I went out the other night. Late. And I may have had one, or two, too many glasses of wine which I was reminded of by my headache the next morning as the alarm rang before 5am. I can (sometimes) function with little sleep, and sometimes function with a slight hangover but both on the same day when I have to go to work and be motivating is not ideal. So, how do you get through a day when you all you would rather do is stay in bed? Here is what not to do, or at least what I don’t do.
Do not skip your coffee, as this is not the day to attempt to be caffeine-free. To be honest, for me I don’t drink coffee for the caffeine, but rather for the routine. The first thing that I do every single morning is brew coffee. That alone stimulates me to wake up more than drinking coffee does. But just stick to one cup of coffee, and add to that a really large glass of water with some lemon and a touch of salt. You are electrolyte depleted after a boozy night and dehydration will only contribute to low energy when you are sleep-deprived and over-tired. While the coffee is brewing, drink your natural electrolyte drink and then continue to consume water all day. I promise you water will do more for you than grabbing a second cup of Joe.
Do not skip breakfast. Whether you are too tired or rushed to make it or you just can’t stomach the thought of eating, skipping breakfast is a bad idea. What you really need is a balanced and energy-rich meal to start your day. I’m sure the last thing you want is something healthy but you will thank yourself for it later. The best option, in my opinion, is a smoothie full of foods containing potassium. Throw in a banana, a date, some spinach and a bit of yoghurt, for its probiotic benefit. Fill it with coconut water and guzzle it down. Eggs are another option, not from your favourite fast food joint, but rather homemade. If you are in a rush, take some quick oats, put them into a container and add some almond milk, a bit of honey, a sliced banana and some cinnamon (for flavour) and eat it when you’re feeling a little bit better.
Do not skip your workout. Tone it down a bit, but going to the gym, again in my opinion, is the best way to make yourself feel human again and energize you so you can get through the rest of the day. I suggest getting there during your lunch break, because if you wait until after work there is no way you will make it. Start out slow. Do a gentle warmup on the bike then sit down for a few stretches and some core work. When you feel a bit of sweat on your skin get back to the cardio and do 20 minutes of a moderately paced workout. If you feel like more, keep going but don’t overdo it. The idea is to energize yourself, not punish yourself. Hit the weights after and put yourself through a 5 exercise circuit that hits every muscle in your body. After you have gone through it 3 times, throw in the towel and get back to your day.
I don’t function well when I am tired but I function even worse when I deviate from my routine. Hydration, healthy foods and a light workout are 3 major boosts when you are tired, hungover or both. And remember to send all your health and wellness questions to me here at [email protected].