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POPSUGAR Fitness inspires readers to live a healthy, balanced lifestyle with news and tips on exercise, eating, gear, and more!

Published: Sat, 10 Dec 2016 03:04:33 -0800

Copyright: Copyright 1976-2016 POPSUGAR Inc. All rights reserved.

Healthy Gifts That Keep on Giving: The Best Monthly Subscription Boxes

Fri, 09 Dec 2016 20:40:00 -0800


Don't think outside the box for the holidays this year - think about the actual box! Monthly subscription boxes like the POPSUGAR Must Have Box are a great gift idea. Not only do they take minimal time end effort on your part, depending on how many months the subscription lasts, but also, your friend or family member has a gift to look forward to every month, not just on the day of the holiday. Imagine her surprise when she opens a lightweight package to find a little note that says she's about to receive one of these!

25 Great Fitness Gifts, and They're All Under $25!

Fri, 09 Dec 2016 16:50:00 -0800


If you have a fit friend with a special day coming up, we're here to help you score the perfect gift - without breaking the bank. We've rounded up 25 gifts, with selections for the runner, yogi, cyclist, and overall fitness freak. Your wallet will appreciate that all these finds are under $25.

40 Ultrastylish Gifts For Your Athleisure-Obsessed Friend

Fri, 09 Dec 2016 16:45:00 -0800


Do you have a friend who is obsessed with stylish sneakers and lives in impossibly cool activewear? Don't let their style intimidate you when you're shopping for the perfect gift and use this guide as your starting point! From the new sneaker darling APLs to NikeLab street style and plenty of mesh insets and luster leggings, these picks will please even the pickiest of fitness fashionistas. There are plenty of gym-ready kicks to add to their collection, plus all the coolest active pieces to wear with them.

Crush Your 2017 Resolution Goals With Essential Fitness Gear

Fri, 09 Dec 2016 16:25:00 -0800


If you're getting fit gifts for the family or just gearing up for the new year yourself, these fitness and health staples will help you stay motivated, track your progress, eliminate excuses, and keep you feeling healthy and strong all year.

Essentials like a solid pair of running shoes, a strong blender, and a goal-setting gratitude journal will help anyone with their healthy 2017 New Year's resolutions - whether it's you or someone you love. Perfect for gifting, or for some postholiday shopping.

Become a Healthy Baker With These Surprising Butter Substitutes

Fri, 09 Dec 2016 16:00:00 -0800

Baking calms the mind and feeds the soul, but all that buttery goodness can pack on the pounds. If you're looking to make healthier baked goods, omitting some or all of the butter from your favorite recipes can greatly reduce the calories, fat, and cholesterol. There are countless ways to replace eggs in recipes, and here are healthier alternatives to using butter (great for vegan bakers, too). Applesauce: Often used to replace oil in recipes, applesauce can also be used as a butter alternative, and it works best in cake-like recipes (like this vegan banana apple chunk bread). Replace half the amount of butter in your recipe with applesauce; if the recipe calls for one cup of butter, use half a cup of butter and half a cup of applesauce. If you don't mind a denser, more moist bread, replace all the butter with applesauce to cut even more calories and fat. Related:Everything You Need to Know About Baking With Coconut Oil Avocado: Substitute half the amount of butter in a baking recipe with mashed avocado (it works well with cookies and quick breads like these pumpkin apple muffins); use the same method as you would when using applesauce. Using avocado not only lowers the calorie content, but also creates a softer, moister baked good, and is perfect if you want to omit the dairy. You can also use avocado in place of butter to make vegan "buttercream" frosting. Earth Balance: Replace all the butter with Earth Balance to reduce saturated fat and cholesterol. Using Smart Balance rather than Earth Balance will also save some calories, and note that Original Smart Balance is now dairy-free! Canola oil: In certain recipes, replacing butter with oil works well, especially if the recipe calls for melted butter. Fiddle with your favorite recipes to figure out when canola works instead of butter; when baking chocolate chip cookies, I've had success substituting half a cup of canola oil for half a cup of unsalted butter. Although slightly higher in calories, canola is much lower in saturated fat, cholesterol, and sodium. Related:Don't Stop at Just One: 22 Healthy Cookie Recipes Greek yogurt: Replace half the amount of butter in your cookie recipes with half the amount of full-fat plain Greek yogurt. For example, if the recipe calls for one cup of butter, use half a cup of butter and one quarter cup of yogurt. You'll reduce the calories and the saturated fat. Play around with using more yogurt and less butter to see if you still like the taste and consistency. Here are more ways to use Greek yogurt in baking recipes. If you're avoiding dairy, use soy yogurt instead, like this recipe for protein banana bread. Prune purée: Often used to help little ones stay regular, prune purée also makes a low-calorie and low-fat alternative to butter. Whatever amount of butter the recipe calls for, replace it completely with store-bought baby food prune purée (unless you have time to make your own; just purée prunes in the food processor). This option works well in recipes that involve chocolate and cinnamon. [...]

19 Healthy Snacks Made With Bananas

Fri, 09 Dec 2016 15:00:00 -0800


A banana makes the perfect snack, but if you're looking to spice up this basic fruit, try these snack recipes.

So, What Is Hashimoto's Disease?

Fri, 09 Dec 2016 14:35:00 -0800


In light of Gigi Hadid's recent announcement that she deals with Hashimoto's disease, many of us responded with sympathy - and a "wait, what's Hashimoto's disease?"

In sum, it's an autoimmune (an immune system disorder) disease that affects the thyroid. Quick refresher: your thyroid controls metabolism, weight, body temperature, heart rate, and your menstrual cycle. In a patient with Hashimoto's, the immune system attacks the thyroid, leading to a loss of necessary hormone production.

Effects and Symptoms of Hashimoto's

According to WebMD, symptoms range from pain to weight gain to fertility issues to depression.

  • Weight gain
  • Fatigue
  • Paleness or puffiness of the face
  • Joint and muscle pain
  • Constipation
  • Inability to get warm
  • Difficulty getting pregnant
  • Joint and muscle pain
  • Hair loss or thinning, brittle hair
  • Irregular or heavy menstrual periods
  • Depression
  • Slowed heart rate
  • Increased risk of developing other autoimmune disorders, including vitiligo, rheumatoid arthritis, Addison disease, type 1 diabetes, multiple sclerosis, and pernicious anemia

How Do You Get It?

The cause is unknown, and it affects more women than men - about one to two percent of the US population. The US National Library of Medicine attributes it to a "combination of genetic and environmental factors," and notes that the onset is typically in mid-adulthood. WebMD suggests that radiation exposure or too much iodine can be contributing factors, though genes are primarily the source.

Is There a Cure?

No, but there are medications that can help regulate your hormones and get your metabolism regulated again.

3 Workout Must Dos to Save Time at the Gym

Fri, 09 Dec 2016 13:00:00 -0800


When you're pressed for time during the holidays, it's important to make the most of your time at the gym. Instead of feeling like you need to spend tons of precious time on a lengthy cardio session, these gym hacks will shave time off your workout and help you see results.

Add intervals: Maximize your cardio with intervals. Playing with the speed burns more calories than working at a steady pace and it also revs up your metabolism! In a study from the journal Cell Metabolism, researchers found that periods of intense cardio can fire up certain genes that initiate the fat-burning process and after-burn effect, which translates to more calories burned even after the workout is over. It doesn't get better than that. Here are some interval workouts to get you started.

Add intensity: If you tend to take a step back and not push yourself when working out solo, go for intense group classes. Most gyms offer quick and dirty 30- to 45-minute workouts that go intense, keep you on your toes, and burn tons of calories. If heading to the gym isn't an option, it's totally possible to kick your own butt at home. These 10 fast full-body workouts help you make it happen!

Add weights: Still think that lifting heavier weights only makes you bulk up? Guess again. According to trainer Tia Falcone, who helped Miss America lose over 50 pounds, weight training is the key to achieving the toned, strong look you're going for; she suggests aiming for four strength-training sessions per week. Save time with this mashup full-body circuit workout that keeps your heart rate elevated to burn calories while you build muscle with weights.

20 Swoon-Worthy Health and Fitness Gifts Under $100

Fri, 09 Dec 2016 12:50:00 -0800


So you want a nicer-than-average gift for your fit best friend, your parent starting a healthy journey, or a significant other who loves to work out - but you might not have a ton of money to spend. Let's go with $100 and under so you can give something meaningful and awesome without breaking the bank. We've rounded up thoughtful, practical, and totally swoon-worthy gifts that help with exercise, healthy eating, and active adventures of all kinds - and many of these are some of our favorite products that we use daily (read: they'll love them as much as we do!)

This Fitness Marshall Video Is a Calorie-Torching Dance Party

Fri, 09 Dec 2016 12:06:00 -0800

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Throwing it back to 2004, let's bring all the boys to the yard with this Kelis classic. If you are hitting a rut or need to fit in a quick three-minute cardio sesh, this will definitely get the blood pumping and boost your mood! Get down to a fun (and hilarious) hip-hop cardio video with easy-to-follow choreography, courtesy of The Fitness Marshall.

Are You Eating Too Much Protein?

Fri, 09 Dec 2016 12:00:00 -0800


There's no absolute answer for how many grams of protein a woman should get each day - it depends on your weight, your activity level, and whether or not you're pregnant. But with a little elementary-school math, there's an easy way to calculate the number of protein grams that's right for you.

Take your weight in pounds and divide it by 2.2 to figure out your weight in kilograms. Then multiply that number by 0.8 (not very active), 1.3 (active or pregnant), or 1.8 (extremely active), depending on how much exercise you get.

As a general guideline, the CDC's average requirement of protein for women ages 19 to 70 is 46 grams per day. But, as you can see from this chart, you'll need to increase that if you're expecting or training for a marathon.

Check out the chart below to see how much protein you should be eating each day. If you don't see your weight, just use the formula above to calculate your daily protein.

Weight (lbs) Weight (kg) Protein per day (not very active) Protein per day (active or pregnant) Protein per day (extremely active)
100 45.5 36.4 g 59.2 g 81.9 g
105 47.7 38.2 g 62 g 85.9 g
110 50 40 g 65 g 90 g
115 52.3 41.8 g 68 g 94.1 g
120 54.5 43.6 g 70.9 g 98.1 g
125 56.8 45.4 g 73.8 g 102.2 g
130 59.1 47.3 g 76.8 g 106.4 g
135 61.4 49.1 g 79.8 g 110.5 g
140 63.6 50.9 g 82.7 g 114.5 g
145 65.9 52.7 g 85.7 g 118.6 g
150 68.2 54.7 g 88.7 g 122.8 g
155 70.5 56.4 g 91.7 g 126.9 g
160 72.7 58.2 g 94.5 g 130.8 g
165 75 60 g 97.5 g 135 g

Based on the numbers above, do you already get enough protein per day?

Skip the Ibuprofen and Do These Yoga Poses For Menstrual Cramp Relief

Fri, 09 Dec 2016 11:30:00 -0800

Got cramps? You're not alone. Many women suffer from severe menstrual pain (known as dysmenorrhea) with sharp, throbbing, burning, or nauseating cramps in their lower abdomen and back. The cramps may come right before you get your period or during, but thankfully they go away when your period is over. Related:Sip Away PMS Symptoms With This Chocolate Cashew Smoothie These crippling, can't-get-through-your-normal-day kind of cramps are caused by uterine contractions and can be aggravated by emotional stress. They tend to cause headaches and a really heavy flow - twice the fun. Some women take pain meds to deal, but you may want to give these yoga poses a try, since getting your body moving (and out of fetal position on the couch) can really help with cramps. Half Bound Squat Hip pain can be part of the whole cramp scene, so stretching them out feels really good. Here's how to do Half Bound Squat. Stand with your feet slightly wider than hips-width-distance apart. Bend your knees, and lower your hips all the way down. Take a peek at your feet, and see if you can press your heels out, bringing your feet parallel. Press your elbows against your inner knees, and lengthen through your torso. Hold like this in a Wide Squat for five breaths. Then bring your left arm between your knees. Lower your left shoulder as far under your left knee as possible, so you hug your knee with your armpit as you reach your left forearm around your back with your palm facing away from your body. Reach your right arm up as high as you can, bend your elbow, and bring the back of your right palm to your lower back. If they're close enough, hold your right wrist with your left hand, with the right palm facing behind you. Stay here for five deep breaths. Come back to Wide Squat for one complete breath to release the pose, and repeat on the right side. Arching Pigeon Pigeon Pose also opens your hips, but sometimes it feels better to work one side at a time. This variation will also stretch out the lower belly. Sit on the floor with your right knee bent and your left leg extended behind you. Place your hands on your hips, and gently arch your back. You should feel a nice stretch in the front of your left hip, but if this variation is painful, then lean forward, placing your hands on the floor in front of you. If you want more of a stretch, raise your arms in the air. Hold for five or more breaths, and then repeat this pose on the other side. One-Armed Camel Stretching out your abs and the front of the hips can also relieve cramps. Here's how to do One-Armed Camel. Stand on your shins so your knees are underneath your hips. Reach your right hand back, placing it on your right heel or on the mat behind your right toes. Extend your left arm in the air. Shift weight forward onto your knees to increase the stretch in your quads, belly, and chest. Lower your head behind you, and stay here for five breaths. Switch sides, holding for another five breaths, and then lift the torso up to release. Wide Child's Pose If you feel cramps in your lower back, then Wide Child's Pose is sure to offer relaxation and relief. Place your knees on the floor, widen them to a comfortable distance, and then fold forward, extending your arms in front of you. Rest your forehead on the mat or turn your head to one side, holding for five breaths. Turn your head to the other side for another five relaxing breaths. Reclining Twist Here's a relaxing way to increase side-to-side spinal flexibility, which can also help relieve pain in the lower belly and lower back. Lie on your back, and cross your left knee over to the right side. Extend your arms out wide, gazing to the left. Hold here for at least five breaths, feeling your spine lengthen and [...]

The Low-Calorie Apple Cider Vinegar Drink You Need to Try

Fri, 09 Dec 2016 11:05:00 -0800

If you currently have a bottle of apple cider vinegar on your counter, start making the most of its weight-loss and immunity-boosting powers with this simple ACV and honey drink. It's inspired by the Bragg's Apple Cider Vinegar Drink you see on supermarket shelves, and you'll be incredibly surprised how easy it is to re-create this sip on your own. This refreshing and energizing drink will help keep you healthy and on track during the colder months. You may even end up swapping it for your morning cup of coffee! Related:From Weight Loss to Better Digestion, There's Not Much Golden Milk Can't Do Apple Cider Vinegar and Honey Drink From Lizzie Fuhr, POPSUGAR Fitness Notes Using flat water will give you a taste just like the original, but I love swapping it out for sparkling water. It feels more like a mocktail than a simple sip. Ingredients2 cups water, flat or sparkling 4 tablespoons apple cider vinegar 1/4 teaspoon honey Directions Combine all the ingredients together in a tall glass and mix until the honey is completely dissolved. Enjoy immediately with a few ice cubes. Image Source: Calorie Counter Information Category Drinks Yield 1 drink Nutrition Calories per serving 18 [...]

8 Simple Ways to Manage Seasonal Depression

Fri, 09 Dec 2016 09:55:00 -0800


Wintertime can bring holiday cheer, but it can also bring an onslaught of moodiness, loss of energy, and downright depression. Sometimes, symptoms are severe enough to require treatment; this cyclical and seasonal depression is known as Seasonal Affective Disorder. Women between the ages of 15 and 55 are most at risk for this condition that is literally "SAD" in its acronymic form.

Whether you have mild symptoms that need a boost or a more serious bout of seasonal blues, these tips and tricks can help mitigate the effects of wintertime sadness (and we think tip eight might be most crucial!).

How Gigi Hadid Finds Balance in Her Life and in Her Refrigerator

Fri, 09 Dec 2016 08:15:00 -0800

Gigi Hadid: model of the year, Victoria's Secret runway superstar, fitness advocate, and so much more. I was lucky enough to sit down with the stunning, barrier-breaking icon at Reebok's #PerfectNever event and I was incredibly curious to find out how she maintains such a healthy lifestyle and what her staple food items are. "I was always taught to pay a lot of attention to my body and the foods that make me feel good." "I'll start by saying I was always taught to pay a lot of attention to my body and the foods that make me feel good," Gigi said. "It's really important to get tested for your allergies and know what's inflammatory for your body, what you shouldn't be eating. I think all of those things are really important, more than following one person's fitness and diet routine." As the face of Reebok's incredible campaign, Gigi explained that instead of following what works for someone else, everyone should listen to their own bodies and respond with what makes them feel good, in addition to changing things up often. "Changing your diet and your workout routine a lot is really important because your body gets a lot of muscle memory, and once you've done something for so long it just stops working," she said. But what makes Gigi feel good? Just like her impressively well-rounded career, Gigi is into a well-balanced meal. "Meat, veg, carbs - anything, as long as it's made well," she said. Gigi gave us a good idea of what her refrigerator looks like, and as someone who is always on the go, it makes perfect sense. "It's a lot of organic, fresh ingredients, like tomatoes, garlic, onions, milk, eggs, flour - things that you know are good ingredients, that you can kind of mix up and make whatever you want," she told us, adding "a lot of meat." Minced meat was the first thing that came to Gigi's mind when talking about her staple food items because of all the different directions it can go in, explaining, "I love spaghetti bolognese, but you can also make meatballs or burgers." Another one of Gigi's essential kitchen items: eggs. "I love baked eggs, if you have an organic tomato sauce, you can do baked eggs with bacon and just have bread on the side," she explained, as I salivated subtly. "Anything that you can kind of mix into a lot of different things that you like is good. Just depends on what you like." Gigi has worked with Reebok on the #PerfectNever campaign, aiming to take the notion of "perfection" and crumble it into a million pieces, redefining what it means to be "perfect" and push yourself to be the best version of yourself, physically, mentally, and socially. And just like the empowering messages Gigi has been spreading with the campaign, she made it very clear that her meals are far from perfect, too. "It would be a lie to say that I'm always cooking [on my days off], because on set, I'm eating the sh*t set food and I'm down with a cheese and egg burrito with hot sauce," Gigi said. "I'm into it." Related:Gigi Hadid Is the New Face of Reebok’s #PerfectNever CampaignThese 14 Fit Women Kept Us Inspired All Year LongA Kickass Boxing Workout You Can Do Anywhere [...]

DIY Snickers Bar That's Vegan

Fri, 09 Dec 2016 07:40:00 -0800


You'll be surprised how easy it is to make your own Snickers bar. Watch this video and we will show you how to make this popular candy bar vegan and raw. Then head to the kitchen and get ready to create!

Media Files:

Flat-Belly Time! Your No-Equipment Abs Workout

Fri, 09 Dec 2016 07:10:00 -0800


Feeling and looking your best is always in season, and your having a strong core helps with both. Move through this effective circuit two to three times for a complete workout, and help tone your belly. The best part is that there's no equipment necessary! You can do this bodyweight routine just about anywhere.

Ellen DeGeneres Climbs on This Is Us Star Milo Ventimiglia's Back and He Does This to Burn Calories

Fri, 09 Dec 2016 06:40:00 -0800

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If you can barely do a handful of push-ups, you'll be floored to see this amazing clip. Ellen Degeneres climbed on the back of This Is Us star Milo Ventimiglia, and he proceeded to effortlessly perform nine push-ups and looked like he could keep going! Even more amazing? Milo climbed on Ellen's back and she did two push-ups. Feeling inspired to get this amazingly strong? Maybe after doing this 30-Day Push-Up Challenge, you'll be able to do partner push-ups, too!

Runners, Please Don't Skip This After Your Next Run!

Fri, 09 Dec 2016 04:05:00 -0800


You just finished an awesome run, but before you strip down and enjoy a much-deserved shower, stretch out your tired muscles. It will not only feel amazing, but will also keep your muscles supple and can help prevent injury. Here are eight essential stretches to do after a run to target your lower back, quads, hip flexors, and hamstrings.

Gear Up For Colder Temps With December's Greatest Fitness and Health Products

Fri, 09 Dec 2016 03:05:00 -0800


With the weather outside majorly cooling off and snow in the forecast (hopefully!), here are some amazing products to keep you warm, energized, and happy this month.

Wouldn't It Be Awesome If Losing Weight Was as Easy as This?

Fri, 09 Dec 2016 02:10:00 -0800


Some people just look at a piece of cake and gain 10 pounds. For those people, wouldn't it be great if losing weight was as easy as this?

Gigi Hadid Explains How Hashimoto's Disease Affects Her Metabolism and Weight Gain

Thu, 08 Dec 2016 19:20:00 -0800


Gigi Hadid bravely opened up about her battle with Hashimoto's disease during a recent interview with Elle magazine. The Victoria's Secret model says the thyroid disease - which is more common for women than men - affected her metabolism, weight loss, and even her muscle gain ahead of this year's Victoria's Secret Fashion show.

"My metabolism actually changed like crazy this year," Hadid said. "For the [Victoria's Secret] show I didn't want to lose any more weight, I just want to have muscles in the right place." Gigi also revealed she has been taking medication for the disease for two years, and hopes that the thyroid disease won't affect her ability to get a perkier bottom. "If my butt can get a little perkier, then that's good," she told the magazine.

If you're still wondering about the symptoms and causes of Hashimoto's disease, check out our comprehensive medical description about how it affects women's health.

A Title Boxing Club Trainer Created This 30-Minute Calorie-Torching Workout For You

Thu, 08 Dec 2016 18:55:00 -0800


You'll feel stronger and more empowered than ever as you burn through calories with this at-home boxing workout, courtesy of TITLE Boxing Club Trainer, Michael Yabut.

Michael says, "You'll begin the workout with stretching and calisthenics to warm up your muscles, increase circulation and range-of-motion, and activate the nervous system." After your warm-up, "you'll transition into the rounds; each round consists of three minutes of shadow boxing and full-body exercises to burn calories. Between each round you may rest or participate in 'active' rest (which will help keep your mind and body engaged). You'll finish out the workout with core strengthening and stretching."

Are you ready to feel the burn and get a badass boxing workout in at home? Let's go!