The 3 P.M. slump comes for us all. If you consistently find yourself zoning out at your desk or losing focus due to a lack of energy, or if you can’t make it through your day without a quick cat-nap, you’re certainly not alone; many people experience a dip in energy due to the body’s natural circadian rhythms, too-heavy meals or from stress. But you’ve got things to do! Take on those mid-afternoon blahs and boost your energy with these fast, easy routines and rituals that can be done during your workday.
Below, discover a few simple ways to feel more energetic throughout the day. You’ve got this!
Don’t skip breakfast and crash later! Start your day with a protein-rich meal to help keep your energy levels steadier throughout the day, like nuts, cottage cheese or a few slices of turkey scrambled into some eggs. A smoothie with some protein powder works too!
The easiest way to boost your energy fast is to sneak in some exercise. Got a few minutes between meetings? Do some jumping jacks or take a quick walk around the block to get your blood pumping. If you work from home, can you do a high-intensity workout during your break to help you avoid the afternoon slump? Get moving in whatever way feels best to you — stretching, yoga, weights, a jog with your dog — and you’ll feel more alert, awake, and ready to get things done.
Eat smaller meals more frequently
Food is fuel, so keep your body fed with nutritious small meals and snacks throughout the day instead of a heavier lunch and dinner. Think sliced veggies with hummus, an apple with cheese or peanut butter, hard-boiled eggs, green smoothies, nuts, or whole-grain crackers to keep you feeling satiated. Eating something spicy or extra flavorful can also help give you a boost, but stay away from too much sugar, which only contributes to a mid-day crash.
Drink a glass of water
Even if you’ve been chugging coffee all morning, you could be dehydrated; dehydration can often show up as fatigue or dips in energy. Give your body a cool, cleansing drink of water! Staying hydrated helps keep the essential body systems working at their best. Jazz up a glass of extra cold ice water with lemon or mint for even more invigoration.
Get some sun
Head outside and (safely) soak up some sun for a few minutes. Light can help you feel more awake and alert and keep your circadian rhythms on track. If it’s dark or cloudy, consider investing in a special light therapy lamp to bring in a bit of artificial (but no less beneficial!) sunlight.
Even something as simple as getting dressed in a bright, vibrant color like orange or yellow can shift your mood and make you feel more energetic. If you don’t want to change your clothes, try surrounding yourself with colorful art or wear a citrus fragrance for an aromatic boost.
Don’t drink that extra cup of coffee
An espresso drink or a few cups of coffee are great to get you going in the morning, but resist the urge to brew up another pot in the afternoon. The caffeine could potentially keep you awake longer, leading to another day of yawning and low energy levels tomorrow.