Well, the school year is finally going now. I’m sort-of adjusting to the new schedule. One important issue is energy. With all the nighttime prepping for H’s daycare time and my work time, I’m usually getting to bed later than I would like. I decided to really sit down and think about ways to keep my energy levels high. I figure the more energy I have the more work I can get done! This means more time to spend at home with the sweet baby.
1) Packing plenty of food for the day – I always make sure to take enough snacks, lunch, and water bottles for a full day of work. Starting off without the fuel I’ll need always leads to hunger, poor eating choices, and low energy.
2) Black Coffee! – This is so important on those early morning. I set my coffee pot the night before, so I’m ready to go in the morning. I like to add either cinnamon or a shake of pumpkin pie spice mix and about 3-4 tablespoons of skim milk (heated in the microwave).
3) Snacks! – I eat breakfast around 6 AM, and my next snack is 9-9:30. I usually eat this while walking around the classroom, so it needs to be something easy (ex. raisins, almonds, banana, etc.). Lunch is at 11:20. Last snack at work is usually about 2 PM. This might me something a little more substantial especially on work-out days (ex. greek yogurt with fruit, low sugar granola bar, frosted mini wheats for a kick of sweetness, homemade trail mix).
4) H2O – This is something I have a hard time with, but I know it is super important. I fill up two water bottles for each work day about 25 to 20 fluid ounces in each. My goal is to finish by the time I get home. I tend to drink more from lunch on, but I know it’s best to be sipping all day.
5) Recharging During the Day – Take a few minutes to relax and focus your mind on something besides work. This could be as simple as stopping to talk for five minutes with a friendly coworker or setting a timer on your phone to read a magazine article or chapter of a book for 5 to 10 minutes. I know some people even work their devotional time into the lunch hour (if you’re lucky enough to have that much time!).
6) Rising and Resting at the Same Time – I get up pretty early. 4:45 AM to be extremely, brutally exact. However, this really helps me get everything accomplished in the morning that I need to. My body has adjusted to this time, and I don’t wake up feeling as groggy as I did at first. I think it really helps to keep your internal clock on a schedule. No need to rise as ridiculously early as me, just keep your body on a routine even if that is rising much later. You just get to stay up later! 🙂
7) Sunshine! – This is big. I always feel better if I can catch a little sun during the middle part of the day or early afternoon. Fortunately, I do get to go outside with students for recess sometimes. I can really tell that it makes a difference in my afternoon energy levels.
8) Peppermint – Gum, tea, Burt’s Bees, lotion – Anything with peppermint oil works wonders for those moments when you want to hide under your desk and nap. I love the gum personally.
9) Deep Breaths and Stretch – A few deep, intentional breaths and about 2 minutes of light stretching can really get the blood flowing through that sleepy body.
10) Think of Your Family – This always does the trick for me! When I’m tired and want to just take a break for longer than I should, I think of my little family and how I can’t wait to see them. Then, I think “if I finish this or that task up, I can move on to the next thing. I’ll be home in no time!”
What’s your trick for keeping up your energy at home and/or at work?