Are you looking to have more energy to blast through your gym sessions?
Our daily energy needs are mostly met by the calories in the food we eat. But when you’re on a weight-loss journey, extra energy in food form can be counterproductive to our efforts in the gym. However there are other sources of energy that can actually help you boost the burn and shed even more kilos as well as help you achieve a toned look.
Here’s a few tips and tricks that you can use to boost your energy levels so that you can train harder as well as boost your metabolism, without having to add additional calories to your diet!
The obvious choice when looking for a quick energy boost is a stimulant like caffeine, green tea extract, bitter orange, guarana, yerba mate or ginseng. These psychoactive drugs have the ability to improve both your mental and physical function.
Stimulants are quick-acting for an immediate kick and enhance alertness and wakefulness, improve your mood, boost energy levels and endurance, and they also improve movement. They can also dampen your feelings of hunger, and will boost your metabolism.
You can take them in pure form or use products that contain them, like a few strong cups of coffee or a thermogenic fat burner or energy drink. However, beware of the calorie content of energy drinks as they can add significantly to your daily total.
Eat more nutrient-dense foods
Certain foods pack a bigger punch than others, calorie for calorie. Nutrient density is a measure of the ratio of nutrient content (in grams) to the total energy content (in kilocalories or joules). Nutrient dense foods will have a high level of nutrients, which include vitamins, minerals, phytonutrients and essential fatty acids, in relation to the number of calories the food contains. This means you can eat less food and still get all the nutrition your body needs, which helps to boost energy levels and keeps you healthy while on low calorie diets.
Raw natural foods in their unaltered state generally have the highest nutrient density. Many raw foodists are able to live active lifestyles on just 1,000 calories a day.
If you’re feeling tired and low on energy while dieting down, more sleep can help to boost your energy levels. Ensure you get at least 7-8 hours of sleep a night when you start dieting and take power naps during the day whenever you can or right before you daily workout. Just 20-30 minutes of sleep can leave you feeling energised and ready to move some heavy weights.
Carb cycling is a great way to manipulate you daily carb intake to improve your body’s sensitivity to insulin while also benefiting from the periodic energy surge carbs supply ie. glycogen.
By following this approach you can effectively tone and condition your body by adding more muscle and reducing stored fat, while simultaneously reducing your body’s tendency to store excess carbs as body fat. The impact that this dietary technique has on powerful hormones such as insulin and glucagon also improves the body’s ability to tap into stored fat and metabolise it during exercise and throughout the day.
Proper hydration is a key element in energy production, and is something many athletes overlook. This is why one of the most common reasons for low energy levels is not drinking enough water. Water can also make you feel full, which gives you a feeling of satiety after a hard day of dieting. This can often be the psychological boost your mind needs to get to the gym.
Mental fatigue can often manifest as physical fatigue. That is why some quiet time or meditation can help to boost energy levels and leave you feeling invigorated and refreshed. Meditating also allows you to conserve some of the energy that may have otherwise been wasted during the day.
Author: Logan Leigh Rix
Logan blends her passion and profession by working as a digital and social media marketer and content creator in the fitness, health and wellness industry. She’s also a personal trainer, former Face of Fitness finalist and Fitness Magazine featured athlete.