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I have to admit, for the first time in a long time, I’ve run out of steam on my workouts lately. Even after a nice, 6-day bake in the Cabo sun, I still feel like I need to go to bed the minute I get home from work at like, 6 pm.
Most days I overlook the desire to curl up in bed and snooze until my husband gets home, mostly because I feel a deep sense of guilt if I don’t workout, but I have definitely succumbed to the exhaustion a lot more lately. My legs feel heavy and my brain is a little on the mushy side.
Needless to say, the workouts I DO have, aren’t very inspired and it’s hard to be creative (here especially) when I only have so much energy after my day job is done.
I suspect three reasons for this. It could be all of them and it might be none of them, but here’s what I think:
I’ve dropped my carbs. When you do this, Your body can respond with something known as carb flu. It’s supposed to only last for a few weeks at most, but I’m going on two months of feeling “tired” now, so it’s a little too protracted to just be carb flu. Plus I’m already a low carb girl mostly, so the dietary change hasn’t been that drastic.
My sleep hasn’t been awesome. Man, I used to be able to sleep through ANYTHING, but that’s clearly not the case anymore. I plan to spend a LOT more time looking at ways to hack/improve my sleep, but for now, I consider it a win if I don’t wake up in the middle of the night with my brain racing like I’m trying to PR a 10K.
I’m feeling a little meh. Not depressed, but just a little blah. I don’t have as much interest in going out, doing fun things or spending time with people I enjoy hanging with. I seem to have less interest in everything lately. I’m chalking this one up to poor sleep, but I’m also wondering if this is a symptom of unaddressed gut issues that I may need to deal with.
I sense a modified Whole 30 in my future!!!
Either way, I wanted to share my current state because truth is, I can be an ambassador of good health all day long, but we all have days/weeks/months where the struggle of everyday life is real. The key thing I want to impress is that I have a strong sense of self-awareness about my body/mind and I now know when things are off kilter (even if I don’t yet know why).
So for the month of April, I plan to start doing a few things differently, just to see if I can dial in on what’s causing my energy leak, and provide a little insight into how I go about zeroing in on the cause. Because I know you’ve felt this way too. I hear it all the time from readers and clients.
In my private coaching group, I’m focusing on yoga, meditation tools and techniques and general stress management ideas. I think this will be a great way to get the proverbial ball rolling.
Aside from that, my strategy includes:
- Less weights and HIIT workouts
- More yoga
- More walking
- More time outside
- Less festering over dumb stuff
- More time counting breaths to center myself
- More journaling
- Less blogging and social media (need to get away from screens for a bit!)
- More old school books
- Less SnapChat and Instagram
- More time with my hands in soil (hello front-of-house landscape project)
- More time with my face in the sun
- Zero time playing on my phone in bed
- Less shopping
- More unloading stuff I don’t need.
- More healthy fats
- Less wine and gluten-free tortillas (sad)
- Less TV binging
- More face time with friends
- And most of all, more time sleeping. I’m gunning for 9 to 10 hours a night if I can.
This is not an arbitrary list of “good to do” action items. They are time-tested behaviors that I know work for me. Just the other night after a blissful 40-minute yoga session in my bedroom, I came downstairs in a state of complete relaxation and told my husband I had no idea why I stopped doing yoga.
But I do know.
I’ve become so aggressive with my goals lately, that I forgot to enjoy the journey. I want to be strong and lean so I lift weights and do plyometric exercises. I workout 6 days a week, eat “all the protein” and spend every waking moment working more and more (either on my day job or my coaching business).
I’m going to stop taking new clients until I get my energy back. I still have my year long group of ladies that I LOVE connecting with daily, but I wouldn’t feel good about bringing on new energy right now. Right now is about caring for my own energy.
So that’s me. I’m tired. But I have a plan that I feel good about and a deep sense of commitment for getting back to my old self again.
What do you do when you have a prolonged energy drain? Is there typically a specific reason? If you haven’t figured it out yet, look at your diet, your environment, and your day-to-day stressors. Very often it’s buried in the smallest, yet most chronic places. Feel free to share them here!! We can learn from each other!
Caren is a certified yoga teacher, fitness instructor and author of The Fit Habit. Here she shares simple, healthy recipes, home workout ideas and practical ways to foster mind + body wellness.