How to Get through Winter Without Hibernating

Feeling extra fatigue is common during the winter, especially among middle-aged and older-aged people. It’s normal to feel tired occasionally after a strenuous activity or long day at work. However, feeling tired all the time is not normal. If you’re feeling a little extra fatigued lately, here are seven great ways to boost your energy.

Winter Without Hibernating

1. Exercise

When you’re feeling tired, you probably don’t want to exercise, but studies show that exercise and physical activity actually increase your energy. Regular exercise stimulates your heart rate, increases your lung capacity, and promotes good muscle tone. As your metabolism speeds up, your energy levels increase. Exercise increases oxygen to your brain and lungs, which increases mental alertness and physical stamina. Exercise is a great way to boost energy and fight fatigue.

2. Lose Extra Weight

If you’re overweight, your energy levels can suffer. Extra weight puts a strain on your body and internal organs. It decreases your physical stamina and lung capacity. Getting rid of extra, unwanted pounds will significantly boost energy levels. Even small reductions in overall body fat will improve vigor and mood and give you more energy to do things you need to do.

3. Get Enough Sleep

According to important sleep studies, lack of sleep is the main cause of daytime fatigue. It also causes problems with mental alertness and motor skills, which can result in impaired judgment, poor work performance, and irritability. Studies show that you should get seven to eight hours of uninterrupted sleep each night. If you can’t, take a short nap, 10 to 30 minutes, to restore alertness and energy. The best solution, however, is to go to bed early enough to get a full night’s sleep.

4. Stay Hydrated

Drink plenty of water; eight glasses per day is typically recommended. Dehydration zaps your energy, decreases your concentration, and impairs your physical abilities. The body is about 80 percent water, which needs to be replaced daily as it’s lost through urination and perspiration. If it isn’t, the entire body suffers with various symptoms, including fatigue. To make sure you’re drinking enough water, check the color of your urine. It should be pale yellow. If it’s darker or cloudy, you need to drink more water. Drinking water also helps to detoxify your body.

5. Eat More Often

Eating smaller meals more often will help to keep your blood sugar even throughout the day. This will boost energy, physical stamina and mental performance. Eating large meals with hours between meals can cause a spike or drop in your blood sugar. A drop will cause you to feel fatigued, and often sleepy. If you increase the frequency of your meals, make sure they are small portions to avoid weight gain.

6. Change Your Diet

Include lean proteins like fish, chicken, beans, nuts and seeds in your diet. Reach for whole grains in breads, pasta, rice and cereals. Whole grains are complex carbohydrates which take longer to digest. Refined or simple carbohydrates convert to sugar and create fluctuations in blood sugar levels. Include plenty of fruits and vegetables that are high in vitamins A, B and C. Reduce or eliminate sweets like cakes, pies, pastries and candy which have high fat and sugar contents.

7. Eliminate Stress

Believe it or not, stress can cause fatigue. Your body reacts to stress with physical, mental and emotional responses. Everyone experiences stress, but there is positive and negative stress. Positive stress helps to keep you focused and alert. Stress becomes a problem when challenges are continuous with no relaxation or break between them. Negative stress builds unwanted tension that can result in physical symptoms like headaches, high blood pressure, insomnia and fatigue.

Drew Hendricks is a professional business and startup blogger that writes for a variety of sites including The Huffington Post, Forbes and Technorati. Drew has worked at a variety of different startups as well as large advertising agencies.