Reading health and fitness magazines each month encourages me to maintain focus on my goals. Having titles like Women's Health, Shape, Fitness, Health and Self on my magazine rack is a visual reminder to continue positive momentum throughout the year. While each publication has beneficial features, I will outline my favorites.
Women's Health is my top pick. With its newsy and informative content, I am guaranteed to learn something about nutrition in every issue. I appreciate the well written articles and the amount of research required to put together a magazine filled with health and nutrition facts. The motivational tips are presented in an accessible style that doesn't underestimate the reader's intelligence.
I am excited for the direction Shape is taking in 2012. The magazine brought on a new weight loss diarist, Yasmin Rammohan, who has an affirming self view and wants to incorporate diet and exercise as part of her positive lifestyle changes. I think her attitude is a fantastic start and I'm looking forward to reading about her progress each month. I am enjoying the Workout of the Month feature with travel friendly, tear out sheets in lightweight cardboard. I appreciate the suggestions Shape offers for healthy substitutions for traditional menu favorites.
Fitness consistently shows a variety of moves to keep your workout routine interesting. The visuals of portion controlled meals are useful to put serving suggestions and restaurant menu items into proper perspective. I appreciate that Fitness is devoted to featuring healthy, non-models of various sizes.
If you want to learn about creating a balanced diet and the benefits of specific foods, Health can get you started. There are articles each month about the links between nutrition and disease prevention. This magazine is a great resource to understand how the foods we choose affect our overall wellness.
Self magazine is a fusion of health and fitness with trends in beauty and fashion. A fun read with a lighthearted approach to self care, this publication will entertain you with celebrity interviews and destination fashion shoots.
While all five publications offer useful tips on diet and exercise, I would most recommend Women's Health and Health for information on nutrition and meal planning. Shape and Fitness showcase updated workout moves to add to your routine to keep it fresh and effective. Self blends wellness with style.
I'll give Oxygen an honorable mention. I appreciate the articles on eating a clean diet. The magazine has a strong training focus and is well suited for ladies who are interested in weight lifting for competition or are devoted to strength training. I will likely pick up the occasional copy at the bookstore.
If you choose to purchase or subscribe to any of these magazines, don't be taken in by the advertisements for diet pills, weight loss vitamins or shakes. These publications are for profit; Their content doesn't mirror their advertising. You will find thoughtful articles about sensible meal plans side by side with ads for protein powders promoting fast weight loss. I understand they need to stay in business and limit my interest to the articles and features.
Occasionally, I have trouble with the format of success stories. The momentum of these articles shows women who report vast changes in their self confidence and lifestyles before and after weight loss. There are unflattering descriptions about their weight gain such as how they ballooned or packed on pounds.
I think the editors need to do a better job presenting success stories with respect to women's bodies of all shapes and sizes. I can still appreciate the tips in these articles and the work these women have done to succeed in their goals. I would prefer the focus of the stories to be more positive start to finish. The message that weight loss will change your life dramatically is incomplete at best. A focus on health and fitness needs to be accompanied with ongoing attention to self esteem and self care.
When I began Health and Whimsy, I was mindful that I wanted to let my confidence and good feeling show each week. I don't feel any need to put myself down for past choices or exalt myself for my current behavior. I'm simply living my life and I am happy with who I am today.
This past week had been positive for me. I am down another pound, with 24 pounds lost since since September 1st. While I am enjoying the muscle toning workouts from #P90X, I am planning to get out power walking this week and take part in the lovely, unseasonably warm January. I am going to mix in the DVDs with walking.
To adhere to my resolution about reducing the amount of cheese I consume, I decided not to buy any until after March 1st. There is enough cheese in my fridge to enjoy over the next few weeks if I am careful. I already began switching out servings with soy cheese. As much as I prefer whole foods over processed (and the majority of soy products are considered processed or functional foods), dairy cheese consumption isn't the best for weight loss/maintenance or heart health.
Do you read health and fitness magazines? Which are your favorites? How are you doing with your New Year's Resolutions?
Health and Whimsy is intended to be a journal of my personal experience. Be sure to consult your doctor before making any changes to your health regimen.
Happy painting, ladies!