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Need An Energy Boost?

Friday, April 02, 2010

Well, we're into that seemingly never ending middle part of our project. This is when the newness has worn off, possibly we've lost our enthusiasm, life experiences have interfered, any number of bumps in the road have popped up to derail our good intentions. For me, this time around, I think I'm just tired... I don't know about you guys, but I could use an energy boost. So, here we have, from My Adrenal Fatigue, a nifty list of 43 tips to boost your energy naturally.

  1. Alternate Hot and Cold in the Shower – This is a great technique to boosts metabolism, heart rate, and blood circulation. Its also great for sore muscles!

  2. Instead of Coffee Drink Green Tea – It is lower in caffeine and produces more physical energy. The reason is that it contains catchins which activate brain chemicals to increase nerve action and circulation.

  3. Chew Something – Chew some strong peppermint gum. Peppermint has long been known to have a favorable affect on energy levels.

  4. Scratch Your Head, Or Better Yet, Get Someone Else To – A good head scratch will stimulate your brain. This is because the act of scratching stimulates blood flow to the area. Also related for the same reasons, scratch your temples and ears.

  5. Eat A Banana – Banana is a great energy booster because its rich in potassium.

  6. Don’t oversleep – Catching up on sleep by staying in bed longer than usual can backfire and make you feel more tired. Have you ever noticed how you feel on those days you oversleep? Changing the sleep cycle by more than just a couple hours messes with you circadian rhythm and makes you feel more tired not less.

  7. Take A Quick Power Nap – Emphasis on quick. Sometimes a quick afternoon nap is all you need to get recharged. Society may make you think you are being lazy or slacking, but many of the most successful people in history (Edison, Ford, and Churchill among others) swear by a solid afternoon nap. Make it shorter than 30 minutes though as an extra long nap can make you feel groggy for the remainder of the day. A long nap might also interfere with your night time sleep schedule.

  8. Skip The Sugar – If you’re craving carbohydrates, go for whole-grain foods and if your sweet tooth is can’t be satisfied then grab a piece of fruit. These complex carbohydrates take longer to digest, so they keep your energy level steady.

  9. Go on a Quick Walk - Before you get hit by that mid afternoon slump, get up and talk a walk. Getting outside in the sun and breathing in fresh air will be sure to help you feel more energized.

  10. Always Eat Breakfast – They don’t call it the most important meal of the day for nothing. Breakfast is extremely important. If you think about it your body has not received any nourishment for 8-12 hours depending on when you ate dinner the night before. And sleeping is a lot more work than most of us are aware of. Start the day off right with a healthy breakfast. If you don’t feel like it, start with something small, and manageable and work up from there. You simply can’t reach your full energy potential without a proper breakfast.

  11. Eat Nuts – Cashews, walnuts, and almonds are full of protein and good fats. They are great for increasing your stamina as well as some of the best snack foods available to you. Make sure to have these energy snacks available at all times.

  12. Snack More – People trying to lose weight are always surprised that one of the best ways to do it is to eat more not less. Eating more frequently is a great way to get your metabolism going. The entire process of increasing your energy has to do with your metabolism. Get it cruising at full pace by eating 5-7 small meals everyday as opposed to the traditional 3. Make sure you are eating foods that have nutritonal value and won’t zap you of energy like candy bars, chips, and soda. Instead keeps nuts handy, grab a yogurt, and keep fresh fruit and vegetables fully stocked.

  13. Learn Some Stress Management Techniques – One of the quickest and sure-fire ways to feel drained of energy is to be consumed by stress. Although we can’t always avoid stress completely, we don’t have to wallow in it. Many stress management techniques exist. Here is one just for starters. Find a picture of a place that you feel safe, peaceful, restful, and beautiful. Whenever work, the kids, the husband, etc. get to you, go to your place in your mind. A picture helps but you can often do this with just your imagination. For bonus points make sure to address all the different senses available do you. Sight, smell, touch, sound, tastes. You’ll find that the stress melts away and you feel great.

  14. Drink Plenty Of H2O – Do you know what the first sign of dehydration is? Fatigue! Drinking plenty of water is essential to high energy levels. Don’t make the mistake of thinking you are getting your hydration from other drinks. There is no substitute for water.

  15. Get A Good Nights Rest – During sleep so many wonderful biochemical changes occur which help to rejuvenate our bodies. Become protective of your sleep and don’t allow distractions and whims to throw you off. Easier said than done I know, but its worth it.

  16. Take A Deep Breath – Many of us are shallow breathers. We don’t get completely fill our lungs when we breath. This results in the same types of symptoms runners experience when they run at an elevation higher than what they are use to. Their lungs can’t draw as much oxygen out of the air as they are accustomed to, so they get tired faster. Learn to draw in deep diaphragmatic breaths and then fully exhale. You’ll have more oxygen introduced to your blood stream and consequently have more energy.

  17. Make Me Time – Think to yourself about what you really like to do. Make sure that everyday you give yourself time to do that. Its about carving out a space in your life for you. Whether its a watching great movie, listening to music, going on a run, camping, reading a good book, etc. When you do things you really enjoy doing and things you love, some of the most powerful sources of personal energy are activated and released.

  18. Fix Your Posture – The natural curves of your spine help you to better deal with physical stress. When you slouch you can’t absorb and dissipate stress as evenly. This leads to pain, discomfort, and fatigue from muscles needing to work harder than they should have to. Fix your energy levels through good posture.

  19. Laugh Often – This is a fantastic form of therapy for those in an energy slump. Laughter releases important hormones that make you feel good. If you want to take this to another level take the time to learn some good funny stories and or jokes. Then go and share these with as many people as you can and watch what happens to your mood and your energy.

  20. Get Some Direct Sunlight – This is the best way to get enough Vitamin D. Vitamin D as long been underrated as to its level of importance to our overall health. Doctors are finding that the FDA’s recommended daily amount is simply not enough. Vitamin D deficiency has been proven to be to contribute to the following: osteoporosis, depression, heart disease, stroke, diabetes, thyroid, and adrenal issues. The scary part is according to one study over 80% of Americans are Vitamin D deficient. Although vitamin D supplements are wonderful, there is simply no substitute to getting out into direct sunlight.

  21. Try Aromatherapy – Our sense of smell is extremely powerful. Smelling salts have long been used to help revive the unconscious. Taxi and truck drivers use smells to stay alert during long shifts. Try some good smelling oils or candles to increase your energy and alertness.

  22. Is It Too Hot? – Everyone has experienced the feeling of being too hot and recognizes how heat can zap your strength. Are you falling asleep at work? You might be wearing too many layers. Either turn down the thermostat or get a fan for your work area.

  23. Splash Your Face With Cold Water – This is a great remedy for morning sleepiness but can be used throughout the day. The quick surge you feel as the cold water washes over your face might be just what you need to get that extra energy burst.

  24. Switch Tasks - Low energy might just be that you are in a rut. Switch your mind to a different task for a little while. Also think about the side of your brain that you are using. If you are stuck in a rut with something creative, switch to something that uses the left side of your brain for a while… and vice versa. You’ll not only notice a different form of energy but you’ll might just be surprised to notice subconsciously your brain continues to work on your previous task. And when you come back it that problem you struggled with before has been solved.

  25. Listen To Music With A Fast Temp – We are creatures of rhythm. Our entire physiology is greatly influenced by rhythms. If you are trying to relax, listen to music with a slow beat. But if you want to get pumped up, play something with a faster and more intense beat.

  26. Color Your Environment – Studies show that Red, Pink and Orange are great to boost energy levels. Take a look at your work environment or your home. If you feel depressed and tired all the time, you may want to bring in some of these splash of color.

  27. Take Herbal Supplements – Many people have already discovered the energy boosting affects of adaptogenic herbs. If you’re looking for a natural way to stay awake, try Siberian ginseng, licorice root, kelp, Rhodiola, acai, bee pollen, ginger, gutu kola, maitake and more. See the adrenal fatigue supplements guide for a list of some great products to get you started.

  28. Take Your Vitamins – Making sure your body has all the vitamins it needs to function properly is integral to staying energetic. If your diet isn’t providing what you need (which it probably isn’t), consider a multi-vitamin to supplement to start with. Then make sure you are getting enough of the energy vitamins: B vitamins (B1, B2, B3, B6, B9, B12), Iron, Magnesium, vitamin C, and vitamin D.

  29. Skip The Night Cap – You might think that alcohol makes you more sleepy, but it may actually be decreasing the quality of sleep you are getting. If you drink, do it in moderation to assure a good nights rest and alertness the morning after.

  30. Get A Massage – Massages are great to stimulate blood flow and release tension. It truly is an amazing form of therapy.

  31. Call Friends – Being social is built into our DNA. We go crazy (remember that movie Cast Away?) when we don’t have that deep sense of connection with other humans. For extra credit, call a friend and find a way to help them or contribute to their life. There is definitely a form of social energy that is all around us that we can tap into.

  32. Sneak A Quick Workout – Endorphins are some of the most powerful feel good hormones our body produces. A quick run or trip to the gym is a great way to get your heart, blood, and hormones pumping to help you feel more energy.

  33. Stand Up And Get Away From Your Desk – The idea that we can sit at a desk and work for 8 hours straight is absurd. In order to be at your peak energy levels, stop working and disconnect completely at least every 2 hours. Take a 10 to 15 minute break away from your desk and see what happens to your energy. You’ll find you have a sustainable store of energy to last you through the day.

  34. Find A Way To Serve – Forget about yourself for a little while and figure out ways that you can give to someone else’s life. Service to loved ones, or to a worthy cause also gets some of those feel good hormones flowing and… you get to help someone.

  35. Talk With Coworkers – But here’s the trick. Don’t talk about work and don’t gossip. Instead get to know others. Studies show that having friends at work boosts productivity and helps morale. Simply put, its just easier to be at work when you know and like the people there.

  36. Manage Your Emotions – Negative emotions drain energy while positive emotions build energy. Take a look at your emotional health and determine what you need to do in order to bring more positive emotions into your life. Conversely think of the the steps you need to take to decrease the negative emotions you experience everyday. Here’s a hint: the solution is that you need to change, not someone else.

  37. Try Optimism – Are you a pessimist? Are you constantly complaining about how bad things are? Studies show that pessimists have a higher chance of diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, depressive symptoms, smoke, be sedentary or overweight. Try looking at the good side of things… even the good side of bad things.

  38. Try Something Different – Change things up, drive home a different way, eat somewhere totally new and foreign to you. Spicing things up just for fun can bring the energy back to your life.

  39. Think About What You Want Not What You Don’t Want – In sports a common adage has always been “a good offense is the best defense”. This is true for life. Instead of always trying to avoid pain try going seeking pleasure. Go after exactly what it is you want. Often just the clarity alone will help you feel more energy. Play some offense with your life, think about what you want not what you don’t want.

  40. Is Your Food’s pH Off? – The pH levels of the foods most of us consume can lead to many health problems. Foods are either in the alkaline or acidic category when considering pH. The goal is since the body is slightly more alkaline than acidic, we need to eat foods that will balance our pH levels with that of our bodies natural state. Most fruits and vegetables are in the low to high alkaline category and are therefore better to consume. However, its important to make sure they are fresh fruits and vegetables instead of canned or processed in anyway. For instance, the process of canning completely changes the pH level in foods and typically makes them more acidic. Having a more balanced pH helps you body metabolize more efficiently which helps boost your energy.

  41. Play With Your Pet – If you like pets and enjoy their company, spending time with them can help you with your energy. It puts you in a good mood, helps you forget about your self, and can promote exercise and getting outdoors.

  42. Pat Yourself On The Back – Its easy to forget what we have accomplished and how far we have come. Instead of looking at how much further you need to go to get to your desired goal, think about the milestones you have hit and the progress you have made. Take a minute and congratulate yourself for your fine achievements and you are sure to feel motivation to continue on your journey.

  43. Count Your Blessings – Gratitude is a natural way to getting good positive energy to flow into you. It also helps to rid your mind of negative, heavy, and debilitating emotions and feelings that have a way of deflating you. Next time you are feeling a little tired, take time to count all the things that you are grateful for in your life.

And if all else fails... there's always Starbucks!


Two Feathers said...

One thing I noticed that's not on that list is Learn How To Say No. Sometimes there really is a limit to how many things a person can do in one day!

Two Feathers said...

Oh... and by the way. This is the longest I've waited to keep my commitment to myself. If I didn't feel that I was honor bound to actually DO it and if I wasn't reporting in here, I think today might be a day when I faltered and failed. So thank you very much for being here helping me to be accountable!!

sanehat said...

So since I have not been on the grid I have not seen the new look of the project. Not sure what I think of it. Hmmmmm. Anyway have been keeping my commitment to the project. I find it is easier in the evening than in the morning.

Karla said...

Great List ! I'll have to figure out how to print that one!

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