It’s never too early to get beach-ready! Slim down and shape up for summer with our celebrity fitness challenge! From AcroYoga to cardio and strength training, these Hollywood workout tips will get you fit-minded in no time. Continue reading
While we all know how easy it is to put personal health on the backburner for more immediate matters like work demands and family dinners, paying poor attention to your health will eventually catch up to you. Thankfully, getting back in shape does not have to be overwhelming or too time-consuming. Rather than reinventing the wheel in your attempts to go from flab to fit, make sure that you are educated on tried-and-true tips that will get you on the path to looking great and feeling better! Do you know about three of the best fitness magazines for your health?
As the name implies, Shape Magazine is an ideal magazine for women who want to get – and stay – in shape. Their articles are full of advice on everything from quick exercises that will help you get the body that you have always wanted to motivational stories about women who successfully made their health a priority. If you want advice on how to look and feel fantastic, then Shape Magazine might become your new best fitness friend!
First For Women Magazine focuses on living a well-rounded life – a goal that is easier said than done. How often do you sacrifice exercise for the sake of running errands? While errands are an unavoidable part of life, skipping activities that promote your health will compromise your well-being over time and can leave you feeling too tired to finish everything on your to-do list. This read is for those of us who often put our health and exercise needs behind life’s other demands. First For Women Magazine will help you balance your life between family time and “me” time and even leave some room for relaxation.
Health Magazine takes a holistic approach toward fitness. By addressing topics like food, relationships, and fashion in additional to tidbits about exercise, Health Magazine is perfect for the woman who wants to make her life healthier in every aspect. From recipes that promote well-being to tips on how to look younger, Health Magazine is the title of choice for many women.
Summer is the season of bathing suits, warm weather that allows for more outside workouts, and fresh fruits and vegetables. Keep your health on your mind during the rest of the summer!
Nashville-based guest blogger Tabitha Tune offers in-depth pointers for those looking to start Bikram Yoga.
My first Bikram Yoga class was in 2004, and I will never forget how I felt–totally and utterly miserable! Before you think, “Wow, you’re not selling this very well,” it turns out I just wasn’t prepared. But with some good advice from instructors and figuring out, over time, what works best for me, my practice is still going strong eight years later.
I have yet to find a physical activity that I love as much or is as exhilarating and beneficial for me, both mentally and physically, as Bikram Yoga. It certainly helps that we have two Bikram certified studios in Nashville–one in Cool Springs and Bikram Yoga Nashville which just opened its doors in January.
While it didn’t take me all eight years to figure out how to be properly prepared, it took a bit of trial and error over some time. So to save you that trouble and to help you make sure your first class wasn’t like mine, here are some tips to make your Bikram Yoga experience great:
Hydrate, Hydrate, Hydrate
It’s summer, and it’s already sweltering in Nashville, so it’s just good sense to drink water throughout the day to stay hydrated. This is even more important before heading into a 105 degree room where you’ll be sweating a lot. By “hydrate” I don’t mean chug more soda or energy drinks–just stick to good ole H20. Water is your best friend in this weather, and it will serve you well on your Bikram days.
Try to eat at least two hours before your class and practice Bikram Yoga on an almost empty stomach. That said, don’t starve yourself because you will need strength and energy to take a class. While there’s no impact in Bikram Yoga, there are still lots of cardiovascular aspects and some postures that compress, so practicing with a full stomach could prove to be very uncomfortable.
You don’t need fancy yoga clothes, but you also don’t want to wear anything ill-fitting or loose/baggy that could obstruct movement or that won’t let your skin breathe and sweat freely. While you’re in the early stages of your Bikram practice, dress in sportswear that’s meant for yoga, made of breathable fabric that’s stretchy and that will let you stretch and move. The same applies to guys–a pair of running shorts and a tank top will work well.
Listen to the instructor and listen to your body. Bikram Yoga instructors go through a thorough certification process to ensure that students are taught to do the right thing at the right pace. They know what they’re doing as they guide you through every posture in a precise way that provides the deepest stretches and a complete workout without risk of injury. However, only you will know when something hurts, so when your body tells you to stop doing something, listen to it and take it easy for that moment.
Keep an Open Mind
Regardless of your fitness level or your yoga experience, go into the class with no expectations and enjoy yourself. You will hear this often: “All you need to do is stay in the room.” Even if you just sit and watch the entire time, you’re already fast on your way to receiving the benefits of Bikram Yoga. Every class is different, and to this day I still learn something new each time I go back into the yoga room.
You will figure out your own habits as your Bikram Yoga practice progresses. In the meantime, have a great class!
When I was a kid, jumping rope and singing silly rhymes was fun. It wasn’t a workout; it was what I did in the driveway with friends on a sunny afternoon. I remember the sound the rope made as it hit the concrete and how much my friends and I loved to try lining up four or five deep to all jump the same rope. That didn’t always work, but we tried anyway and just kept singing and giggling.
Now that I’m all grown up, the March issue of Self magazine is calling the jump rope the No. 1 way to melt fat. That’s quite a statement! In eight minutes, jumping rope can burn 100 calories. Who doesn’t have eight spare minutes in their day?
If it’s been years since you’ve played Double Dutch in the driveway with your friends, Self offers some great tips for getting the most from your rope–and your workout.
- Hold your elbows square to your body and let your wrists do all the turning. Contracting your arms and shoulders along the way will sculpt those upper body muscles.
- Engage your core to protect your back and knees from injury and tone your midsection at the same time.
- Jump and land on the balls of your feet–no need to bring them any more than an inch from the floor. For greater comfort in your legs and feet, wear cross training sneakers.
I actually keep up with a few of those gradeschool friends on Facebook. They all have kids and careers and activities they enjoy now. I wonder if they might meet me in the driveway to sing and giggle? And hey, we could burn a few hundred calories while we’re at it!
I’ve yet to meet a parent who had extra time to himself or herself during the day. If your days are like mine (and I’m sure they are), I’m on the go from morning to night. The only “me” time comes before my kids get up or after they go to sleep. Exercising is always on my daily to-do list, but it’s definitely the item I skip when time is tight.
An article I read in the February 2012 issue of Family Circle magazine, however, gave me the perfect motivation to fit a workout into my routine, even when my days are busy. “Break your training into three 10-minutes sessions throughout the day,” says Andrea Metcalf, a certified personal trainer and the author of “Naked Fitness.”
Metcalf offered a few ideas for routines, some of which allow your kids to join in:
Bend and stretch walking. Alternate with 20 lunges followed by 40 strides. Repeat for 10 minutes.
Jump rope for one minute. Stop and twirl the rope in a figure eight pattern for one minute. Repeat for 10 minutes.
Run or walk upstairs for 10 minutes. If you’re able, take two at a time on the way up and down.
Bust a move. Turn on your favorite dance music and shake it out for 10 minutes. (My kids would love this one!)
Bike it. Ride a stationary bike for three minutes. Continue pedaling and raise your arms to create letters: T (arms out the side), U (overhead press), V (arms extended), W (arms up with elbows close to the ribs). Lower arms and continue pedaling for two minutes.
Jack and jog. Jog for two minutes. Stop and do 10 jumping jacks. Continue alternating until you reach 10 minutes.
Ten-minute exercise circuits sound like the perfect solution to my no-time-to-work-out excuse. They can be done in my driveway while the baby is napping, or in my den while the older two work on their watercolors. Now, if only I could work out a way to shower and dress in 10 minutes too!
I’m starting to get the message: Eating right and living a healthy, active lifestyle is about much more that maintaining a healthy weight. It’s also about keeping your heart strong and beating.
Prevention’s heart-healthy foods list overlaps Health’s a bit–healthy fish and nuts are included on both–but Prevention also adds oranges, dark chocolate and garlic, among others. The magazine suggests that living for a healthy heart starts with the foods we put on our plates. We all know that what we eat is important to our health, and I keep hoping that the more I hear it, the more I’ll live it.
To multiply the health benefits of a healthy plate full of food, Prevention also includes a fitness routine in the pages following the diet advice, complete with a weekly workout schedule, illustrations of the moves and the benefits of the whole regimen. The magazine also outlines many alternative medicines that can help heal and keep our hearts strong, as well as the latest and greatest in medications for heart disease.
Bottom line: Love your heart, and it will love you right back.