The traditional eight-hour workday takes an immense toll on our bodies, and that’s even before we factor in overtime, commuting, and the other stresses of modern life. As a species, we’re better at working in short intervals, so it’s common to feel tired and low energy after a few hours of working.
During these moments of weakness, we often turn to candy bars and caffeinated drinks to help see us through. Yes, sugar and caffeine offer a short-term pick-me-up, but they do so by messing with our body’s regular function. Ultimately, they result in a crash that can leave you feeling even worse.
So, what healthy steps can you take to boost your energy that can easily fit into a typical working day?
1—Start as you mean to go on
A healthy high-fiber breakfast can set you up better for the day. Because the energy from fiber-rich food is released slowly into your system, it’s easier to manage your energy levels throughout the day.
Those who skip breakfast and later gorge on sweet snacks to make up for it are setting themselves up for failure as their body goes through cycles of boosts and crashes.
For many people, their daily feeling of fatigue comes about because they fail to drink enough liquids. Even mild dehydration leads to feelings of tiredness, and it’s not always easy to diagnose this as the root cause of your fatigue.
Always keep a cold bottle of water on your desk and sip from it liberally. Hopping to the fridge to refill it is a simple way to keep a little bit of exercise in your routine, too.
3—Short burst of exercise
Exercise boosts your energy by delivering a super shot of oxygen to your muscles, brain, and heart. All too often, we tell ourselves that getting more exercise when working isn’t practical, but the difference is as simple as occasionally standing up to take a phone call or choosing to take the stairs to the kitchen instead of the elevator.
4—Keep your magnesium and folic acid topped up
If you need a small snack, consider eating just a few peanuts or almonds. You’ll get a burst of magnesium and folic acid, both important for energy production.
It’s best to keep this type of snack portioned in advance, as it’s easy to absent-mindedly eat them while you’re working if you don’t set yourself a limit. Nuts have a high fat and calorie content, so they’re best eaten in small quantities.
5—Get some sun
Sunlight boosts the brain’s chemical serotonin, giving you more energy and helping to keep you focused, calm, and positive. Getting a little sun each day makes following the right routine easier. Because you’ve looked after your emotional well-being, you’re in a better mood to keep your physical health in top condition.
It’s easily possible to add these little changes into your routine and within a week they’ll be second nature.