Tired After Work? Stay Energized Throughout the Day with These Tips

Jake Newby

| 3 min read

After a long day at work or school, you probably won’t find that second wind on your couch.
There’s nothing wrong with unwinding after a long day at work, but sometimes we’d like to come home and be as productive at night as we were during the workday.
It can feel like a fight to find the energy needed to spend more quality time with family, tackle side projects, or crank out better workouts at the gym. You can chug down an extra-large cup of coffee in the late afternoon for a quick fix, but that’s not the healthiest option. Especially if you’d like to sleep well that night.
Often, getting the most out of your evening hours can come from the nourishment you provide your body throughout the day, as well as the previous night. Check out these caffeine-free tips to help you stay energized throughout the day.

Charge up the night before with a good night’s sleep

Most people know what eight hours of sleep per night can do for their wellbeing, but they still don’t routinely attain it. Almost half of all Americans say they feel sleepy during the day between three and seven days per week, according to the Sleep Foundation. Prioritize sleep and rest the night before and you probably won’t feel so inclined to crash out on the couch after work and scroll the evening away on your phone.
Quick-hit tips for better sleep:
  • Go to bed and get up at the same time every day.
  • Make sure your bed and bedroom are comfortable; not too hot, not too cold, not too noisy.
  • Unplug devices at least an hour before bedtime.

Eat well and eat often during the day to fight fatigue

Whole-grain breakfasts packed with healthy proteins –such as bran flakes and steel-cut oatmeal – can be great early-morning energy boosters. Slow-release carbs give gradual energy to the body.
Eating nutrient-dense lunches and dinners featuring healthy fats, quality protein, and fresh fruits and vegetables should satiate and energize the body. At the same time, you should avoid eating foods chockful of processed and refined sugars, high-fructose corn syrup and trans and hydrogenated fats.
Don’t overdo it with that lunch portion, though. Eating one decent-sized meal and then snacking on protein and fiber-packed snacks (like low-sodium almonds and carrot sticks) every few hours can offer these boosts, according to Harvard Health:
  • Provides increased energy if several hours pass between meals and blood glucose levels drop.
  • Helps curb your appetite to prevent overeating at the next meal.
  • Provides extra nutrients when choosing certain snacks like fresh fruit or nuts.
Don’t forget to drink plenty of water. Investing in an environmentally friendly stainless steel water bottle can help promote steady water intake while at work.

Recharge the body and mind

If you take the measures listed above and still find yourself yawning every few minutes after work, do some troubleshooting. Take the time to jot down a list of energy-boosting sources and start applying them to your post-work schedule to see what works best for you. Options can include:
  • Connecting with a loved one
  • Eating a light snack
  • Listening to music
  • Meditating
  • Taking a brisk walk 

Disconnect from work

Additionally, disconnecting from work can give you the mental boost needed to get the most out of your evening hours. If you are the type to check your work email after hours or bring assignments home, stress and fatigue can follow you there. Try setting a firm work cutoff time and instead devote that energy to the things in life that make you the happiest.
Photo credit: Getty Images

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