After a long weekend you find yourself positively exhausted. Unfortunately an equally long week with lots of deadlines lies ahead. Further to that, you have to take the children to kindergarten, walk the dog, stand in line for over half an hour to pay the bills… and all you want is some shut-eye. We are all awfully familiar with that situation. So we will share a few tricks that will help you find out how to be energetic all day. We found them after digging through countless medical studies and research papers.
16 Proven Ways to Maintain Your Energy Throughout the Day
Wake Up, Sleeping Beauty!
In the morning, your body gets ready for the day by shooting a cortisol dose that helps you wake up. When you hit the snooze button, that dose is wasted and your hormonal cycle is disrupted because you’ll need another dose when you wake up again.
Let There Be Light!
Natural light helps our bodies set their internal clock and decreases the production of melatonin, a sleep hormone. Leave your curtains open, as this is the best answer to how to be energetic all day. If you can’t sleep with the curtains open, then pull them as soon as you wake up and bathe in the sunlight.
Take Your Time
Try to wake up a little before the kids, so you’ll have time for a shower and to slowly ease into your day. Avoid reading your emails or thinking about the chores of the day, because this will leave you exhausted even before the day starts.
Schedule Your Coffee Time
The same dose of cortisol that wakes you up will be wasted if overlapped with coffee. The rhythm of your body is a strong ally in fighting tiredness. Knowing that you get daily cortisol doses between 8 and 9 in the morning and 16-17 in the afternoon, you can time your coffee at least one hour after each cortisol dose, when the levels are low again.
Enjoy Your Breakfast
If you want to know how to be energetic all day, here’s your answer. The body clock is regulated by light, sleeping, and eating habits. Having breakfast is the polite way to announce your body to prepare for the day.
Control Your Cravings
Cortisol is the culprit for sweets and carb cravings, which is why we tend to overindulge when we’re tired. Try to make the healthy choice even if it’s difficult. Instead of ordering a pizza, switch to protein and slow carbs, such as those in leafy greens. Cortisol not only makes you sluggish, it also makes you fat, since it encourages the body to deposit fats around the waist.
Stretch at Your Desk
We all sag while sitting at the desk, so take a few minutes to stretch your back and legs after sitting for a while. It would be great if you could do this every hour or so, but two or three stretching sessions are better than nothing.
Take a Walk
When you’re tired, strenuous exercise can do more harm than good. We all know that having a good gym routine is a good answer to how to be energetic all day, but we’re only capable of intense effort when we’re properly rested. Take a 15 minute walk when you feel like you’re about to fall asleep. If you can walk somewhere in nature, where you have plenty of natural light and a green background, that’s even better.
Relax Your Eye Muscles
Take a 5 minute break and just watch the sky outside the window. Watching our computers screen from point blank distance for hours is harmful for both your mind and eyesight. Just stare into distance a little to relax your eyes.
The Napoleon Nap
Napoleon was said to have survived his campaigns with as little as 4 hours of sleep in total. The secret to this is to take a short, 20 minute nap whenever you can. This solution is not great for those in an office; however, it can help when you work from home.
Avoid Large Meals
The blood rushes from the brain to the stomach whenever you eat. The larger the meal, the more blood will be needed for digestion, which is why heavy meals leave you in a thick brain fog.
Do Your Routine Blood Tests
Sure, this is not a quick solution, but permanently having a good control over your state of health can push you through the hardest times. If your standard blood checks don’t include hormone testing, as it often happens, make an investment to check your blood every 2 or 3 years, even if it means to pay it out of your own pocket. You’ll get back the money by having more power to work.
Eat Actual Food
If it comes in a wrapping or box, that’s not food. This is the most common cause of fatigue and your answer to how to be energetic all day. Your brain needs all kinds of macronutrients for being healthy and performing at its best. Those are the building blocks of the neurotransmitters that intermediate mental effort.
Take a Deep Breath
Not just one breath but put aside a little time to do breathing exercises. Slowly take a breath in while relaxing your abdomen. Feel the air lowering your diaphragm, the muscle that separates the chest from the abdomen. Hold it in for a few seconds, and then release. Continue for a few minutes. This relaxes you and promotes wakefulness by sending more oxygen to your brain.
Unwind and Relax
We’re not advising here to just slump on the couch, but to do controlled exercises. Feel every muscle tissue in your body and relax them. Start with your head and carefully move on to your feet. Repeat when you feel the muscle tensing back.
This is a bit tricky to do if you’re not experienced, but you’ll get the feel after trying it for a few times. Mindfulness, or mediation, is a state in which you feel detached from your feelings of stress. Not many know that you can practice it all the time, by consciously surveying your actions and emotions while you do something else. On a longer term, mindfulness was shown to reduce stress, which would help release your oppressed creativity.