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The HealthStyle File- What Would You Do With An Extra Hour Each Day?

What: Money is great, but you can’t buy extra time or energy.  What if by changing a couple of little habits you could create enough excess energy to have an extra hour of fun, work or exercise each day?

Why:  Many of us begin to “annihilate” our mood and energy level as soon as we wake up.  We continue to wreck havoc on our moods/energy levels with the foods and drinks we consume and the people that we allow into our personal space.

How:  Here are five simple tips to raise your mood and energy level:

  1. Change your alarm.  If you wake up to a loud and obnoxious alarm, your body will immediately begin to manufacture stress hormones.  These hormones will raise your blood pressure and heart rate, creating a big stress reaction in your body.  Do you really want your body to be highly stressed, before you even put one foot on the floor?  Switch to an alarm that wakes you up with nature sounds or a relaxing CD of your choice.
  2. Dehydration can really change your mood.  Most of us wake up with a dry mouth, indicating that we are already dehydrated.  Then we walk into the kitchen to brew a big pot of coffee.  Coffee is not a fluid!  It will dehydrate your body even more.  I’m not telling you to dump your coffee habit (those that know me, know how much I love my morning coffee!) but start off with a glass of water first, then move onto your coffee.
  3. Excess sugar.  Sugar can really change your mood.  We all have heard about a sugar-high, soon to be followed by a sugar-low.  When you hit the sugar-low your body, in essence, says, “We don’t like this feeling, eat more sugar so I can get high again.” You then set yourself up to cycle between good and bad moods all day.  In the morning, skip the scone and go for an egg on toast or a bowl of oatmeal with some walnuts or almonds on top.
  4. The Thanksgiving size lunch.  We all know how it feels to overeat; fatigue, brain fog and a lack of motivation quickly sets in!  This can happen anytime we overeat.  So if your body requires 700 calories at lunch and your give it 1200 calories, you will feel those overeating side effects.  Portion control is important, and when it comes to your mood and energy, lunch is probably the most important meal to control.  Two ideas: eat slowly and leave a little bit on your plate. I promise you, you won’t starve.
  5. The office gossip.  Getting involved in negative talk is a real mood and energy killer.  I know that it can be difficult to walk away.  Listening to gossip or bad news (perhaps it’s time for a radio/TV break?) can really pull the plug on your energy.
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