We are thrilled to welcome 2012 and here at Healthy Living, we've been enjoying a great deal of change. Personally, I'm celebrating the great fortune of becoming the new nutrition and fitness editor. Though much of my role is to focus on diet, I can't help but think of another form of consumption: what we read about nutrition, fitness and wellness. Along with a steady diet of leafy greens, whole grains and healthy fats, I stick to my daily regimen of digestible health blogs.
The concept of a fitness and diet-based New Years' resolution that dissipates by March has become such a trope, that we often expect failure of ourselves. As we've already suggested, it is possible to stick to a resolution throughout the year, making permanent change. But, before you even get there, it's worth congratulating yourself on a job well done for simply spending some time thinking about your wellness. In fact, what if we re-framed the ritual of making resolutions? Instead of making dramatic change on January 1 the goal of our reevaluations, we could agree that the evaluation is the destination. For me, part of meditating on my fitness and nutrition habits includes reading the work of others. These eight blogs teach me new techniques, help me interpret the science and inspire me to include more effort and joy in my endeavors. I hope they do the same for you.
Though it launched less than a year ago, Greatist has quickly become a go-to fitness blog with clear, easy-to-understand advice and features on everything from banishing depression with a workout schedule to weighing the pros and cons of working with a personal trainer.
This wonky site will nourish your science nerd side (yes, you have a science nerd side) with headlines like "How Neutrophils Boost (Or Weaken) Your Immune System After Exercise" and "Lactate At Threshold Doesn't Predict Performance." But don't let the graphs and medical language intimidate you, Alex Hutchinson -- a fitness columnist for Canada's Globe and Mail -- does an impressively good job of taking complex academic studies and explaining them to the lay audience.
Outside magazine is good for long reads on a number of subjects, but their fitness section does something wonderful: it combines important exercise news and discoveries with a healthy dose of wanderlust imagery. Come for the 10 biggest fitness myths, stay for the photos of arctic surfing.
Fit Bottomed Girls
The ladies at fit bottomed girls try new workouts ("Pilates on crack," anyone?) and fitness DVDs so you don't have to. Their reviews are organized by workout type, including everything from yoga to CrossFit and they've even launched a mom-specific site to help new mothers revamp their fitness regimens.
With easy-to-use fitness routines you can do at home and tips on everything from properly tying your running shoes to picking out the best yoga mat, FitSugar -- part of the Sugar Inc family -- is a great resource. I'll be using their video series to try new moves and perfect my form.
You might already know the magazine, but Whole Living's website is full of great nutrition and exercise tips that focus on holistic well-being. Find out which yoga postures boost mood the most or learn how to exercise based on your age group.
Heidi Swanson is the author of two cookbooks, but she shares near-daily vegetarian recipes on her website, emphasizing healthy, alternative fats like coconut oil and oft-overlooked whole grains like amaranth and farro. She experiments with gluten-free and vegan recipes, making it a great source for people on special diets. Not only are her dishes delicious and healthy, they are surprising, unique and innovative. And if one of your goals is to replace basic cooking supplies with more nutritious versions, her Build a Natural Foods Pantry guide will be your bible.
My New Roots
Sarah Britton is a holistic nutritionist and vegetarian chef living in Copenhagen, where she cooks at two organic restaurants. Many of her recipes are raw, vegan or gluten-free and everything is restaurant quality. She still manages to slip in important nutrition information, even while being whimsical: a recent black-bean chocolate cookie recipe was so deliciously photographed, she managed to slide in information about the beans' antioxidant properties without sounding didactic.
Follow Meredith Melnick on Twitter: www.twitter.com/MeredithCM