Do you find yourself wishing that you still had as much energy as you did 10, 20 or 30 years ago? When you feel energised, you can achieve so much more with your day and feel younger and more vibrant.
These are my 7 top tips for recapturing that lost energy:
1. Energise your body and brain with nutritious foods.
This is my most important point. Feeling fatigued can mean that you are not meeting the specific nutrition requirements for energy production.
Try putting aside breakfast cereal and start your day with a balanced protein breakfast. Breakfast ideas include scrambled eggs with mushrooms and avocado; chia seed pudding with fruit salad and yoghurt; fresh sardines on toast. If you start the day with a healthy breakfast, you should notice the difference in your energy levels by mid morning.
Other nutritious foods that should be in your daily diet include fruits and vegetables, nuts and seeds, fish, meat and a variety of healthy fats and complex carbohydrates. All these foods supply the nutrients needed for energy!
2. Cut back on caffeine, alcohol and sugar.
While these substances may help you to feel energetic temporarily, in the long run they deplete your energy, contribute to weight gain and your body has to work harder to detoxify and eliminate them from your system.
If you want to improve your energy levels, I recommend that you reduce your coffee intake to one cup per day (in the morning), have 3 alcohol free days every week and eliminate foods with refined sugar. Foods to avoid if you want to feel energetic all day are soft drinks; energy drinks; juices; and all sweets, cakes, biscuits and snacks with added sugar. The best sweet snack is fruit!
3. Stay hydrated
Being dehydrated can leave you feeling tired and flat and can also contribute to headaches. Drinking 6 to 8 glasses of water every day is recommended to stay properly hydrated. Air-conditioning, caffeine, alcohol and exercise can increase your need for fluids.
I recommend starting each morning with a glass or two of water and add a squeeze of lemon juice if you like it.
If you feel tired and lacking in energy in the afternoon, try drinking a glass of water (or 2) before you have a snack or a caffeinated drink, it might be all you need to energise you. Herbal tea is a refreshing alternative for people who get tired of drinking water.
4. Get some sleep!
A restorative sleep will do wonders for your energy levels, so switch off the computer or TV an hour before bed time and start to wind down with a bath, herbal tea, a good book or whatever sends a message to your body that it's time to relax and prepare for sleep.
Try to be consistent with your bedtime, if possible around 10 to 10:30pm, which will help your body clock to establish a natural routine for you. If you find that your mind is too busy to shut down, try writing down what's on your mind in a journal before bed, or experiment with some relaxation techniques or meditation. Aim for 7 to 8 sleep every night.
5. Get out and exercise!
Exercise has so many long term health benefits and one of the immediate benefits is a feeling of being energised. It is important for your health and energy levels to exercise every day but it doesn't need to be a vigorous boot camp.
A 30 minute walk every morning is an excellent way to invigorate your morning, especially if you walk by the water or in a park. If you find walking each day a little boring, why not try listening to music or a podcast while you walk, or take your dog out for a run.
Most of us have experienced the feeling of being unfit and drained of energy. The way to re-energise is to get up and get active, even if you don't feel like it.
If you feel tired in the afternoon, the simple act of getting up from your desk and stretching can be instantly energising. Be aware of how you're sitting in your chair, an upright posture will take the pressure off your shoulders and spine and improve your energy.
6. Feel good techniques
Set yourself some great new goals or change up your routine. We all feel more energised when we have a purpose, a goal or new hobby, so find something new to inspire you!
Plan a trip, try a new sport, learn a language or a musical instrument or volunteer with an organisation that you admire or support. You don't have to find something new to do, is there a project that you have been wanting to finish or a bunch of movies on your list to watch? The important thing is to find something that you really enjoy and do it!
7. Book a consultation with a naturopath
If you have tried all these techniques and you still feel like you are lacking in energy, then why not book in to see a naturopath? Naturopaths can help you to find the right foods for your body and ensure that you are properly digesting and absorbing all the nutrients in your food.
Naturopaths can also help you to improve your sleep, mood and stress levels and detox your system when you have been overdoing the sugar, alcohol and caffeine.
To find out more about what a naturopath can offer, click here.
Remember that we all have peaks and troughs in our energy levels and these are natural. Our energy levels can vary during the day and during the seasons. If you feel that your energy levels are always low, then it might be time to take some action to improve how you feel.