A few years ago my life was kinda struggly. Not struggly in terms of not-making-it-struggly, but struggly as in oh-my-gawwwwwdddd-I’m-so-tired-body-drag-yawwwwwnnn kinda struggly. I had zero energy! It was a constant battle just to get through the day. I would down a cup of coffee as I started my day and by mid-day I was struggling just to get through the remainder of my duties. So I would reach for the sugary sweets and energy drinks for a quick burst to end the day promptly. Needless to say by the time I got home I was a wired hangry (hungry+angry) ball of negative volts zapping anyone who came within a mile of my presence. Yes I knew these were terrible energy enhancers to indulge in but believe me, I continued on this horrible path until I found myself completely burnt out. This was when I decided to make a real effort to change my horrible habits. About a year later, I was enjoying the benefits of being energized in healthier ways and could actually feel the difference! Here is what I did to increase my energy:
Get Proper Rest at night!
Nothing quite effectively ruins a productive day like a tired ole sour puss. If tossing and turning is ruining your nightly rest AND you’re waking up sour-faced, you need to figure out WHY and remedy ASAP! Lack of sleep could be the very key why everything is going wrong in your life. Your body is like an engine. It requires fuel, maintenance, regulation, repair, and rest. Constantly depriving your body of rest will eventually catch up with you and manifest itself in some pretty nasty ways. And I’m not just talking about the newly acquired raccoon-rimmed eyes and “staaanky-butt” attitude (because lack of sleep will morph you into a miserable human being). Studies show that sleep deprivation can lead to weight gain, Diabetes, clumsiness, fatigue, irritability, heart disease and many other issues that will interfere with your life. Come on folks! Nobody wants to be known as the face-eating dragon at work nor do you want added health issues. Choose the calm! Set a time to go to bed. When you do, turn off ALL electronics and drift off. If you have trouble falling asleep use an herbal sleep aid 30 minutes before going to bed. Popular options include Chamomile tea, Valerian root, or Neem Leaf Capsules (all of which I’ve had great success with for sleep issues in the past). Melatonin, L-Tryptophan or 5-HTP are also other options that are known to work well (as with all things do your research and check with your doctor if you’re on medication, pregnant, nursing or have a serious illness before starting anything new). Aim to get 6-8 hours of sleep every night. You will awaken refreshed and ready to get started conquering the world!
Step 2 in ruining a productive day is skipping breakfast (or any meal for that matter). You will not get very far and overtime you will end up on a very slippery slope starting with your metabolism (eating breakfast helps you to maintain a healthy weight and stabilize your blood sugar levels). I remember when I was queen NBE: “No-Breakfast-Ever”. But yet I couldn’t figure out why it was so difficult to focus or concentrate. My irritation levels were through the roof and my energy was extremely depleted; the perfect set-up for my junk food-sugar addiction. If your body is an engine and food is fuel, try to imagine the impossible task of skipping meals (fuel), working (burning energy/fuel) attempting to accomplish ANYTHING. You are only setting yourself up for inevitable spazz-outs (irritation on steroids), unhealthy junk-food (usually sugary) binges and overeating when lunch rolls around (not productive for anyone attempting to lose weight). When you eat breakfast, you are breaking the longest fast between your last meal and rest. So imagine attempting to run your body like a car low on fuel and trying to get to your next destination. You won’t get very far. You need food (fuel) to run your body (engine). Stop playing games with your health and treat your body better than that million dollar ‘64 Ferrari! You are worth SO much more!
Eat foods that energize you!
You need to understand the impact the TYPES of foods you consume has on YOUR body and how they affect YOU (long and short-term). When I was young, foolish, and had no concept of my mortality, it was nothing to regularly devour junk food, energy drinks and sugary sweets without a care in the world. But for the life of me I couldn’t understand why I didn’t have energy unless I downed a couple Monster drinks and irnoically the energy would still fizz away eventually. Why? I didn’t fully understand what these foods were doing to my body until I changed to a healthier, wholesome REAL food diet and felt the difference. I exchanged the chips, sweets, energy drinks, and chocolate bars for fruits, veggies, nuts, whole foods, scheduled meals and healthier habits. I looked better, my skin glowed, and I felt great accomplishing so much more! This is something everyone has to experience for themselves.
While good quality foods assist in providing natural energy sometimes you just need a little bit more. The truth is, there are many factors besides food and rest that can affect your energy levels. This is where supplements or natural alternatives can assist. If you are lacking in vitamins or minerals this can affect your energy levels and the way your body functions. Everyone can benefit from a good quality multi-vitamin with added antioxidants and probiotics for maintenance.Taking multi-vitamins can ensure that you’re not lacking the recommended amounts needed if your diet(food) is poor, or you’re not eating properly. After I added in supplements (multi-vitamin, immune enhancer, Vitamin B12) my energy levels were insanely high and barely depleted during the day. I did this for 3 months and noticed the difference when I ran out of my supplements one by one. Yes—I quickly restocked and life was grand and energized again!
These adjustments changed my life! Getting proper rest at night, starting my day with breakfast, eating scheduled high-energy whole-food meals on time and adding in supplements. I felt wonderful, balanced and most importantly energized to get through my day. Everyone is different but if you’re having the “I-need-energy-struggly-life” then these are a few tips that may just enhance your life for the better!