Seven Ways to Avoid Binging at a Buffet by Elizabeth


Cooking over the holidays has most of us to closing our home kitchens for a few days to recuperate. If you’re still entertaining family and friends, hitting up the local buffet may seem like the best way to keep everyone fed without spending an arm and a leg. Buffets are also great for New Year’s hosts who want to set up a variety of food options for people to munch on as they count down the last hours of 2013.

Whatever your reasoning may be, buffets seem like an answer to many holiday eating conundrums. However, they can create more problems than they solve, especially when it comes to your waistline. We’ve got tips from Brian Wansink, PhD, of the Cornell Food and Brand lab, as well as ideas of our own to help you navigate buffet-style eating.

Choose a smart seat
Where you sit can have a big impact on how much you eat. By sitting with your back to the buffet, you are less tempted to go up and grab another dish. You also may want to consider choosing a booth over a table. Wansink found that slimmer individuals tend to go for booths. This creates a more comfortable seating arrangement like what you would find at a sit-down restaurant, and can discourage you from eating more than one plate of food.

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7 Workout Habits You should Drop Now by Jennifer Cohen


Chances are you might have a bad habit or two when it comes to exercising.
Never fear, there’s a quick fix for even the most ingrained workout no-nos. Check out these seven workout habits you should drop: Not only will ditching these help you lose the pounds, they will help you become a more efficient exerciser.

1. The elliptical
I’m not a fan of the elliptical. Not only is it the most boring piece of equipment in the gym, it is also extremely ineffective.
First off, the elliptical doesn’t use a natural body motion to work your body. Workouts that use natural motions like running, bending, or jumping are much more effective at toning muscles. Sure, the gliding motion of the elliptical burns calories, but that’s about it.
It is also easy to slack off on the elliptical. With the treadmill you at least have to keep up with the pace you set. On the elliptical you start off with guns blazing, and 10 minutes later you are crawling along like a turtle.
You are much better off doing a 20-minute cross training circuit (burpees, jumping rope, jumping squats, etc.) than 45 minutes of slogging along on the elliptical.

If you are looking for another low impact exercise, try the rowing machine. This will get your heart rate up, and also work your upper body and back.

2. Working out for long periods of time at a moderate pace
When it comes to working out, slow and steady does not win the race. Maximize your time, people!
Instead of working out for an hour at an easy-to-moderate intensity level, step it up a notch. Challenge yourself to 30 minutes of nonstop, intense exercise. You can take 15- to 30-second breaks, but move quickly from one workout to the next. Give it 100% for 30 minutes, instead of 75% for an hour.

3. Lollygagging

You know that girl at the gym who’s always fixing her hair in the mirror? Don’t be her. Come to the gym with a time frame and a plan.
This means no wandering around, no texting your boyfriend in between reps. Come with a set workout to complete, limiting your water breaks to specific points in your circuit for a designated amount of seconds.
If this means writing down your regimen, great. Tattoo it to your arm. Whatever. Make the most of your time. Get in, get out. No one likes a gym rat.

4. Too much cardio and too little strength training

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7 Ways to Drink More Water by Daniel Wallen


You could survive for a month without food, but you’d be dead in a week without water. If knowing that makes you think staying hydrated might be a good idea, here’s 8 ways to drink more water.

1. Drink and drive.
Buy a reusable bottle (for bonus points, garnish it with stickers or decorations of some kind to make it your own) and keep it in your car. Sipping on it as you go about your day can add up depending on how much you drive; and if you find yourself stuck in a traffic jam, at least you’ll be hydrated.

You may also want to read: 8 Healthy Energy Drinks That Can Give You A Boost Without Caffeine

2. Drink on the job.
It’s easy to forget about drinking (water) on the job if you get busy working on what seems like a never-ending To-Do List. Keep a bottle of water in a visible place so you’ll remember to drink it. To keep it simple, just take a few sips every hour on the hour.

3. Coffee drinkers rejoice.
Good news for coffee fans: coffee may be included in your water tally. Before you get too excited, I’m not endorsing the daily Starbucks visit I know so many of you are fond of; you’d be better off brewing your own coffee at home. Add a dash of cinnamon, drizzle of honey, and splash of milk to improve the flavor.

4. Think about all the money you could save.
Think that $3 soda was expensive? You don’t know the half of it.

A single serving of soda only costs the average restaurant 5 to 20 cents. In other words: don’t be too thankful for those free refills (trust me, they can afford it). Don’t endorse such a mark-up by purchasing soda when you dine out; instead, order a water to get healthy and save cash. Just look at the facts:

The average American eats out 4-5 times per week; based on the assumption of 20 restaurant visits per month, let’s do some math:

20 restaurant visits per month X $3 per soda = $60 saved per month, or $720 in a year (which is more than enough to invest in an amazing experience like a cruise to an exotic country, getaway to a bed and breakfast, or trip to the beach).

5. There’s an app for that.
If you keep forgetting to stay hydrated, download a free app like Hydro that includes a water consumption calculator text reminders of your goal.

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5 Simple Steps to Getting Back to Success by Alex Blackwell


Everything started out so well.

You had this marvelous idea; your motivation was sky high.

You were full of passion; taking action was fun and easy.

But suddenly your good fortune turned sour!

Everything seemed to go wrong, nothing went as planned and your drive and motivation started fading away.

What happened? Where has all your energy and passion gone? Everything looked so easy, fun and straightforward at the beginning. Now, nothing seems to be working out.

Don’t worry, things are not as bad as they may look like…

On your way to success, things almost never turn out exactly as planned. Sometimes, you need to be ready to adapt your plans to your current circumstances. It may even be required to slightly change your direction every now and then.

In other words, you always need to remain flexible. When one way is blocked, most probably there is a different way that leads to your destination.

However, if you close your eyes and fight, struggle and push to continue on the planned route you will waste time and energy and you may never reach your goal.

Here are five simple steps that will allow you to get back on the road to success when everything seems to be falling apart:

1. Have a crystal clear vision of your goal.
Always keep the mental image of your goal in your mind. Constantly think about your goal. Feel as if it is already part of your reality.

By all means, this should not be some sort of daily “must do” exercise. Play with it and have fun. Imagine yourself having already realized your goal – this should be exciting and it should feel tremendously good.

Every now and then, your mind may tell you: “Come on, this doesn’t work, forget about it…” Dismiss those negative thoughts and put your focus back on those thoughts and visual images that correspond with the reality you would like to experience.

What you focus on long enough and with sufficient intensity becomes your reality!

2. You still need a plan.
You need to come up with some ideas on how to proceed. Of course, your initial plan will not be perfect and many of the details will change over time.
A plan provides you with a structure and it tells you what to do in order to get from where you are to where you want to go.

If you don’t know how to get started, do some research on the internet, read some books, check out autobiographies of people who already did what you would like to achieve.

This doesn’t need to be complicated. Just a few starting points. Once you start taking action, you will get new ideas, your knowledge will grow, you will meet new people… and your plan will become more and more refined.

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