• 0908-fall_sm.jpgWell my friends, as Cheryl over at Smitten noted this morning, Labor Day weekend has come and gone. While the unofficial end of summer is indeed a sad thing, I'm excited: Fall is my absolute favorite season of the year! It means a fresh start, cooler weather (thank goodness!) fresh apple cider, the return of boots, leggings, (not that I ever retired mine!) and other fall classics. It also means new fitness opportunities. Here are four I'm looking forward to:

    1. Exercising outdoors in decent weather
    I was getting a little tired of having to arrange my running schedule around the summer heat. Anybody else with me?

    2. Scenic bike rides
    I know, I totally could have biked in the summer, but for some reason, the idea of crunching colorful leaves with a pair of wheels is very tempting right now…

    3. New classes at the gym
    I love it when it's time for a new class schedule. At Crunch, they're offering Masala Bhangra, (I LOVE Bollywood tunes) a dance class based on the

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  • I recently had a baby and am trying to lose those last few pregnancy pounds. With a young child and a full-time job, I have little time for exercise. Luckily, there's another option: eating!

    New research suggests that there's a way to prevent this weight gain or even encourage weight loss-without dieting. The secret? Eat more fiber. Why? Researchers at Brigham Young University in Utah found that women who increased their fiber intake generally lost weight. Read more about the study below.

    In the meantime, try these 20 delicious fiber-rich recipes to help you lose weight. Or add more of these four foods to your diet to help you get your fill:

    Raspberries: 1 cup = 8 grams
    Eat more of them in Raspberry, Avocado & Mango Salad and 9 more delicious raspberry recipes.

    Chickpeas: 3/4 cup = 8 grams
    Enjoy these protein-packed beans in Middle Eastern Chickpea Platter (yum!) and more healthy chickpea recipes.

    Strawberries: 1 cup = 3 grams
    Pile them onto this healthier

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  • Many people looking to get into shape and lose weight choose walking as a way to do so. It makes sense: It is low-impact, pleasurable, and manageable for most fitness levels, making it far from intimidating. Further, it has been widely accepted that walking three times a week for 30 minutes each time can help bolster your cardiovascular health. But is walking really enough to get into good physical condition? Unfortunately, I would have to say no.

    Saying that walking is the only thing you need is like saying that gas is all your car needs to function properly. If you neglect the engine, don't put oil in it and don't inflate the tires, the car eventually will stop running properly. Walking is a great activity to incorporate into a healthy lifestyle, but it isn't the begin all and end all of being in great physical shape.

    If you haven't exercised regularly for a long time, walking is a good way to start getting back into a regimen. But to make it really work for you, remember

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  • I was at the coffee machine yesterday when my co-worker Carolyn asked me about the new sugar recommendation from the American Heart Association. Co-authored by EatingWell nutrition advisor Rachel K. Johnson, Ph.D., M.P.H., R.D., the recommendation says to reduce our intake of added sugars to help your heart and waistline. (Learn more about the difference between added sugar and natural sugar here.)

    As we talked, I doctored my coffee: first some milk, then sugar….wait, should I even add sugar to my coffee?

    Carolyn was thinking the same thing-she adds sugar to her coffee, and there's already so much sugar in soda and many packaged foods. We aren't the only ones eating too much sugar-a recent survey suggests that Americans consume 355 calories, or 22 teaspoons, of added sugar a day! And although there isn't a direct scientific link, it's likely that the weight gain in our population is related, in part, to our increased intake of added sugars. (Is high-fructose corn syrup the

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  • When I moved to Colorado years ago to be with the man that I eventually married, I found a new way of looking at exercise and being fit. I moved from Texas where often times it was too hot to exercise outside. The popular thing to do was to "go to lunch" or "go to dinner." In other words, socializing was centered around eating. People would go to the gym or run outdoors but that was usually separate from social interaction.

    Moving to the mountains in Colorado was different where all socializing is centered around exercise. It took some time to get used to. instead of going out to lunch, we hike up a mountain. I wasn't in shape physically in the beginning but what I learned first was that I liked to exercise even more because it revolved around talking and being with friends. A positive emotional experience became associated with exercise. In a sense, I became emotionally fit even before I became physically fit.

    I also learned to try new things. The day my car rolled into

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  • 4 ways to cut calories without sacrificing taste

    Don't fool yourself into thinking that all salads are healthy. There are many fat traps lurking at the salad bar-you just need to know how to avoid them! With a few simple swap outs, you can build a satisfying salad that won't derail your diet.

    Start with a healthy base
    A good rule of thumb when picking lettuce: the darker the leaf, the more nutritious. Swap out pale iceberg for vitamin-packed romaine, spinach or radicchio. Two other nutritional powerhouses are potassium-rich endive and red cabbage, which is loaded with phytonutrients.

    Load up on the right veggies
    Not all vegetables are created equal. Fill your plate with smart picks: carrots, peas and broccoli. A colorful mix will provide you with a variety of nutrients. Beware of anything drenched in oil, such as sun-dried tomatoes; instead opt for fresh tomatoes, an excellent source of lycopene.

    Pump up protein
    Protein is a must-have to keep you

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  • By Laurel House

    Does it sometimes seem like no matter how hard you work out, you just can't work off the weight? And worse than that- you have to work even harder just to maintain your same 5lbs too heavy state? As you age, your metabolism slows down, forcing you to labor more while you get less out of your workouts. But don't let that annoying reality get you down because we've found a few ways to labor less and get more. That's right, this Labor Day, lay off a little and still lose weight (at least burn off the extra BBQ and booze).

    Cindy Whitmarsh, an ExerciseTV trainer, has a few calorie singeing secrets that will up your exercise intensity without adding any extra time to your workout.

    Try Cindy's Less Is More Cardio Workout with a calorie monitoring pedometer to see just how many calories you can burn in the least amount of time.

    Cindy's Top 3 Tips for Increased Burn

    1. Multitasking Movements: Every step you take you are engaging more than

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  • To find more willpower when reserves run low, we consulted the guru we'd all love to have on speed dial: Jillian Michaels. (OK, we do have her on speed dial; she's now a contributing editor.) Channel her voice when you're flagging.

    Excuse "I have zero time to exercise!"

    Jillian says I feel your pain-my life is crazy, too. But good-for-you habits are the last thing that should go. If you don't take care of yourself, you'll have less energy to be that supportive person in your loved ones' lives. I tell working moms to ask for help. It used to take a village to raise kids; you can't do it on your own.

    Get a motivation makeover!

    Excuse "Who can afford a gym and fresh produce? Not me."

    Jillian says Commit to a $100 investment in 10 fitness DVDs and you'll have enough variety for six months at least. You can do a whole workout-sit-ups, jumping jacks, squats-without any equipment. And imagine the cost of taking diabetes meds for the rest of your life-much more than the

    Read More »from Help me, Jillian! Motivation tips from The Biggest Loser Trainer
  • Many beginning yoga students are drawn to yoga because they've heard it does wonders for a person's physique. Even though most serious practitioners eventually abandon their goals of changing flab to fab in favor of a more holistic approach to health, there's nothing wrong with targeting a specific muscle area you know is weak or tight. One of the hardest and most requested parts of the body to transform are the side waist or "love handles."

    Although there may not be a quick fix for yogis who are concerned with toning their "love handles," there are clear advantages to working this part of the body. The side waist muscles (also called the flank muscles), along with the front abdominal, lower back, and buttock muscles, are crucial in supporting and stabilizing the lower back and pelvis.

    This can be achieved through the practice of Trikonasana (Triangle Pose). If done correctly in Iyengar style, the line of the torso from the side waist to the armpit should be flat, not rounded up

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