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The New Dietary Guidelines: What You Should Know

Written on February 8, 2011 at 12:00 pm , by

Photo by Melissa Punch

Photo by Melissa Punch

Last week, the USDA and HHS released new dietary guidelines for Americans. So what changed, and what does it mean for your diet? Well, nothing too groundbreaking—to sum it up (and with apologies to Michael Pollan), Eat food. Not Too Much. Oh, and get up off the couch.

We know by now (I hope!) that eating real food, in normal portions, and exercising most days of the week will keep us feeling healthy and looking good in our skinny jeans (or our layers and snow boots, as many of you are probably wearing right now). But there are a few new developments added to the latest update that are especially important for women. We spoke with Elizabeth Ward, R.D., to help us break it down.

FITNESS: What are some of the most surprising changes in the new guidelines?

Elizabeth Ward: They’re really focusing on the obesity problem in both adults and children, emphasizing the need for healthier foods, smaller portions and exercise. They’re also paying attention to moms-to-be: maintaining a healthy weight to avoid increasing the chances your child will be overweight. Research has shown a connection between a mother’s BMI when she conceives and how much body fat the baby has at birth.

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Meet The Trainer: Equinox Pro Rachel Buschert Vaziralli

Written on February 3, 2011 at 11:03 am , by

If you tried February’s Express Workout (tear-out cards on page 65!) you know that this total-body, calorie scorching routine is KILLER! I met Rachel, the trainer who created the moves, while working out one day at my local Equinox and I was so impressed by her energy and passion for helping others get fit.  As I’ve been preparing for my upcoming wedding next week, I’ve done these five moves from Melt It Off! as a quick morning workout and I’ve also infused some of the individual moves in between my strength training routine. These moves really get your heart pumping and keep the calories burning long after your workout is done. I think this trainer’s going to be a big star in the future! For now, get to know her a little better! (And try those moves—you’ll thank me later!)

Did you ever have an “aha!” moment like some of our readers?

I moved to New York to study dance at NYU, but a year after college I was like many struggling artists and found myself waiting tables and bartending to make ends meet. I also packed on 40 pounds—I literally was putting in an order at the restaurant job that I hated, had my hand on my hip and felt my muffin top. I quit that night! The next day I began working out, dancing and studying for my personal training certification. Now, I have over 10 major fitness certifications, I’m 40 pounds lighter, and stronger than ever! Read more

Winter X Games Stars Torah Bright and Sarah Burke Sound Off

Written on January 26, 2011 at 11:27 am , by

During the frigid days of winter, we all need inspiration to get outside and get active. Look no further! Olympic gold medal winning snowboarder Torah Bright and X Games freestyle skiing champion Sarah Burke recently stopped by our office to share their success secrets and tips to improve your snow play. Both Burke and Bright will show off their skills at the Winter X Games from January 27-30 in Aspen, Colorado. For more information, check out xgames.com.

Torah Bright flies high on the snowboard superpipe. (Photo courtesy of Zach Ornitz/Shazamm/ESPN Images)

Torah Bright flies high on the snowboard superpipe. (Photo courtesy of Zach Ornitz/Shazamm/ESPN Images)

FITNESS: What keeps you motivated to stick with your training?
Sarah Burke: I’ve been doing it for so long, it’s almost something that I require for happiness! I’ve always wanted to push myself and am always switching up my routine to stay fresh.
Torah Bright: I’ve realized that if I focus more on off-snow training, it helps my on-snow performance. I love surfing and circuit training in the gym with weights and plyometrics. When it’s mid-winter and I’m out on the slopes a lot, I focus on getting plenty of recovery.
SB: I love sufing too, and downhill mountain biking!

FITNESS: Congratulations to both of you on your recent weddings! How do you stay fit as a newlywed?
SB: Both of our husbands do the same sport that we do, so that’s helpful so we can be active together. It’s nice to have someone who wants to go to the gym with you and who helps to keep you focused. I also make dinner when we’re together. Otherwise, I’d just grab a bowl of cereal because that’s just so easy.
TB: My husband definitely motivates me to go to the gym, so that’s great. Jake [Torah’s husband] gives me a big confidence boost. Any time he says I do something pretty well…I love it!

FITNESS: What are your favorite foods to stay fueled with while training?
TB: Nuts. Park City [Mountain Resort in Utah] has a Cobra Dogs shop now too, but I haven’t had one yet. That may not be the best training food.
SB: I never leave my house without a granola bar, whether it’s a CLIF bar or some other fiber bar. I also like to keep a cheese stick or almonds in my pocket so I don’t have to stop on the slopes.

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Meet Hollywood Trainer Jeanette Jenkins

Written on January 25, 2011 at 1:17 pm , by

Jeannette, kicking butt and taking names in our January 2011 issue.

Jeanette Jenkins, kicking butt in our January 2011 issue. (Photo by Karen Pearson)

When we last saw well-known celebrity trainer Jeanette Jenkins, she was sharing some kick-butt, calorie-blasting exercises on the Express Workouts page of our January issue. (Missed this? Check it out here!) Now, we catch up with Jeanette to learn a little more about the trainer behind those super-sculpting moves.

How did you become the fitness extraordinaire that you are?

I have always enjoyed playing sports.  I was raised by a single mother who kept me, my brother and my sister involved in team sports since the age of 5.  I excelled probably because I always played with my older brother so I had to work harder to keep up with the boys. When it was time for me to pick my college major, I knew the two things I loved were math and sports so it was a natural for me to run my own fitness business. I live for the joy I receive from helping people improve the quality of their lives!

What is your favorite part of your job?

I love helping people fall in love with healthy living—getting them to realize that their health is really in their own hands and empowering them to take control of their mind, body and spirit truly fulfills me. I love social media and the ability to send a tip and motivation on Twitter and know that those few words could help someone across the country and even across the world. [Follow Jeanette on Twitter @JeanetteJenkins]

What snack is your biggest temptation?

Pizza and just about any Italian food!! One of my best friends is Italian and she knows the direct route to my heart is a home made authentic Italian meal!

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Awesome New Workout Music: Q&A with DJ Girl Talk

Written on January 17, 2011 at 10:52 am , by

New Girl Talk Album, All Day

Girl Talk's new album cover for All Day (Photo Courtesy of Pitch Perfect)

While the words “girl talk” may bring back haunting memories of  junior high gossip, the Girl Talk on our radar these days is a 29-year-old musician named Gregg Gillis. He is the man behind Girl Talk’s the musical mashups–tunes that sample some of our favorite rock, hip-hop and pop songs and flow them all together in a fun, seamless way.

Girl Talk’s fifth album, All Day, was released on November 15 and can be downloaded (FREE!) on his label’s website here. Where else can you hear 372 song snippets over the course of 71 minutes from the likes of Jay-Z, Nine Inch Nails, Justin Timberlake, John Lennon and Lady Gaga?

To learn more about his eclectic taste and creative style, we spoke with Gillis about how he entered the music industry and how he stays fit for his energy-filled stage shows. Read more