Thursday, March 13, 2008

Wake Up

As any typical office cohabitant, I sit at my desk typing feverishly for the majority of the day, with small breaks here and there to answer the phone, yell at an intern or participate in some sort of meeting. And, just like the my cohabitants and every other slave to society stuck behind a desk for 8 hours a day, two things happen in the late afternoon. I get very hungry, and very very tired. It is usually about this time that I send whichever intern has managed to annoy me the most to the local Starbucks for my 2nd helping of a venti white chocolate mocha. Yes, I drink two of those huge, energy boosting, caffeine-sugar hybrid, girly, horribly cliche $5 drinks a day ( and I don't even like Starbucks.. but that's another blog).

This particular week, I have been unusually exhausted anyway, with my travels to Tampa ( again another blog) and the Apartment Search ( another blog, but will be written once the stress is relieved and I am no longer angry), so by the time late afternoon rolled around today, I was about ready to pass out on my desk. I lazily finished up some typing, and considered my options. I could steal a few minutes of shut eye by sitting in the restroom, or I could send my least favorite intern to Starbucks, or, I could run downstairs and buy a Mt. Dew. I opted for Mt. Dew, and while I was there I came upon something new. A limited edition Snickers bar, containing, ( as I thanked the heavens above) caffeine.

Now, this snickers seemed a. a godsend, and b. suspicious. I felt as though I was a lab rat, being trying out some new drug. I didn't know what to expect. So, I ate it. It tasted sort of "off" meaning that it tasted as a snickers should, but also, somehow strange, like how aspirin tastes if you accidentally get some stuck to your tongue before you swallow it ( or God forbid, chew it up). I was expecting chocolaty goodness, with an added kick, and ended up tasting something like chemicals adhering to the roof of my mouth.

Maybe I was just making this up in my mind, since I was pretending I was trying a new drug, so, to calm my fears that I just ingested a toxic chemical based substance disguised as chocolate, I turned to the Internet. Where I found: At least the aftertaste was normal, and I wasn't the only one who has dealt with it, and I began to release my fear that I had accidentally poisoned myself.

As for the added kick I was hoping for in order to get through the rest of my work day and the long evening apartment searching I had planned, I do feel more alert, though, somewhat anxious.

For the future, I think I prefer my snickers in the sleepy version.


The Critic said...

The reason tea time is the time that it is goes back to the Duchess of Bedford who used to get hungry and a little drowsy in the late afternoons. It can fall anywhere between 3 and 5pm, so what you're experiencing is completely natural.

Unfortunately, guzzling down a Starbucks or a Mt. Dew at that late in the day is likely to play a bit of havoc with not only what time you finally go to bed (caffeine has a four hour half life in the bloodstream, thus by 7 it's like you drank half a Mt. Dew and by 11 it's like you drank a quarter Mt. Dew, and you can adjust those hours back depending on what time you consume), but it also makes your night time rest less restful.

You jolt the body's systems with a stimulant, then while it's still rattling 'round inside you, you lay down and try to sleep. You might achiever unconsciousness, but your physical operations are still at primed and ready to go.

Seeing as how it's close to the end of your workday when this feeling hits you, I'd recommend two things.

One.) If you have an office, shut the door and either take a fifteen minute power nap or do a few basic calisthenics to give your metabolism a kick (alternately, if you are in a tall building, you could walk up several flights of stairs). It'll wake you up, provide the energy boost you need to finish your day without messing up your sleep habits, and in a couple weeks you'll actually start to not feel as tired at that time anymore.

Two.) Consider switching to something with less caffeine like tea. You could do this as a hot tea or as a Snapple or similar bottled tea. Black tea has the most caffeine, green tea the least, and ginseng is a worthless addition, so skip it. Tea has a little less than half the caffeine of coffee, so it should disturb your sleeping patterns a lot less and ultimately result in more restful sleep.

Now, if you'll excuse me, I have to go get my second cup of coffee.

The Critic said...


Anonymous said...

if you really want to be skinny mini then you have to learn self control like getting rid of snickers or tim hortons while you sitting on your butt all day its just common sense!!

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