Yes, we've all been told to "sit up straight" -- or suffer the consequences of poor posture. But that's just not a particularly scary warning. So let us explain it in a way that's a little more specific: A bent spine might mean saggy breasts. (For the solution to a saggy and flabby belly, check out the all-new Belly-Melt Diet.)

Did that get your attention?

Here's how it works: When you slouch forward all the time -- like you probably do while working on your computer or driving your car -- your chest muscles actually stiffen, which pulls your shoulders forward into a permanent slump. The result: A look that's unbecoming to your bosom. Worse, hunching forward also puts more stress on your upper spine, which leads to neck, back, and shoulder pain. Did your neck start hurting one day and never stop? It's probably the result of poor posture.
But bad posture doesn't just mean slumped shoulders. When you sit constantly -- as most of us do -- the muscles on the fronts of your hips become short and tight. What's more, your glutes -- or butt muscles -- actually forget how to contract. (After all, with so much chair time, they're not being used for much of anything except padding for your hip bones.) Now, the combination of tight muscles on the front of your hips and weak muscles on your backside causes your pelvis to tilt forward. This pushes your lower abdomen outward, making your belly pooch out -- even if you don't have an ounce of fat.

If you want rock-hard abs, try this cutting-edge core complex from fitness expert BJ Gaddour, CEO of With this routine, you'll use a Swiss-ball to do three consecutive core exercises for 30 seconds each -- a total of 90 seconds. Then you'll rest for 90 seconds. That's one round. Repeat until you’ve done a total of 2 to 4 rounds. You'll not only work your six-pack muscles, but your entire core -- from your shoulders to your hips. And for a complete eating plan that'll give you abs that show, check out Travis Stork's Lean Belly Prescription.

Full Story >>

Your body has approximately 640 muscles, depending on who's counting. But just as your grade-school teacher gave special attention to the class "pets," you have an oversized affection for your biceps. They're relatively small as muscles go, and if your arm workouts don't rely much on biceps curls, they probably aren't growing much bigger.

But muscle-heads like me have never stopped doing curls. I may not put many in the workouts at my site, (we emphasize short, efficient routines for fat loss), but I've been known to throw some in at the end of my own training sessions. I truly believe that your biceps can't reach their full potential if you don't work them directly from time to time. Whether you agree or not, I'll bet you do some biceps work anyway, just to be on the safe side.

When you do, there's no reason to settle for garden-variety curls, not when your body has dozens of muscles willing to jump in and share the love. That's why I've provided five ways to upgrade one of the best arm exercises on the planet. They'll work your favorite bundles of contractile tissue while burning fat, training your core, improving your athletic power, and making you look like someone who probably was the teacher's favorite, even if you would never admit that to your classmates. (And if you're most interested in having that abs that show, check out The Spartacus Workout Evolution, the most popular fat-blasting workout in Men's Health history.)

Full Story >>

Kerri Walsh is training to win her third Olympic gold medal in beach volleyball, and for the first time, she is doing it as a mom.

Since the 2008 Olympics in Beijing, Walsh and husband Casey Jennings have added two sons, Joseph and Sundance, to the family. That has meant all the usual household changes -- less sleep being a big one -- as well as a shift in her outlook. Now one of corporate sponsorships, P&G, has her featured in its Thank You, Mom campaign that raises money for youth sport organizations across the country.

Motherhood also prompted Walsh to revise her workout strategy. Walsh had included Pilates in her regimen for about five years before becoming pregnant. Then she decided to ramp it up.

"Something was missing," she says. "I was feeling a disconnect. I felt like I hit a plateau lifting weights, and my movements didn't feel very efficient. Pilates gives you such great body awareness. When I got pregnant, I really got into Pilates because I wanted to fix all my asymmetries and deficiencies and go from there. I have a new body because of it."

Walsh, who shed 36 pounds of baby weight after each pregnancy, found that her Pilates work translated into results in competition.

"I'm a big believer in it," Walsh says. "If you have a strong core, you can do anything. You're faster, you're stronger, you jump higher. It's your foundation."

Walsh doubled her Pilates sessions to two a week after becoming pregnant for the first time, and she continues to maintain that schedule. But she says Pilates is more than just what she does during each one-hour session.

"Even when I'm not doing Pilates, when I'm doing weightlifting, cardio or circuits, I'm still implementing the Pilates lessons that I've learned and doing things the right way now," she says.

Each session is a little different, based on how her body is feeling. Sometimes it's devoted to recovery and flexibility while other sessions concentrate on building endurance and strength. "It's really cool that you can do so much in Pilates," she says.

Perhaps that constant variety is why Walsh has trouble distinguishing one aspect of Pilates that was particularly helpful during her pregnancies.

"I can't think of one that I would put above the other," she says. "I just think the whole mindset of Pilates is huge. Pilates 101 is just to use your core in the right way. A lot of us don't use every little detailed muscle in our core. We all use the big muscles in our body and don't focus on the little ones. That mindset and awareness is huge. I take that with me wherever I go. So I can't give you just one -- they're all wonderful."

It didn't long for Walsh to be a believer. She remembers after one of her earliest sessions thinking, "I'm so ignorant and I'm so inefficient in how I use my body. There's so much more power and strength inside me."

Although Walsh has been quite the devotee to Pilates, she hasn't added its friendly cousin yoga to her routine. Yet.

"One day," she says. "One day I will."

Full Story >>

It happens to the best of us. After all those hours at the gym, you're finally in great shape to meet that special someone. Then, you finally meet him or her. You wow the person with your six-pack, and three months later, you're both cuddling long past your morning CrossFit class, perfecting your lasagna recipe and bringing home cupcakes from that trendy local bakery to make her smile.

But all is not lost. Celebrity fitness expert and founder of JCORE, Jay Cardiello, who has worked with athletes in the NBA, NFL and MLB, has the moves to banish that happy fat. And guess what? You can do them with your new sweetheart. A little healthy competition and a lot of sweating is sure to keep things interesting, long past the sweatpant-clad and "Breaking Bad" marathons.

Here are ten of his favorite couple workouts:

Full Story >>

If you think kettlebells are just glorified dumbbells, keep reading. "A kettlebell's center of gravity actually shifts during the course of the exercise," says Jason C. Brown, C.S.C.S., owner of Kettlebell Athletics, in Philadelphia. In that way, it's like many of the objects you lift everyday -- briefcase, milk gallon, unruly toddler -- and repeated use provides much the same benefit: Functional, real world strength.

"Its unique shape also allows you to transition from one move to the next without putting it down," says Brown. Trainers call that "kettlebell flow," and the results speak for themselves: A greater fat-blasting, metabolism-boosting workout in less time than ever before -- with just one weight. And for more than 70 genius workouts like this, check out The Men's Health Big Book of 15-Minute Workouts and The Women's Health Big Book of 15-Minute Workouts.

Full Story >>