Since the year 2000 or so when I first started developing symptoms of schizophrenia, I have had problems with the amount of energy I had during the day. Struggling to do a full day’s work without feeling incredibly tired and lethargic doing so. If I activate in the morning and move about I find I am at peak energy in this period, then around ten or eleven I start to fade and getting things done and moving about becomes harder to manifest. If I sit down in the morning I start to become sluggish so writing at my stand-up desk and using my time to write first thing in the morning helps me to achieve more in my day. I am a big believer in eating the frog. I do the hard thing first because I know I won’t want to do it later. So I try to achieve in the morning and that makes me feel like I’ve achieved something and the day was a win.
Taking medication for schizophrenia from 2001 onward led me to rapid weight gain which compounded this issue. Starting to use a CPAP machine in the last five years has helped and provided an uptick in the mornings. I have more energy when I exercise and while I’m not exercising at the moment due to seasonal illness, it generally provides me with more energy for the day and the days following. I have led a very sedentary lifestyle for the past twenty years of my life, although I was quite active before that period.
I changed the layout of our sunroom in our house, where I now have my standup desk with a big screen aloft and a lot of the floor space has given me a chance to put on youtube videos of yoga workouts and then low-impact cardio which has helped me to exercise in ways that don’t injure my heavy body and have made me more flexible.
I wish to double down on this once I am over my cough and despite there being a lot of resistance in my mind to doing exercise before I write. This will be the best way forward to maximise my energy levels in order to better serve myself and the people in my life. I also take modafinil every day which probably helps me to be a bit sharper but I don’t know whether the medication has diminishing returns.