By: Sawyer Cecena
If you’re always guilty of reaching for the nearest pot of coffee for a mid-day energy boost, you’re not alone. A research study conducted by the National Coffee Association (yes, that’s a real thing!) recently found that over half of Americans rely on that cup of Joe to get them through the day. It may seem like just another part of your daily routine, but did you know that too much caffeine consumption can actually make you more tired? Or cause some unfortunate side effects like tremors, an increased heartbeat, and bowel trouble? Cutting caffeine is no easy feat, but here are five caffeine-free ways to increase your energy that can help you get started.
You Are What You Eat
Put down the potato chips and back away – slowly! While we all deserve a little indulgence now and again, chowing down on too many greasy, sugary, or otherwise unhealthy foods can really drain our energy. If you’re feeling super sluggish, try incorporating more super foods like carrots, chia seeds, blueberries, and greens into your diet.
Switch Up Your Sleeping Schedule
This one may seem like a no-brainer, but if you’re not getting enough sleep then you’re definitely going to be tired throughout the day. Ideally, we should all aim for six to eight hours of sleep each night. If that’s not doable, check out this article I wrote last year about the benefits of regular naps. You can thank me later!
There are several health benefits to essential oils, one of which being that many can increase our energy and focus. Essential oils can be used in a few different ways, but for maximum results most experts recommend using them topically or as an inhalant. Some scents to try when you’re feeling fatigued are lemon, orange, cinnamon, and peppermint. Avoid scents like lavender, vanilla, jasmine, and sandalwood which tend to have the opposite effect.
Work It Out
When you’re dragging yourself out of bed in the morning, the last thing on your mind is getting a workout. However, many studies show that getting a little exercise in in the morning can be the perfect pick-me-up. If you’re already an exercise pro, try moving your usual routine to an earlier time in the day. If you’re a total newbie (like me!), or if the thought of working out in the morning sounds terrifying (also me!), a walk around the block is a great place to start.
Of course, this is way easier said than done. But, the truth is that holding onto a lot of stress can really take a toll on our bodies and has been closely linked to tiredness. If stress could be to blame for your lack of energy, try to limit your stressful activities for a while and balance out life’s necessary stressors with some self-care or meditation. If that doesn’t seem to work, you may also want to consider talking to a mental health professional about your anxieties.