Wednesday, April 13, 2016

15 Things Good Zumba Instructors Do

There are Zumba instructors I'd move mountains for just to get to their classes. Their force, or energy is probably what inspired me to become an instructor. As part of my Zumba journey, I started to think about what instructors do to keep their classes full and participants wanting more.

From the the years of doing Zumba, here is my wish list for a good instructor. They:

1) Focus attention on the participants. It's never about themselves performing on stage.
2) Listen to and take onboard feedback from the class.
3) Plan their classes, never "winging it".
4) Get to know their participants.
5) Never show weakness or complain on the stage.
6) Never speak negatively about other instructors or participants.
7) Change their playlist every month or second month.
8) Keep breaks as minimal as possible, most times don't take breaks at all.
9) Show up early for their classes. Start and finish on time.
10) Do moves that flow well with the music.
11) Do quick cues clearly and consistently from the 6 or 7th beat.
12) Demonstrate the moves with energy and enthusiasm.
13) Take control of the class without being aggressive.
14) They're shining ambassadors for the fitness programme, Zumba.
15) Display confidence, smile and create camaraderie in their classes.

Sunday, April 3, 2016

Visiting Richmond Park

I rarely visit Richmond Park because that it takes so long to get there. If you're new to London whatever you do, don't take the District or Overground lines unless you're within 10 stops away.

There is a faster way from central London. Take an overground train from Waterloo. Trains to Reading are the quickest because there's only one stop, Clapham Junction. There are other trains but make sure you check the stops because it can be either 25 minutes or 55 minutes to Richmond. 

From the train station I took a 371 bus and got off at the American University stop. It's a few minutes walk from there to the gates of Richmond Park. As you can tell it's not the most convenient park to get to but there are plenty of rugged natural areas to hike or have a picnic and see the deer that roam in the park.

Blue skies are fleeting so we made the most of them. It was a beautiful spring day.

By 4pm the clouds rolled in and it got cold. We saw what my friend came out to see-the deer that roamed the park. 

The appeared to be used to humans following them with smartphones. Very peaceful creatures.

Friday, April 1, 2016

Making Sashimi, Korean Rice Cakes, Radish Kimchi and Garabaldi Biscuits

I'm quite the homemaker now that I'm on a frugal lifestyle. Cooking has become a hobby or at most times a necessity as it's cheaper and healthier than eating out. 

Whole salmon was on special so I bought the one for £14 and had it filleted. I asked to keep the head too. (I'm Asian after all!) I note to to ask to keep the bellies because they keep it otherwise. 

I'm surprised cats didn't follow me because I smelt fishy carrying it home. I washed the fish and cut 14 fillets for freezing. The off cuts were used for sashimi. That's right, I eat raw fish from the supermarket. I'm not guaranteeing you won't get sick but I've not had an issue with eating fresh Scottish farmed salmon raw. Just get it super fresh, wash it, pat dry and slice before eating. Your nose should know if it's bad. At least that's my motto.

I'm addicted to Maangchi videos on youtube and made hot and spicy ricecakes, Tteokbokki. For the cylindrical rice cake, garaetteok, I misread the recipe and made them with rice flour instead of short grain rice flour. Instead of going to the shops, I used the organic brown sushi rice in our pantry to make the flour for garaetteok. This time it's healthier with more chewiness. I soaked the rice for a day and let it strain for two hours. Then I put it through a coffee grinder. It was hard work kneading the dough but I made a lot of rice cakes for the freezer.

I picked up some mooli on sale so made kimchi as I'm running low. It's easier to make than normal kimchi. I threw in some homegrown perilla leaves for a change of flavour. 

And finally I'm baking my own Garabaldi biscuits. I love the storebought kind and this way I get my fix fresher with no additives. Can't resist these things with a cup of earl grey with milk.