POSTS WITH TAG: energy & fatigue

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    Whether you’re trying to lose weight, get strong, or just want to feel better, there’s one healthy habit most moms are missing. Even when you’re working out consistently and watching what you eat, skimping on sleep can derail all your good intentions.

    Yes, it's true. Sleep is the one thing all humans need to survive, and it can be the answer to lasting good health. Perhaps you remember it from your pre-kids days? It’s that activity that lasted beyond six in the morning on the weekend. 

    In case you need convincing that sleep should be a priority for you, here are four reasons sleep is so vital, as well as practical tips on getting more -- and better -- sleep.

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    You have big plans to go to the gym after work today. You arranged someone to be there to take care of the kids, you packed your gym bag, you piously said no to after-work drinks with your colleagues. Then 6 p.m. rolls around, and, well ... maybe the kids need help with their homework tonight after all. Or your boss is going out for drinks, maybe you should go along too. Or you’re exhausted after a long day, and didn’t you read somewhere that you’re more likely to get injured exercising when you’re tired?

    Chances are, you already know when you’re making excuses because you just don’t feel like working out. But are there actually times when it IS a good idea to skip the gym? Yes, there are -- and here’s the personal trainer take on what’s a valid excuse and what’s NOT.

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    I think my first son was around 18 months old when I realized I was still wearing maternity pants around the house on a regular basis. You know, just because they were soooo comfy. The scale confirmed it: the reason I was still clinging to my elastic waistbands was because I'd replaced the baby weight with the kind of extra poundage you get when you have a nightly double date with Ben & Jerry.

    I eventually embarked on a workout routine, changed my eating habits, and lost the pudge, but I've had to kick myself out of a weight-gaining cycle plenty of times since. Now that my kids are 8 and 6, they aren't nearly as much work as they used to be -- but man, parenthood sure seems to have its diet-sabotaging downsides. For example, here are the top 7 'mom excuses' I've been battling since I gave birth:

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    Reiki is something I've been hearing about for a long time. I didn't know much about it. To me, it went into the same pile as aromatherapy and chakra meditation. But now that I practice both of those things (which I'd previously blown off) I figured that reiki, the Japanese art of healing pain through the power of touch, was worth looking into a little bit more.

    If you're like me (and you probably are at least a little) than you've been watching True Tori. If you haven't been, than here's all you need to know. Dean McDermott cheated on his wife Tori Spelling and now they have a T.V. show wherein they try to save their marriage. This week, they visited a reiki practitioner, and I was reminded of just how much I wanted to research this stuff and see what it's all about. Is it effective, or just a celebrity indulgence?

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    Some of us love naps. We need them to function. Sometimes we just get so tired that the toothpicks give out and a snooze is an absolute must. Or we partake in coffee and attempt to delay the inevitable slumber. Naps are a beautiful thing. Or so I thought. Napping is linked to an early death. It can kill us. Die. Dead. Gone. Game over. Adults who nap every day are two and a half times more likely to die before their "time."

    This is the worst news ever. Is this study funded by those who pimp out caffeine? Or one of those energy drinks? I'm a napper. I nap so I can live! Not to die sooner!

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    Alec Baldwin's young wife, Hilaria, is quickly becoming the Gisele Bundchen of the yoga world -- that is, the person most likely to annoy you. Longtime yoga instructor Hilaria has been taking advantage of her sudden semi-fame as Alec's wife to promote the practice to which she is devoted. Sometimes bizarrely over-devoted. Like here when she does a "pilot pose" on, you guessed it, an airplane. And then she posted it to Instagram -- because of course she did.

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    Mita Diran was a baby -- just 24 -- when she slipped into a coma this week and died, shortly after spending days awake and relying on something called Thai Red Bull just so she could work more. The Indonesian woman was a copywriter at a major ad agency in her country and proudly Tweeted about her commitment to work in the days and weeks leading up to her death. Her last Tweet, which she sent on December 14, read: "30 hours of working and still going strooong." Hers is the story of a sad, terrible waste of a young, talented life.

    But Mita's work habits are probably not that far off from many of our own. And this heartbreaking story should serve as a wake-up call for some of us.

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    I've always been a big picture thinker, which can be handy in a few instances. But mostly, it makes you focus on the destination and miss the entire journey.

    Worse, when you finally think you've reached the destination, it's not at all how you imagined it.

    If you're like me and tend to think about tomorrow and the next day rather than enjoying today, you need to read this, stat.

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    If you've got tons of energy, hardly need any sleep, and just love working out six days a week, you probably have no reason to believe you're anything other than super healthy. But the opposite turned out to be true for 22-year-old college student Cristina Speirs. She chalked up her immense amount of energy and enviable lack of need of sleep to her regular workouts and hot yoga classes. But in reality something much more sinister was going on. Cristina had cancer.

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    Imagine being a healthy, active young woman planning your wedding one day, and the next, you are in constant pain, your brain is always foggy, and you are practically bed-ridden. This is what happened to 31-year-old Jennifer Brea, who first came down with myalgic encephalomyelitis (ME), or what is commonly known in the U.S. as "chronic fatigue syndrome" when she was at Harvard University. "I can't drive. I can't leave my house unattended, and I'm in a wheelchair," Brea told ABC News. What happened?!

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