Beat the Mid-Day Slump

3 tips on maintaining your energy throughout the workday, keeping you focused and productive.

How many of you have felt great and ready to tackle the day when you wake up in the morning? You are probably on a roll, answering emails, generating thoughtful ideas, and communicating your team until… that mid-day slump hits.

Usually it’s after lunch or around 2–3pm when your cortisol is decreasing due to stress and the flow of the day. You are fighting the urge to take a nap and want to chug a whole glass of cold brew so the caffeine can keep you awake.

If you think this is normal, it’s not. You don’t have to feel this crash of energy. You shouldn’t have to depend on a nap or more caffeine. Here are 3 things I do to ensure I’m feeling energized and focused throughout the entire work day:

Workout in the afternoon.

Many people workout right when they wake up or at night before bed. Truth is, this just isn’t the best way to utilize your energy. In the morning you are already well-rested and your cortisol is high, so you should focus on activities that require a lot of thinking or focus.

At night you are trying to wind down your body and prepare it for rest. Working out will simply SPIKE your cortisol, sending your body into overdrive when it is really time to rest.

During your lunch break is the perfect time to workout because it is when you are starting to slow down. Exercising during this team will increase cortisol levels, keeping you alert and focused as you continue your work day.

Avoid carbs at lunch.

Carbs often contribute to this sluggish, tired feeling in the middle of the day. Most of us eat them at lunch every day so we don’t realize the effect they have. They are known to make tryptophan more readily available in the brain, causing drowsiness. Carbs also cause an immediate insulin spike and then a quick crash, contributing to this awful feeling.

Aim to eat a high protein meal for lunch. I like to do a salad with fish and veggies or a smoothie with protein powder. This ensures I won’t experience a carb crash that drains my energy.

Drink green tea or matcha.

Unlike coffee matcha tea provides a steady increase in alertness and focus without the crash that coffee can cause. Matcha not only contains caffeine but also an important compound called L-Theanine which acts as a calming agent.

If you are hyper-sensitive to caffeine, matcha is the way to go. Just make sure you are buying ceremonial-grade matcha that has been tested for heavy metals. I personally enjoy this brand. The quality is very important if you want to experience all of its great benefits.

Now you have all the natural tools in your tool belt for beating that awful tiredness that hits in the middle of the workday. Watch your productivity and focus sky rocket. It’s amazing how much more good you can do when you feel good.

Sources:

Read more about low cortisol and adrenal fatigue here.

Read more about exercise and cortisol levels here.

Read more on carbs, proteins, and performance here.

Read more about matcha and its benefits on stress here.

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