This Vlogger Claims Her Extensions Ruined Her Hair—So She Shaved Her Head Bald in Viral Video + MORE

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Want to Lose Weight Walking? Do This One Thing

– health.com

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Maybe you got a fitness tracker for the holidays and are feeling inspired to log a few extra miles a week. Or maybe you enjoy walking as a form of regular exercise, but are curious as to how you can slim down doing it. Whatever your reason, it's easier than you think to torch serious calories by simply moving your right foot in front of your left.

So here's how you take your walking routine to the next level: “Set mini goals for yourself during your walk. For example, if you’re taking your workout outdoors, try pacing as quickly as you can to the next stop sign. If you’re on a treadmill, do the same by setting a time goal that you can look forward to achieving," advises Christine DiBugnara, National Director of Group Fitness and Programming, UFC GYM. "Not only will this feel great to achieve, but it will make your workout go by much quicker.”

If you're walking with a friend or loved one, test each other to fun mini challenges along the way like walking as quickly as you can to your favorite workout tune while the other does walking lunges and then switching roles. As you set and break your mini goals, you'll likely begin to burn more calories with every workout and build your endurance, too.

To steal a line from Hippocrates, "walking is man's best medicine." See, even the 5th century BC Greek physician knew it sure ain't running.

This Vlogger Claims Her Extensions Ruined Her Hair—So She Shaved Her Head Bald in Viral Video

– health.com

Long waves, a lavender lob, a red top knot, bangs, braids, you name it—a quick scroll through YouTube star Vanessa Martinez’s Instagram page, and it’s clear she’s not afraid to take style risks when it comes to her hair, and the results are always chic and cool.

Even with her constantly-changing appearance, Martinez’s 585,000 Instagram followers and 2.1 million YouTube subscribers were shocked when she unveiled a totally new look recently: a completely bald head. And Martinez didn’t just break the news with a selfie; she posted an eleven minute video of her shaving her head, complete with an explanation for her desire to "start over" with her hair.

At the start of the video, Martinez has long extensions, which she cites as the main culprit for inspiring her to make the change. She claims that as a result of adding on more and more extensions and making drastic hair changes, her natural hair had become damaged and sparse.

"I’m just making myself balder and balder, so why don’t I just cut all my hair off and start over?" she says in the video.

According to Jeanine Downie, MD, a dermatologist from Montclair, New Jersey, hair breakage, damage, and loss can all be common side effects when wearing heavy extensions. "My experience is that many people sew in their weaves too tight and they break hair and can cause bald patches," she tells Health. "Other people use glue and the glue is a chemical irritant to the scalp and that can also call small or large bald patches."

During the video, Martinez and a friend are all smiles as they snip and shave her hair away. It's not every day you see a young girl shave her head in an eleven-minute video montage, but it’s clear that Martinez is confident in her decision.

"You guys, hair grows back," she declares, at once reassuring both her viewers and herself. When the shave is complete, she's unable to stop touching and rubbing her newly bare head. In a pinned comment, she goes on to further dismiss any negative stereotypes about bald women: "Being bald is not ugly. [Its] not disgusting. [Its] not weird. If you are going bald due to illness, stress whatever the case, you are still beautiful."

The video currently boasts 782,000 views and counting, with an impressive 55,000 "thumbs up" from Martinez’s supportive following. The comments section below the video is a mix of fans praising her bravery and beauty and others offering advice for Martinez’s new healthy hair journey.

"I feel very liberated," Martinez writes. "New trend, new bald, 2018!"

We think the vlogger looks gorgeous both with and without her strands, and we admire her for taking her hair health into her own hands. For those interested in keeping up with Martinez and her new look, she mentions that she might start a hair-growing series on her YouTube channel to continue documenting her fresh start.

This Device Turns Your Planks Into a Video Game–and It’s Actually Fun!

– health.com

At first glance, the Stealth Core Trainer might remind you of a piece of workout gear from a late-night infomercial. (Anyone else remember the Ab Dolly?) But unlike the as-seen-on-TV equipment now gathering dust under countless beds around the country, the Stealth gadget involves an addictive video game that might just help you stick to a regular core workout. The device and its app actually make planks fun.

Skeptical? Here’s how it works: The Stealth is like a balance board. The platform sits on an unstable base, and you rest your forearms on top, in plank position. Between your arms, there is a slot for your phone.

Once you hit start on the video game, you play by changing your plank position ever so slightly to explode colorful targets. Each round consists of isometric plank holds, subtle forward and backward tilts, and twists and dips to work your obliques.

There are two models, the Personal ($199, amazon.com), which is a little smaller, a bit cheaper, and meant for at-home use; and the Professional ($299, amazon.com), which is designed for use in gyms.

Fresh off a recent plank challenge of my own, I was psyched when the folks at Stealth offered to send me a trainer to try. It took just a few attempts for me to get the hang of it. I learned quickly that the faster I shifted around in plank position, the more points I could rack up in the game before my core started trembling and I had to call it quits. Surprisingly, time flew by–and before I knew it, a minute was up. After two weeks, I could hold a plank for 90 seconds–and I had nearly tripled my score from 41 to 111.

RELATED: 27 Fat-Burning Ab Exercises (No Crunches!)

More than a little competitive, I felt a twinge of pride every time I hit a new record time, or a new high score. If I didn't beat my score the following day, what was even the point of trying?! (Okay maybe I'm too competitive.) But seriously, knowing you can probably eke out a few more points each day may be enough to keep you coming back for more, too. 

I made an account so I could log onto the app and see how my scores compared to other Stealth plankers. I tinkered with the filters on the leaderboard, and found that sorting by age, sex, and location revealed some impressive stats: Other women my age in the U.S. were racking up hundreds and hundreds of points; some were holding planks for longer than five minutes. With some diligence, I figured I could crack the top 20–a new competitive drive to keep me hooked!

But there was one downside I discovered: While becoming hyper-focused on my score was 100% helpful in terms of distracting me from the slow tick-tock of the clock, I began sacrificing good plank form to score additional points in the game. On certain days, my arms and shoulders felt like they got a better workout than my core–and I knew I needed to refocus on dominating the game from my abs…

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Want to Lose Weight Walking? Do This One Thinghealth.com
This Vlogger Claims Her Extensions Ruined Her Hair—So She Shaved Her Head Bald in Viral Videohealth.com
This Device Turns Your Planks Into a Video Game–and It’s Actually Fun!health.com

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