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8 Epic Travel Experiences You Can’t Miss In Your Lifetime

8 Epic Travel Experiences You Can’t Miss In Your Lifetime

Traveling is a life-changing experience and once you get bitten by the bug it is hard to resist. Here are eight different experiences that you need to add to your bucket list now.

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    PS: Wikimedia Commons

    1. Climb Mount Kilimanjaro

    Ever dreamed of scaling a mountain? As the largest free-standing mountain in the world, Kilimanjaro is the ultimate travel adventure. With one of the most accessible summits, this majestic mountain in Africa graces many travelers’ lists. Trust me, you do not have to be a world-class athlete to make it to the top, you just need the right gear and a good dose of determination.

    800px-Rocks_and_surf_on_Goat_Rock_Beach

      PS: Wikimedia Commons

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      2. Road trip on California’s Highway One

      One of the USA’s most iconic drives along the Pacific Ocean, this is a road trip that should not be missed. Choose your starting point either in Northern California or Southern California and make sure you leave enough time for plenty of stops at roadside diners and for stunning coastal views. For an optimal California road trip experience, make sure to rent a convertible or an old VW van depending on your personal style.

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        PS: Wikimedia Commons

        3. Snorkel in Belize’s Blue Hole

        There are many beautiful places to snorkel, but Belize’s Blue Hole is one of the most unique places to do so. This natural phenomena is named after the blue circle that is created from the depth of the hole under the water’s surface. Although snorkeling is preferable in the shallower waters that surround the perimeter, it is a breathtaking experience that you will never forget.

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          PS: Wikimedia Commons

          4. Visit a city that spans two continents

          Istanbul is a city that never ceases to impress. Located on both Asia and European soil, this city has it all. Food, culture, history, nightlife, whatever your interests are, you are bound to find it here. Old traditions from the Ottoman Empire blend effortlessly with modern pursuits. Make sure to plan at least a week to take in this extensive destination and all it has to offer.

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            PS: Wikimedia Commons

            5. Go on a solo adventure abroad

            Traveling with friends and family can be great, but learning to travel by yourself is a life-changing experience. Not only will you be more receptive to talk with locals and other travelers, but you will learn the importance of self-reliance. If you have never been on the road alone, start small and close to home and then make plans to go abroad. It will be worth it, I promise.

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            800px-Safari_Tanzania

              PS: Wikimedia Commons

              6. Observe the Big Five in Tanzania

              This country with 16 game parks in total, including in the Serengeti, is the perfect place to experience Africa’s wildlife. Look out for the African lion, African elephant, Cape buffalo, African leopard and black/white rhino, among others. It is one thing to see animals on film, but a completely different experience to see them a few feet away.

              800px-The_northernlights_seen_from_Ulfarsfell_(small_mountain_in_Iceland)_26._November_2014.

                PS: Wikimedia Commons

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                7. Watch the Northern Lights in Iceland

                The Northern Lights are a perfect excuse to visit beautiful Iceland and witness one of nature’s best light shows all at once. The most important factor for optimal viewing is that there is complete darkness. The best time to view them in Iceland is from September to mid-April when there are guaranteed dark nights. A second recommendation for prime viewing is that you should stay at least a week, because the Northern Lights tend to be active for two to three nights and then lay low for four to five.

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                  8. Eat Your Way Through Japan

                  You may be familiar with Japanese food-sushi, ramen, udon and bento boxes, but there is so much more. In Japan, food is elevated to an art form, where cooks specialize in one type of dish and work on perfecting it over decades. From fresh sashimi at Tokyo’s famous Tsukiji’s Fish Market to kaiseki, a traditional Japanese multi-course meal, you will never get enough of Japan’s diverse food scene.

                  Featured photo credit: Flickr via flickr.com

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                  Last Updated on November 20, 2020

                  Kickstart Your Morning Workout With These 10 Simple Habits

                  Kickstart Your Morning Workout With These 10 Simple Habits

                  Benjamin Franklin said it like this: “Early to bed, early to rise, will make a man healthy, wealthy, and wise.” He knew from his own experiences and watching others that the ones who got up early were healthier and more successful. That’s why a morning workout can be so important.

                  One 2017 study found that:[1]

                  “after controlling for such factors as age, sex, smoking habits, and others…night owls, were found to have a 10 percent greater risk of dying from any cause compared to morning types.”

                  This is a great reason to tap into some morning motivation and get your morning workout done.

                  Circadian Rhythm for morning workout

                    As you can see in the above graph, your blood pressure begins to rise between 6 and 7 in the morning[2]. That means this is a great time to get your body moving and your heart pumping, even if it’s just for 20 minutes of exercise in the morning. 

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                    Here are some tips on how to find the motivation for a morning workout.

                    1. Remember Your Why

                    It starts with remembering why you want to get up for a morning workout. If you don’t set a goal and establish your reasons for accomplishing a health and fitness goal, then you definitely won’t get up early.

                    Getting up early isn’t easy. If it were, everyone would do it, right? Your goal for your health and fitness must be so strong, and the WHY behind it must be so powerful, that nothing will stop you from accomplishing that goal.

                    2. Go to Bed Early

                    If you want to get up early for a morning workout, it’s going to be important to get to bed earlier. Falling asleep at midnight and trying to get up at six just won’t work in your favor.

                    This will likely be very difficult for a few days while you adjust your sleeping habits. However, as you get into an exercise routine in the morning, this will naturally make it easier to fall asleep earlier and faster at night.

                    3. Make a Commitment

                    I sometimes tell my Facebook community of my plans to work out, and we all keep each other motivated by posting our runs, our workouts, etc. This is a way to develop accountability. By publicly announcing your intentions, you increase your chances of actually carrying out your plans.

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                    Another way to do this is to find an accountability partner who has similar goals for morning workouts. You can check in with each other to make sure you’re sticking to your plans. If that doesn’t work, hire a personal trainer for a few weeks to get you started.  

                    You can learn how to find a good accountability partner here.

                    4. Find a Friend

                    If you can find a friend that is motivated like you are, and you can hold each other accountable daily to working out, then you will accomplish your fitness goals. Many people prefer working out with friends to working out alone. Whether it’s a chat while hitting the treadmill at the gym, or having someone to spot you while weightlifting, working out with friends is sometimes just more enjoyable.

                    Texting each other the night before with a simple statement is best. Don’t ask: “Are we still working out in the morning?” With this kind of question, if they were thinking about not working out, you just gave them an opt out.

                    Make a statement instead: “Can’t wait to see you in the morning!” This implies that they will be there, and they will feel more obligated to show up.

                    5. Treat Yourself

                    We all have to treat ourselves every now and then. After a morning workout, plan to treat yourself with a colorful, healthy breakfast or a delicious morning smoothie. This will help you look forward to something and push through to the end of your workout.

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                    You can learn more on rewards and punishments here.

                    6. Change your Mindset

                    Many people throw away the idea of a morning workout by simply saying, “I’m not a morning person.”  Instead of using this excuse, decide to try to become a morning person by shifting your mindset.

                    When you look into the benefits of waking up early and getting some exercise in before your day starts, you’ll feel more positive about your life overall.

                    7. Plan Your Day

                    You know you’re going to be busy. Try time blocking to plan all the things you need to do on a given day, and make sure you add in your morning workout[3]. If you have a plan laid out, you’ll be more likely to follow it and get done everything on your list done.

                    Time blocking

                      8. Reflect on How You’ll Feel After

                      Starting a morning workout is hard, but visualizing how you’ll feel after can help you find motivation. Think about the extra energy you’ll have and how proud you’ll feel knowing that you were already so productive. No matter what you do the rest of the day, at least you squeezed in your exercise!

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                      For me, I live in an area where there are a lot of runners. When I am heading home in the evening or sitting out on the patio at one of my favorite restaurants, and I see the runners go by, it makes me feel so accomplished that I got mine in that morning and I can enjoy the evening.

                      9. Lay out Your Workout Clothes

                      Setting out your workout clothes the night before makes it impossible for you to start to run late because you couldn’t find something to wear. Tap into the determination you have before bed in order to convince your less-than-motivated morning self that you need to get up and get your morning workout in. When you wake up and see your outfit laid out next to you, it’ll push you to get up and get moving.

                      10.  Set Multiple Alarms

                      Many people miss their morning workout simply because they hit the snooze button so many times. In order to make this more difficult for yourself, set a series of alarms. That way, if you keep hitting snooze, you’ll have three or four alarms going off every ten minutes, which will be annoying enough to get you out of bed.

                      Also, put one alarm at least a few feet from your bed so that you’re forced to get up to turn it off.

                      Final Thoughts

                      About three years ago I went from being the person that says I will never be an early riser to a person that loves to get the day started as soon as possible. Without the distractions that begin to come around 8 or 9 in the morning, you’ll find that you’re more productive and more likely to squeeze in that morning workout.

                      Take some of the actions above and find the best morning workout routine to start your day and feel good.

                      More Tips on Morning Exercises

                      Featured photo credit: Tomasz Woźniak via unsplash.com

                      Reference

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