It’s no secret I’m a coffee girl at heart. If caffeine didn’t keep me up all night I would be drinking a lot more coffee throughout the day. For now my cutoff is somewhere around noon if I want to go to sleep at a decent hour. Through two pregnancies and nursing two babies I’ve had to find alternative methods to maintain energy all day thanks a limited daily caffeine intake.
Little Man reacted to caffeine no matter how little I had, so I went caffeine free for about 10 months while nursing. Luckily Baby B has handled it a little better so two cups a day seems to fit within our reasonable limit. Long nights still require extra energy to get through the work day so I’ve had to find alternative methods to maintaining my energy.
One. Drink Water
It sounds silly and to be honest I didn’t buy it until Little Man was about one year old. Water has nothing in it that would give you energy you would think. Yet just being properly hydrated makes such a difference in having the ability to maintain energy throughout the day.
A few years ago my husband and I did a 100 ounces of water a day challenge. Both of us often struggled to get enough water in during the day and this challenge was an eyeopener to me. The results amazed me and I have tried to stick with it since then. Not every day is perfect, but I can feel my energy levels dipping down on the days I am low on my water intake.
My Tip: Pick up a cute water bottle and figure out how many times you should fill it up a day to reach your ideal water intake.
There is no doubt that I am able to maintain energy a lot longer on the days I run first thing in the morning. The adrenaline kick from a good run is enough to get me almost through an entire day. Yes, physically your muscles can be tired. I’ve often found that mixing exercise with the right amount of water offsets that tiredness.
If you happened to be around me on a day when Baby B was up all night and I missed my morning run…you can expect a whole new level of grumpy to occur.
My Tip: Instead of hitting snooze, hit the treadmill 3 days a week for a morning walk or jog.
Three. Keep Moving
Even with a 3-5 mile run in the morning that gets me close to my 10k steps for the day, I still struggle the rest of the day. To be fair, that comes with the territory of a desk job. I wouldn’t change my job for anything, but I’ve started to force myself to move more at certain points throughout the day.
It’s easy to sit at your desk to eat lunch. I found myself moving even less and burning out even faster in the afternoon. With a quick walk outside at lunch to a coffee shop each day I get a chance to clear my head and get my body moving again. Believe it or not, that makes a huge difference in my afternoon energy.
My Tip: Fitbit suggests you log at least 250 steps per hour. Find a way to make that happen. Take a quick walk at lunch, fill your water bottle, talk to a co-worker instead of sending an email… etc.
Four. Watch What You Eat
Protein is for bodybuilders right? Just high level athletes? Wrong. I’ve always liked a good protein shake but when I was pregnant with Baby B they became a necessary part of my day. I struggled a lot last Summer with getting dizzy and tested negative for anemia. We tried many different things to figure out a solution and one was reevaluating how much protein I was eating.
I was incredibly low on my protein intake.
Not only did I need to find a way to stomach meat, but I started adding protein shakes into my daily routine as well. Sometimes I was drinking two a day just to reach the 75 gram minimum the doctor recommended. Now my day isn’t complete without a protein shake and a protein bar, just to make sure I’m getting enough to maintain energy.
No time for a morning smoothie or protein shake? You can always grab something quick like one of these gluten free, organic, vegan, and soy free protein bars. They are easy to throw in your lunch or grab on the way out the door in the morning.
My Tip: Do not miss out on your daily protein! Find a way to incorporate more into your daily meals or add on a protein bar or protein shake!
Five. Take Your Vitamins
There are hundreds of options out there for vitamins. I’ll admit, I’m not the greatest at remembering to take them each night. Over the last few years I’ve started getting better at taking them. Our insurance requires us to do blood work every year and I’m able to use that to talk to my doctor bout what might be missing. She helped me figure out the best vitamin to take when I was pregnant with Baby B and I’ve been able to keep taking it through nursing.
My Tip: Everyone is different, figure out what vitamins you need and get some ordered!
What tips do you have to maintain energy throughout the day?