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July 2011

Fit Links: Break Your Cell Habit and Run Pain-Free

Written on July 29, 2011 at 4:17 pm , by

A sure sign it's time to unplug? You feel like you want to set your tech toys aflame! (Photo courtesy of iStockPhoto)

One sign it's time to unplug? You daydream about setting your tech toys aflame. (Photo courtesy of iStockPhoto)

This week’s fit links from around the web:

Watch This Video Before Heading Out This Weekend

Written on July 29, 2011 at 2:51 pm , by

Our 16-year-old selves did a lot of things that would make our now-adult selves cringe. (Bad haircut? Inappropriate outfit? Check and check.) But on a more serious note, past behaviors like tanning and skipping the sunscreen could have serious consequences on your health today. Watch the touching and informative video below to see what other people would tell their 16-year-old selves about skin cancer and how it has changed their lives. We can’t turn back time, but perhaps this PSA, put together by the David Cornfield Melanoma Fund, would encourage more people to take care of their skin and help prevent future cases of melanoma.

More from FITNESS: Skin Cancer Prevention Facts

Tell us: What would you tell your 16-year-old self?

3 Ways to Jazz Up Your Water

Written on July 29, 2011 at 11:58 am , by

Drinking waters never been tastier. (Photo courtesy of Scott Little)

Drinking water has never been tastier. (Photo by Scott Little)

With the nonstop heat wave that keeps hitting us this summer, my water consumption is at an all-time high. I’ve surpassed the recommended eight glasses a day by noon, and between pee breaks and refilling at the water cooler I’m starting to feel a little H2O burn out.

To stay hydrated without resorting to high calorie drinks, I’ve gone on a mission to perk up my water. After some extensive research (otherwise known as me randomly sticking things in water and seeing how they taste), I’ve come to a conclusion: You can put just about anything in water! Below, my three favorite extras that don’t rack up extra calories or a ton of sugar.

  • Mint leaves: One or two of these adds a subtle hint of flavor to your water without completely overpowering it. It’s also an aphrodisiac, so slip a few in your hubby’s glass too!
  • Fruit ice cubes: Pour your favorite low-cal juice like orange or cranberry into a standard ice cube tray. Once frozen, pop them in to your water for your sipping pleasure.
  • Go coconut: Coconut water is fat-free and has zero sugar. It’s packed with electrolytes and actually hydrates you faster than water. Pick this guy over a sugary sports drink to fuel up.

Now tell us: How do you jazz up your water?

Fashion Diaries: Kristy Lin Jewelry

Written on July 29, 2011 at 10:17 am , by

We always love finding new brands to feature and we think we may have found the perfect one to put a smile on your face. Kristy Lin is the most adorable new jewelry line that is sure to add some subtle humor to your everyday look. Designs include earrings in the shape of hats and men’s ties, stackable rings that create a man’s face and a woman’s face (madame and monsieur—how cute!), and bracelets and necklaces with the silhouette of a mustache and lips. Seriously, does it get any better than this?

Take a look at some of our favorite pieces. Tell me you don’t want them those “ear” earrings! (Photos courtesy of KristyLin.com)

EAR_EARRINGS

For more jewelry finds, Read more

Foodie Chat: Q&A with Divya Gugnani

Written on July 28, 2011 at 6:09 pm , by

(Photo courtesy of Divya Gugnani)

(Photo courtesy of Divya Gugnani)

The Food Network Atlantic City Food and Wine Festival kicks off today—what more could you want out of a long weekend than sand, surf, tasty eats and Food Network star sightings?

For those of you who can’t make it to the Jersey shore to hobnob with Guy Fieri and friends, we caught up with Divya Gugnani, founder of foodie site BehindtheBurner.com and author of the new book, Sexy Women Eat. She’ll be sharing her secrets for eating well and whipping up low-cal cocktails at the festival tomorrow night. We asked her to dish her tips and recipes a day early—enjoy!

What inspired you to write Sexy Women Eat?

I’ve always had a positive relationship with food. I LOVE to eat and truly enjoy cooking. I’ve looked at the women around me and seen them struggle with weight issues, eating disorders and unhealthy food habits. I decided to write a book sharing my food philosophy and secrets for how I enjoy my meals and stay fit.

What are your tips for eating well during the summer months?
Set aside time to make your own meals. During the summer months we’re enjoying the weather and socializing more, but it’s still important to cook (saving you tons of calories compared to eating out). When you’re out and about you have to ask yourself, is what I’m doing more important that taking care of myself?

Staying hydrated is also incredibly important. Many people mistake thirst for hunger and eat instead of drinking a glass of water. Read more

Fit Blogger We Love: Beneath It All

Written on July 28, 2011 at 4:11 pm , by

Kelly after finishing the Iron Girl half-marathon in Florida this April.

Kelly from Beneath It All has inspired us with her intense training regimen for her upcoming half Ironman. As a recent college grad who is in the midst of wedding planning, this girl is taking on a lot of changes with no fears! We love her positive outlook on life, her family of fitness enthusiasts and the coupon clipping tips she posts to help us all save some hard-earned cash. Read on for more about her fitness dreams and how she reaches the finish line.

I’m happiest when I’m: With my two dogs and fiance, Anthony! We adopted our dogs from shelters and giving them a good life is really important to us.

On my fit life list: I hope to complete a full Ironman someday. I’m currently training for my first half Ironman and am loving the training! I can’t imagine how awesome it would feel to cross the finish line of a full. That 140.6 car sticker is calling my name!

My “I Did It” moment: When I first got into running, I randomly signed up for a 15-mile trail race with friends. I had only completed a couple of 5Ks previously, and my longest training run was 10 miles. No other finish line has ever felt so good.

My biggest indulgence: I have a huge sweet tooth! I eat ice cream almost every night.

My motivation comes from: My desire to live a healthy and full life. I have the word “live” tattooed on my foot to remind myself to live every day to the fullest. I never want to regret not accomplishing my goals.

Do you have a favorite fit blogger you want us to highlight? Leave a comment below or email blog@fitnessmagazine.com.

The Latest Yoga Craze

Written on July 28, 2011 at 2:44 pm , by

Image trying this out on the water! (Photo courtesy of Jody Kivort)

When reading about our editor’s latest summer adventures, it made me think about my own wish list this season—paddleboarding. I’ve always wanted to try it, not to mention get some ripped arms like fellow paddleboarding lovers Jennifer Aniston and Cameron Diaz!

But after seeing this new fitness craze I think I’ve just modified my summer feat. Introducing yoga paddleboarding! Originating in Hawaii, yogis decided to combine these two popular sports to create the ultimate fitness class. Classes run approximately two hours with a quick intro on how to navigate around your board before heading out on the water. Though not available everywhere, classes are popping up in cities like Florida, California, Seattle and Washington.

I often steer clear of yoga classes in NYC because of the cramped spaces, and lack of AC, but on a paddleboard out on the water all my excuses are completely invalid! Watch the video below to see how it works. Pretty cool, right?

Now tell us: Do you want to try yoga paddleboarding?

Weekend-Proof Your Workout

Written on July 28, 2011 at 11:30 am , by

Photo courtesy of SparkPeople

Photo courtesy of SparkPeople

Follow the seven tips below to make exercise a priority all week long—not just during the work week!

7  Tips for Fitting in Weekend Workouts

  1. Turn workout time into play time. Think working out on the weekend has to be at the gym? Think again! The weekend is the perfect time to take your workout outdoors for a hike, a bootcamp at the park, or a bike ride at a nearby trail. If the weather in your area is less than ideal, gather some buds for an indoor basketball game, a workout DVD or even a visit to that indoor rock climbing wall.
  2. Schedule some “me” time. The best part about weekdays is that our schedule is consistent and more or less on autopilot. Make your weekend more like a weekday by setting a schedule for Saturday and Sunday. Not every second has to be laid out (where’s the fun in that?), but schedule an hour or two that’s just for you. Use the time to be active doing something you really enjoy like Zumba, running or Spinning class, followed by some relaxation time.
  3. Make housework a workout. Most of us have to do at least a few chores over the weekend, so if you’re short on time, transform your housework into a workout! Put on some tunes and see how quickly you can do more physical chores like vacuuming, scrubbing the bathtub, mopping the floors, mowing the grass or washing the windows.
  4. Try something new. Take advantage of your more flexible two-day schedule by trying something new or going somewhere different for your usual workouts. Whether it’s a new group fitness class , running at a new park or even joining a game of softball with some pals from work, trying something new can work your muscles and brain in new ways.
  5. Set a goal (or two). The best way to achieve any goal starts with setting one! If you really want to be more active on the weekends, set a goal to do so. It can be as simple as saying you want to walk every Saturday for a month. Don’t forget to reward yourself when you succeed.
  6. Grab a buddy. We all know how important it is to have support when trying to lose weight and get healthy. So be sure to include your friends and loved ones in your weekend workout plans. Ask a bud to try that new trail with you or turn your usual movie date night into something more active like bowling. Not only will you be burning calories, you’ll be making way more memories than just sitting around watching television.
  7. Fuel your body right. It’s hard to want to work out if you’re not fueling your body for success. Studies show that people tend to make poorer food choices—and eat more—on the weekends. Sure, the occasional late night out, cocktail or order of chicken wings won’t really hurt you, but if these weekend habits become the norm—or turn into a weekend splurge-fest—they could get in the way of your fitness goals. Who really feels like working out after eating too much, sleeping too little or drinking one too many? Make it a priority to get adequate sleep, drink plenty of water and eat healthy meals and snacks.

More from SparkPeople:

10 Tips for a Healthier Weekend

Surviving the Weekend

The Web’s Best Free Weight-Loss Plan

Kickin’ It At the World Cup: Reflections From Soccer Player Amy Rodriguez

Written on July 28, 2011 at 9:48 am , by

(Photo courtesy of PUMA)

Amy's not just going to hand the ball to her opponents. (Photo courtesy of PUMA)

A few weeks ago, all eyes turned to women’s soccer. The sport that rarely gets the attention it deserves (those ladies are serious athletes!) finally got its due when the U.S. team made it all the way to the 2011 FIFA Women’s World Cup Finals against Japan. The Japanese won in a nail-biting shootout, but the tenacity of the Americans throughout the tournament surely inspired a new generation of soccer enthusiasts stateside.

Since coming in second place is still a “win” in our books, we wanted to catch up with one of Team U.S.A.’s stars, Amy Rodriguez, about her feelings post-World Cup.

What has been the most memorable part of this year’s World Cup experience for you?

Winning the quarterfinal game against Brazil. It was so dramatic, exciting, and exhausting. My team worked so hard to come back and tie the score up in the last minute of double overtime. Winning in a penalty shoot out made the game even more memorable.

It was amazing to see and feel the support we got from fans in the U.S. while we were in Germany, and I hope the excitement around women’s soccer is something that will keep growing!

Which is more exciting: The Olympics or the World Cup?

They both are in their own way, and both only come around once every four years. The World Cup is exciting because it is a soccer-specific tournament and the best 16 teams in the world compete. All different sports compete at the Olympics, including soccer, so the events are filled with the world’s best athletes.

Keep reading to find out how Amy trains her quick feet and to discover what artist pumps her up before a match.

Read more

Bye, Bye Bananas?

Written on July 27, 2011 at 3:50 pm , by

Stock up on bananas before it's too late! (Photo by Blaine Moats)

Well this is upsetting. Cavendish bananas, aka your average yellow banana you grab at the grocery store may be extinct as early as 2015. This report from the-scientist.com states that the fruit has been on a 20-year losing battle with a fungus that is wiping out the industry in certain parts of the world, including Asia, Australia, and now South America.

Sadly, this isn’t the first time bananas have gone through this! Cavendish bananas replaced another type of banana as the leading crop after they too experienced a fungal infection and were wiped out.

As someone who enjoys a good slice of banana bread and the occasional banana pancake, I’m extra bummed about this because of all the health perks bananas have. Check some out below:

  • They can lower your blood pressure. High potassium levels found in bananas keep your BP in check, which in turn lessens your chance for a heart attack and stroke.
  • Bananas are a perfect snack. Just over 100 calories and high in fiber they fill you up and are a much healthier alternate to chips, cookies, and anything else you find yourself wanting to munch on.

Now tell us: What’s your favorite way to eat a banana?