Cycling in Northumberland

Hi there Cycling Fans (and if you don’t cycle- you should)
I live in Northumberland, Hexham, in the UK. I tell anyone not from England, I don’t live that far from Scotland. Northumberland does look a lot like the highlands, and the cycling is awesome. The long smooth country roads that blend into the hills, the Tyne, Hadrians Wall, and farm land. A lot of the time, it’s so quiet I can normally cheekily put my headphones in (probably not the best idea in busy traffic) and sink into that ‘cycling zone’.










This is my 50 mile route below:







This ride was about 50 miles. It wasn’t a race; I can even remember the time it took me in. Average speed on the flat was about 20mph; fastest on the flat was 27mph, fastest on the hill 40 mph, and I couldn’t tell you what the speed was up hill. I had a few breaks, met some farmers, and took in the fantastic views.  I’ve tried to give you as many stats as I can- but please accept this post to be more adventurous rather than competitive.

The first half is downhill for about 3 miles, but then is practically all up hill. Let’s just say- it’s a good warm up. I’m thankful for my carbon forks on my bike. I’m not the most natural of cyclists (6ft 2, and an athletic build) so I’ll take everything I can get, within sensible pricing! This is me at the top of the hill:











Once we’re at the top of the hills, coming back down from point A and onwards was a lot of fun- most of these roads were built by the Romans- meaning they are dead straight, 14% gradients, minimal traffic and you can really build some speed up. I managed to do 40 mph through one of the hills coupled with a strong head wind, and I find that I also start to shake at that speed through body positioning, and concentration. Just watch out for the sheep! Coming through the tops to Haydon Bridge is fun, but unfortunately fun cycling always has its price. I had to join the main A69 road for a couple of miles (lots of fast cars) and then go back over the tops through Low Gate on my way back to Hexham which is about 5 miles of constant uphill. Good for training your legs though.
As I make my way through into Hexham and Corbridge it’s all straight shooting, taking the bike into a mid-gear and taking up a nice pace of around 20mph. I made my way over the Tyne Bridge at Hexham which is quite the view in its own right:

bridge1 bridge2
This is what I love about Northumberland. It’s not crowded by people, and the beauty is kept protected by the people that live here. Northumberland has quite the people retention rate- it seems to me that people leave, but somehow always end up back here. I’ve cycled the UK Coast to Coast, in Amsterdam, in France, and in Ireland, but somehow it just doesn’t have the same feeling as cycling here- it’s got that personal ‘back yard playground’ feel. Living in Hexham town, or spending your time in the nearest city, Newcastle upon Tyne, you sometimes forget the detached countryside out here.
Going past Corbridge, I make my way towards Stocksfield, Mickley, and finally Prudhoe. I had a quick break here- I love cereal bars when I cycle, and I always keep them in the pockets of my cycling jersey. I fuelled up with some water from the petrol station. Prudhoe has a huge hill that is more long and steady rather than short and steep. It’s one of those hills where you take a higher gear stand up pedal hard, and then sit back down right at the back of the seat and really feel the burn in your quads in one gear lower. The ride back to my hometown is a lot easier, being mostly downhill to start with straighter sections. Having a quick break before returning home:
Where did I get my bike? Where did I get my shoes? Where did I get my components? Where did I get my kickass yellow helmet? Merlin Cycles is your one stop bike shop. They have provided me some of the best Continental wheels and components for my Giant bike, and stop me from cracking my head open if I did ever fall off.

Excellent Self Help Advice That’s Easy To Follow


You’ll be able to change your lifestyle forever and for the better once you change the means you think, here is the start with regards to personal development. This short article outlines a number of easy ways you can work on your own improvement along with improve your life.

Unfortunately, stress is a reasonably killjoy to a person’s state of contentment and delight. When strain happens in the brain, it also has detrimental influences on our own physical health. We all need to have clear, relaxed pondering to enable people to plan as well as execute our life’s objective, and this only happens when we all let go of tense thoughts. Make time in your current schedule on a daily basis to take a few moments alone as well as clear your mind. Having this occasion every day could make you more tranquil and satisfied with yourself.

Regardless of the surroundings, you need to be ready to record ideas once they come to mind. Bring pens and paper along at all times. Whenever an idea hits, write it down, and when your brain cells start flowing later, you are able to act onto it.

Authority is the foundation of personal advancement. Leadership can be defined in many ways, but most folks like to establish it as influence. Carefully examine your own the thing it leadership. Exactly what events possess impacted the particular most in your own life? What changes did people events create in you? Exactly what attributes allow you to a good team player? When it’s possible to answer these questions, you know how to join in on a team.

Accept the limitations prior to engaging in personal development. You need to know which in the fantastic scheme of things, your problems are extremely insignificant. When this idea becomes instilled in your mind, you will want to realize, understand as well as learn new things, therefore, bettering yourself.

Have a rainy day fund. Lots of people think that credit cards counts as an emergency account. You can start no more than a few dollars every single payday to be able to start building your emergency funds fund. That fund can certainly help in both the future and short-run as financial debt goes down.

Strive to boost daily in order that each one is much more perfect compared to previous. You must never stop trying to figure out ways to do things better, and much better yourself. Try your toughest to achieve something else entirely today compared to what you achieved yesterday.

Arrange a meeting to speak with a counselor. These people possess experience managing many of the items you may be going through, and many are licensed to take action. You will find that they’re eager to notice what you have to say and determine your situation so that will more your personal progress. Discussing your current problems in a safe environment with a licensed professional, really can make all the difference and leave a person feeling far better. Ultimate joy may lie in presuming a manageable amount of threat. Many people be in their convenience zones in order to avoid rejection or perhaps failure, so they really aren’t as happy as well as fulfilled. Trying something risky indicates braveness, which is a trait that will help you uncover true pleasure.

You want a good frame of mind for personal growth. Having a damaging attitude is only going to hold a person back and you from achievement. The best thing to accomplish is to continue to be positive, as well as realize that keeping a positive frame of mind, can aid anyone in achieving your goals.

Self-improvement goals that improve your health can improve a great many other areas of your daily life. When they are throughout good healthful they will feel good. Your mind will be less over cast, and you can even gain more spare time and eliminate expenses because you won’t need to look at the doctor as often. Having a healthful life needs to be one of your main goals.

Should you are constantly having difficulty assembly your goals, take a step back to evaluate what’s going on. Certain that your and find others whom reveal similar objectives with you to see what they are carrying out compared to your work. You might learn that your aim is way too high, you are missing something, otherwise you are not placing enough with it.

No matter the number of tips you use, you can become more energized in direction of your personal envelopment path. Developing your personality takes a large amount of effort, however that you know what sort of effort is necessary, you can get into it with gusto.

This guest blog is given by Tim Herman. He is one of the many writers on fitness and health niche. For more info regarding SizeGenetics, explore website.

Starting a Sporting Program in Your School

sportingSports are an excellent outlet for young people to highlight their talents and give them an activity that is productive and educational. Additionally, participating in sports can increase self-confidence, provide opportunities to create life-long friendships and stay physically active and fit. If your school is lacking a sporting program there are steps you can take to get one started. Of course each school may differ slightly; there are some basic steps to follow to get a sporting program up and running in your school.

Step 1: Create a plan. This can include things such as:

  • How you plan to fund the program
  • The teacher sponsors that are involved
  • What sports you plan to incorporate
  • Student interest

Step 2: Ensure you have at least two or three sponsors from the school in question that will provide guidance, coaching or support for the sports you choose to have. The fact is you will not be able to do everything in the beginning. Pick a few sports that receive the most interest and go from there.

Step 3: Pitch your idea to the person or committee who is responsible for approving or rejecting the program. This may be the principal, school board or other committee. Keep in mind, you may have to start at the bottom and work your way up to the deciding individuals. Ensure you have your plan specific to show exactly how the program will be established and managed, which will help ensure approval.

Step 4: Once the sporting program is approved you can begin purchasing supplies and having fundraisers. Some of the supplies you will need to acquire include:

  • Sporting equipment: This will be dependent on the sports you plan to incorporate in the new sports program.
  • Sports clothing: This may include items such as padding, custom jerseys, helmets and shoes.
  • Practice areas: You need designated areas for students who wish to participate to practice and have games.

Step 5: Find the right coaches and individuals to run the program. A great program will be successful if you can find the right people to work for it. Hiring a good coaching and referee staff will make a difference in the program’s success.

Implementing a sporting program at you school is a great way to get involved and make a difference. These programs can give students an outlet to participate in something they love and learn the benefits that come with playing on a team. There is no limit to the number of sports that can be included in your sporting program. In the beginning this number will likely be limited by the funds you have available. It is a good idea to get parents involved in fundraisers in order to continue adding new sports to your program and being able to reach out to even more students. The key to successfully creating a sporting program at your school is taking the proper steps and ensuring that every need of the program is adequately addressed.

Win-Win situation when you own a pair of special edition Asics GT-1000’s


The Asics GT-1000 running shoes ensure that you have a sound mind and sound body. The Asics GT-1000 PR shoes are a special edition release that truly embodies the philosophy of keeping you sound and comfortable while jogging or running. The shoe features a host of exclusive designs and technologies, setting it apart from everything else, and making it the most decorated and most revered shoe on the market.

The GT series are newly reborn, revitalized, and enhanced to give you all the stability, performance, fit, and cushioning you have come to expect from Asics running shoes. They are sleeker and more refined with flexible, lightweight construction to keep an undeniable sense of speed from heel to toe. These special edition Asics Pink Ribbon shoes have rear and forefoot gel cushioning, discrete heel units, and a host of trademarked systems including Full Length Guidance Line. They also feature seamless upper construction.

These advanced technologies have earned the GT-1000 the official seal of acceptance from the American Podiatric Medical Association. The new GT series ensures that your environment conforms to you and not the other way around. The heel even conforms to the shape of your foot for a customized fit and maximized comfort. Many owners have said they have a hard time taking them off even after they’re done running.

Asics Pink Ribbon shoes come decked out in a powerfully pink color set up—sure to get you noticed when you take them out for a spin. However, these Asics running shoes aren’t just a pretty face. During Breast Cancer Awareness Month, Asics is supporting the fight against breast cancer by donating $2 for every special edition shoe sold. The company has pledged to donate a minimum of $75k up to a maximum of $100k.

All special edition Asics running shoes feature black satin laces and the iconic pink Breast Cancer Awareness Ribbon is embroidered on the heel collar. This is done to ensure the shoe gets its message across. Everyone including yourself will know what the shoe represents, and you will have the opportunity to encourage others to support the cause as well.

Putting on a pair of GT- 1000 PR’s will put you on the way to a sound mind because just by purchasing an already amazing running shoe that has won 12 runners awards in the past 14 years, you are helping millions of at-risk women enjoy a bright future.

Muscle Pain

If you’re experiencing muscle pain, there are a variety of treatment methods you can consider. Options like foam rollers therapy or a massage ball for runners can minimize or eliminate pain.

Common Causes of Muscle Pain
A variety of injuries or conditions can cause muscle pain. Overexerting a muscle during exercise or sports participation can result in muscle strain that can vary from light soreness to debilitating pain. This is perhaps the most common cause of muscle pain, but conditions like fybromyalgia, myofascial pain syndrome and rhabdomyolsis can do the same.

A variety of treatment options for muscle pain due to strain exist. Foam rollers for muscle pain are long plush tubes that offer some relief and benefits you get from a sports massage, but you can use them on your own at home for mild to moderate muscle pain.

The injured person can use his or her weight to gently apply pressure to the myofascial tissue in the affected area to soothe tight tissue, increase blood flow and circulation and help separate tissue that has bonded or “stuck” together because of an issue. This is best performed in later stages of treatment, after the injured area has been well-rested.

Foam rollers therapy may be prescribed between physical therapy sessions for daily in-home treatment or when sports massage is not available. It’s a common technique used to treat shin splints, IT band syndrome and to increase range of motion and flexibility even in the absence of muscle pain. Foam rollers therapy allows the ability to trigger and customize certain muscle groups depending on the body position and type of stretch.

Another treatment option for muscle pain is a massage ball for runners. This type of treatment tool allows a runner or anyone else to truly target specific muscles in the foot, legs, or forearms. A massage ball for runners comes in a variety of sizes and materials for your particular needs.

You can combine the ball and foam rollers for muscle pain for a treatment that works best for you, or alternate them to soothe different muscle groups. Both items are a great asset for runners, athletes and anyone who needs some muscle pain relief or to increase range of motion.


Babolat AeroPro


Following years of trying to find free time to take up tennis, I was finally able to and I fell in love with the game right away. However, to seriously fuel my obsession I needed some equipment. A good friend of mine and avid tennis player pointed me to the Babolat AeroPro racquet series, several of which he currently uses. After using his Babolat Pure Drive 107 over the past few months, I’m fully convinced Babolat is the absolute best racquet out there, no questions asked, and once I found out that the new 2013 line was soon to be released I’m determined to be first in line.

The best aspect of the Babolat AeroPro series is that they offer a progressive line of racquets to fully accommodate your skill and experience level, whether you are a complete beginner or a seasoned professional. The series begins with the Babolat AeroPro Lite 2013, continues to the more intermediate Babolat AeroPro Team 2013 and finally lands on the guaranteed-to-be-impressive Babolat AeroPro Drive 2013.

The Babolat AeroPro Lite 2013 is perfect for beginners and anyone that wants to work on creating a consistent swing path. It’s aerodynamic frame and the addition of Active Cortex technology, which reduces vibration, makes this racquet lighter and allows a smoother swing to the ball than its predecessor.

The Babolat AeroPro Team 2013 is a racquet that provides the ideal combination of light weight and smoother swing capability for beginners or smaller statured people but also its greater power for more advanced players due to its stiffer beam and Woofer string technology that helps the string move more freely so that they retain their energy longer. There simply isn’t a better racquet for those striving to the top of their game to use.

Finally, the Babolat AeroPro Drive 2013 is the most popular and best made racquet produced by Babolat; a fact echoed by Rafael Nadal’s use of it all over the world. The Drive 2013 is geared toward more advanced players because of its greater weight, stiffer layout and easy power generation. This racquet provides the greatest amount of spin of the series due its vibration free frame; no other racquet creates a better heavy ball off serve.

After using their previous racquets, as well as others from other companies, I definitely have to conclude that there isn’t any set of racquets that can match the Babolat AeroPro’s smooth play action and power as well as spin generation especially since their addition of the Active Cortex and Woofer technologies. They’re simply the best.

Racquetball racquets

Love the sport of racquetball? Finding a great and easy to use racquetball racquet is one of the most important aspects in playing a quick and great game to the best of your ability. There are hundreds of racquetball racquets available for both professional and every day players. Here are the top choices that are a great option for all:

1. Extelon racquetball racquet:
The Extelon racquetball racquet focuses on maintaining a lightweight design with easy grip and O3 swing speed, making it easy to power away with the racquet. The super wide body frame and its quadraform headshape are perfect for giving you room to hit and aim wherever you’d like.

2. HEAD racquetball racquet:

The HEAD racquetball racquet focuses on powerful technology in order to get the best performance possible. With a teardrop frame shape and a Hydrosorb grip, you’re going to feel comfort while gripping and hitting with the racquet. What makes this racquet special is also its Innegra high performance fiber, which is the lightest high performance material available. You’ll get control, comfort and power with this racquet.

3. Gearbox racquetball racquet:

With the Gearbox racquetball racquet, you’ll get a lightweight performance power with sharp detailing. Graphite is included in this racquet in order to maintain a light weight for great play. Its ultra wide head shape is unlike any other and offers room for maximum play with insane power and room to control. Its String Dimples are another great feature made to avoid any angles or harsh strings from affecting your game.

4. E-Force racquetball racquets:

The E-Force racquetball racquets is constantly updated and maintained to keep you playing well. High Octane Boosters are added to this racquet in order to give you explosive power and center shots that shoot far out in the air. The Quadraform offers extra comfort and incredible grip for a game that is excellent.

Check out these high-rated and top-performance popular racquetball racquets in order to highly improve your game speed, quality and force. You’ll see a major difference in your games and feel comfort while playing your very best no matter where you’re at.

Guest Post > The Key to Staying Fit: 6 Top Desk Exercises

If you’re like most people in today’s working world, it’s tough to find time to exercise. Between meetings and family time and social events, there never seems to be enough time in the day.


Well, folks – we’re here to change that. The truth is that there are many exercises that can be done at work and while sitting at your desk – and no one even has to know you’re doing them! Here are a few of our favorite top desk exercises to help keep you in shape, even if you don’t have the time.


Take the stairs – Seems simple, right? But with a briefcase, paperwork, and coffee in your hand, the elevator probably looks a lot more tempting. Next time you have the choice between the two, opt for the stairs. You’ll get a short cardio workout in and will strengthen your legs in the process.


Take a walking lunch break – Forget sitting at your desk or grabbing fast food during your lunch hour. Instead, pack a healthy meal from home (think fruits, veggies, and whole grains), and head out for a walk around the neighborhood.


Chair dips – While seated, plant your feet firmly on the floor and place your hands on the armrests of your chair. Scoot up so your bottom is on the edge of your seat, then slowly lift your body off the chair and hold for five seconds. Return to a seated position and repeat five times.


Core strengthener – While sitting on the edge of your chair, stretch your arms out in front of you with your fingers pointing across the room. Focus on keeping your back straight, contract your abdominal muscles, and relax. Repeat five times.


Wing flap – This is one of the few that may look silly to a coworker passing by, so if you’re not comfortable, we’d recommend waiting until you get home. To do this pose, stretch your arms up and back so your hands are floating behind your head. Hold for five seconds, then bring them to the front of your body, hold for five seconds, and repeat.


Curls – While seated at your desk, cross your arms across your chest and focus on making sure your posture is straight. Flex your abdominal muscles and push your shoulders forward toward your hips. Hold the pose for five seconds, and repeat 10 times. Note: This is similar to the cat pose in yoga, but in this case, you’re seated.


Keep these simple exercises in mind next time you think a workout is hard to come by. They’ll have you feeling great in no time flat!


You can find more information and helpful tips on at-desk yoga in this resource guide:


About the Author:
Patty Englebaugh founded in 1993. She has 19
years of experience installing ergonomic office furniture and computer accessories that create healthy work environments in home and corporate offices as well as in the healthcare, education, government, and business sectors. Call her today (Mon-Fri 8-6pm EST) for one-on-one support for your ergonomic needs: (877) 971-0151.

Finding a Good Price for Asics Kayano 17 Running Shoes

Runners are notoriously fussy about their shoes, but since experts recommend that runners replace their shoes every three to four months, finding a good deal on a quality shoe is also a priority. For example, the Asics Kayano 17 is a gel-based running shoe highly rated by many athletes and the Asics Kayano 17 on sale is a common sight online or in stores.

About the Asics Kayano 17

The Asics Kayano 17 shoe is made out of both mesh and synthetic material with a rubber sole. The shoe has a “ComforDry” sock liner for those who prefer to run without socks and includes a guidance line, impact system and a space trusstic system. The heel appearance is minimized externally while offering good support and comfort internally.


Customers like the Asics Kayano 17, giving the shoe an overall four and ½ stars out of five. One person noted that the heel cushion absorbed more impact than other shoes and the shoes are overall “super comfortable.”

Another reviewer raved that the Kayano 17 is the “best running shoe” thanks to excellent cushioning and good fit in the heel and toe.

However, other customers dislike the lacing system since it angles down towards the big toe instead of continuing in a straight line on the center of the shoe. One person complained that the laces were too tight, leaving bruises on his toes.
In addition, a few other users pointed out that the material seems to wear out quickly, necessitating another shoe purchase before it was originally expected.

Purchase Information

For those seeking low price Asics Kayano 17, many online retailers and sports stores have the shoes available online. Do a search for “discount Asics running shoes” or “Asics Kayano 17 on sale” to find web results that feature current sale prices or discounts.

Another option is to watch local sports or running stores for sales and purchase the shoes there. Ask the customer service representative if the offered price is a low price Asics Kayano 17 for that store or if you should wait for another sale, since not all shoe brands may be on sale at the same time.

Be sure to ask for a fitting as well, since many runners find that their typical shoe size is not their running shoe size, regardless of the name brand. In fact, you can often avoid injury by getting the next size up from your usual size to allow for extra room in the toe box, which lets your feet grip the shoe (and the road) more comfortably.

Generally, most discount Asics running shoes should run between $35.00 and $140.00. However, if you are looking for a low price Asics Kayano 17, look for prices between $75.00 and $140.00.

Always do your research, look around for the best price online, and in local stores for the shoe before you purchase. In addition, if you have never worn Kayano 17 shoes before, buy from a store or website that offers a return policy in case these just are not the running shoes for you.


Grand Slam 2012

For many years now, I have watched major tennis Grand Slam events like the US Open with careful consideration. While I was growing up I had played tennis in high school, and hoped to someday make it a career option. While there are so few major professional tennis stars, unlike other professional sports, I realized early on that this was not going to be an easy thing to do.

I got a scholarship to play tennis at the collegiate level, and spent two seasons playing for the Mountaineers of West Virginia University. However, an off season knee injury in preparation for the athletic demands of the coming year would keep me from competing the rest of my time in Morgantown. At times, I could close my eyes and see myself up there competing at tennis Grand Slam events with the greats I grew up watching and idolizing like Agassi, Sampras and Federer.

So when I had to put these aspirations of mine on the shelf, the only comfort that I could really find was in watching the professional events throughout the year. The Grand Slam tennis competitions were a good example, offering a chance to experience severely competitive play throughout the year on four specific stages. Of course, my favorite was the US Open.

While I have yet to be able to afford to go to any Grand Slam tennis event in person, I have not missed the US Open coverage in several years now. While the other slams of the year have come and gone, my other favorite Wimbledon being one of them, this is the final major tennis event to look forward to in 2012.

I remember last year watching all of the tennis Grand Slam winners like Novak Djokovic take the Men’s singles title. He was only one of a few tennis Grand Slam winners last year as Sam Stosur took home the title for the singles competition for the women. I am actually delighted to see which players have what it takes to beat out the competition this time around.

I would have to say that the person with the best chance of walking away the winner this year in New York is Roger Federer. For some time his primary competition for the title was last year’s victor Djokovic. With his recent defeat of Djokovic in the Cincinnati Masters tournament, sources are all but guaranteeing Federer is able to take the title when they both head to New York. I myself, and many others following tennis closely, feel that the singles competition will narrow down to these two men again.

In fact, Roy Burton of has been quoted as saying “With Rafael Nadal on the shelf indefinitely due to tendinitis in his left knee, a Federer-Djokovic U.S. Open final almost seems like a foregone conclusion. And if that happens, expect Federer to emerge with his 18th career Grand Slam title.”