Fitbie Burn fat in less time with fitness tips, weight loss plans, exercises, and healthy eating tips you need to get fit and have the body you want from Fitbie. diet and fitness weight tips nutrition tips exercise tips fitness plans exercise plans weight lifting cardio diet Copyright © 2014 Rodale Inc. "Fitbie" is a register trademark of Rodale, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Mon, 20 Oct 2014 19:16:49 -0400 Mon, 20 Oct 2014 19:16:49 -0400 Missy Elliot Is Almost Unrecognizable After Major Weight Loss (PHOTO) Blog entry Mon, 20 Oct 2014 15:05:47 -0400 Fitbie
Missy Elliot

Missy Elliot has been workin' it, and it shows. The "Work It" singer showed off a much slimmer figure performing at Alexander Wang's H&M Collection launch in New York City this past week. The rapper took to Twitter to post a photo of her slimmed-down bod along with the caption "Just got off stage thanks @ALEXANDERWANGNY and @hmusa for having me perform I enjoyed [muah!]"

By the looks of that "You can't workout with us" hat (which we LOVE!) the 43-year-old songstress knows she looks good. Sources say that Elliot's dropped a whopping 70 pounds

Elliot revealed in 2011 that she was battling Graves' disease, an autoimmune illness that affects the thyroid. After a year on medication and radiation treatments, she felt drastically better. The singer revealed to People that under her doctor's supervision, she was no longer taking medication and was completely managing the condition through diet and exercise. Seems to us that her healthy routine has made a major impact!

Haven't gotten your dose of Missy in a while? You can thank us later:

UP NEXT: 8 TV Characters Who Would Make the Best Fitness Buddies EVER

Emily Abbate
Fitbie Find: Brooks Running Pants Blog entry Sat, 18 Oct 2014 10:00:07 -0400 Fitbie

Now that the fall is here, it's time to shelf those shorts and opt for pants during your outdoor workouts. Today's #SaturdaySaver keeps that in mind, with two great deals from Brooks on pants, the Women's Vapor Dry 2 Pant and the Glycerin Pant III

Both styles are semi-fitted, and great for running. While the Vapor Dry 2 features warmer fleecedfabric on the back for greater comfort and an invisible back zip pocket to hold keys, gels, and other essentials, the Glycerin Pant III boasts flatlock chafe-resistant seams and an asymmetric, wide waistband with drop pocket. Hello, storage!

Was: $75
Now: Both $37

UP NEXT: Why You Don't Really Understand Until You Train for a Race (VIDEO)

Emily Abbate
The Workout Playlist That'll Push You to Your Limits (LISTEN) Blog entry Fri, 17 Oct 2014 10:00:08 -0400 Fitbie
Flex Pilates

Every week Fitbie is featuring rad playlists from rad fitness instructors. This week Lanae Rhodes, co-director of FlexBarre at Flex Studios, shares hers with us. 

"Music plays such a vital role in your workout -- it really can make or break a class. Music not only helps me as a teacher to keep the pace of a class, but motivates my students to keep pushing and working, even when they desperately want to give up," says Rhodes. "Every single move in a FlexBarre class is done to the beat, so it’s important to pick songs with a strong down beat so that the clients can find the pace and rhythm."

Rhodes also points out that at times, music can also be a helpful distraction. "It’s nice to have a song that you recognize to push you through that extra burn," she says. "That’s why I always try throw in a few songs that are more well known, but change it up by finding a killer remixed version. My last song of the class has to have the most driving force, because I am going to push you to your limit in that last few minutes so you leave on a major endorphin high!"

UP NEXT: The Playlist That'll Amp Up Spin Class (LISTEN) 

Emily Abbate
What You Don't Really Understand Until You Train for a Race (VIDEO) Blog entry Thu, 16 Oct 2014 17:39:37 -0400 Fitbie
New York Marathon

You can talk to people who have run marathons before. You can listen to how they say that life "totally changes" once you commit yourself to a training program. The truth? You don't fully understand just how much it really does until you go through it yourself. It goes a little something like this: Wake up every morning, sleep my alarm, roll over and turn a light on, get out of bed, lace up my sneakers. Life feels like run, eat, work, eat, sleep, repeat. See what's missing from that equation? Friends. Family. Extra curriculars, if you will. 

With just under three weeks until race day, I'm anxious. I'm nervous. I've done the long run. I've conquered the 22 miles and the taper has officially arrived. But if it wasn't for the constant support of my friends and family, my vision of the finish line on November 2 wouldn't seem so clear. Sure, I miss late night outings, lingering in restaurants over desserts and one-too-many glasses of wine for hours at a time. (I also miss sleeping in on the weekends.) Instead, I've traded those outings for at-home dinners. For weekend coffee dates. For text messages and phone conversations when I have to squeeze in a post-work run instead of grab a bite and laugh over what ridiculous thing Kim Kardashian tweeted last.

But you know what? When we make goals that are great, goals that are worthy -- the sacrifices don't feel like sacrifies. They feel necessary. It's all necessary, and it's all coming down to one day: 

New Fit video page

Continue to follow along with Emily's journey to the New York City Marathon for expert tips on race training, whether you're gearing up for a 5K, 10K, half-marathon, or beyond. Miss the first installment? Check out Emily's backstory about losing 70 pounds and what inspired her to tackle the marathon distance in the first place. 

UP NEXT: 10 Random Things Runners Ponder While Pounding Pavement

Emily Abbate
Fitbie Find: Lululemon Two Times A Yogi Bag Blog entry Thu, 16 Oct 2014 16:38:51 -0400 Fitbie
Lululemon Two Times a Yogi Bag

There are few things women love more than carryall bags that fit a ton of stuff. Actually, we stand corrected: There are few things women love more than a well-priced carryall bag. Say hello to this week's #FitbieFind: the Two Times A Yogi Bag from Lululemon.

First things first: Designer purses will cost you at least $150. The downside of a designer purse for an active fashionista like yourself? It's nowhere near big enough to carry all your workout gear. That, and most of the time you're scared to put your sweaty threads anywhere near a designer label. With the Two Times a Yogi Bag, you're in luck. 

More from Fitbie: The Secret to Wearing Your Gym Clothes All Day Long

Say goodbye to carrying around three bags all day long. (Thank, goodness.) Including a separate ventilated wet/dry compartment and an exterior padded pocket that fits a 15'' laptop -- this bag has spots for everything. Plus, it super minimalistic and chic. 

What else we love:
• Yoga mat stores easily across middle with small strap to keep it secure
• Tested to hold up to 50 pounds
• Comes in two great colors
• Durable polyurethane finish makes it easy to clean

The Details: Two Times A Yogi Bag, $128,

UP NEXT: 3 Yoga Poses for Perfect Posture

Emily Abbate
Michelle Obama 'Turnip For What' Vine Will Make You LOL (VIDEO) Blog entry Wed, 15 Oct 2014 17:00:50 -0400 Fitbie
Michelle Obama 'Turnip for What'

Michelle Obama's #AskTheFirstLady Vine campaign invites questions about healthy eating, home cooking, gardening, and all things related to her oh-so-fab Let's Move! campaign to end childhood obesity. We've enjoyed hearing about exercise and what her favorite veggies are (we love sweet potatoes, too!), but we can't get enough of her spoof on everyone's favorite get-pumped anthem, "Turn Down For What."  

It turns out that the First Lady is on to something: according to Michele McRae, certified nutritionist at Rainbow Light, turnips are the unsung hero of the vegetable garden. Here are her top three reasons to load up on this often overlooked veggie:

1. They're high nutrition. At only 51 calories per cup (cooked and mashed), turnips are an excellent source of vitamin C, clocking in at nearly 1/3 of the daily recommendation. They also provide B vitamins, calcium, potassium, and other trace minerals. 

2. They may protect against certain types of cancer. "As part of the cruciferous family of vegetables, turnips are antioxidant-rich and contain phytonutrients called indoles that may be protective," said McRae. "One recent study published in the International Journal of Oncology found that a type of indole compound found in turnips -- brassinin -- killed human colon cancer cells."

3. They're heart healthy and immune boosting. "Inflammation impairs our natural immune response and is implicated in almost all chronic disease, including heart disease," she added. "Turnip greens provide omega-3s and vitamin K, which help regulate the body's response to inflammation." 

Looking for inspiration? Get started with this turnip-rich recipe from Messy Baker

Crispy Root Vegetable Chips
(makes 4 snack servings)

1 pound root vegetables (potatoes, sweet potatoes, parsnips, turnips, taro, carrots, and/or beets)
3 tablespoons vegetable oil
4 teaspoons ras el hanout (available at Middle Eastern specialty shops)
1 teaspoon fine sea salt

1. Preheat the oven to 375°F. If your oven has a convection setting, use it and adjust the temperature accordingly. Line 3 baking sheets with parchment paper.

2. Wash the root vegetables. Leave the skin on or peel at your discretion. I leave the skin on for white potatoes but peel sweet potatoes. Slice the vegetables as thinly as you can. However, it's more important to be uniform than thin so that the chips bake evenly. Aim for 1⁄16" thick, but do not cut thicker than 1/8".

3. Place the slices on paper towels and blot dry. Arrange in a single layer on the baking sheets. Different vegetables bake at di!erent rates, so if you are using a mix, arrange them 1 vegetable per pan.

4. In a small bowl, whisk together the oil, ras el hanout, and salt. Brush on the chips with a pastry brush. Flip the vegetables over and brush the oil mixture on the other side.

5. Bake for 10 minutes for 1/16" slices or 15 minutes for thicker slices. Remove the baking sheets from the oven, flip the chips over, and return the chips to a different rack for even cooking. Continue baking for 5 to 20 minutes, depending on how thick the chips are and what vegetable you're roasting. The chips are ready when they are golden and the edges curl or ruffle. The thinner the chip, the more pronounced the ruffle. (Keep an eye on the smaller chips because they cook faster.)

6. Transfer the chips to a layer of paper towels to cool. Eat as is, or with your favorite dipping sauce. 

UP NEXT: Recipe: Dill Zucchini Fritters With Lemon Tzatziki 

8 TV Characters Who Would Make the Best Fitness Buddies EVER Blog entry Wed, 15 Oct 2014 14:27:59 -0400 Fitbie
Hannah Horvath from Girls

We've all been there: mid-workout, exhausted, wishing we had a friend around to give us an extra push on our last set of tricep dips. But you know what would be even better? Sharing that morning gym trip with one of our favorite TV stars. Ever contemplate what it'd be like to lift weights with Olivia Benson or shoot hoops with Daniel Grayson (hottie alert!)? Check out our list of 8 TV characters who would make the best fitness buddies EVER

Annalise Keating, How to Get Away with Murder
There's no way this woman would let you stop your workout until it's done. Through. Court adjourned. 

More from Fitbie: 10 Signs You're in Love With Your Workout Class Instructor

Daniel Grayson, Revenge
Have you SEEN this man? Squats, pullups, lunges, kettlebell swings—you name it, and we are on board if he's in the same room and joining in on the strength-training session. 


Francis Underwood, House of Cards
This hard-hitter knows a thing or two about logging some mileage, both on the rowing machine in his basement and running around the neighborhood. Too tired to get in that workout? Underwood's always tired. Get over yourself. 

Olivia Benson, Law & Order: Special Victims Unit
Talk about #fitspiration: Olivia has fast-twitch muscle fibers that help her jump out of cars and start sprinting to catch bad guys on the run. 

More from Fitbie: 11 Stages of Being Sore After a Workout

Sophia Burset, Orange is the New Black
Okay, so we're not exactly sure how much working out would happen with her in tow, but you'd get some fashion advice, and maybe a new hairstyle.

Don Draper, Mad Men
He's easy on the eyes, and you could sip Old Fashioneds together on your off days.

Michonne, The Walking Dead
If she can stay motivated to do one-armed pushups during a zombie apocalypse, then she could definitely help you get your butt in gear to hit the gym. 

Hannah Horvath, Girls
Someone who complains more than you at the sight of dumbbells. Plus: Hello, laugh central!

UP NEXT: 8 Song Titles That Perfectly Describe Your Workout

Emily Abbate
3 Yoga Poses for Perfect Posture Blog entry Mon, 20 Oct 2014 11:28:58 -0400 Fitbie
Woman doing bridge pose

You’d have to be living under a rock to miss the extensive news coverage of the fact that sitting is bad for your health. But even at the most basic level, it seems obvious that sitting hunched over a computer all day can lead to less than perfect posture.  

More from Fitbie: 10 Contorted Yoga Poses You Need to See to Believe

A new study, focused on scoliosis patients, shows that performing a single yoga pose for 90 seconds a few times a week could reduce curvature of the spine -- and overall posture and comfort -- in as little as three months. And for a population where treatments include surgery and back braces, thankfully, a little side plank did the trick to the tune of a 32 percent improvement. But even if scoliosis isn't on your radar, it's important to remember the value yoga can contribute to posture and back pain in even the healthiest among us.

"The side plank is a great exercise and should be used in most exercise programs," said Dr. Sean Wells, OCS, ATC/L, CSCS fitness expert at BistroMD. "If you have a chronic feeling of tightness in your upper back or sharp pains between your shoulder blades, this can be caused by sitting in front of a computer for too long, poor posture, or from too-intense overhead workouts at the gym."

Posture not quite pageant-ready? Straighten up with three of Dr. Wells’ favorite yoga poses:

1. Plow pose: Extending the spine in plow pose alleviates unwanted mobility and prevents flexing.

2. Child's pose: One of the easiest poses in yoga, child's pose is great for stretching out the lower back and can actually help relax the entire body.

3. Bridge pose: This pose is great for strengthening, and you’ll feel the muscles in your lower back getting stronger with bridge. Bonus: it opens up the lungs and chest for better breathing and all around relaxation.

UP NEXT: The Benefits of Prenatal Yoga

'Runner's World' Training Tips for Your Best Race Ever (VIDEO) Blog entry Thu, 16 Oct 2014 17:38:23 -0400 Fitbie
Emily Abbate

I'm not perfect. Heck, no runner, daughter, sister, mother, [insert descriptor of your choice here], is. Which is why when someone pointed out that my running form was a bit off, meaning that I typically run with my elbows tilted upward, I knew I needed to get some help. That's where Tish Hamilton, Executive Editor of Runner's World, comes in.

More from Fitbie: Just 5 Minutes of Running a Day Can Change Your Life

I recently had the pleasure of catching up with Tish here at our offices, and asked her a slew of training questions ranging from how to find the right footwear (socks, too!) and how long a person should be a running before signing up for a road race to yes, if my awkward running form really presented a problem. I'll let you in on a secret: Some of the best runners in the world have not-the-best form, too. 

To each her own. 

New Fit video page

Continue to follow along with Emily's journey to the New York City Marathon for expert tips on race training, whether you're gearing up for a 5K, 10K, half-marathon, or beyond. Miss the first installment? Check out Emily's backstory about losing 70 pounds and what inspired her to tackle the marathon distance in the first place. 

UP NEXT: 10 Random Things Runners Ponder While Pounding Pavement

Emily Abbate
Runner and Writer Alex Hutchinson Debunks a Common Running Myth Blog entry Mon, 13 Oct 2014 16:50:52 -0400 Fitbie
Alex Hutchinson

Alex Hutchinson is a man of many talents. He holds a PhD in physics from the University of Cambridge, once worked as a researcher for the National Security Agency, and competed as a middle- and long-distance runner for the Canadian national team for more than 10 years (we're winded just thinking about it!).

More from Fitbie: Pro Runner Lauren Fleshman Says Marathons Aren't Everything 

These days, Hutchinson spends most of his time as a science journalist, writing the Fast Lane column and Sweat Science blog at Runner's World.

We recently caught up with today's #MondayMotivation, where he shared his scientific findings about injury prevention, how to recover after a run, and the importance of setting realistic fitness goals.
Your book Which Comes First, Cardio or Weights? Fitness Myths, Training Truths, and Other Surprising Discoveries from the Science of Exercise debunks common running myths. What do you think is the most common one? Any that you think even runners might believe?
There's a long list of running myths that stick around no matter how often they're debunked. The one that frustrates me most is the idea that running will ruin your knees. Lots of studies have examined this question, following runners and non-runners for decades, and runners are no more likely to get osteoarthritis than non-runners. If anything, they're less likely to have joint problems, because running helps keep them slimmer, which puts less load on joints.

What's the best advice you can offer for beginner runners?
Remember that you always tend to overestimate what you can achieve in the short term, and underestimate what you can achieve in the long term. For beginner runners, this means that people tend to get enthusiastic and increase their training too quickly -- and then, predictably, get injured and discouraged. The classic example is your friends are signing up for a 10K in six weeks, and you decide to tag along instead of working towards a timeline that's more realistic for you. If you start slowly -- that means mixing walking and running initially, and gradually increasing -- then the progress you can make in a year (not a month) is amazing.
What's the biggest misconception about runners? 
I think people often assume that dedicated runners are humorless health fanatics. Most of the runners I know see running as a fun part of their lives that makes them happier overall.

More from Fitbie: 5 Running Myths BUSTED

When did you start running? Why did you start?
My earliest memory of running goes back to kindergarten, and I started running cross-country races in elementary school. I started running more regularly in high school, and that's when I began the transition from running for competition to running for pleasure. I was lucky that I happened to be good at running, which gave me a good incentive to start -- but these days, the reasons I run have little to do with competition. 

What was the biggest challenge you've faced as a runner, and how did you overcome it? 
Like many runners, I've struggled with injuries at times. The hardest to deal with was a stress fracture in my sacrum three months before the 2004 Olympic Trials, which I'd spent four years preparing for. With injuries like stress fractures, you can't "negotiate" with them -- your body has the final word. That's a lesson that we all have to learn at some point. Since then, I've been a little more responsive to my body's signals, and as a result haven't had much trouble with injuries.
To date, how many races have you completed?
I've raced pretty much every distance from 100 meters to the marathon, and I've long since lost count of how many. Certainly a few hundred. My first marathon was last year -- it remains to be determined whether I'll do another one. It was hard!
How do you find the motivation to keep going during a race? 
The truth is that racing well is as much mental as it is physical. We all struggle with trying to keep going when it gets hard. I focus on remembering the training that I did -- and reminding myself how short the race is in the grand scheme of things. I also know how good it feels to finish a race knowing that you gave everything, so I try to make sure I'll cross the line with no regrets.

More from Fitbie: 80 Thoughts Every Woman Has While Running a Half-Marathon
Stretching: Before and/or after you run, or not at all?
Personally, I don't do any static stretching. I haven't seen any evidence that convinces me I'm missing out on any benefits by not stretching. That said, I have lots of friends who swear by it, so I keep an open mind about it. One thing I've learned over the years is that the absence of evidence (i.e. no one has proven that stretching is helpful) isn't the same as evidence of absence (i.e. no one has proven that it isn't helpful, either!).
What's the best way to recover after a hard run?
The two most important factors are pretty boring, I'm afraid. The first is that you have to be physically prepared before you start the run. A hard 60-minute run will be easy to recover from if you did a hard 55-minute run the week before, a 50-minute run two weeks before, and so on. It will be very hard to recover from if you haven't run more than 30 minutes in the last month.

The second factor is rest. After a hard run, your body needs time before you challenge it again. Depending on what level of training you're used to, that might mean a day of complete rest the next day, or a day of light jogging, or a day of cross-training like swimming or biking. Whatever it takes for you personally, you need to allow your body to rebuild after a hard workout.

What do you eat the night before and morning of a big race?
For most races I do, I don't make any big changes in my diet before a race. I just focus on having a healthy meal with a reasonable amount of carbohydrate, protein, and fat. For example, I'd be happy with a nice piece of salmon with some rice, and a big salad with spinach, avocado, green beans, and whatever else I have on hand. Once you get up to marathon distance (which I've only done once), then you have to pay more attention to really loading up your carbohydrate stores, which I would do by increasing the proportion of rice or pasta or whatever on my plate, and also by sipping some sports drink throughout the day.

On the morning of a race, it depends how early the race is. I'll generally stick to foods that are familiar and easily digestible -- some oatmeal, toast or a bagel, a banana -- and try to finish an hour or more before the race.

What did you eat for breakfast today? 
This morning I had a bowl of muesli (raw oats, a wide variety of nuts and seeds) with blueberries, strawberries, banana, yoghurt, and milk. I have that most mornings. Then I had a couple of sourdough-oatmeal pancakes left over from the previous morning with peanut butter and banana. 
What are 3 songs on your workout playlist that are your guilty pleasure?
I'm pretty old-school, in that I don't listen to music while exercising. That's partly because I like to let my thoughts wander freely, and partly because I've never found earbuds that fit my ears comfortably!

More from Fitbie: The Playlist That'll Help You Push Through Your Workout 
What's your typical workout routine like?
These days, I run five or six days a week. That includes one tempo run, one interval workout, and several easy runs. I also rock climb for a few hours once a week, and tack on some body-weight resistance exercise at the end of the session. And I try to do one other body-weight resistance session after a run each week, though that one sometimes slips through the cracks.
What's your most popular content on social media?
To honest, I'm not very good at predicting which of my posts will get lots of response and which won't. And I try not think too much about it, because I don't want to get drawn into that vortex where you're just chasing hits instead of pursuing things you find interesting. That said, I've found posts that offer specific workout suggestions are popular, as are posts about the health benefits of different kinds of exercise.
How do you use social media to help others? 
I initially used social media platforms like Twitter and Facebook as a "broadcast" mechanism -- that is, I mainly used them to spread the word about articles I'd written. These days, I find it's much more interactive. When I blog about a topic, I'll hear back via social media about the further questions people have, and the points they disagree with or find unclear. It's a bit of a clichÈ, but that dialogue helps me write better articles, and I think it helps keep readers interested and engaged as they pursue their own goals.

Follow Hutchinson on Twitter and Facebook.

Are you a nutritionist, food blogger, or fitness expert with a large social media following? Email us at or Tweet us @Fitbie using the hashtag #MondayMotivation to be featured as our next Fitbie Spotlight.

UP NEXT: 15 Common Running Terms and What They Mean

Kayda Norman
Kelly Osbourne Reveals How She Feels About Her Bikini Body (PHOTO) Blog entry Mon, 13 Oct 2014 12:03:57 -0400 Fitbie
Kelly Osbourne

If you've got it, flaunt it! Kelly Osbourne took in some rays over the weekend in Sydney, and then took to Instagram to show off her bikini bod. We can't help but go ga-ga about what she had to say about all that hard work. The Fashion Police co-host shed 70 pounds over the past few years by changing up her eating strategy and exercising daily.


Thank you @ms_go_lightly for taking this pic its such a confidence booster! I don't give fuck I look good! #nofilter

View on Instagram

Osbourne captioned the photo: "Thank you @ms_go_lightly for taking this pic its such a confidence booster! I don't give fuck I look good! #nofilter"

Now THAT is an attitude we can get on board with! Osbourne told Shape that she stays motivated by getting her friends to join her for workout classes. Looking to get your rear in gear? These motivational quotes should give you that extra oomph to lace up your sneakers and get out the door. 

UP NEXT: 'Dancing With the Stars': 20 Contestants Who've Slimmed Down

Emily Abbate
Fitbie Find: New Balance Pink Ribbon Shockingly Unshocking Bra Blog entry Sat, 11 Oct 2014 10:00:08 -0400 Fitbie
sports bra

October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, and we can't help but love that a bunch of our favorite brands are teaming up to raise money for breast cancer research. Buying fun fitness gear and donating to a good cause? Hello, no-brainer. Which is why today's #SaturdaySaver, the Pink Ribbon Shockingly Unshocking Bra from New Balance's Lace Up for the Cure Collection, is absolute perfection. 

First, about the cause: New Balance contributes 5 percent of the MSRP of each product sold from the New Balance Lace Up for the Cure Collection to Susan G. Komen, with a guaranteed minimum donation of $500,000 each year in support of their mission of finding a cure for breast cancer. 

And now, about the bra: Made with moisture-wicking stabilizer fabric, this piece offers high-impact support, molded cups for shaping and modesty, adjustable front straps and back closure for custom fit, and breathable mesh panels to keep you cool. Plus, it comes in a range of sizes from including 32 to 34 C, 32 to 44 D, and 32 to 44 DD.

Was: $47.99
Now: $35.99

UP NEXT: 19 Fun Fitness Events for Breast Cancer Awareness

Emily Abbate
19 WTF Terms You'll See in the Health Food Store Blog entry Fri, 10 Oct 2014 14:38:40 -0400 Fitbie
Confused grocery shopping

There's no two-ways about it: Health food stores can be super intimidating places. Not just Whole Foods or Fairway, but the small mom and pop ones, too. You walk in feeling excited about all the health conscious, trendy options ahead, and are then immediately bombarded with a sea of words and ingredients that most humans couldn't pronounce even if there was some sort of cash reward for doing so. 

You know exactly what we're talking about. Locavore? Resveratrol? Freekeh?! Yeah, you haven't felt this lost since that whole episode back in second grade when you lost your mom in Macy's.

Looking for a laugh? Check out these 19 ridiculous-sounding words found at the health food store

1. Freekeh
Pronounced “free-kah"
What it sounds like: Things are about to get nasty nasty. Or as the '90s supergroup Silk would sing, "I wanna get freekeh with you." 
What it really means: A cereal food made from green wheat that goes through a roasting process in its production. Super popular in Middle Eastern cooking.

2. Salba
Pronounced "Sal-bah"
What it sounds like: Simba's long-lost sister, she lives!
What it really means: More commonly known as chia seed, is a seed ferived from the Salvia hispanica plant. 

3. Farina
Pronounced "fah-ree-nah"
What it sounds like: Ballerina? Your friend Gina? A more pleasant version of a fart. 
What it really means: Cereal grains usually served warm, commonly referred to as Cream of Wheat or Malt-O-Meal. 

4. Groats
Pronounced "grow-tz" 
What it sounds like: Something that happens to your body when you eat way too many cheese fries. 
What it really means: The hulled kernals of various cereal grains such as wheat, oat, and rye. Super rich in fiber, and hard to chew. 

5. Millet
Pronounced "mill-et"
What it sounds like: What happens when someone accidentally gets a haircut that could be a mullet, but is just a few inches short. 
What it really means: A group of highly variable small-seeded grasses, widely grown around the world as cereal crops or grains for both human food and fodder. 

6. Sago
Pronounced "sah-go"
What it sounds like: The mushy bits leftover in your cereal bowl when you just couldn't finish your morning meal fast enough. 
What it really means: A starch extracted in the spongy centre, or pith, of various tropical palm stems. Commonly made into sago flour. 

More from Fitbie: 68 Thoughts You Have When Grocery Shopping on a Diet

7. Flax
Pronounced "flahks"
What it sounds like: The horrible odor in the air when someone lets one rip. 
What it really means: An herb that comes from the flax plant, most commonly used in its ground and oil form. Most people use flax for its high-fiber content: one tablespoon of flax contains about 8 grams.

8. Locavore
Pronounced "low-cah-vore"
What it sounds like: A crazy person with a shopping addiction.
What it really means: A person interested in eating food that is locally produced, not moved long distances to market. 

9. Quark
Pronounced "kwark"
What it sounds like: The noise a duck makes when it's really, really angry. 
What it really means: A fresh dairy product made by warming soured milk until the desired degree of coagulation (denaturation, curdling) of milk proteins is met, and then straining.

10. Bupleurum
Pronounced "bew-ploor-um"
What is sounds like: A series of uncontrollable belches. 
What it really means: An herb commonly used in traditional Chinese medicine that helps cleanse the kidneys. 

11. Resveratrol
Pronounced "rez-vir-uh-trol"
What it sounds like: A
What it really means: A type of natural phenol produced by several plants in response to injury or when the plant is under attack by pathogens such as bacteria or fungi. Commonly found in the skin of grapes and blueberries. 

12. Achacha
Pronounced "ah-cha-cha"
What it sounds like: Bless you! 
What it really means: A highly prized tropical fruit traditionally grown in Bolivia and more recently, Australia.  

13. Shirataki Noodles
Pronounced "sheer-ah-talk-ee" noodles 
What it sounds like: Someone's about to lay the smack down on your backside. 
What it really means: Very low carbohydrate, low calorie, thin, translucent, gelatinous traditional Japanese noodles made from devil's tongue yam. 

More from Fitbie8 Reasons You're Still Hungry -- Even After You Just Ate! 

14. Lupin
Pronounced "loo-pin"
What it sounds like: An itch you have on your back that you can't reach.
What it really means: The seeds from lupin plants can be used in food and ground to make lupin flour, which is commonly found in gluten-free products.  

15. Carrageenan
Pronounced "care-a-ghee-nan"
What it sounds like: We just can't get this visual of Nancy Kerrigan out of our heads. 
What it really means: Polysaccharides that are extracted from red edible seaweeds. They are widely used in the food industry, for their thickening and stabilizing properties

16. Teff
Pronounced like Jeff, with a "T"
What it sounds like: An argument with your bestie. 
What it really means: A fine grain -- roughly the size of a poppy seed -- that comes in a variety of colors, from white and red to dark brown.

17. Castoreum
Pronounced "cast-or-ee-um"
What it sounds like: A place where casts go after they're removed from limbs. 
What it really means: A food additive made from the anal secretion beavers use to mark their territories, which smells like vanilla. (WE ARE EATING THIS!?) 

18. Rennet
Pronounced "ren-net"
What it sounds like: A tapenade perfect for topping sliced Italian bread. 
What it really means: A complex of enzymes produced in stomachs of ruminant mammals which is used in the production of most cheeses. 

19. Inulin
Pronounced "in-ooh-lin" 
What it sounds like: Medication one receives when they feel too overwhelmed to walk into the health food store. 
What it really means: A natural storage carbohydrate present in more than 36,000 species of plants, including wheat, onion, bananas, garlic, asparagus, and chicory.

UP NEXT: 20 Innocent Fitness Terms That Sound NSFW 

Emily Abbate
The Playlist That'll Help You Avoid a Boring Workout Blog entry Fri, 10 Oct 2014 13:30:53 -0400 Fitbie
Workout Class

Every week Fitbie is featuring rad playlists from rad fitness instructors. This week, trainer Le Jon Guillory shares his with us. 

"When working out, music plays a big role in my motivation," says Guillory. "It puts me in the mental place I need to enter in order to put any nagging problems aside for 20 to 40 minutes and just concentrate on getting in a good sweat session."

UP NEXT: The Playlist That'll Amp Up Spin Class

Emily Abbate
Bethenny Frankel Gets Real About Setting Healthy Goals Blog entry Fri, 10 Oct 2014 10:31:26 -0400 Fitbie
Bethenny Frankel

Just when you thought that she may be taking a step back from the spotlight, Bethenny Frankel is back and reportedly returning to The Real Housewives of New York City. For the show's seventh season, producers allegedly offered the Skinnygirl herself more than $1 million after ratings fell in recent years. 

Exciting? Hey, the reality star-turned-talk show host knows a thing or two about good television, but that's not all. She also knows a thing or two about staying fit and fueling your body right.

We recently had a chance to sit down with Frankel at Flywheel here in New York City to chat about eating right and sticking to an exercise routine. Her biggest advice to women looking to lose weight and keep it off? Not to be so hard on themselves.

More from Fitbie: 8 Naughty Celebrity Diet & Exercise Confessions

"I think women beat themselves up and they binge and say 'I was bad.' You're not bad if you ate, you're not good if you didn't ... [what's important is] you can't really let it go weeks and weeks," said Frankel. "It should just be the type of thing where if you ate something that made you feel a little gross, the next day you say 'I'm gonna clean it up a little.' ... It's checks and balances all the time."

According to Frankel, getting out and doing something is the first step to getting back on track after a binge. Her get-active tip? Find activities that you enjoy and stick with them. A self-proclaimed fan of walking on the beach and using nights out dancing with her girlfriends as cardio, Frankel says that a good workout doesn't necessarily need to be structured. "I just like it to be something that you enjoy, something that gives you joy." 

The reality star swears by the mantra that what you eat is equally as important, if not moreso, than the activity you incorporate, and manages to keep hunger pangs under control by snacking healthy. Her favorite go-tos include her Skinnygirl Tasty Nutrition Bars (available in Banana Oatmeal Dark Chocolate, Dark Chocolate Multigrain Pretzel and Chocolate Peanut Butter with Sea Salt), as well as pretzel crisps, shaved parmesan cheese and crackers, peanut butter on whole grain toast, or even soup. 

We love Frankel's don't-beat-yourself-up attitude. Looking for a little motivation to get back on the right track? Check out these helpful Fitbie links:

3 Breakfasts to Get Back On Track After a Big Splurge

20 Mindless Portion Control Tips

Quick Fixes for Binge Eating

UP NEXT: Jennifer Hudson Shares Her Diet Secret for Success

Emily Abbate
Fitbie Find: Brooks Nightlife Essential Vest III Blog entry Thu, 09 Oct 2014 14:51:26 -0400 Fitbie
Brooks Vest

Fall is here and marathon season is in full swing. While this time usually means pumpkins, bonfires and sweaters, it also means that it will soon be much darker much longer in the mornings and evenings. According to a recent Brooks survey, 42 percent of runners prefer to head out for their run before the sun even rises, which means that there's a huge need for the right noticeable running gear. That's where their new line of Nightlife gear, enabling runners to be more visible as they long early morning and late night hours, comes in. And that's where this week's #FitbieFind, the Brooks Nightlife Essential Vest III comes from. 

With strategically placed contrast fabrics, retroflective detail, and active lighing to heavily increase not just visibility, but also recognition, the vest is the perfect companion for runners in the fall and winter. Plus, it's lightweight but still keeps you warm when the early morning temperature have you shivering in your sneakers. 

What else we love:
• Zipper pockets for keys, phone, etc.
• Back pleat for more flattering fit
• Available in two fun colors

UP NEXT: 80 Thoughts Every Woman Has Running a Half-Marathon

Emily Abbate
Jennifer Hudson Shares Her Diet Secret for Success Blog entry Wed, 08 Oct 2014 16:36:59 -0400 Fitbie
Jennifer Hudson

There's no denying that the spotlight is on Jennifer Hudson and rightly so. Not only is she an uber talented singer and an Oscar-winning actress, but have you SEEN her? Girlfriend is in uh-mazing shape!

Hudson recently dished about her new album JHUD, which she calls her most personal work, to Yahoo along with the secret to her rockin' figure. So what exactly does she attribute those slammin' curves to? Hudson attributes her dieting success to portion control.  

More from Fitbie: 10 All-You-Can-Eat Foods

"I throw the pancakes across the room! I don't let the food intimidate me," says Hudson. "If it's too much, I just get rid of it, but I make sure to watch what I put in my body. And I make sure I know what it is. It's all about portions for the most part. I don't work out a lot, but I do like to be active."

According to Kimberly Gomer, MS, RD, LD/N and Director of Nutrition at Pritikin Longevity Center and Spa it's not surprising that Hudson's diet advice calls for portion control after her stint as a spokesperson for Weight Watchers.

The catch? Gomer says that portion control either by calorie counting or just eating half the food on the plate can end up being a diet failure. Her reasoning? Sooner or later, you'll get hungry, and you'll also get grouchy, which make dieters "cheat" or break their healthy habits.

Instead Gomer recommends these 3 tips for helping to keep a trim waist:

1. Start every meal with a huge serving of veggies. Vegetables are great because they're low in calories, but high in filling fiber and other nutrients. Also, if you're going to choose a salad, opt for a dressing made of balsamic vinegar and lemon. It's light on calories and won't turn your otherwise healthy meal into something packed with fat. Lookin' at you -- ranch. 

2. Always have healthy food available. Pack a Ziploc bag with some baby carrots or fruit like strawberries or blueberries. Sit at a desk all day? Then make sure to stock your office with nutritious snacks. That way, when you do feel those afternoon hunger pangs coming on you won't be tempted to head for the vending machines. 

3. Don't be afraid of carbs. Eat whole foods like potatoes, beans, lentils, corn, brown rice, quinoa, and squash (just to name a few), but stay away from refined carbohydrates like crackers, pretzels, and white rice.

UP NEXT: 6 Foods That Boost Your Mood AND Help You Lose Weight

73 Thoughts Every Woman Has On a Long Training Run Blog entry Thu, 09 Oct 2014 15:02:25 -0400 Fitbie
Woman Running listening to music

Long training runs. They're cool because, well, you're almost ready to run your goal race. They're not-so-cool because, well, they take forever. If you're an avid runner training for a race, then you're probably used to the same reaction when you tell a friend just how far you'll be pounding the pavement over the weekend. The classic head shake and a "HOW do you not get bored?" question. 

The truth? Eh, sometimes it is boring. Most of the time, though, there are thoughts. Lots of 'em, that go a little something like this: 

1. Is it too cold to be wearing shorts? 
2. Should I try to go again before I get going?
3. Crunchy peanut butter, I love you. 
4. My Gu isn't sitting right in my pocket. 
5. There's gotta be a better solution than sticking these keys in my bra. 
6. Am I going to chafe from this tank top?
7. I should probably wash this water bottle. 
8. What does sweat-wicking REALLY mean?
9. Are these the headphones that go out in the right ear once sweat gets inside?
10. I should've updated my running playlist.
11. Showering after this is going to feel so good.
12. This is the wrong underwear. 
13. My thigh hurts.
14. I really don't feel like doing this.
15. LINK, you damn piece of GPS wrist bling.
16. Today, I am going to run my fastest training run yet.
17. I'm burning like, a bazillion calories today. 
18. Sushi? No, Chinese. No, Italian. BRUNCH.
20. Why are none of these songs the right beat? 

More from Fitbie: A Beginner's Guide to Running a 10K

21. I shouldn't have had those two glasses of wine last night.
22. Whatever happened to Fergie?
23. I might have to poop.
24. I wish I slept longer.
25. How is she running faster than me?
26. This week. What do I have going on this week?
27. I am definitely faster than her. 
28. Thank you lord for declines.
29. Maybe I should nap after this.
30. In through the nose, out through the mouth. 
31. Why is it that no headband with "grip" ever stays still?
32. How would I look wearing a Camelbak?
33. One. Foot. In front. Of. The Other.
34. Did I lock my front door?
35. Why am I doing this?
36. Is Nicki Minaj on EVERY song lately?
37. This Gu tastes like crap.
38. An 8:38 pace, times 26 miles, plus .2 ... am I under 4 hours? 
39. I should probably do some sort of workout for my arms.
40. If you eat brunch at 4 p.m. is that just called dinner?
41. Only 12 miles left which is less than a half marathon which means I CAN DO THIS.
42. What's the difference between hot yoga and vinyasa?
43. I hope I don't get my period during this.
44. Is my Nike chip still lodged in my sneaker?
45. My shin hurts.
46. It's probably time to get new sneakers.
47. Hello, renewed sense of energy.
48. How do people run 6-minute miles?
49. How many miles have I run this week?
50. He should not be wearing that. 

More from Fitbie: Why Cross-Training Is Great For Runners 

52. It's been way too long since I've passed a water fountain. 
53. Is [pumpkin/gingerbread/insert seasonal flavor] fro-yo available yet?
54. My SpiBelt won't stop bouncing.
54. What's really in Gu, anyway?
55. I am SO happy I've never been proposed to while running.
56. I need to get my nails done. 
57. If I go right, I can avoid that nasty hill. 
58. Could I go inside a Starbucks to pee?
59. I definitely run faster when Bruce Springstein is on.
60. How long would I have to be on the elliptical to burn this many calories?
61. I wish you could watch TV outdoors, running.
62. Thighs. Burning. 
63. I should've paid my friends to cheer me on right about now.
64. Actually, I should probably order delivery right now. 
65. Must. Keep. Lifting. Feet. 
66. Need. Power. Song.
67. The adrenaline on race day will make me not feel like this, right?
69. If I can run these [insert distance of long run] then the extra [insert leftover mileage] is nothing. 
70. What doesn't kill you makes you stronger 
71. Could the numbers on this watch move ANY slower?
72. Bacon. Bacon. Bacon. Bacon.
73. DONE. 

UP NEXT: 50 Thoughts Every Woman Has When She Wakes Up Early to Workout 

Emily Abbate
8 Song Titles That Perfectly Describe Your Workout Blog entry Thu, 09 Oct 2014 11:50:34 -0400 Fitbie
Woman on Treadmill

Music and working out go hand in hand like peanut butter and jelly, odds and evens, and '90s Britney Spears and Justin Timberlake (ugh, the memories). When you're working up a good sweat at the gym, there's absolutely nothing better than accompanying that cardio session with some fist-pumping tunes. Can you totally relate? Check out these 8 song names that perfectly describe your workout

"Wake Me Up" (Avicii)
Ninety-nine percent of your morning workout sessions feel a little on the dreary side. Then this comes on, and you're instantly ready for double unders and treadmill sprints.

More from Fitbie: 10 Signs You Practically Live At the Gym

"Problem" (Ariana Grande ft. Iggy Azalea)
What you have when all of the "good" ellipticals are taken. Also, when you realize you have 10 more minutes to go on the elliptical, and you are already SPENT. 

"Turn Down for What" (DJ Snake & Lil Jon)
Before you heard Lil Jon's voice, you weren't sure if you could complete the full minute sprint. After? You're invincible. You're on a whole other level. Turn down for WHAT? For NOTHING!

More from Fitbie: 10 Signs You're In Love With Your Workout Class Instructor

"SexyBack" (Justin Timberlake ft. Timbaland)
What Justin is apparently bringing -- and the thing you have after your glutes workout. Boom. 

"Push It" (Salt-N-Pepa)
Or, what you say to yourself as you sweat through that last set of pushups. Push it real good. 

"Stronger (What Doesn't Kill You)" (Kelly Clarkson)
You're rocking your workout. You feel so strong! There's nothing you can't do. Aside from pullups, maybe. For that, we give you permission to use the assisted pull-up machine. 

"Bo$$" (Fifth Harmony)
Enough said.

"Let's Go" (Calvin Harris ft. Ne-Yo)
You love yourself some gym time, but after getting that workout in, you're amped for whatever's next in your day. 

UP NEXT: 9 Thoughts You Immediately Have After a Big Race

Emily Abbate
Fitbie Find: Kerrygold Cheese and Butter Blog entry Wed, 08 Oct 2014 11:28:43 -0400 Fitbie
Kerrygold cheese and butter

Saturated fat has had a lot of haters in recent years (It'll stop your heart! Make you fat! Break up your marriage!), and while no one is suggesting that a butter-and-bacon diet is your best chance for staying slim and living to 100, a growing body of new research suggests that the "bad fat" might not be the diet disaster we once thought -- particularly when it comes to dairy. In fact, a recent Swedish study found that full-fat dairy products may prevent diabetes

Which brings me to today's #fitbiefind: CHEESE AND BUTTER. Specifically, Kerrygold USA cheese and butter, an Irish import featuring dairy products made from the milk of grass-fed cows. Why should you care what the cow ate, you ask? Because research shows that dairy from pasture-grazing cows -- as opposed to grain-fed cattle -- contains higher quantities of heart-friendly omega 3 fats and more CLAs, another healthy fat that has been shown to improve brain function, promote weight loss, and reduce your risk of cancer.

More from Fitbie: 7 Fall Foods for Weight Loss

Also, they tastes GOOD. True, I can't say that I've ever met a chunk of cheese or slab of butter that I didn't like, but I swear the grass-fed dairy products I sampled from Kerrygold -- shout out to the superbly sharp Reserve Cheddar -- tasted richer than conventional grain-fed varieties.

Plus, Kerrygold butter also happens to be one of the key ingredients of Bulletproof Coffee, the drink of choice of tech investor and weight-loss winner Dave Asprey, author of the upcoming book The Bulletproof Diet. Asprey and other proponents of the coffee + butter combo say it keeps you full and focused -- warding off midmorning hunger pangs and making for a more productive morning. 

What else we love:

• No growth hormones or antibiotics

• Available in major supermarkets nationwide

The details: Kerrygold USA butter and cheese, $5-$10,  

UP NEXT: The Healthier Way to Eat Meat

Cathryne Keller
The Scary Truth About Energy Drinks and Your Workout Blog entry Tue, 07 Oct 2014 15:41:24 -0400 Fitbie
energy drinks

Calling all athletes and caffeine fiends alike: One new study may have you thinking twice before downing your next energy drink. According to Camilo Jose Cela University researchers, endurance athletes who consumed energy drinks saw sports performance improve between 3 and 7 percent, but also saw negative effects as well including frequency of insomnia, nervousness, and the level of stimulation in the hours following competition.
Study author Juan Del Coso Garrigos said that not only did athletes who consumed energy drinks see stellar performance, but they also "ran futher in team competitions, specifically at higher intensities, which is related to sports performance." 
More from Fitbie: 9 Ways to Find More Energy
So with the negative side effects considered, are there alternatives we can turn to that are safer? That’s the question we posed to Dr. Jordan Metzel, author of The Exercise Cure. According to Metzl, energy drinks are safe, as long as they're consumed smart.  

“The performance benefits primarily come from the caffeine, so I would definitely not turn to sugary soft drinks," Metzl said. "Coffee drinkers who go for their morning run, after their cup of coffee, will see about the same effects. Caffeine increases muscle contractility of skeletal and cardiac, so you get more squeeze from your muscle."
More from Fitbie: The Best Foods for All-Day Energy 

How can you get the most "squeeze" from your muscle without the potentially harmful side effects? Dr. Metzel, an endurance athlete himself, gave us his dos and don’ts for caffeine and energy drink consumption:

Don't: Overconsume. Your tolerance for the product will decrease, and you want it to provide benefits when it counts. 
Do: Use energy drinks appropriately and think before you drink. They’re great right before an endurance event. Note: Make sure to test them during training, you never want to try something new during a race like a 5K, 10K, half-marathon, or beyond. 

Don't: Drink caffeine close to bed time. Even if you don't feel the effects, the influx of caffeine in your system could lessen your sleep quality.

Do: Experiment with different types of caffeinated options, including both coffee and energy drinks, if you feel you’re lacking the endurance needed to complete a workout, race, meet, or any other event when you need to rely on extra energy stores for performance. 

Don't: Consume excessive amounts of caffeine just because, especially during the days leading up to an event. “I often advise my patients to stop any caffeine intake a few days leading up to a race, so it packs more punch on race day.”
10 All-You-Can-Eat Foods

Allie Burdick
Strengthen Your Body & Mind in 20 Minutes Blog entry Mon, 06 Oct 2014 17:20:22 -0400 Fitbie
lifting weights

When embarking on a new workout plan, patience is often the most important key to success. After all, weight loss, endurance, and strength don't just appear overnight. The good news? Researchers say it only takes two days for exercise to work its magic on mental health. A study coming out of the Georgia Institute of Technology shows that an intense workout of as little as 20 minutes can enhance memory by about 10 percent in healthy adults

Study participants were shown a series of 90 photos, and two days later, were tasked with identifying as many of these original photos as they could from a series with an additional 90. The ones who worked out on a weighted leg extension machine after seeing the original photos for the first time remembered 10 percent more photos two days later than those who didn't. 

More from Fitbie: 10 Ways to Lose 20 Pounds

While study participants used weight training, researchers say that any resistance training (think squats or knee bends) would likely produce the same results. Why? It's the same reason psychological stressors like public speaking allow us to remember every little detail: Stress -- like resistance -- releases hormones in the brain that boost function and enhance memory. 

Ready to swap your afternoon cardio for a weights session? Play it safe, avoid injury, and make the most of your workout with these tips from Bryan Krahn, certified strength and conditioning specialist, fitness trainer, and coach:

1. Start slow. "Jumping into an advanced weight training program right off the hop is unwise," Krahn says, and can put you on the fast track to injury. "You need to learn the basic movement patterns first -- push, pull, squat, hinge -- which a qualified trainer or coach can teach you."

2. Keep a log. The key to weight training is adding in either an extra rep or a little more weight each workout. "A log book makes keeping track a breeze," Krahn suggests.

3. Power up with protein. "Carbohydrates fuel hard workouts but you need protein to build muscle and recover from exercise," he says. The problem? Most of us eat far too many carbs and not enough protein. "Try to have a serving of lean protein within an hour of finishing your workout," he says. "You'll notice quicker recovery."

UP NEXT: Krav Maga Made Me Feel Fierce

Fitbie Find: Asics Speed Windstopper Vest Blog entry Sat, 04 Oct 2014 10:00:17 -0400 Fitbie
Asics Vest

It's that time of year where your runs start off chilly, but by the end you're wishing you were wearing a tank top. In other words, it's vest season. Vests are the perfect option to keeping your core warm while exposing your arms and (excuse us for stating the obvious) armpits. That's where this week's #SaturdaySaver comes into play: The Asics Speed Windstopper Vest.

With a stretch knit back panel with laser cut pattern for extra cooling, a chest pocket for storage, and reflective elements for increased visibility -- this vest is an absolute no-brainer, especially at more than 50 percent off. 

Was: $100
Now: $49

UP NEXT: Why Cross-Training Is Great for Runners (VIDEO)

Emily Abbate
The Playlist That'll Help You Concentrate During Your Workout (LISTEN) Blog entry Fri, 03 Oct 2014 10:00:10 -0400 Fitbie
Flex Studios NYC

Every week Fitbie is featuring rad playlists from rad fitness instructors. This week, Jenn Seracuse, Director of FlexPilates at Flex Studios, shares hers with us.

"Music is such an important part of my classes at Flex Studios. I never want it to be just background noise. I play a variety of styles and like to mix it up, but look for a flow to the playlist, so the transitions from song to song are as seamless as the class," says Seracvuse. "Flow is a huge part of what I do, and music is a great tool to help fuel that. I usually find one or two songs I know I want to use in a playlist and then build the rest around them. Remixes help keep the energy high, so I use them a lot. I also look for some good hip hop & trap songs for ab segments. I like my class to slow down and really focus during tough ab sequences and those heavy beats make me feel like a bad ass who can do anything, so I hope my students feel that way, too! I always finish with a slower cool down song and a stretch. It's important that there is a definite end to each class and the playlist comes full circle."


UP NEXT: The Playlist That'll Amp Up Spin Class (LISTEN)

Emily Abbate
Krav Maga Made Me Feel Fierce Blog entry Fri, 03 Oct 2014 10:06:41 -0400 Fitbie
woman kicking

I always thought that women who practiced martial arts were seriously badass. However, since "ripped" is not an adjective I would ever use to describe myself, I was too intimidated to sign up for a class. But when I discovered Krav Maga, a form of martial arts that favors accuracy over strength, I knew it was time to face my fears and kick some booty.  

More from FitbieUFC Boxing Made Me Feel Like a Badass

The Gist: Krav Maga is the self-defense system derived from boxing, Jiu-Jitsu, and wrestling. Developed specifically for the Israeli Defense Force, it's suitable for everyone -- regardless of gender, size, or physical strength. After learning Krav Maga, a petite woman should be able to take down a large, bulky man. The practice incorporates defensive tactics, hand-to-hand combat techniques, and fighting skills. It also happens to be an excellent form of exercise, using the entire body for strength training, and offering a cardio workout that can burn up to 800 calories in one session!

More from Fitbie: A Beginner's Guide to Kickboxing

Unlike other popular martial arts like Jiu-Jitsu and Karate, Krav Maga has no rules, no competitions, and is designed for real-life critical situations. Students learn tactics to build awareness, strike effectively, and defend themselves against various weapons. These essential self-defense skills -- awareness, in particular -- boost confidence and help you feel in control of your body, which is key in avoiding threatening situations.

"Predators often pick their targets by how they walk," FBI special agent Joe Navarro writes in his new book Dangerous Personalities. "When you're out and about, you want people to know you see them -- or even that you're onto them." Essentially, if you're aware of your body and your surroundings, and feel confident that you can defend yourself, you're less likely to attract danger.

The Experience: The IKM Krav Maga class I attended started with a quick game of dodge ball to warm up. I was nervous about this -- I’m great at dodging, but awful at attacking! I quickly discovered, though, that dodge ball echoes the fight-or-flight response that occurs in real-life dangerous situations. Sometimes we can run from our attackers; other times we have to fight back. 

After the warm up, we stretched out on the mats and began our training. The first assignment was relatively simple -- we plank-crawled across the room to build our core strength. Afterwards, we learned a tricky maneuver called “shrimping.” We began by lying on the ground face-up, then scooted across the room by pushing with our feet and twisting side to side, ending up looking like shrimp! This was also intended to improve our core strength, as well as speed and accuracy. If someone were to attack you from above, you could use this maneuver to get away from the predator, I learned. 

More from FitbieThe Ultimate Beginner Sneaker Guide

Once we mastered those moves, we moved on to striking techniques. The class divided up into two sides, offense and defense. Armed with protective padding, the attackers simulated a hair pull or shirt grab, and the victims used their palms to fight back from all angles. I was so lost at first. Huh? What do you mean "hit through the person"? Do I keep going? Did I win yet? But thanks to my ultra-attentive instructor Dawn Nadaeu, I got the hang of it in no time.

By now I was already working up a sweat, but there were no opportunities to rest. After a quick water break, we moved on to fight drills, burpees, and sit-ups. We ran through a variety of dangerous situations, from chokeholds to being pushed against a wall, and were taught how to effectively escape from each. 

My Take: While I’m definitely not a Krav pro after one session, I can safely say I’ve picked up a few solid techniques that could come in handy in shady situations. The class was definitely not as scary as I thought -- the environment maintained a perfect balance between supportive and challenging. I’d take Krav Maga over spinning any day. Who knew getting my ass kicked could feel so satisfying? 

UP NEXT: 9 Reasons You Should Feel Like a Total Badass After a Great Workout 

3 Surprising Benefits of Sweating Blog entry Fri, 03 Oct 2014 10:12:35 -0400 Fitbie
woman sweating

Soggy sports bras may be a drag, but new research shows that sweating has much better side effects. Scientists recently found that a certain type of bacteria that lives in sweat may help improve skin health, and could eventually be used to develop treatments for acne and other skin ailments. 

According to Kavita Mariwalla, MD, director of Mariwalla Dermatology in West Islip, New York, sweat is your body's buddy in other ways too. Besides being a sign that you’re getting heart-healthy exercise, "It prevents overheating, which is critical for overall health."

But that's not all. Check out these 2 other benefits to getting your sweat on

1. It rids your body of toxins. And BONUS: you don’t have to take a Bikram yoga class to reap the benefits. "Through heat, the skin’s pores open, and they release anything that is blocking them," says Mariwalla. Sweating can rid your body of alcohol, salt, and other food sins from the night before.

2. It protects you from germs. Human sweat contains an antimicrobial protein known as dermcidin, which scientists at Eberhard Karls University in Tubingen, Germany found defends the body against germs and pathogens. But don’t be tempted to leave sweat on your body as a protective shield. "After you sweat, you should rise off with clean water, since sweat that stays on the skin can attract fungus and create an overgrowth of bacteria," says Mariwalla.

UP NEXT: Just 5 Minutes of Running a Day Can Change Your Life

An Apple a Day May Be the Key to Fighting Obesity Blog entry Fri, 03 Oct 2014 10:08:22 -0400 Fitbie

We're all familiar with the old saying, "An apple a day will keep the doctor away." There's a reason that phrase has lasted all of these years -- it's got some truth to it. Increased energy levels aside, green apples have been shown to help prevent disorders associated with obesity. According to a recent study published in Food Chemistry, Granny Smith apples have non-digestible compounds that can help decrease the likelihood of a person suffering from obesity.

Researchers at Washington State University found that thanks to the high amount of non-digestible compounds (including dietary fiber, polyphenols, and the low level of available carbs) in these the apples, the growth of good bacteria in the colon is significantly aided.

More from Fitbie: Could Stress Be Sabotaging Your Weight-Loss Efforts?

It should be noted that not all apples are equal, according to the study. When it comes to the amount of non-digestible compounds, Granny Smiths greatly outnumber Braeburn, Fuji, Gala, Golden Delicious, McIntosh, and Red Delicious.

"The non-digestible compounds in the Granny Smith apples actually changed the proportions of fecal bacteria from obese mice to be similar to that of lean mice," said food scientist Giuliana Noratto, the study's lead researcher.

For Dr. Caroline Cederquist MD, author of The MD Factor, the findings of this study are intriguing. She shared that while we do know that fruits and vegetables contain many substances that are beneficial to health, we're just starting to learn more about the details of how they are so helpful.  

"In this case it is the phytonutrients or specific fibers that encourage bacteria that are beneficial to weight loss to predominate in the intestine," stated Cederquist. She also points out that yes, adding apples to the diet are beneficial for weight loss, however, if you want to lose weight the apple has to replace something else -- not simply added to what you usually eat.   

"An apple takes time to eat, you need to chew it, and it gives a satisfying crunch that is enjoyed," said Cederquist. "I encourage my patients to eat real food. An important point is that fruit, when eaten alone can raise blood sugar and insulin levels and then they can crash, causing more hunger. I recommend people eat an apple with food that contain protein and fat like string cheese or peanut or almond butter for a better metabolic balance."

UP NEXT: 6 Tricks to Help You Bust Out of a Weight-Loss Plateau

Fitbie Find: Nike Zoom Structure 18 Blog entry Wed, 08 Oct 2014 10:06:08 -0400 Fitbie
Nike Zoom Structure 18

A lot of sneakers that are specifically designed with runners in mind are heavy in weight. The reason? The shoes pack extra cushioning that runners need when they're continuously pounding pavement. The new Nike Air Zoom Structure 18 is anything but a brick to tote around. Yet still, it offers a stable, responsive ride enabling the wearer to feel faster AND secure. That's why the sneaker, out today, is this week's #FitbieFind.

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Nike's Zoom Air cushioning is super springy, providing an extra bounce to your step along with low-profile impact protection. Plus, the Flywire cable that wraps the foot provides extra support without bulk -- something runners can appreciate. 

What else we love:

• Available for NikeID

The Details: Nike Air Zoom Structure 18, $120,

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Emily Abbate
9 Thoughts You Immediately Have After a Big Race Blog entry Wed, 01 Oct 2014 13:11:07 -0400 Fitbie
running race

There's no better feeling than finishing a big road race. The day of, you anticipated the challenge, laced up your fave sneakers, wore your best race outfit, and hopefully snagged one or two "race face!" selfies along the way. Now that you've cross the finish line, you likely have this whole new sense of accomplishment—not to mention a lot of thoughts. Check out these nine you immediately have after finishing a race:

"BAGEL ME." Arguably the best part of finishing any road race? The friendly race volunteers lined up with box after box of sweet, carb-tastic bagels. The best gift you've ever been given? Very possible. 

"WHERE are my parents?" You may not have appreciated the baby photos Dad decided to plaster all over your "Run like the wind!" fan poster, but you wouldn't mind a hug and a congratulatory bouquet of flowers right about now.

"My hair cannot be attractive." But you just ran so fast and so far! Embrace that hard-earned sweaty coif, lady! 

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"Okay, need a bathroom." Not a lot of people talk about that post-race bathroom session. That's because, well, it's not always pretty. 

"I may fall over soon." Your adrenaline has dwindled and you're ready for sleep, like, now. 

"I killed that!" What did that clock say when you crossed the finish line again? Who cares? You're done, you're done! FINITO! 

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"Okay, but what was my time?" Let's be real: It matters. And the downfall of road races: No matter how fast the race results go live on the website, the wait feels like a small eternity. 

"What's the point of this thing, anyway?" Ahhh, the post-race space blanket. Since you're asking, the thermal covering is supposed to keep your body warm after you're done exercising, when your core temperature commonly drops. (It also makes a really great cape in Superwoman-pose photos.)

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"When's my next race?" Ah-ha! You now officially have the running itch!

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Emily Abbate
Another Reason to Take a Walking Break Blog entry Tue, 30 Sep 2014 16:54:58 -0400 Fitbie

Anecdotally, we know that taking a walk to clear your head gives you a change of scenery, some fresh air, and even a more positive attitude. And finally, researchers agree: According to a study from the University of Michigan, group nature walks are linked with significantly lower depression, less stress, and better mental health overall. Additionally, study subjects who had recently encountered a stressful life event -- think serious illness, death of a loved one, unemployment -- experienced a mood boost immediately after heading outside to walk with a group.

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"For decades, walking has been used for stress relief, fat reduction, heart health, and overall fitness for all ages and fitness levels," said John Rowley, certified trainer and author of The Power of Positive Fitness. "So often, I hear that clients believe the only way to be 'fit' is to log hours in the gym -- but it's far from the truth!"

Sure, grabbing some girlfriends for a walk outside is great for your mental fitness -- but it does wonders for your workout, too. Here are Rowley's main reasons why:

1. You can't beat outdoor terrain: Whether you're walking on the street, a dirt path, or the beach, the changes in ground, wind resistance, curved roads, and natural hills outside will provide more resistance (read: a more challenging workout) than a boring indoor track or treadmill ever could.

2. Sunshine is good for you: "Working out outside is great for your vitamin D levels, as it gets you out in the sun," Rowley said. 

3. Groups enhance your workout: Working out with friends keeps you accountable. In fact, a university study cited in the Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology revealed that those who recruited three friends or family members to assist them in their wellness journey had better weight loss results than those who had no buddy system to fall back on. That's exactly why workout buddies are a great source of encouragement to do the best you can. 

"Exercising in a group also allows us to make fitness a more enjoyable, social experience, and therefore becoming something you're more inclined to make a long-term habit," he added.

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