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Energy

Need An Energy Boost? 7 Tips to Help You Rock the Casbah (Part 2)

May 5, 2011

I’m Kim.
I’m an M.D.-turned-coach and I’m dedicated to helping you build your dream career + lifestyle. Welcome to my blog, where I write (and podcast) about wellness, business + success!
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Lost your zip? Too tired to even…go shopping?

As promised, here’s another disco of energy-boosting ideas. (See here for my first 3 tips)

1. Drink Up

Mild dehydration can easily creep up on you.  Trouble is, even slight dehydration can sap your vigor—your body has to work harder to pump a smaller blood volume around. 

Using thirst to dictate your fluid intake? Not a good idea. Thirst is a poor indicator; by the time you’re craving that cool drink your body is already withering.

Instead, aim to sip throughout the day.  Try drinking a glass of water first thing in the morning, just before bed, and with each meal.  Or keep a water bottle on your desk, and refill it when you take breaks.

Eight glasses a day is a reasonable guideline, but everyone’s requirements are different.  Ensure you drink enough so you’re going to the ladies’ room every two to four hours. 

2. Eat for Energy

To fuel your body, you need food.  But will any type of food do?  Nope. 

Despite the bad image carbs have received, they’re still you’re body’s first choice for energy.  It’s complex carbohydrates that you want, however—like whole grains, sweet potatoes, squash, pumpkin and carrots.  Unlike simple sugars that give you a burst of energy and then a dip, complex carbs are absorbed and digested slowly.  This keeps your blood sugar level constant. 

Fibre is also important for sustained blood sugar.  Fibre causes the body to absorb carbs more slowly.  So choose whole grains over white bread, rice, and pasta.

Protein is the other important food that will deliver a slow, steady burn of energy.  Choose lean, unprocessed sources: chicken, fish, nuts and legumes.

3. Seek Balance

Women are master multitaskers.  We have busy lives and competing priorities.  But sometimes we simply spread ourselves too thin.  If you’ve got too much going on, perhaps it’s time to make a change.  If your va-va-voom is suffering, your body is telling you something.  Listen to it. 

Start by paring your priority list. Take that long put-off vacation. Make time for yourself. Soak in a bubble bath, stretch out in yoga class, indulge in a full spa massage, listen to music, rent a comedy and laugh your heart out.

4. Get Moving

Too tired to open a soup can?  Why not go for a jog instead?

Yes it sounds illogical, but you’ll be surprised at the effect exercise can deliver.  Physical activity gets your limbs moving, your blood flowing and your heart pumping.  It’s invigorating.  And, if you start exercising regularly, you’ll enjoy other energizing benefits.  Like stress reduction and better sleep. 

What’s more, I can almost guarantee that catching a glimpse in the mirror of a trimmer silhouette will perk up your day.

5. Lose weight

If you were forced to drag twenty-pound dumbbells around all day, you’d find yourself tiring easily, right?  It’s the same when your body’s own frame is carrying that excess weight.

A fitter, leaner you will move confidently and rock it with way more energy.

Of course, losing weight is easier said than done.  But the changes that will help you ditch those extra pounds—exercising more, eating a healthier diet—are things that will also give you pep in the short term.  So, even before you notice that your pants aren’t quite so snug, you should be feeling uplifted.

Energizing bonus of weight loss?  A fab excuse for a brand-new wardrobe.

6. Recharge

Sometimes, the answer to our troubles is the simplest one.  Tired throughout the day?  Perhaps you need to get more sleep. 

Think of your cell phone.  If you don’t recharge it, it cuts out (well, after it does that incredibly annoying beeping thing). Your body works the same way. You’ve got to recharge. Superwoman you might be, but we all need sleep. 

Research shows that people who are sleep-deprived have poor concentration, a crummy sense of humour, and increased health issues.

Everyone has different sleep requirements, but it’s usually somewhere between seven and nine hours per night.  Experiment a little to figure out your ideal quota, then stick to it.

It’s not always easy to get the sleep we need, of course.  Yes, you could always get one more task done if you postpone bedtime, but you’re going to suffer in the long run.  So, lights out, please.

7. Deal with Stress

Stress is the scourge of our modern lives.  Truth be told, it’s the reason lurking behind a huge proportion of doctor’s visits.  And it’s the core factor beneath an awful lot of fatigue.

It’s not that you’re merely imagining your dwindling energy.  It’s more than that.  A deep mind-body connection exists that we don’t fully understand.  But we do know that stress exerts a harmful effect on our health and sense of well-being. 

Is your fatigue truly due to deep-down stress?  The only person who can answer this is you.  You need to take a penetrating look at your life. And be straight with yourself.

Whether it’s a stressful job, relationship troubles, financial worries or something else, it’s time to stop ignoring it.  You have to face up to the big stressors in your life and deal with them. (Read this for 50 tips on dealing with stress)

Don’t tackle all of the above at once. Start with the ideas that most capture your fancy, and get set to rediscover some pizzazz.  Not just to make it through your ‘to do’ list, but also to enjoy life more. 

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