Williams explains that adenosine is a neurotransmitter whose levels slowly rise throughout the day and then start to fall in the evening to help you become ready for bed. She says that adenosine does so by binding to receptors in the brain that slow its activity and cause sleepiness, but caffeine can also bind to these receptors and produce the opposite effect, triggering alertness. This is why your afternoon latte habit may be disrupting your sleep and perpetuating a vicious cycle of low energy levels and unstable moods.
Thankfully, Williams has five simple tips for boosting your energy and mood naturally to help you regain the pep in your step without risking another sleepless or restless night.
How to boost your energy levels without consuming caffeine
1. Step up your hydration game
Williams says that hydrating is one of the quickest ways to improve your mood, beat that pesky afternoon slump, and help you regain focus. While she says drinking water is the most important beverage for achieving proper hydration levels, Williams encourages leveling up your water with electrolytes.
"Electrolytes help create balance in the body and help us properly absorb all the water we are drinking," Williams says. She likes using Ultima’s electrolyte powders because they don’t add extra sugar, which can cause blood sugar spikes and further negatively impact your energy levels or mood.
2. Get outside—even for just 10 minutes
Whether you’re an early bird who has an extra few minutes in the morning or you get antsy after lunch, finding a few minutes to get some sunlight is essential for improving your mood and energy. Williams says even just 10 minutes of walking or sitting outside will help support a healthy sleep cycle, and getting out in some sort of green space will be even better for your mental health. Adding this into your daily routine can be as simple as bringing your journaling practice outside, taking the dog for a quick lap around the block, or just curling up on the porch with a cup of tea to start reaping the feel-good benefits.
Williams says even just 10 minutes of walking or sitting outside will help support a healthy sleep cycle, and getting out in some sort of green space will be even better for your mental health. Adding this into your daily routine can be as simple as bringing your journaling practice outside, taking the dog for a quick lap around the block, or just curling up on the porch with a cup of tea.
3. Find a type of exercise you enjoy
“Another thing that might seem like it would have the opposite effect but really works is incorporating some type of movement into the day even when you’re drained in the afternoon,” says Williams.
You can knock out two of these tips by going outdoors for a walk, seeking out a subscription-based workout program, or checking out a local fitness studio that offers a style of movement you actually enjoy. Just make sure you hydrate afterwards!
“Simply moving for 10 minutes and having a change of scenery when you are looking for a mental and physical boost can be tough to make yourself do, but the effects are so worth it,” says Williams.
4. Reach for healthy snacks
Williams says that what you eat becomes even more important when you’re sleep-deprived or having a tough day mentally. “Stick to proteins, produce, healthy fats, and complex—versus refined—carbs,” Williams says.
Some of Williams’s favorite healthy snacks that will keep your blood sugar stable and belly satisfied are: nuts, cheese, hard-boiled eggs, apples or pears with nut butter, and greek yogurt with berries. All of these snacks are portable and can be stored in your purse, desk, or gym bag for emergencies.
5. Create and stick to a healthy morning routine
Williams says that sticking to your normal daily routine is essential when you’re running low on sleep, as hard as it may be. "For instance, if you normally have a cup of coffee in the morning, you can absolutely still enjoy it, but don’t up your caffeine intake any more than usual to chase an energy boost."
Williams also encourages sticking to your usual workout schedule, even if you’re opting for a 20-minute online pilates class that day instead of your usual scheduled HIIT class, and to support your body with nutrient-dense meals and snacks to regain a better mood naturally.
If you don’t already have a morning routine or weekly movement goals, it may be helpful to create some loose structure to get your mind and body into healthy rhythms. It can be as simple as starting the day with a 10-minute morning walk instead of frantically getting ready and out the door, establishing a daily snack time to ensure you don’t go too long between meals, and adding a few hours of movement into your weekly calendar to boost your strength, mood, and energy.
Loading More Posts...