All Entries For stuff we love
For those of you avid gym-goers out there, you know how important it is to keep your gym bag stocked and ready to go! If you are anything like me, you also like to stay stylish, even while getting sweaty, which is why I designed my oGorgeous brand of bags, so that I can have a gym bag that is as pretty as a purse! I make sure to pack my bag full of the essentials so that I'm always ready for a workout, wherever I am. Let me share some of my gym bag must haves:
These really come in handy when you're lifting weights and want to avoid getting calluses. They're also great as you're developing grip strength.
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About six months ago, I moved from downtown Cincinnati to the rural mountains of Western North Carolina. I went from going out my front door and hitting the hot new restaurants to going out my front door and hitting the hiking trails. I've always liked hiking, but with so many trails, mountains, and places to explore surrounding my new home, I'm using the great outdoors as my personal grown-up playground far more often.
My hikes have all been a half day or shorter, so I haven't needed too much specialized equipment. However, I have accumulated a few items that have made hiking much more enjoyable for me. Today I'm sharing some of my favorites with you.
Water backpacks are a great way to haul your food and supplies on a hike while staying hydrated. This 50-ounce size is great for longer hikes, and there's a pocket to hold energy bars and your keys.
ExOfficio Women's Nomad Roll-Up Pant
Even if the day starts off sunny, you likely will need an extra layer or more coverage when you start your return trip. Roll-up pants are convenient and versatile--and more practical than the kind that zip off. (Who wants to risk losing a pants leg in the woods?)
Dakine Hip Pack
For shorter hikes, opt for a lumbar pack to stash a water bottle and all your necessities. These from Dakine are fashionable as well as functional. Read More ›
Can you believe that spring is finally here? (Officially, anyway.) Here in Cincinnati we've received a few little tastes of spring-like sunshine and temperatures over the past couple of weeks, but it's been enough to get all of us excited about the changing seasons. I can't wait to break out the grill, get my hands dirty with a new vegetable garden, and go for a run without wearing an extra 20 pounds of insulating gear. How about you?
To celebrate spring, I thought I'd share some of my favorite things right now, from new running shoes to my favorite protein powder to new apparel that supports your active, healthy lifestyle. Read More ›
One of my favorite times of day to run is in the early morning before the rest of the world wakes up. It’s quiet and gives me time to think before the craziness of my day begins. I prefer to run when the sun is already up, but at certain times of the year, that becomes more difficult. When I do head out in the dark, my first priority is safety. Although I never assume that cars can see me, I try to make myself as visible as possible.
I hear of too many runners, walkers and bikers out with no lights, no identification, wearing dark colors and expecting that everything will be fine and that cars will gladly move out of their way. Accidents happen all the time, but you can reduce the chances they will happen to you. Here are some of the products I recommend to help you stay safe and visible when exercising in the dark. Read More ›
At its very core, yoga is about connecting the mind and body. You can "do" yoga without any equipment at all. Even sitting and breathing mindfully as you quiet the mind is a form of yoga. That said, when you do a yoga DVD or take a class, there are a few items that can help you feel more comfortable.
Today I'm rounding up some of my favorites as both a certified yoga teacher and student!
Manduka PROlite Yoga Mat: Manduka mats have a lifetime guarantee. I've had mine for almost four years and it looks brand-new. If you plan to practice regularly, invest in a high-quality mat. Cheaper "sticky" mats tend to fall apart and shed yoga mat confetti all over the place. After wearing out two yoga mats during yoga teacher training, I treated myself to a sturdier mat as my reward for earning my certification. Manduka mats are lightweight yet sturdy--you won't need to layer a second mat under it as some people prefer to do with foam mats. (Plus they come in a variety of fun colors!)Read More ›
Editor's Note: We've asked SparkPeople member MOSTMOM1 to share her favorite fun fitness tools. Read on for gadgets that will turn any workout into playtime!
My husband calls me the Pied Piper of Fun. He rolls his eyes when he says this, but I take it as a compliment. I believe having fun is more important than people realize. For me, having fun usually makes me a nicer person to be around. Plus, it often means hanging out with friends, and that’s good for me, too. So, it only makes sense that I would look for ways to make my fitness fun. Here are seven fun things that keep me moving every day. Read More ›
Exercise is an important part of my life, not only because of my job, but because of what it does for me personally. Exercise helps me relieve stress, makes me feel good about myself, and since I've become a mom, it's one of the few things I do these days that’s all my own. I’ve blogged in the past about being a busy mom of three small children, and most of the time I put 110% of my effort toward my kids, leaving little for me. I know that’s not good (and something I need to work on), but one thing I do try to make time for almost daily is exercise.
Whether it means getting up early, squeezing in a few 10-minute workouts throughout the day or doing a quick video while they nap, exercise calms me and helps me get through a busy day without a (mommy) meltdown.
Everyone has the same number of hours in a day, so whether or not you exercise comes down to how you choose to spend your time. It’s not always easy, and just because I exercise regularly doesn’t mean I pop out of bed at 5 a.m., excited and energized to work out. I have to drag myself out of bed most days, and some days, my scheduled workout doesn’t happen. I do the best I can.
So if you’re a busy mom like me, how do you begin to find time for exercise? Here are a few suggestions that work for me. Read More ›
If you've been struggling with the "no eating between meals" rule, you're in luck: in recent years, that diet myth has been debunked. Snacks are important, especially when are active or trying to lose weight. Go too long without eating, and your blood sugar will drop. Your stomach will rumble. You'll get grouchy--and you'll turn into the cookie monster (or the chip monster or the "will eat the first thing I find" monster).
However, it's easy to fall into a snack rut. If you're tired of eating the same old snacks, you'll love today's "Stuff We Love" list: I'm sharing some new-to-you foods you might want to swap into your snack rotation this year.
I keep snacks in my purse and car at all times to ward off hunger-induced grouchiness and overeating. Believe me: I'm a mild-mannered yogini and health food lover when I'm fed regularly, but when I am starving, watch out! I get cranky and will eat anything in sight! Read More ›
Happy New Year!
If you're reading this, you're probably gearing up to make 2013 your healthiest, fittest year yet. Although weight loss takes a lot of old-fashioned hard work and basic knowledge, it never hurts to have a few extra tools in the box to help you out along your journey. Here are seven essential items for your ''weight-loss survival kit'' that will help you build a healthier life this year, one goal at a time.
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If you’ve seen enough infomercials in your time, it’s easy to get convinced that you need to buy the latest and greatest in exercise gadgets or gizmos in order to reach your fitness goals.
The truth is, there’s no need to spend a ton of money on fancy equipment or even a gym membership to get in a good workout. In fact, many great workout routines don’t need any equipment at all. But if you are looking to invest in a few pieces to help you get fit in 2013, there are a few, inexpensive items I’d recommend.
As a personal trainer, I actually train all of my clients at home using these six essential items (and they’re each cost less than $20). Read More ›
This holiday season was different from past years for me in that I actually finished all of my shopping early—almost two weeks ago actually. For once I'm relaxing and enjoying these last weeks of December without the holiday stress of finding and buying those last-minute gifts. But I know that others aren't quite as fortunate. Many of you are still part of the holiday rush, which is why I'm here to help with my own picks for the best fitness gifts for anyone on your list.
Don't panic: You still have a few days to shop before Christmas! The following fitness gifts are all available online and are ready to ship; most are readily available at national chains as well. But even if your shopping is done (lucky you!), you'll find plenty of fabulous ideas here for YOU. After all, you deserve a nice reward for everything you've achieved this year, right? Maybe you'll even get some holiday gift money or a year-end bonus that you can use to treat yourself to a fit gift (or two) to start the new year off right. Read More ›
This time of year, it seems like we're all spending more time in the kitchen. Whether you're baking cookies for a big family party or just making dinner on a Tuesday night, having the right tools makes cooking more enjoyable. Today I'm sharing eight kitchen tools you might want to add to your holiday wish list to make recipe prep and cooking a breeze!
Silpat Non-Stick Baking Mat
Non-stick silicone baking mats are great ways to cook items without any added fat. Whether you're baking cookies or roasting veggies, you can ensure your food doesn't stick without any added fat.
Multi-Purpose "Bench" Scraper/Chopper
A bench scraper is the perfect tool to speed up your prep time and keep your cutting board neat. Every time you grab your knife, collect the scraper as well. The straight edge lets you scoop up your chopped veggies without dulling the edge of your knife. The straight but not sharp edge makes this safe for new cooks and kids.
Do you have holidays on the brain? How about holiday shopping? You're not alone! I love thinking of new, personal and creative gifts to give to others. Usually it takes all the willpower I have to not give gifts early. I just get so excited! And OK, I won't lie…I don't mind receiving gifts from my own wish list either.
If you're looking for a small, but thoughtful gift for a friend or loved one (or even for yourself), I've rounded up a dozen of my favorite healthy products that won't break the bank (and will even fit into your stocking). Read More ›
Stress comes in infinite forms, and this time of year, it's hitting us on all sides. Be pro-active and take steps to reduce your stress level, integrating some of these products into your daily routine. Whether you give these to someone you love or treat yourself, we think you'll start to enjoy the holiday season a little more!
New Acupressure Roller Wood Foot Massager Stress Relief: We have thousands of nerve endings in the bottoms of the feet, so it's no wonder that a foot rub feels so good, especially at the end of a long day! When there's no one around (or no one willing around) to give your feet a rubdown, grab one of these and start rolling. Your feet thank you in advance.Read More ›
If you're looking to build a home gym, a stability ball is a great place to start! Check out this video for tips on how to use it.
Contigo 16-Ounce Double Wall Insulated Tumbler
This tumbler has a heavy-duty seal that prevents spills and keeps your hot drinks hot for hours. (I have one and use it nearly every day. Even three hours after pouring, my coffee is still toasty!)