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Tamer trends: You can stay fit in less outlandish fashion in 2013

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I N the 1970s, you hung upside down on an inversion table.

In the 1980s, you bounced your stretches while decked out in spandex and legwarmers.

A decade ago, you banished bread and bananas from your life, fearing all starchy carbohydrates.

The good news for 2013: Health and fitness trends aren’t as outlandish as they once were.

Now that you’re planning your health resolutions for the New Year, why not explore something new?

Here are my predictions for the upcoming year:


Barre classes

Celebrities from Kelly Ripa to Madonna are reported fans of barre classes, the latest fitness craze to hit hard in New York, California and Vancouver. As the name suggests, the classes involve the use of a ballet barre — a stationary rail typically used during ballet warm-up exercises. These ballet-inspired classes borrow from yoga and Pilates and are accessible to anyone of any fitness level who wants to increase flexibility, strength and balance. This class is cardio-based and use small, isometric movements to tone the whole body. In Winnipeg, look for barre classes at Moksha Yoga. The Waverley Street location will offer barre classes in the new year.


Circuit training

In 2013, people will expect more out of a workout in less time. That’s where circuit or interval training comes in. Typically, a circuit is a group of strength and cardio exercises completed quickly, intensely and in sequence before resting for a short period and continuing onto another circuit. Experts say this time-saving method of workout is effective because it combines strength and cardio training, revs up your metabolism and keeps your body from getting used to an exercise. Look for circuitinspired classes at gyms. Or make your own circuit, using your gym’s cardio and strength machines. You can also create a circuit using no equipment at all.


Wellness coaching

Wellness/life coaches claim to provide guidance in helping you achieve your life goals — whether they involve your career, your physical fitness or your mental health. In the upcoming year, look for wellness coaching to take off. But buyer beware: the industry is unregulated, though legitimate organizations do offer wellness coaching classes and certifications. When hiring a wellness coach, ask to see certifications and request a list of current and former clients whom you can call for unbiased reviews.


Workplace health

More employers are realizing a healthy employee equals a more productive employee. In 2013, the trend toward a healthy workplace continues. That means more company cafeterias will offer nutritious meal options and more companies will offer onsite gyms or corporate discounts for gym memberships. Also on the rise at the office: fun workplace weight-loss programs with incentives and prizes. If your workplace hasn’t jumped on board yet, gather some co-workers and start your own healthy lunch club.


Zumba trips

After years on fitness trend lists, zumba is still alive and kicking its way across the world. The Latin-fusion dance classes set to upbeat music can be found just about everywhere. What will be different in the upcoming year? The emergence of zumba vacations — tropical getaways organized by your local zumba instructor. Expect your zumba trip to happen on an allinclusive resort with your teacher offering daily outdoor zumba classes. This is part of a movement towards active vacations, in which couples and groups of friends decide to hike, canoe or ski during their trip rather than lying around on the beach all day.


Carb control

Dr. Robert Atkins made the idea of carbohydrate control popular. The late doctor and diet book author felt sugar — even in the form of foods like bread, carrots and fruit — was making us fat, not sour cream and steak. Carbohydrate awareness will continue to be popular in 2013. But things have changed. People will embrace the so-called "good" carbs found in whole grains and high-fibre fruit. Dietary fat will also be deemed a good thing — as long as it’s from sources such as fish and avocado rather than bacon and ribs.



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