Gear up for the Holidays: Get a Head Start on your New Year Resolution Today!

It is that time of the year when you start thinking about the holidays. Finding just the right clothes for all those year-end do’s. Buying presents. Binging and letting yourself go. And of course then comes the inevitable New Year resolution to lose those post-holiday bulges and welcome a fitter you. This year why not try something new? Advance your New Year resolution and get that gym membership now! Without the pressure of living up to a New Year’s promise and competing with all those fabulous Instagram gym updates from friends, you might actually make use of that membership. Besides, you end up looking fabulous for the parties and might even skip piling on the pounds during the holidays! We at consolidate times have compiled a handy checklist that will help you get started and stay motivated right into the New Year!

1. Do the research

You know all those times when you started on a mission to get fit and it did not work out? This time don’t allow that to happen. Load up on the information before you start so that you won’t get dispirited by minor bumps and plateaus. First you need to understand your body type and what routines will work best for you. A certified trainer can help you with that. Secondly, don’t fall for the fad diet craze. What works best for a health regimen is a nutritious, balanced diet that is designed keeping your body and your tastes in mind. Get all the information you can and then talk to your trainer about customising the diet that you know you can stick to. And be sure to include some basic life style changes that will help you on the journey to fitness.

2. Indulge in some shopping

Nothing perks you up quite like a good-intentioned round of shopping for yourself! You are getting ready for a new you – be sure you have the right outfit for it! A fitness routine can greatly benefit from proper tracking. Go ahead and buy that latest fitness tracker you have been lusting after! And while you are at it, invest in some brand new training apparel and shoes too. There is nothing like being fully equipped when you start off on a mission! Now you can guilt – read motivate – yourself to get out of bed when the alarm goes off in the morning without hitting snooze.

3. Set clear goals

You know this is just a beginning. So don’t think about dropping two dress sizes by Christmas. Discuss with your trainer what is do-able by New Year and stick to it. And then discuss the plan for after the New Year bashes. Setting realistic expectations and practical timelines will give you greater chances of sticking to the routine. Also, the small successes you encounter on the way will fuel you up for the longer ride ahead!

4. Find a partner in crime

If you have a like-minded partner to join you in this endeavour you have greater chances of sticking it out! Don’t try to enlist your entire friends’ circle – that could end up counterproductive. Find that one person who is as motivated as you and you can make sure neither suffers a slump as you take it one day at a time all the way to New Year’s!

5. Push yourself

Now that you have made a commitment, make sure you stick to it! Reminders on your phone, Post-Its on the fridge, public pledges in a family group, a couple of supporters who call up to enquire if you have worked out today – do everything it takes to prod you to go forward! Once you move past the initial phase, you will need less reminders and you can begin to take pride in yourself and your body.

Get started now and when everyone else is still thinking about New Year resolutions, you will find yourself miles ahead! Happy holidays!

Effective ways to prevent muscle injuries

You never know when a muscle injury may occur while working out. It may start as a discomfort, but if ignore – it can lead to extreme pain with a torn muscle. To ensure that you do not pull your muscle, it is prudent that you strengthen them and make sure you are prepared for any physical activity coming your way.

Here are some tips for helping you avoid most muscle injuries:

Practice eccentric training workouts

Muscle tears and hamstring injuries are common problems occurring during sports and other vigorous physical trainings. Recent studies have shown that practicing exercises such as Nordic-style Hamstring curls can help in prevention of uncertain muscle injuries. Such workouts help in training you muscles to regulate the tension and strength of the muscles while they are forced to elongate. This way any injury related to the muscles is avoided when the muscles are lengthened.

Keep track of your Vitamin D constituency in the body

Almost 70% of the popular around the world have shown cases of low vitamin D in the body. This can lead to extensive train your muscles. It has been seen that vitamin D helps in supporting the functioning of the muscles, for instance in protein synthesis and balancing electrolytes. Any person with unbalanced electrolytes can lead to muscle fatigue and premature injuries. And, without proper synthesizing of protein in the body, there is little chance of muscle tissue recovery. In addition, lack of vitamin D also deteriorates performance and strength. Therefore, it is prudent to maintain vitamin D in the body by keeping track of it.

Do not overstretch

Stretching the muscles of your body is a great warm-up that helps in improving one’s performance. However, extensive stretching leads to decrease in performance and overall muscle damage. Fitness coaches and instructors usually advice athletes not to stretch before a sports event as this could lead to uncertain muscle injuries. Sudden force on the muscles can lead to overexertion and eventually tear the muscle tissue if one is not careful. It would be prudent to perform light warm ups without over stretching the muscles.

Go for a screening that tests your functional movement

Modern methods of testing your movement in physical movement and muscle strength have welcomed a new screening strategy known as Functional Movement test where the fitness levels of athletes are monitored using a streamlined system. This screening activity helps in detecting states of fatigue in the body. The test also gives a score, which keeps track of the mobility of the person and indicate any possible weaknesses. When one takes such a screening for functional movement, it will show the way body uses muscles during a particular workout. Any discomfort will indicate chances of muscle injury.

While these methods can help in avoiding muscle injuries, there may still be an inevitable situation where athletes are unable to get past such injuries. In such cases, relax the tension of your muscle using a psoas stretch foam roller to relax the soreness.

StrategyDriven Practices for Professionals Article

The Best Business Cars for 2017

StrategyDriven Practices for Professionals Article
If there’s one thing we can say about 2017, it’s that it has been quite the year for cars. From an influx of supercars, to a whole new level of luxury in our everyday vehicles, the world of automobiles has done nothing but improve this year. But what about the selection of company cars on the market? Are there really any models available that make the perfect business car? Have Honda given us something to work with? Or Audi? You’ll have to read on to find out.

Mercedes E350e

As far as company cars go, you can very rarely go wrong with a Mercedes, and the E350e is definitely no exception. This car has all the luxury and comfort of the perfect company car, and if you want a posh-looking and feeling saloon car with feel-good factor by the bucket load, then this Mercedes E-class should be at the top of your list. With amazing ride quality and a plush and spacious interior, this plug-in hybrid is an environmentally friendly choice for your business car – and it runs smoothly too! What more could you want?

BMW 330e

BMW are certainly up there alongside a Mercedes in the fight for most popular executive cars. This BMW 3-series that we’re focusing on today, however, is definitely no exception to that rule. This compact saloon has a smart interior, classy look and all the high-end technology you could want. Factor in excellent handling and a powerful engine and you have a fun to drive, efficient and competitive company car. The rear-wheel drive gives balance to the handling, and with a comfortable yet firm suspension, the steering is undeniably accurate and weighty. And the infotainment system? Well, if you’re looking for a Sat Nav, active cruise control, climate control, DAB Radio and a Bluetooth phone connection and more then you’re in luck!

Renault Zoe

Okay, so this cute little electric vehicle is hardly your typical-looking company car, but don’t be fooled. This charming car is perfect for city driving and is relatively cheap to run, so if you’re on a budget, this really is the right model for you. It’s quiet and it’s easy to manoeuvre, so even new drivers can benefit from this car. The interior is just like the Renault Clio, so it’s modern and easy to use, and with a TFT display rather than dials, and an advanced infotainment system for an extra level of sophistication, this decently-spacious car is a nice little one to get around busy cities in!

Alfa Romeo Guilia

Alfa Romeo’s first attempt at an executive car is quite a valiant effort. While this car could be mistaken for yet another German-made executive saloon, the Alfa Romeo is definitely different. The Italian model has rear-wheel drive and a smooth and fluid ride. Nicely balanced handling makes this car user-friendly, something that is certainly lacking in many of its competitors. The interior features low-set seats and a fully adjustable steering wheel for optimum comfort, as well as the option to choose the right trim for your needs and desires. The infotainment system is controlled by a rotary controller, and displayed on an 8.8inch colour display. While the graphical quality isn’t the best, it does its job, though it can be a little difficult to navigate to start with due to its confusing menu. All in all, however, this car really has plenty to offer as an executive car, and is a strong first effort from Alfa Romeo.

StrategyDriven Practices for Professionals Article

5 Ways to Enjoy Your Break Time during a Long Day of Work

StrategyDriven Practices for Professionals Article

If you’re struggling through a hectic day at work, it’s likely that you’ll spend a lot of time dreaming about your next break. Taking regular breaks is a fantastic way to stay motivated and energized throughout the day. This is especially true if you’re using your break times effectively. When you’re planning your week ahead, make sure that you think about more than just the tasks that you want to complete. You should also consider how you’re going to get the most out of your free time. If you’re searching for inspiration, you’ll need to read on. Below are five ways to enjoy your break time, during a long day of work.

Socialize with Your Work Colleagues

Even if you already have a strong working relationship with your colleagues, it’s important that you use your break time to socialize with them. This is a great way to get to know everybody on a more relaxed level. Investing time and effort into your work place friendships will ensure that you always have someone to turn to for support and advice. It will also set you apart as someone who can strike the perfect balance between friendliness and professionalism.

Put in Your Headphones

It might not be the most social of options, but putting in your headphones is an easy way to escape the outside world. If you’re dealing with a particularly stressful day at work, you might be desperate for a little time out. Why not listen to a humorous podcast or hum along to an uplifting tune? This is a simple yet effective way to lift your spirits.

Try Meditation

You could also deal with a stressful day by enjoying a spot of meditation. This practice will help you to clear your mind and control your breathing. Even if you’re surrounded by chaos, meditation will help you to stay strong and centered. It will also allow you to put your problems into perspective.

Enjoy Vaping

If you love to vape, your break time could be the perfect opportunity for you to indulge. Just make sure that you find a suitable area that you can escape to. You should also make sure that you’ve invested in the appropriate vaping equipment. Why not visit to explore all of the options available?

Download Interesting Apps

You should also consider downloading interesting apps onto your technological devices. This is a fantastic way for you to enjoy your few free minutes. You could download a range of games that don’t take too long to complete. Alternatively, you could download apps that provide you with motivational quotes, random facts, brain teasers, or riddles. The important thing is to find apps that you look forward to engaging with. It will be much easier to get through a boring meeting or a large pile of work if you’re genuinely looking forward to your break time.

StrategyDriven Practices for Professionals Article

The Best Way to Improve Your Business Assignment

StrategyDriven Practices for Professionals Article
Photo courtesy of Green Chameleon via Unsplash

Assignment writing isn’t always the easiest of tasks for everyone. Sometimes writing our assignments can be difficult, or the words just won’t flow correctly but luckily there is plenty of help and advice out there to help get those good grades on your work. We’ve decided to take a look into some of the best ways to improve your assignments, so without further ado, here is our list.

Additional Reading

Improving the quality of your assignment can ultimately come down to extra reading. It’s likely that you’ve been given a reading list, but if you truly want your assignment to stand out, bringing in information from outside of the set reading will not only help you form a more strategic and believable argument, but it will show that you’ve done the extra work. Use the library in every way you can. Take out books, DVDs, journals and more, and use the quiet study area to truly concentrate on what the source is telling you.

Critical Thinking

Thinking critically about your assignment will be what takes you up those extra grades. Proving that you’re not just regurgitating information onto the page and are actually thinking it through will ultimately help you write a better assignment and argument. Understand the information to begin, apply it in some sense, and from there, analyse and conclude. Go that step further with your assignment. Even if you don’t need to include it in the final assignment, that critical thinking will help the knowledge settle in your mind as a whole.

Appropriate Language

As with any assignment, you need to be careful and precise about the language that you use. Avoid using personal pronouns as much as possible, and the right tense for your essay is another vital choice to make. Plain English and appropriate jargon and vocabulary for your assignment can take you from a basic assignment, to a business-specific, intelligent sounding assignment.

Read with Understanding

Reading is one of the best and most prominent ways to get information but to truly get information from reading, you have to read with understanding. By this, we mean reading and understanding what you’re reading. It can be tempting to skim over words and make notes that you don’t truly understand, but making the effort to truly ‘get’ what you’re reading can be the difference between grades, and a good and bad assignment. Make notes while you read, but don’t copy them word for word. Rewrite the information in your own words rather than just highlighting sections of text, and make summaries of each paragraph that you read.


Planning and outlining your assignment before you start writing it will help you form a better argument within your assignment. After gathering all of your materials you’ll need to think about how you’re going to complete the task and how it will be written. Outline your work by identifying any key facts or words that need to be in the text, adopt a structure if it’s relevant to the assignment, and in the case that you form an outline, expand on this even more. Write down what you’ll include in each paragraph or what isn’t relevant. Analyse your arguments before you write for a more precise piece of writing before you even begin.