Thursday, April 30, 2015
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Photos of Victoria's Secret Angels Sweating It Out Will Inspire You to Do the Same http://ift.tt/1HW7n1G
Yes, the Victoria's Secret Angels are genetically blessed, but they also work hard to maintain their health and killer physiques. From veteran favorites like Adriana Lima and Candice Swanepoel to the 10 newest Angels announced this week, all the models live healthy lifestyles, and they love to share their snaps! Check out all the times the Angels motivated us to stay fit, and then try the Victoria's Secret 10-minute fat-blasting circuit - it's the perfect no-equipment workout that'll whip you into shape.
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Just in time for this weekend's big opening of Avengers: Age of Ultron is a workout to make you feel like your best and strongest self. We love that it only requires a set of dumbbells and can be done anywhere. The results? Definitely worthy of superhero status! "This is a great functional workout that challenges your body from head to toe," says Tom Holland, Bowflex Fitness Advisor, MS, CSCS, and exercise physiologist. "It not only strengthens, but torches significant calories as well." All things we love to hear.
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When it comes to your exercise clothes, there are ways to splurge and ways to save. But even if you don't have unlimited funds to spend on an outfit you just use to sweat in, spend wisely and strategically by at least investing extra money in these three pieces.
Your sports bra: Besides the discomfort of having a bra that doesn't fit or support you, regularly exercising in the wrong sports bra can lead to breast damage (they're moving in a figure-eight pattern, after all!), so make sure your bra is getting the job done by finding a brand and style that gives you ample coverage and support, especially during high-impact exercises. Here's how to pick the right sports bra for you, whether you're small-chested or well-endowed.
Your shoes: Your feet are doing a lot of work while you exercise, especially if you run, so make sure you are getting the right pair to support your arches and ankles and giving your toes enough room to move. It's not just about investing in an expensive pair, however: you should buy your shoes based on your exercise - whether it's hiking, running, or a cardio class. For example, while you can run in any kind of shoe, buying a pair that's not made for running can lead to overuse injuries. To start, we've got a video on how to pick the right running shoe for you.
Your pants: It's not that less expensive pairs of exercise pants are bad - they're affordable and usually fit well, and you can collect a bunch to keep them in rotation. It's just that cheaper pants tend to lose shape, pill, and fade much faster than a better constructed, more expensive pair. Plus, quality exercise pants tend to have little details, like strategically placed venting or tiny pockets to hold your house keys, which can help your performance while you work out. Depending on your needs, you may want to splurge on a high-quality pair or two - or you may find a more affordable option that works well for you.
When it comes to saving on your gear, go for tops and tanks that don't break the bank. Just be sure to look for gear made from technical fabric - there's nothing worse than dealing with a sweat-drenched cotton tank after an intense workout.
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It's no surprise that having a fit partner-in-crime helps when committing to a new workout routine - but this new study explains it especially helps if that person is your literal partner. Research conducted at Tel Aviv University found that when one spouse improves his or her exercise routine, the other spouse is up to 70 percent more likely to be healthier.
Researchers examined records from a study that followed 3,261 couples, first at an initial medical visit and then at a follow-up visit six years later. At each visit, researchers asked the pairs about their physical activity levels to determine whether they met the physical activity guidelines for Americans: a minimum of 150 minutes per week of moderate-intensity aerobic exercise or at least 75 minutes of vigorous-intensity exercise per week. During the first visit, 45 percent of husbands and 33 percent of wives met the recommendations. When they revisited these couples year later, researchers found that when a wife met these recommendations at the first visit, her husband was 70 percent more likely to meet them at the next visit. Likewise, when a husband met recommended exercise levels, his wife was 40 percent more likely to meet the levels at the follow-up visit.
Tel Aviv University researcher Dr. Silvia Koton explained, "It was well known that spouses exhibit similar risky behaviors like smoking and drinking, but it wasn't clear how an individual's level of physical activity was influenced by changes in his or her spouse's level of physical activity . . . our study tells us that spouses can have a positive impact on one another in terms of staying fit and healthy over time."
A major takeaway from these findings for couples out there? To really make your new routine stick, you might consider training with each other. Here are some couple workout ideas to get your SO sweating by your side.
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This Winter I fell off the fitness train. Big time. I could tell you all the excuses that kept me from my workouts: my treadmill was broken (OK, so just the readout didn't work), it was way too cold to run or ski outside (holy crap, those -10 degree days were insane!), or that I was too busy baking to make it to my favorite hot yoga classes. Excuses, excuses! Really the reason was that with a full-time job, taking care of my family and all those household chores, it seemed impossible (and exhausting!) to squeeze workouts in.
It was time to get real. I mean an hour during the day doesn't just fall into your lap! If I wanted workouts to happen, I had to make them a priority, and for me, that meant penciling them into my schedule so they were as important as any of the other appointments I had on my calendar. Here's how I was able to trick myself into getting in four workouts a week.
I Finally Said Yes
A running buddy's relay partner for an upcoming marathon had to back out because of an injury, and she was desperate for a new partner. In my 15 years of running, the only race I've ever done was a 5K, so I said, "What the hell?" Knowing I have to be ready to run 13.1 miles by the end of my training sure makes fitting in those weekly workouts nonnegotiable. The other day I woke up to 36 degrees and flurries. Normally I would have said "F that!," but I knew I had to work on hills that day. Then a week later, I did a five-miler in the rain. I hated pretty much every step, being pelted with drop in my eyes, but afterward, I was damn proud of myself. And it felt good writing it down in bright orange on my calendar (another little motivating trick).
The Alarm Is Set
The time change was crucial in getting my workouts in, and I'm taking advantage of the early morning light. Three times a week, I set my alarm for 5:45 a.m., and without even thinking, I slip on my workout clothes that I've laid out the night before, eat half a banana with some water, and get outside for a run. I'm not going to lie - in the beginning, it felt like torture, pulling myself from my warm blanket cocoon, but within five or 10 minutes of my workout, I was totally into it and loving the quiet serenity of my still-sleeping neighborhood. Now when the alarm goes off, I can't ignore it. Even if I want to sleep in, I can't. My brain wakes up, my dog, Reuben, wags his tail excitedly, and I know I can't let myself or him down.
Sundays Are My Day
I've been teaching yoga classes on and off since 1999, but after two pregnancies and mommyhood in full force, it was a little too much to keep up with. I finally committed to Sundays at 9 a.m., and since I demonstrate the poses while I teach and I get to pick what we work on, I get in a great practice. My hubby watches the kids, and my friends come to the class, so it's something I look forward to every week. And because I'm the teacher, skipping out is not an option.
It's All About the Gear, Baby
Jewelry, expensive shoes and clothes, vacations - those aren't my thing. But splurging on new fitness gear? Now that really gets me excited. After every workout, I put a dollar in a jar ($5 for superlong workouts). Then every month or so I empty the jar and get a new top, a pair of capris, or a pair of kicks. And this Summer, I may add a mountain bike or GPS watch to my fitness gear family. On a day-to-day basis, the gear inspires me because I'm psyched to try it out. And with more expensive gear, I want to get my money's worth, so that motivates me too. Getting new gear is the best healthy reward! I work out, then I get new gear, which in turn gets me excited for more working out, and the cycle keeps going and going.
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Someone asks me a stupid question, and I give a smarter answer.
The post “What’s the Point of Having High Self-Esteem If You Die Early?” appeared first on A Black Girl's Guide To Weight Loss.
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- These 7 quick exercises tighten and tone - Fitness
- 56 healthy ways to eat more blueberries - Greatist
- Lighten up your egg salad sandwich with avocado - Cooking Light
- This is what top trainers really eat before a workout - Self
- 3 tips for the best smoothie ever - Real Simple
- Why it's OK to work out at a lower intensity - Shape
- Will doing workouts that are twice as long double your results? - Women's Health
- 12 superfoods that relieve stress - Health
- This is why green bell peppers are cheaper than red - POPSUGAR Food
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Our May Perfect Health Retreat begins on Saturday, and we’re thrilled to announce a new partner: AOBiome. In January I blogged (“UBiome and the May 2015 Perfect Health Retreat”) about our partnership with uBiome.com. UBiome has contributed two gut microbiome …
The post Nitric Oxide and AO+Mist Skin Probiotic at the Perfect Health Retreat appeared first on Perfect Health Diet.
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Wednesday, April 29, 2015
The thing holding us back from progress is a refusal to express empathy for those who disagree with us. They are the reason why Baltimore is fighting back.
The post Support for Baltimore, A Request for Empathy, and a Note on Censorship appeared first on A Black Girl's Guide To Weight Loss.
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Mom spends all year taking care of her family, so Mother's Day is the perfect time to give her something that keeps her health and happiness a top priority. These fun, delicious, useful gifts are sure to inspire a healthy habit or feed a fit obsession!
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It's hard out there for a serious pasta-lover who also strives to be healthy. As someone who grew up in a big Italian family - two parents and 18 aunts and uncles all from New York, to be exact - pasta has always been a part of family meals, and it's by far my favorite food. Now that I'm
trying to be an adult and I live on my own, I cook for myself and make healthy meals most of the time. While I eat plenty of fresh produce, lean protein, and unprocessed foods, I could never give up pasta entirely. The good news for me (and others who find happiness in carbs) is that the Italian staple does have some nutritional benefits, and there are plenty of ways to make it healthier.
And the health benefits of pasta are . . .
- Protein and fiber. A typical serving size of traditional pasta (two ounces uncooked, which comes to about one cup cooked) contains eight grams of protein and a little over 200 calories. It also contains 2.5 grams of fiber per serving, which is 10 percent of your RDA.
- Several essential nutrients. It's rich in folic acid, a B vitamin that's essential for women before and during pregnancy - it's necessary for proper development of the human body. Beyond that, the vitamin can prevent anemia, cervical cancer, and strokes.
- Low amounts of sodium and no cholesterol. While the sodium content and cholesterol level depend on what you put in it, pasta itself has only six milligrams of sodium and zero milligrams of cholesterol, making it a heart-healthy base to a meal.
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Surprising news: we may be overestimating how many calories we eat. The New York Times reports that, according to nutrition experts, healthy eaters may be consuming several hundred calories fewer than they think.
The problem lies in the way that calories are counted, which is based on a system from the 1800s that fails to take into account how many calories are lost when we digest foods that are harder to break down, especially those that contain a lot of protein or fiber, like nuts. If your healthy snacking habits include a handful of nuts (and there are many weight-loss reasons to eat them), here's the good news: one serving of 23 almonds is actually 120 calories instead of 160 calories as they are currently labeled - 40 fewer calories than previously thought. While these calorie savings shouldn't give you license to grab a second helping all the time, if you're trying to lose weight by eating right and counting calories, small savings like this can help you reach your goals.
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- Why food-safety specialists never eat these foods - Women's Health
- The 7 habits of healthy, stress-free people - Real Simple
- All women will love the results of this worldwide study on marathons - Self
- Eat this, not that at popular chain restaurants - Cooking Light
- Energy-boosting recipes that'll have you glowing - Shape
- How a stroke survivor who returned to running - HuffPost Healthy Living
- Toning yoga poses you can do at your desk - Health
- Lightened-up french onion dip to make at home - POPSUGAR Food
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We are pumped to share one of our favorite stories from Self here on POPSUGAR Fitness!
The snow has finally melted, but are you ready to embrace your favorite short shorts? If a newfound muffin top is making you wary of ditching your cozy Winter layers, rest assured, there are plenty of ways to whittle away those extra pounds without hitting the gym seven days a week.
"Muffin tops are a problem spot for everyone who overeats," says celebrity trainer Barry Jay, founder of Barry's Bootcamp, the bicoastal workout that's attracted everyone from Katie Holmes to Alanis Morissette to Kim Kardashian. "That part of our body catches excess easily, and it seems like it's the last to change."
To reverse the damage you did this Winter, try asking a doctor or nutritionist how many calories you should be eating for your age, height, and ideal body weight. "Cardio helps, but food is 85 percent of the results we see," says Jay.
Once your diet is back on track, add these three waist-whittling moves to your regular workout once a week to keep love handles at bay.
- Stand with your feet hip-distance apart, arms at your sides.
- As you reach down towards your toes with one arm, lift the other one up towards your waist, placing your hand on your hip.
- Alternate sides with one arm up, one arm down.
- Do 100 reps.
- Place your hands behind your head, elbows out wide and knees slightly bent. Isolate your core making sure your hips don't move.
- Twist to one side then the other alternating sides.
- Do 100 reps.
- Lay on the floor or a bench with your legs straight out, arms stretched above your head, toes pointed towards the ceiling.
- Raise your arms towards your toes as you raise your legs to a 45- to 90-degree angle, keeping your shoulders off the floor (above). You should bring your arms way up over your belly button so your body looks just like a jack knife.
- Then return back to the floor or bench with your legs and arms stretched out.
- Do 40 reps.
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"Exercising early in the morning jump-starts your metabolism, keeping it elevated for hours and energizes you for the day," says Jennifer Sherman, a Certified Indoor Cycling Instructor and Head Coach at Peloton Cycle in New York City. And while you may be tempted to sleep in, there are ways to make sure you get moving before you have time to come up with an excuse not to. Here, 10 of the best from some of the country's top trainers.
No, not the snooze button. "Get enough sleep the night before so you're well-rested," says Sherman. Better yet, "move your alarm clock out of arm's reach. This way you will actually have to get out of your warm bed to turn it off."
2. Pair Up
"Scheduling your sweat session with a friend is a great way to ensure you get your butt out of bed for that a.m. workout," says Adam Rosante, author of The 30-Second Body. "When you know someone is counting on you, you'll be far less likely to bail."
3. Get Competitive
Rosante suggests making a bet with one of your girlfriends. "Plan to work out five times per week for six weeks," he says. "For each planned day, you'll each put a pre-determined amount of money into a 'pot.' Something like five bucks is great. The first person to bail on a session loses and the winner gets the cash. Watching that pool grow as your body tones is pretty addictive. If you both last all six weeks, take the money and go out to celebrate with a great meal."
4. Style Yourself
Workout clothes are so cute-and even cuter when you take the time to plan out your morning look the night before. "Be a few steps ahead in order to get out the door seamlessly," says Sherman. "Take a few minutes the night before to lay out your workout gear, charge up the iPod and have your water bottle filled and ready."
5. Be Patient . . .
"Half the battle is simply starting," says Liz Arredondo, an instructor at Be Shri Yoga. "In my early days, a teacher said to me, 'Just give it 10 minutes.' Just make it through that first 10 minutes and you'll have forgotten all the doubt and sluggishness of the start of your morning sweat sessions. You blood will be moving and you'll feel better."
6. And Be Gentle
"Morning bodies are very tight and need time to wake up," says Arredondo. "We sleep in all kinds of terrible, misaligned positions and most of us wake up a bit stiff. Let your body wake up with some slow, deep breathing paired with gentle stretches before you start moving more actively."
7. Make Yourself Accountable
"Post on social media that tomorrow you are going to go to Barry's Bootcamp, SoulCycle, yoga, whatever it may be and invite your friends to meet you there," says LA-based trainer Astrid Swan. "If you don't show, and they do, well, social media will be all over it!" In other words, #dontbail.
8. Prep Your Breakfast
Swan suggests preparing a make-ahead breakfast the night before. She prefers overnight oats for energy: Mix almond milk, acai, maca, and banana in a blender, then add chia seeds and oats; put in a mason jar and place in fridge overnight. "You will wake up to a healthy, filling breakfast so you can take on the sweat and the rest of the day," she says.
9. Take the "Work" Out
"Make it fun," says Arredondo. "Put on a good playlist. Spotify is great if you don't love making your own, and find a class or a video that you enjoy."
10. Stay Honest
"Are you dreading the schlep to the gym? Are you tired from staying up too late?" asks Rosante. "Do you feel like you just don't know what kind of workout to do? Spend a few minutes thinking about why you have such a hard time committing to your a.m. workouts and you can easily figure out a solution that's perfect for you. You may realize it's time to ditch the gym membership and just start crushing simple workouts right in your living room."
Easy. Done. Now go get #UpNOut!
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Tuesday, April 28, 2015
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Boston Marathon bombing survivor Adrianne Haslet-Davis lost her leg below the knee, but today she gracefully danced across the marathon's finish line - literally. The professional ballroom dancer, who now wears a prosthetic leg, donned a sparkly dress and high heels to dance over the revered finish line as part of a TV commercial shoot, but the event was full of meaning for Adrianne. She says that although her recovery has been challenging, she continued to work toward her goal of dancing again because it "helped her feel whole," CBS Boston reports.
As Adrianne says on her website, "I refuse to be called a victim. I am not defined by what happened in my life. I am a survivor, defined by how I live my life." Watch the uplifting video about Adrianne's dance across the finish line, and read more incredibly inspiring Boston Marathon survivor stories.Source: Twitter user AdrianneHaslet
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Counting calories is important; you need to take stock of just how many you should be eating every day in order to make smarter choices about your meals. But dietitians, nutritionists, and fitness experts recommend looking beyond the sheer quantity of calories - especially when it comes to quality nutrition that supports sustainable weight-loss goals. Enter macro-based eating, the technique celebrity trainer Holly Perkins swears by when it comes to giving your diet a healthy weight-loss-powered makeover.
"Macro" refers to the three macronutrients carbohydrates, protein, and fat our bodies require for energy and proper function. A macro-based diet looks at the percentage combination of the carbs, protein, and fat in your diet instead of calorie counts alone. If you're looking to lose weight and haven't had success with calorie counts alone, Holly recommends following the 40-30-30 formula: make 40 percent of your daily diet carbohydrates, 30 percent protein, and 30 percent fat. According to the USDA, the AMDR (acceptable macronutrient distribution range) for carbohydrates is 45- to 65-percent, 10- to 35-percent protein, and 20- to 35-percent fat. While the carbohydrate percentage she suggests is five percent lower than the USDA range, Holly recommends this structure for women who are looking to lose weight and keep it off, since "this is the general ideal macro structure to keep blood sugar balanced." When your blood sugar is balanced, you don't deal with mood swings or crazy cravings that can throw you off course. She refers to 40-30-30 as the place "where you'll feel well and energized, think well, and be able to workout."
For women who want to take fat off fast, a 30-40-30 formula (30 percent carbohydrates, 40 percentage protein, and 30 percent fat) can work, but it might not last. Studies show that low-carb dieters lose more weight, but according to Holly, it's not sustainable for the long run. Registered dietitian Julie Upton agrees: "it's impactful . . . [but] most people find very restricted low-carb diets hard to follow and they fall off the wagon." Generally speaking, Holly suggests the 40-30-30 combination to women who are committed to making lifestyle changes to lose weight and keep it off, since this macronutrient combination "allows your body to burn fat more easily and freely without the fear of starvation. You'll feel energized, brain-strong, and minimize cravings and hunger . . . it has just enough carbs to keep your brain happy, but not too many where you go into fat-storage mode." If you're ready to give 40-30-30 a go, doing the math is simple! Let's break it down for a woman who eats 1,500 calories per day:
1,500 calories x 40% carbohydrates = 600 calories of carbohydrates
600 calories / 4 calories per gram of carbs = 150 grams of carbohydrates
1,500 calories x 30% protein = 450 calories of protein
450 calories / 4 calories per gram of protein = 111.2 grams of protein
1,500 calories x 30% fat = 450 calories of fat
450 calories / 9 calories per gram of fat = 50 grams of fat
This means a woman who eats 1,500 calories a day would eat 600 calories (or 150 grams) of carbohydrates, 450 calories (or 112.5 grams) of protein, and 450 calories (or 50 grams) of fat per day.
If you're concerned about doing all this math for every meal, I have great news. Livestrong's MyPlate app has all ready done it for you. Simply plug in the foods you're eating every day to determine how close or far you are from hitting your macronutrient percentages. You can check it out in the caloric-breakdown chart below.Source: Live Strong
It's important to note Holly is all about eating clean, since the higher-quality nutrition you put into your body, the better results you're going to see and feel. Always opt for whole, unprocessed, and natural foods, high-quality organic or wild meats, and healthy fats. According to Holly, "food is fuel." You can either fuel your body up like it's a beaten-down tractor with cheap gas or like it's a Maserati requiring the best fuel out there. What you choose is up to you.
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With the farmers market in full bloom, I'm often guilty of going overboard when it comes to buying produce. After years of (sadly) throwing out moldy strawberries and brown bananas, I've learned a simple trick that saves money, reduces waste, and ensures that there are always fruits and veggies in my house. Instead of throwing out rotting fruit, I now freeze my produce, which preserves its nutritional content and also halts the ripening process. Frozen produce can last in the freezer for up to a year, and the actual freezing process is remarkably simple to do.
If there's an abundant amount of produce in the house, estimate how much you'll need to last the week and then freeze the rest. Keep in mind that produce is best frozen when it's perfectly ripe.
When it comes to fruit, wash, peel, and dice before freezing. Put the fruit slices onto a cookie sheet and freeze overnight, then transfer the frozen fruit pieces into moisture-proof containers. By first freezing fruit on a cookie sheet, you avoid ending up with a massive block of frozen fruit later. Although I freeze fresh fruit as is, you can use sugar to maintain a fruit's flavor, color, and texture if you won't be using it soon after freezing. Lemon juice can also be used to preserve the color of fruits that would normally brown when exposed to air, like apples or pears. There's a ton of ways to use frozen fruit, but I love adding it to smoothies, oatmeal, and in fresh sauces, marinades, or salad dressings.
Before freezing vegetables, it's highly recommended that you blanch them first. Blanching halts the action of vegetable enzymes, which cause veggies to lose their color, flavor, and texture. Keep in mind that blanching time varies depending on the vegetable, and you want to make sure that veggies are cooled before you freeze them. Vegetables that you freeze at home can be cooked in the exact same way you would use frozen vegetables from the grocery store.
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Former "Fattest Man in the World" Undergoes Skin-Removal Surgery After Losing 600 Pounds http://ift.tt/1bbyxVs
Paul Mason made headlines in 2010 after the TLC special World's Fattest Man, but is now back in the news for continuing his weight-loss journey after already losing over 600 pounds. The 54-year-old man from England underwent gastric bypass surgery at 980 pounds in 2010, but even at his postsurgery weight, Paul felt physically limited by his excess skin. That's why a skin-removal surgery was so important to him, and after years of hoping, that surgery finally happened today.*
*Warning: this post contains a graphic image of Paul's skin during surgery.Source: Facebook user Paul Jonathan Mason
The reason Paul's surgery has been widely circulated on the Internet today? New York Times reporter Sarah Lyall was assigned to witness and live-tweet the surgery from the operating room at Lenox Hill Hospital in New York. You can follow the process and view more photos there, but one of Sarah's photos, shown below, is of doctors holding some of Paul's excess skin during the operation.
"24 pounds of loose skin," Sarah wrote.
Paul's long-awaited surgery will help him continue to turn his life around and be as active as possible as he works toward his goal weight of 200 pounds. "I'll be glad to take my dog for a walk down the road. I want to start looking for a job, and get on with life," Paul told BBC News. The life-changing surgery would not have been possible without Rebecca Mountain, a woman who met Paul online in 2012 - and is now his fiancée. Paul moved from his home in England to be with Rebecca in Orange, MA, and Rebecca raised nearly $5,000 on a fundraising page dedicated to helping "Paul complete his extraordinary journey."
Today, Paul's fiancée has been updating the public about Paul's surgery through his Facebook page. "The surgery was a success!" she happily shared today.
Paul wants to use his experiences to help spread awareness about living a healthy life, no matter when you start. As stated on his website, "Paul is reaching out to those who are struggling with obesity and emotional addiction to food . . . with a desire to change, anyone can turn their life around."
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Saying "no" has never been my forte. I'm a social creature and a "yes" person. Long before FOMO permeated the pop culture landscape, I hated passing up any enticing invitation for a night out - the phrase "I'll sleep when I'm dead" comes to mind when I think about my first years in San Francisco.
Eventually, I woke up and found myself with a complete lack of energy, a totally shot immune system, and a body I barely recognized. The irony of it all was I was coming up on my one-year anniversary of writing for POPSUGAR Fitness. I was sitting at my desk writing all day and going out (almost) every night from work. I was left with exactly zero time to dedicate to my physical fitness or general wellness. Somewhere in my mind I had worked out this deal: since I was writing about health all day long, I was obviously being healthy. Then, I saw one Instagram proving that this was not the case. Seeing this photographic proof was the push I needed to recommit to a consistent routine, but seeing results was much tougher than I had anticipated. And it wasn't because I wasn't making time to work out; it's because I had to start saying "no" to people I love.
No, I can't eat nachos tonight. No, I can't go to your show at 11 p.m. on Wednesday; I have SoulCycle at 7 a.m. (and then, I work all day). No, I can't stop by the bar, because I don't want to be coaxed into drinking a bunch of Manhattans and wake up hungover and hating life. No, I need to leave early, so I can prep meals for the week and clean my house. No, I am not interested in your cupcake. Well . . . I am interested in your cupcake, but no, no thank you.
If you're new to this whole healthy-living gig, heed my advice, and consider this a warning. There are people you love and love spending time with who will do everything in their power to get in your way. They'll tell you they miss seeing you, ask you to skip a Sunday morning class so you can meet them for brunch, and say everyone keeps asking where you've been hiding. Even after explaining that "no" has become more rampant in my vocabulary because of my health, I still felt like I was letting friends down. Guilt plagued me for some time, but once I started reaping the benefits of all my hard work, the response became easier and more natural. And honestly? It feels really good to put my foot down, take the reins, and do what's best for me.
Don't get me wrong: making time for fun is absolutely essential to live a balanced life, and trust me, I have plenty of fun. But I realized that if I was serious about changing my body and changing my life, it was only going to work if I set healthy boundaries that were on my terms. Sure, there are still weeks I spread myself too thin and nights I stay out way too late, but the vast majority of my time is dedicated to living a healthier, more balanced life - and I've got the results to prove it.
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- Work your way to a flat stomach with these effective ab workouts - Shape
- Protein-packed dinner recipes starring peanut butter - Fitness
- 7 green superfoods you should be eating - Real Simple
- Vegan, gluten-free lemon cookies? It's true - POPSUGAR Food
- Satisfy your cravings with these lightened-up Mexican recipes - Self
- 19 songs perfect for a relaxing yoga session - Women's Health
- Eat these foods to make sure you're getting enough magnesium - Health
- What to do when you've hit a weight-loss plateau - Cooking Light
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Somehow doing yoga on the soft, warm sand, gazing up at sapphire blue skies and breathing in the fresh ocean air with the sunshine kissing your skin, makes you feel stronger, more serene, and more at one with yourself and the world. The next time you find yourself on the beach, try one of these inspiring yoga poses.
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Whether the temperatures are rising or it's still coat weather where you are, you've undoubtedly developed Summer fever. Thinking about those Summer months means thinking about Summer meals, and on a hot day, there are few things better than a cold, refreshing smoothie to start off your morning or enjoy after a sweaty workout. We've got 14 healthy and delicious fruit smoothies that you'll want to blend up all season long.
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Monday, April 27, 2015
Flat-belly season is around the corner, so if you're shaping up for the season, you're in luck: some of Summer's freshest and tastiest produce will help you debloat and slim down to help you feel your best all Summer long. Take a look at how your favorite fresh produce will help you stay on track and meet even the most impressive bikini goals.
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Running and crazy-tight hamstrings seem to go together like peanut butter and jelly, but it doesn't have to be that way! Hop on your mat after a run and do this short yoga sequence. It not only targets the backs of the legs, but also increases flexibility in the lower back and hips - opening those areas is essential to decreasing tightness in the hamstrings.
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It's finally time to strip off those Winter layers, but hot-weather running has its own set of problems. After all, beating the heat when it's already baking outside can be hard, especially since you'll feel 20 degrees warmer than the actual temperature when you run! Investing in sweat-wicking and cooling performance gear is key to staying safe and feeling great during your Summer runs. These 10 cute picks do it right.
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It's T-minus seven days to your swimsuit-clad vacation, and you haven't accomplished any of the healthy goals you had in mind when you booked. We've all been there. Slow and steady wins the race when it comes to sustainable weight loss, but that doesn't mean you should give up completely! You can absolutely feel a difference in your energy and how your clothes fit in just seven days. Follow these healthy rules when you're one week out from the fun, and get ready to rock your favorite crop tops, shorts, and swimsuits with a little extra confidence.
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Warmer weather means strawberry season! Take advantage of this low-cal berry that's also high in potassium and antioxidants. And no, these berries aren't just for snacking or topping on some french toast or cheesecake. Here are 17 healthy ways to enjoy these refreshing and juicy berries at lunchtime.
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No More GMOs: Chipotle Announced It Will Stop Serving All Genetically Altered Food http://ift.tt/1Ign0Bt
Starting today, Chipotle will stop using all genetically modified ingredients in its food. GMOs, or genetically modified organisms, have been at the forefront of health-food discussions for a while, and this news makes Chipotle the first major restaurant chain to eliminate genetically modified food entirely from its menu.
In a statement, Steve Ells, founder and co-CEO of Chipotle, said, "We are changing the way people think about and eat fast food, and that means cooking with the very best ingredients - ingredients that are free of additives - but still serving food that is affordable, convenient, and most importantly delicious. That's really unusual in fast food, but that's the quest we are on, and we continue to make progress."
The totally-GMO-free menu is the result of over two years of work for the company, and this step is just another that Chipotle has taken to prove its environmentally and health-conscious model.
Most recently, you might have noticed a lack of carnitas at your go-to Chipotle location. That's because the restaurant removed pork from about 600 of its 1,831 locations after a routine inspection found that a major pork supplier was not complying with Chipotle's standards for responsibly raised meat.
Chipotle addressed the decision on its website, stating, "Chipotle is on a never-ending journey to source the highest quality ingredients we can find. Over the years, as we have learned more about GMOs, we've decided that using them in our food doesn't align with that vision. Chipotle was the first national restaurant company to disclose the GMO ingredients in our food, and now we are the first to cook only with non-GMO ingredients."
Although the FDA does not require GMO labeling in the US, you've likely noticed an increase in the labels in grocery stores as the conversation around the agricultural technology continues (although, as Jimmy Kimmel hilariously proved, many anti-GMO people at a farmers market couldn't say what the acronym stood for).
According to the USDA National Agricultural Statistics Service, a staggering percentage of corn and soybeans grown in the US is genetically modified - 94 and 93 percent, respectively. This makes it more difficult for large chain restaurants to find not only GMO-free corn but also meat from animals not given GMO feed. Chipotle used soy oil to fry its chips and tortillas, and now cooks will use sunflower oil to fry them, and a non-GMO rice bran oil will be used in the rice and fajita vegetables (bell peppers and onions). As for the corn, Chipotle was already using GMO-free corn in its salsa, and now the corn tortillas will be made from GMO-free corn flour. According to The New York Times, the restaurant's "primary tortilla supplier was already producing non-GMO corn flour in small amounts, and it agreed to increase its production."
"There is a lot of debate about genetically modified foods," Ells said. "Though many countries have already restricted or banned the use of GMO crops, it's clear that a lot of research is still needed before we can truly understand all of the implications of widespread GMO cultivation and consumption. While that debate continues, we decided to move to non-GMO ingredients."
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- 2 burpee variations that will sculpt your abs - Self
- This is what happens when you crack your knuckles - Real Simple
- Creative avocado recipes - Cooking Light
- 100 things you can do instead of mindlessly noshing - Women's Health
- Hilarious GIFs only clean eaters would understand - Fitness
- 12 big-ticket kitchen items worth the expense - POPSUGAR Food
- Light Spring salad: confetti slaw with poppyseed dressing - Health
- How to avoid the 3 most common Spring injuries - Shape
- Intense 10-minute total-body circuit - Greatist
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Get the awesome abs, sexy arms, and flab-free physique you've been working on with plateau-busting fitness tips from Shape that'll get you into a bikini - stat.
You're already working hard so you can enjoy your favorite little indulgences (hello, happy hour!). But if you want to step it up for bikini season, tweaking your routine without going overboard can be mind-boggling (how many more miles could you possibly log?!). That's why we asked top fitness pros for tried-and-true tricks to amp up your workout. Read on to drop a few pounds, tone up trouble areas, and ultimately, feel like a rock star in your swimsuit.
Sculpt Tank-Top-Ready Arms
"I'm a big believer in 'old-fashioned' strength training," says Debora Warner, founder and program director of the Mile High Run Club, a NYC-based studio that teaches treadmill classes and endurance-based strength training for runners. If you're a runner, add strength training using high weight and low reps two to three times a week to your cardio routine to build lean muscle mass that will help you burn more calories, she explains. "It's sexy to have muscles and a firmed, toned body at the beach," she says, and we couldn't agree more - which is why you'll find us in the weight room through Memorial Day weekend. (Try our Heavy Weight Workout to get started!)
Get Your Abs in Gear
Let's face it: when it comes to Summer, our biggest body concern is whether our abs are bikini-ready. But skip the crunches, suggest Jillian Lorenz and Ariana Chernin, cofounders of The Barre Code. Instead, try their go-to move for OMG-worthy abs: hold a 30-second plank each morning when you wake up and each night before you go to bed, adding 15- or 30-second increments each week. By the end of the month, you'll notice a stronger, tighter core. "As you hold an active position, like a plank, begin to visualize your body getting lighter, tighter, and stronger with each second that passes, developing a visual mind-body connection throughout the hold," the cofounders suggest. The move becomes twofold - in addition to more definition, you'll have a more Zen approach to how you look in that bikini when you finally hit the beach.
Treat Yourself - on the Inside
Forget spray tans and new bikinis - now is the time to treat yourself from the inside out, rather than the outside in. Bouncing from yoga to boot camp or barre is great, because you're working different muscle groups, but all that exercise can also lead to lactic acid buildup. "People think they're taking care of their bodies physically, but they forget about the internal things," says Natalie Uhling, Radius Fitness master trainer. "A sports or deep-tissue massage can help break down muscle tissue. You can't perform at your best and really get the most out of workouts if you're sore from lactic acid builtup." If you can't swing regular sports massages, foam rolling can also help soothe sore muscles. (Try these 4 Foam Roller Exercises to Burn Fat and Reduce Cellulite.)
Add Some Spring to Your Step
Your energy levels naturally increase in the springtime with the increase in daylight, so channel that extra vigor into a more intense, high-energy workout, suggests Grace Menendez, a trainer at Crunch Gym in NYC. Plyometrics, or jump training, will give you more bang for your buck by adding an aerobic element to your strength training, thereby increasing your speed and power, she says. The goal is to exert maximum force in short intervals of time, so combine a few plyometric drills (like box jumps or kettlebell swings) with weight lifting or bodyweight exercises for double the benefits. (Get started now with this Plyometric Power Plan.)
Break Out of Your Workout Routine
Sticking with just one workout won't get you the body you want by Summer. Cross-training is important to help build lean muscle and increase endurance for cardio activities, says Alex Isaly, Radius Fitness master trainer. That doesn't mean logging extra hours at the gym, though. Work three or four quick workouts that combine core work, agility training, stretching, and moves using five- to eight-pound dumbbells into your existing weekly routine to tone up all over, shrinking spots you'll want to show off in summery styles like backless dresses and short shorts. (Exhale's Core Fusion Extreme Workout blends it all together.)
Don't Just Show Up
Yes, showing up to your workout is half the battle, but tuning in to your body is just as important, says Jackie Dragone, director of FLEX Barre at FLEX Studios. If your mind is elsewhere (like dreaming of white sandy beaches), you're probably not putting 100 percent into each exercise. Relish how sick you'll look this Summer after class is done, but keep your brain on short-term goals during your workout. "Focusing on your breathing and connecting your breath to your movement is the easiest way to make sure you are getting the most out of class," says Dragone. This mental engagement adds another element to your workout - and ensures you're not taking a break when you don't really need it!
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If you've recently signed up for a 5K, congratulations - committing to a run is often the hardest part. But even with entry secured, you might be unsure of how to prep properly before the big day. Here are a few easy steps to help get you to the starting line with a stride in your step.
Pick a purpose: Decide what your goal is and keep that in mind during training (and the race itself). If it's to jump-start a fitness routine or lose weight, you may not be as concerned with your finish time. But if you want to beat a personal best or qualify for another race after your 5K, make sure your training allows for this.
Create a training schedule: Sticking with a schedule like this six-week running guide will help you stay on track without overwhelming you physically. Make sure to give yourself plenty of time to train so you can increase both mileage and time while still allowing the body time to rest.
Keep motivated: Whether you decide to run a 5K with a group or find a running buddy to train with, a friend can help keep you accountable. Sharing your goals and scheduling running workouts together will help keep momentum up and ensure that you stay consistent - especially during those times when you feel low.
Don't do too much too fast: Keep the old saying "slow and steady wins the race" in mind while training. It's important to not push yourself too hard, too fast - you want to avoid injury so that you can actually get to the race. A good rule of thumb is to increase your mileage by no more than 10 percent each week. Jot down your plan and increase gradually. Motivation is key, but be careful it doesn't drive you to bite off more than you can chew.
Train in the right gear: Feeling comfortable during the race, and in training, is crucial to your success. Never race in gear - especially shoes - that you haven't tested before. Run in clothing that is broken in that you know won't ride up or cause blisters. If you need a new pair of shoes and have time to break them in before race day, go to a running specialty store to get a gait analysis and test the shoes out on a real track. Remember the saying "cotton is rotten" when dressing to train. It makes clothes heavy, sweaty, and wet.
Start strong, finish strong: Positive visualization will help you before the race and during. While you train, picture yourself on the track and tune out any environmental factors. The race will be full of people running right alongside you, so the more you practice this technique, the better your performance will be on the big day. Keep your eyes on the prize as you complete your 5K and keep all of the reasons you decided to do it circling in your head. This will help you feel even more accomplished as you cross the finish line.
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Sunday, April 26, 2015
Whether they're working out first thing in the morning or after work, many people may feel a little drowsy and sluggish. Rather than heading to the gym with only one eye open, prepare by drinking one of these energy-boosting beverages to help you feel more focused, energized, and ready to push your body to do more.Source: Flickr user masatoshi_
Coffee or Green Tea
Caffeine increases your endurance because it changes how your body uses fat. Caffeine helps your body convert fat into readily accessible energy, so you can work out for longer. As an added bonus, studies have also shown that caffeine consumption helps reduce post-workout DOMS (delayed onset muscle soreness).
Rich in natural sugars, antioxidants, and phytonutrients, a homemade green juice is a glass full of easily absorbable nutrients, especially iron, which can combat your sleepy slump. And because green juice recipes are high in carbs but low in fiber, it helps give the body energy while also being easy to digest. Perfect if you need something on the way to the gym.
Apple Cider Vinegar
If you are a fan of kombucha, then you'll love the tart flavor of apple cider vinegar, which is rich in minerals, vitamins, and beneficial acids. For an energy booster sans caffeine, mix a tablespoon or two of apple cider vinegar in a cup of water or try Nikki Reed's favorite pre-workout drink that combines apple cider vinegar with cranberry juice and lemon. Look for raw and unfiltered varieties to get the most nutrients possible. A small study also links apple cider vinegar to improved weight loss.
Pre-Workout Sports Beverages
Gatorade, Vega Sport, and BioSteel High Performance offer sports drinks that are developed specifically for before workouts. Each drink is formulated with ingredients to help stimulate and energize the body. We recommend these drinks for more intense or longer workouts.
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Saturday, April 25, 2015
Bad weather can't get in the way of your treadmill runs! That's what's so great about running inside. But if you've hit a plateau with your workouts, or you're not losing as much weight as you thought you should, follow these calorie-burning tips the next time you hop on the moving belt.
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Friday, April 24, 2015
King of abs, fashion icon, host of Make Me a Supermodel . . . whatever you want to call him, there's no denying that Tyson Beckford is a serious hottie with a body. His newest exciting adventure will be cohosting the Chippendales show in Las Vegas (you know, the male striptease dance show). We sat down with Tyson to talk about how he's training for the shirtless gig - although his training never really stops. "For me, fitness is a way of life," he said. Read on to see some of the model and actor's favorite health and fitness routines, and try not to stare at his abs too long.
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Staying strong and fit takes dedication every single day, so keep these 100 tips in mind to keep you confidently chugging along on that healthy path.
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Quoting Oz: This is a flawed area with lots of fraud, both in the research and in products. And we no longer talk about them.
The post Dr. Oz Admits Weight Loss Supplements Are “Flawed” With “Lots of Fraud” appeared first on A Black Girl's Guide To Weight Loss.
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When Cobie Smulders was 25, she was diagnosed with ovarian cancer . . . but until now, the world never knew. The actress had been filming How I Met Your Mother season three when doctors discovered her frightening condition, and she spent the next two years secretly fighting a battle for her health. Now, she is sharing her story with Women's Health magazine in hopes that she can help spread awareness about the disease.
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- Grab a dumbbell and work your core in just 5 minutes - Women's Health
- 10 antioxidant-packed foods you need in your life - YourTango
- The 4 best yoga poses for runners - Women's Running
- 10 workout songs that'll get you pumped for Summer - Shape
- 5 healthy reasons to eat more garlic - Real Simple
- The 3 workouts you need if you're training for a race - Self
- 38 quick and healthy vegetarian recipes - Cooking Light
- Your 5-step guide to making healthy 15-minute stir-fry - Health
- The trick to making asparagus taste its best - POPSUGAR Food
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Consumers demanded it, and Pepsi is finally listening. The company announced today that it will stop using the artificial sweetener aspartame in all its Diet Pepsi products.
The newly formulated Diet Pepsi products (including Diet Pepsi Wild Cherry, Diet Pepsi, and Caffeine Free Diet Pepsi) will hit shelves in August and will be specifically marketed as "aspartame-free." Instead of the maligned sweetener, the new diet sodas will contain a mix of the artificial sweeteners sucralose and acesulfame potassium, also called ace-k.
Many consumers have demanded that companies stop using aspartame (also known as Equal, NutraSweet, or AminoSweet) in their products because of potential side effects like cancer or dizziness and other neurological problems, and Pepsi is the first beverage company to ditch the sweetener from its diet sodas. But while sucralose is generally regarded as a safer sweetener, the consumer advocacy group Center For Science in the Public Interest notes that ace-k is poorly tested and may also pose a cancer risk, and therefore consumers should avoid this sweetener as well. The bottom line? Between possible increased risk of diseases as well as weight gain and accelerated aging, there's just no good reason to keep up a diet soda habit.
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Hula-Hooping seems like child's play, but it's actually a great way to burn some calories while slimming your waist, especially when you use a weighted hoop. But using a 100-pound tractor tire? I wonder how many calories that burns?!
Paul Blair, appropriately called Dizzy Hips, is an extreme Hula-Hooping stuntman who made it to the Guinness Book of World Records with this astounding physical feat. Not that you'd want to, but folks, don't try this at home.
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