How To Energize Your Day (Without The Coffee!)

Ever wish you could just wave a magic wand and feel well-rested and alert?

For many people–and maybe you’re one of them–an extra shot of espresso seems like a quick fix. When you just can’t leave work any earlier, or family responsibilities mean less sleep than your body would like, it can be a real challenge. I’ve got news for you. When your body needs eight–even nine–hours of sleep, and your schedule isn’t giving you more than five, you bet you’re going to feel it. It’s not a surprise that the best course of action is to get enough sleep. But on those days when that just isn’t an option, there are some things you can do to get the most mileage out of your nearly-empty energy gas tank:

*Drink water, lots of it. Water clears your head and helps you stay focused.

*Steer clear of sugar, refined carbohydrates and any white carbohydrates. On days when you’re tired, your body is looking for extra energy from any source possible. It knows that sugar has worked in the past for a quick boost. Though your sugar cravings may skyrocket on days that you are sleepy, fight them. Yes, you will get a high from sugar but the low that follows may be enough to put you over the edge.

*Eat high quality proteins like chicken and fish combined with vegetables to keep blood sugar levels stable and avoid the lows that may cause you to close your eyes at an inopportune moment.

*Eat your greens! The full complement of vitamins, minerals and fiber can really help cleanse and revitalize your body when it needs it most. Greens also help elevate your mood, great for those days that are perpetually dragging.

*Get moving. What?! You’re probably saying, I’m too tired to exercise! But a short walk can really help to stave off sleepiness, especially when you combine it with getting a dose of fresh air. Exercise helps balance blood sugar levels keeping them stable.

*Go for a green powder boost – chlorella, spirulina, blue-green algae, wheat or barley grass powders are found separate or in mixes in the health food store. The chlorophyll, vitamins and minerals in these powders revitalizes, renews and cleanses the body, allowing for a little energy lift.

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Ideal Balance was founded in 2006 to help busy professionals find simple ways to eat healthy, exercise consistently, and find peace and balance in their lives. She conducts nutrition and health coaching, live workshops and various events in New York City and San Francisco. Please go to to get your free “Managing Overwhelm” kit and weekly tips.

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