“Why do I feel so tired all the time?”, you might ask.
Well, it’s a common concern these days as more and more people spend their afternoons fading into a stupor that they can’t recover from. Everyone is used to feeling exhausted after a long work-filled schedule, but chronical low energy can be a symptom of something far more worrying. If you aren’t suffering from the flu but still feel like your energy levels are eternally tanked, it might be time to investigate ways to perk yourself up again.
Which is why you’re probably here — because you need answers.
Let me provide you with some context. Some context about my life. I work at home — so a big part of my day (or most of my day), I’m typically in front of the computer writing, going through emails, coming up with ideas of things I want to write about and that is generally 70% of my day.
Despite my rather sedentary job, or lack of physical exercise to develop a task — I still feel tired, regardless. So what’s up with that? Well, in recent months I’ve realized that I’ve been descending a slippery slope that could potentially lead to a rather scary future… were I to continue this seemingly productive, yet low-active lifestyle read from an exercise and social perspective.
Alas, things had to change, and what I’m about to share with you, is what makes me feel better, and basically with more energy to spare.
Want More Energy? Exercise.
Staying active and energetic is one of the most important things you can do for your health. Lack of physical activity can lead to depression, weight gain, and lower motivation to do your best work. So, if you find yourself constantly choosing a siesta over a workout, it’s time to address the reason for your exhaustion and bolster up your energy levels.
Subscribe monthly to your nearby gym and hit the treadmill for a 20-minute run. The simple idea of being active will instantly lift up your mood and fill you with energy, and the best thing is you don’t need more than 20 minutes to actually work (and sculpt) your body to a level you’re happy with.
What Foods Are You Eating? Eat Well.
If you don’t monitor the quality of carbs you eat each day, you are likely to send your body through cycles of sugar highs and crashes as it processes these ingredients, leaving you feeling depleted. A better idea is to fill up on complex carbs like brown rice and whole grains so that you don’t wear yourself out from uneven energy levels.
Iron is another essential micronutrient that your body uses to produce energy from glucose, which is the primary fuel source for both your body and your brain. Without an adequate iron supply, you’ll feel yourself fading fast. Start taking a daily iron supplement to alleviate the problem, or, better yet, fill up on iron-rich foods like whole grains, and leafy greens like kale and spinach.
B Vitamins are responsible for fueling your body with the carbs, proteins, and fats it needs to function without fatigue, so taking a daily B-multivitamin is a good idea if you don’t get enough from wholegrain foods or other animal-nutrients.
Just Go Outside, For Real.
Sometimes all it takes to break up the tedium of your day is some time in the fresh air to wake up your senses and restore your levels of alertness. Don’t be ashamed to walk away from your desk and take a quick walk around the block so you can start feeling better.
One thing I like to personally suggest people is going outside, walk for a bit, and just start a conversation with a random stranger or someone you’d typically like to have a conversation with (the beautiful lady at the cafe, for instance). I can assure you the exchange will have you feeling better, and it will light up your mood.
We’re social beings… and when you don’t push those feelings and words out into the world, it feels like you’re holding a 10kg bag of potatoes on your shoulders. Unleash the burden, yo.
Master The Power Nap.
A well-timed power nap can reverse the effects of information overload, help you retain what you’ve learned, and even improve your output over an entire day.
Anything from 25 to 60 minutes seems to be ideal, any longer and you might wake up feeling too tired or slumped.
If you can’t nap, even closing your eyes and getting into a meditative state for a few minutes can give your tired brain the break it needs to feel rejuvenated once again.
Meditation – The Secret of Many.
Meditation. A habit I’ve tried to implement religiously on a daily basis but find it very hard to maintain. Although I must confess, each time I do it, I do feel something. A surge of energy and an abstract equilibrium that allows me to fleet throughout the rest of the day peacefully, as well as an empowering surgical ability to make more conscious decisions towards a brighter future.
And when I say surgical ability, it feels more like an instinct. It’s a very powerful feeling, nonetheless.
Get Enough Sleep.
Eight hours of sleep should be the bare minimum for healthy adults, as this is the time when your cells can process the protein they need to repair themselves. Likewise, a lack of sleep will make it harder for you to concentrate during the day and even weaken your immune system.
Sleeping early and waking up early is one of the keys to being successfully productive.
Cut Back On Caffeine.
As much as you might want to rely on that afternoon cup of coffee to wake up each day, it’s not a good habit to get into, without the due care. Caffeine stimulates the stress hormone production in your body, which tempers the energy boost it provides with anxiety and irritability.
Additionally, caffeine also stimulates the liver to produce more glucose into the bloodstream, which consequently creates the infamous sugar highs that are followed by a drop in blood sugar — which is basically a drop in energy levels or a craving for more coffee (and sugar).
To this I say, live life in moderation. If you can’t cut back on caffeine because you love the aroma and taste of pure, Colombia coffee… well, try the decaffeinated version.
Drink More Water.
Any number of things can dehydrate your cells from alcohol consumption to central heating, but drinking plenty of water will keep you in better health. Thirst is often a leading cause of fatigue, so carrying a water bottle around with you might prove to be the best way to perk yourself up during a sleepy period.
I know, I know. Traveling with a bottle isn’t the most practical thing to do, but when you weigh both benefits and drawbacks, there’s nothing better to drink than water. Both on a mechanical level and just the way your skin shines after you implement the healthy habit of drinking 1.5L of water every single day.
Side Effects Of Food Or Medication
It is conceivable that you might have a food allergy and you are not even aware of it.
Sometimes, food sensitivities lead to side effects such as fatigue and can lower your energy levels enough to cause you to be tired throughout the day.
Fatigue is also a common side effect of certain medications. Before starting a new medicine, it’s imperative you check the label and get some professional advice about it. Sometimes this side effect will go away with time, but if it is impacting your lifestyle to a point where you cannot function, you may want to talk to your doctor about switching to a medication that allows you go about your day with more sustainable energy levels — allowing you to be more productive.
And this is very important in today’s society, where you are deemed useful or useless based on your performance. To better handle the stress and pressure of ongoing competitivity, it’s important that you find different ways to really maintain your energy levels high, especially at a point which you are meant to be most productive during the day.
Furthermore, and I’m sorry to backtrack a bit, but you need to really understand if your condition is not deemed an actual disease. So yes…
Check Your Health, Please.
If you are inexplicably low on energy on a regular basis, the problem might stem from a medical condition.
Anemia, sleep apnea, thyroid disease, heart disease, a blood sugar imbalance (like diabetes), chronic fatigue syndrome or even depression are among the severe cases that can cause low energy levels. You need to really be introspective and not be emotional about pondering whether you should visit a doctor or not…
… Just do it and fully understand if your lack of energy is a fairly solvable issue, or not.
Please leave a comment below, if you’ve suffered from this particular issue, and if you’d like to help others counter this problem, as it seems to affect a whole deal of people nowadays.