Girl’s Got Game…An Intro to Hockey: Part 2

12 May

(Sorry for the random bit here at the beginning…trying to verify for technorati! KX3RSNDF346R)

So now that we have covered the positions in Ice Hockey, its time to tackle our next topic before tonight’s game, the basic structures of the game.  To a new spectator, hockey can seem like quite mindboggling. The players on the ice are constantly changing, the puck hardly stays in one zone for long and trying to figure out the rules feels like a lost cause. But it will become easier!

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    Unlike most other timed sports which play quarters or halves, a hockey game consists of three 20 minute periods separated by two, typically, 15-17 minute intermissions. If at the end of these 3 periods the game is still tied, the game will move into overtime. The rules for overtime differ in the regular season from the playoffs.

During the regular season, there will only be one 5 minute overtime following a 1 minute rest period. It is considered a “sudden death” period, meaning that the first team to score wins. Each team will play with 5 players instead of 6. Teams can also choose to remove their goaltender from the ice in exchange for an extra skater.

If at the end of this overtime period the score is still tied, the game will move into a “shootout.” The home team is offered the choice of shooting 1st or 2nd. Each team will select three players to participate. Each will take a 1-on-1 shot against the goalie. If after all 6 six shots the game is still tied, the shootout will continue but in a “sudden death” style. The game is won if one team makes their shot and their counterpart on the other team does not. Make sense? It’s a bit technical, I know.

Now during the Stanley Cup playoffs, the overtime rules change. Instead of a 1 minute rest with a 5 minute overtime, there is a full 15 minute intermission followed by a 20 minute regular period. There will be no shoot-out during the playoffs. The teams will continue to play full 20 minute period until a goal is scored. The team that scores the first goal during overtime is declared the winner.

With the 21 games played in overtime thus far in the playoffs, perhaps tonight you will get to see these rules in action. But make sure you tune in tonight, 7:30 pm, on NBC Sports and you can impress your friends with your hockey know-how. Enjoy! And as always, GO CAPS!

Girl at the Gym…30 Day Fitness Challenge

11 May

We have our first request: a 30 day challenge to help shape up before a big event!

As you probably know, there are hundreds of these across the web, all claiming “incredible” results. And as we all know all to well often this might not be the case, either because the workouts end up plateauing or they just can’t keep us interested. But don’t give up hope! There are a few, that select few, which end up doing just the trick.

I am one of those crazy people who loves being active, so trying out these challenges is something I am always doing. After my adventures into different fitness fads, there is one internet program I keep coming back to. And it seems I am not alone. I just restarted the program through their “May 30 Day Challenge” and am already hooked (plus I’m starting to feel the results).  What is this program? Body Rock.

Most programs either take hours and hours or only focus on cardio or sculpting, rarely are they fully rounded training programs. Not the case with Body Rock. Each day, Body Rock has a Burn, Sculpt and Flow portion in order to make sure you are optimizing your workout. Also, these workouts are tailored to women! And they are all about getting that hot body you have always wanted! So no need to fear that you are training like a body builder or inadvertently bulking when you wanted to be toning, because Body Rock is all about the lean, tight muscles!

Did I mention each portion of the workout usually takes only 12 minutes? That means all together the MAXIMUM your workout will take you is 36 minutes. And trust me, you’ll break a sweat.

We are working on creating our own Fitness Challenge, but until then check out the one we love! www.Bodyrock.tv But we promise to post our own favorite exercises, mini-workouts, workout challenges and the like! If there is a specific area (abs, arms, etc) you would like to see us post exercises for please shoot us an email girl.made.easy@gmail.com.

If you decide to try Body Rock and you stick with it, let us know! It’s always easier to keep motivated when you are not alone, so let us know your results,  if you’re fading, etc and let us be your team! Email us or leave a comment!

So get out there and give your workout a jumpstart! With summer just around the corner, why not?

Girl’s Got Game…An Intro to Hockey: Part 1

11 May

As promised, here is the first part of the Hockey 101 refresher. I figured the best way to start off an explanation of any sport is to start with a breakdown of the positions. Plus, to make it even more helpful, and more enjoyable, I will include some examples of players of each position (I will try and make them players from teams left in the playoffs) who aren’t too tough on the eyes…Sound good?

But first a fun, little fact about the history of hockey: for all of you laxers out there, did you know that hockey is an adaptation of the Native American game of lacrosse?

Now to the good stuff.  In hockey, there are three different general types of positions. Goalies, Defensemen, and Forwards (Wings and Centers). Before getting into the positions, here is a picture of the rink (hockey’s “field”) broken down into the three zones.

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Starting from the net (the goal), the first player you will come across is the goalie. I promise, he’s the easiest one to find. He hardly moves outside of the net and wears significantly bulkier padding. While you’re watching, take a moment to check out their helmets, usually goalies have these awesome designs on their helmets. But, as is true with most sports with a goal tender, the goalie’s main job is to protect the net. In hockey, they use lightning fast reflexes and crazy flexibility to keep the puck (hockey’s equivalent of a ball) out of their net. They also often help to orchestrate their teams defensive play.  As promised here are the play-offs best looking goalies:

 Image #79 Louis Domingue of the Phoenix Coyotes
Image #45 Jonathan Bernier of the Los Angeles Kings
Image  #70 Braden Holtby of the Washington Capitals
   Moving up from the goalies, the next players you will come across are the Defensemen. Typically, there will be two on the ice, a right and left. When the puck is in the defense zone, their primary focus is keeping the puck from ever even interacting with the goalie.  Each is responsible for patrolling their side of the ice (right or left) and trying to drive the play out to the boards (the “sidelines”) and away from the net. Usually, they are more likely to be the ones slamming their opponents into the glass. When the puck returns to their team’s control and their offensive play begins, the defensemen will move up the ice with their teammates but one of them will usually try to keep himself between the goalie and all of the other players.
Image #44 Davis Drewiske of the L.A. Kings
Image #52 Mike Green of the Washington Capitals
Image #27 Alec Martinez of the LA Kings (He looks like an actor, but I can’t remember who….please tell me if you can think of it!)
Image #27 Karl Alzner of the Washington Capitals
      Next up are the forwards. The attackmen of hockey. Forwards are usually broken down into two groups, centers and wings. We will start with the wings. Just like the defensemen, there are also, typically, two wings on the ice. Each is responsible for covering either the left or the right side of the ice. They usually need to be physically strong as they will spend a large portion of their play against the boards. They along with the center will work the puck around the net trying to score. As well as assist the defensemen when the other team gains possession. Fortunately, the teams left in the playoffs have some stunning wings:
Image #20 Troy Brouwer of the Washington Capitals
Image #18 Steve Bernier of the New Jersey Devils
Image#14 Taylor Pyatt of the Phoenix Coyotes (the new and improved Chris Pine anyone?)
   And finally we have come to the Centers, the quarterbacks of the ice. They are the team’s top playmakers, able to effectively spot passes and open shots on goal. They dominate the center of the ice moving from goal to goal. As they don’t have to interact with the boards quite as much as their wings, the center isn’t defined by his strength instead he usually is a fast skater with impressive puck handling skills. He often must take face-offs (not too different from the same concept in men’s lacrosse).  Defensively, the center uses his speed to try to cut off and break up the other teams plays before they have time to settle in around goal.  He is a bit of a jack of all trades.
 Like the wings, the centers of the NHL are very easy on the eyes:
Image  #21 Andy Miele of the Phoenix Coyotes
Image  #10 Mike Richards of the LA Kings
Image #20 Ryan Carter of the New Jersey Devils
Image #21 Brooks Laich of the Washington Capitals
  So now you hopefully have a basic understanding of what are the different positions and the zones of the rink.  Just a word of warning for those of you who haven’t seen hockey before, it is an incredibly fast game so do not be dismayed if you have trouble sorting out who is who on the fly. But I promise, it will click!  If you need a confidence boost, just find the goalie! If you can do that, you have 1/4 of the player groups covered right there!
   Plus once you pick a team, familiarize yourself with their roster. That always makes it a bit easier to see the different positions at work since you already have an idea of who is playing what.
    So put this new knowledge to use and tune into see the final matchup between the Washington Capitals and the New York Rangers Saturday night. 7:30pm Eastern time on NBC Sports. Go CAPS!

Girl on the Web!

10 May

    Girl: Made Easy has joined the social media world!

We are now, officially, on Pinterest, Twitter, and Facebook! We will keep all three up-to-date with news on our posts as well as mini-post, fun stories (like Prince Charles as a BBC weatherman), and other quick tips! Make sure to follow us so you don’t miss out!

Twitter: @girlmadeeasy

Facebook: Girl: Made Easy

Pinterest: girlmadeeasy

(All of the names above are links to our respective pages!) And as always, feel free to email at girl.made.easy@gmail.com!

Remember its a great day to be a Girl: Made Easy!

Girl in the Kitchen…Healthy, but Yummy Snacks

10 May

Its May. Memorial Day is rapidly approaching. At first, this thought fills most heads with images of fun in the sun. But quickly, the wide-eyed horror sets in. “Almost Memorial Day” soon means “bathing suit season”…

If you are anything like me, you probably have images like the one of gorgeous Candice Swanepoel below stuck in your head as your idea of what you “should” be looking like by the time you have to first don that bikini in public.

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     But no need to stress, you still have plenty of time to shape up your eating habits before that now-haunting deadline…

    During the work-day its tough to try to eat healthy.  Boredom at your desk often translates into random cravings, which then leads you far too frequently to that convenient vending machine in the break room filled with chips and candy. Then after the work day is over, you are plagued with the “WHY did I eat that?” guilt.  A vicious cycle.

     Now is the time to break it. And doing so is remarkably simple.

1) Instead of relying on the vending machine for your snacks, try bringing your own snacks. Go browse the aisles of the grocery store for pre-packed snack sized portions (the 100 calorie packs are great for this) of your favorite snacks.

         Annie’s Bunnies are my personal favorite…Image

 

 

2) Try to make sure the snacks you are bringing are filling. High Fiber foods help make you feel full and keep you feeling full longer.  Fruits, nuts and veggies are great sources of fiber.

Try any of these: ImageImageImage

 

 

3) Try keeping your portion size smaller. Even if a smaller portion means that you might have to have a little, healthy snack every 3-4 hours that is completely fine! Your body operates more effectively when it is constantly being fueled and you are less likely to overeat. Check out an article about the benefits of this style of eating here. It also helps encourage weight loss!

 

So go out, try incorporating these three easy steps into your daily snack schedule, and get excited, not stressed, for those pool days ahead!

Girl’s Got Game…An Intro to Hockey

10 May

When it comes to be championship season, sports pick up huge amounts of new fans. Many of which are often women.  According to Nielsen Media Research, women represented 45.9% of the viewing population of the 2011 Super Bowl, well over a third during the 2010 World Cup Final, and nearly 50% major tennis finals. Women are also likely to tune into the NBA Finals, World Series, and the Daytona 500. But why is it that the major events in Ice Hockey, included the Stanley Cup Finals, draw such fewer women?

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     It may just be that we need a quick 101 refresher on the game…So in honor of the Stanley Cup playoffs, we are going to give you just that! Over the next few days, we will break down the basics, aka Hockey Made Easy, so that you too can jump in and watch the exciting games to come!

Girl at the Movies…The Avengers

9 May

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Many of you have probably seen this poster floating around or heard its name, “The Avengers,” whispered through the lips of every man and teenager you encounter.  Some of you may have even joined in on the excitement, no need to blush in embarrassment, the hype is well deserved.

Sure superhero movies and action flicks have long been stereotyped as “man movies.” But let’s be honest.  They are plenty female oriented too. Why else would they worry about casting good-looking men?  Ask a guy who watches any sort of action movies if he cares what the guy kicking-ass looks like. Most likely, he will say no.  According to the two guys seated next to me, they would rather have this “scarred up badass”

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as the action hero than a “jacked pretty boy” like these (tough to look away right? Now I’m just being shameless…)

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Why does Hollywood insist upon casting the “jacked pretty boy” if the supposed main demographic does not want him? Because men are no longer the only demographic that matters.  According to The Hollywood Reporter, 40% of the audience thus far for The Avengers has been women and 55% of it has been couples.  Is The Avengers this summers new chick flick?

Ladies, this movie is worth the trip to the theater. Not only do you get to see two of those shirtless wonders on the big screen, the film itself is truly enjoyable. Unlike most superhero films, over-stimulating action sequences (think Transformers…) are not the movie’s main focus. Instead Joss Whedon actually managed to create a well-developed story and some very, very entertaining dialogue, but the badass action sequences don’t hurt.  Don’t be worried if you haven’t seen any of the characters’ movies such as Thor, Iron Man, or Captain America (Don’t worry no one else has seen The Hulk movies either), you will still be completely able to follow the story, invest in the characters and laugh at all of the jokes.

Plus did I mention the eye candy? Even if you can’t be motivated to see it just based off of its quality, just go for the visual splendor. Chris Evans, Chris Hemsworth, Mark Ruffalo, Tom Hiddleston, and Robert Downey Jr all on one screen. Plus others. This film has enough sex appeal on one screen to make any girl happy.

So go on, rally some friends and make this into a Girls night out to the movies. Get on the bandwagon. The Avengers one is not to be missed.