Being consistent with your exercise routine takes time and motivation. And let’s be honest, it’s not always easy. Some days you may feel tired or have low energy levels, making exercise less likely. Although you can easily reach for a pre-workout supplement to help pump you up for your workout, a lot of them contain caffeine, which is not always ideal, especially if you prefer to exercise in the evenings.
For those who prefer a late-night workout session, or those who are sensitive to, or prefer to, stay away from caffeine, how can we increase our energy levels to ensure we are still being consistent with our exercise? Below are some tips to boost your energy levels for exercise without loading up on caffeine.
Hydration pre-workout is just as, if not more, important than hydration post-workout. When we are working up a sweat, we lose valuable electrolytes that our body needs for our muscles to function properly and have the energy to push ourselves in the gym, or wherever we plan to exercise.
Grabbing a quick sports hydration drink, such as Naked Nutrition’s citrus electrolytes powder packets, makes it easy to get in a steady source of energy while also helping to increase overall exercise endurance.
Creatine is a substance found naturally in muscle cells that have been used as a popular supplement for exercise performance for nearly two centuries . There is a plethora of research that supports creatine as a supplement to provide energy to our cells and increase overall energy in the body to support improved exercise performance along with gains in muscle and strength .
Supplementing with a high-quality creatine powder, such as creatine monohydrate, before a workout can be an easy way to boost your energy levels and make sure you are getting the most out of your sweat session. Although studies on when to take creatine haven’t provided clear recommendations, many support taking creatine shortly before a workout, such as 30 minutes before exercise .
Although it may seem counter-intuitive to consider a light workout before your regular exercise routine to increase energy, there is a lot of power in a light warm-up.
It’s important to get the blood pumping before jumping into any strenuous cardiovascular or strengthening exercise to prevent injury. Doing a light 5-minute jog or, another form of warm-up allows your body the ability to move better and efficiently produce energy during your actual workout than if you skipped it altogether.
Are you struggling to get motivated to add a warm-up to your routine? You can help boost your energy and motivation levels by incorporating some upbeat music to get you in the mood and pumped for your workout. Not only does music help get us in the mood to move our bodies, but it can also motivate us to push through more challenging exercises to get more out of our workout sessions.
Last, but certainly not least, you need to be properly fueled to feel energized for a workout. This means prioritizing a balanced pre-workout snack or meal depending on the timing of your exercise. Not only can a high-quality meal help you perform better, but it can also help you recover faster.
According to the American College of Sports Medicine, within 2-4 hours of a workout, you should aim to consume a snack or meal that contains a combination of complex carbs and lean protein while being low in fat and fiber. Some examples include oatmeal with berries, a small portion of nuts, low-fat Greek yogurt or grilled chicken, brown rice, and green beans.
For those who prefer to workout first thing in the morning and don’t want to wait 2-4 hours after their first meal, consider a small snack high in complex carbs within 30 minutes of your workout, such as a banana or a granola bar .
Everyone will experience low-energy levels when it comes to exercise at some point. Whether you did not sleep well the night before, you are experiencing a lot of stress, or you simply had a long day at work, you don’t need to reach for caffeine to get that workout in. Instead, try some of the tips above to help give you natural energy while still supporting your health and fitness goals.