5 easy ways to beat early morning fatigue
It is common to feel groggy and disoriented in the morning as your body recovers from sleep and your brain prepares itself for the day.
Nobody likes waking up early in the morning - the amount of sleep you get never feels enough and all you have to look forward to is a never-ending day of work. It is common to feel groggy and disoriented in the morning as your body recovers from sleep and your brain prepares itself for the day. Some mornings are worse than others, however, and you just can’t seem to beat the fogginess and feel fatigued all day long. How can you beat this early morning fatigue and make the most of your day? Here is a list of things you can do to feel less tired and fatigued:
1. Fix your sleep schedule and practise good sleep hygiene
The fact is that most of us do not get as much sleep as we need. If you regularly feel tired throughout the day, you are probably not giving your body enough rest at night. The National Sleep Foundation, US, has a few suggestions to regulate your sleeping pattern:
- Get rid of all distractions at least an hour before you sleep, including phones, televisions, and anything that will grab your interest. This will help your body wind down.
- Make sure your room is cool and dark and that you stop eating at least two hours before you sleep. Avoid heavy and/or spicy meals before bedtime.
- Go to bed and wake up at around the same time daily to regulate your circadian rhythm. Expose yourself to sunlight in the morning. Regularity translates to better sleep and less fatigue in the morning and through the day.
2. Wake yourself up with water
Inadequate water intake can make you feel fatigued and tired. Keep a glass of water next to yourself and take a generous sip to wake yourself up. Carry a reusable bottle if you’re on the go a lot. Drinking water may also stimulate an early morning bowel movement.
Another way to wake yourself up with water is to try a cold shower in the morning. According to a study, published in the British Journal of Sports Medicine, cold showers can promote alertness. They’re also known to quickly wake people up, get their blood circulating and give them energy for the day ahead. Even if this seems completely impossible to do on cold mornings, try having a bath with lukewarm water and towards the end, switch to cold water for a few seconds.
3. Stretch in bed and get some exercise
A 2008 study by the University of Georgia showed that performing low-intensity exercise is the best way to beat fatigue not caused by underlying medical conditions. Interestingly, those who practised light exercise benefitted more, even more than those who did moderate levels of exercise.
Exercising is your body’s natural way of waking itself after being (mostly) immobile during the night. If you have time, go for a quick jog or bike ride as well. Otherwise, you can do some quick stretching exercises like drop squats, side bends, star jumps and side shuffles. It might feel exhausting in the beginning but you’ll notice a change in your energy levels soon.
4. Eat breakfast, but avoid sugary foods until noon
Eating a hearty and healthy breakfast will give the energy to get through the day so don’t forget to eat even if you’re in a rush or running late. However, you can try to avoid foods with added sugars as they may trigger a glucose drop and leave you feeling weary. A study published in 2010 in the Nevada Journal of Public Health studied the connection between carbohydrate intake and fatigue and showed a direct relationship between the two. Additionally, it said that a low-carb diet would improve cognition and mood.
5. Cut down on the caffeine
While this sounds counterintuitive, drinking too much caffeine can make you feel jittery and disoriented sometimes. Coffee affects everyone differently so if you feel anxious after drinking coffee or beverages containing caffeine, try limiting your intake. Studies show that coffee works by affecting a chemical that regulates the circadian rhythm of the body. Once all the caffeine is absorbed by the body (which mostly happens within 45 minutes), it can cause you to feel sleepy. Having said that, little amounts of caffeine in the morning can be good for you and wake you up as well - just know how much you are comfortable with.
For more tips, read our article on Fatigue: Symptoms, Causes, Treatment and Prevention.
Health articles in Firstpost are written by myUpchar.com, India’s first and biggest resource for verified medical information. At myUpchar, researchers and journalists work with doctors to bring you information on all things health.
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