My Morning Routine
Are you a morning person or a night owl? Well, speaking as a former night owl I am here to tell you that yes you CAN change your sleep/awake pattern, and I'll share with you my tips to implement new habits that will set your day up for success. Whether you work full time outside of the house, are the CEO of your busy household, or heck, are even retired, these tips will help you start your day with an improved mindset to tackle whatever it is you want to achieve.
I remember back to the days when I would sit on the coach every single night with my laptop until 11pm to midnight working, scrolling the internet and likely doing some online shopping all while watching TV. Looking back on that time there was no way I was focused or being productive in any one task that I was trying to achieve. Oh, and I forgot to mention that I was likely snacking on animal crackers or some other high-carb processed food. I would wake in the morning after snoozing several times in a frazzled state of grogginess, often scrambling to get ready while one or more of my kids was in the room asking for help. At this point, I was often panicked and in a state of anxiety about what I needed to accomplish and certainly wasn't creating a calm environment for my kids. My food choices were drastically different than too, which did not help my mental state.
Fast forward to today and I am now a creature of habit about my night-time and morning routine. Below is my routine most weekday mornings. Weekends are more sporadic depending on our three kids' activities but I'm typically up by 7am depending on the events from the night before :). Everyone's schedule and preferences are different but I encourage you to find at least one new morning habit you can create to set your day up for success.
The Night Before: People always ask me what time I go to bed.....for me I need a solid 7 hours of sleep a night (usually more on the weekends) so it's lights out by 10pm. If you need closer to 8 hours then yes that means going to bed earlier (and maybe before your older kids).
TIP--> Keep your phone away from your bed so you're not tempted to scroll social media and miss your bedtime. Create a dark, peaceful bedroom so that you look forward to retreating to bed earlier than normal.
Evenings are when I do my gratitude practice. I find this calms my mind and allows me to go to bed happy and excited for what I want to achieve the following day (and not focused on the "stress" of mundane tasks). I've also started journaling, which has allowed me to become more focused on my business goals.
Wake Up Time: 5am! Yes I know it's early but the only time I can fit in a workout is before my kids wake up. I started this routine after my third child was born and I was working my corporate job downtown. When I left that career to pursue health coaching, I kept this routine as I found I was much more productive when I had a dedicated block of time during the school day to take my class, work, cook and just get stuff done!
TIPS--> Set out your workout clothes (including socks, hoodie, etc) the night before. Have your water bottle ready to grab and go or keep it in the car. I also add 2 drops of an essential oil like Wild Orange or Grapefruit (which I keep in my car). If I need a little energy boost I'll inhale peppermint oil too.
Make your bed. Keeping your bedroom tidy and free of clutter really does help your mental state and allow you to be more focused and productive. Lucky for me, I wake up before my husband, so this is his job when he's in town :)
Hydrate! Our bodies are 70% water and after a good night's sleep you need to rehydrate and purify your system. I keep a glass of water on my bed side table that by morning is the perfect temperature to drink right when I wake up.
Supplements: I take my herbal supplements that need to be consumed on an empty stomach so that I don't forget.
Workout: I need accountability and energy to work out at this hour. so you will usually find me at a group fitness class. I love doing a combo of HIIT, Strength, Yoga, TRX, Circuit...anything that keeps me moving and focused on making me strong (and hopefully not thinking about my to-do list). When you work out in the morning you'll likely make better choices all day and it can help you sleep better at night.
Meditate: I need to be honest, this doesn't happen daily but it's one of my top goals for 2019. I need to meditate before I walk in the door from my morning workout and the morning craziness starts so you'll find me in my car breathing or using an app like Mindfulness, Headspace or The Honest Guys on YouTube.
Warm Water with Lemon: I remember my grandma, who just passed away this past fall, telling me to drink warm water when I had stomach aches (which I now know were all related to the foods I was eating). I used to dismiss the suggestion thinking that she didn't know what she was talking about. Well as an adult, I can say she sure was right as our stomachs are like an oven and they want warm/cooked foods and drink, especially this time of year. Shocking your body with ice cold drinks and foods isn't good for our digestion. Plus adding lemon to the warm water aids digestion, helps flush out toxins, in addition to boosting your immune system (vitamin C), maintaining pH levels in your body and helping to kick the common cold.
TIP--> I have an electric kettle that I fill with water the night before. It takes just a couple minutes to heat up (you don't want the water super hot..just warm). I juice a bunch of lemons 1-2 times a week so that I have it ready to add to my water. When I'm traveling I bring lemon essential oil.
SHOWER--> Ideally by 6:40am I'm in the shower. I save time (and resources) by not washing my hair everyday. Instead I use dry shampoo and these spiral coil hairbands(which won't leave that mark in your hair so you can still wear your hair down post workout).
BREAKFAST: While I don't follow the strict intermittent fasting rules, I do abstain from food for a 12-hour window and usually eat breakfast around 8:30/9am. The other day I went 14 hours which was a big deal for me!
TIP--> Plan and prep your breakfast if you need to be out of door first thing! I will often prep all my smoothie ingredients in the Nutri Bullet container (minus the protein powder and liquid) so that it's super easy to make in the morning. Here are two of my favorite smoothie recipes: BerryGreenSuperfoodSmoothie and Detox Green Smoothie. You can find a lot more smoothies/bowl recipes on my Instagram Feed. Overnight oats are another great grab and go meal and this zucchini bread recipe makes sure you eat your veggies for breakfast.
CAFFEINE: I make a ton of tea and always start my day with a simple green tea or a yummy matcha latte. I'm currently loving the Four Sigmatic Mushroom Matcha and Perfect Keto Matcha Green Tea, which I add to warm unsweetened almond milk.
Lunch--> I always have a plan for lunch when I need to be out the door right away. I either pack my lunch the night before (like a salad or leftovers) or grab a yummy veggie bowl from Daily Harvest.
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I would love to hear about your morning routine and anything that you do to help set your day up for maximum performance.