If you struggle to get out of bed in the morning, then these tips might help you feel perkier without giving in to caffeine.
Ensuring a productive start to the day can be more of a challenge, especially as we get into colder and darker mornings over autumn and winter than ever before, but studies show that maintaining a regular routine has huge benefits to mental wellbeing. So here at Yogaline HQ we share our top tips to help us get going in the mornings.
Having worked for almost a decade in the investment world, I’m no stranger to early mornings! Whilst sometimes it feels great to stay in bed late, I’m usually at my best when I start the day early.
- I always reserve time to do something for myself in the mornings before starting my day. This can be something simple like doing some yoga at home, going to a class, hitting the gym or simply sitting and meditating. The first hour of your morning sets the tone for the entire day, so make it a good one!
- I avoid any contact with my phone and email until after I have been awake for at least one hour. I find that this simple rule has positive ripple effects on my entire day – I feel calmer, more productive and more focused. It’s become common knowledge that we are all addicted to our phones, but knowledge isn’t anything without application – give it a try and see how you feel!
- I like to eat a hearty breakfast. I’m a big believer that we each need to find the diet and eating habits that best suit our own bodies. For me, I have found that reducing carbs and increasing my fat and protein intake makes me feel more energised and I avoid the dreaded mid-morning lull.
Working in design with retailers across continents, spanning multiple time zones, often means needing to be alert at unusual times. Combine that with the fact that I'm not a natural morning person and having a few tricks to kick start body & mind are essential.
- The humble glass of water is my most important wakeup tool! I always leave a large glass waiting on the night stand, the body loses a lot of moisture overnight, so I’m ready to rehydrate and clear my head as soon as the alarm has sounded.
- I try to be kind to my body early in the morning rather than forcing it straight into action, usually easing into movement with a gentle 10 minute flow that can be done whilst still in bed for a cosy calming stretch. The exact routine varies day to day but usually involves a supine figure 4 stretch, supine twists, a few rounds of seated cat/cow, forward fold, plus a few variations on seated twists and some gentle neck stretches.
- When it comes to facial cleansing I'm a huge advocate of the clarasonic tool; facial massage / cleanser / exfoliator in one. Using first thing in the morning gets the blood circulating and is seriously refreshing. 2 minutes of this followed by a good moisturiser and your skin will thank you all day.
- Less caffeine free, more caffeine light - I must confess I'm also a great advocate of green tea (especially with mint), to kick start metabolism. This gets me all set for a healthy hearty breakfast and whatever the new day may throw at me.
Working in the music industry I used to be a bit of a night owl until I decided to have children. They quickly changed that habit and since then I’ve been looking at ways to delay my caffeine in take as long as possible. These are the things I do and has helped me to feel less sluggish in the mornings.
- Get my clothes ready the night before. I usually try to do a workout in the morning whether that is strength conditioning, yoga, running, jiu jitsu and so I usually lay out clothes for the activity in the morning. This sets me up on a particular mindset but it also makes the morning as frictionless as possible.
- I am an advocate of cold showers. It’s the only type of shower I have these days. I read about the benefits through Wim Hof and followed his method to get me over that initial pain barrier. I had zero tolerance to cold showers and couldn’t even stand there for 10 seconds but can now go for as long as I like (usually 7-10 mins). I jump straight in if Im especially sluggish and works a lot better than any cup of coffee I’ve ever had.
- I use a device called the HumanCharger. It was developed to combat jet lag however it can also be used to wake yourself up in the morning. It’s a headphone with lights in the bud. It sounds crazy but it really works. I pop them on first thing in the morning to wake myself up.
I don’t seem to have a specific morning routine, but mornings are definitely my favourite part of the day. What I treasure the most is time. I have early starts of the day anyway, but I would usually wake up even earlier to give myself time for a nice nourishing breakfast and a cup of coffee, while watching the news or sitting by the window witnessing the world slowly coming alive. These days it feels pretty quiet, I can hear the birds singing and I enjoy the rays of sunshine powering through the window. It is pure bliss.
Do you have a morning routine or ritual that has been getting you through lockdown? Drop us a line in the comments, we’d love to hear what works for you!
Why not also start your own routine this Thursday 30th April with Marta and join us for the Good Morning Energiser Flow. Class is donation based and 100% of proceeds will go to the Charity Woman's Trust, helping vulnerable women who have experienced domestic abuse.
Team Yogaline x