Today I’ve been strangely tired despite healthy eating, plenty of sleep, and regular exercise. Almost always, unusual fatigue (for me) is directly related to eating refined carbs; I can count on it. But none of those for the last week, so what? Sometimes there’s no knowing. Maybe I’m getting sick, maybe I’m stressed, maybe I’m not drinking enough water. There are so many little factors.
How to Deal with Fatigue (without the caffeine):
I might not know why I’m tired, but that doesn’t mean I’m helpless to do something about it (other than drinking caffeinated soda, which is my first instinct):
- Drink more water. Water is so important, but with all the beverages around, it’s often not the first choice. Make it the first choice. I’m trying to.
- Go for a walk. Or go for a run, do yoga, stretch, do something to get that blood flowing. Sitting for long periods of time is contrary to the human body; it was made for movement. It didn’t evolve to sit and do nothing (read Born to Run if you want to know more).
- Eat nutrient-rich food. Thanks to our refined-carb, high-fat diets, we are far from getting those basic nutrients that help us feel healthy. Eat some veggies (leafy greens are rich in iron) and fruit (bananas are rich in potassium). You want lots of fiber, probiotics, nutrients, protein, healthy fats…Go for the whole foods.
- Get good sleep. I hesitate to list this one because my sleeping habits are still not awesome, but good sleep is necessary. By this, I mean avoid getting to bed late and waking up late. Something about early to bed and early to rise is magic for the human body. Also, set aside the computer and smart phone. There’s so much to put down here. We can talk about temperature (cool is better for sleeping), pillows, mattresses, a little light vs. pitch dark…keep it simple. Early to bed, no distractions. The better sleep you get, the more energized you’ll feel throughout the day.
- Avoid “energy” drinks. Because these are lies. They energize you for a moment in order to drop you into an even bigger dearth of energy later on.
- Take a break. Do something else for a moment; give your brain a break. I know from experience that mental fatigue can often be confused with physical fatigue, but they’re not the same thing.
Take are of your body (and mind) and it’ll take care of you. If you’re tired, feed your body all those good things it’s missing: good sleep, nutritious food, pure water. It’ll make you feel better, physically and mentally. A happy body means a happier brain.