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Bees are a worthwhile investment for any homesteader. Although it comes with great payoff, beekeeping has a learning curve. Here’s a quick overview of what to expect when harvesting honey from your bees.

Step 1: Access the hive

Most beekeepers use a smoker to safely access the hive to harvest honey. Smoke the entrance of the hive and remove the lid, smoking the top. This pushes bees away from the area you’ll be working in. Gently remove the cover; you may need to use a special tool to pry it off if it’s covered in beeswax.

Step 2: Remove bees

To harvest honey from a frame, you’ll need to remove bees from the area. There are multiple methods for this, but the simplest is a DIY bee vacuum. Place the honeycomb frames in an empty frame holder as you collect more honeycomb. Once you’ve removed the frames you want, reseal the hive and replace the bees. Remember to always wear protective beekeeping gear!

Step 3: Remove wax

The precious honey is sealed up inside the protective beeswax. You can remove these beeswax caps with a butter knife, or you can also purchase a specialized capping knife. Tip: Save this beeswax to make homemade candles; it smells amazing.

Step 4: Extract and store honey

For this step, you’ll need a tool called a honey extractor. This gadget spins the honeycomb and collects it at the bottom of a drum. Open the spigot on the drum and filter the honey through a sieve and cheesecloth. Filtering prevents wax and other debris from finding its way into your honey.

Once filtered, the honey is ready to be bottled and enjoyed. It can be stored in Mason jars, where it can be safely kept on a shelf for up to two years. But we have a feeling that it won’t last that long!

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How To Spot Common Running Mistakes And Turn Them Into Running Successes

It’s no secret that running is good for your physical and mental health. Running requires almost no equipment and you can run virtually anywhere; however, it is not as simple as it sounds. Whether you’re just getting into the sport or you’re a seasoned marathon runner, ensure you aren’t making these four common running mistakes.

The Wrong Shoes for the Right Job

Wearing improper footwear can cause your feet blisters and irritation, but it can also hinder your form. It is best to visit a specialty store. The excerpt can measure your gait (every one’s is different) to help you determine the best fit for your foot. Runners’ shoes should facilitate strengthening of the feet and muscles, and not just absorb every impact – this means you will want to look for flexible, and maybe even roomy, running shoes. Although they aren’t necessary for every runner, barefoot running shoes are a good alternative to traditional sneakers. You’ll want to replace your running shoes annually.

Bad Form! Bad Form!

This is a trickier running mistake. Form is more important than time or distance. With improper form comes injury. Pay attention to every stride and determine whether you are landing on the heel or the sole of your foot. Landing on the heel of your foot can cause injury to your muscles and joints because your heel is not designed to absorb such an impact. Instead, practice landing on the sole of your foot with every stride – doing so will help to prevent knee or ankle pain. With this in mind, you can also prevent injury by taking smaller strides.

Improper Fueling Up

Carb-loading, although enticing, is not always necessary. To avoid stomach cramps, it is best to allow your body two hours to digest food before you start running. For short runs, eating a light snack fifteen minutes beforehand is acceptable. Less than 30 minutes after any run, you should eat a snack rich in proteins and carbohydrates to help with recovery. Always make sure your body is hydrated, and as a general rule of thumb, you can optimize your performance by eating a diet which consists of at least 80% healthy food. Because everybody is different, it is a good idea for runners to keep a record of which types of foods work best for them.

Sidestepping Warm-Ups and Recovery

Before every run, you should warm-up, which can include anything from walking to jumping jacks. You should be able to speak easily throughout your warm-up. You should also be stretching before and after your run. Not only does stretching help prevent injury to the joints and muscles, but it can actually help to improve a runner’s speed and endurance. You’ll also want to ensure that your body has properly recovered between runs. Taking rest days is vital to allow muscles to repair themselves. Recovery can also mean foam-rolling the muscles, which can aide in minimizing the dreaded next-day muscle pain.

As you can see, most running mistakes are easy to fix. Turn these don’ts into do’s, and you’ll hit the ground running!


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