Hill Street Studios/FITNESS MagazineBy K. Aleisha Fetters
Guys aren't the only ones who like to play with fire. Girls can man the grill with the best of them. And we aren't just plopping frozen patties and hot dogs on a bed of charcoals. Anyone can do that. No, we are getting straight-up culinary -- and healthy -- in our backyards.
So whether you're a newbie or queen of the cookout, here's how to cook like one lean, mean, grill-master machine.
Related: 10 Guilt-Free Recipes for the Grill
Learn the Lingo
First things first: You need to know what in the world you're talking about. Here are the top must-know cookout terms you probably don't know from celebrity chef Diane Dimeo, champion of Food Network's Chopped. Throw a few out to your friends and you'll sound seriously legit.
• Bark: Any outside portion of meat that becomes dark, crispy, and seared when cooked at high temps.
• Brine: A salt and water mixture for soaking meat prior to cooking to help it retain its moisture and preserve it.
• Black and Blue: Meat that
Blog Posts by FITNESS Magazine
Hill Street Studios/FITNESS MagazineBy K. Aleisha FettersRead More »from The FITNESS Healthy Grilling Guide
Denise Crew/FITNESS MagazineBy Ayren Jackson-CannadyRead More »from Sweat: 7 Reasons it Does a Body Good
Whether you're breaking a sweat at the gym or just walking down the street on a scorching day (Guilty!), you may be giving your health a huge boost. Here, experts dish on the mental, physical and emotional benefits caused by a little perspiration.
Related: The 7 Worst Health Habits Ever
Sweat Side Effect #1: Eases Pain
Got a kink in your neck that won't quit (and no one around to massage it out)? Working up a sweat just might soothe the soreness, experts say. "Exercise stimulates neurochemical pathways in the brain, resulting in the production of endorphins that act as natural painkillers," says James Ting, M.D., a sports medicine physician at Hoag Orthopedic Institute in Irvine, CA.
Sweat Side Effect #2: Blasts Zits
"When you sweat, your pores open and release the grit and grime that has built up inside of them," says Whitney Bowe, M.D., a dermatologist in Briarcliff Manor, NY. Caveat: Don't just sweat and go. All of that dirt from your pores accumulates
Kate Sears/FITNESS MagazineBy Julie Meyer, RDRead More »from The 10 Best Foods for Flat Abs
Try these ab-flattening foods to boost your abs routine's effectiveness, control belly bloat, and maintain a healthy metabolism. Here, the top 10 foods for flat abs.
Related: The FITNESS Healthy Grill Guide
These delicious and versatile nuts contain filling protein and fiber, not to mention vitamin E, a powerful antioxidant. They're also a good source of magnesium, a mineral your body must have in order to produce energy, build and maintain muscle tissue, and regulate blood sugar. "A stable blood-sugar level helps prevent cravings that can lead to overeating and weight gain," says David Katz, MD, a professor at the Yale University School of Medicine. But what makes almonds most interesting is their ability to block calories. Research indicates that the composition of their cell walls may help reduce the absorption of all of their fat, making them an extra-lean nut.
Try for: An ounce a day (about 23 almonds), with approximately 160 calories. An empty
Laura Doss/FITNESS MagazineBy Kristina GrishRead More »from How to Recover from a Tough Workout
When Meghan Rabbitt, 32, was living in Boulder, Colorado, she couldn't get enough of the great outdoors -- biking, hiking, swimming, you name it. But so much opportunity for activity left her with regular aches and pains. "I was feeling so sore one day that I went to yoga to try to stretch myself out," she says. "And my instructor, ironically, started talking about how muscle inflammation is actually a gift; that achy feeling is our body's way of telling us to back off and let it heal so it can make us stronger. That one little gem has really changed the way I think about exercise soreness and inflammation. I now look at it as an important part of the process rather than something I can't wait to have end so I can get back to the gym."
Most of us hear the word inflammation and images of swollen ankles, puffy knees, and ice packs quickly come to mind, followed by fears of being sidelined with strains, sprains, and other annoying injuries. But inflammation is also
Ericka McConnell/FITNESS MagazineBy Joanna ChenRead More »from Strength Train Your Brain
I know what to do when my thighs get a little jiggly (hello, squats and lunges), but what about when the trouble zone in question is a little higher up -- like on top of my shoulders? I'm talking about my brain, which has gotten noticeably flabby in the past few months. Suddenly it was taking me several minutes to figure out how to cook Minute Rice. Names of celebrities spent more time on the tip of my tongue than rolling off it. "You know who I'm talking about, right?" I would ask my husband. "That actor in that hit movie.... That guy?"
The one thing I did know: It was time for a brain-boosting intervention. So when I got an e-mail informing me that I had been selected to join the tens of millions of women and men who have plunked down money for the privilege of becoming a member of an online "brain gym," where I could play interactive games that are scientifically designed to sharpen the mind, I was intrigued.
Turns out, most of the people who belong to these gyms
Melissa Punch/FITNESS MagazineBy Ginny GravesRead More »from 8 Simple Ways to Get Rid of Belly Bloat
Either your jeans shrank or your belly grew, and chances are it's the latter. You're exercising and eating right, so what's up with the bloating? Sometimes the culprit is obvious (hello, Aunt Flo and last night's burrito!), but other times your healthy habits are the cause. Read on for five surprising reasons your belly can balloon -- plus advice on how to deflate it fast.
Related: 6 Foods That Fight Off Belly Bloat
Tummy Puffer: Downing Fluids Before Your Workout
It's important to drink plenty of fluids when it's hot out to prevent dehydration, especially when you exercise. Also, steadily sipping water encourages healthy digestion by keeping food moving through your system, says Christie Achenbach, RD, a dietitian in Destin, Florida, who specializes in nutrition for exercise. But chugging too much water before your workout makes your belly swell.
Deflate-it fix: To avoid that sloshy, overfull feeling, drink about 16 to 24 ounces of water one to two hours before
Peter Ardito/FITNESS MagazineBy Jenna Autuori-DedicRead More »from Running with Your Dog: Expert Tips
Take dog walking to the next speed level and you and your canine will score twofer benefits. "Your dog is a great motivator who makes exercising fun," says Jt Clough, the author of 5K Training Guide: Running with Dogs. Capitalize on your daily outing by burning more calories as you build your pet's cardio fitness. Lace -- and leash -- up with these tips from Clough.
Related: You Know You're a Runner When...
Ease into it.
Dogs should be physically active for at least a half hour twice a day, according to the American Kennel Club. Begin with 15 minutes at a comfortable clip in the first week, adding five to 10 minutes and more speed as your four-legged friend progresses, Clough recommends.
Pace yourself -- and your pal.
"Most dogs run faster than humans," Clough says, but you shouldn't feel you have to sprint. Heed these suggested speeds from Josiah Neuman, the training director for the Neuman K-9 Academy: Small dogs, like Boston terriers, can typically go 2 1/2 to 3 1/2
Amy Postle/FITNESS MagazineBy Melissa WalkerRead More »from 4 Crash Diets–Tested!
We asked women to try four popular new eating plans that promise slimming results fast. Get the good (14 pounds lost!), the bad (zero pounds lost!), and the icky (spinach juice!) right here.
Related: 11 Healthy Ways to Detox
The Paleo Solution
The Diet: Paleo Solution proponents believe that our early ancestors' whole-foods diet is healthier than our modern (superprocessed) regimen. That means no chips or cookies or even prepackaged "healthy" foods, like yogurt. Instead you eat three to four meals daily of four to eight ounces of lean protein (chicken, turkey, or seafood), raw or lightly cooked vegetables, and healthy fat (oils or nuts). Daily caloric intake hovers around 1,200 to 1,400.
The Tester: The Sweets Addict, Christian McKenzie, 29
"My weakness is cookies and cake," Christian admits. When she noticed that her energy was low and she had put on about seven pounds, she joined a gym and started reducing portion sizes. Christian stopped gaining but didn't drop
Denise Crew/FITNESS MagazineBy Sharon LiaoRead More »from Why Do You Pig Out After You Work Out?
Before training for my first marathon, I prepped like crazy. I read running books, devised a plan, and scheduled workouts into my Google calendar. What I didn't anticipate was around-the-clock hunger. After a run, my stomach screamed for sustenance all day. "I'm run-gry!" I cried as I plowed through sleeves of crackers and cookies and stacks of pancakes. It's no wonder I didn't shed a pound -- and probably gained a few -- despite logging hundreds of miles in four months.
Research suggests that my experience is surprisingly common. In a Louisiana State University study, it was the dieters who worked out the most who didn't lose as much weight as they expected to. "Too often, people overcompensate for exercise," explains Mary Jane Detroyer, RD, an exercise physiologist in New York City. "That's one of the main reasons women don't get the weight-loss results they anticipate." Use these strategies to outrun your hunger so you can finally cross your weight-loss finish
Bryan McCay/FITNESS MagazineBy Karen Ansel, RDRead More »from 30 Surprisingly Healthy Fast Foods
Sometimes eating on the fly is a fact of life. Findings from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reveal that fast food accounts for more than 15 percent of daily calories for people in their twenties and thirties. If your busy schedule calls for the occasional grab-and-go meal, FITNESS is here to help. Our cheat sheet identifies two safe bets for lunch or dinner at 10 of the most popular chains. With these menu picks, which each have 480 calories or fewer and are low in artery-clogging saturated fat, you can eat burgers, tacos, and fries guilt-free.
Related: The Unhealthiest Ballpark Foods to Eat
• Premium Caesar Salad with Grilled Chicken and low-fat balsamic vinaigrette plus Fruit 'n Yogurt Parfait; 375 calories, 9.5g fat (4g saturated)
• Grilled Honey Mustard Snack Wrap plus small french fries; 480 calories, 19g fat (5g saturated)
• Fresco Steak Burrito Supreme plus black beans; 430 calories, 10.5g fat (3g saturated)