James Worrell/FITNESS MagazineBy Kate Rope
"No mimosa for me. I have to go running after brunch."
"Dessert? I'm too full from dinner."
"Sorry, can't make happy hour; I'm off to Spinning class."
We all know a friend who seems immune to the siren song of cocktails, cupcakes, and canapes. Wouldn't you like to know her secret? Shh...She's found a new muscle to flex: her willpower. That's right.
Researchers have found that you can chisel your self-control just as you do your quads or biceps. "With practice your self-control muscle becomes less flabby, so you have the strength you need to stick with a weight-loss or exercise program," says Nathan DeWall, PhD, assistant professor of social psychology at the University of Kentucky in Lexington. We asked leaders in the field of self-regulation (that's scientist-speak for self-control) to share simple exercises that will bolster your resolve. Soon you'll be the one trading daiquiris for Diet Cokes and rising with the sun to do your morning run.
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James Worrell/FITNESS MagazineBy Kate RopeRead More »from Supersize Your Self-Control
Sarah Kehoe/FITNESS MagazineBy Holly C. Corbett and Anna RoufosRead More »from Little Habits, Huge Health Payoffs
You have tons of health goals -- but not enough time to make them a reality. Now we'll help you reach every one without devoting your life to getting there. Here, super-speedy ways to improve you health in only minutes a day.
Related: The 7 Worst Health Habits Ever
In 1 Minute You Can...Find Your Focus
Instead of thinking I need to work out, fine-tune your objective to something like I'm going to do my 30-minute DVD workout on Monday before work. "Being detailed forces you to think through the steps necessary to accomplish the goal and makes it harder to find excuses," says Jackie Keller, trainer and author of Body After Baby.
In 2 Minutes You Can...Build a Better Brain
Right-handed? Use your left hand to brush your teeth or vice versa. "This improves brain signaling, which helps prevent age-related memory loss," says Frederic Vagnini, MD, coauthor of Count Down Your Age.
In 3 Minutes You Can...Set a Healthier Table
Use short, fat glasses for
Denise Crew/FITNESS MagazineBy Melissa RothRead More »from Rev it Up: Reboot Your Metabolism
I am lying on what looks like a cross between a jumbo Xerox machine and a tanning bed at the University of California, Los Angeles, Risk Factor Obesity Program as the big mechanical arm of a DEXA (dual energy X-ray absorptiometry) scanner moves over my head and then down to my feet. I came here to get the latest high-tech body-composition tests and to learn how fast my metabolism is.
Two minutes later a virtual relief map of the muscle, fat, and bone in my body starts to fill in on a computer screen.
"I never would've guessed," says Zhaoping Li, MD, PhD, the UCLA professor of clinical medicine analyzing my results, when she reads me the verdict: 40 percent body fat. As in obese. Except I'm a size 8. Here in Los Angeles, that alone can make you a plus size, but at five feet four inches and 148 pounds, I'm really just three or four pounds overweight.
To think that I had actually been looking forward to this visit. Me, the lucky girl who never dieted, never gained the
Bonnie Holland/FITNESS MagazineBy Kimberly GoadRead More »from 6 Steps to Make a Healthy Change
Trying something new in your job, your workout, or your relationship can reenergize your life. Here's how to take the risks that can be truly transformative.
Related: 9 Steps to Reach Any Goal
3 Steps to Get Started
Kalyn Johnson was a successful 34-year-old attorney at a major New York City law firm. It was the career path she'd always dreamed of, and yet she could count on one finger the number of days she'd been happy on the job. After listening to Kalyn talk about how unfulfilled she was, a friend made a radical suggestion: Strangers were always complimenting Kalyn's style. Why didn't she quit the law firm and launch a business as a wardrobe consultant? The idea of making a career switch intrigued Kalyn, but it also terrified her. "I saw it as a choice between practicing law while maintaining an upscale lifestyle or scraping by as an entrepreneur," she says. "I didn't know if I could do it."
That's the thing about change: We're all for it when it doesn't involve
Peter Ardito/FITNESS MagazineBy Ayren Jackson-CannadyRead More »from The World's Healthiest Diets
As a college student living in the international dorm, I should have been studying my Parisian roomie's eating habits instead of just coveting her style. In nations with low obesity rates, women know how to eat right and enjoy every bite. "The diets they follow often place an emphasis on whole grains and legumes and use meat sparingly," says Daphne Miller, MD, the author of The Jungle Effect: The Healthiest Diets from Around the World. They're a far cry from the typical U.S. diet, a processed, produce-deficient carb-fest. Although I can no longer use the excuse that I'm a broke college student, I still live on lattes, burgers, and apple cobbler. So I embarked on a 30-day culinary experiment, borrowing secrets from some of the world's healthiest places to slim my 170-pound frame.
Related: 10 Strategies to Lose Fat and Keep It Off for Good
Week One: France
Despite baguettes and Brie, French women have the lowest average body mass index in Europe. "It's true
Amy Postle/FITNESS MagazineBy Eleanor LangstonRead More »from Ditch the Sunblock Excuses
Stay pretty and protected all summer long with these new head-to-toe defenders and dermatologists' secrets for preventing sun damage, burning, and skin cancer. Now go out and play!
Related: Find Out Your Skin Cancer Risk
Skip-It Excuse: "Sunblock Is Too Greasy to Wear Under Makeup"
It's risky to rely solely on the SPF in your base: Derms say that to get the full SPF value listed on the packaging, it would require seven times the amount of foundation and 14 times the powder you normally wear. "Women don't put enough on, and the makeup's pigments may dilute the sunscreen," says Joshua Fox, MD, a dermatologist in New York City. Pair makeup with a broad-spectrum sunscreen that's tailored to your complexion concern. Have dry skin? Olay Regenerist UV Defense Regenerating Lotion SPF 50 ($30, drugstores) contains moisturizing peptides. Want to prevent lines? Shiseido Urban Environment UV Protection Cream SPF 35 ($30, sephora.com) is packed with
- FITNESS Magazine | Healthy Living – Thu, May 30, 2013 1:29 PM EDT
Dan Saelinger/FITNESS MagazineBy Jessica GirdwainRead More »from Home, Slim, Home: 10 Ways to Make Weight Loss Easier at Home
You don't have to hit the gym -- or even change out of your pj's -- to burn more calories. Make these supereasy home improvements to start tipping the scales in your favor.
Related: 12 Sneaky Ways to Slim Down Your Diet
Cut the Lights
Installing a dimmer switch in your kitchen and turning on some Adele is a bright idea: Diners who ate a meal under soft lights with relaxing music in the background consumed 133 fewer calories compared with those who ate in bright, noisy environments, a recent Cornell University study revealed. Calm vibes encourage you to eat more slowly, so your brain has time to register that you're satisfied before you're stuffed. Not handy? No problem. Mike Scott, the resident lighting expert for Lowe's, says even a novice can install a dimmer switch in 15 minutes or less (click on the Ideas & How-Tos tab at lowes.com for a step-by-step video tutorial).
Take a Stand
The average woman packs on about a pound a year once she hits 25. Fight Father
Jay Sullivan/Fitness MagazineBy Jeannette MoningerRead More »from Hidden Benefits of 8 Healthy Habits
Take a shortcut to a better you with habits that provide a double dose of wellness. We know you do a zillion things at once, so we ID'd eight moves that provide a good-for-you one-two punch. That means in the time that it takes to do one thing -- like hit your favorite yoga class or grill up an omega-3-rich salmon fillet for dinner -- you'll reap twice the benefits. Give yourself a pat on the back for those you already practice and incorporate the others into your routine. Come on, we know you can't resist a two-for-one deal!
Related: The 7 Worst Health Habits Ever
Healthy habit: Regular dentist visits
Hidden perk: A fitter ticker
It's no secret that taking care of your pearly whites is good for your heart. Bacteria from gum disease may enter your bloodstream and trigger an immune response that causes arteries to swell, constrict, and collect plaque, all of which increase your chance of having heart problems. But it's not only your habits at home that count. A study
Lisa Shin/FITNESS MagazineBy Juno DeMeloRead More »from Build a Better Smoothie
You don't need to hire a personal chef (as if!) or resign yourself to starvation to get bikini-ready. All you need is a blender. "Blending is one of the quickest, easiest ways to prep healthy foods, especially fresh fruits and veggies," says FITNESS advisory board member Harley Pasternak, trainer, nutrition expert, and author of the new book The Body Reset Diet. Get his favorite smoothie recipes plus details on how they can kick-start your metabolism and keep it fired up for good.
Related: 8 Healthy and Refreshing Smoothies to Try
The Slim-Down Formula
Here are the four things you need to create your own tasty, healthy combos.
A liquid base
Pasternak favors milk -- 1 percent or nonfat -- because it's rich in vitamin D and calcium, which can help your body break down fat. But nondairy milks, like soy and almond, are fine too, he says, as is flavored water.
Getting protein at every meal helps you maintain lean muscle mass, which means you burn more
- FITNESS Magazine | Healthy Living – Fri, May 24, 2013 10:45 AM EDT
Gabrielle Revere/Fitness MagazineBy Alice OglethorpeRead More »from Truth or Bare: What I Learned About Myself from Trying Naked Yoga
I like to make decisions based on what my 80-year-old self would want me to do. Stay out dancing in Florence until the sun comes up? Absolutely! Volunteer to model white jeans on the Today show? Of course! But recently I forced myself to see just how deep that conviction went.
Related: QUIZ: Which Yoga Style Is Right for You?
It all started with an assignment from my editor at FITNESS: Get out and try the naked yoga trend, in which regular people strip down to nothing and do yoga as a way of becoming more accepting of their bodies. Or...something like that.
"Why me?" I asked.
"Because you're the last person who would normally do it," my editor replied. (She's right. I don't even like to change in front of other women in the gym locker room.) Surprisingly, I didn't instantly shoot down the idea, and that had nothing to do with the possible paycheck. At 32, getting naked in a room full of strangers wasn't high on my bucket list, but this was a chance to see how