Sometimes, you just can't beat that afternoon slump. Sitting at a desk all day can leave you feeling the opposite of energetic, especially around those postlunch hours when our bodies expend more energy digesting or we crash from the effects of our morning cup of coffee. Luckily, you don't have to spend your 9-to-5 dreading the inevitable urge to take a midday nap. Here are some ways to combat that afternoon slump.
- Exercise in the morning. A good day begins with a good start. Exercising in the morning is beneficial for many reasons: you don't have to worry about scheduling a time later, and it's nice to be able to check something off your list before the day really begins. A morning sweat session is also good for keeping your energy levels up throughout the day, so if you find yourself hitting a wall in the afternoon, try moving your workout session to before work and see how you feel.
- Take an afternoon walk. If you find yourself spending more time dozing and daydreaming than working in the afternoon, take a 10-minute break to rev up your body. Just walking around the office, chatting with co-workers, or taking a break to enjoy the sunshine outside can be all you need to give your body a recharge. Wearing an activity tracker that can alert you when it's time to move can also help remind you that you've been sitting long enough to make energy levels crash.
- Eat lighter. Not only will a greasy lunch spell bad news for a diet, but choosing to go for heavy food while you're at work can also put you in that postlunch slump in no time. Instead of opting for Chinese or a burger and fries, try to eat a lighter meal that still satisfies. A healthy lunch that includes a good mix of protein, veggies, and complex carbs will keep you feeling full without giving you that lethargic feeling. Here are 25 nonboring, filling salads that will keep you excited about your midday meal.
- Drink green tea. Sometimes nothing works better to keep you awake than a dose of caffeine. But don't go overboard or you may find yourself having trouble sleeping later that night. If having a cup of coffee in the afternoon is too much, try drinking a cup of green tea instead. The caffeine levels are low but may still offer you a little pick-me-up, along with a host of other disease-fighting benefits.
- Stretch at your desk. A few stretches you can do at your desk can get your blood moving and instantly make you feel more energized. In fact, sitting is so bad for us that it can reduce our lifespan by 20 percent, so get in the habit of moving around in your chair regularly to combat the detrimental effects of sitting while awakening your senses.