Staff Health Challenge: Cooking 101
By Dorkys Ramos | 06/17/2009 - 15:05

I never learned how to cook like my mother: a pinch of this, a dash of that and somehow her sazón would come out perfect every single time. She can taste whatever is bubbling in the pot and know exactly what’s missing. Not me.

Growing up, I’d throw mini feminist rants saying, “I’m never becoming a stay-at-home mom to cook for a man!” It would only be fueled by my dad’s old-school claims that once I get married, my husband was going to bring me right back as soon as he learned that I couldn’t cook. “Well then I’ll marry a chef!” I’d say.

Read more
61509tstaffhealth_article copy.jpg
Staff Health Challenge: My New Best Friend
By Angie Romero | 06/15/2009 - 13:20

Something my trainer Marc said a while back stuck with me: I need to stay “within my target heart range” while doing cardio. I always thought my body would just intuitively know where that was and choose to chill there, and that the more tired and sweaty I felt during a run, the better. But that is not the case. In fact, one needs to stay between 60 percent and 80 percent of the maximum your heart can beat (aka your maximum heart range)—no more, no less.

Read more
Staff Health Challenge: Back on the Wagon
By Mariela Rosario | 06/12/2009 - 12:30

So the last two weeks in NYC have been absolutely miserable and I hate to admit it, but I've totally fallen off with my workouts! Luckily, its supposed to be sunny this weekend and I'm going to use the respite to get my butt back into motion by taking a run in the park. Even though I've managed to keep the weight off without my regular workout routine for the last two weeks, I really miss the way that keeping my body active made me feel—especially the extra energy and the strength I had begun to build.

Read more
Working Out with Kettle Bells
By Dorkys Ramos | 06/11/2009 - 15:45

A kettle bell is a traditional Russian weight made from cast iron that kind of looks like a cannonball with a handle! They might look funny, but kettle bells can yield serious results. They help tone and strengthen muscles while burning fat, and they’re also great for cardio routines and working out your core. Just keep safety in mind: Start out slow with a light weight, until you learn how to use it properly. This means keeping your head aligned with your body, your shoulders back, chest forward and elbows and wrists straight. And don’t drop it on your foot!

Read more
Staff Health Challenge: Unexpected Workout
By Dorkys Ramos | 06/10/2009 - 15:20

I have a confession to make: I’ve never had a proper workout regimen. I figured that with all of the speed-walking I do around NYC, climbing up and down stairs in the subway and living in a fourth floor walk-up, I was getting more than enough exercise. In fact, for a while I thought I should aim for less physical activity so I wouldn’t waste so many precious calories!

Read more
Staff Health Challenge: Guilt-Free Drinking
By Angie Romero | 06/08/2009 - 18:00

This is a tough one. Not going to lie. I’m home in Ecuador on vacation. I came here for a dear friend’s wedding and, as you can imagine, everyone is trying to feed me, particularly that liquid diet, if you know what I mean.

Read more
Staff Health Challenge: A Better Burger
By Mariela Rosario | 06/05/2009 - 15:55

One of the things that totally freaked me out about joining this health challenge was a fear that I was going to have to deprive myself of things I really, really love. Like wine, chocolate and my all-time American fave: The Burger.

Whenever I am feeling down and out or just need something to make me feel like a school kid again, I'll indulge in the delicious and tasty treat of a burger and a chocolate shake. But when I checked the calorie content of that meal, I literally almost had two heart attacks in a row.

Read more
How to Enjoy Flowers and Stay Allergy Free
By Dorkys Ramos | 06/05/2009 - 09:00

Beautiful flowers are always a quick way to brighten up your home, but what do you do when allergies leave you terrified of incorporating them into your decor? Turns out, you don’t have to avoid them all. So grab a bouquet and breathe easy knowing you can enjoy your blooms, too!

“Strong fragrance can be an irritant to the nose and can cause allergy-like symptoms but may not trigger allergies,” explains Dr. Clifford Bassett, diplomat of the American Board of Allergy and Immunology. “However, male plants often cause more of a reaction to those who are sensitive to pollen.”

Read more
The Truth About Achieving Toned Abs
The Truth About Achieving Toned Abs
By Mariela Rosario | 06/04/2009 - 09:30

When it comes to getting a flat tummy, every girl feels pretty much the same: You work out and work out, but the little flab around your mid-section won't budge! So we went straight to the authorities to find out what can be done, once and for all, to get those elusive toned abs. Here's what nutritionist Christina Persaud and fitness expert Phoenix Carnevale had to say:

What are the best exercise moves and diets to follow if you want flat abs?

Read more
Staff Health Challenge: Me? Anorexic? Nah…
By Dorkys Ramos | 06/03/2009 - 14:15

Over the course of a rough 2008, I lost an alarming 10 pounds. Not much to some, but when you’re already treading through underweight territory, it can be downright dangerous.

My wake up call finally came late last summer, the morning after I’d weighed myself in at 76 pounds. I nearly blacked out in the middle of the street on my way to work and spent the rest of the day in the hospital. As bad as my immediate diagnosis was (a scary combo of starvation, dehydration and exhaustion that lowered my blood pressure), I had a tougher pill to swallow several weeks later.

Read more