Karen Pearson/FITNESS MagazineBy the editors of FITNESS Magazine
Attitude means the difference between diet success and failure. Our 8-step plan will keep you on track.
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1. Define Your Motivation
Weight loss is a three-part process: Exercising and cutting calories are vital, but your mental outlook can mean the difference between success and failure.
"Self-defeating thoughts are often the most overlooked factors when a dieter gets off track," says Jeffrey Wilbert, PhD, author of Fattitudes: Beat Self-Defeat and Win Your War with Weight (St. Martin's Press, 2000). "You feel disappointed when a quick fix turns out to be anything but, or weak if you succumb to an intense craving for ice cream." Without the resolve to overcome such thoughts, sticking with any major lifestyle change can be difficult, if not impossible.
The key is to adopt the right attitude before you start your plan. "If you're really serious about slimming down, you need to think long-term.
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Hop into a cold shower before your workout. A German study this year found that a pre-exercise cooldown improves performance in the heat -- probably because it lowers your heart rate as well as core and skin temperatures. Too chicken to try it? Even just cooling your neck or head with an ice pack may make a difference.
2. Check the map
Does your usual running route leave you broiling in the sun? Find a shady new one through the Road Runners Club of America (rrca.org), which features running routes around the country via Google maps. You can also log on to weather.com, which offers a local parks forecast, a fitness comfort index, and an hourly forecast to help you figure out the best time of day to exercise.
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"No mimosa for me. I have to go running after brunch."
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"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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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.
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Use short, fat glasses for
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Week One: France
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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
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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
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A liquid base
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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
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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.
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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.
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