I am a proud mum to two little kids. I love them. They are the best. But my goodness … they exhaust me! It’s a never ending stream of fights, arguments, laughter, tears and noise: a bit like looking after 2 small drunk people. And it’s inevitable that as I try and keep everything together and deal with the chaos (which agitates me, because I am slightly OCD!), I forget to look after myself.
Quite often, I leave the house without breakfast and my hair is nest-like. On a number of occasions I’ve forgotten to tie the laces on my trainers, only noticing when I almost wipe out at the school gates. Smooth!
What happens when I forget to look after myself? I lose energy. I become grumpy. I lose focus. Add daily back pain to the mix, and sometimes I just want to curl up and sleep.
Trying to find out what I need to do to keep me ticking over and energised on those difficult days has been a matter of trial and error. But I have found a few things that keep me going … because let’s face it, kids or no kids, life isn’t insta-perfect!
5 Healthy Ways to Stay Energised On-The-Go
I have learnt the hard way. I need breakfast! It is the most important meal for me (because it breaks the fast!) and sets me up for the rest of the day. If I skip it … don’t bother talking to me! If I’ve got time, I will make a proper, filling breakfast. Anything from eggs to porridge.
When I’m pushed for time, a quick smoothie is good, or overnight oats (but I need to be prepared!). If I know I’m facing a busy week, I make sure I’ve got some granola or breakfast bake ready – so I can just grab and go.
It’s easy to forget to top up on water throughout the day. But many times when I feel slow and groggy, I am in fact dehydrated. It’s very noticeable here in Johannesburg (thanks to the altitude and dryness). I really try to drink water and lemon first thing before breakfast … and then with the help of my trusty water bottle, sip-as-I-go! It makes a difference.
Carry Nuts and Seeds in My Bag
This has become a bit of a must-have! I have found myself out-and-about, running errands and realising I’ve missed lunch. Or I’m just plain hungry. If I get too hungry, I get tired and irritable, so having a small pack of raw nuts or seeds in my bag is a lifesaver. It stops me buying a chocolate bar (if I’m close to a shop), and it gives me an immediate boost if there are no better alternatives to hand.
I have also made peace with snacking … partly because what I snack on has changed (good bye chocolates, crisps and biscuits). If I am hungry between meals and need an energy boost, I eat. I try to make sure I’ve got avocados, nut butter, hummus, nuts and crackers at home, along with fruit and vegetables. Carbs will offer a pick-me-up. Protein keeps up my energy. And fat makes the energy last.
Sip on Green Tea
Don’t get me wrong, I love my coffee and there is always room for it in my day. But I can’t have endless cups … for many good reasons. So I have taken to having green tea for my afternoon boost. It contains caffeine, helping to lift the foggy haze. But it’s also proven to reduce cholesterol, and it detoxifies the body and suppresses untimely food cravings. It’s super powers are endless!
Of course, when I’m in Superwoman-mode, I am well-groomed, well-fuelled, well-hydrated and I’ve worked out. But some days it’s just not possible!
What works for you? I would love to hear your recommendations. Add your comment to the comments section below.