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6 Simple Gift Ideas for A Young Couple

6 Simple Gift Ideas for A Young Couple

One of the trickiest sets of people to go shopping and conjure up gift ideas for! What do you buy a young couple who have more disposable income than they can shake a stick at? No children, no hefty mortgage, just each other, and most likely the majority of materialistic items and little luxuries they could possibly desire – and that’s without contemplating the need for the gift to be unisex!

Of course this is a massive generalization but a predicament that I’m sure most people who have found themselves on this post, after frantically searching Google for a good few hours have experienced.

1. Vouchers

Now this one you really can’t go wrong with. Vouchers are the perfect way to show you have put some thought into the gift and haven’t just opted for the easy option of giving money. However, it also leaves it open enough for the recipient to choose something they really want. There are numerous different voucher options readily available on the market, which can create a bit of a minefield when it comes to choosing which one to get!

The first thing to consider is the person who you are giving to – what are their interests? What are their hobbies? What would they consider a treat?

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Once you’ve established these initial pointers you should have a better idea of where to head first. Something you most certainly can’t go wrong with is a holiday! Who doesn’t like a holiday? Now this doesn’t mean you have to go booking an all-inclusive week in the Mediterranean, you can instead just make a small gesture which will help towards them booking that first getaway together. Holidays are a very personal thing so try to keep it as broad as possible.

A lovely idea is to purchase a voucher towards a stay in a cozy cottage or apartment ideal for two, Cornwall is a perfect example of a location exuding both relaxation and romance! If the couple are more of the quirky kind, then you could instead provide a voucher for a yurt or a glamping pod – a novel take on alternative UK accommodation. A holiday voucher also makes a great opportunity to collaborate with other family members or friends to push up the value of the overall gift.

Another fault-proof voucher idea is of the edible kind! You really can’t go wrong with food. This is also a great way to demonstrate you’ve really given it some thought. Purchase a voucher for their favorite tea room, café, or restaurant so they can indulge on your behalf.

Have your recipients recently moved into their first home? For many young couples, this is either the case, or most definitely on the cards sometime soon. A voucher for a large homeware or department store will allow them to start kitting out their new pad to their own tastes.

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Last but not least, is a simple cinema voucher! Allow the couple to rekindle that first date romance by heading out to watch a film and consume too much popcorn.

2. Hamper

If you are feeling crafty, then this can be a fun project for you. A hamper is a good choice as you can tailor it to the exact requirements of the couple you are making it for. All you need is a large, plain wicker basket and then the content to go inside is completely your choice.

Head to your local charity shop and select some miss-matched vintage china, pair it with some cutlery, add scones, cream, jam, and strawberries and you have yourself a delightful cream tea hamper. If you want to make it that extra bit special, you could also head to your local farm shop and select some other goodies such as crackers, cheese, chutneys, and crisps to turn it into more of an exquisite picnic.

Do the couple you’re buying for, just need an excuse to take a step back from everyday tasks and enjoy a night of relaxation? If this is true, then pack them up their very own ‘movie night in’. Select a few DVDs (classics, rom-coms, and horrors are fairly safe choices), choose some indulgent snacks and refreshments such as popcorn, chocolate, sweets, and a bottle of wine ‒ you could also even add some extra special bubble bath and a few scented candles.

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3. Overnight Baby-sitting

If the couple you are buying for has a young child, then this can seem like the most simple of ideas to you, yet to the recipient it can be the best gift they receive! Get creative on your computer and put together a personalized voucher offering your baby sitting services for one night – providing them with some well-deserved time out to spend how they wish.

4. Experience Day

This is for the more adventurous and fun-loving couple! There are a whole host of websites out there these days offering experience days in just about everything and anything; from high tea at a castle to a hot air balloon ride ‒ you think of it, they can probably provide it. Now this makes your job very easy, have a scroll through a website such as Virgin Experience Days, filtering the features to ‘gifts for couples’ and select an experience you think they would both love. A truly unique idea and something anyone would love to receive.

5. Illustration of Their House

Notonthehighstreet is a fantastic place to start when faced with a difficult gift buying scenario. They offer wonderfully unique products from all spectrum of the market allowing you to choose something that little bit different. A lot of young couples will have just moved into their first house together, so why not get a hold of a photo of said house and have it created into a perfectly posed illustration for them to proudly hang on their wall.

6. Travel-Related Items

Does the couple you’re buying for, love to travel? Do they have a serious case of wanderlust? Then why not cater to this with your gift-giving. Either have a quick scour online where you will be able to pick up a large world map, then all you need to do is buy a frame large enough to comfortably and securely accommodate the map. When putting the map inside the frame you want to, however, ensure you remove the pane of glass. Wrap the framed map up with a little bag of drawing pins and small note instructing them to place a pin whenever they travel to a new location.

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Alternatively, you can assist with their travel planning. There are endless amount of fun books for people yearning to travel and explore new places such as 36 Hours 125 Weekends in Europe, so why not choose a few and wrap them up together to give them some inspiration and help send them on their way.

Featured photo credit: Gopix Database via gopixdatabase.com

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Last Updated on August 15, 2018

7 Amazing Things That Will Happen When You Do Plank Every Day

7 Amazing Things That Will Happen When You Do Plank Every Day

Bodyweight exercises are gaining ground in the fitness world due to the practicality and simplicity of getting in shape using your own body weight. Planks are one form of bodyweight exercises that will never go out of fashion. Planks are one of the most effective exercises you can do. Why? Because they require a small time investment on your part, and offer the chance to achieve substantial results in a relatively short span of time.

Video Summary

Why is it important to train up our core strength?

There are numerous sites and blogs which detail ways to build your core muscles or core strength. Often though, these sites neglect to explain what your core muscles actually are, and why building them is important.

This is quite surprising, as core muscles are quite easy to explain. Your core muscles are a series of muscles in your midsection, and are used in most forms of movement. Though they aren’t housed in your arms or legs, your core muscles can help transfer force from one limb to another, or are used in addition to muscles in your arms or legs to increase their effectiveness. As such a strong core will make a big improvement on your ability to move and exercise further.

Also they are great for helping other muscles in your midsection such as your abdominal muscles. Your abdominal muscles are important for supporting your back and spinal column, and as such are important aids in preventing injuries. However for them to be most effective you need to spend a lot of time developing your core muscles.

In short, planking exercises can make a huge improvement in your muscles down your whole body. Making them a hugely effective exercise to perform.

One Exercise, multiple benefits

There are few forms of exercise as effective at building your core as planking exercises. However, planking exercises benefit far more than just your core strength.

By holding yourself in the position for a planking exercise, you’ll notice that your biceps, neck, and shoulder muscles are also being tested and strained. This this encouraging their buildup and development. This is great news if you like to do press ups, developed shoulder muscles will have a big impact on your press up performance.

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When planking, you are holding yourself up through your arms and biceps and so by holding a planking position, your arm muscles are being toned and developed. Making planking a great alternative exercise to other forms of bicep developing exercises.

Moving down your midsection, successful plank exercises actually develop the muscles in your butt! These muscles tend to be ignored by a lot of exercises, so this is another great benefit of plank exercises.

In much the same way as you develop your biceps and arm muscles, holding the planking position helps develop the muscles in your thighs too.

What is even better is that planking exercises don’t take much time at all. In fact you should probably only spend about ten minutes max per day in the planking exercise.

What will happen when you start doing planks every day

    1. You’ll improve core definition and performance: 

    Planks are an ideal exercise for the abdominal muscles exactly because they engage all major core muscle groups including the transverse abdominus, the rectus abdominusthe external oblique muscle, and the glutes. The importance of strengthening each muscle group cannot be underestimated either, for all of these groups serve their own purpose. If you strengthen these muscle groups you will notice:

    • Transverse abdominis: increased ability to lift heavier weights.
    • Rectus adbominis: improved sports performance, particularly with jumping. This muscle group is also responsible for giving you the renowned six pack look.
    • Oblique muscles: improved capacity for stable side-bending and waist-twisting
    • Glutes: a supported back and a strong, shapely booty.

    2. You’ll decrease your risk of injury in the back and spinal column

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      Doing planks is a type of exercise that allow you to build muscle while also making sure that you are not putting too much pressure on your spine or hips. According to the American Council on Exercise, doing planks regularly not only significantly reduces back pain but it also strengthens your muscles and ensures a strong support for your entire back, especially in the areas around your upper back.

      Check out this article if you would like to find out about how doing planks on different surfaces can impact the effectiveness of this exercise in strengthening your core.

      3. You’ll experience an increased boost to your overall metabolism

        Planking is an excellent way of challenging your entire body because doing them every day will burn more calories than other traditional abdominal exercises, such as crunches or sit-ups. The muscles you strengthen by doing this exercise on a day-to-day basis will ensure that you burn more energy even when sedentary. This is especially important if you are spending the majority of your day sitting in front of a computer. Also, making it a daily 10- to 1 minute home exercise before or after work will not only provide an enhanced metabolic rate but it will also ensure that that metabolic rate remains high all day long, (yes, even while you are asleep).

        4. You’ll significantly improve your posture

          Planking exercises have a great impact and improvement on your posture. This is great news as a strong posture brings with it a huge number of fantastic benefits .

          A good posture keeps your bones and joins in the correct alignment which means both your bones and joints will be better maintained and more healthy, but also means the overall effectiveness of your muscles will be improved.

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          A good posture will ensure your back or spine is in the correct position and so you will suffer less back pain.

          On top of everything, someone with good posture looks better, healthier, and more confident.

          5. You’ll improve overall balance

            Have you ever felt that when you tried standing on one leg, you couldn’t stand up straight for more than a couple of seconds? It’s not because you were drunk- unless you happened to be at the time!-  but rather, it’s because your abdominal muscles weren’t strong enough to give you the balance you needed. Through improving your balance by doing side planks and planks with extensions you will boost your performance in every kind of sporting activity.

            6. You’ll become more flexible than ever before

              Flexibility is a key benefit of doing planks regularly, for this form of exercise expands and stretches all your posterior muscle groups – shouldersshoulder blades, and collarbone – while also stretching your hamstrings, arches of your feet, and toes. With a side plank added in to the mix, you can also work on your oblique muscles. This will provide you with further benefits when it comes to hyper-extending your toes, a movement that is crucial for supporting your body’s weight.

              7. You’ll witness mental benefits

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                Plank exercises have a particular effect on our nerves, making them an excellent means of improving overall mood. How? Well, they stretch out muscle groups that contribute to stress and tension in the body. Just think about it: you are sitting in your chair, at home or at work, all day long; your thigh muscles get tight, your legs get heavy due to being bent for several hours; and tension develops in your shoulders due to being forced to slump forward all day. These are all circumstances that put too stress on the muscles and nerves. The good news is that planks not only calm your brain, but they can also treat anxiety and symptoms of depression– but only if you make it part of your daily routine.

                How to hold a plank position

                1. Get into pushup position on the floor.
                2. Now bend your elbows 90 degrees and rest your weight on your forearms.
                3. Keep your torso straight and rigid and your body in a straight line from ears to toes with no sagging or bending.
                4. Your head is relaxed and you should be looking at the floor.
                5. Hold the position for as long as you can.
                6. Remember to breathe. Inhale and exhale slowly and steadily.
                7. When your form begins to suffer, pull the plug. You’re only benefiting from the plank by actually doing the plank.

                Watch the video if you have any doubt!

                Here is a great infographic that shows the best plank variation exercises to evenly target all abdominal muscle groups:

                  How to improve your plank time gradually

                  1. Start with the easier variation if needed. You can start with a bent-knee plank if you can’t perform a regular plank yet. If you can hold a plank for more than two minutes with ease, you can move on to these tougher variations.
                  2. Practise every day. Space your planking exercise throughout the day and do 3-4 times every day. Try to hold the position 10 seconds longer each time.
                  3. Perform other body-weight exercises at the same time. Push-up and squat will improve your core strength too.

                  Are you ready to devote 5-10 minutes of your day, every day, to stay fit, healthy and, most importantly, strong as a bull? Then jump in and make doing plank exercises a part of your life.

                  Who Should Be Cautious Doing The Plank?

                  You need to be cautious doing Planking exercises if any of these risks apply to you:

                  • Prolapse
                  • After prolapse surgery
                  • Pelvic pain conditions
                  • Weak or poorly functioning pelvic floor muscles
                  • Previous childbirth
                  • Overweight

                  Choose an alternative pelvic floor abdominal exercise or consult your doctor before performing plank regularly.

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