The days are starting to get longer again, the sun is making more of an appearance and you would think that your mood and state of mind would be at its best. But especially on the first warm days of spring, we often feel tired and languid. We tell you what causes spring fatigue and what you can do about it.
- Always tired? The causes for springtime fatigue
- What to do if the spring fatigue lasts
- 5 tips for a fit start into spring
Always tired? The causes for springtime fatigue
Despite the emerging summer feelings, you are constantly tired and lacking energy? That sounds like typical spring fatigue. We took a closer look and found out for you what lies behind this phenomenon. For a long time it was assumed that the fatigue occures due to a lack of vitamin intake over the winter. But now we know that the imbalance of the two hormones melatonin and serotonin is responsible for the lethargy. Melatonin is the “sleep hormone” and serotonin is the so-called “happiness hormone”. The hormone serotonin is produced more with increasing light intensity and melatonin, which is only released in the dark, is produced less. As the days become longer again in spring, the body releases more serotonin. In this transition phase – in the phase in which the body slowly produces more serotonin and less melatonin – the hormone level must readjust.
Another reason for fatigue is the change in climate from cooler to warmer temperatures. The body has to go through a change and the organism reacts to this by dilating the blood vessels and lowering the blood pressure. This process makes us tired and can sometimes also lead to a feeling of dizziness. The body needs some time to readjust to the weather. This process takes about two to four weeks. Once it is completed, everything should be back to normal and you can start the summer happy and full of energy.
What to do if the spring fatigue lasts
If your spring fatigue lasts for more than a few weeks, it could also have another background. You should then see a doctor, because if the tiredness is caused by a sleep disorder, for example, this should be specifically addressed. For example, you can go to a sleep lab to have your sleep quality checked. In the sleep lab, body functions such as brain waves, breathing, movements and heart activity are tracked.
However, fatigue can also indicate certain illnesses or chronic fatigue syndrome. In any case, you should have this clarified by a doctor and have yourself checked out.
5 tips for a fit start into spring
With the following 5 tips you can fight your spring fatigue and start the day with more energy.
1. Get some fresh air
Fresh air in the morning drives away sorrow and worries. After getting up, open all the windows and let some fresh spring air into the room. Feel free to open the doors in your flat to allow the air to circulate. The oxygen will wake you up and the first rays of sunshine will put you in a good mood. As already mentioned, bright light reduces the production of melatonin and increases the production of the “happiness hormone” serotonin. A few rays of sunshine in the morning will therefore improve your mood and increase your motivation.
2. Hot and cold showers for the blood circulation
Hot and cold showers are ideal for getting the blood circulation going in the morning. The change in temperature causes the blood vessels to alternately dilate and constrict. This process has various effects on your body. Hot and cold showers have a positive effect on the immune system, metabolism, circulation, heart, heat regulation and also on your mood. They are therefore very healthy and help you get a fresh start into the day. Start with a pleasantly warm to hot shower. Then comes the uncomfortable part, where you have to get over yourself a bit: you set the water to cold and start to shower off your legs. Then it is your upper body’s turn. Repeat this process a second time and you are ready for a fresh start into the day and will not give your body a chance for spring fatigue.
Our tip: If showering in the morning is too much of a nuisance, you can try a cooling face mask or eye pads. They do not have the same effect as a cold shower but can help morning grouches get a fresh start into the day.
3. A healthy breakfast for an ideal start into the day
It is not said without a reason that breakfast is the most important meal of the day. So, you should make enough time for it in the morning. If you skip breakfast, your metabolism will drop and your brain, muscles and organs will lack the energy to work efficiently. You should therefore try to eat something no later than two to three hours after getting up.
The basis for a balanced breakfast is carbohydrates. Fruits and wholemeal or multigrain bread, for example, are suitable here. To stay full until lunch, your breakfast plan should also include enough protein. Eggs, nuts, quark, or seeds are ideal sources of protein. You will notice that with a balanced breakfast you will start the day with much more energy! In general, you should make sure you eat a balanced diet and take enough vitamins in the form of fruit and vegetables.
4. Stay hydrated
Sufficient fluid during the day is the key. Water ensures that metabolic processes function perfectly. This improves your performance and gives you more energy. In addition, sufficient hydration supports your concentration and prevents headaches. A nice side effect is that you do not get hungry as quickly. If you drink a glass of water before every meal, you will automatically eat less.
5. Out into the fresh air!
Go outside! Exercise in the fresh air provides the brain with sufficient oxygen, boosts blood circulation, and thus increases your brain power. The light also provides you with vitamin D, which strengthens our immune system. Whether it is just a short walk or a long jog, even a few minutes in the fresh air can support your immune system and suppress springtime fatigue.
Our tips for you: pack a few tasty snacks, grab your picnic blanket and you are ready for a nice Sunday picnic in the park. Fresh air and a well-balanced meal all in one, now nothing stands in the way of fighting spring fatigue.
Erik Jan Leusink/unsplash.de