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Archive for January, 2018

A 'Bomb Cyclone' Forming off the East Coast Could Bring the Coldest Temperatures in 100 Years

A 'Bomb Cyclone' Forming off the East Coast Could Bring the Coldest Temperatures in 100 Years

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As record cold temperatures paralyze much of the country, a “bomb cyclone” forming off the East Coast is threatening to douse the area from Northern Florida to New England in ice and snow. The weather event has the potential to make 2018 one of the worst winters in the U.S. yet, and it’s only the first week of January.

A bomb cyclone, scientifically known as an explosive cyclogenesis, typically brews over the water where drops in barometric pressure can make it an extra forceful weather event. Making matters worse, forecasters say the storm could trap the bone-chilling cold currently putting the middle of the U.S. in a deep freeze over the Atlantic coastline later this week. The extreme cold has already been blamed for nine deaths across the U.S.

Meteorologists are calling the event Winter Storm Grayson, and they say it could bring snow to the Southeast on Wednesday, as well as possible blizzard conditions to the Northeast Wednesday night and Thursday. After the wet winter weather passes, the cold air would make the east coast even more miserable. Boston, for instance, could see its coldest week in 100 years.

But if the snow and the cold don’t get you, the wind will, says the National Weather Service. Windchill advisories are currently in effect across the mid-Atlantic, with warnings in place for Ohio, Kentucky, Tennessee, and Pennsylvania. Pittsburgh and State College, Penn. may even experience -20 degree weather Tuesday evening — and that’s before the big storm hits.

Source: A ‘Bomb Cyclone’ Forming off the East Coast Could Bring the Coldest Temperatures in 100 Years

January 3, 20180 commentsRead More
8 Secrets of People Who Never Miss a Workout

8 Secrets of People Who Never Miss a Workout

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We all have that one pal or family member that seems to consistently be working out. On social media, there are the countless check-ins at the gym and fitness studios, the #seenonmyrun hashtags, the pics of brand-new and triumphantly mud-covered sneakers, updates on calories burned, and maps of miles biked or jogged. Meanwhile, you may have meant to head to the gym—but instead, here you are, scrolling through your feeds on the couch.

Real talk: It may not look like it, but even those avid exercisers sometimes struggle. “When my alarm goes off each morning, my first thought is often ‘urgggg,’” confesses Jessie F.*, an endurance athlete who’s completed three marathons, a full Ironman, and more half-marathons and Olympic triathlons than she can count. (Impressive, right?) But no matter what the weather—or how early her alarm goes off—Jessie never bails on a workout.

RELATED: The Best 10-Minute Online Workouts You Can Do Anywhere

What keeps her so committed? We spoke to people who never miss a scheduled sweat sesh–along with personal trainers and coaches who go to the gym like, well, it’s their job–to find out their secrets.

Make it easy—really, really easy

Your workout can be gentle or challenging, but the logistics should always be simple. That’s why Pete N. skips the gym in favor of P90X. “Exercising at home saves time, so there’s never an excuse not to work out,” he says.

Rachel Kasab goes a step beyond the classic advice to pack your workout gear the night before. “If I have an early wake-up the next day, sometimes I sleep in my workout clothes to make sure I follow through,” she says. “Once you have your gear on you have no excuse!”

Find a tribe—or at least a buddy—to keep you accountable

“My real secret is finding the other ‘crazies’ who enjoy working out at the crack of dawn,” Jessie says. “If you agree to meet your workout buddy at 5:45 a.m., there’s no way you can back out. When I did the Ironman, I couldn’t have done it without finding my crew.”

Not wanting to let people down is compelling for instructors too. “I became a group fitness instructor in 2016,” says Cori Magnotta. “You can’t flake out when 20 people are counting on you to show up and lead them!”

Make sure you’ll pay a price for bailing

Gyms and studios that charge even if you skip out on your workout are on to something. “My gym charges a $10 penalty fee if you don’t show up for a class you registered for plus the price of the class,” says Jen. C. “You could lose up to $30 for just being lazy. I can’t stand wasting money, so when I sign up for a class, I go.”

Ashley D. upped the ante and hired a running coach who crafts personalized workout schedules for her and her husband. “The accountability is huge,” she says. “I don’t want to waste the money we pay for the coach, and I’m embarrassed if I don’t get in all my workouts or don’t show improvement over time, so I make sure to do all my runs and try hard. First time I’ve ever really stuck with running–and I just ran my first half-marathon!”

Invest in technology

Gadgets know when you hit your fitness goals–and when you slack. “My Fitbit keeps me honest and accountable,” says Deb Russell, who never misses a workout aside from sick days.

Cathy Hale combines both friends and tech to keep her accountable. “I share my workout activity on my Apple Watch with my super-fit friend,” she says. “It may sound silly, but it keeps me motivated to hit our shared goals. We’re both in our 40s with kiddos, so even when we can’t always work out together, she keeps me motivated virtually. We text each other notes of encouragement.”

RELATED: The Best Smartphone-Friendly Workout Clothes and Gear

Focus on how it’ll make you feel afterward

Jessie credits happy-making endorphins with keeping her committed to daily workouts. And she’s not alone. “I always know I’ll feel great after I start my run, and sometimes that’s reason enough to get going,” says Emily A. “After I had a bad breakup and was feeling so depressed, I’d remind myself that if I ran, the endorphins would make me feel better chemically. I’d make a conscious effort to remember that running would lift me up and improve my mood.”

Sign up for a race—or schedule a treat

A due date—in the form of a scheduled race—is motivation magic. “I started running in 2017 and part of how I got myself to run was registering for a 5K and planning to do it with friends,” says Amy M. Gardner, certified coach and consultant with Apochromatik. After her first 5K in April, she signed up for another in September and a 15K the following month. “Whether it was not wanting to finish a race dead last or just wanting to keep a commitment to friends, it helped me get out the door on the days when running wasn’t remotely appealing,” she says. “By the time I registered for an 8K on Thanksgiving Day, I was doing it because I knew it would be fun and didn’t need the peer pressure/embarrassment threat to get myself training [anymore].”

Not into running? Other concrete, specific fitness goals–like doing 50 crunches a day–are also effective. Small incentives help too: “Book a manicure,” suggests Kasab, or schedule another fun reward for immediately after your gym session.

RELATED: 7 Tips for Running Your First Race

Make it a habit

“Rut” is usually a bad word when it comes to workouts. But a predictable routine—swimming every morning, for instance—can remove that will I or won’t I? deliberation.

“For about 10 years I worked out six to seven days a week without fail,” says Jessica Cintron. Exercise was originally a way to avoid the dreaded freshman 15, she says, but eventually grew into a habit. “At some point it became a part of my routine, and I no longer thought about it as something to schedule into my day,” she says. “It just was a part of my day.”

She’s not the only one. “We say that doing something every day is easier than doing something some days,” says Lara Land, owner of Land Yoga, an Ashtanga yoga studio in New York City. “You just do it, the same way you brush your teeth every day.”

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Give yourself a little break

Here’s maybe the biggest secret of all: Even the most devoted exercisers take days off. “To keep my workout promises to myself, I build in rest days without guilt,” says KJ Landis, author and creator of the Superior Self series. “I allow myself to sleep in, get a massage or pedicure, take in a movie, or go on a shopping excursion. It’s a well-deserved break that deserves no self-deprecating thoughts.”

Learn to tell the difference between simply not being in the mood to hit the gym and those days when you’re really better off taking it easy. “Get into a routine—but listen to your body when it’s tired,” says life coach Emily Radin. “If you’re truly dying to veg in front of the TV for a night with a bowl of pasta, just think of it as a refueling night,” she says. “My ultimate golden rule is never miss three days in a row.”

*Some names have been changed for privacy

Source: 8 Secrets of People Who Never Miss a Workout

This 8-Minute Ab Workout Will Strengthen Every Muscle in Your Core

This 8-Minute Ab Workout Will Strengthen Every Muscle in Your Core

In this video, 8fit trainer Marife San Victores will take you through a short routine that targets every muscle in the abdomen in just 8 minutes.
Source: This 8-Minute Ab Workout Will Strengthen Every Muscle in Your Core

January 2, 20180 commentsRead More
10 Simple Ways to Actually Enjoy Running

10 Simple Ways to Actually Enjoy Running

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Though he’s now a pro trail runner—a two-time national champion, in fact—David Roche didn’t naturally love the sport. “I will always remember my first run when I went out the door, got 200 yards, and had to stop because I was so winded,” he says. “I was sore for three days afterward.”

The more he ran, the easier—and more fun—it felt. Eventually, he quit his job as an attorney to run, coach a team called Some Work, All Play, and write a forthcoming book (with his co-coach and wife Megan) called The Happy Runner Project.

“You don’t have to run—but if you’re going to run, it should be joyful,” Roche says. And even if you don’t plan to leave corporate life for the trails, you can still reap running’s emotional and physical rewards, he believes. “Definitely, anyone can enjoy it, and anyone can improve by massive amounts.” Here’s how to do both.

Slow down

Most new runners start off at a sprint and quickly flame out, much the way Roche did. Now, he knows better. “If it hurts, you’re going too hard,” he says. Your body needs time to both develop aerobic fitness and adapt to the impact and repetitive motions running involves.

When you first start out, alternate easy running and walking—say, a minute of each. Each week, adjust your intervals (running more, walking less) until you’re steadily jogging. Even then, don’t judge yourself on pace; instead, run by effort, and keep things relaxed. “Listen to your body,” he says.

Then, pick up the pace

That said, steady slogging can quickly grow monotonous. Once you’ve logged a few continuous runs, try adding in bursts of speed—20 to 30 seconds of faster running followed by at least a minute of slower running. Or, find a hill and run up it quickly, then slowly jog back down. Start with two to four bursts or hills, then build up week by week. Besides making time pass more quickly, these short, hard efforts boost your heart rate and help reduce your injury risk.

RELATED: How to Start Running Without Getting Hurt, According to Pros

Turn on some tunes

Music can literally move you. In a small study in the Journal of Strength & Conditioning Research, runners clocked a speedier 5K with less effort when listening to either calm or upbeat melodies. Pro runner and coach Kaitlin Gregg Goodman (find her online at Running Joyfully) chooses different songs for different purposes: “relaxed if you’re trying to chill out on an easy day, a pump-up playlist for hard workouts,” she says.

Podcasts work too, and often come in workout-friendly 30- to 45-minute episodes (one of Roche’s favorites is NPR’s How I Built This). Note: If you’re running outside, consider using just one earbud to stay aware of your surroundings.

Grab a buddy

Running friends make the miles fly by, Roche says. And there’s no better way to multitask than catching up while you get your miles in. Can’t find a pal who’s game to stride with you? Search online or head to your local running store to seek out group runs; they often leave from stores, bars, and gyms. You might meet a brand-new friend who’s just your pace.

Focus your mind

Though training partners and music may serve as welcome distractions, actually tuning in to what you’re doing can also help you enjoy it more, notes Mackenzie L. Havey, a Minneapolis runner and coach and author of Mindful Running. “Research shows that mindful athletes tend to exhibit greater optimism, higher self-confidence, and less anxiety,” she says.

To start, spend the first few steps of your run doing a full scan of your body, mind, and the world around you, she recommends. Notice the feeling of your feet hitting the ground, the sound of birds chirping, the top three thoughts in your head. If you notice your mind wander—and you will—gently bring it back to the present moment. “You’ll find that fully immersing yourself in the run by focusing on your environment, body, and mind boosts enjoyment, even on the days you’re feeling less than inspired to work out,” she says.

RELATED: 5 Running Mistakes Beginners Always Make

Reframe your self-talk

Paying bills, feeding your kids, booking doctor’s visits—there’s plenty in life you have to do. Running, on the other hand, is a conscious choice you’re making to improve your health, fitness, and well-being. “I really like to say that it’s an opportunity, not an obligation,” Gregg Goodman says. Revel in the chance to test your limits, zap stress, and escape the day-to-day pressure of a busy life.

Bottle the beauty

When the going gets tough, focus on the splendor all around you. “It could be the way the leaves have fallen on the path or passing a child learning to ride a bike, or—my favorite—dog spotting,” says Chris Mosier, a four-time member of Team USA in duathlon and triathlon and a coach in Chicago. He always advises his athletes to keep an eye out for inspiring sights along their routes.

Extend those positive vibes by writing down the things you’re grateful for on the run (say, how fresh your legs felt or how fortunate you are to live near a running path) on slips of paper. Fold them up and put them in a used water bottle, Havey recommends. Pull them out when you’re lacking motivation—and over time, you’ll likely find yourself more tuned in to a sense of gratitude from the moment you lace up your running shoes.

RELATED: 11 Rules of Running Buddy Etiquette

Rethink your route

Gregg Goodman often notices runners retracing the exact same routes day in and day out. “I’ll put in their log: Your assignment for today is an exploration run,” she says. Bypassing your well-trod boulevard and seeking out a new sidewalk, path, or park adds an element of excitement to your routine. Another option is a destination run, a point-to-point course that ends up somewhere fun like a coffee shop or bookstore. Just take your phone and use a ride-sharing app to catch a lift home.

Time travel

On days when you can’t quite convince yourself that you like running, remind yourself of how good you’ll feel when you’re finished. “After the morning run, I’m going to be happier, I’ll be more productive, and my husband says I’m a better spouse,” Gregg Goodman says. “It’s like having coffee—we’re all much better people after coffee.”

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Make it meaningful

Give your running purpose by setting a specific target, like completing a 5K or improving upon last year’s time. Reflecting on how much that goal means to you can help you appreciate every step in the process, Gregg Goodman says.

You can also dedicate your miles to a loved one who can no longer run, raise money for a charity, or pace a friend in an event that’s meaningful to him or her. “Sometimes running can feel like a pretty selfish endeavor,” Gregg Goodman says. “Making it bigger than yourself can bring that joy back.”

Source: 10 Simple Ways to Actually Enjoy Running