Inspiring Your Own Wellbeing: Health Tips for Professionals Working on Their Feet All Day
Ways to stay energised throughout the day whilst caring for your body
- Caffeinate sensibly
Starting the day with a cup of coffee is a ritual for many people and keeping this routine consistent is actually considered beneficial as it maintains a regularity which is appreciated by our bodies.
Of course drinking too much coffee is not advised as it is a mild diuretic, and as with anything, too much is not good for you. Try to limit your intake to 3-5 cups per day and ensure you drink plenty of other fluids alongside it. If your body is short of fluids, one of the first effects will be feeling fatigued.
Avoid drinking coffee late in the day so that it doesn’t interrupt your sleep. It can be known to cause insomnia, especially when consumed in large quantities or after 2pm.
- Work out in the AM
Whilst this might not sound particularly appealing to some, working out in the morning can boost your energy levels throughout the entire day. It helps with ensuring you get a restful nights sleep and releases the stress hormones epinephrine and norepinephrine, that in modest amounts can help to energise you.
- Maintain a healthy diet
Fast food seems like the easy option after a long, tiresome shift, but the likelihood is that you will feel further drained afterwards. Consuming lots of fruit and vegetables is so important for those working a fast paced, physically draining job.
It is recommended to eat smaller, frequent meals/snacks than 3 large meals in a day as this provides you with a steadier source of energy and reduces your brains perception of fatigue.
Low glycemic index foods are foods whose sugars are absorbed at a slower rate - these include high fibre vegetables, whole grains, nuts and healthy oils. Foods within this group are believed to be more beneficial to preserving energy as opposed to foods that quickly absorb sugar and give you that short rush of energy. Proteins and fats have glycemic indexes that are close to zero.
- Get outside!
If you’re spending a lot of your day indoors, try making a conscious effort to get outside for at least 15 minutes a day. Controlled sunlight exposure of course has all sorts of health benefits including the essential absorption of vitamin D and spending time outside is linked to improved mental health and wellbeing.
- Wear high quality shoes
Your feet take the brunt of it when you’re on top of them all day so do not deny yourself investing in a pair of well supported and cushioned shoes. There are many varieties of shoe designed specifically to prevent pain that include features like arch support, small heels and wide toe boxes.
Irrespective of the brand, shoes should be replaced regularly to ensure you’re getting optimal support for your feet. It is recommended that nurses working three 12-hour shifts a week should change their shoes every 8-12 months.
Insole inserts can be a quick solution to easing lower back pain and/or foot pain. This works as the insert absorbs the shock caused when walking which relieves the pressure on your feet. You can find these available to buy at most pharmacies.
- Take a hot shower
A relaxing hot shower/bath before you go to bed helps calm you down after a busy day and can even aid with sleeping easier as it lowers your body temperature. This in turn slows down your metabolic functions such as your breathing, heart rate and digestion.
Written By Hayley Olpin