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Meet the Fitterati
Best Healthy-Eating Blogs: Iowa Girl Eats
Kristin Porter, 29, West Des Moines, Iowa
For more than three years, Kristin has helped readers — and hubby, Ben — get creative in the kitchen. "I have a major sweet tooth but try to eat healthy 80 percent of the time," she says.
Morning Meal: "Overnight Oats are delicious and easy. In a bowl, stir together a half cup of old-fashioned oats; six ounces of raspberry fat-free Greek yogurt; half a banana, mashed; and a splash of skim or almond milk. Top with diced peaches, sliced almonds, and chia seeds; cover and refrigerate overnight."
Best Healthy-Eating Blog: Skinny Taste
Gina Homolka, 42, Oceanside, New York
Look no further for some delicious dinner — or breakfast or lunch — inspiration. Gina highlights seasonal foods in her low-fat recipes that are taking Pinterest by storm.
Kitchen MVPs: "My measuring spoons and cups are the most-used items in my kitchen. It's amazing to see how off I am when I guess what a third of a cup of cereal or one teaspoon of oil looks like."
Best Healthy-Living Blog: Blogilates
Cassey Ho, 25, San Francisco
This group-fitness instructor and designer of oGorgeous gym bags turned her passion into a career. "I love communicating with my followers on a daily basis," Cassey says.
Instant stress reliever: "I unplug from technology and step outside into nature. Taking a moment to appreciate life and be happy for all I've accomplished always puts me in a good mood."
Best Healthy-Living Blog: Healthy Tipping Point
Caitlin Boyle, 28, Charlotte, North Carolina
This spunky vegetarian updates her site three times a day with the latest on all things fun and fitness. Her philosophy? "Small efforts add up to make a big difference."
Go-green tip: "A plant-based diet doesn't have to be all or nothing. By doing meatless Mondays or ordering vegetarian when you eat at restaurants, you can boost your veggie intake without making drastic changes."
Best Inspirational Blog: Ali on the Run
Alison Feller, 27, New York City
Marathoner Ali covers more than fitness on her blog. Readers appreciate how open she is about her experiences dealing with Crohn's disease, an inflammatory bowel condition.
Gym bag staple: "I exercise in short shorts, but my legs get chilly on the commute home. Thank goodness for my American Apparel leg warmers [$18, store.americanapparel.com]. Eighties trend to the rescue!"
Best Inspirational Blog: The Wannabe Athlete
Callie Cowan, 29, Venice, Florida
When she started her blog, Callie couldn't run a mile. Now this mother of one (soon to be two!) is a regular racer and has completed half-marathons and a sprint triathlon. "It's amazing to see how far I've come," she says.
Busy mom must-do: "As a working mother, sometimes I feel guilty for squeezing in a workout. But then I remember that taking care of myself makes me a better mom."
Best Weight-Loss Blog: It Sux to Be Fat
Jennifer Swafford, 35, Marietta, Georgia
Now that she has shed more than 100 pounds, Jennifer uses her blog to maintain a healthy weight and stay accountable. Her mantra? "Don't give up what you want most for what you want in the moment."
Favorite app: "Spotify. Being able to find almost any song and add it to my workout playlist keeps me moving."
Best Weight-Loss Blog: Runs for Cookies
Katie Foster, 30, Newport, Michigan
After being overweight for 27 years, in 2009 Katie decided enough was enough. Now, 125 pounds lighter, she blogs daily about diving headfirst into healthy living.
Guilt-free indulgence: "I used to eat chocolate peanut butter ice cream that was 360 calories per half cup. These days I treat myself to a scoop of chocolate frozen yogurt topped with a tablespoon of peanut butter. It tastes just as good and is only 200 calories."
Best Personal Trainer Blog: Sweet Tooth Sweet Life
Courtney Horan, 28, Troy, New York
A former model, Courtney has overcome body-image issues. She discovered that exercise and getting stronger made her feel good about herself. "Now I realize that a healthy lifestyle doesn't have to be about deprivation," the certified trainer says.
Supersculptor: "My clients love to hate mountain climbers. I almost always find a way to incorporate them into our sessions, though, because we all know they work."
Best Personal Trainer Blog: Fitnessista
Gina Harney, 27, Tucson, Arizona
Gina, a military wife, a new mom, and a fitness instructor, constantly mixes things up in the gym. "I keep my body guessing so it won't kick into cruise control, and I do the same with my clients," she says.
Fat blaster: "Tabata intervals burn major calories. Sprint or jump rope as fast as you can for 20 seconds, then rest for 10. Repeat this eight times for a total of four minutes."
Best Running Blog: Black Girls Run
Toni Carey, 28, Norfolk, Virginia, and Ashley Hicks, 28, New York City
This dynamic duo seeks to inspire all women, especially those of color, to lace up their sneakers. Whether you're looking for an upcoming race, a group to run with, or gear tips, Ashley and Toni have the scoop.
Motivating music: "Our favorite songs to run to are Enur's 'Calabria 2007' and Beyoncé's 'Run the World (Girls).' They never fail to pump us up while we're training."
Best Running Blog: Skinny Runner
Sarah Moore, 29, Aliso Viejo, California
After her first half-marathon in 2008, Sarah was hooked. Followers love her race recaps — she has 35 marathons under her belt — and witty musings on how celebs stay in shape.
Must-have gear: "My Garmin 405 GPS watch [$220, garmin.com for stores] tells my distance, pace, and other crucial stats. And Bic Bands headbands [$10 to $13, bicbands.com] are cute, they don't move, and $1 from every sale goes to charity — triple win!"
Originally published in FITNESS magazine, July/August 2012.