When your energy drops through the floor, you have two options: do something to get it back or choose a stimulant that will bring it back for you. Either way, a quick fix is often what we need because most of us just don’t have time to wait around and feel fatigued – especially if we’re in the middle of a workout!
A lot of people I know turn to energy drinks. Those just aren’t for me. For one thing, they are filled with either sugar or artificial sweeteners or both. I don’t need any more of that nonsense in my diet than I’m already getting. It’ll only hold me back in the long run. Plus, energy drinks usually use guarana as their stimulant. That’s a pretty powerful stimulant and while lots of people seem to be able to tolerate it without any problems, I end up with the jitters.
I can’t stand feeling jittery. It’s not comfortable to have trembling hands (and it’s embarrassing at times, too), but it can also make me feel nervous or anxious. The whole point to getting more energy is for me to be able to get more done or perform better during my training. It’s not to make me shaky and anxious!
So here are some great ways to get energy back without having to resort to energy drinks:
• Chew gum – I never recommend chewing gum during a workout. You’re likely to end up choking on the stuff if you do. That said, if you chew gum for about 15 minutes before you start your workout, it will actually give your body a bit of an energy boost. Seriously! There was a study in 2012 that showed that chewing gum boosts your heart rate, which sends more blood to your brain, which makes you feel more alert. Just be sure to choose the minty stuff for the best effect. Mint has a refreshing effect on us. It’s cooling, sort-of like splashing your face with water.
• Eat the right carbs – Skip the white flour based foods like white bread, pasta, muffins, etc, and go for a super-awesome whole grain. They give you fast but lasting energy. The trick is to select good ones and not to overdo it. If you eat huge portions, it stimulates serotonin in your brain and that will only make you want to nap. Eat the right portion size and you’re golden.
• Get into natural light – Whether that’s from the sun or from a full-spectrum bright light box, lots of full spectrum light stimulates your brain – a lot. It can help you to stop slumping in the afternoon and can even help keep the blues away in the winter.
• Try a clinically researched pill – Go for one like TRIMTHIN X700 that contains caffeine, but in the right amount for energy without overdoing it. Pay careful attention to directions and if they recommend starting at a half dose for the first few days, do that and ease into higher doses. That keeps my jitters from happening while still giving me that added oomph for my training.