After a bad night’s sleep, many of us turn to caffeine for a short burst of energy. A new study, however, suggests that we may be better off taking a 10-minute walk up and down the stairs.
Researchers from the University of Georgia found that sleep-deprived adults who walked up and down stairs at a regular pace for 10 minutes felt more energized and motivated than those who consumed 50 milligrams of caffeine – the equivalent to one can of soda.
Study co-author Patrick J. O’Connor, of the Department of Kinesiology at Georgia, and colleagues say that their findings are good news for office workers, who often find it hard to pry themselves away from their desks.
“Office workers can go outside and walk, but weather can be less than ideal. It has never rained on me while walking the stairs,” says O’Connor. “And a lot of people working in office buildings have access to stairs, so it’s an option to keep some fitness while taking a short break from work.”
The findings suggest that just 10 minutes of walking may be more beneficial than a dose of caffeine when it comes to energy and motivation in the workplace.
“You may not have time to go for a swim, but you might have 10 minutes to walk up and down the stairs,” notes O’Connor.