Category: Health – Food | Drink | Exercise

This is a “health” category that includes anything related to health topics in general, food, drink and exercise.

Why does Cheese make you dream funny things?

I ate a lot of cheese at the weekend and just remembered that when I grew up people used to say “cheese makes you dream funny“.

So I consulted Dr. Google and found this page which explains why.

It is not the cheese, it is that anything you eat late at night and takes time to digest, and from my understanding this is the case with cheese, keeps you more awake resulting in you having more vivid dreams.

Therefore, it is not the cheese but heavy to disgest food in general. Really, I could have thought of that myself.

Friday Night Pizza?

You all know that feeling. Friday night. Just home from work and you think – I can’t be bothered cooking, let’s get a take away.

For the past 4 years living in Beckenham, there is one pizza place I always recommend: Rocket Pizza!

The guys are amazing. Not only do they live down the road from us and the pizza is piping hot when it arrives, but also it is good value for money.

Jen’s favourite one is the BBQ Chicken without peppers whilst I prefer the Four Season if I do not create my own:

  • mushrooms
  • olives
  • artichokes
  • garlic (sometimes double garlic)
  • Ham
  • Tandoori chicken
  • double cheese

And yesterday, they added tuna to that. Aaargh, just does not mix right. I got a fresh new one delivered (free of charge of course) but would loved to speak to the cook. Mixing tuna with the above is just not right. As I said to my wife, they should have known me by now and asked whether I was sure to have tuna on there.

Never mind – I still rate them one of the best pizza take away/home delivery services in SE London.

fitness first – customer service second!

Fitness First seems to be one of the biggest fitness clubs in the UK.

However, their customer service is appalling. I try to be constructive with my critics:

I joined them in their Bloomsbury gym in March and went during lunch time. Since I got busier I could not go anymore and tried to go to the Beckenham club since. There I have to sign in every time I go and if I have any membership related questions they refer me to Bloomsbury.

So, on 14th of July (coming up 2 months) I filled in a form to transfer my membership at same conditions and be a member in Beckenham.

Since, I had  about 5 calls, voice mails etc, returned the calls and nothing has happened. NOTHING at all. Left notes at the reception desk too. Ergo, I called their customer service team in their head office yesterday and said “no one seems to be interested and if I do not hear from you I quit and go somewhere else”.

Guess, nothing has happened.
I think I might have to go to the Bloomsbury branch and quit my membership and start a new one in Beckenham. The assumption I make is that I need to pay extra to join the Beckenham gym. Would not surprise me.

When I refered someone to the club it took them 4 weeks (f-o-u-r) to actually sort out my referral voucher which I had to redeem the same day due to its validity. I was not impressed and complained about that – still waiting for an answer and excuse. And, the watch I got was not working properly – did not really want it but had to chose something!

Maybe big clubs can afford to lose members and can afford an arrogant attitude towards their members. There is no doubt their gym equipment is top notch and their trainers are well educated, but, with all enthusiasm, I cannot see anyone caring for their customers….

If you pick that up, Fitness First, let me know and feel free to comment.

Anyone else had bad experience with them? I knew why I took out a 3 months membership, I might just go back to the council gym for half the price but friendly people….you will see!

Btw, I like their comment about “Fitness First is always working hard to make sure you get the best benefits for your membership – inside and outside your club!”

Wow, they save you pounds but don’t have any offers? And, they are working hard for you to get the best benefits for your membership – WORK HARDER!

work life balance

I think the last time I wrote about work life balance was regarding the entrepreneur and intrepreneur.

A thought I had was when I have been working from home, which happens occasionally, whether I have a better or worse work-life-balance.

And, the answer is difficult. I remember that studying for my MBA we discussed that if you work from home, you should get your own room/desk and area in the house. This way you could “go home” after work and relax, e.g. getting your life.

However, for me as an occasional “working from home” person, it is not that easy. A small house with only one proper desk, it is like you are in your living room all day.

Often, when I discuss that with clients, I get the answer of “I would get too distracted at home” – I agree, some people can. For me it is usually the other way around:

I get up my usual time and sit on the laptop about one hour earlier than I usually do. Then, from a lunch point of view, I eat whatever is around and never really feel hungry, ergo do not have a proper break until the late afternoon. Which is, when I go back to my desk and deal with some work over in the US and end up shutting down the laptop around 7 or 8 pm.

Wow, that makes it a full 11 hour day (only noticed that now). And, my way home is quick. I just sit on the other side of the table and end up being home 🙂

Now, there are two sides to that:
I personally get more distracted by work than by home, e.g. I enjoy working and what I do, so end up working more at home but cannot really escape work physically. But, I have enough confidence to turn things off if it is getting too much.

Finding the right balance is important. And, as long as you enjoy the work you are doing, working from home occassionally is fine. However, I actually enjoy being in the office too – even if I am alone in the office. Just to get away from home 🙁 Is that double minded?

I read “big brother’s” comment about life-life balance. There are so many discussions about what is right or wrong and I believe nothing is right or wrong as long as it works for you (and ultimately for the person you work for). If you cannot turn off the laptop when it’s time and you cannot turn off your blackberry when needed, then you do need to work on your priorities. You need to enjoy what you are doing, that is really the key.

Some more Buddhist thoughst on life-life balance can be found at balamadana.

Enjoy a relaxing weekend.

Intrapreneurs and Entrepreneurs – work life balance

Some Friday reading I picked up:

MT article on Intrapreneurs, very interesting! And, same publication, one about entrepreneurs and work life balance.

Very interesting stuff. Does that  mean I am better off and healthier if I work as an intrapreneur?

Have a good weekend


inflation ?! or why are rolls so expensive?

I remember, back in 1997 when I was still living in Germany and planning a trip to the UK, that the exchange rate from the “Deutsche Mark (DM)” to the “Great British Pound (GBP)” was 3:1.

So 1 Mark bought me 30 pence!
And, I remember that when the price for a “normal” roll went up to 32 Pfennings, e.g. 10 pence, my parents were devastated. That was very expensive for a roll.

scary roll
scary roll

Now, for the last few days when I buy rolls it crosses my mind that the rolls here are about the same “number”, e.g. 32-39 pence which makes it about 100 pence, a price increase of round about 300%.

Unfortunately, the Euro now is so strong that for argument sake 39 pence are about 49 Euro cent. If we assume that the Euro was 1:2 to the DM we are back to 1 DM for a roll these days.

Not sure how the inflation developed in the last 10 years. If we assume about 4% on average over 10 years, we would end up with (if I did it right) about 51 Pfennings for a role, e.g. 25 cents or about 28-19 pence.

This still means a price increase of 100%, e.g. I pay double the price for a roll in the UK than I pay in Germany. Of course I do not know how much you pay for a “Broetchen” these days in Germany – please advise and comment! The only reference I found is a year old, 25 cents, locally even 15 cents! That sounds about right.

I am looking forward to some comments on “how much should a roll cost” and “why are rolls more expensive in the UK than in German”? Any other experience of roll prices?

For all economists out there and those who are interested in CPI etc., see Wikipedia for details.

Enjoy your lunch 😉

Saturday Mornings and Wine using Online PR

Is it only me or…..

I love Saturday mornings. What did I do today? I woke up at 8ish with a tired head. Nice Bordeaux and Cheese Fondue made me very sleepy last night. I got up, showered and first thing: the post office. Aren’t those the pleasures of life where you have to pick up parcels because you weren’t at home during the week and opening hours are during your work time.

Then I got the FT, haven’t read it for a while but wanted to get back into the habit, really enjoying it. Off for a massage, shopping in a far too full supermarket, doing the laundry, tidying the house and – oups – it is almost 3 pm.

What does that mean? Lunch, a quick tidy, some friends for a BBQ and before I know it, it’s Sunday.

So what do I make of weekends these days? To be honest. Our weekends are planned until late September, therefore, I cannot wait until I am there (in September) to have each and every weekend off! Hurray.

When I decide to not invite friends for a weekend or two (sorry guys) and enjoy myself, the house and a weekend off. Times will come.

Anyhow, to make this entry not too boring, I should refresh it with some thoughts on …. wine of course.

The 2005 Cab Sav from California is apparently very good. No surprise I visited (online that is) one of my favourite wine suppliers again… and joined their mailing list. Better keep up to date with the developments.

Kendall Jackson is also using Online PR quite effectively, being featured on YouTub; learn more about combining wine and food here: