Feeling the need for an afternoon nap but totally slammed with work? Don’t stress (or go running to your nearest Starbucks). This super effective energy boosting breathing exercise mimics cardiovascular exercise and gets your blood pumping in no time – no caffeine or sugar rush necessary.
The best part? You can do this ANYWHERE. In a meeting, on the bus, at your desk, in line at the grocery store**. Just follow these simple steps:
- Start by finding a comfortable seat and closing your eyes (if possible)
- Place one or both hands on your stomach
- Take 3 large “belly breaths” – your belly should push out slightly on the inhale, you can crunch your abs in on the exhale
- On the 3rd breath, hold your inhale as long as possible.
- Keep holding your inhale.
- When you think you can’t hold it anymore, hold it for 10 more seconds.
- Take a belly breath; this time hold your exhale (i.e. keep your lungs empty)
- Repeat this process for 2-3 minutes (approximately 2-3 rounds of inhale/exhale holding)
- Take 10 regular deep belly breaths
- Slowly open your eyes (if closed)
- Gently “shake it out” – roll your head side to side, shake out your arms, release your shoulders down, kick your legs (do this discreetly if you’re in a public place!)
- Finish by drinking at least 8 ounces of water immediately after
**I recommend trying this energy boosting breathing exercise a few times in a private space, as it is common to feel lightheaded when first practicing. Once your body gets used to the exercise, you can experiment with taking this baby public.
In the comments, tell me what you think. Do you like this energy boosting breathing exercise? How do you feel afterwards?