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Health
Health and fitness blogs for 2014
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Health and fitness blogs for 2014

Health and fitness blogs for 2014
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Health and fitness blogs for 2014

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Whether you scroll through 'em while sipping that morning cup of coffee or use your lunch break to catch up on the latest news and gossip, nearly everyone reads blogs. There are thousands (if not millions) of options out there, which means it can be hard to know which writers are legit and which ones are just kinda... not so much.We picked 60 of our favorite blogs that are shaking up the health and wellness space by posting great content, interacting with readers, and generally providing kick-ass information to the Internet at large. 

Specifically, we looked for blogs that feature actionable, useful, and positive posts that reflect Greatist's mission of living a healthy and happy life. We also looked at comments and engagement with readers, social media followers, quantity of posts, and design. These 60 site aren't the only blogs you should read, but they're a good place to start. Can't get enough? Check out last year's list for even more bloggy goodness. 

Note: Blogs are arranged in no particular order — the first entry in a given section is no better than the last entry. That's just how the (gluten-free, dairy-free, no-sugar-added) cookie crumbles. 

General health and fitness

1. Breaking Muscle
No matter your workout of choice, it’s likely that Breaking Muscle has covered it: The fitness experts behind the site have written on martial arts, workouts for pregnant women, and how to execute certain lifts and master skills. They also share their opinions on popular fitness trends, give their take on health- and fitness- related studies, and provide a variety of daily workouts.

2. Food Politics
Even though she’s a published author (with eight books under her belt) and a full-time professor at New York University, Marion Nestle finds time to write lengthy, thought-provoking pieces on the politics of nutrition almost every day on her blog. From GMOs to the FDA and USDA, Nestle’s well-written articles simplify current issues in the food industry and raise important questions about our food supply.  

3. Mark Bittman
He’s one of our top influencers (two years running) and food industry crusaders, and writes a blog that’s one of our favorites on the Internet. A prolific food writer (check out his column for The New York Times and lengthy list of books), Bittman may mince garlic, but not words — his outspoken political opinions and position against factory farming make him one of the strongest voices on the food scene today.

4. Mark’s Daily Apple
What Would A Caveman Do? That’s what Mark Sisson, the voice behind Mark’s Daily Apple, surely asks himself before eating, drinking, or working out. His site is a one-stop shop for those interested in pursuing the Paleo lifestyle, with a wide variety of information ranging from workouts and recipes to personal stories and supplements.

5. NPR’s The Salt
Why do many people find sugar irresistible? What are “food hubs” and why are they important? What’s the latest food trend? These are just a few of the questions asked every day on NPR’s food blog, The Salt. The blog covers everything related to eating, including food trends, food science, and food production, with NPR’s signature all-encompassing scope and attention to detail. Plus, there’s plenty of humor. One favorite column is Sandwich Monday (McCamembert, anyone?), where members of the NPR newsroom try out famous local lunches, often with ridiculous results.

6. Precision Nutrition
As its name suggests, this company is all about teaching people how to demystify healthy eating and make smart decisions for their own personal needs. Precision Nutrition is first an online nutrition coaching biz, but the company’s blog is well worth a look. Blog posts tackle real-life issues we all face, such as “For Women: Is Taking Care of Yourself Really That Selfish?” and “The Busy Man’s Guide to Getting In Shape.”

7. Q by Equinox
With beautifully styled, fashion-editorial worthy photos and videos and plenty of celebrity endorsements, the luxurious Equinox gym chain uses its website to make health and fitness pretty darn sexy. The blog covers lifestyle topics as well as fitness, with tips on healthifying your home and ideas for outside-the-box winter vacations.

8. James Hamblin (at The Atlantic)
Our favorite fist-bumping doctor doesn’t just write about why we should ditch handshakes for good. Hamblin’s a Senior Editor at The Atlantic, where he writes about gluten, anxiety, caffeine, babies, multivitamins, sex, HIV, cats, autism, and… we think you get the picture. Hamblin publishes a new column nearly every day and, given his interest in all types of health (including mental, physical, and sexual), we don’t expect him to run out of material anytime soon.  

9. iRunnerBlog
Scott Miles from iRunnerBlog entered his first marathon in 2007. He immediately caught the running bug and began documenting his journey on iRunnerBlog. Since then, he’s expanded the site to be less of a personal blog and more of a resource for runners of all levels. Miles and his team of athletes, physical therapists, trainers, and nutritionists provide information about apparel, technique, workouts, racing, and nutrition, to name just a few topics.

10. Strength Running
Love running? According to Jason Fitzgerald, you need to learn to love strength training, too. Fitzgerald, a longtime runner and USAFT-certified running coach (andGreatist Expert!), wants to teach runners how to achieve their goals and prevent injuries through specialized workouts, recovery techniques, and strength exercises. Strength Running is a must-read site for any runner with a history of injuries (or any runner who wants to avoid an injury in the future).

11. Black Girls RUN!
Toni Carey and Ashley Hicks were shocked and saddened when they found out that according to the CDC, 80 percent of African-American women are overweight. So they founded Black Girls RUN! in 2009 to teach women about the importance of fitness and healthy living. In addition to providing training and nutrition info, the blog covers beauty and fashion. Carey and Hicks don’t just talk the talk: They’ve launched nearly 70 active running groups for African-American women across the country and encourage readers to participate in virtual races and attend fitness conferences.

12. Mile Posts
Need an inspirational story to help get out the door for that morning jog? Take a peek at Mile Posts, Dorothy Beal’s blog, which focuses on running and overcoming obstacles. After learning to manage three chronic illnesses, Beal became a dedicated runner and racer. Her blog’s loaded with fitness tips, running instructions, and, of course, motivational quotations and stories to get your engine going.

13. Oiselle
This Seattle-based women’s running apparel company manages to take the sport seriously and stay down-to-earth at the same time. Oiselle is famous for supporting female athletes, and the blog reflects this priority. Check it out to read profiles onOiselle Team runners, stretching and strengthening techniques, race recaps, Q and A’s with pro runners, and plenty of motivational personal stories.

14. Dean’s Blog
Although he’s famous in ultra-running circles, most weekend warriors have unfortunately never heard of superstar Dean Karnazes — which is why it’s great for everyone (not just 100-milers) that Runner’s World gave him his own online column. Karnazes, who has competed in and won dozens of 100-plus mile races over the past 20 years, muses about pretty much anything running-related that strikes his fancy. Dean’s Blog manages to be clever, funny, and pretty darn random all at once — it's perfect fodder for mulling over on your next (ultra) long run.

15. Ultra Runner Girl
Like many of us, human rights advisor Stephanie Case always packs running shoes when she travels for work. Unlike most nine-to-fivers, she’s trained or competed in Vietnam, Nepal, Australia, China, Afghanistan, Kyrgyzstan, Ecuador, Ethiopia, and Malaysia. She documents her travels (as well as her runs) on her blog. Whether you’re interested in humanitarian fieldwork, long-distance running, or exotic travel, her blog has a little something for everyone with an adventurous spirit.

16. Ask Lauren Fleshman
Ever wish you had a professional runner friend to field all your questions about technique, training, recovery, nutrition, and racing? Lauren Fleshman, a 15-time All-American and five-time NCAA champion middle-distance runner, is here to help. On Ask Lauren Fleshman, the pro runner answers reader questions and writes aboutbody image, motherhood, and overcoming injuries. (She even pens a few poems.)

17. Roman Fitness Systems
Self-identified badass John Romaniello is a personal trainer and author who means what he says, says what he means, and does it all with a playful goofiness that make blog posts like “Three Completely Obvious (And Free) Aspects of Rapid Fat Loss You’re Blatantly Ignoring” and “The Best Damn Cupcakes Ever” (Spoiler alert: They’re made with both bourbon and beer) as fun to read as they are informative. Make this a daily stop for detailed training advice, nutritional strategies, and more.

18. Tony Gentilcore
Tony Gentilcore is a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist who is committed to sharing his love of lifting heavy with the world. His blog posts provide in-depth descriptions of various lifts, instructions on how to improve technique, and his take on various topics in fitness and strength training. He also provides a not-to-be-missed weekly roundup of his favorite fitness and nutrition content from around the web.

19. Grit By Brit
Fitness instructor and former division-one basketball player Brit Rettig believes that mental grit, or “perseverance and passion for long term goals,” is the key to fitness success. She is as dedicated to helping readers build self-confidence and cultivate positivity as she is to providing workouts, nutritional guidance, and fitspiration.

20. Girls Gone Strong
The women behind Girls Gone Strong are on a mission to inspire and empower other women to pursue strength of both body and mind. Bloggers Neghar Fonooni, Molly Galbraith, and Alli McKee cover mastering lifts, conquering stress, understanding supplements and nutrition, and finding fitness motivation. GGS regularly turns the spotlight on its readers, highlighting their workout habits and healthy lifestyle inspirations in a feature called  “GGS Spotlight.”

21. Mobility WOD
In 2010, Doctor of Physical Therapy and CrossFit coach Kelly Starrett posted a video with instructions on how to squat deeper. In that video, he also announced that he intended to post one video on movement and mobility per day for the rest of his life. Since then, MobilityWOD.com has become a treasure trove of short videos on resolving pain, dealing with injury, and maximizing athletic potential. If you’ve had a question about a nagging workout-related ache or pain, there’s a good chance Starrett has video-blogged about it.

22. Nia Shanks
Nia Shanks backs up her no-nonsense directive to “be the most awesome and strongest version of you” with blog posts that provide as much encouragement as they do instruction. Shanks believes that lasting results come from fitness and diet regimens emphasizing strength, confidence, and empowerment (as opposed to punishing workouts and restrictive dieting). Her blog posts challenge readers to look at working out and eating healthily as steps on a journey to getting fitter, happier, and stronger.

23. Neghar Fonooni
Fitness expert Neghar Fonooni believes in “eating mindfully, training intuitively, and living joyfully,” and her blog has the fitness, nutrition, and lifestyle tips to help you do all three. Fonooni shares workouts, recipes, and her thoughts on various healthy-living related themes (moderationguiltproductive workouts, ) along with a healthy dose of positivity.

24. Mentality WOD
Dawn Fletcher coaches top-level CrossFit athletes not in strength technique or athletic conditioning, but in leveling up their mental toughness. Fletcher believes that success in the gym comes from cultivating a positive attitude, self-confidence, and a can-do sprit that celebrates achievements, takes challenges in stride, and reframes failure as something that can inspire the next success.

 25. Art of Less Doing
What is less doing? According to author Ari Meisel, it’s all about optimizing, automating, and outsourcing. The most efficient man alive uses his blog to share tips that boost efficiency, increase output, and save time. From conquering email to staying in shape, Meisel’s blog has tips and tricks to give nearly every aspect of everyday life a productivity boost. 

26. Daily Cup of Yoga
This one-stop yoga site describes itself as a source for “tips, tools, and wisdom on yoga, books, and technology.” We couldn’t have said it better ourselves. From reviewing mats, clothing, and books to discussing big topics like how to overcome unhappiness and “soul freedom,” blogger Brian Call’s site is a virtual campfire for yogis to gather around.

27. Body Love Wellness
Holistic health advocate Golda Poretsky thinks you look fine just the way you are. Body Love Wellness covers topics from self-esteem, to developing healthy relationships with food and exercise, to learning to love yourself at any weight — all with a healthy dose of humor and kindness.

28. Om Gal
Need some “om” in your life? Check out Massachusetts-based yogi Rebecca Pacheco’s blog, where yoga and stretching videos share space with philosophical musings and empowering observations. Om Gal is basically Pacheco’s online diary, but it’s definitely an interesting one — the yoga teacher recently taught a class at Boston’s Fenway Park and collaborated with Runner’s World on a series of yoga videos.

29. MindBodyGreen
Pursuing health is about so much more than eating oatmeal for breakfast and hitting the gym after work. MindBodyGreen addresses nearly every aspect of a healthy lifestyle, including far-reaching topics like relationships, finances, stress, spirituality, and overall mental health.

30. Tiny Buddha
When you could use a change in perspective, this is the place to turn for some much-needed words of wisdom. At Tiny Buddha, you’ll find quotations from sources as varied as Oprah Winfrey and F. Scott Fitzgerald. Blogger Lori Deschene uses the quotations to launch discussions on topics such as personal growth, dealing with change, and learning to forgive. 

For the full list of all 60 health and fitness blogs for 2014, go to Greatist.com.

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News

  • An off-duty Fulton County police officer shot a man after a chase in Atlanta Wednesday morning, the GBI says. The officer, whose name has not been released, was in his personal vehicle about 11 a.m., when he responded to a theft at a T-Mobile store on Mount Zion Parkway in Morrow, GBI spokesman Rich Bahan said.  The officer followed the suspect’s car into the city limits of Atlanta while reporting the incident to 911, Bahan said. At some point near Alyson Court, the two cars collided and when the driver got out of his car the off-duty officer shot him with his service weapon, Bahan said.   MORE:  Sheriff: Man out on bond for murder arrested after fighting victim’s family Ex-NFL player jailed after allegedly attacking woman in front of kids Police: Men brought ‘bag of bullets’ to shootout with alleged gang members Witness Jay Mitchell told Channel 2 Action News he thinks the man was shot in the stomach area after the police officer chased him and tried to pull him over. The suspect kept driving even after he was shot, Bahan said, and Atlanta police stopped him in the 1700 block of Lakewood Avenue. Whether the off-duty Fulton County officer stayed on the scene was not released, but his car was found parked at a store on Cleveland Avenue, Channel 2 reported. The man who was shot was taken to Grady Memorial Hospital, Bahan said. The shooting is the fourth in less than a week involving a Georgia officer. A Georgia State Patrol trooper fatally shot a man after a chase early Saturday in Polk County. Jason Dennis Watkins, 36, was taken to Polk County Hospital, where he was pronounced dead. RELATED: GSP trooper fatally shoots man after chase Willie Ivy III, 29, of Atlanta, died after a Fulton County police officer and an armed security guard shot him early Saturday in College Park, the GBI said.  RELATED: Man dead in police-involved shooting incident in College Park A Pickens County sheriff’s sergeant on Tuesday shot and critically injured Gary Lee Castle after he “moved aggressively” toward the official “with a large metal pipe in his hand,” the sheriff’s office said. RELATED: Sergeant shoots, critically injures man, Pickens County sheriff says In January and February, the GBI conducted 17 officer-involved shooting investigations, agency spokeswoman Nelly Miles said. RELATED: OVER THE LINE: Police shootings in Georgia The GBI investigated 78 police shootings in the state last year. In other news:
  • A middle school bus driver in the Valdosta area is accused of driving under the influence of alcohol while students were on her bus, according to the Lowndes County sheriff. Amanda Mullinax, 41, registered more than twice the legal limit, Lowndes County Sheriff Ashley Paulk said. A school resource officer at Hahira Middle School smelled alcohol on Mullinax, and a student said she had been drinking, the Macon Telegraph reported. The night before, deputies were called to a domestic dispute at Mullinax’s home and found she had been drinking heavily, Paulk said. RELATED: School bus driver charged in accident that injured child She could face multiple counts of child endangerment since there were about 44 students on the bus, the newspaper reported. Read more of the story here. In other news:
  • U.S. Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch vowed to uphold the law if confirmed to the nation’s highest court, not tipping his hand as he sidestepped controversial political subjects, as Gorsuch directly pushed back against President Donald Trump’s criticism of federal judges. “When anyone criticizes the honesty or integrity, the motives of a federal judge, I find that disheartening; I find that demoralizing,” Gorsuch said in response to questions from Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D-CT). “Anyone including the President of the United States?” Blumenthal pressed. “Anyone is anyone,” Gorsuch replied. In a day of testimony that stretched for almost twelve hours, Gorsuch parried most questions from Democrats, who tried in vain to get him to reveal his views on issues like abortion, and items that might come before the Supreme Court, like President Trump’s travel ban. Gorsuch repeatedly refused to take the bait. “I can’t get involved in politics, and I think it would be very imprudent of judges to start commenting on political disputes,” Gorsuch said. Under questioning from Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC), Gorsuch was asked what he had discussed with President Trump on the issue of abortion. “In that interview did he ever ask you to overrule Roe v Wade?” Graham asked. “No, Senator,” Gorsuch replied, adding that if the President had asked that question, “I would have walked out the door.” Gorsuch was pressed about the President in a number of different ways, telling Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-VT) that, “nobody is above the law in this country, and that includes the President of the United States.” With Republicans strongly in support of Gorsuch, there was already maneuvering behind the scenes over the expected floor fight in the Senate, as Democrats have made clear they think the GOP should be forced to get 60 votes for his nomination. That has prompted GOP leaders to criticize the threat of a filibuster. “If there aren’t 60 votes for a nominee like Neil Gorsuch it’s appropriate to ask the question is there any nominee any Republican president could make that Democrats would approve,” said Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell. Gorsuch’s lengthy day of testimony ended on a light note, as Sen. John Kennedy (R-LA) suggested to Gorsuch that he have a cocktail before bed. “Just don’t drink vodka,” Kennedy said to chuckles from the audience. Kennedy then drew even more laughter by adding in one more surprise. “You never been to Russia, have you?” “I’ve never been to Russia,” a smiling Gorsuch said.
  • The United States is deepening its involvement in the war against the Islamic State group after an unprecedented American airlift of Arab and Kurdish fighters to the front lines in northern Syria, supported by the first use of U.S. attack helicopters and artillery in the country. The U.S. forces didn't engage in ground combat, but the offensive suggests the Trump administration is taking an increasingly aggressive approach as it plans an upcoming assault on the extremists' self-declared capital of Raqqa. In addition to using helicopters to ferry rebels into combat near the Tabqa Dam on the Euphrates River, the U.S. also flew two Apache gunships and fired Marine 155mm artillery. 'This is pretty major,' Col. Joseph Scrocca, a spokesman for the U.S.-led military coalition that is fighting the Islamic State militants in Syria and Iraq, told reporters at the Pentagon on Wednesday. He said it was the first time U.S. forces have airlifted local fighters into combat in Syria. An undisclosed number of U.S. military advisers were inserted with the rebels. U.S. officials said the operation inserted Syrian Arab and Kurdish fighters behind Islamic State group lines west of Raqqa, subjecting the American personnel to a degree of risk previously avoided in Syria. The mission was focused on recapturing the dam, the nearby town of Tabqa and a local airfield. By design, the operation is coinciding with a potentially climactic battle for Mosul, the main Islamic State group stronghold in Iraq. Together, the battles reflect a U.S. strategy of presenting IS with multiple challenges simultaneously. Scrocca said the assault in Syria is expected to last for weeks. He said the dam has been used as an IS headquarters, prison for high-profile hostages, training camp and location for planning overseas attacks since 2013. There has been concern IS might destroy the dam, flooding the region and creating new humanitarian challenges. The U.S. airlift, known in military parlance as an air assault, marked a new level of commitment to Syria's Kurds, whose partnership with the U.S. has prompted difficult discussions with Turkey. The U.S.-NATO ally sees the Kurdish fighters as a national security threat because of their links to militants inside Turkey. Scrocca said 75 to 80 percent of the Syrian fighters who were ferried to a landing zone south of the dam were Arabs. Kurds were among the remainder, he said, without offering numbers. Although the U.S. considers the Kurds the most effective partner in Syria, Washington has been careful not to inflame tensions with Turkey by providing them heavy weapons. The Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces confirmed the U.S. airlift and said their fighters seized four villages south of the Euphrates and cut the main artery between Raqqa and northwestern Syria. Tabqa lies 45 kilometers, or about 28 miles, west of Raqqa. In Washington, the U.S. hosted top officials from 68 nations for a meeting on accelerating the fight against IS in all its dimensions. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson told the coalition's first ministerial gathering since President Donald Trump took office that the U.S. was still refining its strategy, but was clear about American priorities. 'I recognize there are many pressing challenges in the Middle East, but defeating ISIS is the United States' number one goal in the region,' Tillerson said. While that assessment appeared shared, some participants were hoping to hear more about strategy changes. As a candidate, Trump spoke boldly about overhauling former President Barack Obama's cautious approach to fighting IS. As president, Trump has moved more cautiously. At a Senate hearing Wednesday, Defense Secretary Jim Mattis told a Senate committee that the Trump strategy was still in 'skeleton' form. 'We're fleshing it out,' he said. 'It's an interagency-developed report, where it embraces economic, diplomatic, military, covert means. And we should have this done in the next couple of months, if that long. It may not even take us another month.' Mattis and other officials have strongly suggested the plan will preserve the central feature of the Obama administration's approach, namely the idea of advising and enabling local forces to fight rather than doing it for them. But as IS appears to lose strength and territory in Iraq and Syria, the U.S. is likely to bolster its support and perhaps send small numbers of additional troops. The U.S. now has about 1,000 troops in Syria. It has at least 7,000 in Iraq. ___ AP Diplomatic Writer Matthew Lee in Washington and Associated Press writer Philip Issa in Beirut contributed to this report.