Your morning sets the tone for the rest of your day, so why not make the most of it? Adding 10 new morning routine habits all at once can be a little much. So why not just add one or two of these and see how it makes you feel? Even if you’re like me and not a morning person, once you’re up and doing things you’ll start to wake up. It feels great to spend the first few hours of your day productively!
1. Wake up early
Like I said, I’m not a morning person, so I can understand how hard this is for some people. But if you’re going to fit some of these morning routine habits in, you’ve got to start your day a bit earlier! Leaving yourself enough time to get ready without rushing can take a whole lot of stress out of your morning. All kinds of stressors can pop up during your day. Avoid the stress of having to rush out the door in the morning by waking up a bit earlier. Take your time and try out some of the following habits.
2. Drink a tall glass of lemon water
During all those hours we spend sleeping, our body is resting and repairing itself. We aren’t putting any water into it at all during this time, so we wake up dehydrated. We all know how important it is to make sure we drink enough water. So why not get a good start by adding this to your morning routine? Our bodies need about 8-10 tall glasses of water per day. This is an easy way to get one out of the way! Adding lemon makes it tastier and easier to drink, plus it helps with detoxification of the liver.
3. Take your vitamins
Vitamins give you energy, so why not get that boost first thing in the morning? If you take them as part of your morning routine, you’ll get it out of the way. That way you won’t have to try and remind yourself later on when you’re going about your day. Plus, you can take them with that tall glass of lemon water we just talked about. Some vitamins are better taken with food, whereas some are better absorbed when taken away from food. Make sure to ask your naturopath how you should be taking your vitamins. If you are wondering what kind of vitamins you should be taking, come in for a visit.
4. Eat breakfast
They say it’s the most important meal of the day, after all! And it’s true. What you eat at breakfast has a huge effect on how you feel for the rest of the day.
There was a time in my life where I was eating fruit for breakfast as part of my morning routine. I thought I was making a healthy choice. But I would get really hungry again just a couple of hours later! I also felt a huge energy crash in the mid-afternoon. My naturopath at the time suggested I consume a bigger meal in the morning, one that included more protein and healthy fats. I included things like eggs, nut butters, protein shakes, flaxseeds, and chia seeds into my breakfast and wow, what a difference it made! I no longer had that voracious appetite around 10 am, and I could stay awake and energetic through my whole day of classes.
If you’re going to take one piece of advice from this article, let it be this: never, ever skip breakfast! You’ll feel drained of energy and it’s horrible for your metabolism. I recently listened to a podcast where they talked to sumo wrestlers and asked them what they do to put on so much weight. The answer? They skipped breakfast. So unless you’re going for that sumo wrestler bod, make sure you eat this most important meal!
OK, you’re going to have to bear (down) with me on this one, because the time of day where you have a bowel movement is not totally under your control. It is possible to train your body to go to the bathroom at a certain time, though. Try just sitting on the toilet in the morning until it happens. Eventually your body will learn that the morning is poo time! Having a bowel movement in the morning is great way to clear the body of toxins and any bloating that can make you feel icky during the day. Plus, most people don’t necessarily like having to use the facilities at work and end up holding it in until they get home. This is a horrible habit that will surely lead to constipation, so get it out of your system early in the morning.
Cortisol hormone is highest in the morning when you are first waking up. Exercise also increases cortisol, so this is the best time to get your physical activity in. If you hit the gym too late into the day, your cortisol will spike later and this can mess with the hormonal balance in your body. Exercise gives you energy and helps with focus and concentration, so working out in the morning sets you up nicely for the work day. Plus, it’s always nice to go about your day knowing that your workout is already done and you don’t have to drag yourself to the gym after a long day!
Meditation can help with all sorts of different conditions, mainly stress and anxiety. Meditating daily can help you to feel more calm and prepared to face stressors on your way in to work and later on throughout the day as well. Not sure how to actually meditate? There are tons of guided meditations on YouTube, and lots of free apps available on the AppStore that will take you through some exercises. If you’re on a time crunch in the morning, just use a few minutes to take some deep breaths.
If you exercise regularly, you likely do weight training and some form of cardio. But do you stretch? Flexibility is an important quality for our bodies to have in order to be limber and avoid injury. Besides, stretching your muscles feels great! And if you have assigned stretches from a chiropractor or physiotherapist, this is a great time to get them done before you get to your daily activities. Attending a yoga class or following a video at home are great ways to get some stretching in!
9. Have some family time
I recently read an article that stated that of the 23 most inspirational people of our time, 41% begin their day with family time. Some of the people who do this include former Prime Minister of the UK David Cameron, former POTUS Barack Obama, Virgin group founder Richard Branson, LinkedIn CEO Jeff Weiner, and founder of Amazon Jeff Bezos. Some of the activities they described as family time included helping their children get ready in the morning, dropping their kids off at school, chatting with their family, having breakfast with their partner, and playing with their kids. If you get the rest of your family into this morning routine, you can instill these habits in your children while they’re young. Try making breakfast and exercising as a unit as a way to get your family time in while being productive!
10. Get outside
Do you find you’re going from your house to your car to work to your car and then back in the house again? Time to get outside and reconnect with nature! Even if you live in the city, a quick walk in the park can do the trick. Being outdoors can be invigorating and give you the energy you need to face the day! Incorporating these 10 habits into your morning routine can increase your metabolism, give you more energy, and improve your overall health and happiness.
If you want any help improving your supplement regimen, exercise routine, or meditation and breathing techniques, just book a visit with Dr. Corina Kibsey, ND.
Image courtesy of: David Mao