Get more morning energy

Richard Wickham -- The answers to getting more energy may not always be found in a can.

The moment you hear the awful sound of your alarm and your mind realizes it is morning, the snooze button begins to look very attractive.

For some students, simply opening your eyes is a daunting task. The answer to sluggish mornings is found in the bad habits of the days. Here are ways to make it easier to wake up for that way-too-early class you dread every week:

1. Just sleeping is a great place to start.

“The younger you are, the more sleep you need,” Nicole MacDonald, assistant professor of kinesiology, said.

People in their teens, as well as in their early twenties, need more sleep than someone in their thirties or forties.

“College students need about six to eight hours of sleep per day,” MacDonald said.

This amount also depends on what your workload looks like throughout the day. Students who are very active every day need more sleep than someone who does not do as much.

2. Regular exercise every day helps more than just your metabolism.

“Exercise is an energy booster, even though you think exercise takes energy,” MacDonald said.

The more we exercise, the more our cardiovascular system adapts, and the more our bodies adapt, the more efficient we become. Getting at least 30 minutes to an hour of exercise each day is recommended. It can be as simple as a brisk walk or riding your bike to class.

3. Open the blinds and let in the sun., explains that the sunlight that you first see in the morning “can shift your circadian rhythms from drowsy to alert,” meaning that when you let in the natural sunlight into your room, your brain picks up the signal to wake up. Opening your blinds while you get ready in the morning can help you wake up and remain alert.

4. Drinking water instead of coffee can help you hydrate, as well as make you feel more energized.

“Caffeine is a stimulant so it increases your heart rate and blood pressure, and so it makes you have the illusion that you have more energy,” MacDonald said.

Adding anything artificial to our bodies to wake us up is “very short term and short lived.” Water, on the other hand, rehydrates your body after a long night’s sleep and helps to “stimulate your nervous and digestive system,” according to the article “A Healthy Way To Wake Up In The Morning” on

5. Eating healthfully everyday is vital to our energy.

“Getting enough protein at every meal is more sustaining,” MacDonald said.

Eating a healthy breakfast is especially important to getting more energy in the morning. When you put it in perspective, you fast throughout the whole night while you are asleep.

When you wake up, you still have several hours before you eat lunch. When a body is deprived of protein and nutrients for that long there is not enough energy to stay awake in early morning classes. Almonds, bacon, bananas, eggs, milk and peanut butter are all great sources of protein.

Make the most out of your mornings and think of these solutions the next time you debate whether or not to hit the snooze button.

About Renee Flannery

Staff Writer

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