How to Shop for Good Quality Cooking Knives

When I am shopping for knives, there is always the question about quality and how much I have to pay for good quality. What I have seen is that you can pay a little amount of money for good quality and you can pay a lot of money for poor quality, hence it is a concern. The purpose for the knife should be the main concern. A professional chef needs to purchase a top quality kitchen knife set and also a large quantity of them. The regular house hold, and mainly a beginner in the kitchen does not need the high quantity of knives but still needs a good set of high quality kitchen cutlery. This is where you don’t need to spend as much money.
The benefit of growing your knife set is that it allows you to experiment with different brands. If you are like me, I like certain brand name knives for certain jobs. There are several stores that will allow you to come in and test out different knife brands before you purchase. Before I purchase anything for my kitchen that requires a substantial outlay of funds, I try to test the product in order to ensure it is what I indeed needed.
When looking at choosing kitchen knives make sure you purchase a knife with a superior blade. The best material for kitchen knife blades is carbon steel, ceramic and titanium in that order. All of these materials hold a sharp edge over a period of time. Ceramic knives are incredibly sharp and easy to clean although a bit fragile. Carbon steel is incredibly durable and withstands a lot of use and abuse however can turn colors over time. Titanium is a great material but often a bit tougher on the pocket book.

There will be advantages and disadvantages to all material used in knives. I do prefer ceramic for paring knives as they do the delicate work wonderfully but when slicing through a big chuck of meat I would take carbon steel every time.

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How to Motivate Yourself to Workout After Work

While I LOVE to exercise, there are several instances where I really just don’t feel like working out (even though I should). Let’s face it, after a long day of work, sitting on the couch, surfing the net and vegging out sound so much more appealing than tackling the gym.

While I wish I could workout in the morning, it’s just not an option for me. My inability to get to bed before 11 p.m sometimes gets the best of me, which makes working out in the morning even more difficult than the evening.

So how is one supposed to get motivated to workout after a long day, especially when it’s the last thing you want to do? Well my friends, it is definitely easier said than done, but it IS doable and is DOES get easier, I promise!

If you know that you need to workout, but sometimes lack that extra push, then I suggest you try these 5 simple tips to help you get motivated to workout AFTER work.

1) Take a Class or Get a Buddy

Working out with other people who are excited to workout is contagious. When you exercise alone, you really need to dig deep for that intrinsic motivation that is sometimes missing after a long and stressful day. If you belong to a gym, checkout some of the classes that they offer such as Zumba, BodyPump or Barre.

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Alternatively, you can work out with a partner such as a friend, co-worker or significant other. Group support is powerful and keeps you accountable.

2) Pack Your Clothes

The night before you go to work, pack a bag with all of your clothes, sneakers, towel, water etc. This will enable you to go straight to the gym directly after work, versus having an excuse to go home. Once you go home to change, you may be tempted to just stay home and avoid working out all together.

If you must go home, because your gym is in your building or in your home, then try to avoid sitting or starting any other errands that are staring you in the face. Create a habit of changing immediately, and you will be less likely to skip your workout.

3) Schedule, Schedule, Schedule!

Schedule your workouts into your calendar just as you would any other important appointment. You wouldn’t cancel on a doctor’s appointment that you had on your calendar for months, so treat your exercise dates the same way.

4) Sign up for a Race

Nothing motivates me more than signing up for a race. Most of the races I do are to benefit a great charity, which makes me feel like my run is meaningful.

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Don’t worry if running is not your thing because not all races involve running. There are several walk-a-thons, mud runs, bicycle races and much more. Find out what you like and invite your friends and family to participate or come watch!

5) Change Your Outlook

Instead of dreading  exercising after work, try to look forward to it. Working out is something GOOD that you are doing for your body. It is something that gives you control over your health and well-being, and helps you to unwind, destress and have some “me time”.

While at work, try to think to yourself I can’t wait until my workout! Instead of  Ugh, I don’t believe I have to workout after this. Most of what we do it 90% mental. If you anticipate having a great workout all day, then you will most likely enjoy it and will be less likely to skip it.

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