Author Archives: Summer Huggins

About Summer Huggins

Summer Huggins is an amateur photographer, dog-lover, cupcake-eater and shoe-shopper in Austin, Texas. She loves to travel, cook and take in a good movie, and she volunteers with a local pet-rescue organization as a photographer and dog-walker.


The Prize Inside: Health Magazine Is Chock-Full of Good Advice


The July/August 2010 issue of Health magazine is a must-read. With each page, I felt like I was winning a little prize, kind of like the fun ones we found in the bottom of a box of cereal when we were kids.

Here are a few of my favorite features in this issue:

  • I’ve always loved great photography in magazines, and the picture on the first page of “The CarbLovers Diet” sure made me smile. Plus, the “weight-loss news of the decade” makes this pasta- and bread-lovin’ girl very happy.

  • Did you splurge on a candy bar after lunch today? Maybe an extra piece of pizza at dinner? Don’t feel bad! “20 Ways to Torch 200 Calories” gives you–you guessed it–a score of ways to burn those extra calories. Anyone up for a game of Scrabble?
  • ‘Tis the season for family vacations and sightseeing with out-of-town guests. If you’re dining on the run, let “Road Trip!” be your guide. Whether you’re enjoying a meal from a gas station, a fast food restaurant or a place you stumbled upon in the middle of nowhere, this article will help you make the best and most nutritious choices possible.

Recipe Review: Men’s Health Magazine’s Grilled Chicken and Pineapple Sandwich

menshealth1.jpgYour grill probably hasn’t yet had the chance to cool down since the last time you used it. Don’t let it. You’ll want it to be sizzling hot and ready for the Grilled Chicken and Pineapple Sandwich featured in the July/August 2010 issue of Men’s Health magazine.

A nice balance of sweet and spicy, hot and cool, this gourmet-looking sandwich is about as easy as a recipe can be. It’s also one that would be easily adapted for a backyard picnic for two or a huge bash with all your friends.

I give it two thumbs up and encourage you to try it this weekend. And after you’ve grilled the sliced pineapple for the recipe, be sure to try your other favorite local seasonal fruits on the grill. Grilled peaches, apples, watermelon and more are healthy alternatives to fried sides at your next grilling party.



Take in the Oxygen: A Preview of the August 2010 Issue

oxygen_august2010.jpgQuick, someone hand me a medicine ball! According to the August 2010 issue of Oxygen magazine, there is one move with a medicine ball that targets at least 10 muscles. Your glutes, your quads, your abs and more. That’s what I call an efficient workout!

And the moves don’t stop there. This issue is packed with healthy ideas. Here are a few highlights:

  • Have you ever eaten a beige piece of meat alongside a beige starch and a beige piece of bread on a beige plate? It’s not a pretty picture. “Color Yourself Fit” will make you hungry to add some color to your diet. Never stare at a boring plate of food again, and be healthier for it!

  • You’ll be the envy of everyone else in the gym if you “Get Arms Like These.” Six pages of arm-focused moves promise to have you tank-top ready–and proud if it–in just four weeks.
  • And if you don’t have time to go to the gym, you need nothing more than a mat at home to do the moves featured in “Great Glutes for You.” These five moves don’t even include squats or lunges, so that’s a bonus.

That’s just the beginning. The August issue also includes a great ab workout, a full back routine and eight reasons to add more onions to your diet.

Recipe Review: Prevention Magazine’s Four-Step Stir-Fry

FourStepStirFryThe July 2010 issue of Prevention magazine has a four-step technique for a stir-fry that jumped out from the page to me. Four steps! How could I not try that?

To make it even easier, instead of specific required ingredients, they offered lists of ingredients that could be mixed and matched to generate what could possibly be hundreds of combinations. (“Hundreds” is a ballpark figure; to be honest, I didn’t do the math.)

So first, I picked my protein: flank steak. For ease, check your local grocery store; they may have it cut and ready to go specifically for use in a stir-fry. I was very pleased to find it that way in my store.

Second, I picked out a few colorful vegetables. Asparagus, red bell pepper and white onion were the chosen ones. I cut the veggies and started to cook.

A special sauce and some freshly toasted sesame seeds later, my first-ever stir-fry was complete!

I’m already scouring the pages of this issue of Prevention magazine again, trying to decide what combination of ingredients to use for my next attempt. If you find a delicious combination, I hope you’ll let me know!

Note to Self: Found a Nutrition, Health and Beauty Magazine Just for Me

selfmag.jpgI’ve always enjoyed Self magazine. It feels like “my” magazine. I’m not a parent, so parenting magazines aren’t for me. I’m not yet over 40, so magazines for “mature” women don’t fit the bill quite yet. But I’m well over 17, so the fun magazines written and designed for younger women don’t make much sense for me either. Self does.

From articles on beauty to nutrition, fitness to fashion, health to happiness, Self covers just about everything that a woman like me–a woman who doesn’t fit into all those other categories–is interested in. And if you’re into celebrity news/gossip at all, the July 2010 issue even featured an enjoyable article on cover girl Anna Paquin. (Can you believe it’s been 16 years since her Oscar win for “The Piano”?)

A sampling of what else Self has to offer, from the July issue:

  • The July fitness “Body Bonus” features Olympic gold medal beach volleyballer Misty May-Treanor
    in tear-out cards demonstrating 12 moves sure to “torch” calories. I packed them into my carry-on bag to try in my hotel during my next trip.

  • “And The Winners Are…” puts 66 convenience foods to the test. We all have to eat on the run sometimes, and this guide puts the best snacks, meals, drinks and condiments right at your fingertips for your next speedy trip to the grocery store.
  • “Feeling Lazy? Perfect!” contains eight surprising ways to boost your mood, memory and more. Have a big meeting or test in the morning? Make sure you yawn lots beforehand. This article will tell you why.
  • Have you been contemplating following your passion? “The New Ambition” follows several women who have left their 9-to-5 jobs to do just that. Their stories will inspire you.

Self magazine is consistently one that I devour the moment I get it out of the mailbox and in to my home. I think I’ll go flip through it again right quick to make sure I didn’t miss anything….


Hula-Hooping for Your Health

Healthmag.jpgIf the Internet is right (and isn’t it always?), the first thing to ever resemble a Hula-Hoop can be traced back to around 1000 B.C. when children in Egypt could be found playing with hoops of dried grapevines. They would roll and scoot these “toys” along the ground with a stick or swing them around their waists.

Fast forward to the 1950s when an American toy company called Wham-O took that idea and manufactured it using brightly colored plastic, and the modern Hula-Hoop was born (and the name trademarked)! Millions were sold to kids all over the world in just a matter of weeks.

It’s now 2010, and the Hula-Hoop is no longer just a toy; it’s an icon. The July/August 2010 issue of Health magazine even suggests you can use the little circle of fun to get into shape. “Hoop Yourself Slim” offers a variety of moves utilizing just the hoop and your own backyard that will work out your arms, your legs and everywhere in between.

Because when a workout is fun, doesn’t it feel just a little less like work?