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Sleep Mistake

Thursday, May 06, 2010

Well, after all of my introspection yesterday, I made a mistake that cost me some sleep last night. I pushed through my fatigue because we had company. The result was that I was over tired and too keyed up to get to sleep. I know better than to do this, but I was trying not to be rude, so I didn't give any clear boundaries. Viola! Today I'm dragging and irritated with myself. If other people don't care how late they're keeping me up, I need to care about myself and give them the social cues to let them know I'm tired. I'm physically too tired today to do my usual vigorous workout without hurting myself. Kudos to me for using good judgement on that! Instead, I'm going to work on my "to do list" at home. I've got to become clearer with my communications and boundaries to other people. They can only take advantage of me if I let them. I will do a better job of taking care of myself next time. Meanwhile, this afternoon I will treat myself to a nap because I need it and deserve it!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

FRAN0426 5/8/2010 4:31PM

    Take that nap, your body needs it---then maybe later today you can get some exercise in and it won't be a total wash out on exercise.

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SLENDERELLA61 5/8/2010 2:53PM

    Hope you got your nap! Sounds like you learned a valuable lesson. Hope you can apply it in order to take better care of yourself from now on. Regards, Marsha

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PEGGYANNSCH 5/6/2010 6:40PM

    You need your sleep and other people should respect that and not stay late.Now you are paying for it today.

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Dealing With Fatigue Not Due To Lack Of Sleep

Wednesday, May 05, 2010

Now that I'm spending a whole week with the focus on sleep, I'm looking for other causes of my fatigue. Let me say first that I'm hypothyroid. Being hypothyroid makes me very sensitive to feeling fatigue and I have to pay close attention to those feelings. Repeated bouts of fatigue during the daytime, when I'm getting adequate sleep at night, can raise a red flag and send me to the doctor for a thyroid medication check. Before I head to the doctor's office in a state of panic, there are a few other things I've learned to check first.

One of the first things that I usually check is the amount of protein that I've consumed for the day. Yesterday, I was feeling way too tired and dragged out to be normal. Upon checking the food tracker (got to love that thing) I noticed that my protein consumption was way too low. So for dinner I had a healthy serving of meat. Within about 40 minutes I was wide awake and full of energy. It was amazing! Obviously protein consumption is something that I need to watch for my own health. Some people who are hypothyroid need to make sure that their diet is rich in protein. I appear to be one of them.

The second thing that I check is the amount of water that I've consumed. Believe it or not, if I haven't had enough, it manifests itself in feeling tired and drained of energy. Since I live in Florida, keeping myself hydrated is a must. Today, for example, I did a strenuous workout in the water for about 75 minutes. The way the pool is shaped there is no place to set a water bottle. It is therefore very important that I drink quite a bit of water after my workout is over. When I started to feel really tired today, I knew that it was important for me to increase my water intake. Just like yesterday, as soon as I addressed the problem, I drank about 20 ounces, I perked right up.

The third thing I look at is physical stress such as illness, allergies or menstrual cycle. Any one of these or a combination can cause me to feel exhausted for no apparent reason. Several years ago I started getting frequent respiratory infections. In order to find out what was causing them, I started tracking combinations of things such as the weather, emotional stress, where I was in my menstrual cycle and the daily pollen count. Now I take allergy shots, monitor my sleep, eat lots of fruits/veggies and watch my stress levels. With my family doctor's help, I have reduced the respiratory infections to once or twice a year. I was also diagnosed with hypothyroidism which is somewhat controlled with medication. I have found that I need to pay closer attention to my body's signals.

The last thing that I take a look at is the amount of emotional stress that I'm experiencing. Stress can do lots of strange things to your body including making you feel tired and or sick. If I've already checked on my protein, my water and my physical stress, emotional stress is the next thing on my list. There are lots of things you can do to deal with stress. Some of them are deep breathing, venting to a journal, venting to a trusted friend/ family member, distracting yourself by doing something fun, getting some aerobic exercise, meditating, practicing yoga, giving yourself a spiritual shot in the arm and getting professional help to manage your stress, just to name a few. Hubby and I are currently working on a very stressful community project. Being aware that I am stressed out is important. I can't do anything about the stress until I become aware that I am stressed! I've been doing deep breathing, aerobic exercise, venting , praying and some meditation. This has been very helpful in managing my stress level and fighting fatigue.

Sometimes fighting fatigue is as simple as tracking your sleep or your food and water on the tracker. Sometimes it's more complex and requires professional help. Learning to know the difference is important. My motto is, if all else fails contact the doctor and get yourself checked out. Find out what is causing you to feel tired so that you can enjoy your life. Remember, fatigue isn't just caused by not sleeping!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

DONNABRIGHT 5/6/2010 8:31AM

    Great article - thanks!

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SLIMLILA 5/5/2010 7:03PM

    Wow! I was just rambling on and asking if anyone was as tired as me, and I came upon your blog.... just exactly what I needed. I keep forgetting the stress and omitting it, but I'm sure it is playing a way bigger part in how I feel that I realized. I am awaiting word on whether I will have a job at this school next year or whether I need to start looking again. That is weighing heavier than I give it credit for. But, thanks for your very informative and eye-opening blog. Great job!

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SLENDERELLA61 5/5/2010 5:18PM

    Very good analysis. You have learned to be a very good caregiver to your own body. I haven't looked that closely for reasons for fatigue. You've given me some ideas, though, that I'll try next time. Thanks.

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Getting Enough Sleep Is Crucial

Tuesday, May 04, 2010

Getting the sleep that your body needs every night is crucial to functioning properly. When I first started on Spark People, I decided to track my sleep everyday in order to look for patterns. I was in a period of my life when I was having difficulty falling asleep on a regular basis. I made getting 7+ hours daily a goal. Something amazing happened! Suddenly I started to sleep better. Why the act of making it a goal made me sleep better, I'll never know. Perhaps setting the goal is only part of it. I also started working out on a more regular basis. I've always been an active person but for the last ten years, my workouts were sporadic at best. Once I got into a schedule of eating better and working out, I was tired enough to go to sleep at night. Sleeping enough improved my mood, made me eat less and allowed my body to regenerate its cells better. My overall health improved! Now if I don't get adequate sleep I am able to see that it makes a huge difference!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

MWILSON86 5/4/2010 10:30PM

    I agree too! I feel much more like me when I get enough sleep. My body lets me know when it is not satisfied with my sleep, it literally beats me up! I get a headache, a stomachache, or I just feel fun! The new May Challenge is allowing me to see the importance of sleep.

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AMANDAJCD 5/4/2010 9:48PM

    Sleep is my holy grail. Ditto everything you said :)

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PEGGYANNSCH 5/4/2010 7:44PM

    I agree

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PEGGYANNSCH 5/4/2010 7:44PM

    I agree

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BUNNYCATS 5/4/2010 4:13PM

    Totally agree! The whole world looks better after a good nights sleep! emoticon emoticon emoticon

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SLENDERELLA61 5/4/2010 3:35PM

    Very, very true! Thanks for your leadership on this issue. -Marsha

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SHIRLS2010 5/4/2010 3:24PM

    I so agree with you about getting enough sleep. It can change your whole outlook on life. I used to think I was so clever getting by on 5 hours a night, but in reality I was dragging myself through the day and depending on coffee or diet coke to wake me up. Now I drink herbal tea and water instead and get to sleep earlier emoticon

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My First Visit To Bok Tower

Sunday, May 02, 2010

This morning hubby and I went out for a healthy breakfast and then went for our first visit to Bok Towers. Bok Towers is located in Lake Wales, Florida. Bok Towers is supposed to be the highest point in the state of Florida. We enjoyed wondering through the information center and reading all of the historical information. Our favorite part was walking up the hill to see the tower itself. The gardens around the tower are beautifully kept and there are lovely flowers, trees, bushes and grasses. Scattered about are benches, gazebos, markers with information about the foliage and signs directing visitors to different areas of the park. Around the tower itself is a small pond with koi and a swan. I took many pictures and some of them are below.

This is Bok Tower itself.

This flower looks like an orchid but is really part of the iris family.

This swan was performing and fluffing his feathers after being fed by personnel at the towers.

This flower has a star shape that makes me think of team mate WILD4STARS!

This blue flower had such a lovely color to it that I couldn't resist!

This pale yellow flower looks like it may be in the orchid family but I don't know.

You can tell from the last picture (a sun dial on the tower) that I took that particular picture at 11:36a.m. I even checked with the time on my cell phone and it was accurate!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

L*I*T*A* 5/2/2010 7:42PM

    wonderful pictures..............looks like a great place to visit if i ever get down that way.............have a wonderful week.............blessings and hugs.............lita

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PINKSAINT247 5/2/2010 7:13PM

    Did you go to the white garden? Haven't figured out why they call it that, we got married in that particular location 3 years ago May 31st. It's the part where the two palm trees form an X. We said our vows under the palms.
I'm glad you enjoyed it as much as we do. It holds a very special place in our hearts.

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AMANDAJCD 5/2/2010 6:18PM

    That's just gorgeous, Cyndi!

My husband and I need to go there. He's from Louisiana and is a relatively recent Central Florida transplant so he hasn't been, and the only time I was there I was a very young teenager and completely dense. I think I'd appreciate it now.

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SLENDERELLA61 5/2/2010 3:46PM

    Beautiful! Thanks for sharing. I went to Bok Tower first in the 1950's. I doubt there is a decade since I haven't been. It is one of my favorite places. Glad you enjoyed it. -Marsha

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WILD4STARS 5/2/2010 2:41PM

    Didn't you just love it? Did you get to the Windows on the Pond? Your photos are great!
I love going there early in the morning, during the week. Generally have the entire place to myself.
emoticon LOVE the star flowers, thanks for thinking of me.

Comment edited on: 5/2/2010 3:07:44 PM

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Using the Mileage Tracker on Spark People

Saturday, May 01, 2010

Spark People has this really great feature called the mileage tracker. Since I just completed walking with our local team this morning, I decided to play around with it. All you have to do is enter the zip code or city name where you are doing your activity and a map of the area comes onto the screen. You can then track the course that you've covered and it tells what the distance you've traveled. This feature is way too cool!! I titled my Lake Morton under the City of Lakeland in Florida. If any of my local team mates would like to see how I've tracked our route it is saved. Check this feature out! It's great!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

PEGGYANNSCH 5/1/2010 7:50PM


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WILD4STARS 5/1/2010 1:07PM

    emoticonI'll have to check it out.

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