Rowbot Fitness instructor Charles Anderson and Crew Member Stephen Ebbett challenged themselves to break two ultra-long distance world records to raise money for Open Hand Atlanta and Kidney Research UK. They set out to break the Longest Continuous Row and the Fastest to 1 Million Meters records, and accomplished both. Best Self caught up with Charles to hear how the row went, and how he and Stephen prepared for such a feat.

The Big Row

Celebration after Stephen and Charles complete the row

How long were you each able to row?

I rowed 541,700 meters and Stephen rowed 458,300 meters.

How long did it take to row the 1 million meters?

89:19:09.8 hours. I rowed for 45 hours, Stephen rowed for 44:19:09.8 hours.

What was your favorite part of this record-breaking charity event?

The response from the community (both online and offline) was incredible. We had people bringing us food during the entire event, and hanging out or rowing with us constantly. It was great. The online community also really rallied for us, sending us messages from around the world as they watched our online stream.

How much were you able to raise for Open Hand Atlanta and Kidney Research UK?

We raised $2000 for Open Hand Atlanta, and $5600 for Kidney Research UK.

How did you choose these two charities to help out?

I wanted to pick a local charity that focused on people’s health and well-being, and Open Hand is a great example of that. Stephen chose Kidney Research UK as a tribute to his father who is fighting kidney disease.

How did you prepare for the row?

Rowing. Lots and lots of rowing. In addition, we also did a lot of very planned carb-loading the week before.  We both gained eight to ten pounds to help protect our bodies during the long exertion.

Was it any more or less challenging than you expected it to be?

In some ways it was more challenging, because it is impossible to understand how long you have to sit down and do it, other than just sitting down and rowing for that long. But, in other ways a lot of the coordination pieces fell into place perfectly, and we had so much help during the event, that it was much easier to keep rowing and not worry about the small stuff.

Are there any other records you have your eye on breaking?

We’ve always got our eyes peeled for the next challenge, and I always have some crazy idea brewing, but nothing we want to lay claim to… yet.

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Garron Gore from Smokebelly BBQ is here to give his advice on how to stock your bar for your summer bash. 

Garron GoreQ: How do the drinks at a party contribute to a great get-together? 

A: The bar creates a gathering point for people to chat, and let’s face it, once the libations are flowing, people open up and have more fun. 

Q: What’s special about summer drinks? 

A: Summer drinks are made to be light, refreshing and easily accessible. Keep them ice cold, use fresh citrus and keep them coming.

Q: What are some fun summer party themes?

A: Punches! Almost any cocktail can become a punch. Stick with the classics, using great ingredients, freshly squeezed juice and good quality ice. Plus, you can batch cocktails in advance, giving you more time to mingle with your guests.

Q: What are some tips to keep a party’s drink budget manageable?

 A: Keep it simple. Get your core liquor categories down and have fun with small batched of other ingredients such as Aperol, Chartreuse and a good quality vermouth. 

Q: If someone could pick only one drink for a party right now, what would you recommend? 

A: There is nothing better in the middle of summer than a properly made Last Word. It’s tart and full of citrus, with an underlying herbal quality. Mix 3/4 oz. gin, 3/4 oz. lime juice, 3/4 oz. maraschino cherry liquor and 3/4 oz. Green Chartreuse. Shake, strain and serve. 


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Dr. Carrie Lawson from Piedmont OB-GYN answers a reader’s question about Pap smears. 

Dr Carrie Lawson


Q: What is a Pap smear, and how often do women need them? 

A: A Pap smear is a screening test for cervical cancer and pre-cancer, most often caused by the Human Papilloma Virus (HPV). We recommend the test every two to three years for women in their 20s beginning at age 21, and every three to five years, along with HPV co-testing, for age 30 to 65. Women over 65, or who have had a hysterectomy, usually no longer need to have the test, although they should continue to schedule an annual gynecological exam.  

Do you have questions for our doctors? If so, please email them to 

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Few things are as refreshing to a Southern gal as a glass of sweet tea. Now you can enjoy your tasty tea in frozen for with DeeBee’s Organics new TeaPops line. DeeBees Organics TeapopsThese chilly, organic treats are made from freshly brewed tea, naturally caffeine-free roobios (a plant often used in South Africa for herbal tea) and fruit. Plus, they’re sweetened with coconut flower blossom nectar or honey, instead of refined sugar. Try the Southern Iced Tea Flavor for a classic taste, or explore Berries N’ Cherries, Tropical Mango, Minty Mint or Toasted Coconut. Find them soon at Whole Foods Market locations or order now from their website. 


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Dr. Daniel Danyo from North Atlanta Hair Restoration answers a reader’s question about hair transplant surgery. 

Dr. Daniel Danyo


Q: Am I too young for hair transplant surgery? 

A: I am cautious about performing hair transplant procedures on young, rapidly balding patients with a strong family history. Early and aggressive hair transplants may produce an unnatural look years later. Hair transplant should wait until after the balding process stabilizes, usually after age 30. Nonsurgical options including laser light therapies, platelet rich plasma injections and medications should be considered first. 

Do you have questions for our doctors? If so, please email them to 

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This summer, enjoy a hearty salad in your food plans. With a mix of veggies, greens and protein from black beans and chicken, you and other health-conscious party-goers can enjoy a healthy option at any summer celebration. 




1 tbsp. barbecue sauce 

1 tbsp. fat-free plain Greek yogurt 

3/4 tsp. ranch dressing/dip seasoning max 


4 cups chopped romaine or iceberg lettuce 

4 oz. cooked and chopped skinless chicken breast 

1/4 cup chopped tomato 

1/4 cup peeled and chopped jicama 

1/4 cup canned black beans, drained and rinsed 

1 oz. chopped avocado 

2 tbsp. sweet corn kernels 

1 tbsp. chopped cilantro 


To make the dressing, combine barbecue sauce, Greek yogurt and ranch seasoning in a small bowl. Add 2 teaspoons of water and stir until uniform. 

Place all salad ingredients in a large bowl. Top salad with dressing or serve dressing on the side. 

- Courtesy of “The Hungry Girl Diet’ by Lisa Lillien, 


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While the motivations for hair removal have changed from prehistoric times to current day, one thing remains consistent – we are always looking for the best ways to smooth down. How-to-get-smooth-legs-this-summerAnd of all the ways available to us, the more permanent and painless they are, the better. Here’s a countdown of your top five options. 

5. Shaving is the oldest form of hair removal. Prehistoric cave walls show man using clam shells, flint blades and even shark teeth to shave, but it wasn’t until 1915 that Gillette invented the first razor specifically for women. While still the quickest and easiest way to remove unwanted hair, shaving only provides a temporary solution to hair removal. 

4. The Romans used resin, pitch of bat’s blood for their waxing. Today, thankfully, we are less experimental with the ingredients, and the result is a semi-permanent removal of hair by the roots. The results last a few weeks, and eventually, follicle damage will prevent some hair from growing back.  

3. Ancient Egyptians like Cleopatra started the sugaring trend by using a mixture of sugar, oil and lime juice to remove hair. Today’s version of that mixture is similar to the original, just swapping honey for oil. Unlike waxing, sugaring removes hair in the same direction of the hair growth, resulting in less pain and less hair breakage. Sugaring also cuts down on ingrown hairs by exfoliating while you remove the hair, and the results last about as long as waxing. 

2. In 1875, opthalmologist Dr. Charles Michel first used rudimentary electrolysis to treat ingrown eyelashes. Modern day electrolysis removed hair with a sterile probe and a low level current, and today it works on every hair and skin type. It has been proven a safe and permanent hair removal method for decades, but it can still be painful and may require more than one session. 

1. Laser hair removal has been around since the 1960s, but was not approved by the FDA until 1997. This highly concentrated laser light is beamed unto the hair follicle. The pigment in the follicle absorbs the light, and the light destroys the hair. Multiple treatments may be necessary. The latest lasers work on almost all skin types and hair colors, though blonde, gray or white hair may be less affected by the treatment. Despite those few drawbacks, this fast and efficient method of hair removal has become one of the most popular cosmetic procedure in the U.S. 

Contributed by Angel Maynard 

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Every Saturday this month, catch a free night of entertainment at the Mall of Georgia‘s Village Amphitheater. Local bands like The Woody’s, Brent Gafford Band, Hill Street Roots and Asphalt Cowboys kick off the night at 6:30 p.m. Mall of GeorgiaBefore the sun sets, let the kids check out the bounce houses and food and drink vendors in attendance. Then settle in with your lawn chairs and blankets to enjoy a movie projected on the 35-foot big screen. Watch summer hits such as “The Great Gatsby” on July 19 and “The Lego Movie” on July 26. 

Details: 3333 Burford drive, Buford, GA, 

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Single Atlanta‘s Lisa Lyngos is here to give you her best advice about how to throw a party that will get your friends mingling. 

Lisa LyngosQ: How does the social mix at a party contribute to a great get-together? 

A: The social mix is very important with small parties. If the guest list is primarily married couples, include a few single people. Save guests with big personalities for larger events where they do not distract and are able to blend in. 

Q: What are some fun summer party themes?

A: Summer is all about fun, and the weather says “Let’s party!” Have a Picnic in the Yard party where you place quilts in the lawn and serve fried chicken and lemonade, or a Movie Night party where you project a movie on the house on a large sheet or the garage door. Have neighbors bring lawn chairs, and order pizza! 

Q: What are some tips to keep party guests mixing and mingling? 

A: To keep guests mingling, be sure to station food and drinks in different locations. This helps give the party a better flow. 

Q: Who should be on the guest list for any party? 

A: I like to include single people at my parties. Their lives are less routine than couples, especially those who have children. Single people bring energy, excitement and stories to the mix! 


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There are common misconceptions when it comes to health food: it either tastes like cardboard or the small portions leave you hungrier than when you started. This is simply not the case, and True Food Kitchen is doing its part to help dispel these misunderstandings. Their first Southeastern restaurant opened at Lenox Square Mall in June. True Food Kitchen’s menu is based on Dr. Andrew Weil’s anti-inflammatory diet for optimal health.true food kitchen

“We strive to promote a healthy lifestyle by combining seasonal, fresh ingredients with global flavors,” said Sam Fox, founder of Fox Restaurant Concepts, “enabling our guests to feel good while enjoying honest food that tastes really good.”

The menu, which draws inspiration from a number of different food cultures, features grass-fed beef, sustainably raised fish, organic dairy and vegetarian, vegan, organic and gluten-free options. TFK also takes advantage of seasonal fare by rotating their menu to offer diners the fresh tastes of the season. They only use the most nutritious ingredients, staying away from added butter, salts or fats for flavor.Dr andrew weil

The menu, designed in part by Dr. Andrew Weil, was created to prevent chronic inflammation in diners. He incorporates anti-inflammatory foods into each menu item and avoids pro-inflammation foods, like refined oils and carbohydrates.

“We use anti-inflammatory olive oil, serve omega-3 rich fish, use anti-inflammatory spices like ginger and turmeric, and serve plenty of protective vegetables of high quality,” said Weil, who finds the omega-3 rich fish and extra-virgin olive oil to be the most beneficial for our bodies.

On the menu, Atlantans can expect to find year-round favorites like the turkey lasagna, Pangang curry and the “inside out” quinoa burger. You can also find Dr. Weil’s personal favorites, the Tuscan kale salad, the steelhead salmon and the spaghetti squash casserole. When I visited, I enjoyed the red chili shrimp, the caramelized onion tart and the flourless chocolate cake, all wonderful and fresh.

Red chili shrimp true food kitchen

Red chili shrimp…delish!

True Food Kitchen not only offers its diners a wonderful dining experience, but they also have a full bar stocked with sustainable, organic or bio-dynamic wines and cocktails. They also have their own non-alcoholic “natural refreshments,” made from juice, herb and vegetable blends.

Every True Food Kitchen restaurant is also Green Restaurant Certified and uses compostable take-out packages and menus that are printed on paper from renewable resources. Each dining room also features chairs that are made out of recycled plastic soda bottles and reclaimed wood floors.

Details: 3393 Peachtree Rd. NE, Suite 3058B, (404) 481-2980, 

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