We’ve all been there. The morning was super productive, you crossed a few things off the to-do list, grabbed a power lunch and then 2 o’clock rolled around and you were ready to curl up under your desk for a little cat nap. What is it about those afternoon hours that leave us yearning for a little shut eye?
Well, the answer is simple really. There are three main causes that lead to afternoon exhaustion:
Diet – reaching for caffeine and sugar can actually backfire, leaving you more tired, because of the fluctuation on your blood sugar levels. Try a healthy snack instead. We have some great examples below.
Sleep – The simple answer, right? A majority of us don’t get enough sleep and it affects the way we feel the next day. Avoid caffeine and alcohol before bedtime, and put the electronics down. Research shows that staring at your phone, tablet, or television before bed can actually prevent you from getting a good night’s rest.
Exercise – Regular, vigorous exercise is great therapy for fatigue, but try to do it earlier in the day, not right before bed.
If you’re still ready to pull the shades and grab a pillow in the afternoon, here are some quick tips to help you recharge and get on with your day.
You should try to get up and walk around once an hour anyhow, but when fatigue sets in try a few quick power exercises. Run up and down the stairs a few times, get up and talk to a co-worker instead of emailing, stand whenever you can (during meetings, when on the phone, etc). You can also check out our video tips on office stretches to reduce fatigue and back pain here.
To avoid eye strain its always best to keep your computer monitor at least an arm’s length away from you.
Try Green Tea
Green tea has less caffeine than a cup of coffee, and it can provide that afternoon pick-me-up without keeping you up all night. And, it has great nutritional benefits.
Choose snacks that are full of nutrients so you can keep your metabolism going and increase energy levels. Great choices are bananas & apples, veggies & hummus, almonds & walnuts, yogurt with fresh fruit & granola, kale chips (get the recipe here), and lots of water.
Try a combination of these activities – they’ll help get you through the afternoon feeling refreshed and ready to tackle the rest of your day!