7 Health and Fitness Trends to Expect in 2014

From thicker running shoes to the new Sriracha sauce, there's plenty to look forward to in health and fitness in the new year.

A recent survey found that gochujang, a fermented Korean condiment, is likely to be a popular flavor in 2014. Other health, nutrition, and fitness trends expected for the new year are high-intensity interval training, non-minimalist shoes, and more kombucha. Photograph by Flickr user KayOne73.

In 2012 we looked into our crystal ball and checked out what was in store for health and fitness in 2013. Our predictions were right on the mark, from the explosion of more themed races to the growth of Paleo dieters. Here, we anticipate seven trends to expect next year, from new exotic flavors in healthy dishes, to even more stylish workout clothes, to a new crop of running shoes that could change the face of the minimalist movement. 

More exotic flavors
Step aside, Sriracha, there’s a new spicy sauce in town. A recent survey conducted by Sensient Flavors says gochujang, a fermented Korean condiment, is going to be popular in 2014. Other flavors expected to rise in the ranks: rhubarb, green coconut, and burnt calamansi. 

High-intensity interval training
The workout that involves short, high-intensity bursts of exercise is going to be the top workout of 2014, according to the American College of Sports Medicine. However, health professionals surveyed cautioned that with the rise of this type of training comes high injury rates. 

A boutique gym for every neighborhood
Goodbye gym chains, hello boutique studios. We love that almost every neighborhood in Washington has become home to small gyms that offer group fitness classes in intimate settings. And there are plenty more studios on the way for 2014

An uprising of food-industry watchdogs
Remember the Naked Juice, Chobani, and Blueprint Juice debacles? We don’t see the trend of class action lawsuits against trendy, healthy foods ending anytime soon. 

Stylish sweatpants
Will it finally be okay to wear sweatpants in public? Big-name retailers like H&M, Old Navy, and Gap have hopped on board with their own lines of active gear, and plenty of fitness apparel companies have designed sleek workout tanks, sweaters, and pants that work for boot camp or brunch. 

More kombucha, please
The fermented, probiotic tea has been around for thousands of years, but only recently has kombucha really taken off, with local producer Capital Kombucha leading the way in Washington. If 2013 was the year of juice bars in DC, we’re thinking 2014 will be the year of kombucha bars. 

A return to non-minimalist shoes
Sales for Vibram Five Fingers have been low for years now (in 2012 Pacers Running Store stopped selling them), and by the looks of some new shoes on the market, minimalist shoes may be on their way out the door in 2014. A recent Outside Magazine article noted the growth of runners opting for the Hoka One One shoe, which features a 29-millimeter thick sole. Since 2012 the sales of the thick, clown-like shoe has soared by 400 percent.