Written on May 29, 2013 at 1:38 pm , by Samantha Shelton
WNBA player Essence Carson knows what it’s like to put in hard work. The young basketball star has been playing since she was six, honing her skill until she was eventually drafted in 2008. But don’t think that’s the only thing the 26-year-old is great at: Carson also indulges her second passion by producing and performing music. After a tough day of training, we chatted with the multitalented athlete to find out what a day in the life is like when a new season is kicking into gear.
First, how did you get involved in basketball? What made you want to pursue a career in it?
It was just something a lot of the kids in the neighborhood played when I was younger. My dad was into basketball and it was just a common interest for all of us. And then my dad really loved basketball. I played in the neighborhood maybe when I was like 6 or 7. But I didn’t start playing organized until I was 11. I just had a love for the game and wanted to be the best at it. When I got drafted I was like, “Wow, this is really happening.”
You have a lot of accolades attached to your name. Any standout moments or favorite memories for you?
When I was in college, making it to the national championship game was a standout moment. Getting drafted was major for me, obviously, as well as making the all-star team in 2011.
I read that you also have a big passion for music. What are some songs we can find on your playlist?
You’ll find some Jay Z and Miguel. I love Miguel. You’ll find of my own music, too. I listen to a lot of different stuff.
If you weren’t a basketball player, would you be doing music?
Yes. I’ve been playing music since I was nine years old, and my first performance is something I’ll never forget. I play the piano, the sax, the electric bass and a little bit of drums here and there. Right now, I produce and perform when I’m not playing basketball, so I’ve gotten good at managing my time. But yeah, if I wasn’t a basketball player, I would pursue music full-time.
Written on May 28, 2013 at 10:04 am , by Samantha Shelton
If you’re looking for a charismatic personal trainer who knows how to turn into a drill sergeant the second it’s time to work, look no further than Dolvett Quince. He makes up one-third of the trainer team on hit reality show The Biggest Loser, and now that we’ve met the man, we see why so many of the contestants love him. In NYC to promote Dr. Scholl’s Active Series Insoles, Quince put us through a quickie circuit full of step-ups, squats and burpees, convincing us to keep pushing with his mega-watt smile shining after every set. We chatted with him in between gulps of water afterward to find out his favorite part of being on Loser.
Why did you choose the moves that you did for us in this workout?
Everything that I do is a combination movement. I love combinations. Why? Because I don’t have a lot of time. Most people that I train don’t have a lot of time. So what can I do to work the glutes, the legs, the shoulders and the core all at the same time? Do more than one movement in more than one way.
Do you like to do a lot of workouts just using body weight?
I love weights personally. Unfortunately, a lot of people don’t have them in their homes or offices. I like to show people they don’t need a gym or weights to get in a great workout. You can still do amazing things using just your body weight.
What are some of your favorite workouts personally?
The combination movements. I’m a huge fan of squats, lunges, core stuff, chest. I love doing both cardio and strength training every time I workout. Commit the same time frame – 10 minutes here, 8 minutes there – to maximize my time; maximize my results.
Written on May 27, 2013 at 10:33 am , by Samantha Shelton
As a cohost of CBS This Morning, it’s safe to say Norah O’Donnell spends her fair share of time on the go. Between waking up at the crack of dawn to head to work, taking care of her kids, reporting from major news events (check out Instagram for her coverage on the tragic Oklahoma tornado) and squeezing in her own sweat sessions, we think she’s a bit like superwoman. To help bring her back down to our human level, and let you get to know the woman behind the anchor’s desk, we decided to play a little game. So Norah, would you rather…
Workout in the morning or at night?
Afternoon. I can’t really do it in the morning because I have to be here at 4:30am and it’s hard enough getting here on time! So usually it will be sometime in the afternoon after I’ve left the office. I don’t like exercising at night because it totally revs me up and I would have trouble falling asleep.
Run or Spin?
Run. I run and do P90X, but I don’t do it every day like you’re supposed to. I’ll do it like two times a week and then I try to run 2 or 3 times a week. And then my kids do swim time three times a week and while they do that I’ll work out in the gym that’s right next door.
Run a 5K or a marathon?
5K. I’ve never run a marathon before; I greatly admire people who run marathons. I mean 26.2 miles – that .2 matters! – it’s not easy. It requires incredible dedication and endurance, and I think it can be really tough on the body. For me, the shorter distances are what I favor.
Run alone or with friends/family?
I like to run by myself. It’s kind of my only alone time during the day. When I leave work, I go and be with my kids or do some kind of work or social-related event. So for me, running is kind of my private time. But I do run regularly with my husband, who runs much faster than I do. So that is certainly a workout. And I have girlfriends that I run with when I’m in DC.
Written on May 23, 2013 at 1:58 pm , by Samantha Shelton
Ever wonder what goes on behind-the-scenes in Hollywood, where celebs strut their stuff and their publicists work tirelessly to make sure they look good? If so, then we recommend picking up The Star Attraction by Alison Sweeney. Available now, the first fiction novel from the host of The Biggest Loser takes us into the world of Sophie Atwater, one of the best publicists in Los Angeles. She loves her boyfriend, Jacob, her job and the thrill of working with the stars. But when hottie actor Billy Fox (think Ryan Gosling-level here, ladies) becomes a client, Sophie’s life quickly spirals out of control as sparks fly and she starts to fall for a client for the first time.
We breezed through this story in a few days, making it a great choice for devouring while lounging poolside or at the beach. Just don’t forget the sunscreen because you might get sucked into the story and lose all track of time. Don’t say we didn’t warn you!
And if you want to know what compelled Sweeney to pen her first piece of fiction, we’ve got you covered there, too. We sat down with the actress and author to find out whether the scenes she created come from experience, and if we can expect a sequel sometime soon.
What made you want to dive into fiction writing?
I love to read. I gobble books up left, right and sideways. But I also love telling stories. And being apart of Days of Our Lives for 20 years has given me a million stories to tell. I’m so grateful for that. But you know, sometimes it doesn’t go the way I would want it to go as a fan. I wanted to write something that had the ending that I wanted it to have. It was so fun to get sucked into this girl’s life and tell her story.
You’ve said you read all of the time. Who are some of your favorite authors?
Well, my favorite author alive today is Jodi Picoult.
Yes, it was amazing! I did this book club on Twitter and Facebook and we read it right when it came out. It was amazing. She’s so inspiring and I just love her controversial topics. She’s amazing.
OK, back to your book. Sophie seems like she’s at a very different point in her life than where you are. Did you relate to her at all, or did you pull from your own experiences when creating her character?
Oh yeah, there’s a lot of her that’s in me, and vice versa. I think that her story is so interesting to me because she is growing and learning and finding herself, and that’s such a great thing for people to see and relate to. And the steamy, fun, romantic stuff – all the red carpet gossip – it’s all stuff I’ve seen in Hollywood, been a part of or witnessed, so it was fun to pull the curtain back a little bit.
Written on May 10, 2013 at 9:24 am , by FITNESS Intern
Written by Carrie Stevens, editorial intern
Sadly, chances are most of us know someone who’s been affected by breast cancer. Many of us know about the Susan G. Komen 3-Day walk program to help raise funds in the fight against the deadly disease. But a new campaign has come to town for the younger women looking to get involved—Young Women Walking (YW2)—and we’re ready to don our hottest pink hues in support.
Designed for women between the ages of 16 and 23, YW2 lets participants experience one day of the Komen 3-Day walk. While the 3-Day walk has women cover 60 miles in three days and raise $2,300, the YW2 contingent will clock 20 miles and raise $750. Sounds like a great way to dip your toes into the water, right?
Here’s what we really love: While spending the day alongside their elders, the YW2 girls learn breast cancer facts and discuss action steps necessary to reduce their own risk. Forget the clichés: knowledge is power.
Oh, and don’t forget about the after party! After completing a day on their feet, walkers celebrate with a pink (of course!) party and enjoy well-earned foot massages, inspirational speakers and a dance party.
Now you tell us: What’s the farthest you’ve walked in one day?
Written on May 9, 2013 at 11:55 am , by FITNESS Intern
Written by Carrie Stevens, editorial intern
Looking to re-energize your sweat sessions this spring? Instead of automatically blasting our favorite tunes, we’re listening to—wait for it—audiobooks. Macmillan Audio launched its “Listen While You Work Out” campaign, aimed to help people get in shape while listening to audiobooks. We plugged into Barbara Taylor Bradford’s Secrets From The Past, and were pretty impressed with how engaged in the story we became while still busting out a quality workout.
Here’s the rundown: lead character Serena Stone is a 30-year-old American photojournalist who’s covered wars in the Middle East. After her famous photojournalist father dies unexpectedly, Stone starts working on his biography. At the same time, a former flame returns after serving on the front lines overseas as a photojournalist, and he suffers from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). While helping with his recovery, Stone stumbles upon a secret that sparks a series of events that can change everything she thought she knew about her own family.
Thanks to great narration, compelling characters and intriguing plot lines, Secrets From The Past made our workouts pass in a flash. Try it for yourself—you may sweat a bit longer just to find out what happens! In fact, one of our Fit Bloggers We Love, Meghann Anderson of Meals and Miles, is a big fan of playing books on the run. “You can only listen to the same song over and over again before you start to hate your iPod,” she says. “Lately I’ve been seriously obsessed with audiobooks; I just finished Stephanie Meyers’ The Host. It’s easy to get lost in a good story and the miles fly by.”
For a wide variety of audiobooks, check out the Macmillan Audio website, or Audible.com. There are more than 100,000 downloadable books to choose from, and Audible allows you to switch between listening and reading without losing your spot. Decide you don’t like your first pick? No sweat—swap it for another at no extra cost. Happy reading!
Now you tell us: If you could have any book on audio, what would it be?
Written on May 8, 2013 at 12:32 pm , by FITNESS Intern
Written by Carrie Stevens, editorial intern
Care to step into the ring with 22-year-old amateur boxer Mikaela Mayer? Chances are this former model will knock you out—figuratively and literally. In 2012, she secured the title of U.S. National Champion and brought home bronze and gold medals from the World Championships and Continental Games, respectively. The Los Angeles native was an alternate in the London Games (the first year women could compete), and has her sights set on gold in Rio. We talked training and being bikini-body ready for summer (have you seen her abs?), plus her genius secret for keeping that sweet tooth in check.
How did you discover boxing?
I signed up for Muay Thai at a gym near my house, and was practicing to keep myself busy. A few months in, I suffered a slight back injury that prevented me from kicking, so my trainer made me take boxing fights to develop my hands. Once I tried it, fell in love and never went back! I remember telling myself only two or three months in that I was going to be the best female fighter in the world.
Clearly that’s working out! How often do you train?
When I’m in camp for a tournament, it’s six days a week, two to three times a day for six weeks. It’s nothing but eat, sleep, train, repeat! The workouts will vary week to week, but it’s a mix of interval running, swimming, strength training, boxing and sparring three to four times a week.
Well, that must keep you bikini-body ready year-round, right?
Even when I don’t have major competitions coming up, working out is still a part of my everyday routine. Partly because I enjoy getting stronger and more skillful and partly because getting back in shape after you have let yourself go is too hard! So I always try to maintain. Staying in tip-top shape requires working out consistently. You can’t make excuses for skipping the gym. It needs to be a priority.
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 May 6, 2013 at 11:11 am , by mohrresults
A few months ago, we were reminded during “heart month” about how heart disease kills way too many women. As the seasons change and some of us feel reinvigorated to revamp their diets and routine, we want to urge you to remember these super-simple steps to reduce your chances of heart disease. By employing these easy strategies, you’re helping to make sure you don’t wind up a statistic.
1. Engage in at least 30 minutes of structured physical activity, 5 days/week. This isn’t for weight loss but basic heart health. Whatever exercise you like — walking, cycling, weight lifting, swimming — works, though variety is ideal. No matter how busy you are, everyone has the time, so try to make it!
2. Stand up. Sitting is the new smoking. Where can you find time in your day to stand and move , beyond structured physical activity? Maybe rather than watching TV, you go for a family walk before or after dinner. Start a walking group at work or investigate stand-up desks if you work at home. If you have dogs, take them for a walk instead just letting them out back. There are a lot of opportunities to move — you just need to be creative, take control and make a conscious effort to make you a priority.
3. Eat more omega-3 fats. Omega-3 fats are amazing for us. The best way to get them in the diet is from foods like wild seafood (salmon, tuna, sardines, anchovies), among others. Read more
Written on April 29, 2013 at 3:29 pm , by Colleen Moody
As someone who is feverishly planning her own nuptials, I came to a realization I’m sure many brides arrived at much quicker than I did: Weddings are expensive! To then even think about shelling out beaucoup bucks on a pricey boot camp tailored toward brides made me want to curl up in a ball (or elope, though I’m not sure Mom would be too pleased about that).
Luckily, The White Gown, a bridal boutique in Dumbo, Brooklyn understands that brides want to look great despite their budget and are setting up a series of public workout sessions this summer in NYC at Pier 46 in Greenwich Village. Workouts will be led my Molly Winter Stewart of Molly Winter Fitness, and will be designed to hit the spots most visible on your wedding day based on your dress shape–mermaid, halter, strapless and backless. The best part? You can cross “find fitness plan” off your very long wedding to-do list without spending a single penny.
Fit to Be Bride Bootcamp starts Saturday, May 18 at 9:30 a.m., at Pier 46 in Manhattan. Sign up by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
More from FITNESS: Vow to Stress Less: Wedding Day Tips from Brides