Targeted, weekly challenges that help bolster you onward into health changes that hold the most power for you.
Need more energy? Give me just 7 days.
As a health professional, this is a question I get on an almost daily basis - how can I have more energy? Most people hope (and understandably so) that there is a vitamin or herbal supplement or pill that can help boost their energy levels during the daytime. Many people feel there is just 'something missing' from their diet that will increase their energy levels.
For starters, taking a good multivitamin (here's my fav) can tick all the boxes for good nutrient intakes if your diet is lacking. For those of you that already take one - try to take it around midday, with a little food in your stomach. An influx of energy-producing B-vitamins can help stave off afternoon energy slumps. This timing is important for digestion as well because you will have the best nutrient absorption at around 2-3 pm in the afternoon when most people's cortisol levels drop.
Apple cider vinegar is another popular supplement touted to be an "energy producer" and if this works for you - go for it! For most people, taking apple cider vinegar does not have a lasting effect on sustained energy levels. The benefits wane after a period of time. However, if you don't have any stomach problems or sensitivities, have 1-2 oz of apple cider vinegar diluted with water. To protect the enamel on your teeth - maybe sip diluted apple cider vinegar through a straw. Try it every day for 7 days. See if you notice a difference!
But I'm here today to tell you - you don't need a multivitamin or apple cider vinegar to help boost your energy levels. You already have everything you need to create more energy in your body. You don't necessarily have to add anything to your diet.
The simple answer: You can create energy in your body. You can begin the process of generating energy within your body on your own. Here's how:
Whenever you move a muscle, get your heart beating a little faster, or begin breathing a bit more quickly, your body responds in the most amazing way. It will begin to create additional mitochondria--the powerhouse energy producers in your body. Mitochondria are responsible for making readily available ATP (adenosine triphosphate), which is the energy currency inside all of your cells. The more energy you use up with physical activity, the more your body will respond by producing more mitochondria. More mitochondria means more energy! All day, every day!
In short, moving, breathing, and getting your heart rate up, can all help you generate more energy. Activities such as walking, stretching, and gentle movement start the process. If you are feeling tired, like too tired to go to the gym or workout - then that is most likely EXACTLY what you need to do. If you are active 2-3 times each week, your body will create extra mitochondria in response that will help you maintain good energy levels throughout the day.
If you are not active, or if you decrease your activity, your body is wired to be efficient and won't keep mitochondria around that are not being utilized. Your cells will begin recycle and resorb those extra mitochondria, making your total energy availability drop.
You can also think energetic thoughts. To combat feelings of fatigue and low-energy, take a moment to deepen your awareness and begin to think of how it feels to have energy. Tell yourself, "I feel good energy levels" even when you don't. Believe that you have energy in spite of feeling tired. See how changing what you think changes your level of energy. For those of you who have read "The Secret" I'm just channeling Rhonda Byrne here - because this can really work wonders on your energy level!
If you truly want more energy, make an effort to move your body for just 7 days. Do it EVERY day. Even if it is only a walk, chair exercises and stretching. Make a snow angel in your bed! Move your body! Don't miss a day - even if you only do it for a couple of minutes! At the end of your 7th day, do a little self-inspection and ask the question, "Am I feeling more energetic?"
My bets are - your answer will be a resounding yes! Take this weekly change series challenge and you'll never see low energy levels the same way again.
Here's to your health and good energy!