Updated: Aug 28, 2022
Aging is a normal part of life. Along with aging, it’s common to experience a gradual loss of energy. I like to call this the fatigued 40s – and it’s a real thing! Your children are in their teens and pre-teens and giving you more attitude. Your parents are getting older, which can add stress. Your career is likely at its height, plus your hormones are crazy!
Your 40s and 50s are undeniably an overwhelming time in your life. Add this on top of the physiological effects of aging, and it’s no surprise you’re feeling less energized. That doesn’t mean you have to lose your vibrancy, vigor, and energy as you age.
There are plenty of strategies and lifestyle adjustments you can make to boost your energy level in your 40s. Today, I’m sharing with you the ones I’ve found most helpful.
How to Have More Energy in Your 40s
1. Prioritize your sleep.
One surefire way to start off your day on the wrong foot is if you haven’t gotten enough sleep. Trying to push through a day exhausted will make all the rest of these tips harder. That’s why getting enough, good-quality sleep is a priority for me.
As a teacher, I have to get up crazy early, which means an earlier bedtime. If I need to go to bed at the same time as my daughters, I do! I feel like a different person after a night of solid sleep.
2. Exercise regularly.
Maybe you’ve heard of “runner’s high” – the post-run, endorphin-induced euphoria celebrated by casual joggers and track stars alike. Well, there’s science behind that feeling, and it doesn’t just come from a vigorous run!
Exercise has a multitude of benefits, including boosting your energy. According to Harvard Health, exercising increases the oxygen circulation in your body, allowing your body to use energy more efficiently. You’ll also feel energized by the hormones released during physical activity.
I incorporate Pilates and cardio workouts regularly in my routine. My life is fast-paced, but even I can set aside 20 minutes for a quick workout. Exercising gives me so much more energy and focus, and I’m able to feel more present and handle anything I need to!
3. Give meditation a try.
It may seem counterintuitive to boost your energy through a calming ritual like breathwork and meditation, but it actually increases energy! Studies have found that meditation can improve your brain’s executive function. This can help you make better decisions throughout the day. Meditating can also reduce stress, which is a big component of how energized you feel.
You can try meditating on your own or take a guided class online. I love any Deepak Chopra meditation on Youtube. If breathwork is what you want to focus on, try some of these Pilates breathing exercises!
4. Get out in nature.
Unless you work outdoors, you probably don’t spend a significant amount of time in nature. There are tons of benefits to getting out in nature, from the boost of vitamin D to breathing fresh air. Just spending an extra 20 minutes a day outside can improve your mood and your energy drastically! Try going on a walk around the block at lunchtime or after work to sustain your energy levels and soak up the sun.
5. Fuel your body mindfully.
“Healthy eating” is an ambiguous term, and no two people are alike in their specific diet needs. When it comes to what you eat, I like to practice intuitive eating. Intuitive eating means that you are mindful and listen to your body and what it needs. Once you start paying attention to how your body feels, you might notice your energy increases or decreases depending on what you eat.
6. Choose more low glycemic index foods.
Along with eating more mindfully, consider the components of the foods you eat. Low glycemic index foods have sugars that are absorbed more slowly. This gives your body a longer, more stable source of energy than refined sugars and starches, which cause your blood sugar to spike and fall rapidly.
If you struggle with feeling tired around midday, this could be one reason why. High-fiber foods like oatmeal and whole grain bread are good breakfast options to keep your energy levels sustained.
7. Control your caffeine intake.
A morning cup of coffee is most people’s go-to energy booster. But if you’re refilling all day long, the caffeine might keep you up and interfere with your circadian rhythm. As I mentioned before, sleep is such a crucial part of having more energy, so be careful with your caffeine intake! Drinking too much coffee is also associated with higher blood pressure. A good general rule of thumb is to avoid having anything caffeinated after 2 p.m.
8. Stay hydrated.
Are you getting enough water every day? Dehydration can wreak havoc on your body, including your energy levels. One of the side effects of dehydration is feeling fatigued. If you struggle to keep up with your water intake, make sure you have a water bottle with you at all times.
9. Read every day.
Having a consistent routine can also help you feel more energized throughout the day. One thing I definitely recommend incorporating is to read daily. Even if it’s just 10 pages, reading will help you learn and keep an open mind to new ideas. Try reading before bed for a peaceful nighttime routine!
10. Talk to your doctor.
There might be a more serious explanation for your decreased energy levels. Anytime you notice something different about your body or how you’re feeling, it’s a good idea to talk to your doctor. One common medical reason for increased fatigue is problems with your thyroid gland. Even if it isn’t anything serious, your doctor will be able to get to the root of your energy levels and make appropriate suggestions.
11. Be on top of your hormone health.
Over age 40, women’s hormones often start going a little crazy. Estrogen levels fluctuate rapidly, and you may begin to experience perimenopausal symptoms. Getting your hormones in check can help you feel energized and be a total game changer.
We’re lucky to live in a time where we have plentiful health care options, from traditional doctors to more therapeutic remedies. I do virtual sessions with Dr. Patricia Botet at the Yinova Center, and she is amazing! She has me on specific herbs I take daily to help balance my hormones. This helps my mood, energy level, and overall health.
12. Restock your medicine cabinets.
Along with managing your hormone health and talking to your doctor, incorporating vitamins or supplements as needed could help boost your energy. Many different vitamins and micronutrients can have big impacts on your energy levels and mood. Fish oil supplements especially have been linked to increased energy due to the levels of omega-3 fatty acids.
You don’t have to just “put up with” lower energy in your 40s.
On top of everything else you’re managing in your 40s and 50s, you don’t have to put up with lower energy and fatigue. While the fatigued 40s is a real thing, there are steps you can take to boost your energy, reduce your stress level, and maintain your sanity. Whether you’re adding something to your routine – exercise, supplements – or reducing something else – caffeine, stress – find the right balance for you.
When it comes to your health, the right solution is so individualized. But these tips will give you a place to start. Remember, it’s never too late to work on becoming the best version of yourself! For more on all things Pilates, head on over to our blog, or give us a follow on Instagram. Until next time, wishing you the best of luck as you make these necessary changes to your life!