Written on June 28, 2013 at 9:20 am , by Lauren Cardarelli
Have you ever read a novel where you can easily envision a celeb-filled movie adaptation? You know it’s going to be a good one when your imagination jumps to film…or the likes of Leo, Brad and Channing! Whatever comes first.
Love Me Anyway, the debut novel by former flight attendant Tiffany Hawk, was one of those books. Think of a toned down Fifty Shades of Grey with steamy love affairs, funny flight anecdotes and a whole lot more adventure and possibility with each new passport stamp.
After battling turbulent, lonely (even abusive) pasts, twenty-somethings Emily—a recent divorcée from a blue-collar California town—and KC—a promiscuous party girl in search of her estranged father—seek haven in the air. Despite emotional baggage, the girls’ lives take flight as they discover the true definition of freedom in both personal and national security contexts along the way.
The quick beach read weaves an intricate tale of love, friendship, moral conviction and self-discovery. Buckle up, it’s a bumpy but thrilling ride full of scandals and an all access behind-the-scenes look at the airline industry’s emotional side. While I hope one day I’ll see Megan Hilty play the role of the bubbly blonde KC, there’s one thing I know for sure: Love Me Anyway is the perfect accompaniment for the toes-in-the-sand, (low-cal) cocktail-in-hand summer bliss.
Written on June 19, 2013 at 9:47 am , by Lauren Cardarelli
Pigeons in Times Square are nothing new, but releasing tension in your hips and glutes with pigeon pose? Well, now we’re talking. For those in the New York area, be sure to kick off your summer with Athleta’s “Mind Over Madness” Friday yoga fest in celebration of the longest day of the year. From 7:30 a.m. to 9 p.m., thousands of yogis of all ages and skill levels will gather for Solstice in Time Square to salute the sun for free. Om, what!? As the president of Times Square Alliance and co-founder of the event Tom Tompkins said, “Solstice is an experiment in balance: The sun standing still in the sky on the longest day of the year, and thousands of yogis standing still, and being still, in the middle of the world’s busiest crossroad. It’s a metaphor for calming the mind amidst the madness of modern life.”
Sign up now (seriously, spots fill up fast) to end your week peacefully and restored in one of the five outdoor classes on Broadway Plazas. The first 1,200 pre-registered participants to arrive for each class will receive Athleta goodies and a chance to win giveaways in the yoga village. Good news for you non-New Yorkers, too: 40 store locations nationwide will also be commemorating, offering classes free of cost. Regardless, be sure to follow @Athleta on Instagram – and us at @FitnessMagazine - to participate in their “Seize the Solstice” contest and tag your photos with #SeizetheSolstice and #SolsticeTSq for prize packages. We’ll be there bright and early and hope to see you, too! To grab a mat and learn more, check out the Times Square Alliance website.
Written on June 7, 2013 at 11:17 am , by Lauren Cardarelli
As an actress, singer, dancer, author, model and mother, Vanessa Williams puts a triple-threat to shame. No wonder she looks so darn good at 50! Since being crowned the first African American to be crowned Miss America back in 1983, Vanessa has conquered television (Ugly Betty, Desperate Housewives and 666 Park Avenue, to name a few) and the big screen. Most recently, she returned to the Broadway stage in “The Trip to Bountiful.” But a busy life of fame and fortune doesn’t stand in Vanessa’s way for one of her biggest passion projects: spreading heart health awareness. With loved ones affected by heart disease, she turned to Bayer and WomenHeart to make a difference. We sat down with the starlet to learn more about how a simple handbag item can save lives and—of course—found out her age defying secrets. Read on for the full interview.
What inspired you to connect with Bayer aspirin in this whole initiative of the Handbags and Hearts?
I’ve been involved with heart issues for probably 10 years now. My grandmother died at 28 of a heart attack, my other grandmother died at 64 of a heart attack and so I’ve always been pretty vocal about women’s health issues—especially heart disease. They approached me about starting the campaign for Handbags and Hearts to increase the awareness of the correlation, being the number one killer for women, but also to have people—especially women—carry aspirin in their handbags, their purse, their pocketbooks. That’s important. And also to have women know that our symptoms are different than men’s. We want to drive people to the website so they can see what the symptoms are, be aware of them. Obviously if there is an issue, the first thing they need to do is call 911, but go in their bag and grab an aspirin because it’s shown that it helps to reduce further damage to the heart once a heart attack actually happens to you. It helps save lives. It’s been a fantastic partnership with WomenHeart and Bayer. Every person that pledges and every woman that goes online to pledge at the site, they’re going to donate up to $200,000.
Besides aspirin, how do you personally boost your heart health?
Cardio—I work out all the time. I mix it up, whether its treadmill at my house, or riding bikes. Recently, I’ve been doing in LA a gym called Body Theory, and there’s a class called “Drench.” You are literally drenched by the time you finish it! It’s an hour and a half of pure cardio and weights, which is fantastic and I’m obsessed with. In NY, I do at Westchester MMA a heavy bag fit class, which is everything from jumping rope to a lot of boot camp exercises. But then you tape up your hands—you do wraps—put your boxing gloves on and you fight a heavy bag, one of those big six-foot bags. You do combinations of that—kicks and punches. I like to mix it up.
So staying fit as a busy mother on four, killing it on Broadway…that must be really tough. How do you keep up with fitness and healthy food on-the-go?
You make time for it. Sometimes, you can’t. If you cant make it to the gym, try to get on a treadmill. If you cant get into the gym or to a treadmill, try walking. Try to do something for at least (for me) 45 minutes to an hour in a day, just to feel energized, and feel like my body is woken up, that I’ve felt all the endorphins, then start my day. And I like to work out in the morning—I can’t do afternoon or evening workouts. I need to do it in the morning. Get it done, start my day, feel the adrenaline. But you have to make time. Same thing with food. You have to make an effort. My biggest tip is to not have anything that I don’t want to eat in my house. It’s one thing when you know there are cookies that are calling your name and you know that every time you walk by the cupboard, they’re there and you’re battling with yourself—should I open it, should I not, should I have one…you’re going to torture yourself. So don’t have them in your house. As soon as, if I get a basket or gift bag filled with something delicious that I know I don’t want to wipe out the entire thing, I’ll bring it to the cast and say, “Put it on the green room table, enjoy!” I’ll have one and walk out of the room so I don’t have to wrestle with should I or should I not. Because food is good! It’s easy to make healthy choices, too. Living in this country, there are so many opportunities for anything, anything online, for sure. I fast, I do juice cleanses maybe three times a year. I’ve done BluePrint for probably five years. But that’s always great to kind of reboot your system, especially if you feel sluggish or a bit toxic like after holidays—you just want to clean yourself out and start fresh.
Written on June 6, 2013 at 3:24 pm , by Lauren Cardarelli
Listen up, New Yorkers! This Sunday, the world’s largest and fastest growing yoga and music platform Wunderlust will hold its annual Yoga in the City (YITC) at Chelsea Piers. Get your weekend warrior on by hitting the mat with the nation’s leading teachers and live music under the summer sun starting at 1:00 p.m. After all those down dogs, connect with fellow yogis and refuel with LYFE Kitchen (be sure to check out the good-for-you culinary demos!), LUNA and more! Plus, four lucky golden ticket winners—yes, similar to Charlie and the Chocolate Factory—will score a four-day entrance to the Wanderlust Festival in Vermont, June 18 through 23.
“Wanderlust Yoga in the City serves as an urban escape for yogis looking to capture the essence of our 4-day festivals, in the midst of their regular routines,” said Wanderlust co-founder, Jeff Krasno. “We are thrilled to return to New York, bringing together top-of-the line talent, likeminded sponsorships and a strong, mindful community of people that make up the fabric of our brand.”
Wanderlust Yoga’s core mission is “to create community around mindful living,” a value-based approach to eating well, being green and aware of today’s challenges, as well as practicing with a purpose for a healthy life and open heart. For more information and save a spot, visit Wanderlust’s website. Namaste!
Written on May 30, 2013 at 2:23 pm , by Lauren Cardarelli
Long before the time of Gatorade, GU or GPS watches, Bill Rodgers set a 2:09:55 American record at the Boston Marathon. There were no clocks or traffic control for his 1975 victory and medals were awarded only to the top three runners.
“You didn’t see lots of couples or families showing up to races,” the legendary long-distance runner reminisced in his new book-meets-memoir, Marathon Man, which he co-authored with Matthew Shepatin. “I didn’t know any running couples, and to see a woman runner was shocking. Some would think: Oh, good grief, there’s a woman runner. My attitude was: Good going!”
Running as both a sport and culture has made drastic strides over the past few decades—something I rarely considered before reading the 26.2-mile journey of the infamous “Boston Billy.” The book’s chapters alternate between play-by-plays from his first big victory and life prior to the momentous moment in history, as he falls in, out and back in love with running.
The pavement-pounding passion that burns within so many of us used to be quite the enigma “for freaks and fairies,” although seemingly simpler. Perhaps that ease was just the spirit Bill conveyed despite his quick pace. With each turning page, I craved the same sweat and pain that comes with training territory, but it was Bill’s natural, liberating take and mindset—something no gadget could ever provide—that I found truly moving.
“Running wasn’t an escape from life; rather it was an embrace of it,” Bill explained. “As I bounded along the park trail, I wasn’t sailing around in chaos. I was charging forward with purpose.” For Bill, rising to the top of the running world wasn’t about the fame or a collection of tech tees (well, those didn’t even exist yet!). It was a sense of freedom he couldn’t experience anywhere else.
Road races before the late 70s running boom were nuts and bolts affairs, a morale-boosting medicine that wasn’t so much about the time, but a hunt for the win. Bill sported ensembles from dumpster dives (stiff jeans in the colder months—yikes!) and hydrated with an old shampoo bottle. He ran the same way he did as a kid catching butterflies in the fields of Connecticut, even stopping to tie his shoes with six miles to go before winning the Holy Grail of marathons.
Yes, we now know a lot more in respect to the athletic do’s and don’ts, something we here at FITNESS love to keep you all up on. But if this invaluable book taught me anything, it’s to lace up my sneaks without much of a thought and simply enjoy the ride. Who knows, maybe I’ll leave my pop playlist behind, turning to the birds and sound of my own breath to pace my stride. This book is more than a good read. It’s my new Bible. Pages are folded, quotes are highlighted and it will be a go-to gift for my fellow running pals. You learn through Bill’s mistakes, defeats and triumphs, cheering him along as if the historical race is live. I won’t be fueling up on ketchup-smeared brownies anytime soon—sorry, Bill, that’s a little much—but I will pour myself full force into what Bill often referred to as his “channel.” His perseverance sparked a fire under my tread that lead to a race-filled summer. Who knows, maybe I’ll even go for the full 26.2 soon, too.
Now you tell us: Where do you find your run-spiration?
Written on May 13, 2013 at 9:28 am , by Lauren Cardarelli
According to a recent statement made by the American Heart Association, heart failure costs are expected to more than double by 2030, potentially costing Americans a whopping $244 per year! Time is tickin’ to beat the rising heart disease incidence—the leading cause of death in women. Insert omega-3 fatty acids, which has proven study after study to reduce the risks. Opt for food sources of supplements, says New York University adjunct nutrition professor and FITNESS Advisory Board member Lisa Young, Ph.D., R.D. It’s as easy peasy (and affordable) as cracking open a can of tuna—just two servings of seafood a week! Now isn’t that just fin-tastic?
Jazz up the versatile canned good with your favorite spices, Dr. Young suggests, and fold it into a cold pasta salad, wrap or form into burgers. Another great idea? Tasty crostinis made with thin baguette slices, fresh rosemary and Kalamata olives. No more fishing for heart health excuses. Here’s a quick and easy recipe that pairs perfectly with a glass of white for a summer soiree app. Your friends and heart will thank you later.
White Bean and Tuna Crostini
(Recipe courtesy of Melissa d’Arabian)
Makes 4 servings
- 10 thin baguette slices
- 4 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 small onion, finely chopped
- 2 teaspoons minced garlic
- 1 teaspoon rosemary, finely chopped
- 1/8 cup dry white wine
- 1 15-ounce can white kidney beans, drained
- 1 5-ounce can chunk-light tuna packed in water, drained and flaked
- 1/3 cup finely chopped red onion
- 1/4 cup finely chopped pitted Kalamata olives
- 1/2 cup minced fresh parsley leaves
- 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
Directions: Preheat oven to 350° F. Arrange baguette slices in single layer on baking sheet; brush slices with 3 tablespoons olive oil. Bake until bread is crisp and golden, about 15 minutes. Set aside. In a preheated skillet, cook onion, garlic, rosemary, and salt and pepper to taste in the oil over moderately low heat, stirring, until the onion is softened. Add the wine and simmer the mixture until the wine is reduced by half. In a food processor, purée the beans and the onion mixture and salt and pepper to taste, transfer the mixture to a bowl and chill it, covered, until it is cool. In a small bowl, toss together tuna, onion, olives, parsley, vinegar, and salt and pepper to taste.Spread bean puree among baguette slices and top with tuna salad. Garnish each with 1 small rosemary sprig.
For more recipe ideas and information on heart healthy fish, visit getrealaboutseafood.com.
Written on May 7, 2013 at 9:17 am , by Lauren Cardarelli
“Follow your heart and dare!” The DVF Loves Roxy Spring 2013 line’s motto perfectly describes the collaboration’s bold prints and playful silhouettes. In celebration of this laid-back but confident surfer sprit, Roxy pros Kelia Moniz and Monyca Byrne-Wickey flaunted the new bikinis for the camera after lending a hand in the design process. We sat down with the two gals to hear about their recent epic ride. Read on to learn about Kelia and Monyca’s swimsuit requirements, bikini-friendly diet and why fitness is not just a passion, but their lifestyle.
How did you two get into surfing?
KM: My dad was a professional surfer, so it was in the family. We were raised going to the beach—pretty much on the beach. My mom homeschooled us so surfing was a big part of my life. Every day after school (and during school!) we’d go to the beach and surf. And I have four brothers—it was something we did for fun. Being in Hawaii, there’s not much to do so the beach is pretty much our playground.
MBW: I grew up in a really small town—like literally two general stores, one gas station. There’s not a ton of stuff to do and so the beach is kind of like our playground. That’s where everybody goes after school to have fun. My family didn’t really surf. My sister surfed a bit, but I mostly learned from my two best friends growing up…they’re all boys and boys usually pick up surfing a lot easier than girls do so I always was trying to be as good as them and keep up. They’d really push me.
What do you look for when searching for the perfect suit?
MBW: Comfort is very important, especially in the water because you need something that’s tight to stay on, but at the same time you don’t want it digging into your neck or imprinting on your sides. You want it to stay on so a cross-back top is always really good. Something that’s not adjustable here [points to rib cage] so you’re not flying open. As far as bottoms go, I prefer regular—no ties or anything like that—because a lot of times you’re standing up on your board and you could get them caught on your hand…I want something that’s functional, comfortable and also looks cute on the beach. So if you’re going to the beach, the waves aren’t looking good and you decide you’re not going out, you’re still going to be really cute. And just as cute as all the other girls who aren’t surfing. I also prefer a smaller bottom just because I think it’s more flattering and you don’t get as crazy tan lines.
Do you draw your color/pattern inspiration from Hawaii or other places you visit during competition?
MBW: Sort of. I feel like there are some places we go that there’s definitely more of a style that we don’t see at home in Hawaii. In Australia, all the girls wear structured tops, like mostly bra tops and florescent colors. I do like a bra top, but I feel like for surfing, if you’re going to be out there for hours it can get really uncomfortable. It’s super cute; I still love it. I prefer pastels, florals and solids mostly. All the girls we travel with and all the girls on our team completely enjoy a different thing and the great thing is we’re all with Roxy and they have such a wide array of all that—there’s a print for everybody, there’s a style for everybody and there’s a color for everybody.
KM: [Monyca] loves, just like she said, a cross-back and I love triangle adjustable tops. I love tie sides.
MBW: And we’re super different surfers. I ride a short board and she rides a long board so she could even get away with wearing a bandeau because it’s not as rough.
KM: I’m above the water most of the time and I’m not duck diving where my top’s going to come off so I wear bandeaus all the time, especially to stay away from tan lines. Read more
Written on April 29, 2013 at 11:59 am , by Lauren Cardarelli
The second we entered Reebok CrossFit’s 5th Avenue box with trainer Megan May a few months back, we knew we were in for a sweaty, no-joke treat. Thanks to Megan’s can-do attitude and flawless technique demos (she made everything look so easy!), we pushed ourselves beyond our limits—box jumps, ring apparatuses and all. Megan thrives as a WOD motivator with an infectious fitness passion, alongside a background in gymnastics and professional bodybuilding. In our March Express, the 2009 World Natural Bodybuilding Federation’s “Ms. Fit Body” designed a routine full of dumbbell swings, Turkish get-ups and power deck squats to test even the biggest CrossFit critic. We approved! Read on to learn more about Megan, “bulkiness” misconceptions and why she believes strength is sexy.
Most of us are NYC transplants, how did you make your way to the Big Apple?
I was coaching for Mike and Nate, who own Reebok CrossFit 5th Ave, at their two locations in Miami, Reebok CrossFit Miami Beach and IMT CrossFit. When plans for the gym in NYC started to form, they asked if I would relocate. My first answer was “absolutely not.” My husband and I had just recently moved to South Beach from Atlanta and purchased a condo on the bay. I had no intention of leaving paradise. When I decided to ask them more about the relocation, they told me about the big plans for the flagship CrossFit box, and they were teaming up with Reebok to open on 5th Ave in New York. This was an unbelievable opportunity that I didn’t want to miss. Besides, I told myself that if I hated it, I could always move back.
How did get involved with CrossFit?
I first heard about CrossFit about four years ago from one of my best friends that had just left the Air Force and was training to become an Air Marshall. He told me about these crazy workouts called CrossFit they were using for training. I was a personal trainer and a figure competitor at the time, so I was always looking for new ways to spice up workouts. There was no CrossFit close, so I went to the CrossFit.com main page and pulled exercises and WODs to use in my training and bootcamps. It went right along with the type of training I was already doing and putting my clients through. It wasn’t until I moved to Miami to become the head trainer at the Gold’s Gym in South Beach, that CrossFit popped back into my life. Six months after moving there, what is currently Reebok CrossFit Miami Beach, opened across the street from my where we lived. My husband and I joined and were instantly hooked! Within six months I had earned my CrossFit Level 1 coaching certificate and was working out and training solely as a CrossFit coach and athlete.
What else do you do for working out besides CF?
I just started doing yoga, as a way to supplement my CrossFit training. It helps a lot with mobility, which is often overlooked. CrossFit hits every muscle group and energy system so I look just as good as I did when I was a figure competitions.
We all know why CF is great—but what’s your most persuasive reason for getting newbies involved?
It is so much FUN! I think CrossFit is one of the most fun ways to workout. When you participate in the group workout, you never have to work out by yourself. This helps push you and keeps you motivated to get through incredibly challenging exercises that might seem otherwise impossible. The community that has built up around CrossFit is truly amazing. Read more
Written on April 24, 2013 at 9:28 am , by Lauren Cardarelli
A lot has changed for skier Picabo Street since she took the Olympics by storm in the 1998 Super G. The gold medalist—who just last week was announced to be an analyst for Fox Sports’ Sochi 2014 Winter Games coverage—has transitioned to fit, working mommyhood by taking up a new taekwondo passion with her 9-year-old son and avoiding her kids’ leftovers at all costs. Read on to find out what she loves the most about her kick-ass routine, what she’s working on now and more.
- What was your favorite Olympic moment?
Surprisingly enough, my silver medal win in Lillehammer, because it was when I realized that I could do it and that I was Olympic caliber and that the gold was within my reach.
- Where do you keep you medals?
I rotate them around from safe place to safe place with lots of sharing in the meantime.
- How did you overcome the pressures of being such a young U.S. ski team member and then later on from your sponsors?
I always expected more from myself than anyone else did, so my pressure was greater, therefore easier to deal with. I looked at my coaches as partners and teammates and had more of a collaborative relationship with them, therefore, they were all a part of my victories, too.
- Was there one challenging moment in your past that really helped you to build a thick skin and to become the resilient spirit you are today?
Resiliency comes out of struggle usually and for me, mine was self-inflicted—showing up to U.S. Ski Team camp in 1990 out of shape and with a bad attitude. I realized then it would be up to me to get in shape, change my attitude and make my dreams come true. It was the door on the path to that dream closing in my face that forced me to be resilient.
- Any fitness-related goals you have your eye on now? What mantra helps you push through your workout?
Be a black belt in taekwondo. What I love about taekwondo is that I miss the workout, because I am too busy trying to kick and punch correctly! What gets me to the gym: “Failing to prepare is preparing to fail.” Once I’m at the gym: “Focus on what I have control over, anything else is just stress.”
Picabo has teamed up with Team USA sponsor Liberty Mutual Insurance to announce the search for 2013’s “Top 10 Responsible Sports Moments,” simple acts of sportsmanship and selflessness that occur on youth sports fields. “It’s a great cause and one near and dear to my heart as a mother of four boys who love to play sports,” she said. To submit a moment, go to ResponsibleSports.com or tweet a nomination using #RSMoments.
More from FITNESS:
- Ice Skating Legend Kristi Yamaguchi Dishes on the Winter Olympics & DWTS
- Pro Tennis Star Vika Azarenka on Staying Positive and Keeping Workouts Fun
- Olympic Gymnast McKayla Maroney on Getting Back Into the Gym and Finally Being Impressed
Written on April 10, 2013 at 1:30 pm , by Lauren Cardarelli
Tom Colicchio, renowned James Beard “Outstanding Chef” and Top Chef judge, takes a simple, produce-packed approach to cuisine, telling us that the one culinary skill everyone should know is how to properly season your dish. Don’t overcomplicate it! “Simple salt and pepper go a long way,” he said. We asked Tom about his kitchen must-haves, sandwich suggestions and how he keeps his kitchen safe from cross-contamination. Here’s what Bounty’s partner dished. (His salad recipe below is out of this world!)
What are five of your kitchen staples?
Beyond the right cleaning supplies—keeping the kitchen clean as you go is a must—my staples are pretty basic. All I really need are sharp knives, a cutting board, a couple of decent pots and pans and salt and pepper to season, and I’m ready to go.
How can we add healthy variety to break a monotonous diet funk?
Produce is the answer. I always start with produce whenever I’m developing a dish because seasonal ingredients allow you to add different flavors to a meal and give whatever protein you’re working with an entirely new spin. Proteins tend to remain the same, season to season, but vegetables change. Visit your local farmer’s market or supermarket and see what fruits and vegetables are in season. Once you figure out what’s in season, you can choose what protein you want to work with. You can create so many different, healthy meals by combining seasonal produce and protein and varying the base flavors with spices and cooking methods.
How can our readers lighten up their lunchboxes? Do you have a healthy sandwich suggestion?
I’ve noticed that people are becoming more aware of their diets as they adopt healthier lifestyles. I think people can lighten up lunch by eating less protein and turning to more vegetable-based diets. I like to take fresh salads and turn them into quick, portable lunches. For instance, if you make my fennel salad with yogurt vinaigrette, you could put it into a toasted whole wheat pita and grab it to go for a tasty and nutritious version of fast food.
If you could cook for any person—living or dead—who would it be?
I’d love to cook for—or with—Teddy Roosevelt. He was a big outdoorsman and had a huge appreciation for the natural beauty of America.
How do you keep your kitchen clean and safe from contamination?
I’m obsessive about keeping everything clean in the kitchen, both at home and on the job. Paper towels are a must—I use them to tidy up as I go instead of a dishcloth. You can actually cross-contaminate kitchen surfaces if you wipe up with a used, germy dishcloth. It can harbor and spread germs, so using a durable paper towel like new Bounty DuraTowel is a much more effective way to clean. And one sheet really goes a long way – I can mop up everything from sticky sauce spills on the counter top to cleaning spatters off the fridge which helps me keep my momentum going.
Fennel Salad with Yogurt Vinaigrette
1 bulb of fennel, trimmed and cored
1 head endive
1 apple, cored
½ cup of sheeps milk yogurt (plain or Greek yogurt can be used as substitutes)
2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon soy sauce
2 tablespoons chopped fresh herbs (mint, chive, cilantro, basil, parsley, etc.)
Pinch of cayenne pepper
Juice of one lemon
With a mandolin, thinly slice the fennel, cucumber and radishes and add the watercress and endive. For the vinaigrette, whisk together the yogurt, lemon, vinegar, soy sauce and cayenne and slowly add the olive oil. Add chopped fresh herbs. Toss the vegetables with the vinaigrette and serve.
Now tell us: How do you keep your culinary haven safe from germs?