Working out for a Good Body and Health

Maintaining a physically fit body is vital to being healthy. Fitness centers can help us to keep in shape, however you do not need to join a fitness center or gym to stay healthy.

Here are some tips to getting the exercise you need to get or keep strong and healthy!

* Weight training

Weight training is under the strength training program designed to develop the size of skeletal muscles and physical strength. It uses the principle of gravity; the trainee’s force would be used to oppose the pull of the earth. This weight training makes use of different kinds of equipment to develop specific groups of muscles. Dumbbells, weighted bars or weight stacks are the most commonly used.

* Cycling

Cycling is commonly done by people who want to improve their cardiovascular health and fitness. In this view, cycling is particularly beneficial for those suffering from arthritis and for those who are not fitted to play rigid sports like running which require strength of the joints.

* Swimming

Swimming is a very good exercise. Swimming is also usually recommended for those who with disabilities or who want to rehabilitate after injuries.

* Aerobics

Aerobic classes usually include stepping patterns, done with music and signals directed by an instructor. Researches show that aerobic is one of the healthiest exercises. Aerobics, literally meaning “with oxygen”, helps the body to use consume the oxygen more efficiently by training the lungs and heart. This helps to reduce stress and to control weight.

* Basketball

While this very common sport is an indoor game, other variations have been popular as this sport can also be played outdoors.

* Yoga
Yoga focuses on meditation. It is considered as a way to both spiritual and physiological mastery.

* Martial arts

Martial arts are structures of arranged traditions and practices of combat training. Martial arts today are not just being learned for combat purposes, but also for fitness, self-defense, mental discipline, self-cultivation, and character development.

* Social Events

Yes social events! Friends, good times, laughter. Not everything should be about work or constant pressure. Finding social events to attend can be a great way to relax and make great life long friendships.

Get started today on you for a life of health and happiness!

Fat Blasting Fitness Boot Camp

OK, it’s time! Lets not delay anymore. Some of us it’s been a month, 2 months, or maybe even a couple of years. But, the time is NOW to get in shape.

This is boot camp at its FINEST!!

Are you FINALLY ready to tone, firm, strengthen and get rid of that pesky fat and lose a few extra pounds??

Do you want to. . .

Slip back into your favorite pair of skinny jeans?

Wear a two piece bathing suit on the beach?

Look good on your first date with a hot guy/gal?

Look your best for weddings, graduations?

Be slim and trim for that 10 year high school reunion?

Improve overall health while losing fat and strengthening your entire body?

If you answered YES! to any of the above, then YOU need to join this boot camp!

New Rochelle classes are 630p-715p on Monday and Wednesdays.
Yonkers classes are 830am-915am on Tuesday and Thursdays.

Contact me now for more details and get your name on the list. Space is limited!!

Personal training and group training are available as well.

Marcus T. Hodge
Certified Personal Trainer
Certified Fitness Nutrition Specialist
marcus @ (spaces included to avoid spam)

•Location: Westchester – New Rochelle/ Yonkers

Qualities of a GREAT dancer. Technical VS Legend!

My favorite prop wings!

Hello all! Usually I am so inspired to write, but always at the WRONG times! I get my best inspiration during my long drives to teach in my hometown of New Rochelle or to a performance in Westchester or NYC! I should probably get a tape recorder. Now that I actually have time to sit and write, let me tell you what has been going on in the busy life of mine. As most of you have already read in past articles I have a CRAZY life. I am a mother of 3 boys moved to NW CT from lower Westchester NY but still have most of my business ties there. I travel back and forth at least 1x a week to teach bellydance, perform at various locations or both! I am currently going for my CT real estate license while trying to set up new classes in my area of CT and starting my own event planning company while being a stay at home mom! Phew just saying it out load leaves me breathless! People ask me all the time why my husband and I decided to move so far. It is just far enough to change the environment we wanted to raise our kids. They still have a bit of city spunk, but in a more rural atmosphere. They are exposed to a more easy going way of living. Not so rushed or stressed. There is plenty of nature around us to keep us exploring our part of CT for years to come. Hiking, boating, fishing, biking, crafts, farms…endless! It is not so far away where we can not make it to family with in a little over an hour. My husband and I go back and forth as to which lifestyle suits us best. On one hand we are nature lovers and love outdoors activities. On the other we still are very much a part of the NYC nightlife! I guess for now our roots are here doing what is best for the family and our hearts take us to NYC when ever possible.

My bellydance brings me to NY often. I volunteer for various charity events that come up, because it makes me feel good to help the communities how ever I can. I hope the good karma will return to me some day. In doing these charity events I learn it isn’t always about shameless promotion of yourself, but helping the cause you are there for. Hopefully People will remember my show and my name and will want to look me up to learn more about my style of dance. I am not a good self promoter. I don’t like to force feed people my resume and list all of my achievements on my intro. If people really care they will find out. Just as I have in the past with some of my favorite dancers…Suhaila, Ansuya, Sera Solstice, Leila Harem, Shabnab, Neon etc!
I have been exposed to many different styles of bellydance and I think I can tell who is a GREAT dancer and who is just EHH. What I am so tired of seeing is EHH dancers thinking that because they have been dancing for years it gives them a free pass! Years of training can not make someone a great dancer. Some dancers train and even teach for decades and in my opinion are not very good. Some people were just naturally born dancers, some people were not. Especially with such an expressive form of dance. You may see them as being great Jazz, or ballroom dancers, technical but bellydancer…not so much. What I don’t like to see is the disrespect of other dancers! Whether I think a bellydancers performance was horrible or not, I will give her my attention, clap and smile. ESPECIALLY if she appears to be enjoying herself and is leaving it all out there on the dance floor! Everyone deserves their moment. Who are you to ruin it with your frowns and snickers? It takes an extreme amount of courage to put yourself out there raw and vulnerable for all to see. One at least deserves applause for that! I have had people tell me during a dancers show “you could totally out dance her or She sucks compared to you” I always tell them 1st you are bias. 2 that I try to avoid getting up with other dancers because I am a professional and it is not fair to have 2 dancers on the floor. But if a dancer invites me I won’t deny her, but I tone it down as to not try and show her up. 3. even if she is horrible, I tell them a GREAT dancer is always respectful of other dancers and the different styles. When people don’t know the difference between different styles it is hard for them to gauge what is a good show or not. They are expecting them all to be the same. I try to educate them as much as I can in 5 min time span lol. I also respect a dancer who dances with her heart and put her all into her performance then a dancer who looks bored and just going through the motions for a pay check.
I am disappointed to see dancers be rude to other dancers. I guess not everyone was taught to be respectful. If one hears their teacher trashing another professional dancer, it just lets them know that such rude behavior is acceptable. Such childish behavior for women of a certain age. That bad attitude is what has sent so many students to me. I have had girls walk into my studio and thank me for welcoming them and making them feel comfortable. It was not the experience they had with other teachers. Instead of when women inquire about the dance to help them understand what the class is about they were made to feel like fools and basically turned away or were so turned off by the conversation they did not want to join. Others told me of experiences with well known teachers where they were made fun of and embarrassed. Others felt they were not taught new and exciting material. I don’t mind taking the business another has passed up. One mans trash is anothers treasure. What I do mind is the disregard for another human beings feelings! A teachers goal SHOULD BE to produce dancers who will one day become greater then she. People will ask who was your teacher? I will be happy if someone will be able to reply Destiny Maktub! I give my girls ALL of my secrets over time, keeping none for myself! This is the gift I give. I am here to teach, encourage and nurture ANYONE who has the passion and desire to be a bellydancer professional or private.
At a recent event I overheard another “professional” dancer speaking poorly of me and my dance style. How I changed the name of my style so many times the fact I had no formal training etc. I thought it rude, tacky, immature and showed the persons insecurity. As a professional if I have questions about anyones dance, where it originated etc I take them to the dancer herself. I am here to answer what ever questions any dancer may have about me or the style I developed…because yes I had no formal bellydance training. I was blessed with a God given ability that I spent a lot of time evolving and breaking down to teach to others. ( can be found in other article How Bellydance House Fusion was born ) I pride myself on the quality of performances I give. Most being freestyle…whatever I am feeling at the moment.
It is a gift I choose to pass to others without any reservations or worry or fear my students will surpass me! Hence the name change of my style over time.  As I grew and evolved the dance, I came full circle back to the bellydance- club foundation I started with. Ending with Bellydance-House Fusion. In the future one should be more careful about trashing another professional dancer in public. I don’t have to bad mouth a dancer like that…other people see or hear a display like that and form their own opinions about the charachter of a person on their own.
Rule # 1. Dance like no one is watching! Dance with all your heart! Dance like it is the last time you will ever dance! Always give 100%!
Rule # 2 Always keep going NO MATTER WHAT! (injury…work through the pain until the end of the show) You fall (get up) You forget the steps (revert back to your bread & butter moves) Most of all dance with your heart!
Rule # 3 Be HUMBLE! say thank you to compliments and appreciate each as they come…you never know when it could be your last.
Rule # 4 RESPECT all dancers and their styles. Just because they are not your favorite or exciting to you does not mean they are not skilled in their craft. Treat others the way you want to be treated as a dancer. If someone wants to be lower class and insult you or your dance style, Be the better person walk away or simply offer them opportunity to learn about you. Also understand that not everyone has the same moral upbringing and reality is people are cruel…but so is karma (the root of my name ironically) 🙂
These are the things A LEGEND is made of NOT years of experience!
I would love to be able to teach in NY at least 3x a week to keep fit. But since lately all I have is 1x a week… I have to settle for the gym at least
3x a week. 1 hour elliptical min of 500-600 calories & 300 crunches
I refuse to do anything else but elliptical! I get on with my head phones…bellydance & house, techno & trance and run. When I get tired and feel my body giving up…I put on a song that I know means something or has a beat that will carry my body with no effort. I look ahead. Envision that I am on a dance floor dancing my heart out! Push through the pain of the moment. I control my breathing the entire time. In and out through the nose for most of the work out. When I get too exerted, in through the nose out through the mouth. Head up! Good posture. Control! You can do this! Just breath! In through the nose out through the mouth. When I get my composure back and the next song has begun I am running harder to the beat! Dig deep with in for the strength we all have if we choose to unlock it. The minute you lose focus of your breathing, of the rhythm as in dance you will start to fail. Re focus. regain composure. Keep going. Same rules apply. The elliptical is the stage…give it your all…make it a  competition…a show! Believe in yourself like I believe in fairy magic! I sprinkle some fairy dust on you all here and hope it touches each of you and inspires you to follow your dreams! The moment we start to doubt our dreams, they unravel like awakening from a dream one layer at a time.
I have started a new series of lessons
1 Monday a month at Zitoune Moroccan Cuisine
1127 West Boston Post Road Mamaroneck, NY 10543-3331 (914) 835-8350
Includes bellydance lesson appetizer and glass of wine $35.
Please call restaurant or myself to inquire about dates & time.
Every Tuesday 7 PM at Rangoli Indian Cuisine
615 Main Street, New Rochelle, NY (914) 235-1306
Includes bellydance lesson, appetizer sampler, mango lassi or glass or wine $25
Please understand I drive a great distance to continue teaching in Westchester. Please respect my time.
If anyone is interested in forming classes in your area and have a group of 5 or more get in touch with me. It makes a great ladies night!
We dance. We eat. We drink. We talk and swap stories. It is a unique experience. My classes are never just classes. Until next time…Follow your dreams! Be kind to others!
“Dance Like No One is Watching” TM
~Destiny Maktub

Benefits of the Lemonade Diet

To date, ten of thousands of people or even millions, celebrities, have embark on the lemonade diet and it isn’t without a reason. To shed off extra pounds, more likely 20 pounds in two weeks, Beyonce Knowles used the Master Cleanse Lemonade diet to get ready for her role as Deena in the movie, “Dreamgirls.” Robin Quivers divulged going through the diet for three times in 2004 and got 145 pounds from 218 pounds.

Lemonade Diet has indeed been the talk of the town after testimonies from various celebrities who went through the diet and consequently shed off extra pounds. Moreover, it is to be noted that Lemonade Diet is originally meant as a detox or a cleansing diet to remove toxins and impurities from the body. Losing weight is just but one of the side effects. And why is it necessary to cleanse the body?

There are many ways to detox and clean the body and one of the most effective is Master Cleanse Lemonade Diet. After cleaning out the body by removing toxins and addictions, energy is regained and a shift from unhealthy food to healthy ones is developed since it is actually the body’s natural reactions – to take in healthy food for proper functioning of the cells and systems.

During the diet, individuals will take in lemonade drink consist of lemon juice, cayenne pepper, maple syrup and water. These ingredients are the key to the cleansing process. The fast is started by drinking salt water mixture followed by a herbal tea.

Moreover, the tea is actually intended as a laxative to be drink at night before going to bed. Saltwater is meant to clean the colon that is why you need to have easy access to a rest room since you will go through frequent bowel movement and urination. For the rest of the day, six to twelve servings of the lemon juice must be consumed.

The Lemonade diet lasts for ten days. During the diet, you will take nothing but the lemonade juice, laxative tea and salt water. Together with this main parts are water and raw vegetables. Aside from cleaning the body, losing weight also takes place since there is no intake of calorie rich and salty food. Absence of sat in one’s diet can cause weight loss particularly on water weight.

To continue this article and learn more about the lemonade diet, the master cleanser and the lemonade diet recipe please visit us at:

The Lemonade Diet

Lets talk about bellydance.

Lets talk about bellydance. There are many different stories and opinions as to where the dance originated and how it became what it is today. My personal belief is that it has been done since the beginning of time. Women have used dance for spiritual  and healing rituals. They have gathered and danced in joy and sorrow. It has always been a way for her to express her innermost feelings and tell a story.  She uses nothing more than her body movements and her eyes, allowing others a glimpse through the windows to her soul. I believe there are so many different forms of bellydance  because women from all corners of the world were dancing in the beginning. Growing and evolving each style. In my opinion I believe each is unique and equally special in its own form.

 I believe that the true masters of the dance are the ones who preserve the art of the dance while continuing to evolve it and with it. The best dancers are the ones that dance from the heart. The rawness and passion that is expressed through her dance when she is truly moved or inspired. Rarely do I feel this is expressed the same in choreographed pieces. I don’t agree with popular consensus as to who are the best bellydancers  and master teachers. Just because you studied, performed or taught for 20 years does not mean you are good at it, let alone the best. Experienced yes. A master no. With the title master teacher, I expect a lot more from a performance and a class.

What I feel makes a good teacher is the ability to successfully break down steps and teach it in a language that all levels of dancers can understand. Having different explanations and ways a dancer can somehow relate to the movement in everyday life is helpful. Not everyone comprehends the technical bellydance realm. A good teacher is not going to expect you to just follow what she is doing, leaving some beginners watching in awe, but feeling inadequate while she basically performs for the class instead of teaching. A true teacher is willing to give her students her secrets. A great teacher wants her students to excel and surpass her ability. She will not always try to keep her students a step or two below her. After all, if our students become wonderful dancers, better then we are in fact, it can only reflect brilliance in our teaching ability.

My philosophy of teaching is this… Each of us are individuals with our own different way of learning and expressing. I try to reach each student on her level. All my classes are open level. Everyone moving at the level and pace they need. I always begin with basic and alternative stretching and warm ups. I cover a few basic moves to review, then move to shimmies, variations and drills or a more challenging move to perfect. I always end with a few minutes of freestyle. I play a song at request or at random. Each dancer can feel safe, secure and confident to practice, perfect or try new moves while in a performance mode. This is where my motto “Dance like no one’s watching” TM comes in. I tell the girls…imagine yourself on a stage with flattering lights and a fierce costume. Imagine that this is the last time you will ever dance. Dance with your heart! Dance like you do when you are alone in your house and you know no one’s watching.

What I look for in a performer is entertainment. That is what you are there for. Yes we appreciate the art, but, it doesn’t matter how technical or folkloric you are all of the time. The majority of the audience will not recognize that you have executed technique perfectly. As a bellydance performer you are there as an entertainer. People want to see a show sometimes even a spectacle! To see a dancer transition from being lost in her dance and then back to connecting with her audience, grabbing the minds and fantasies of individuals to be lost in her dance with her is the mark of an amazing dancer and probably one of the best performances you will ever see.

When attending my classes or performances I aim to make it an experience instead of making people feel like spectators. We all started as beginners. I consider myself to be a true master teacher of the form I created Bellydance-House Fusion. The most important thing in all of this is to remember to have fun! Enjoy the moments in the dance.

I look forward to sharing more stories about my experience as a bellydance  instructor, performer, mother of 3, adventures in the tri-state area hookah bars and lounges, International restaurants and other cultural and bellydance related events. To keep track of my everyday goings on please friend request me on Destiny Maktub. Here is a clip from a few years ago Bellyhouse & Destiny Perform @ House Of Blues.

**Side Note** Rakkasah East the biggest bellydance festival in North East U.S. will be held Oct 8th, 9th & 10th Somerset, NJ. We go every year. There is non stop bellydance performances all 3 days, workshops, and TONS of  bellydance apparel and other vending! Not to be be missed for the bellydance enthusiast!

Until next time…

~Double Kisses & Shimmies~ Destiny The Dancer