Quick Ways to Banish Morning Fatigue

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We’ve all had those mornings when we just can’t shake a feeling of sluggishness, even when we’ve technically gotten enough sleep. In an effort to perk up on tired days, many of us load up on cup after cup of coffee.

But over-caffeinating can leave us jittery and anxious (not to mention perpetually running to the bathroom).

Perhaps there’s a better way to banish morning fatigue and get on with your day with the energy you need.

1. Never hit snooze

As much as we love that button at the top of our alarm clock, it might not actually be so helpful after all.

Spending the last half hour or so of night-time rest in what researchers call “fragmented sleep” has consequences for your ability to function throughout the day.

If anything, try the 90-minute sleep cycle hack by setting two alarms — one for 90 minutes before you want to wake up and one for when you actually want to wake up.


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The theory is that the 90 minutes of sleep you get between snoozes will be a full sleep cycle, allowing you to wake up after your REM state, instead of during.

2. Drink a glass of water when you wake up

Dehydration and fatigue go hand in hand and even a small case of dehydration can cause feelings of sleepiness, changes in cognitive ability, and negatively impact your mood. Have a glass of water first thing and let it freshen up your entire body before you get moving.

If you find you still can’t shake morning lethargy, try upping your intake of water and other noncaffeinated beverages throughout the day.

3. Splash water on your face

Did you know that cold showers are reported to reduce sick-day absences from work? If you don’t want to take, or don’t have time for a full shower, a splash of cold water to the face, to signal a temperature change to your body, may also do the trick.

If you want to go a step further and you really struggle just to get out of bed, keep a spray bottle or water by your bedside table so you can mist yourself without even opening your eyes!

4. Never miss breakfast

The old saying goes that “breakfast is the most important meal of the day”, true or not skipping that first meal can negatively affect your energy and ability to focus throughout the day.

Food is a fuel, so giving your body some fuel first thing, will set you up for the day ahead.

Given what you eat at breakfast can impact how you feel for hours afterwards, making the right choice is critical for your morning. If you need help with what’s right for you, reach out to our Dietitian.

5. Avoid sugar until lunch

All breakfasts are not created equal, so take stock of your morning food choices. Sugary items like sweetened coffee drinks, pastries, and breakfast cereals can lead to the classic blood sugar spike-and-drop that leaves you feeling drained.

Pay particular attention to the nutrition labels on your food and make sure that you’re aware of how much sugar you’re consuming at breakfast — if possible, cut back and find more natural sources in areas such as fruit.

6. Drink less coffee

We’re not saying not to drink coffee, just to keep an eye on how much you consume given its tendency to cause such drastic flows in your energy highs and lows.

One option if drinking coffee, is to have smaller cups. Check out this video for more in this area.


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