Archive for December, 2013

The 7 Weirdest Workout Videos Ever

Posted: December 31, 2013 in balance

#ptsd #posttrauma #trauma #bully

Health and Fitness – The Huffington Post
The 7 Weirdest Workout Videos Ever
Now that the holidays are coming to an end, you may have started to notice a little more cushion around your midsection. All those cookies and pies, gravies and gluten tasted so good at the time, right?

With the dawn of the New Year, you may be thinking it’s time to get back into shape. And what better way to do it than with laughter and a bit of quirkiness?

From Marky Mark’s “fly honey” workout to our favorite Golden Girl Sophia’s senior exercise video, we’ve rounded-up the weirdest workout videos on the web. You can thank us later.

Check out the videos (below), and tell us your favorite workout video in the comments or tweet us @HuffPostLiving.

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#ptsd #posttrauma #trauma #bully

Health and Fitness – The Huffington Post
Julie Nguyen Quit Smoking Cold Turkey To Be Able To Run And Lost 105 Pounds
Got a success story of your own? Send it to us at and you could be featured in our I Lost Weight series!

Name: Julie Nguyen
Age: 31
Height: 5’1″
Before Weight: 245 pounds

How I Gained It: I have been “chubby” all my life. My parents separated when I was very young, so growing up I ate a lot of fast food and TV dinners. Even in my young-adult years, I still ate boxed dinners and preserved foods. I often drank soda and juice because I didn’t like water. I became obese after I moved from southern California to Seattle. I was stuck in an unhealthy relationship and turned to food for comfort with little to no exercise. Depression set in.

Breaking Point: I had back pain, shortness of breath and I had lost all self-esteem.

How I Lost It: It started by taking walks on my breaks and at lunchtime at work. I started to eat less and seek healthier options. I cut out sugary beverages and focused on portion control. I immediately felt better about myself. Every pound lost was motivation to keep going. Setting small, short-term goals, like five or 10 pounds, was easier to achieve than 50, and I would reward myself for each small success. I accepted falling off the wagon if I got right back on.

After I lost my first 30 pounds or so, a friend suggested I join a gym with her. I was hesitant and self-conscious. The thought of working out in a gym with “Kens” and “Barbies” made me uncomfortable. However, my friend took me to the local YMCA, which was a more family-friendly environment. We joined, and I started working out with her. I was having fun and taking classes like Zumba. The weight started to melt off, and I was down 30 to 40 more pounds. Once I hit a plataeu, I pushed harder or tried something new. I decided to partake in my first 5K run/walk. In training for this, I quit smoking, cold turkey. I was a routine smoker for 14 years with no plans to quit, until it became a choice between running and smoking. I wanted to finish that race more than I wanted to continue my bad habits.

Then I started to cook healthfully and rewarded myself only occasionally. I incorporated fresh fruits and veggies and limited carbs. Small snacks every couple hours helped keep me from being hungry and kept me energized. I started cooking lean meats and eating them with a large salad. Within a few more months I had lost a total of 100 pounds!

I never counted calories. I plan meals for the week on Sundays. I allow myself to eat more freely on weekends in moderation with exercise. I traded in my bad habits for good ones. It’s a complete lifestyle change, but well worth it.

I am more athletic now than I ever thought I could be. I go to bootcamp workouts, hiking, to hot yoga. I change up my routine so my body doesn’t get acclimated. Physical activity and health is a priority for me. My attitude toward life has completely changed. I am a positive and happy person, no longer anxious or self-conscious. I love inspiring others. I feel that if I can do it, so can you. Before, I thought I had every reason to fail. But here I am. I am finally comfortable in my own skin. I feel proud of myself (which says a lot). I feel like I can do anything I set my mind to! I know I’m not perfect, but I no longer feel the need to be.

After Weight: 140 pounds
The Huffington Post publishes photographs as they are submitted to us by our readers.

Check out more of our inspiring weight loss stories below:

For more on weight loss, click here.

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Say No to January

Posted: December 31, 2013 in balance

#ptsd #posttrauma #trauma #bully

Health and Fitness – The Huffington Post
Say No to January
Hands up those of you giving up booze for January? Now those planning a detox New Year diet? Wow, I feel slightly depressed already. How on Earth are you going to get through the dark evenings and dreary mornings?

Have you ever noticed how many New Year resolutions are all about giving things up? During the most depressing month of the year, instead of indulging in the things that make us happy, we ban the good bits and suck all the fun out of life.

With this in mind, this January at HuffPost UK, we’ve decided to twist things on their head and instead of saying no to all things we love, we’re saying yes to everything life affirming instead.

So it’s out with abstinence and in with empowerment, rejuvenation and renewal.

In a nutshell, we’re saying you don’t have to subtract from yourself this month, or beat yourself up about all the things you haven’t accomplished, instead we’re trying to inject a more positive, healthy attitude into how we approach the coming year.

For those of you who fancy joining in, there will be plenty of ideas in our Say No To January section right here, but there are also a few suggestions to kick things off below.

For starters, instead of giving up chocolate, why not learn to make raw chocolate instead? I’ve persuaded my raw foodie sister to divulge her recipe, which I can personally vouch for and is entirely to blame for my new-found chocolate snobbery. I assure you, once you’ve tasted it, Twirl bars just don’t cut it anymore.

If you were planning on giving up alcohol, maybe sign up for a wine tasting course instead? That’s exactly what our executive editor, Steve Hull, is doing.

He’s not the only one practicing what we preach. Lifestyle ed, Poorna, is going to learn to weight train properly.

“I’ve had loads of people trying to put me off, saying it’ll be bad for my bad or I’ll bulk up like Arnie, but the experts say it is a brilliant way to look strong, and most importantly feel strong.” she says. “I couldn’t think of a better way to start the year.”

Elsewhere on our lifestyle team, Brogan Driscoll is taking up mindfulness, no doubt aided by Mark Williams’ book on the topic, which has been a must-read in the HuffPost office for the past six months.

As for me, I’m taking myself on holiday. Screw hoarding all those annual leave days until the end of the year when I’m too busy to take them. Come the second week of Jan, I’ll be practicing yoga on the beach in Morocco, while my brother-in-law hits the surf and my sister and I take it in turns to hold their baby.

Family, sun and a few downward dogs… sounds like a pretty good way to say no to January, don’t you think?

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#ptsd #posttrauma #trauma #bully

Health and Fitness – The Huffington Post
10 Inspiring Quotes to Reach Your 2014 Fitness Goals
By Marc Perry, CSCS, CPT

While losing body fat and reshaping your body is challenging, feeding your mind positive thoughts can make the challenge much more manageable.

That’s why I compiled this list of inspiring quotes, which can help propel you to success in 2014. I hope you enjoy them.

Master Your Mindset

Inspiring Quotes

1. “The greatest discovery of my generation is that a human being can alter his life by altering his attitudes.” — William James

2. “He who conquers others is strong, he who conquers himself is mighty.” — Lao Tsu

3. “Attitude is a little thing that makes a big difference.” — Winston Churchill

4. “Strength does not come from physical capacity. It comes from an indomitable will.” — Mahatma Ghadni

5. “Our life is what our thoughts make it.” — Marc Antonius

Consider writing down your thoughts when you experience sadness, or negativity. Becoming conscious of why you are having these thoughts can break the negative thought patterns. It’s not by chance that half of the 10 quotes relate to mastering your mindset. Your thoughts and your mindset determine your actions.

Create a Plan

Inspiring Quotes

6. “Failing to plan is the planning to fail.” — Alan Lakein

7. “If you don’t know where you’re going, you will probably end up somewhere else.” — Laurence J Peter

With a well defined plan of action to follow, the challenge of changing your body can seem a lot less daunting.

Take Action

Inspiring Quotes

8. “There is only one big risk you should avoid at all costs, and that is the risk of doing nothing.” — Denis Whitley

9. “We must sail sometimes with the wind and sometimes against it — but we must sail, and not drift, nor lie at anchor.” — Oliver Wendell Holmes

It’s easy to flail in the wind by pushing off decisions, but you can take action right now to change how you look and feel.

Believe in Your Potential

Inspiring Quotes

10. “In every block of marble I see a statue as plain as though it stood before me, shaped and perfect in attitude and action. I have only to hew away the rough walls that imprison the lovely apparition to reveal it to the other eyes as mine see it.” — Michelangelo

I really love this last quote, because when I look at someone who has fallen off the proverbial wagon, I see a lean, confident, and energetic person just waiting to be revealed.

This is the reason why I chose the name “BuiltLean” for my fitness company. I believe that you are built lean, it’s just a matter of realizing your potential.

Reading over these quotes every day can be a life changer. It’s hard to choose a favorite quote, but I would go with the quote by Michelangelo because it encapsulates my mission and belief.

What’s your favorite inspirational quote?

More From BuiltLean

8-Week Workout & Diet Plan To Get Lean

7 Exercises You Should Never Do

Cardio vs. Weight Training: Which Is Better For Fat Loss?

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Battle Holiday Weight Gain With PIE

Posted: December 31, 2013 in balance

#ptsd #posttrauma #trauma #bully

Health and Fitness – The Huffington Post
Battle Holiday Weight Gain With PIE
It turns out that our fears about excessive holiday weight gain are a bit excessive. After weeks of eating turkey, ham and gingerbread, and downing cranberry cocktails, most revelers only gain about one pound. And, there’s more reason for cheer: only about 10 percent of us gain more than five pounds during the holidays.

But before you stop worrying about holiday pound packing, here’s a little coal for your stocking: Research shows that overweight and obese people are the most likely to gain weight during the holiday season. This means if you weigh more, you’re at risk for gaining more.

So, what should you do to ensure that you maintain, and don’t gain weight this holiday season? Try these quick tips, which I call the P.I.E. principle.

P. Proximity is the problem. The biggest risk factor for overeating is simply being around food. This year, consider giving your kitchen a holiday makeover. Move those overflowing gift baskets, fruitcake tins and candy bowls out of arm’s reach. When it’s time for dinner, serve it from the counter, not the table (where second helpings seem to serve themselves). And, be selective about which food gifts you keep. Remember, there’s nothing more American than regifting, so if it’s not something you really enjoy, slap a bow on it and revel in the holiday spirit.

I. Indulge selectively. Good food, drink and friends (and occasionally family) are central to the holiday season. Most of us will eat too much of something, but we should try to avoid eating too much of everything. So, if you’re going to indulge, pick something — one thing that you enjoy the most. Don’t fill your entire plate, just pick that one item and have a second helping (that’s one second helping, mind you).

E. Exercise helps. This may sound obvious, but the relationship between exercise and weight loss is pretty complex (no matter what fitness centers want you to believe). Exercise isn’t the best method to help you lose weight, but it’s an excellent way to stave off weight gain. In fact, in the study I mentioned, people who were physically active during the holidays were the least likely to put on holiday weight. But, there’s no need to battle the crowds of people signing up for gym memberships. Just grab a cheap pedometer or install a free step-counter app on your smartphone. Walk at least 10,000 steps each day, moving briskly as much as possible.

No matter what scare tactics the media throws your way, remember that holiday weight gain is not inevitable. Most of us don’t gain excessively, but some of us are definitely at higher risk. If that’s you, try a little P.I.E. this holiday season and maintain, don’t gain your way to a more healthful new year.

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#ptsd #posttrauma #trauma #bully

Health and Fitness – The Huffington Post
5 Things You Probably Didn’t Know About Quinoa
The International Year of Quinoa may be coming to an end, but quinoa’s reign as one of the healthiest foods of all time will undoubtedly continue into 2014 and beyond.

If you’ve only recently jumped on the bandwagon (it’s KEEN-wah, not kwin-OH-ah), there’s probably a few things about this ancient grain you don’t happen to know yet.

Quinoa Actually Isn’t A Grain At All
quinoa plant
We cook and eat quinoa like many other grains, but, botanically speaking, it’s a relative of spinach, beets and chard. The part we eat is actually the seed, cooked like rice, which is why quinoa is gluten-free. You can even eat the leaves!

Quinoa Is A Complete Protein
A 1955 paper dubbed quinoa a superstar long before 21st century publications were touting it for its nutritional powers. The authors of “Nutritive Values of Crops, Nutrient Content and Protein Quality of Quinoa and Cañihua, Edible Seed Products of the Andes Mountains” wrote:
While no single food can supply all the essential life sustaining nutrients, quinoa comes as close as any other in the plant or animal kingdom.

That’s because quinoa is what’s called a complete protein, meaning it contains all nine of the essential amino acids, which cannot be made by the body and therefore must come from food.

There Are More Than 100 Types Of Quinoa
types of quinoa
There are roughly 120 known varieties of quinoa, according to the Whole Grains Council. The most commercialized types are white, red and black quinoa. White quinoa is the most widely-available in stores. Red quinoa is more often used in meals like salads since it tends to hold its shape better after cooking. Black quinoa has an “earthier and sweeter” taste. You can also find quinoa flakes and flour.

You Should Probably Rinse Your Quinoa
Those dried seeds are coated with a compound that would taste pretty bitter if you didn’t wash it off first. However, most modern-day packaged quinoa has been rinsed (aka processed), Cheryl Forberg, RD, “The Biggest Loser” nutritionist and author of Cooking With Quinoa For Dummies, writes on her website. Still, she writes, it’s probably a good idea to give yours a rinse before enjoying, just to be safe.

What’s The Deal With That String?!
cooking quinoa
The cooking process releases what looks like a curly “tail” coming from the seed. That’s actually the germ of the seed, according to Forberg’s site, which separates slightly when your quinoa is ready.

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7 Ways To Ease A Nasty Hangover

Posted: December 31, 2013 in balance

#ptsd #posttrauma #trauma #bully

Health and Fitness – The Huffington Post
7 Ways To Ease A Nasty Hangover
By Corrie Pikul

There’s no question that the best way to avoid a hangover is to stop at one drink (or zero), but when that—sigh—doesn’t happen, here’s what to do.

When it’s last call…
Skip the brandy, whiskey, red wine—all of which have a higher concentration of congeners, chemicals believed to worsen alcohol’s effects. Instead, stick with a nightcap with a lower concentration, such as a lager, gin or vodka. The best choice? A lemon-lime soda. A recent study from China showed that a carbonated, sugary, lemon-lime beverage (similar to Sprite or 7Up) helped liver enzymes metabolize alcohol faster, reducing the production of acetaldehyde, the toxic byproduct of alcohol and a suspected cause of hangovers. Keep in mind that this study was done in dishes and test tubes in the lab and not on real, live, intoxicated people, so experts are still hesitant to call lemon-lime soda (or anything, really) a proven “cure” for hangovers. Nevertheless, the liquid in the soda is rehydrating, and the sugar can give you some energy for the trip home.

When your friend offers you a cigarette (because she knows you only smoke when you drink)…
Tell her about this Brown University study that found that university students who smoked while drinking were more likely to wake up with severe hangovers than students who drank the same amount but didn’t smoke.

When you arrive home and get the munchies…
Root through your kitchen cupboard for a can of chicken soup. The broth will help you replace lost fluids—not to mention the potassium and salt you’ve lost while repeatedly ducking into the ladies room—and the noodles are easy to digest.

When you realize that only eight hours stand between you and your wake-up alarm…
Go home and go to bed. Research shows that sleep deprivation makes a hangover worse, says Michael Fingerhood, MD, the chief of the division of chemical dependency at Baltimore’s Johns Hopkins Bayview Medical Center. Due to the very excellent chance you’ll be woken up at least once by nightmares, nature calling or the desire for a tall glass of fresh water, the sooner you lie down, the better. (Before your next big night out, plan to spend a couple nights staying in and getting at least 7 hours of sleep.)

When you wake up and your head feels like it’s full of rocks…
Take an ibuprofen (it’s best if you already have some food in your stomach; if not, eat some pretzels or another light snack). Though scientists are still analyzing the precise mechanisms of hangovers, Fingerhood says, they have found that non steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs like ibuprofen and naproxen can ease the ache in your head—as well as in the rest of your body.

When you go to the diner for a pick-me-up breakfast…
Skip the bacon, sausage, cheese and any other greasy food you’ve heard will “soak up the alcohol.” There’s no evidence that fatty foods can make you feel better or more sober, says Daniel K. Hall-Flavin, MD, a consultant in addiction psychiatry at the Mayo Clinic—and they may make you feel queasy. If only you’d known that at dinner yesterday: Fatty foods (of any kind—burgers and cheese as well as salmon and avocado) take longer to digest, so they slow the absorption of alcohol into the bloodstream.

When the day-after is half over and you’ve only made it as far as the couch…
Go for a walk or an easy jog. Forcing your body to get moving will distract you from the achiness and heaviness it’s probably feeling, Hall-Flavin says. What’s more, exercise triggers the release of endocannabinoids in the brain, which, Hall-Flavin adds, will put a positive spin on your mood. Keep it light and easy-to-moderate, and nix any class that takes place in a 100-degree studio, like hot yoga. “You can’t sweat out the alcohol, so this type of workout will only exacerbate your dehydration—and your hangover,” Hall-Flavin says.

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