Eight hours, shmeight hours. We know you know that sleep matters. And it does. A regular 7 or 8-hour date with your pillow is worth keeping: Adequate sleep not only helps your energy levels, but your mood, your appetite, your performance, and your overall health. But the bottom line is sometimes it just doesn’t happen.
So for those days you’re dragging—and more zzz’s simply isn’t an option—grab that second coffee and try these five tricks to power you through the day.
Slab It On
Take a cue from your lady’s medicine cabinet full of products and start your own. For sleepless nights, Kiehl’s entire line of Facial Fuel products for men has caffeine packed in, so any of the products help perk up your face on the days you’re dragging most. Our picks: Kiehl’s Facial Fuel Eye Alert (22; kiehls.com) or Facial Fuel Eye De-Puffer ($20; kiehls.com). No one will ever know.
Trust in Your Nap
Research shows that sleep deprivation can take a toll on some biological markers—increasing inflammation and decreasing immune function. But a nap can only get you so far, right? Not according to a new French study. Researchers found that after a night of two hours of sleep, even a 30-minute nap in the morning and one in the afternoon helped reduce immune system stress markers.
Egg Sammie, Please
You probably already know that eggs are rich in protein, but the yolks are also a huge source of vitamin B—which is responsible for converting food to energy, and thus ups your energy levels (that’s why you’re not supposed to take B vits at night). Eat them hard-boiled and you could score up to 23 percent of your daily value of B12 per egg. Fill up the rest of your day with these 10 energy-boosting foods and drinks.
Pay Attention to the Now
Can’t sleep? Don’t stress about it all day. A study in in JAMA Internal Medicine found that older adults with moderate sleep issues who followed a mindfulness program (being aware of your breathing, living in the now, and keeping tabs on current emotions instead of ruminating), self-reported improved sleep. What’s more: The mindfulness program was comparable in its impact to studies on both sleep medications and talk therapy, said David Black, an assistant professor of preventive medicine at the University of Southern California, in Los Angeles.
On the Rocks
If you’ve ever taken an ice bath, you know the benefits of chilled out soaking post-exercise. Cold water constricts blood vessels and reduces swelling—ideal for a night with less-than-stellar snoozing that can leave you with inflammation and some swelling. But you don’t need a whole bath to reap the benefits—just wake up with a few splashes of cold water to your face to wake up, stat. The shock of cold will up your heart rate and release a surge of adrenaline—enough to get you out of the house and on your way.