Home Leisure & Lifestyle Going to Glastonbury? Doctor Reveals 7 Ways to Avoid Festival Fatigue

Going to Glastonbury? Doctor Reveals 7 Ways to Avoid Festival Fatigue

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Sure, festivals are fun, but they’re also exhausting and they certainly put our bodies through their paces.

In fact, Glastonbury-goers will walk for 30-miles over the course of the 5-day event, a distance that most people would likely train for.

In addition to all the walking, festivals are testing for our bodies due to minimal amounts of sleep, dehydration from drinking alcohol, and a general lack of nutrients. It’s no wonder we return home feeling exhausted and run down.

To help those of us attending Glastonbury and other festivals this summer, Dr Claire Merrifield, a GP at Selph, shares her top seven tips on how to maintain energy levels and avoid burning out from exhaustion at a festival this year:

1. Try to get some quality sleep 

“Nobody goes to a festival expecting to get eight hours of sleep each night. However, it’s important to make your sleeping area as comfortable as possible and take a few steps to ensure you still get some good-quality sleep.

“Pitching your tent in a quieter spot will mean there’ll be less noise around you and you’re less likely to be woken up.

“Try to avoid drinking a lot of alcohol before bed. Alcohol makes you need to pee and also stops you getting REM sleep. Try to limit your evening alcohol consumption and make sure you stay hydrated throughout the day. This will help to prevent you waking early with a hangover.

2. Eat a high-energy, nutritious breakfast and pack power snacks 

“Alcohol consumption hinders the absorption of vital nutrients in the small intestine, including glucose, amino acids, lipids, water, vitamins and minerals.

“Each morning, try to ‘top up’ your vitamin levels and stabilise blood sugars by opting for high-protein foods and eating fruit. These can also help settle a pounding head and unsettled stomach. Foods such as eggs and Greek yoghurt are high in protein and fruits, including apples, oranges and berries, are all packed with vitamins. A refreshing smoothie can be a good option.

“Packing some high-protein peanut or almond butter is also a good idea for a great ‘on-the-go’ breakfast or ‘power snack’ option throughout the day.

“Vitamin supplements are also a great way to top up your energy levels. I would definitely recommend packing Vitamin C tablets to give your immune system a boost and B Vitamins for energy.”

3. Maintain your daily water intake 

“Your daily water intake should be anywhere between two and three litres of water a day, and a festival day should be no different.

“Especially if the weather is hot, you need to prevent extreme dehydration, and staying hydrated will help you maintain a good level of energy.”

4. Avoid taking too many caffeine supplements 

“Caffeine supplements and tablets seem like a quick and easy way to boost energy levels when you’re feeling tired, but it’s important to stick to the daily recommended amount and factor in any caffeine from tea and coffee on top of this.

“Consuming too much caffeine at once can result in an irregular heartbeat, shakiness, dizziness and anxiety, and you’ll really struggle to sleep when you go to bed.”

5. Avoid heat exhaustion 

“We are generally exposed to much more sunlight than we’re used to on a daily basis at a festival. If temperatures are also high, this canresult in heat exhaustion and sunstroke, which can result in extreme dehydration, leaving you feeling nauseous and, in some cases, very ill.

“To avoid sunstroke, wear a high-factor sunscreen and stay out of direct sunlight, particularly during the hottest parts of the day.

“Protect your skin by wearing cool, loose-fitting clothing and always wear a hat if you can. Keep a bottle of water on you at all times.

6. Incorporate nap times 

“If you’re starting to feel particularly tired, try to incorporate a quick nap into your day between watching the festival acts.

“Naps help to improve your cognitive functioning and psychomotor performance (the brain telling the body to move). 20–30 minutes of sleep can help to improve your mood and short-term memory, and will leave you feeling generally much more refreshed to get up and go again.”

7. Do some light morning exercise 

“Festivals are hard on our bodies; often we’re carrying around a heavy rucksack or shoulder bag which impacts the shoulder, and walking for several hours a day can leave our feet in some pain.

“Starting off the day with some refreshing, light exercise can help to reset our muscles and minds. Some simple yoga exercises, stretching and a light stroll (without your heavy bag) will set you up for the day.”

Dr Merrifield adds: “Festivals are extremely tiring, but even when we’re at home, tiredness and low energy can often be caused by the stresses and strains of daily life. Other times, it can be a sign that something’s not quite right with your body.

“If you are concerned you may be suffering from chronic fatigue and low energy, even before attending a festival this summer, taking a tiredness and low energy blood test can be a good way to identify the root cause.”

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