A Scary New Resolution


(Picture from NHS Couch to 5K webpage)

Today I will be writing about a very unusual topic of discussion for me: fitness.

Why unusual? First, because I don’t find it particularly interesting and, secondly, because I am not a great fan of sport. I’d much rather spend my time discussing, reading and thinking about current affairs, travelling or philosophy just to mention some example. I simply do not enjoy sports. I guess I could say I’m rather lazy!

In addition, I don’t want to turn into yet another one of those bloggers following the ‘crowd’ of fitness-obsessed bloggers. I really don’t intend to turn running into my main life aim nor do I intend to make myself feel bad for comparing my perhaps ridiculously easy goal with other people’s.  I am not interested in running marathons or competing, this is all just about myself and my own wellbeing.

So, why am I now blogging about fitness? For quite a while I have been wanting to lose some weight and become a bit fitter. I’m not aiming to radically change my lifestyle as my focus in life is not fitness. I really am not overweight at all, however I am aware of being unfit and of how much better I would feel with a couple of kg less.

I want to be more active. I don’t care exactly how this will happen, but my starting point is to write about this on my blog – just so that my resolution doesn’t die off by tomorrow! I will try to keep some sort of diary to make myself accountable of my weekly physical activity. For today, I have discovered a UK NHS plan for running up to 5 Kilometers (3.1 Miles) after 9 weeks. This is the web page: http://www.nhs.uk/Livewell/c25k/Pages/get-running-with-couch-to-5k.aspx. I have listened to parts of the NHS podcasts and decided I liked them, so I have downloaded them to my computer. They sound reasonable and progressive. I like the idea of having a sort of ‘personal trainer’ who guides you during your workout without having the hassle or the expense of a ‘real’ one.

My next step will be to sort out my shoes and MP3 player (I might buy an i Pod), and next week I’m planning to start this program. I am a bit (actually, very!) scared of giving up even before starting (I know myself well) and finding all possible excuses to avoid running – as I know how embarrassed I feel! I also know this will be a massive effort considering how busy my weeks are while working and studying both full time. But I also know this is a reasonable goal and that I would feel very proud of myself if I were able to achieve it!

Now it’s time to go to the gym for a workout before starting the program next week!

Nets of Peace


We hear in the daily news about the Israeli-Palestian conflict. We unfortunately tend to hear only bad news from that region: terrorist attacks, Israeli raids, settlements in occupied land, qassam rockets and much much more. Everything we hear seems to be sending one message to the world: that region is stuck in a never-ending conflict.

Rethorical comments are abundant, therefore I just aim to report a fact which appears to be practically unknown. There are very few webpages on this (one should probably wonder why), as you can test yourself through a simple Google search.

Ever heard of ‘Nets of Peace‘? If anyone has heard of it before, I’d be happy to know! I first read about this very interesting project on Pagine Ebraiche, in an article by M. Calimani. The idea is simple: to set up a large-scale fish industry in Gaza to promote peace. This project stems from the desire to solve serious issues affecting the Gaza strip and, ultimately, Israel. The team leading the project realised that there were two sets of facts which could be put in relation.

On the one hand, the serious unemployment and the malnutrition affecting Gaza. Unofficial reports estimate the unemployment in Gaza affects more than 40% of the population in Gaza, causing many people to apply for jobs with Hamas simply because they wish to support their families. The population in Gaza also suffers from serious malnutrition, in particular children. It is estimated that 60% of children in Gaza suffer from malnutrition.

On the other hand, there is a growing need for fish on a global scale and the Gaza area is a 40 km strip on the Mediterranean costline. Therefore, Gaza has a strong and long-standing marine culture. Due to high smuggling threats over the past few years, the fish industry in Gaza has reduced and consequently average price of fishfood has soared, thereby reducing the possibility for Gaza families to afford this important source of proteins.

The team of Nets of Peace, composed by 5 students (David Welch, Ohad Kot, Danielle Angel, David McGeady and Osher Perry) from Tel Aviv University, came up with the idea of creating a project to set up a fish industry in the Gaza strip. This project also meet environment-friendly criteria as it promotes environmental responsibility through the conservation and rehabilitation of the coastline on the basis of a ‘zero footprint policy’. Nets of Peace is based on the acronym BENEFIT,  which stands for the guiding lines of the project:The team has so far:

For more information on the project, visit the website of Nets of Peace: http://www.netsofpeace.org/

Meet the team in this video!