Increasing your stamina, endurance, and energy at your desk

Can you maintain your productivity all day?  Even if you do start out the day with plenty of zest, you may eventually feel that energy slipping away. You can be zipping along just fine, then—Boom!—you hit what sports enthusiasts call "The Wall." How well you handle your energy budget will determine whether you break through the Wall and move on to the rest of your day—or just bounce off and slog through the mental mud.

There’s no magic pill to help you increase your endurance or skyrocket your stamina. If you Google “increase your stamina” and “increase your endurance,” you’ll keep coming upon exercise tips (at least you will once you get past all the ads for vitamins and, yes, magic pills). There’s a good reason for that. Much of your ability to make it through the entire day is based on your physical well being. Simply put, you can’t keep going for long if you don’t feel good, so it’s vital that you use maintain good health—which means exercising regularly, eating right, staying hydrated, and getting sufficient sleep. Supplements like vitamins and minerals may also help increase your energy endurance.  However, avoid ingesting too much coffee and other stimulants, since they’ll only pick you up for a little while before slamming you back down.

If you want to increase your endurance and stamina, and stay alert longer, practice these tips on a daily basis:

·        Exercise vigorously, to increase cardiovascular activity. This will help you burn fat and build energy-producing lean muscle mass. You should perform at least two cardio workouts per week.

·        Eat a healthy mix of high-energy proteins and carbohydrates, but not so much that it turns to fat and drags you down.

·        Don’t skip meals, especially breakfast.

·        Eat five or six small meals a day.

·        Drink your minimum daily requirement of water. Remember, there’s a calculator available at http://www.bottledwater.org/public/hydcal/input1.html to help you estimate how much you need.

·        Cut back on all stimulants and caffeinated drinks, including coffee, sodas, and tea. Decaffeinated herbal tea is still good, especially green tea, which can help speed up your metabolism a tad.

Following these tips won’t necessarily result in an immediate increase in your energy endurance, but after a few days, you will start to notice a difference. As with everything else you do, you’ll need to work on increasing your endurance a bit at a time.

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Comments

  1. “Much of your ability to make it through the entire day is based on your physical well being.”

    Laura, I especially appreciate this line. As a frequent traveler, author and triathlete (among all those other roles!) I know how important it can be to watch the physical level of my own experience.

    Thanks for reminding us readers about this aspect of the picture.

    Oh, have you seen Carmichael’s new book? Might be worth a review along with all the other ideas you mention here!

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