Flatten That Belly by Friday

by Samantha Bryant on February 20, 2012

It’s the question of the day. How does one get a flat stomach?

Sure, there’s working out and eating healthy. But, what about a quick fix. Thanks to a recent article by Prevention Magazine, learn how to decrease belly bloat (thanks to a long weekend of brunches, dinners, cocktails and laziness).

Fruit Exchange: Swap honeydew, apples, and pears for berries, grapes, and citrus. They contain a near-equal ratio of the sugars fructose and glucose, making them easier to digest than fruits with more fructose.

Feelin’ Salty: More salt equals more water retention. Try to avoid salt, overprocessed foods and salt-based seasoning. If you still need some flavor, try fresh herbs and salt free seasonings. Eat plenty of fruits and veggies that are packed with water and stay away from high sodium frozen meals.

Carb Cutback: Trim back on your daily carbs simply by having eggs for breakfast, one slice of bread, and packing protein-rich snacks such as turkey slices, low-fat string cheese, seeds, and nuts. When you decrease the carbs, this temporarily trains your body to access stored carbs called glycogen and burn them off.

Starch Swap: If you must have carbs, go for some brown rice since it’s the only starch that doesn’t cause bloating. Try to cutback on your potato, pasta, corn and wheat intake.

Don’t Milk It: Try lower-lactose foods (such as hard cheese or yogurt) or lactose-free dairy products (such as rice milk and almond milk), or take a lactase enzyme to help break down lactose to reduce short-term belly bloat.

Urban Girl Fitness Quote of the Day:

“A fat stomach sticks out too far. It prevents you from looking down and seeing what is going on around you.” ~Norman Reilly Raine

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Snowshoe Savvy

by Samantha Bryant on February 9, 2012

I’m proud to say that I went snowshoeing for the first time ever this past weekend. It was such a great experience to be out in the open, take in all of the snowy scenery and fresh air – plus, burn calories! Two hours of snowshoeing alone burns 1026 calories. I could certainly feel the burn in the legs (a good burn!). Here are some tips for newbies like myself:

Buy or rent the most suitable snowshoes – I rented mine from R.E.I. and there are so many other rentals. Also, look into a used sporting good stores if you are looking for a good deal. Depending on snow conditions, it’s usually best to go with the smallest snowshoes to support your weight.

Use Poles – when I rented, I was given the option to use poles or not. I decided to go with the poles and am glad I did. They not only help with balance, they make crossing slopes easy. Plus, I actually felt like a got an arm workout in as well.

Warm Up – Snowshoes require you to take longer strides than usual, especially when going uphill. That’s why it’s important stretch your hamstrings and hips before making your trek to help your flexibility.

Breaking Trail in Fresh Snow – Take turns with your group on who gets to break the snow. This takes extra energy, so it’s always good to share the workload. Plus, hello burning those calories!

Snow H2O – Sure it’s cold and not a hot summer day, but when being active you need water. Don’t forget to bring a water bottle along and suck that water down.

Pack Away – Make sure to bring a backpack complete with essentials (water bottle, healthy snacks, a dry shirt, etc.)

Urban Girl Fitness Quote of the Day:

“Even in winter an isolated patch of snow has a special quality.” ~Andy Goldsworthy

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Photo Credit: ME!

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Friday Fixins': Burrito Casserole

February 3, 2012

Tweet This recipe is so delicious, it literally left me dumbfounded as to how it could possibly be healthy. But, it is. What is this delectable dish, you might ask? It’s a burrito casserole. Dumbfounded yet? You will be after eating it. Not only that, but it’s incredibly easy to make, too. Yes, yes and […]

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Fro Yo-Yo: Frozen Yogurt Fumbles

February 2, 2012

Tweet How much better does it get? Walls full of frozen yogurt flavors ranging from cheesecake, pumpkin spice to espresso. A toppings bar with goodies ranging from cookie crumbles, gummy bears to fruit loops. I mean, frozen yogurt is healthy right? Yes, it is healthier than ice cream. Yet, with all of the options available […]

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Tuesday Tunes: Country Kickin’

January 31, 2012

Tweet Yee haw. If that’s what you want to be saying on your next workout, check out this week’s workout music suggestions. Swap your cowboy boots and hat for runnings shoes and a ponytail. If You’re Going Through Hell | Rodney Atkins Red High Heels | Kellie Pickler Me and My Gang | Rascall Flatts […]

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Un-Health Foods

January 23, 2012

Tweet As if trying to eat healthy wasn’t hard enough as it is, there are some “health” foods that are unhealthy for you and your diet goals. Here’s the rundown thanks to Real Simple: Salad | Some salads can reach up to 1,000 calories. Skip the dressing soup, croutons and cheese. The greens are great, […]

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