If the only time you zoom in on your anatomy is when you're tweezing your unibrow or popping a zit, then you could be missing out on some crucial information about your health.
One of the many wonderful things about your body is that it has built-in sickness sensors, and experts say you can spot early warning signs of even serious conditions simply by taking a few minutes to bond with the image in the mirror.
So go ahead, take a closer look. In the immortal words of Ice Cube: It's time to check yourself before you wreck yourself.
Guide to Your Yucky Bodily Functions
If you see dark lines on the nail beds
It could mean Texas-sized moles aren't the only red flags for skin cancer--the disease can also develop under your nails. Yellowish, brown, or black stripes are a sign of cell damage, possibly from melanoma, the deadliest form of skin cancer, says Ariel Ostad, M.D., a dermatologist in New York City.
With early detection and treatment, though, about 95 percent of cases
Blog Posts by The Editors of WOMEN'S HEALTH
If the only time you zoom in on your anatomy is when you're tweezing your unibrow or popping a zit, then you could be missing out on some crucial information about your health.Read More »from 10 Self-Checks Women Should Do Every Morning
A few years ago, a video emerged showing Tiger Woods driving a golf ball like the pro that he is. The only catch: He was just 2 years old at the time. (Two years old!)Read More »from Should Kids Lift Weights?
The message to parents: If you want your kids to excel in sports, you need to start them young. Of course, beyond developing specific skills--such as throwing, kicking, and swinging--improving strength, power, and speed are key components of sports performance training.
How to Teach Your Kid Anything
Which leads many parents to wonder, should my kid lift weights?
Some experts warn that weight training at a young age can damage a child's growth plates. And that concern has merit. "The dangers to growth plates--found at the end of long bones--are real," says Michael Meija, C.S.C.S., Men's Health fitness adviser and owner of B.A.S.E. Sports Conditioning, an organization that specializes in youth athletic training.
However, Mejia is quick to point out that these injuries are almost always the
No time? No equipment? No space? No problem. This travel-friendly, CrossFit-inspired workout will blast fat and sculpt muscleVacations generally present a number of fitness obstacles, and summer ones are no exception. For starters, there never seems to be enough room in your suitcase for bulky running shoes and the five pairs of wedges you just have to bring. Plus, it's way too beautiful outside to be holed up in a gym (never mind a tiny hotel room), and your itinerary is jam-packed (you know, with all that poolside lounging).Read More »from The Get-Lean-on-the-Go Workout Plan
But now is so not the time to slack off. This CrossFit-inspired workout, created by Nathan Forster and Michael Alfaro, co-owners of Reebok CrossFit 5th Avenue in New York City, will keep you on track. For the uninitiated, this uberpopular fitness program runs you through a series of functional exercises at an intense pace. Translation: You build muscle and torch megacalories in under 20 minutes. This versatile workout requires no equipment and only a few feet of space, so your makeshift gym can be a hotel room, a park, or even the beach.
For CrossFit followers, each day is a new
These genius tricks will help you drop pounds and sculpt muscle in record timeIt flies. It's tight. You rarely feel like it's on your side. Of course, we're talking about time. You can blame it--or more accurately, the lack of it--for standing in the way of many things, but scoring the body of your dreams is no longer one of them. The latest research shows that sculpting lean legs, a tight tush, and flat abs doesn't require extra hours at the gym.Read More »from 10 Shape-Up Shortcuts
The trick is to sweat smarter, not harder, and, in many cases, for shorter durations. In fact, a study from McMaster University in Ontario found that people who did brief, fast-paced workouts for a total of 90 minutes a week got just as fit as those who did lower-intensity training for four and a half hours. (Hello! That's an extra three hours a week!)
With that in mind, leverage these shape-up shortcuts--some maximize the precious (and few) workout minutes you've got; others actually shave them away. Now go and make that dream body a reality.
15-Minute Workouts That Crush Calories
1. Jump to It
After each Olympics, a group of athletes emerge as names you'll always remember. Thanks to their unbeatable performances, jaw-dropping finishes, and inspiring attitudes, they show us what a true Olympian looks like. Below, we share insight from some our favorite U.S. women in Olympic history.Read More »from Legends of the Olympic Games
Learn About the Olympic Legends
Q: What's your favorite Olympic moment of all time?
Summer Sanders: I have two: Mary Lou Retton winning gold in the all-around and seeing her smile after her amazing vault. And when Janet Evans handed the torch to Mohammed Ali at the '96 Games.
Lisa Leslie: When the gymnastics team won gold in 1996--that was pretty great. Dominique Dawes was my favorite, and she was at the top of her career. I also loved watching Kerri Walsh and Misty May-Treanor win gold in Athens. I went to their match and it was an awesome moment.
Amy Van Dyken: Watching 14-year-old Amanda Beard win the silver medal in 1996. That was the highlight of everything for me. She went against what
Lose fat and build muscle with these stability moves Whether you're trying to nail a headstand in yoga class, haul groceries up a staircase, or master your stiletto strut, your balance is put to the test daily. Balance training helps you stay sure-footed so you don't wobble, or worse, wipe out.Read More »from The 15-Minute Challenge-Your-Muscles Workout
But the benefits go far beyond just preventing an embarrassing spill. Stability exercises improve your posture, strengthen your core, and help you achieve a toned head-to-toe physique, says Nick Anthony, performance specialist at Core Performance in Phoenix, who designed this routine.
Shape-Up Shortcuts That Work
"These moves work multiple joints through multiple planes of motion," says Anthony. It's a change-up from standard strength exercises that tend to work one muscle in a single movement pattern. The result? You get more out of each move, which helps you sculpt lean, strong, balanced muscles. And since your core is constantly engaged throughout each exercise, you'll get a killer ab workout to boot!
Do three to five reps
You have one week until your beach vacay--here's one tweak you can do every day to look lighter and feel firmer.Read More »from Your 7-Day Slim Down Plan
Eliminate Processed Foods
They're easy to get sucked into, yet unsatisfying. "They make you crave more food than your body needs," says Wiatt. If you can't pronounce the ingredients, the food is off-limits. Or hit the produce aisle for foods with no label at all.
Snacks That Burn More Fat
Lay Off The Sauce
Not only are alcoholic drinks dehydrating and high in calories, they also make resisting unnecessary nibbles incredibly difficult. (No shocker here: Studies prove women consume more calories after drinking.)
Get A Fiber Fix
It may be tempting to nix all carbs, but don't forgo fiber, a proven source of long-lasting satiety. Sprinkle flaxseed onto yogurt or add a few teaspoons of sliced almonds to your salad. If you're really craving carbs, have 1/3 cup fiber-rich quinoa, barley, or brown rice.
78 Ways to Cut
Firm your rear and flatten abs with these 10 easy, effective exercisesYou're always busting it, saving it, covering it, or laughing it off, but how much time do you actually devote to sculpting your butt? Not enough.Read More »from The Build-a-Better-Booty Workout
Pretty much anytime you're standing on two feet, your glutes and hamstrings are hard at work. Problem is, like most Americans, you're probably spending more and more time parked on your backside in front of a computer or flatscreen.
That's too bad, since your glutes are your largest (and possibly most powerful) muscle group and therefore an all-star calorie burner and metabolism booster...as long as you use them. Neglect them long enough and your bum becomes your body's problem child--loaded with potential, but lazy, forgetful, and unmotivated. And not so hot-looking either.
Fitness Rules You Should Never Follow
Show your buns some love with these 10 killer moves. They work the glutes and the muscles that support them (the hip flexors and hamstrings) to tighten and tone your booty and core. Whether you choose to add them to your existing
Let these healthy foods help you out of a jam when...When things aren't going your way, don't get mad--get healthy. These nutritious solutions will hit the spot and turn your situation around.Read More »from 10 Best Foods for Life's Troubles
You Forget To Pack A Toothbrush
Food Fix: Monterey Jack
Researchers found that eating less than one-quarter of an ounce of jack, Cheddar, Gouda, or mozzarella cheese will boost pH levels to protect your pearly whites from cavities.
You Look In The Mirror and Think, "That Laugh Line Wasn't There Yesterday, Was It?"
Food Fix: Guacamole
A study in the Journal of the American College of Nutrition found that people with a high intake of olive oil showed fewer wrinkles than those with a high intake of butter. The reason: monounsaturated fats, which are found in abundance in olive oil. So drizzle some olive oil on your salad, and if that's not convenient, grab a side of guacamole; avocados have the same monounsaturated fats as olive oil, plus plenty of fiber and healthy B vitamins.
11 Best Foods for Your Skin
This high-octane routine blasts fat and firms your lower half-fast! The state of your rear view is never more in-your-face than during bikini season.Read More »from The Blast-Your-Lower-Half Workout
Get lean legs and a tight tush with this supercharged circuit inspired by the new Aspen Ascent class at Reebok Sports Club/NY. Group exercise instructor, Stephanie Levinson created this fast-paced workout that will blast and firm your lower half. Each high-energy move strengthens and shapes your quads, glutes, hamstrings, and calves while also improving your cardiovascular endurance, core stability, balance, and agility.
Three times a week, complete each exercise, moving from one to the next without rest. Repeat two or three times total. For an added challenge, hold light dumbbells to work your upper body.
10 Best Fitness Foods for Women
Over-and-Back Lunge with Biceps Curl
Step forward off a step, arms at your sides, and lower into a lunge. Press through your front heel to stand up, raising your knee and curling your arms up to your shoulders. Immediately step back into a lunge and