by Jill Spaeth, Citizen Creative
An eight (or ten) hour work day is like a hundred meter dash. When you make it to the finish you're out of breath and so winded that you probably don't recall how you got there, let alone what you ate along the way. So, what ARE you eating? In order to get the most out of your day its important not only eat, but eat the right foods and most certainly avoid the bad ones.
1. Drink lots and LOTS of water.
Yeah, you've heard this time and time again. Water is good for you, but dare I say, it's the best thing for you. Water keeps you hydrated which means you'll be more alert, energized and ready to conquer your sprint to 6PM. I always keep my 32oz Nalgene on me with a goal of refilling it at least two times before the end of the day.
2. Snack healthy along the way.
It might be hard to sit down and eat a full meal during your sprint, unless it's during a lunch meeting. Even so, try snacking throughout the day rather than eating one large meal. When you fuel your body with regular nourishment you're supplying yourself with constant energy. Further, it takes less time to snack on an apple then it does to sit down and eat a bowl of left over pasta. Stock your desk drawers with fresh and easy to eat fruits and vegetables like apples, bananas, oranges, baby carrots, celery and grape tomatoes. If you like the crunch of a salty snack bring along a bag of microwavable popcorn or rice cakes.
3. Bring Your Own Foods to work (BYOF).
Bring your own foods to work and commit to eating only the items you have in your brown bag. It's high time to avoid those lunchroom candies or cookie trays, they're not giving you the nourishment your body needs to finish the sprint. When you bring your own foods to work you can manage your calories and your time more wisely.
4. Always start your day with breakfast.
When you eat breakfast you refuel yourself with nutrients that enable your body to function at an optimum level. Several studies have shown that by eating a hearty breakfast you'll improve your concentration, problem solving abilities, mental performance, memory and even boost your mood. Breakfast also kick-starts your metabolism- the process by which your body converts food into energy.
5. Always avoid soda
Yes, sodas are sweet, sparkly and very tempting, but don't let them tempt you. Avoid them at all costs. Sodas are 100% worthless, they have zero health benefits and will not help fuel your day - in fact they'll actually hurt you. With their high-fructose corn syrup and unnecessary sugars you're just asking for a lethargic afternoon.
The bottom line is take care of your body and it will take care of you. Fuel yourself with healthy foods and lots of water. By doing this you'll get to the finish line faster and with more energy. Trust me.
Jill is president and director of design at Citizen Creative, a firm she started in March 2010. For the past five years, Jill has served on AIGA DC's board of directors and is currently completing her second year as the nation’s youngest chapter president. When not designing or volunteering, she's probably talking about her cats (Sirloin & Cipe Pineles), or cycling in preparation for her 180 mile bike ride at the end of August or fulfilling her status as a workout-aholic at the gym.
Website: Citizen-Creative.com | Twitter: @innerspaeth