Going through your week feeling tired no matter what you do? Try these 5 easy ways to increase energy naturally.
Between caffeine crashes and sugar crashes you may feel like you can barely keep your eyes open anymore, AND IT’S ONLY 4 P.M. Here’s what you can do to increase energy naturally. Even though caffeine is a natural stimulant, we’re going to look at mainly caffeine-free options:
1. Do 20 minutes of cardio every day
Get your heart rate up and blood flow pumping as early in the day as you can. You don’t even need a gym membership. Do a quick 15-20 minute circuit at home, grab a jump rope and do 60 second intervals, or go out for a power walk or jog. Do this 4-5 days per week and you’ll instantly feel more energy throughout the day.
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2. Avoid simple sugars during the day
Simple sugars like juice, candy, sorbet, and pancakes are more likely to spike your blood sugar consequently leading to a blood sugar crash that will leave you feeling sluggish for hours. Avoid simple sugars and white breads by replacing them with whole grains, fruit, vegetables, oats and other high-fiber carbohydrates.
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3. Eat more high-fiber, high energy foods
Fiber helps regulate blood sugar and prevent insulin spiking which will help that inevitable sugar crash. High energy (high in healthy fat) foods like nuts will provide a large dose of calories to keep you going without spiking blood sugar. Try eating 1/2 oz. of roasted almonds with breakfast.
4. Eat 4-5 small, balanced meals per day
Providing your body with balanced doses of carbohydrates, protein, fiber, fat, vitamins, water and minerals throughout the day should prevent that mid-day slump associated with the 3 large meals per day diet. It’s like having adequate nutrition on a continuous drip into your bloodstream versus getting large doses in 5 hour intervals.
5. Limit your caffeine intake and space out doses by 5-6 hours
I couldn’t talk about energy without bringing up caffeine, no matter how hard I tried. The half life of caffeine is roughly 5 hours, so I generally try to space out my doses by 5 hours. Drink your first cup of coffee, tea, or energy drink first thing in the morning. Have your next dose about 5 hours later if you need it and try to cut that dose in half and see if that’s enough to spark some energy without keeping you up all night. Nobody said you have to fill your coffee cup to the brim every time.
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