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Models Who Score Points: A Look at the 2012 MBVT

Written on April 17, 2012 at 8:42 am , by

There are modeling competitions…and then there are models who compete.

We prefer focusing on the latter, and the athletic, crazy-cool Ludus Athletics Model Beach Volleyball Tournament in South Beach a few short weeks ago is a prime example of model behavior that may motivate you to start getting summer-ready! Pictures worth being jealous of:

There were eight modeling agencies that participated, each with about 12 players. Here, a few MC2 models set the mood for the tournament.

There were eight modeling agencies that participated, each with about 12 players. Here, a few MC2 models set the mood for the tournament. Photo by WorldRedEye.com.

Wilhelmenia and Runway face off!

Wilhelmenia and Runway face off! Photo by WorldRedEye.com.

There were three reality TV shows filming during the tournament! Here, a cast member from the CW's upcoming "The Catalina" gets carried away.

There were three reality TV shows filming during the tournament! Here, a cast member from the CW's upcoming "The Catalina" gets carried away. Photo by WorldRedEye.com.

There were two courts and more than a thousand spectators each day. Photo by WorldRedEye.com.

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5 Reasons to Plan a Get-Fit Vacay Like Brad and Angelina!

Written on April 13, 2012 at 6:05 pm , by

Waves provide the music for yoga in this amazing beachside studio.

I’m sure you saw the big news today—Brad and Angelina are engaged! We were able to spend a few days in their lives during a visit to the posh resort Caneel Bay on the U.S. Virgin Islands, where Brangelina have spent weeks enjoying the property’s seven beaches while they rented expansive “Cottage 7.” Who knows…maybe they’ll make a return visit for more of the unique cuisine and unbeatable views for their honeymoon? Read on for five reasons we loved the resort and why you might want to check it out too (besides the possibility of a star sighting).

Rent a kayak, paddleboard or snorkel gear for a break from your hammock.

  1. Yoga overlooking the ocean. See photo above—enough said!
  2. Nearly private beaches for guests. No wonder Mr. and Mrs. Pitt loved Caneel Bay. The secluded nature of the property on St. John means that you’ll be able to unplug and detach from the outside world, if you like, and recharge your batteries with a book in a hammock or while building sandcastles with the kids.
  3. Active adventures are available for all interests. We opted for a tapas-style vacation, with bites of everything from kayaking and sailing to snorkeling, hiking and of course, yoga. But you can learn to paddleboard, windsurf and more if that’s more your speed! All gear is ready and waiting for you to rent and experts are on-hand for lessons.
  4. Indulgence in culinary and calorie-free delights. Fresh fare like gazpacho and seasonal fruit are in large supply and have rarely tasted better. (Maybe they were even more decadent when Brad and Angie had the best chefs from around the island cook for them privately in their cottage!) The real treat can be found in the massage cabanas, which are filled with flowers and also overlook the beach. When you have views like these, why not?
  5. Wake up with sand in your toes and fall asleep with waves in your ears. Coming from the mainland, the island scenery and tempo are a definite change of pace. Bonus: No paparazzi!

Now tell us: If you didn’t need to worry about a budget, where would your ideal vacation or honeymoon location be?

The Get-Fit Benefits of Bodyboarding

Written on February 8, 2012 at 10:16 am , by

Bitzer started competing at age 17. (Photo courtesy of Maciel Dias)

Hitting a sandy beach may be the last thing on your mind in early February, but certain athletes train and compete in the surf year-round! To beat the winter blues, we caught up with Brazilian-born bodyboarding pro Roberta Bitzer to discover how she stays in swimsuit shape and why she loves the sport (which is like surfing, but instead of standing on a longboard, you’re lying on your stomach on a smaller, lighter board).

  • Make it a family affair. “Growing up, I was inspired to start bodyboarding because I saw how much fun my brother was having surfing. While in college, I took a trip to surf in New Jersey where I met pro surfer Jason Bitzer, who I later married! We’re still together and are out in the waves daily near our Hawaii home.”
  • Fear not. “Riding without risk of getting injured by hard equipment, like a surfboard, was a big draw for me. A toned body is a great reward in addition to the fun you’re having!”
  • Head to the islands. “Hawaii offers the best waves in the world for experienced riders, but any beach with a well-defined wave will make for a fun day.”
  • Score a strong core. “The sport trains the upper body, core and legs, but when I’m off the board, I focus a lot on core strengthening workouts. Since you’re laying on your stomach—and land on it after an aerial move—a strong ab and back muscles lead to a long and healthy career.” [Bitzer especially enjoys resistance tubing exercises.]

Now tell us: What warm-weather workouts are you most looking forward to?

Fun, Fit Getaway: W Retreat and Spa, Vieques Island, Puerto Rico (As Seen on The Bachelor!)

Written on January 30, 2012 at 4:52 pm , by

The amazing beach at the W Retreat & Spa - Vieques where bachelor Ben and Courtney enjoyed their date. (Photo courtesy of W Hotels)

Tonight on The Bachelor, Ben and his eligible bachelorettes take their love show on the road, jetting to gorgeous Vieques Island, Puerto Rico, where they stay at the W Retreat & Spa. Apparently the romantic, tropical locale has contestant and former FITNESS cover girl Courtney feeling frisky: She leads Ben to the W Beach for a late-night swim (skinny dip, perhaps?), the show’s promo teases.

We can’t wait to watch—to catch all the drama and the beautiful Vieques backdrop.

FITNESS was recently invited to stay at the laid-back luxe retreat (alas, not while Ben was there) and explore Vieques. We found a perfect mix of adventure and relaxation—an ideal destination for a fun, fit couples trip or an active girlfriend getaway. If you go, check out these top hits on our Fit List:

  • Morning yoga: Start each day with a 90-minute traditional morning yoga class on the outdoor deck behind the W’s SWEAT fitness center. (The class sometimes takes place on the beach when weather allows.) Non-yogis: Work out on the brand new cardio machines and weights in the fitness center or hit some balls at the nearby SWING tennis courts.
  • Hiking and kayaking adventure: Black Beard Sports, located next to SWEAT, offers several custom guided tours of the island. We hiked to a nearby breathtaking vista and then kayaked to Red Beach for a gourmet picnic. See if Mark is available to be your guide.
  • Biking: You can also rent a bike at Black Beard. For a scenic and moderately challenging four-mile spin*, take a right on the road (Route 200) from the retreat and head past the airport to Starfish Beach, where you may spy bright red starfishes on the sand. On your way back, hang a left to ride out to the end of the mile-long Mosquito Pier for a stunning look back at the island. You’ll pass dozens of the island’s free roaming horses along your route. (*The folks at Black Beard can provide detailed directions.)
  • Bioluminescent bay tour: Don’t leave Vieques without taking a nighttime kayak tour on the magical bio bay, which is filled with microscopic organisms that release a chemical whenever there’s movement in the water, making it glow. Every paddle stroke creates a trail of light. The W can arrange your outing with a company such as Abe’s Snorkeling & Bio Bay Tours. Request a tour with Abe himself, if he’s available. He’s a total trip and excuse enough to visit Vieques.

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Jump Into Summer In Style

Written on May 27, 2011 at 2:41 pm , by

Summer kicks off this weekend, and for many of us that means heading to the beach, whipping out the grill for some burgers and spending time with our family and friends. That also means it’s time to pull out all of your favorite summer essentials! From beach bags and towels to sunscreen and shades, we’ve got you covered for the long weekend, and all of your summer weekends ahead.

Clockwise from top left

  • Sun Hat: Great for looking cute and blocking harmful rays from the sun. ($13, Forever 21)
  • Beach Towel: Go for a bold pattern—you’ll always keep track of your spot on the beach! ($27, Lacoste)
  • Sporty Digital Watch: Whether running in the sand or riding some waves, a comfortable watch will keep you in style and on schedule. ($55, Freestyle)
  • Tote Bag: You gotta carry your latest issue of FITNESS in something, right?($248, Henri Bendel)
  • Flip Flops: Let’s be real, these are the summer essential (along with SPF, of course). ($18, Havaianas)
  • Sunglasses: Keep your eyes protected with some simple shades or cool summertime sunnies! ($150, Oakley)
  • Sunscreen: A summer MUST! Make sure to apply all day, everyday. ($7, Coppertone)
  • Nail Polish: Pops of color on your fingers and toes adds some fun to your summer outfits! ($8, Essie)

Now tell us: What are your weekend getaway bag essentials?