Hoops is a game of attrition, a fact that becomes painfully clear every March. The strongest, healthiest, and best-conditioned teams are the last ones standing. So to help you elevate your game, we recruited 16 of the NCAA's top strength and conditioning coaches, whose teams often play long after everyone else has gone home. Use their favorite training tricks and tips to pick up your performance. But the real reward is this: These routines blast fat and build muscle. Who says your best days on the court -- and in front of the mirror—are behind you? (And if you really want to elevate your game, try The Super-Athlete Workout.)

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Death and taxes. According to our ever-insightful forefather Benjamin Franklin, these are life's only guarantees, and while I respect a man who can rock a good pair of bifocals, I think ol' Ben left an important certainty off the list -- a threat that comes each and every year and instills terror in the hearts of millions of Americans, causing them to scream, sweat, and run (literally) for their lives.

I'm talking about swimsuit season! Every spring, as the summer months loom, America's parks and gyms are flooded with masses of sweaty bodies, all with a single motivation in mind: Look good enough by Memorial Day to feel comfortable getting half-naked in front of complete strangers.

And all this exercise is certainly a good thing for our country's health: A recent American Journal of Preventive Medicine study predicted that 42 percent (!) of Americans will be obese by the year 2030, and research shows that physical activity is one of the best ways to keep the pounds at bay.

So with fitness in the air, now is the perfect time to dig up the facts on the best and worst drinks for your workout. There are tons of sports beverages on the market promising to help you lose weight, run faster, and jump higher, but many of these claims are nothing but bogus marketing ploys. And not only are some of those bottles and cans filled with empty promises, but they're also brimming with empty calories that could undermine your hard-earned workout gains. Read on for five exercise-enhancing beverages that can help quench your thirst, boost your performance, and support you on your journey to swimsuit six-pack-dom.

(Want must-have nutrition info, food swaps, and breaking health findings delivered straight to your inbox? Sign up for the Eat This, Not That! newsletter.)

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Featuring the world's top men's and women's players, the Sony Open in Key Biscayne, Fla., offers one of the most fan-friendly venues in all of tennis. The Tennis Center at Crandon Park is a great spot for watching -- maybe even meeting -- your favorite players. Here are tips on how to best enjoy the Sony Open (or any other live tennis tournament, for that matter):

-- Sam Lieber is ThePostGame's Chief Technology Officer (and Chief Tennis Officer). He is a former high school All-American and an NCAA Division I player, and is a USTA league national champion. Follow him on Twitter @samlieber.

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By Megan Taylor Morrison
The Active Times

While the public may glamorize celebrities, the truth is, they are as stressed out as the rest of us -- maybe more so. Fitness and appearance are mandatory items on the checklist, so diet and exercise -- and the high-profile results -- can be just another source of anxiety. So, when it comes to staying in shape, many celebs want one thing: Simplicity.

Harley Pasternak, M.SC., is known for a simple, effective approach to fitness and nutrition that he details in his new book The Body Reset Diet. Over the years, he's honed his methods on clients including Kim Kardashian, Amanda Seyfried, Megan Fox and Hilary Duff, who sing his praises on the back cover of the book. Refreshingly, Pasternak's take is that we've gone "way overboard" with our methods, and that there are simpler ways to achieve health and fitness.

We caught up with Pasternak over the phone to hear about his top fitness tips for anyone trying to get in shape (and see the initial results quickly!). For the Pasternak basics, check out our slideshow below.

For the complete slideshow of Low-Stress Fitness Secrets, go to TheActiveTimes.com.

More Stories from The Active Times:
-- The Active Times 50: The Best Outdoor and Endurance Athletes in the World
-- 11 Best New Fitness Tech Gadgets
-- Expert Advice: The Best Recovery Drink
-- The 3 Best Core Exercises for Runners

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    Eye of the Tiger

    By Survivor.

By DualFit.com

It's rare to see anyone working out alone at the gym without headphones. Music is a great motivational tool to help push you through a workout.

Music can have such a great effect on your mood that it could increase your endurance. Having great endurance will help keep your heart rate up, your blood pumping and you moving. If you are feeling lazy and tired during the workout, it could be because you aren't listening to music ... or the right kind of music.

Clearly listening to loud, upbeat music will make you work harder than soft, slow music. When creating your gym playlist on your iPod, make sure to fill it with upbeat and motivational songs.

But lyrics can also go a long way. Some of the best top 10 workout songs to motivate people have lyrics that are extremely motivational. A lot of songs send messages about pushing through hard times and not giving up. That is the perfect message for working out. Most of the time, people don't want to be in the gym.

Exercise To Undo Hours Of Sitting
Dual Fit
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    Listerman Friar Bacon
    Host city: Dayton, Ohio

    Dayton's star has risen as the host city for the tournament's play-in games and one of the site's for its East regional match-ups, but it still has a long way to go to catch up with Ohio's other brewing towns.
    Home to a huge Boston Beer Samuel Adams brewery in Cincinnati and the home of powerhouse craft brewers such as Great Lakes Brewing, Ohio knows its beer. Unfortunately, Dayton is still kind of feeling its way around.

    Listerman has been fighting the good fight as a small brewery since 1991, though, and has supplemented its income by selling home brewing equipment since 2008.

    During that time, it's also produced this smoky rauchbier that gets its roasted flavor straight from the grain and malt, pulls a little more maple flavor out of said malt and hits a drinker with just a little hoppiness at the finish. At 7 percent alcohol by volume, this amber beauty is going to be downright beastly for fans who enjoy their beers light, fizzy and bought in pairs during game breaks. But it's a must-drink brew that's a great -- if gimmicky -- example of Dayton's brewing potential.

By Jason Notte
The Street

It's March Madness, and you know what that means: Pretending beer doesn't exist. At all. Whatsoever. And certainly not around colleges.

Exercise To Undo Hours Of Sitting

Harvard pulled off the biggest shocker of the NCAA tournament Thursday by knocking out No. 3 seed New Mexico, 68-62. Then No. 15 seed Florida Gulf Coast claimed that distinction Friday with a convincing 78-68 win against Georgetown.

Florida Gulf Coast became the seventh No. 15 seed to win bump off a No. 2 seed, and the third in the past two seasons. The first time that a No. 15 seed beat a No. 2 was 1991 when Richmond derailed Syracuse. Florida Gulf Coast didn't exist as a school until 1997.

Harvard's win was the 17th time that a No. 14 seed has beaten a No. 3 seed since the tournament field expanded to 64 teams in 1985, so an upset coming from this part of the bracket is hardly an unprecedented development.

But sometimes the upset is about more than strictly the number of the seed. It has about the perception of the two teams, and Harvard brings plenty of decidedly non-basketball stereotypes to the table, Jeremy Lin notwithstanding.

Here's a look at notable first-round upsets in which second, third and fourth seeds went down in stunning fashion.

Dads And Basketball

By Brian Berkovitz
The Active Times

We've all been there: It's a busy afternoon at the office and you've only got twenty minutes for lunch. You want something healthy and fast, and then you see it: The smoothie shop. In the realm of good nutrition, smoothies are always a safe bet ... right?

In a mixed-up world of calorie counting and muscle building, of antioxidants and vitamin concoctions, many smoothies mask unwelcome ingredients. We've come up with a list of six deceptive additions, as well as four others that will deliver the health and energy you're looking for.

For instance, did you know many protein powders can harbor harmful toxins, or that one popular milk-alternative could have harmful effects on your body? We'll also address some misconceptions. Is peanut butter good for you? And how do frozen fruits rank against their fresh counterparts?

Based on our research, we recommend you take a careful look at the ingredient lists at your favorite smoothie spots, and never be afraid to ask to see food labels.

For the complete slideshow of the good and bad of smoothie ingredients, go to TheActiveTimes.com.

More Stories from The Active Times:
-- Fit Phone: The 10 Best Fitness Apps
-- Dream Machines: 14 Insanely Expensive Bikes
-- Fitness Fads from the 1950's to Now
-- 12 Eco-Friendly Travel Tips

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The 75th anniversary of the NCAA men's basketball tournament provides more reason than usual to think about the shooting stars the Big Dance has produced over the years. We update the current whereabouts of 30 one-hit wonders who helped make March Madness what it is today.

More from Lost Lettermen: Top 10 Most Hated College Basketball Players Ever

Dads And Basketball

There is no real shame in this list, because to be on it, you needed to have been national champions in the first place.

But it is rare for a team to go from NCAA champions one season and missing the tournament completely the next.

Since the tournament expanded to 64 teams in 1985, it has happened just five times with the Kentucky Wildcats joining the club this year.

Here's a look at the teams to experience this high-low swing:

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