Archive for April, 2009

101 Fitness and Nutrition Tips for Business Travelers

Apr 20th, 2009

By Nicole White

Business trips can throw a wrench into your health and fitness plans, as your routine will be interrupted and your resolve to work out might be weakened by spending hours on a plane or dealing with the intricacies of travel. While you may not be able to keep to your exact fitness schedule, there are loads of ways that you can adapt and work with your situation so that going away for business doesn’t mean sacrificing your personal health goals. Here are just a few suggestions to help you keep safe, healthy and fit no matter where you travel.

General Tips

These tips can help you stay healthy on the road and are still good advice even when you’re at home.

  1. Wash your hands regularly. Whether you’re in the workplace, on a plane or just wandering around in a new city, there are germs to be had in any of them. Help prevent illness by washing your hands when you can.
  2. Stop looking at the clock. If you’re trying to adjust to new time zones stop staring at that clock. It’ll only stress you out further and make it hard to get to sleep.
  3. Keep to your routines. There’s no reason to give up your healthy routines just because you’re away from home. If you go for a morning run or snack on fresh fruits keep doing this on the road.
  4. Set aside personal time. With so much to get done on your trip you may forget to spend time caring for yourself. Ensure that you take the time to tend to your health needs, even if it’s just a sort workout in the morning.
  5. Make the most of breaks. During breaks from meetings or other business issues take the time to walk around and stretch out so you won’t just be sitting in one place all day.
  6. Prep for fitness. If you know you’re going to be taking a trip make sure you’re prepared will all the things you usually use at home so that there won’t be any excuses when you arrive at your destination.
  7. Take care of your skin. Being on a plane or out in the sun can dry out your skin. Make sure to drink plenty of water and bring sunscreen or other lotion with you.
  8. Get some sunshine. Staying cooped up in an office building for days at a time isn’t good for you. Try to get outside and walk around a least a little bit each day.
  9. Don’t let business impede being healthy. While you are on a trip for business, it doesn’t have to be your only objective. Set aside time to work out, have healthy meals and generally care for your health and you’ll be more on your game in the boardroom.
  10. Avoid peer pressure. For those traveling with less than healthy companions, it can be hard to resist falling back into unhealthy habits under their influence. Fight the urge to indulge and stick with your routines no matter what someone else is doing.
  11. Reduce stress. Travel and business on the road can be a stressful situation whether you’re setting up new computer systems or trying to close a big deal. Take some time to relax and de-stress every day so you won’t get overwhelmed and seek fatty foods for comfort.
  12. Make it convenient. You’re unlikely to work out or eat right when you’re away if it’s a total pain to do so. Make your trip as conducive to being healthy as possible so you won’t get out of your healthy habits.

Staying Healthy in the Air

With little room to move and airline provided food it can sometimes be tricky to stay healthy on a flight. Here are some suggestions that can make it a little easier.

  1. Bring water. Planes are often dry and can dehydrate you, exactly what you don’t want to happen. As soon as you can, purchase a bottle of water or ask the flight attendants to bring you some.
  2. Get up and walk around. Sitting in one place for hours at a time isn’t just boring, it also burns few calories and can be potentially deadly if deep vein thrombosis develops. Make sure to take breaks to get up and walk around to prevent this.
  3. Find some leg room. If you have long legs or just need to stretch out a little more, booking a seat in the front row or emergency exit areas can be a way to gain a little extra space without shelling out for first class.
  4. Prepare for motion sickness. Many people just don’t deal well with travel. If you know you get sick on trips make sure to prepare ahead of time whether that means taking medication, not reading on the flight or staying cool so you won’t arrive feeling too sick to do anything.
  5. Chew gum. Changes in pressure can be painful. Make sure your ears adjust more easily by chewing some gum on takeoff and landing. Plus, chewing gum is a low calorie way to keep your mind off food.
  6. Wear lose fitting clothes. Make sure you stay comfy on your flight by wearing clothes that aren’t tight fitting and won’t constrict you and make you uncomfortable for the duration of your flight.
  7. Change positions frequently. Don’t spend too long in one position, even if you’re just sitting in your seat. Moving around even a little bit can be good for circulation and to keep your muscles supple.
  8. Contract and release your muscles. Why not get a little workout in while in your seat? Contracting and releasing your muscles while seated can help keep them ready to workout later.
  9. Avoid alcohol and sedatives. These two things often result in sleeping for the whole flight, something that isn’t really healthy to do. Avoid these as they can impede you from drinking enough water and getting up and walking around.
  10. Make arrangements for healthy in-flight meals. Many airlines offer meals that can be customized to your personal nutritional needs. If you’re trying to stay low-cal, consider opting for the vegetarian option instead.
  11. Prepare your own snacks. Airline snacks are not only expensive, they can also be unhealthy depending on what they’re serving. Bring your own along to make sure you stay full but with the kinds of foods you know you should be eating.

Eating Right

Going away from home doesn’t have to mean eating lots of fast food and straying far from your healthy diet. Here are some tips for making sure you eat right anywhere.

  1. Keep healthy meals in mind. If you walk into a restaurant with cheeseburgers on the mind you’re unlikely to order anything but cheeseburgers. Try to think about the healthiest option at any restaurant before you even walk in the door.
  2. Bring healthy snacks with you. Whether you’re on the plane or sitting in a business meeting, having healthy snacks can cut down on the amount of junk food you consume.
  3. Skip the continental breakfast. While there are ways to eat healthy foods here, many people opt for those that aren’t the best. If you don’t trust your ability to resist danishes or sugary cereal, avoid these breakfasts even if they are free.
  4. Limit your alcohol intake. Alcohol isn’t just dehydrating it’s also full of calories. If you’re going out with business associates try to limit your intake to a few drinks.
  5. Have at least one full meal. With a lot to take care of you may not have time to sit down and get a real meal throughout the day. Stay healthy by getting at least one meal in that’s more than a snack, evenif it’s just breakfast.
  6. Don’t buy unhealthy treats on the plane. The plane is often full of yummy but unhealthy options for snacks so resist your sweet tooth and bring your own snacks instead.
  7. Avoid all those free snacks at meetings. Along those same lines, business meetings are notorious for providing snacks like bagels, donuts and other foods that may not do justice to your usually healthy habits.
  8. Try to balance your meals. Just like you would do at home, try to balance the kinds of foods you’re eating when you’re on the road with some good amounts of each food group.
  9. Order small portions. Because you likely won’t be able to take leftovers home with you, ordering large portions may cause you to eat more than you would normally because you don’t want to waste food. If there is a smaller portion available, order that so you can avoid that situation.
  10. Try to eat at the same time as usual. While it may not always be possible if you’re stuck in the office, try to eat at the same times you normally would adjusted to whatever time zone you’re in so you won’t go too long without a meal.
  11. Let your business associates know about your dietary limitations. If you really want to stay healthy, let others around you know about your limitations so that they won’t be as likely to provide you with food options that aren’t health-conscious.
  12. Eat well before long flights or business meetings. One way to avoid unhealthy snacking is to fill up ahead of time if you know you’re going to be stuck somewhere for several hours.
  13. Skip the room service. With easy accessibility to foods of all kinds, it can be tempting to order things you shouldn’t through room service. After all, you don’t even have to get up to get it. Try to avoid this, or order healthy options if you do indulge.
  14. Get a hotel room with a kitchen. One way to make sure you’re eating right on the road is to cook for yourself. Many hotel chains offer rooms with kitchens so if you’ll be away for more than a few days consider these to keep you on track.
  15. Check out healthy choices ahead of time. If you know where you’re going look up healthy restaurants and food options before you ever get there so it’s less of a challenge to find them once you arrive.
  16. Find out about delivery services. There are some services out there, like Zone Delivery, that offer travelers healthy options brought straight to their rooms. Based on the Zone diet, these meals are balanced and can help you keep on track even when away from home.
  17. Stick to your at home diet. Just because you’re not at home doesn’t mean you can stick to the types of foods you eat when you are. Try your best to stick to your usual choices on the road.

Working Out

Not working out for several days can be a major setback in your fitness routine. Keep in shape on the road by considering these tips.

  1. Always book hotels with exercise rooms. This is fairly easy as most hotels offer at least some fitness facilities, just make sure you check when booking to make sure.
  2. Pack your workout clothes. You’re not going to work out if you don’t bring any appropriate clothes so pack your gym attire to motivate yourself to hit the gym.
  3. Explore the city. One way to see the town and get in shape is to get out and walk or bike around the city you’re visiting.
  4. Walk when you can. If you’re headed out to a nearby restaurant for a bite to eat instead of taking the rental car consider walking instead. This can be a simple way to get exercise.
  5. Plan to be active. Whether this means bringing things along that you need for your workouts or just finding out about ways to work out when you’re away, make fitness part of your travel plan and you’re more likely to actually do it.
  6. Bring along new workout mixes. Make working out in a new place more fun by bringing along a fun mix or podcast to listen to while you’re working out.
  7. Check out suggestions for on-the-go workouts. The net is full of suggestions for workout that work well on the road. Do a little research and you might find some great ideas for working out without even leaving your room.
  8. Use your own body. You don’t need tons of workout equipment to get in shape, so use what you’ve always got to stay fit no matter where you are.
  9. Be creative. Working out while away on business can require some innovation so don’t be afraid to get creative with your workouts.
  10. Get suggestions from guidebooks. Guidebooks can be a great source of information on healthy restaurants, biking and hiking paths and healthy excursions within any city.
  11. Don’t get out of your workout routine. If you’re used to working out for an hour every morning, don’t deviate when you’re on the road. It’ll make it easier to get back into the swing of things when you’re home.
  12. Take the stairs. One simple way to get exercise is by taking the stairs when possible.
  13. Find a buddy. If you’re traveling with others find out if they’re interested in working out as well. It can make it more fun and you may be more likely to work out with a buddy keeping you accountable.
  14. Plan your workouts in advance. Before you leave, plan out when you’re going to work out and for how long. Planning on sticking to a routine can help you actually do so when you get there.
  15. Be realistic. If you know you’re going to be busy from morning until night on your trip have realistic expectations. You may not be able to get through your whole workout, but let yourself be ok with only going halfway or working out every other day.
  16. Work out in the morning. With business things to attend to you may not know when you’ll be done each day. Work out in the morning to avoid being sidetracked by unexpected events in the evening.
  17. Check out gym partnerships. If you belong to a national or international chain of gyms you may be able to work at any of their facilities. Check out if there’s a branch of your gym where you’re traveling.
  18. Make it fun. You’re not going to go workout if it’s a hassle or bores you to death. Find ways to make it interesting, fun or creative to keep you interested.
  19. Look for city specific fitness. If you’re going to a city known for it’s hiking or prevalent bike paths take advantage of these opportunities. You’ll get to know the city more intimately and get fit at the same time.
  20. Use your hotel. More and more hotels are making it easy to stick to your fitness goals. Marriott Hotels offers a Fit for You program, where you can get fitness videos and equipment sent to your room. Similar plans exist at the Hilton with their Stay Fit Kits, giving guests yoga and pilates equipment.

Travel Friendly Workouts

The following are some tips for workouts and exercises that are easy to do no matter where you are.

  1. Stretch out with yoga. You only need your body and an open space to engage in yoga that can relax you, help you stay flexible and work you out all at once.
  2. Go for a jog. No matter where you go, you can workout on your own two feet by taking a jog. Those in a city may even be able to see the sights while doing so.
  3. Push-ups. Stick to the basics and do a few pushups right in your room to keep your arms, chest and back in shape.
  4. Sit-ups. You can do sit ups while you’re watching TV. Sneak in a few when you’re getting ready in the morning or before you head to bed.
  5. Take up pilates. If you’ve done pilates at home why not bring some of the exercises on the road with you?
  6. Go for a swim. Many hotels have pools so make the most of this benefit by doing a few laps.
  7. Pick up resistance bands. These are small enough to take with you on a flight but can help you get more out of a wide range of exercises.
  8. Use what you have. Have a heavy book or briefcase? See if you can fit these into your workout in your room to make it more challenging.
  9. Check out video lessons. Whether you get them from the hotel or bring them from home, video workouts can be a great way to stay fit.
  10. Use the Web. With a little internet access in your room you have loads of instructional videos right at your fingertips.

Staying Safe

Whether you’re working out or just trying to avoid injury while away, these tips are designed to keep you safe and healthy.

  1. Have travel insurance. Travel insurance can make it much simpler to take care of any health costs that might arise if you are hurt while traveling.
  2. Keep records of your allergies and illnesses with you. Since you’ll be in a new place with new people, you’ll want to make sure that you have information about any health issues that could affect you while you’re away.
  3. Stay alert. No matter where you’re working out make sure you’re staying alert to those who might pose a danger to you. If you’re feeling unsafe, find someone to walk you back to your room.
  4. Don’t run at night. Even if you’re in a well-lit area, running at night in a place you’re unfamiliar with can be potentially dangerous. Keep to running indoors at night or during the daylight.
  5. Be wary. If someone is giving you a bad vibe or if you suddenly don’t feel safe, take heed. You’re instincts are there for a reason and sacrificing a workout is worth it to keep you safe.
  6. Don’t eat anything you’re not sure about. While trying out local foods can be fun, it can also be bad news if you have allergies or a sensitive stomach.
  7. Find out local emergency numbers. Whenever possible, find out what you’ll need to do to contact someone if there is an emergency.
  8. Respect local customs. If you’re visiting somewhere particularly conservative, jogging around in short shorts or a sports bra may not be the best choice. Respect the customs of the locals and you’ll be much safer.
  9. Be alert when returning to your room after workouts. While it’s unlikely that someone would want to harm you, it has happened before. So be on the lookout for those who might follow you to your room. If you are unsure, head to the front desk to get an escort back.

Going Overseas

Traveling beyond national borders can bring its own fitness and health challenges that these tips can help you to meet.

  1. Stick to bottled drinks. In many places, the water may contain things you’re not used to drinking and can make you extremely sick which is not good for business or you. Buy or bring bottled water to avoid this.
  2. Try to eat only foods that have been well-cooked. Avoid food-bourne illness by trying to stick to meals that have been cooked enough to kill most bacteria.
  3. Find out about important vaccinations. Depending on where you’re traveling, you may need some vaccinations to prevent illness. Check with your doctor to find out if there is anything you should be on the lookout for.
  4. Bring insect repellant when in warm climates. In many places along the equator, malaria is a real threat. Take medications and minimize your contact with insects by staying away from water at night and using insect repellant.
  5. Learn some basic words in the local language. This can help you get around and help you know just what you’re ordering at a restaurant.
  6. Be cautious about where you work out. Just like at home, not every place in a foreign country is a great place to work out. Be extremely cautious and stay alert.
  7. Find out about workout availability ahead of time. Whether you want to use a hotel facility or go on an active excursion, plan it out ahead of time so there are no surprises.
  8. Use exercise to help you adjust. Working out can be a great way to help you get into the rhythms of a new time zone.
  9. Enjoy local foods carefully. Local foods are often fresher and better for you than those that are packaged and frozen. Just make sure you’re cautious about how these foods are being prepared.
  10. Be extremely careful when swimming. If you choose to swim in fresh or salt water, be careful and have someone else with you to watch out. Unfamiliar waters can be dangerous for even the most experienced swimmers.
  11. Find out what the locals do. Local people are often the best resources for healthy foods and fitness. Find out what you can do to experience local culture and stay healthy at the same time.

Fighting Jet Lag

Whether you’re going international or just to the other side of the country, you won’t be doing much of anything if you’re totally jet-lagged. Check out these tips to avoid feeling too tired to work out and eat right.

  1. Leave home well rested. Get your trip off to a good start by getting plenty of rest before you depart. Working out can help you sleep better so get in one last, good workout before leaving.
  2. Change your watch ahead of time. Help yourself ease into a new schedule and time zone by setting your clocks to reflect it before you even get there.
  3. Stay hydrated. Getting dehydrated can cause a serious lack of energy further exacerbating jet lag. To avoid this, ensure you’re keeping your fluid intake up during your entire trip.
  4. Bring an eye shade. If you want to catch a few Z’s on the plane to help acclimate yourself to the new time zone bring along an eye shade to block out any pesky light that might keep you up.
  5. Go to sleep at your destination’s normal bedtime. Whether you want to or not, try going to sleep at what is a normal time at your destination. There’s no other way to get adjusted than by repetition.
  6. Book daytime arrivals. When you can, book flights that arrive at your destination during the day. This can greatly reduce jet lag.
  7. Get out and do something on arrival. If you do arrive during the day, don’t just hang out in your hotel room. Get out and do something so you won’t be tempted to sleep and you’ll be plenty worn out to go to bed at the correct time.
  8. Eat light. Help adjust your stomach to new times for dining by eating light meals at first.
  9. Don’t consume large amounts of caffeine. Caffeine may seem like a quick fix but it can actually do more harm than good.
  10. Cut out naps. Napping likely won’t help you adjust your schedule to match your destination. Do your best to stay awake all day and you’ll be tired enough to go to bed at the right time at night.
  11. Practice your new time zone. If possible, try switching your schedule to be closer to that of your destination time zone a few days before you leave. That way you’ll have a jump start on a routine when you arrive.

 

50 Useful Facebook Apps for Healthy Living and Self Improvement

Apr 16th, 2009

By Nicole White

You may only consider Facebook as a platform for social networking and photo sharing, but its collection of apps proves that it goes way beyond the basic profile. On Facebook, you’ll find apps that can help you manage your health and fitness goals, meet new friends in real life, become better organized, learn a new language and even learn more about the passions and causes that drive you. Read on to discover 50 useful Facebook apps for healthy living and self improvement.

Fitness

Practice these sports and games online so that when it’s time to play for real, you’ll be ready for a real work out.

  1. Twenty20 Cricket: Build a cricket team and decide on strategies for different matches. You can even sell drinks to fans.
  2. Golf.com Pro Challenge: Play challenges like longest drive, closest to the pin, and putting challenge to improve your game.
  3. Football Tycoon: Coach your own football team and learn about strategy, training and more.
  4. Rugby Union: Try to make the rugby championships on Facebook with this app.
  5. What soccer position should you play?: Let this quiz help you figure out which position you should be playing on a real soccer field.
  6. Virtual Squash Player: Play squash online to improve your real-world game.
  7. LivingSocial: Slopes: Here you can manage your real life skiing progress by tracking which slopes you’ve visited and which ones you’d like to try.
  8. Ballers Network: Connect with other ball players and sports fanatics around the world to set up times to play in real life.
  9. MapMyFitness: Map and measure your weight-loss progress, running goals, and more.
  10. My Goals by Gold’s Gym: Manage your fitness goals on Facebook with this app.

Self-Discovery

From astrology to emotional IQ quizzes, these apps are all about helping you discover your strengths and interests.

  1. What Color Is Your Heart?: Discover your emotional IQ with this quiz.
  2. My Personality: Take this psychology quiz to find out how open you are, how agreeable you are, and how much of an extrovert you are.
  3. Astrology: Study your love horoscope, karma rating and daily horoscope to learn more about your personality.
  4. Traveler IQ Challenge: Quiz yourself on your travel, geography and culture IQ. It might be time to explore someplace new.
  5. How smart are you?: It’s not an official IQ test, but this quiz can show you your strengths and weaknesses.
  6. Heritage and Flags: Display your ethnic pride by using this app.
  7. What City?: Find out which city you actually belong in, based on your personality and passions.
  8. Music iLike: Explore new music, share songs with friends, and add music videos to your profile.
  9. Ticker Factory: Keep track of your goals and progress here.
  10. Am I a Liberal or a Conservative: Use this app as a way to learn more about your political and social leanings.

Education, Work and Organization

With these apps, you can become a better organized, more informed student or professional.

  1. National Geographic Video Digest: Learn more about the natural world around you by checking this app.
  2. Calendar: Stay organized with this calendar from 30 Boxes. It features SMS reminders, integration with MySpace, Flickr, Wordpress and Facebook, and more.
  3. Advanced Swedish Word of the Day: Learn Swedish day by day with this app.
  4. Sex Health Videos: Learn about sexual health here.
  5. Goodreads Books: This app integrates with the Goodreads network, letting you share reading lists with friends and discuss literature.
  6. inCircle Connections: Get job openings, network with other members, and learn about opportunities with big companies.
  7. My Merch Store: Using this app, you can design products and sell them on Facebook and Zazzle.
  8. Wordy: Learn new words by playing this game on Facebook.
  9. weRead: Post your reading lists and books you’ve read with this app. You can also start a book club.
  10. U.S. Citizen Test: Test your knowledge of U.S. history and more.
  11. Nations: Play with this app to learn what it’s like to solve your nation’s issues, lead a country, and more.

Making a Difference

Learn about charities, environmental causes and awareness groups by browsing these apps.

  1. (Lil) Green Patch: This popular app helps you fight global warming and spread awareness.
  2. Daily Motivational Quote: Get a daily motivational quote to keep you inspired each day.
  3. Pink Ribbon: Support breast cancer awareness and the Susan G. Komen for the Cure organization.
  4. Marketplace: Find charities and more on Marketplace.
  5. I Am Green: Show how green you are on Facebook using this app, which also lets you meet other environmentally conscious users and learn about going green.
  6. Causes: Causes lets you find charities and campaigns that you want to support, in categories like animals, education, environment and religion.
  7. Sea Garden: Meet friends and learn about ocean pollution with this app.

Relationships and Community

Expand your social network and learn more about the people in your community by using these Facebook apps.

  1. Zoosk: Zoosk will connect you to singles in your area via Facebook.
  2. NaughtyNotes: Keep your romantic relationship passionate and exciting by sending NaughtyNotes.
  3. Sociable: Use Sociable to find out what your friends are doing in real life.
  4. Hugs: Spread the love and strengthen your relationships by sending hugs to your friends on Facebook.
  5. The Lounge: The Lounge helps Facebook users connect in real life by first letting them get to know each other in virtual "bars," "dance floors" and more.
  6. Dopplr: Keep in touch with friends with Dopplr, which lets you update your travel plans on Facebook and your current location.
  7. Zimride Carpool: This tool lets you find safe, reliable people to carpool with in real life.
  8. Chat!: Use this tool to chat live with friends on Facebook.
  9. Birthday Calendar: Remember all of your friends birthdays with this Facebook calendar that lets you receive e-mail and cell phone alerts.
  10. Social Calendar: This app will help you stay more organized and responsible without giving up your social life.
  11. Meetups: Use Meetups to set up meetings and special events in real life.
  12. Neighborhoods: Point2 Neighborhoods shows you who on Facebook lives near you, so you can meet up in real life.

100 Best Websites to Get Fit for Free

Apr 15th, 2009

When money is tight, extras like that gym membership may not be in the budget. Just because you can’t afford to head to the gym doesn’t mean you can’t stay in shape, though. The following websites offer plenty of health advice and opportunities to exercise, eat right, and get you to a place where you look and feel great.

Fitness Social Networks

These social networks allow you to connect with others to find support as you work your way to better fitness.

  1. MyPypeline. This social network offers free fitness and training programs, a selection of free and paid fitness and health videos–including one free paid-content video, a community of supportive partners, and more.
  2. traineo. Find motivation and support to keep you motivated while getting fit. Track exercise and nutrition information and see your results on easy-to-read graphs.
  3. BodySpace. Bodybuilders will enjoy this social network where you can blog, share photos and videos, share workout and diet programs, and more.
  4. My Fit Tribe. Get videos, articles, workouts or connect through blogs, forums, and the Tribe Community at this fitness network with a tropical theme.
  5. FitLink. Keep workout journals, map running and cycling routes, research different exercises, read articles, use the free fitness tools, and find partners or activity groups to keep your motivation high.
  6. Gimme20. Find support for fitness, diet and nutrition, wellness, and injury rehabilitation as well as access to a community and fitness tools.
  7. FitWatch. Track your fitness and nutrition data, read articles about fitness and health, get popular diet plans, and learn about various exercise and workout programs here.
  8. FitTracker. Join this community and have access to tons of articles, get support with nutrition and fitness, chart your body stats, and use the tools.
  9. introPLAY. For athletes at any level, join this network to train together. Members have access to detailed tracking with over 90 sports, daily health tracking, competitive workout leagues, and lots of tools.
  10. PEERtrainer. Get in shape with the community support at this group where you can also get information on diet, fitness, and health issues.

Weight Loss and Fitness Social Networks

If losing weight is part of your fitness goal, then check out these social networks that focus on weight loss and fitness.

  1. MyBodySite.com. Plan and track meals, log workouts, set goals and watch your progress, and connect with others in this community.
  2. SparkPeople. Get tools such as meal plans, a weight tracker, calorie counter, fitness log and connect with others, watch exercise videos, and share recipes.
  3. Gyminee. Track your workouts, monitor your food intake, and connect with others in this group designed for those trying to lose weight and get a handle on their fitness.
  4. FatSecret. This community focuses strongly on food and nutrition, but also offers support with exercise too.
  5. Weight Loss Buddy. Find weight loss partners, read inspirational blogs, track your progress, and more on your journey to weight loss.
  6. Weightcircles. Join circles, or groups of people with similar interests, to find weight loss support or participate in conversations and read blogs here.
  7. Extrapounds. Track food intake, exercise, body stats, share pictures of your progress, and connect with others losing their extra pounds.
  8. Diet.com. Learn all about diet and nutrition here, then connect with others through blogs, message boards, groups, and with weight loss buddies.
  9. DietTV.com. Make an individualized plan, then connect with community for support on this site that includes the typical tracking tools as well as tools to track such criteria as water intake, health, and sleep.
  10. WeighIns. Join a weight loss challenge, meet others losing weight, keep a diet journal, count calories, set goals, get a personalized diet chart, and much more.

Nutrition and Wellness Social Networks

Eating right and staying well are important elements of overall fitness. Join these groups for support to help keep you going in the right direction.

  1. Wellsphere. Connect within specific groups such as endurance training, fitness and exercise, healthy eating, and stress management and find wellness resources near you such as routes and trails, recreation leagues, and nutritionists.
  2. Food Network. Meet others interested in food and nutrition at this social network that provides several ways to connect including blogs, forums, polls, videos and photos, and more.
  3. Green Monkey. This new social group focuses on living a balanced life with equal attention given to the physical and mental state of being. Connect with others in the online community as it continues to grow and add to the existing possibilities or find others at a physical location near you.
  4. Optimum Health Club. Connect with other members as well as experts to enhance your physical, emotional, and spiritual wellness.
  5. WellnessWeb. Working to assist members with wellness in the areas of individual, family, community, worksite, and global, this network provides events, groups, chat, videos, and more.
  6. PeopleJam. This network offers members the opportunity to make the most of their life with support, resources, and videos on such topics as portion control when dining out, compulsive gambling, and getting centered each day.

Fitness Sites

From training plans to fitness journals to exercise routines, these fitness sites will give you lots of helpful information for getting fit.

  1. Active.com. From endurance to team sports to active lifestyles, find information, events, tools, and more.
  2. Active Trainer. Get a training plan, use the free online log for your runs, and even get a personal coach (for a fee) with this online trainer.
  3. Fitnio. Use this site alone or in conjunction with the iPhone app to map your running, walking, or cycling route and all the corresponding information for each fitness session.
  4. Makeoverfitness.com. Discover exercise routines, workout plans, healthy nutrition information, and much more at this site.
  5. The Fitness Jumpsite!. Learn about managing weight, getting and staying fit, fitness equipment, nutrition, and browse the fitness library here.
  6. MyStart! Online. Geared at getting those not active started on a path to better fitness, this site helps the beginner learn how to begin a walking regimen and balance that activity with healthy eating.
  7. Fitness Zone. Read articles and get tons of helpful suggestions among the numerous fitness and nutrition categories on this site in order to reach your fitness goals.
  8. FitDay. Journal your diet, weight loss, and exercise accomplishments here to help you reach your fitness goals.

Running Sites

No matter if you are just starting out or are training for a marathon, the following running sites offer free advice, training information, and more to keep you running.

  1. Runner’s World. Find information on training, injury preventions, nutrition, motivation, running tools, events, and more specialized just for runners.
  2. Cool Running. Runners of all abilities can find help and information on training and fitness as well as tool and resources to make the most of their running activities.
  3. Distance Running Tips. This site, put together by a long-time runner and his coach with over 30 years of experience, offers tips, tools, running news, and more.
  4. BreakingtheTape.com. This resource for runners allows member to track workout information and share on their blogs.
  5. Run the Nation. Whether you are training for a marathon or a 5k, this site offers tons of tools as well as information on events to help you achieve your running goals.
  6. RunningForums.com. Join in the conversation at any of these forums to learn from others about running as well as other topics such as food and nutrition, cycling, and swimming.
  7. MarathonGuide.com. Get press releases, find out about upcoming marathons, read articles, and get great tips on gear and training at this site.
  8. Running for fitness. This site offers calculations to run at your best performance, help with heart rate training, and information for weight and nutrition management.
  9. Run Injury Free with Jeff Galloway. Get training schedules, running resources, and nutrition information at this site.

Cycling Sites

Cyclers will find the following sites helpful for staying motivated, finding events, and learning how to get the most out of their rides.

  1. bikeradar.com. Get fitness information, meet others on the forum, find out about routes and rides, or read information and news about the world of biking, both on and off-road.
  2. Bicycle Magazine Training. Read stories, use interactive tools, watch videos, and browse through categories such as beginner endurance, women’s fitness, and injury prevention on this site.
  3. Ultra Cycling. Find training and nutrition information as well as events, statistics, and records for ultra marathon cycling.
  4. cyclingnews.com Fitness. Read articles about getting fit with your cycling regimen, ask questions, and keep up your motivation by staying connected with all the latest cycling news.
  5. Bicycling – About.com. Get plenty of free information and advice about bicycling for fitness and health with the resources available here.

Nutrition Sites

From tracking food to learning about healthy choices, the following nutrition sites promise to keep you eating right.

  1. The Daily Plate. This site allows you to track what you are eating each day, count calories, and log fitness so you can find the balance between how many calories you are eating and burning.
  2. Nutrinium. Search for health and nutrition news articles with this search engine.
  3. NutraWatch Food Finder. Discover the nutrition in your food when you search for anything from fast food to vegetables.
  4. MayoClinic.com Food & Nutrition Center. Search this site for a wealth of recipes, information, and more to help you with nutrition and healthy eating.
  5. Arbor Nutrition Guide. This site provides links to tons resources on a variety of food and nutrition topics.
  6. fealth. This search engine focuses specifically on health and is a good place to search for nutrition-based information.
  7. OrganizedWisdom. Use this site to find information on nutrition, health, and fitness.
  8. FoodFit.com. Find recipes tailored to your healthy choices with categories such as rich in grains, low carb, or rich in fruits.

Running and Walking Tools

For runners, walkers, and hikers, these sites offer helpful tools to enhance your fitness activities.

  1. JogTunes. Support indie artists and get great music for running, walking, and working out that matches your pace at this site.
  2. Stride Distance Calculator. If you don’t want to pay for a pedometer, this calculator can help you find the same information.
  3. MapMyRun. Use this tool to create a map of your runs, find a run, or log your training information.
  4. RunningAHEAD. Use this tool to log and track your runs and analyze them to make sure you are staying on track with your goals.
  5. Runworks Running Calculator. Enter the data from your last run into this calculator to find your level of fitness and help predict how you will do in longer races or under specific conditions.
  6. Runbayou: VDOT Calculator. Not only does this tool find your level of fitness based on your last race, but it also provides paces for five different running zones to help you create the perfect training routine.
  7. Runningmap.com. Runners, cyclers, hikers, and anyone who wants to map their routes can use this tool to save and share maps.
  8. Running4Women.com. This site offers lots of tools for women to use when training including a body mass index calculator, heart rate monitor, and a pace calculator.
  9. RunKeeper. Whether you are running, walking, or riding, keep track of your route and stats with this app that works with your GPS device.
  10. About.com Walking Fitness Calculators. These tools will help you achieve health and fitness by assisting you with target heart rate, pace, calorie and distance, and more.
  11. Walk, Jog, or Run Pace Calculator. Use this tool to determine your pace no matter what speed you are going.

Fitness and Health Tools

No matter what activities you have planned, use these free tools to make the most out of your exercise experience.

  1. Bodybuilding.com Fitness Calculators. Body builders can use this resource to help discover anything from categories such as training, nutrition, and supplements.
  2. Bicycle Speed and Power Calculator. Enter the information about your bike and the conditions of the ride to determine the power and speed of your ride.
  3. Gear Inch & Shifting Pattern Calculator. Whether you ride a multi-speed or single-speed bike, you can find out gear inches and shifting patterns based on your chain ring and freewheel specifics.
  4. Academy Swimming Ready Reckoner. Select your stroke, distance, the time it took you to swim it, and find out if you are academy, bronze, silver, or gold standard.
  5. MapMyRide. Just like the running version, use this online tool to create cycling maps, log your information, set goals and challenges, and find events.
  6. Your Total Health. Use 11 different calculators to find out anything from your body mass index to daily calcium requirement to target heart rate.
  7. Healthy Body Calculator. Plug in your age, height, weight, fitness levels, and any other information you may know about your body style to get a simple report about your overall health.
  8. Active.com Fitness Calculators. Calculate your pace, target heart rate, body fat index, body mass index, and more with these fitness calculators.
  9. Activity Calorie Calculator. Tell your weight and the duration of a specific activity and this calculator will give you the amount of calories burned for over 200 physical activities.
  10. Self.com Fitness Calculators. These calculators help find your BMI, ideal weight range, happy weight, and caloric needs.
  11. ExRx Fitness Calculators. This extensive list of fitness and health tools offers everything from body composition to male girth to risk class calculators.
  12. Health and Fitness Calculator v.1.0. Download this calculator to discover your BMI and what risks you have for size-related diseases.

Nutrition Tools

Eat healthily with these nutrition tools that offer calorie counting, ways to manage weight, nutrition information, and more.

  1. Nutritional Guideline Calculator. Whether you are maintaining, losing, or gaining weight, find out how many calories, protein, carbohydrates, and fats you need each day.
  2. CalorieKing Food Database. Find out serving size for popular foods and drinks as well as the calorie, fat, and carbohydrate information for each.
  3. Nutrition Data Daily Needs Calculator. Scroll down this page to enter your information into this calculator to discover your nutritional needs.
  4. Your Health Your Way Nutrition Calculator. Search for a particular food or add in your foods from an entire meal to find out the nutritional data for what you are eating.
  5. The Bored.com Nutrition Calculator. Browse or search for a specific food, including fast food, to find nutritional data.
  6. Workouts for Women Nutritional Calculator. Women can enter information to discover nutritional requirements.
  7. Pack a Lunch. Use this tool to determine the calories and nutrition in the lunch you pack.
  8. Fast Food Nutrition Facts Calculator. Select menu items from several popular fast food restaurants and find out the percentage of calories and fat content in each meal.
  9. NAT Tool. Determine the nutritional content of the food you eat by entering your age and gender and the food you want analyzed.
  10. KFC Nutrition Calculator. If you love KFC, then this calculator is for you. Select your menu items to discover the nutritional value of their food.

Fitness Videos

These fitness videos will help you learn about various exercises as well as benefits of exercise–and they are all free.

  1. Yoga. Learn about a new type of yoga utilizing anti-gravity techniques to learn a great exercise and fitness tool that does not stress the back.
  2. Zumba Workout. Learn about this new fitness trend that combines music, movement, and having fun for great fitness results.
  3. Home Gyms. Learn how you can create a great home gym for less than $300.
  4. Abdominal Crunch with Fitness Ball. Learn about the importance of core strengthening exercises and how to do an abdominal crunch with your fitness ball.
  5. Forearm stretches and wrist stretches for the office. Discover some great stretches you can perform during your next coffee break at work.
  6. How to choose resistance tubing. This fitness tool is gaining lots of popularity. Watch this video to find out how to choose the right one for you.
  7. Self Shape Fitness Video Series. Download several stretching videos from this series to help get yourself into shape.
  8. Squat. Learn about the benefits of doing squats as well as how to do it properly.
  9. Female Muscles. After a break, women require more time to regain muscle strength than do men.
  10. Exercise and Parkinson’s Disease. Exercise can help alleviate Parkinson’s symptoms, and research shows sometimes better than medications can.
  11. Seniors Yoga. Find out about the trend of seniors who are learning to embrace the amazing benefits of yoga for their heath and fitness.