How to Stay Awake, The Healthy Way

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We’ve all been there; holed up in the library into the wee hours of the morning.  Halfway through your second go at your Beowulf term paper, you look to your left and see Grendel.  And then you wake up, drool spilling onto your keyboard, hoping you haven’t been snoring.  Instead of hooking yourself up to a Red Bull drip, here are some do’s and don’ts of staying awake!

Don’t consume foods and drinks with a lot of sugar.  It might give you the illusion of energy, but you need to prepare yourself for the crash.  Have you ever looked at how many grams of sugar are in a can of Monster?  Just don’t.

Do consume foods that are natural energy boosters!  Snacks like nuts and dried fruits are sustained energy boosters.  For meals, cook up whole-wheat pasta or bring a peanut butter sandwich on whole grain bread with you.  These things will give you the carbs you need to wake up.

Don’t worry about taking a break.  Everyone wants to finish as soon as they can, but this sometimes leads to sloppy work.  Working for a few extra minutes could mean the difference between an A and a B.

Do take a walk outside.  Your work will be fine alone for a few minutes, it doesn’t need constant supervision.  Getting some fresh air will give your brain a boost so you can look at your work with new eyes.

Don’t sit in the same place all night.  Explore some new study spots, you’ll feel re-inspired.

Do get physical.  If you don’t mind doing a mini-cardio workout in the middle of the library, do 5 minutes of jumping jacks.  It’ll get your heart pumping.

Don’t go to the library empty handed.  Think about all of the things you’ll need before you get there so you can begin working without further interruption.

Do bring snacks with you!  Late at night is when your body is craving sugar.  Now that you know which kinds of foods you should eat to keep you up, bring a small, energy-boosting snack for every two hours you plan on working.

Junior > Journalism > New York University

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