Like many people do in the days leading up to January 1, I deliberately sat down with a journal and wrote out a list of goals I wanted to accomplish in the next 365 days. I covered all the biggies: finances, fitness, travel, relationships and even mental wellness. Also, like many people, I felt a bubbling confidence while scribbling away that made me feel like this year was going to be different in terms of actually achieving said goals.
Working out used to mean throwing on an old t-shirt and shorts and heading to a globo gym where you could anonymously sit on a recumbent bike for an hour. But times they are a-changin'. Ratty t-shirts are being replaced by stylish athleisure wear, and boutique fitness classes are giving regular gyms a run for their money. People want the close-knit community boutique gyms provide, and they're willing to pay triple the price of a regular gym to get it. But, calorie-burning-wise, are these trendy classes actually worth it?
Who wants to diet during the holidays? Thanksgiving, New Year's and every party in between revolves around food (well, okay, family, but food's a close second), so counting calories or carbs during these months feels like a task better suited to the Grinch. Still, no one wants to greet the New Year in pants two sizes too small, either.
Hey, so you know those flabby bits under your arms that wave in the wind every time you say goodbye? Those fleshy wings that convince you to purchase a matching sweater every time you buy a new tank top or sleeveless dress? Yeah, well, those aren't just the bane of your existence, they happen to the best of us ... even celebrities (please hold all shock, horror, and awe).
Some people will tell you that summer bodies are built only in gyms -- but we're here to tell you that those people simply lack imagination. The way we look at it, we're constantly burning calories. Standing in line for an hour to buy your first Balmain dress from H&M burns 94 calories*. Reading "The Girl on the Train" for 30 minutes? Torches 44 calories.
As I stand in the dark wings of the stage, I feel my nerves kick in. After months of skipping nights out with friends, turning down my favorite meals and logging countless hours in the gym, I only have ten seconds of undivided attention from the judges. As I muster up confidence, I hear my coach's voice in my head, "You deserve to be up there. Stand with pride. You earned this moment." Suddenly, I hear my name echoed throughout the auditorium and I feel my body begin to shake. Taking a deep breath, I puff up my chest, channel my inner goddess and step into the spotlight of the stage.
We're all about self-acceptance, but if we're being honest, it'd be nice to know how to lose body fat. Whether it's for health reasons or purely to feel more confident in a bikini, sometimes we're on a mission to lose body fat fast -- but it's not an easy task. There's an insane amount of information out there on how to reduce body fat, and it can be tough to weed through the fat-burning facts -- and myths.
So your bod is pretty fit -- but your butt? It's flat, flabby or generally un-fabulous. Luckily, yoga can help you nip your butt issues in the bud. Exercise and wellness guru Mandy Ingber shares fitness and mindfulness tips with the soft-bodied, stressed-out masses in her new book, "Yogalosophy: 28 Days to the Ultimate Mind-Body Makeover." Since nothing says mind-body balance like a well-toned tush (um, right?), Ingber shows us five yoga poses for getting a firmer butt. Your path to a pert posterior starts here.
Thanks to desk jobs, sky-high shoes and fitness classes gone awry, it seems like there's always some body part that's aching or out of whack. While it's tempting to find relief inside your well-stocked medicine cabinet, sometimes all your body needs is a little finessing, by way of some quality time on the yoga mat.
Butt workouts are one of the most worthwhile physical endeavors you can undertake. Not only does a toned butt help ensure that you aren't placing undue strain on your knees or back, but it leaves a lasting impression whenever you walk away.
Picture your butt in its current state. Now, picture your butt in its ideal state. If you're like most women, you're probably envisioning a butt that's tight and toned. But the journey from flat butt to perky, pert rear end can seem unachievable without the help of trainers who whip celebrities' derrieres into tip-top shape.
Let's talk about sex. Sometimes, especially as women, we have a rough time fulfilling our potential for pleasure. "It comes down to energy and inhibitions," says sex therapist and author, Dr. Jane Greer, PhD. "For women, inhibitions flow from feeling uncomfortable with our bodies." She says that insecurity is the primary reason why women struggle to enjoy sex. Luckily, there's an easy cure: Exercise.
Ah, the warmer weather we've been waiting for has finally arrived. Which means it's time to replace the arm exercise you were getting with the remote control (I think I'll miss you most of all, "Pretty Little Liars"), with actual arm exercises -- hand weights and all.
Thanks to the return of skin-baring trends like the crop top, the desire for killer abs is no longer dependent upon whether you're hitting the pool in a bikini or not. Yep, abs are back in a big way. Simone De La Rue, celebrity trainer (she works with stars like Anne Hathaway and Camila Alves McConaughey) and founder and creator of Body by Simone, is here to help us achieve the toned tummy of our dreams through her book Body by Simone: The 8-Week Total Body Makeover Plan.
Sometimes finding the motivation to work out on your own can be harder than the actual workout itself -- which is why many of us have come to rely on a fitness buddy to meet our fitness goals. But gym BFFs do so much more than motivate us to get our butt in gear -- they know us on a deep and personal level. Not only do they know our BMI, but they've heard all of our weird, grunt-y (should-only-be-reserved-for-the-bedroom) sounds we make when lifting weights.
Let's address the Ganesh (err, elephant) in the room. You wear yoga pants regularly. But you actually practice yoga...maybe...once or twice a month? For busy women everywhere -- no matter how much you love the calm feeling after an hour and a half of breathing, stretching, and focusing -- it's tough to squeeze in a yoga class as frequently as you'd like.