No matter what your running level, you can always be a better runner. Here are our favorite tips from the year that we've used to become better runners in 2012!
You don't have to adopt the extreme 1980's fad diet to enjoy the health benefits of grapefruit and watch your waistline shrink. Although this sweet and tangy fruit is mostly known by its diet reputation, it is actually loaded with health benefits (like lycopene and vitamin C) and is versatile enough to be enjoyed as a treat beyond breakfast. It's considered a fat-burning food that can kick-start your metabolism, so there is no reason to let this fruit be deemed an '80s has-been. Since it's currently in season, here are four reasons why grapefruit can help you lose weight.
- Keeps you full: Grapefruit is loaded with fiber, keeping you full longer and reducing the likelihood of mindless snacking. One serving of grapefruit has only 53 calories and about 2 grams of fiber. Research has also found that eating half a grapefruit before every meal can lead to greater weight loss in dieters. While trying this at every meal may be a bit extreme, this tactic would work well for breakfast.
- Low-calorie substitution: There are are several ways to enjoy grapefruit beyond breakfast. Consider substituting dried fruit for slices of grapefruit in salads or using it to serve up a satisfying dinner alongside jerk grilled chicken. You can even use it to satisfy your sweet tooth as a light dessert using this sabayon gratin recipe.
- Stabilizes blood sugar: Study shows that this magic fruit has compounds that can reduce insulin levels. Low levels of insulin mean your body can more efficiently use food for energy rather than storing it as fat; a candy bar can't claim that.
- Curbs cravings: There is something to be said about kick-starting your day with grapefruit. Studies show that the mere smell of grapefruit can aid in weight loss. Researchers speculate that sniffing grapefruit oil has effect on liver enzymes, which can help to nix cravings and spur weight loss. Time to consider those grapefruit-scented bath products!
If you often find yourself crunched for time — but still wanting to do crunches — consider our favorite total-body, 10-minute workouts of 2012. In a snap, these eight workouts will help you break a sweat, fire up your metabolism, and burn some serious calories. Since these videos only take a few short minutes, they can also be combined for the ultimate total body tone. Press play and use these workouts as a guide to make every minute and every move fit within your busy schedule.
Lighten up your go-to cheese-and-crackers appetizer by sneaking in a low-calorie substitute. Add plain Greek yogurt, and nobody will ever know the difference. Spread it on celery or any other veggies to counterbalance the cheese and make a healthy and delicious treat for any occasion.
See the recipe after the break!
Prep for your next holiday party by dancing in your own living room. Burn some calories and shake your hips with Louis Van Amstel of Dancing With the Stars. This 10-minute workout features dances, like the cha-cha and merengue, from his LaBlast Fitness DVD series. Put on your dancing shoes, press play, and get ready to trip the light fantastic. And sweat some too.
Planning to wow this New Year's Eve? Don't skip your workouts this week. We've got a seven-day plan that incorporates short workouts that pack a punch in the calorie-burning department. Even if you're busy, you can fit these workouts in — and burn over 2,000 calories in the process. All calculations are based on a 130-pound woman unless otherwise noted.
Monday: Start out your week with half an hour of energizing cardio. Jogging at five mph will burn 216 calories in 30 minutes.
Tuesday: If you're celebrating Christmas, you may be pressed for time today. Instead of skipping your workout, take a break with one of our 10-minute total-body workouts (try this 10-minute no-equipment full-body workout) and burn 72 calories.
Wednesday: Go for another 30-minute jog at five mph and burn another 216 calories.
Thursday: Time to strength train. Strengthening and toning your muscles will help you look your best. Thirty minutes of strength training will burn 216 calories and work your entire body. Here are three 10-minute workouts to try:
- Jeanette Jenkins's belly-fat-blasting workout
- Tony Horton's P90X workout
- Ashley Borden's metabolism-boosting workout
Relaxing during the holidays is exactly what you should be doing to de-stress after a hectic month, but that doesn't mean you have to stake a 24-hour claim on the couch. Here are five ways to get more bang for your buck and burn 100 calories in 10 minutes, so you can get on with the relaxing without the guilt.
- Jump for it: Grab your jump rope, set your watch, and go; 10 minutes of jump roping burns 98 calories.
- Run a mile: Need to get away? Lace up your sneaks and go for a mile-long run; running at a six-miles-per-hour pace burns 98 calories.
- Go for a ride: If you're lucky enough to live somewhere where the roads aren't icy, go for a brisk bike ride; cycling at a pace of 14 to 16 miles per hour will burn 104 calories in 10 minutes.
- Home gym: That elliptical you bought last January gathering dust? Hop on for 10 minutes and burn 112 calories.
- High-impact aerobics: A vigorous 10-minute cardio and strength-training workout will burn 104 calories. Try one of our 10-minute Class FitSugar sessions, which use little or no equipment, like this 10-minute full-body Victoria's Secret workout, this high-energy bootcamp workout, or this 10-minute metabolism-boosting workout with weights.
*Calorie counts are based on a 130-pound woman.
Start working your inner thighs now to look sculpted in cute Winter leggings all season. Unlike most thigh exercises, this one is done on the ground, so you can use the control to tone your thighs. Try it anywhere and get ready to show off your new slender gams.
- Start by lying flat on your back on a mat or rug.
- Extend your right leg straight into the air, pointing your toes.
- Keep your arms by your side, pressed into the floor for support.
- Open your right leg to the side, leading with your toes.
- Make sure your hips stay down while your back remains connected to the floor.
- Draw your right leg down toward the opposite leg while keeping it lifted from the floor.
- Extend your toes back up toward the ceiling and continue the circle motion for a minute or 30 to 40 times before reversing.
See the rest of the move after the break!
Who isn't a sucker for holiday cocktails? Warm, spicy, sweet, and creamy is kind of everyone's thing. Unfortunately, all the spin classes in the world are not going to save you from a daily eggnog habit this season. Luckily there's a healthy alternative to just about every holiday cocktail that normally spells disaster for a healthy diet. Keep reading to see which traditional holiday cocktails are the worst offenders — and what their healthy counterparts are.