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25 Amazing Running Routes Around The World

25 Amazing Running Routes Around The World

Training for and and successfully completing a marathon is a big deal. For many, the monotonous training is a bore to say the least. But for the crazy bunch such as myself, it is a hobby that brings much excitement and necessary self-discipline.

I’ve run more than 20 marathons, including three Comrades Marathons over the past six years. I’ve become a seasoned athlete who runs all-year round. For me though, running the same races year in and year out has the potential to become a massive bore.

Perhaps you fall into the same “I am bored of the same races” category. Maybe you are a novice who’s looking to participate in his or her first marathon. Or maybe, you are a part-time marathon athlete who loves travelling.

Whatever your circumstances, I’ve put together a list of 25 amazing routes in 17 countries, four continents and the Caribbeans. These are routes that have epic views, incredibly supportive fans and a great sense of culture that will appeal to any runner or avid traveller.

I’ve run a few of these races myself and I hope to complete all of the races below by the time I put up my running gear (which won’t be anytime soon!). And hopefully, this list inspires you to lace up, train and travel more.

1. Soweto Marathon, Soweto, South Africa

Running in the southwestern Townships (Soweto) of Johannesburg, the marathon takes you through the rich culture of South Africa.

The race starts in Nasrec and takes you through six significant landmarks:

– Chris Hani Baragwanath Hospital (the third largest hospital in the world)

– Walter Sisulu Square

– Regina Mundi Catholic Church (the largest Roman Catholic Church in South Africa)

– Morris Isaacson High School

– Vilakazi Street (the only street in the world to have housed two Noble Peace Prize Winners in Nelson Mandela and Desmond Tutu)

amazing running routes

    Hector Pieterson Memorial (memorial and museum that commemorates the role of the country’s students in the struggle against apartheid) is also a featured landmark on the trail. The route eventually takes you back to Nasrec, where you will pass the 90,000 person capacity FNB Stadium, also known as Soccer City, where the 2010 World Cup was played.

    amazing running routes

      www.sowetomarathon.com

      2. Great Wall Of China Marathon, Tianjin, China

      Considered one of the toughest marathons in the world, the route starts near the village of Huangyaguan, northeast of Beijing. It proceeds to the Great Wall, the world’s longest wall and biggest ancient architecture, where you will go up and down 5,164 steps.

      China_GreatWallMarathon2013_062

        Here, you can expect to see a stunning array of scenery:

        – The beaches of Qinhuangdao, rugged mountains around Beijing

        – The desert corridor between the tall mountain ranges at Jiayu Pas

        From there, you proceed through scenic villages and rice fields before looping back to the Wall again for the final portion of the race, when you’ll finish in the center of Yin and Yang Square.

        amazing running routes

          www.great-wall-marathon.com

          3. TCS New York City Marathon, New York, USA

          With more than 50,000 finishers, 10,000 volunteers and one million spectators in 2014, the New York City Marathon is the largest marathon in the United States. Dubbed “the most prestigious endurance event in the world”, the course takes you through the five boroughs of New York City: Manhattan, Brooklyn, Queens, the Bronx and Staten Island.

          5 boroughs

            Considered one of the toughest courses of the major marathons in America, it has deceptive hills that force you to pace yourself adequately as you make your way past these historic landmarks and millions of screaming supporters that are guaranteed to give you an adrenaline rush.

            Amazing running routes

              www.tcsnycmarathon.org

              4. Virgin Money London Marathon, London, England

              One of the World Marathon Majors Series that awards a $1 million prize to the top male and female marathoners in the top six world races, it attracts nearly 40,000 athletes every year.

              This marathon is a flat, fast race that starts in Blackheath in southeast London and passes the most iconic landmarks of England – Big Ben, the Tower of London, the London Eye – and runs along the River Thames and across the Tower Bridge.

              amazing running routes

                The event crosses the finish line in front of Buckhngham Palace.

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                London Marathon map

                  www.virginmoneylondonmarathon.com

                  5. Schneider Electric Marathon de Paris, France

                  In 2013, Paris received approximately 29.3 million visitors, making it one of the top tourist destinations. What better way to tour the place as an athlete?

                  The marathon is one of the largest in the world, with approximately 140 nationalities and 50,000 athletes having participated in 2013. The course itself offers spectacular views and landmarks all along the route.

                  Starting off on the Avenue des Champs-Elysees, the course runs alongside the banks of Seine and past some of the city’s greatest sites (famous Louvre, Place de la Concorde, Place la Bastille).

                  amazing running routes

                    Runners then run a loop around the Bois de Vincennes and return to the heart of the city and Rue de Charenton, the halfway point. The inward stretch follows the course of the Seine, passing Ile de la Cite and going under the Pont Neuf, and through a series of tunnels.

                    For those in need, there is a large drink station and foot massage area at Trocadero, facing the Eiffel Tower. The route then continues along the Seine, before branching east towards Bois de Boulogne, finally emerging for the final 200 metres and the finish line on the Avenue Foch.

                    www.schneiderelectricparismarathon.com

                    6. Reggae Run, Negril, Jamaica

                    Home to some of the greatest athletes, like the world’s fastest runner, Usain Bolt, The Amazing Reggae Marathon is Jamaica’s premier International Marathon Event.

                    The race starts at Long Bay Beach Park, situated along Negril’s lively 7-mile white sand beach. It proceeds and loops into the town of Negril and then heads north toward the town of Green Island.

                    amazing running routes

                      Lined with enthusiastic spectators and pulsating Reggae music on course, you are guaranteed to have an “irie” race. The Finish Line Beach Bash affords everyone an opportunity to relax on the beach with special offerings and entertainment geared toward having a total blast.

                      amazing running routes

                        www.reggaemarathon.com

                        7. Honolulu Marathon, Honolulu, Hawaii

                        Hosted in December, the Honolulu Marathon is one of the largest in the United States and attracts more than 25,000 athletes annually.

                        The race starts in Ala Maona Beach Park and passes through several famous Hawaiian landmarks, such as Lolani Palace, the only royal palace in the U.S.

                        amazing running routes

                          The route also makes its way past the statue of surfing hero Duke Kahanamoku on surfing heaven Waikiki Beach and Kawaiahao Church and Diamond Head. The run comes to an end in Kapiolani Park, the state’s first public park.

                          On race day, this park is transformed to a joyful festival with approximately 50,000 spectators. Being a part of this is a definite must for any athlete.

                          amazing running routes

                            www.honolulumarathon.org

                            8. Two Oceans Marathon, Cape Town, South Africa

                            It was established in 1970, and attracts the cream of local and international athletes alike. Affectionately known as “The world’s most beautiful marathon”, the 56-km ultra-marathon takes you through a backdrop of scenery that paces you around the Cape Peninsula via Chapman’s Peak, Hout Bay and Constantia Nek.

                            Below is a picture of myself making my way up Chapman’s Peak:

                            amazing running route

                              These views, in addition to the tough course, will leave you breathless.

                              amazing running routes

                                www.twooceansmarathon.org.za

                                9. Marathon International de Marrakech, Morocco

                                This race is run in Marrakesh, a magical town that offers an exceptional setting, a very mild climate in January and a beautiful circuit considered to be one of the fastest in the world.

                                marrakech

                                  The route takes you through the city’s 12th-century ramparts, Menara gardens on dusty roads lined with palms. And the imposing Atlas Mountains provide an astonishing backdrop to the pink-walled city.

                                  Semi-Marathon-International-De-Marrakech-map

                                    www.marathon-marrakech.com

                                    10. Boston Marathon, Boston, Massachusets

                                    With the first marathon dating back as far as 1897, the Boston Marathon is the oldest and most prestigious race in the United States.

                                    With rigorous qualifying standards, it is a dream marathon for many athletes. It is run on Partiots Day and starts in Hopkins. Nearby is a statue of George V. Brown, starter of the marathon between 1905 and 1937, with his starter’s pistol aloft.

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                                    At the one-mile mark at Weston Nurseries on Route 135 is a statue honoring Stylianos Kyriakides, whose victory in the 1946 race brought worldwide attention and badly need relief supplies to his war-torn homeland of Grace.

                                    amazing running routes

                                      The race continues east on Route 16 into the Newton Lower Falls and emerges at the firehouse onto Commonwealth Avenue. Here, you will find a bronze statue at the start of the Newton hills, depicting a 27-year-old Kelley winning the 1935 race and an 84-year-old Kelley completing his final marathon in 1992.

                                      The race eventually finishes in Copley Square near the Boston Public Library.

                                      amazing running routes

                                        www.baa.org

                                        11. Athens Classic Marathon, Athens, Greece

                                        The Athens Classic Marathon is one of the biggest sporting events in Greece. And if history is anything to go by, it is probably the first marathon to be run in the world. In 490 B.C., a giant Persian army invaded the small town of Marathon, near the coast of Greece.

                                        However, the Greek defeated the Persians. Following that, a messenger named Pheidippides was sent to Athens to bring news of the victory. The young Greek ran 26.2 miles from battlefield to the capital to announce the victory.

                                        Approximately three miles into the run, you will come across the “Tomb of Marathon Warriors.” This is a 10 mile high burial mound where 192 men who died in battle were collectively cremated and buried as a sign of honour.

                                        amazing running routes

                                          The first 12 kilometers are level, with gentle long hills in the middle 19 kilometers. The final 11 kilometers are a downhill run that takes you into the magnificent Olympic Stadium in Athens.

                                          amazing running routes

                                            www.athensmarathon.com

                                            12. Dublin Marathon, Dublin, Ireland

                                            Dubbed the “friendly marathon,” the Dublin Marathon is run through the capital’s historic Georgian streets and its magnificent park. The race is single lap that is largely flat and starts and finishes close to the City Centre, in Fitzwilliam Square and Merrion Square, respectively.

                                            Two, well-known landmarks on the route are the City Hall and Dublin Castle.

                                            amazing running routes

                                              Dublin, which has more green spaces per square kilometer than any other area in Europe, sees the marathon make its way past St. Stephen’s Green, Brickfields Park, Phoenix Park, Bushy Park and Elm Park Golf Course.

                                              With ideal running conditions and a fantastic crowd in support, this race is indeed a friendly one.

                                              dublin_route_map

                                                13. Comrades Marathon, Kwazulu-Natal, South Africa

                                                With its inception in 1921, the Comrades Marathon is the world’s oldest ultra-marathon and attracts nearly 20,000 athletes yearly.

                                                Commonly known as “The Ultimate Human Race”, it is a 56-mile grueling run that consists of an “Up” and “Down” route. Known for more its spirit and tradition, than it is the scenery, it always starts with blaring music in the background and the “Chariots of Fire” theme minutes before the race begins at 5:30 am.

                                                Ultimately, the recorded cockcrow of Max Trimborn signals the grueling but incredibly worthwhile ultra-marathon for any long distance runner.

                                                On the “Up” run you pass two villages, Camperdown and Cato Ridge, which are often packed with large crowds of spectators lining both sides of the road.

                                                In addition, you pass the “Wall of Honour”, situated at the half-way point in Drummond. It overlooks the Valley of 1,000 Hills and was created to serve as a permanent landmark to commemorate the achievement of Comrades runners who have completed the epic “Up” run.

                                                amazing running routes

                                                  The “Up” run is slightly shorter and starts in Durban and finishes in Pietermaritzburg. The “Down” run starts in Pietermaritzburg and finishes in Durban.

                                                  The Comrades Marathon is a must run race for every long distance athlete.

                                                  amazing running routes

                                                    www.comrades.com

                                                    14. Puerto Rico Marathon, Puerto Rico

                                                    The Puerto Rico Marathon is a popular destination race, combining a Caribbean vacation with first-class competition. The scenic route takes you along the Atlantic Ocean and past the San Geronimo Fort & Museum and the University of Puerto Rico.

                                                    amazing running routes

                                                      Run under tropical conditions, albeit humid and hot, and filled with spectators that cheer you on in Spanish and English, you can’t help but admire this wonderful race.

                                                      amazing running routes

                                                        www.marathonpuertorico.com

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                                                        15. Marathon de la Baie du Mont Saint-Michel, France

                                                        Approximately 5,000 athletes, representing approximately 30 nationalities, participate in this event annually.

                                                        It is the only race in France where one can see the finish (the Mount) from the start. It starts with a run along the seafront of the Bay going through (among other interesting spots) Le Vivier-sur-Mer in Brittany and Cherrueix, which is famous for its sand-yachting races.

                                                        amazing running routes

                                                          It then crosses a polder area and makes its way to the towering fortified village of Normandy’s Mont Saint-Michel.

                                                          amazing running routes

                                                            www.montsaintmichel-marathon.com

                                                            16. Sparkasse 3-Laender Marathon, Germany; Austria; Switzerland

                                                            When we talk unique, the running route of this marathon amazes many. Run in three countries, the marathon starts from the beautiful Island of Lindau in Germany.

                                                            Start_Lindau (1)

                                                              You then run along Lake Constance for about 60% of the race. Here, you pass the iconic 7,000-seater Seebuhne (of floating stage), running through the Austrian towns of Lochau, Bregenz, Hard and Höchst.

                                                              The race continues over the Swiss border at St. Margreten and continues across the Rheindamm back to Hard and finally finishes in the Casino-Stadium in Bregenz, Switzerland, where a cheering crowd awaits you.

                                                              With mountain views are on either side as you run over rivers, bridges, and alternating asphalt and cobblestone streets, it is a spectacular race to participate in.

                                                              3 in one route map

                                                                www.sparkasse-3-laender-marathon.at/en

                                                                17. The Big Five Marathon, Entabeni Game Reserve, Limpopo, South Africa

                                                                For those love wild life, this is a popular event that attracts athletes from all over the world.

                                                                Running through the enormous and magnificent surroundings of the Entabeni Game Reserve, it combines exciting game drives with a challenging marathon route that goes through the most famous African Big Five game – elephants, rhinos, buffalo, lions and leopards.

                                                                amazing running routes

                                                                  Running with no fences and rivers and passing through a section known as ‘lion country’, this event is definitely not for the faint-hearted.

                                                                  amazing running routes

                                                                    www.big-five-marathon.com

                                                                    18. Chicago Marathon, Chicago, Illinois

                                                                    The Bank Of America Chicago Marathon is huge event that attracts in excess of 40,000 athletes from more than 50 states and countries.

                                                                    Supported by more than 1.5 million spectators, runners start and finish in Grant Park, located just south of the New Eastside neighborhood, which features a unique three-level roadway system and is home to several residential and commercial high rises, such as the Aon Center and Prudential Building

                                                                    Runners also pass through Streeterville, an energetic neighborhood that blends together luxury hotels, fabulous shopping, arts and fine dining. It is in this neighborhood that you see the shopper’s paradise, the Magnificent Mile – eight blocks of more than 460 shops and boutiques.

                                                                    amazing running routes

                                                                      The course takes you through magnificent cities and you make you past 29 Chicago neighborhoods. The race also makes its way through Near West, a neighborhood that houses the United Center, home stadium of the Chicago Bulls and the Blackhawks.

                                                                      Along the route you will also experience an abundance of Greek, Italian and Chinese culture as the race makes its way through the neighborhoods of Greektown, Little Italy, Pilsen and Chinatown. And the dancing doesn’t stop in Pilsen, Chicago’s largest Latino community.

                                                                      Over the 26.2 miles, the course weaves through these incredibly dynamic, individual neighborhoods into the tale of one city, making this an incredible experience that showcases the importance of community and a united spirit.

                                                                      amazing running routes

                                                                        www.chicagomarathon.com

                                                                        19. Big Sur International Marathon, California, USA

                                                                        The Big Sur International Marathon is an annual marathon held in California.  The marathon was established in 1986 and attracts about 4,500 participants annually. Featuring rolling hills, Big Sur is the largest rural marathon in the world, winding through redwoods, paralleling ranches, and offering stunning views of the Pacific Ocean.

                                                                        At the halfway point, the route makes its way past the Bixby Creek Bridge, California’s favorite coastal bridge.

                                                                        amazing running routes

                                                                          With live entertainment throughout the race, it’s a lovely event to participate in.

                                                                          amazing running routes

                                                                            www.bsim.org

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                                                                            20. Bagan Temple Marathon, Burma

                                                                            Tucked away in central Myanmar and home to more than 2,000 temples, Bagan’s beauty and historical significance is unsurpassed. Sacred pagodas and beautiful temples are scattered across the plains of Bagan, creating a mystical, striking landscape.

                                                                            The marathon course will take runners on a voyage of discovery into this alluring and untouched land.

                                                                            amazing running routes

                                                                              The heat and dusty course is a challenge for most runners participating the Bagan Temple Marathon. However, the beautiful temples, the friendly villagers, the other-worldly atmosphere make this marathon one of a kind

                                                                              amazing running routes

                                                                                www.bagan-temple-marathon.com

                                                                                21. BMW Berlin Marathon, Berlin, Germany

                                                                                With the first run in 1974 attracting 286 runners, this marathon has grown in leaps and bounds and now sees approximately 40,000 runners participate.

                                                                                With more than a million spectators, the course starts and finishes next to one of the capital’s most famous landmarks – the Brandenburg Gate. The route also takes you via notable spots such as the Reichstag and Berliner Dom.

                                                                                amazing running routes

                                                                                  With skaters cheering you on as you pace yourself through classic buildings of the east and hi-tech shops and modern properties of the west, this race is indeed a unique one.

                                                                                  amazing marathon routes

                                                                                    www.bmw-berlin-marathon.com

                                                                                    22. Swiss Alpine races, Switzerland

                                                                                    This event has a heritage of three decades. In recent times, the diversity of runners and routes amid Graubenden’s amazing alpine scenery makes the Swiss Alpine Marathon more than just a race.

                                                                                    amazing running routes

                                                                                      The event has also evolved into a family experience, involving very young participants and organizing a team relay. It’s a must for any family of athletes.

                                                                                      amazing running rout

                                                                                        www.swissalpine.ch

                                                                                        23. Marathon du Medoc, Bordeaux, France

                                                                                        The Marathon du Medoc provides an out of the ordinary experience for its participants. With a limit of 8,500 participants, it takes you through a stunningly beautiful circuit of more than 50 chateuax.

                                                                                        amazing running routes

                                                                                          With more than 52 other events alongside the race, 22 refreshments stands and 21 food stands and special gourmet stands, the event provides a feast second to none. Plus, as you make your way through the festivities – with the occasional sip of wine – you are cheered by 3,000 volunteers and approximately 10, 000 spectators.

                                                                                          amazing running routes

                                                                                            www.marathondumedoc.com

                                                                                            24. GoodLife Fitness Victoria Marathon, Victoria, BC, Canada

                                                                                            With the limit of participants set at 4,000, this marathon is a flat route that showcases Canada’s natural beauty.

                                                                                            Run along the southern tip of the island, with the Olympic Mountain range visible in the distance, the course takes runners past landmarks such as the BC legislative buildings, Ogden Point, Beacon Hill Park and the statue of Terry Fox at Mile ‘O’.

                                                                                            amazing running routes

                                                                                              www.runvictoriamarathon.com

                                                                                              25. Marathon of the Midnight Sun, Tromso, Norway

                                                                                              Whoever said running marathons is boring?

                                                                                              Run at the height of summer in the Norwegian town of Tromso in the Arctic Circle, and in the middle of the night with the sun sitting above the horizon, illuminating the road ahead.

                                                                                              The start and finish lines are in the city centre. Runners head off towards the Tromsø Bridge, two km in to the race which arcs uphill from 6 to 43 meters above sea level. At the 20 km point runners cross back over the bridge, returning to and passing through the city centre.

                                                                                              midnight-sun-maraton-tromso-norway

                                                                                                The second half of the course is quite flat and easy. The course loops round and brings runners back to the city centre again, this time to the finish line and cheering crowds.

                                                                                                amazing running routes

                                                                                                  www.msm.no

                                                                                                  Whoever could have thought that running at midnight, with sun shining brightly, was possible? Whoever could have thought that the pain and monotony of marathon running could be this fun? I hope you’ve enjoyed the read. More importantyly, I hope it encourages you to strive to live a healthy, adventurous and exciting lifestyle.

                                                                                                   

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                                                                                                  Published on November 14, 2018

                                                                                                  Why You Suffer from Constant Fatigue and How to Deal with It

                                                                                                  Why You Suffer from Constant Fatigue and How to Deal with It

                                                                                                  With our busy, always on lives, it seems that more and more of us are facing constant tiredness and fatigue on a regular basis.

                                                                                                  For many people, they just take this in their stride as part of modern life, but for others the impact can be crippling and can have a serious effect on their sense of wellbeing, health and productivity.

                                                                                                  In this article, I’ll share some of the most common causes of constant tiredness and fatigue and give you some guidance and action steps you can take to overcome some of the symptoms of fatigue.

                                                                                                  Why Am I Feeling Fatigued?

                                                                                                  Fatigue is extreme tiredness resulting from mental or physical exertion or illness.  It is a reduction in the efficiency of a muscle or organ after prolonged activity.[1]

                                                                                                  It can affect anyone, and most adults will experience fatigue at some point in their life. 

                                                                                                  For many people, fatigue is caused by a combination of lifestyle, social, psychological and general wellbeing issues rather than an underlying medical condition.

                                                                                                  Although fatigue is sometimes described as tiredness, it is different to just feeling tired or sleepy. Everyone feels tired at some point, but this is usually resolved with a nap or a few nights of good sleep. Someone who is sleepy may also feel temporarily refreshed after exercising. If you are getting enough sleep, good nutrition and exercising regularly but still find it hard to perform, concentrate or be motivated at your normal levels, you may be experiencing a level of fatigue that needs further investigation. 

                                                                                                  Symptoms of Fatigue

                                                                                                  Fatigue can cause a vast range of physical, mental and emotional symptoms including:

                                                                                                  • chronic tiredness, exhaustion or sleepiness
                                                                                                  • mental blocks
                                                                                                  • lack of motivation
                                                                                                  • headache
                                                                                                  • dizziness
                                                                                                  • muscle weakness
                                                                                                  • slowed reflexes and responses
                                                                                                  • impaired decision-making and judgement
                                                                                                  • moodiness, such as irritability
                                                                                                  • impaired hand-to-eye coordination
                                                                                                  • reduced immune system function
                                                                                                  • blurry vision
                                                                                                  • short-term memory problems
                                                                                                  • poor concentration
                                                                                                  • reduced ability to pay attention to the situation at hand

                                                                                                  Causes of Fatigue

                                                                                                  The wide range of causes that can trigger fatigue include:

                                                                                                  • Medical causes: Constant exhaustion, tiredness and fatigue may be a sign of an underlying illness, such as a thyroid disorder, heart disease, anemia or diabetes.
                                                                                                  • Lifestyle-related causes: Being overweight and a lack of regular exercise can lead to feelings of fatigue.  Lack of sleep and overcommitting can also create feelings of excessive tiredness and fatigue.
                                                                                                  • Workplace-related causes: Workplace and financial stress in a variety of forms can lead to feelings of fatigue.
                                                                                                  • Emotional concerns and stress: Fatigue is a common symptom of mental health problems, such as depression and grief, and may be accompanied by other signs and symptoms, including irritability and lack of motivation.

                                                                                                  Fatigue can also be caused by a number of factors working in combination.

                                                                                                  Medical Causes of Fatigue

                                                                                                  If you have made lifestyle changes to increase your energy and still feel exhausted and fatigued, it may be time to seek guidance from your doctor.

                                                                                                  Here are a few examples of illnesses that can cause ongoing fatigue. Seek medical advice if you suspect you have a health problem:

                                                                                                  Anemia

                                                                                                  Anemia is a condition in which you don’t have enough healthy red blood cells to carry adequate oxygen to the body’s tissues. It is a common cause of fatigue in women.

                                                                                                  Having anemia may make you feel tired and weak.

                                                                                                  There are many forms of anemia, each with its own cause. Anemia can be temporary or long term, and it can range from mild to severe.[2]

                                                                                                  Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS)

                                                                                                  Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS) is a condition that can cause persistent, unexplained fatigue that interferes with daily activities for more than six months.

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                                                                                                  This is a chronic condition with no one-size-fits-all treatment, but lifestyle changes can often help ease some symptoms of fatigue.[3]

                                                                                                  Diabetes

                                                                                                  Diabetes can cause fatigue with either high or low blood sugars. When your sugars are high, they remain in the bloodstream instead of being used for energy, which makes you feel fatigued. Low blood sugar (glucose) means you may not have enough fuel for energy, also causing fatigue.[4]

                                                                                                  Sleep Apnea

                                                                                                  Sleep apnea is a serious sleep disorder where sufferers briefly stop breathing for short periods during sleep. Most people are not aware this is happening, but it can cause loud snoring, and daytime fatigue.

                                                                                                  Being overweight, smoking, and drinking alcohol can all worsen the symptoms of sleep apnea.[5]

                                                                                                  Thyroid disease

                                                                                                  An underactive thyroid gland means you have too little thyroid hormone (thyroxine) in your body. This makes you feel tired and you could also put on weight and have aching muscles and dry skin.[6]

                                                                                                  Common lifestyle factors that can cause fatigue include:

                                                                                                  • Lack of sleep
                                                                                                  • Too much sleep 
                                                                                                  • Alcohol and drugs 
                                                                                                  • Sleep disturbances 
                                                                                                  • Lack of regular exercise and sedentary behaviour 
                                                                                                  • Poor diet 

                                                                                                  Common workplace issues that can cause fatigue include:

                                                                                                  • Shift work: Our body is designed to sleep during the night. A shift worker may confuse their circadian clock by working when their body is programmed to be asleep.
                                                                                                  • Poor workplace practices: This may include long work hours, hard physical labour, irregular working hours (such as rotating shifts), a stressful work environment, boredom or working alone. 
                                                                                                  • Workplace stress – This can be caused by a wide range of factors including job dissatisfaction, heavy workload, conflicts with bosses or colleagues, bullying, or threats to job security.
                                                                                                  • Burnout: This could be striving too hard on one area of your life while neglecting others, which leads to a life that feels out of balance.

                                                                                                  Psychological Causes of Fatigue

                                                                                                  Psychological factors are present in many cases of extreme tiredness and fatigue.  These may include:

                                                                                                  • Depression: Depression is characterised by severe and prolonged feelings of sadness, dejection and hopelessness. People who are depressed commonly experience chronic fatigue.
                                                                                                  • Anxiety and stress: Someone who is constantly anxious or stressed keeps their body in overdrive. The constant flooding of adrenaline exhausts the body, and fatigue sets in.
                                                                                                  • Grief: Losing a loved one causes a wide range of emotions including shock, guilt, depression, despair and loneliness.

                                                                                                  How to Tackle Constant Fatigue

                                                                                                  Here are 12 ways you can start tackling the causes of fatigue and start feeling more energetic.

                                                                                                  1. Tell The Truth

                                                                                                  Some people can numb themselves to the fact that they are overtired or fatigued all the time. In the long run, this won’t help you.

                                                                                                  To give you the best chance to overcome or eliminate fatigue, you must diagnose and tell the truth about the things that are draining your energy, making you tired or causing constant fatigue.

                                                                                                  Once you’re honest with yourself about the activities you’re doing in your life that you find irritating, energy-draining, and make you tired on a regular basis you can make a commitment to stop doing them.

                                                                                                  The help that you need to overcome fatigue is available to you, but not until you tell the truth about it. The first person you have to sell on getting rid of the causes of fatigue is yourself.

                                                                                                  One starting point is to diagnose the symptoms. When you start feeling stressed, overtired or just not operating at your normal energy levels make a note of:

                                                                                                  • How you feel
                                                                                                  • What time of day it is
                                                                                                  • What may have contributed to your fatigue
                                                                                                  • How your mind and body reacts

                                                                                                  This analysis may help you identify, understand and then eliminate very specific causes.

                                                                                                  2. Reduce Your Commitments

                                                                                                  When we have too many things on our plate personally and professionally, we can feel overstretched, causing physical and mental fatigue.

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                                                                                                  If you have committed to things you really don’t want to do, this causes irritability and low emotional engagement. Stack these up throughout your day and week, then your stress levels will rise.

                                                                                                  When these commitments have deadlines associated with them, you may be trying to cram in far too much in a short period of time.  This creates more stress and can affect your decision making ability.

                                                                                                  Start being realistic about how much you can get done. Either reduce the commitments you have or give yourself more time to complete them in.

                                                                                                  3. Get Clear On Your Priorities

                                                                                                  If working on your list of to-do’s or goals becomes too overwhelming, start reducing and prioritizing the things that matter most.

                                                                                                  Start with prioritizing just 3 things every day. When you complete those 3 things, you’ll get a rush of energy and your confidence will grow.

                                                                                                  If you’re trying to juggle too many things and are multi-tasking, your energy levels will drop and you’ll struggle to maintain focus.

                                                                                                  Unfinished projects can make you self-critical and feel guilty which drops energy levels further, creating inaction.

                                                                                                  Make a list of your 3 MIT (Most Important Tasks) for the next day before you go to bed. This will stop you overcommitting and get you excited about what the next day can bring.

                                                                                                  4. Express More Gratitude

                                                                                                  Gratitude and confidence are heavily linked. Just being thankful for what you have and what you’ve achieved increases confidence and makes you feel more optimistic.

                                                                                                  It can help you improve your sense of wellbeing, which can bring on feelings of joy and enthusiasm.

                                                                                                  Try starting a gratitude journal or just note down 3 things you’re grateful for every day.

                                                                                                  5. Focus On Yourself

                                                                                                  Exhaustion and fatigue can arrive by focusing solely on other people’s needs all the time, rather than worrying about and focusing on what you need (and want).

                                                                                                  There are work commitments, family commitments, social commitments. You may start with the best intentions, to put in your best performance at work, to be an amazing parent and friend, to simply help others.

                                                                                                  But sometimes, we extend ourselves too much and go beyond our personal limits to help others. That’s when constant exhaustion can creep up on us.  Which can make us more fatigued.

                                                                                                  We all want to help and do our best for others, but there needs to be some balance. We also need to take some time out just for ourselves to recharge and rejuvenate.

                                                                                                  6. Set Aside Rest and Recovery Time

                                                                                                  Whether it’s a couple of hours, a day off, a mini-break or a proper holiday, time off is essential to help us recover, recharge and refocus.

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                                                                                                  Recovery time helps fend off mental fatigue and allows us to simply kick back and relax.

                                                                                                  The key here, though, is to remove ourselves from the daily challenges that bring on tiredness and fatigue. Here’s how.

                                                                                                  Can you free yourself up completely from work and personal obligations to just rest and recover?

                                                                                                  7. Take a Power Nap

                                                                                                  When you’re feeling tired or fatigued and you have the ability to take a quick 20-minute nap, it could make a big difference to your performance for the rest of the day.

                                                                                                  Napping can improve learning, memory and boost your energy levels quickly.

                                                                                                  This article on the benefit of napping is a useful place to start if you want to learn more: How a 20-Minute Nap at Work Makes You Awake and Productive the Whole Day

                                                                                                  8. Take More Exercise

                                                                                                  The simple act of introducing some form of physical activity into your day can make a huge difference. It can boost energy levels, make you feel much better about yourself and can help you avoid fatigue.

                                                                                                  Find something that fits into your life, be that walking, going to the gym, running or swimming. 

                                                                                                  The key is to ensure the exercise is regular and that you are emotionally engaged and committed to stick with it.

                                                                                                  You could also walk more which will help clear your head and shift your focus away from stressful thoughts.

                                                                                                  9. Get More Quality Sleep

                                                                                                  To avoid tiredness, exhaustion and fatigue, getting enough quality sleep matters. 

                                                                                                  Your body needs sleep to recharge.  Getting the right amount of sleep every night can improve your health, reduce stress levels and help us improve our memory and learning skills.

                                                                                                  My previous article on The Benefits of Sleep You Need to Know will give you some action steps to start improving your sleep. 

                                                                                                  10. Improve Your Diet

                                                                                                  Heavy or fatty meals can make you feel sluggish and tired, whilst some foods or eating strategies do just the opposite.

                                                                                                  Our always on lives have us reaching for sweets or other sugary snacks to give us a burst of energy to keep going. Unfortunately, that boost fades quickly which can leave you feeling depleted and wanting more.

                                                                                                  On the other hand, whole grains and healthy unsaturated fats supply the reserves you can draw on throughout the day.

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                                                                                                  To keep energy up and steady, it’s a good idea to limit refined sugar and starches.

                                                                                                  Eating small meals and healthy snacks every few hours throughout the day provides a steady supply of nutrients to body and brain. It’s also important not to skip breakfast.

                                                                                                  Eating a balanced diet helps keep your blood sugar in a normal range and prevents that sluggish feeling when your blood sugar drops.

                                                                                                  11. Manage Your Stress Levels

                                                                                                  Stress is one of the leading causes of exhaustion and fatigue, and can seriously affect your health.

                                                                                                  When you have increased levels of stress at work and at home, it’s easy to feel exhausted all the time. 

                                                                                                  Identifying the causes of stress and then tackling the problems should be a priority. 

                                                                                                  My article on How to Help Anxiety When Life is Stressing You Out shares 16 strategies you can use to overcome stress.

                                                                                                  12. Get Hydrated

                                                                                                  Sometimes we can be so busy that we forget to keep ourselves fully hydrated.

                                                                                                  Water makes up about 60 percent of your body weight and is essential in maintaining our body’s basic functions.

                                                                                                  If we don’t have enough water, it can adversely affect our mental and physical performance, which leads to tiredness and fatigue.

                                                                                                  The recommended daily amount is around two litres a day, so to stay well hydrated keep a water bottle with you as much as possible.

                                                                                                  The Bottom Line

                                                                                                  These 12 tips can help you reduce your tiredness and feeling of fatigue.  Some will work better than others as we are all different, whilst others can be incorporated together in your daily life.

                                                                                                  If you’ve tried to make positive changes to reduce fatigue and you still feel tired and exhausted, it may be time to consider making an appointment with your doctor to discuss your condition.

                                                                                                  Featured photo credit: Annie Spratt via unsplash.com

                                                                                                  Reference

                                                                                                  [1]Oxford English Dictionary: Definition of fatigue
                                                                                                  [2]NHS Choices: 10 Reasons for feeling tired
                                                                                                  [3]Verywellhealth: What is chronic fatigue syndrome
                                                                                                  [4]Everyday Health: Why does type 2 diabetes make you feel tired
                                                                                                  [5]Mayo Clinic: Sleep apnea
                                                                                                  [6]Harvard Health: The lowdown on thyroid slowdown

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