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8 Ways to Stay Awake After Lunch

8 Ways to Stay Awake After Lunch

The lunch-time hour is a glorious time of the day that I hope includes delicious food that nourishes your body and a much-needed break from the daily grind. If you’re like most people, the second half of the day seems to become so slow that time grinds to a halt. As soon as you clock back in after your lunch hour, you might find yourself in a coma-like state where keeping your eyes open requires intensely focused effort. Today I’d like to share 8 ways to stay awake after lunch to give you more pep in your step. Let’s do it!

Take a quick walk outside

Your body has a natural need for napping in the afternoon, so take a quick walk before you clock back in. You will burn some of those calories you just ate, loosen up your body—before chaining it back to your desk—and get some sunshine, which will give your body some much-needed Vitamin D. The last item on that list has the following benefits:

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  • Increases energy, immunity, mood, and alertness
  • Reduces stress, tension, body-aches, and pain
  • Provides healthier and more vibrant skin

Do some stretches at your desk

Sitting hunched over at your desk could produce chronic back pain and poor posture, and who wants that? Nobody, anywhere, ever, so do some quick light stretches to wake your body up and stretch out your kinks. Get up and do two or three simple stretches per hour to have a swagger that expresses confidence and stay awake after lunch.

Nourish your body with quality nutrition

If your lunch includes sugar-laden soda and processed carbs from a fast food restaurant down the block, don’t be surprised when your energy crashes within an hour. Instead, eat a meal that includes healthy fats and protein. Some positive options include things like:

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  • Grilled chicken or steak salad
  • Almonds, walnuts, and other tree nuts
  • Bananas, apples, oranges, berries, or any other delicious fruit your heart desires

You might want to consider preparing a healthy lunch the night before so it’s ready to go, and you can just pick it up and run out the door in the morning.

Splash some cold water on your face

Feeling super groggy? Excuse yourself to the restroom and jolt yourself awake with a splash of cold water to snap back into it.

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Chew gum

Bored out of your mind and unable to focus? Keep some gum at your desk and pop in a piece when times get tough. This will keep you alert by stimulating your facial muscles and increasing the blood flow to your head.

Laugh to your heart’s content

Before you clock back in, watch a funny video on YouTube or read your favorite comic strip and have a hearty laugh. This will boost your mood and help you stay wake. For bonus points, give one of your co-workers the opportunity to show you how hysterical they are by asking them to tell you one of their favorite jokes.

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Give your eyes a break

Staring relentlessly at a computer screen will strain your eyes and cause tiredness and fatigue. Every few minutes, focus your attention elsewhere for a brief moment. You could make this time more productive by grabbing a note-pad and making a quick list of the important tasks you need to accomplish before the day is over.

Be aware of the source of your ails

The other seven tips will give you a quick fix that will help you stay awake after lunch, but if you want to have a consistent energy boost to carry you through your days, you need to figure out why you are so tired in the first place. Are you getting 6-8 hours of sleep every night? Are you nourishing your body with healthy food that will provide you with the quality nutrition you deserve? Lifestyle changes might not be sexy, but they are your best bet if you want to feel more energetic and alert every single day. If you don’t get enough sleep, you might want to check out these eight ways to improve your sleep.

How do you stay awake after lunch?

If you have any tips to add to this list, please tell us all about it in the comments!

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Daniel Wallen

Daniel is a writer who focuses on blogging about happiness and motivation at Lifehack.

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Last Updated on September 18, 2020

7 Simple Rules to Live by to Get in Shape in Two Weeks

7 Simple Rules to Live by to Get in Shape in Two Weeks

Learning how to get in shape and set goals is important if you’re looking to live a healthier lifestyle and get closer to your goal weight. While this does require changes to your daily routine, you’ll find that you are able to look and feel better in only two weeks.

Over the years, I’ve learned a lot about what it takes to get in shape. Although anyone can cover the basics (eat right and exercise), there are some things that I could only learn through trial and error. Let’s cover some of the most important points for how to get in shape in two weeks.

1. Exercise Daily

It is far easier to make exercise a habit if it is a daily one. If you aren’t exercising at all, I recommend starting by exercising a half hour every day. When you only exercise a couple times per week, it is much easier to turn one day off into three days off, a week off, or a month off.

If you are already used to exercising, switching to three or four times a week to fit your schedule may be preferable, but it is a lot harder to maintain a workout program you don’t do every day.

Be careful to not repeat the same exercise routine each day. If you do an intense ab workout one day, try switching it up to general cardio the next. You can also squeeze in a day of light walking to break up the intensity.

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If you’re a morning person, check out these morning exercises that will start your day off right.

2. Duration Doesn’t Substitute for Intensity

Once you get into the habit of regular exercise, where do you go if you still aren’t reaching your goals? Most people will solve the problem by exercising for longer periods of time, turning forty-minute workouts into two hour stretches. Not only does this drain your time, but it doesn’t work particularly well.

One study shows that “exercising for a whole hour instead of a half does not provide any additional loss in either body weight or fat”[1].

This is great news for both your schedule and your levels of motivation. You’ll likely find it much easier to exercise for 30 minutes a day instead of an hour. In those 30 minutes, do your best to up the intensity to your appropriate edge to get the most out of the time.

3. Acknowledge Your Limits

Many people get frustrated when they plateau in their weight loss or muscle gaining goals as they’re learning how to get in shape. Everyone has an equilibrium and genetic set point where their body wants to remain. This doesn’t mean that you can’t achieve your fitness goals, but don’t be too hard on yourself if you are struggling to lose weight or put on muscle.

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Acknowledging a set point doesn’t mean giving up, but it does mean realizing the obstacles you face.

Expect to hit a plateau in your own fitness results[2]. When you expect a plateau, you can manage around it so you can continue your progress at a more realistic rate. When expectations meet reality, you can avoid dietary crashes.

4. Eat Healthy, Not Just Food That Looks Healthy

Know what you eat. Don’t fuss over minutia like whether you’re getting enough Omega 3’s or tryptophan, but be aware of the big things. Look at the foods you eat regularly and figure out whether they are healthy or not. Don’t get fooled by the deceptively healthy snacks just pretending to be good for you.

The basic nutritional advice includes:

  • Eat unprocessed foods
  • Eat more veggies
  • Use meat as a side dish, not a main course
  • Eat whole grains, not refined grains[3]

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Eat whole grains when you want to learn how to get in shape.

    5. Watch Out for Travel

    Don’t let a four-day holiday interfere with your attempts when you’re learning how to get in shape. I don’t mean that you need to follow your diet and exercise plan without any excursion, but when you are in the first few weeks, still forming habits, be careful that a week long break doesn’t terminate your progress.

    This is also true of schedule changes that leave you suddenly busy or make it difficult to exercise. Have a backup plan so you can be consistent, at least for the first month when you are forming habits.

    If travel is on your schedule and can’t be avoided, make an exercise plan before you go[4], and make sure to pack exercise clothes and an exercise mat as motivation to keep you on track.

    6. Start Slow

    Ever start an exercise plan by running ten miles and then puking your guts out? Maybe you aren’t that extreme, but burnout is common early on when learning how to get in shape. You have a lifetime to be healthy, so don’t try to go from couch potato to athletic superstar in a week.

    If you are starting a running regime, for example, run less than you can to start. Starting strength training? Work with less weight than you could theoretically lift. Increasing intensity and pushing yourself can come later when your body becomes comfortable with regular exercise.

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    7. Be Careful When Choosing a Workout Partner

    Should you have a workout partner? That depends. Workout partners can help you stay motivated and make exercising more fun. But they can also stop you from reaching your goals.

    My suggestion would be to have a workout partner, but when you start to plateau (either in physical ability, weight loss/gain, or overall health) and you haven’t reached your goals, consider mixing things up a bit.

    If you plateau, you may need to make changes to continue improving. In this case it’s important to talk to your workout partner about the changes you want to make, and if they don’t seem motivated to continue, offer a thirty day break where you both try different activities.

    I notice that guys working out together tend to match strength after a brief adjustment phase. Even if both are trying to improve, something seems to stall improvement once they reach a certain point. I found that I was able to lift as much as 30-50% more after taking a short break from my regular workout partner.

    Final Thoughts

    Learning how to get in shape in as little as two weeks sounds daunting, but if you’re motivated and have the time and energy to devote to it, it’s certainly possible.

    Find an exercise routine that works for you, eat healthy, drink lots of water, and watch as the transformation begins.

    More Tips on Getting in Shape

    Featured photo credit: Alexander Redl via unsplash.com

    Reference

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