of our weekly / biweekly / or as and when required visits to the hypermarket / store, by carefully planning for our shopping in advance.

I will share with you some helpful ideas that I’ve been using for some time already…

1) Prioritize

Use…

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Networking…

Tips from Sharvi

Networking is defined as ‘interact with others to exchange information and develop professional or social contacts’, by Oxford Dictionaries. No matter in which profession you are in, whether you work at all or not, if you’re into your own business, are a blogger working from home, a student, job seeker, someone looking for friends, interested in dating, looking for like-minded people with hobbies and similar interests as yours, and so much more, you can very much benefit from networking!

Personal social life

Let’s start from home… We normally wouldn’t say that we ‘network’ with our family members, right? However, we need daily communication to keep a strong bond in the family. That’s why the whole family needs to get together (at least) at dinner time, sharing with each other how the day was, on a daily basis. Parents keep an eye on their children’s activities, so that they don’t…

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Postpartum Anxiety: How struggling through self-care, healthy eating and daily exercise SAVED me.

Refocused Wellness

fullsizeoutput_45a6.jpegFor years I was an athlete. Actually I was two weeks pregnant with our second child, our precious son when I ran my most recent half marathon.
That was 26 months ago. The pregnancy with Logan was TOUGH. By tough I mean, I didn’t complain a ton (or maybe I did), but I was in CONSTANT pain. I slept on the couch most nights in hopes that sleeping sitting up would provide some relief to no avail.

Exercise was non-existent. I don’t think I could move far beyond what was needed for work, even though that was likely what would be the best for me. I remember my neighbor giving birth to her daughter two days before Logan. I couldn’t have been more jealous! When my water broke at 9pm June 26th, I was in heaven. This pain driven adventure was almost over… or so I thought.

Logan came at…

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