Okay, so we're all back to school and work after all that wonderful time off over the festive period, and if you're anything like me, you are probably struggling to get back into your routine.
I'm not a morning person and tend to always feel really sluggish right through until lunch time on some days, which is not helpful, as I start work at 9am!
One of my New Year's resolutions for 2015 is to make more out of my mornings. By this, I mean making sure I'm up, energised and refreshed ready for the day before I leave the house, instead of halfheartedly slapping some foundation on, grabbing a piece of toast and heading to work for a mini-nap at my desk.
There are so many faddy things that aim to wake you up, and I hate coffee, so I'm avoiding all of those. Instead, I'm trying out these 7 tips to wake me up in the morning!
Before you go to bed
1. Avoid coffee, red wine and chocolate
Apparently, some scientists have proven that these foods disturb your sleep more than any other food because the upset your intestines and while they are busy working to tackle digesting these things, your sleep will be disturbed; whether you wake up or not!
2. Don't eat dinner right before bed
Similar to the above point, it's really not advisable to eat dinner right before bed as your body will be concentrating on digesting food instead of resting. It's best to make sure you leave a good few hours in between your last meal and bedtime
3. Unwind for 30 minutes
You've probably spent your evening watching tv, playing on your phone or computer or doing some kind of studying/homework, so your brain is working hard to process these activities. For 30 miutes before you go to bed. Just spend some time not doing anything. Try some light meditation, or yoga breathing just to take your brains focus away from the devices and information it's been processing all day which will allow it to shut down properly when you hop into bed.
4. Set your alarm
Ideally, you want to be setting your alarm for a consistent time every day so your brain begins to get into a routine.
When you're setting your alarm, think about what time you need to be leaving the house, and give yourself a reasonable amount of time to wake up and get sorted. There's no use setting your alarm for 8am if you need to leave at 8.30. You might be a whizz at getting ready in only 30 minutes, but you're sure to crash mid way through the morning because you haven't allowed your body to wake up properly.
So let's think about this; do you want to take a shower in the morning? How long will it take you to get ready? What about time to make breakfast and get everything you need ready for the day? and let's add an extra 10 minutes onto that time just in case you want to take a little longer doing your hair, or sneak in a bit of morning TV? So, what time do you need to set your alarm for now?
When you wake up
4. Don't hit the snooze button
You might think that the extra 10 minutes is bliss, but actually, you're not getting any value from that post-sleep nap. You're better off setting your alarm for the time you want to need to get up and actually making the effort to get out of bed.
I promise you, once you're out of bed, the rest is easy!
5. Drink a pint of cool water
At any point in the day, you will begin to feel a little lethargic if you haven't had enough fluids. A nice big glass of cool water first thing in the morning will help re-hydrate you ready for the day, and also kick start your metabolism helping you to feel more awake and alert.
First thing in the morning might feel like the least appealing time to do any kind of exercise, but actually by doing a quick 20 minute yoga routine, or popping out for a quick jog in the fresh air will help your body wake up and get going.
Not only is this great for your fitness in the long run, but it actually helps you build energy for the day ahead, and the fitter you become, the more energy you will have in general, making mornings much more bearable.
As much as a big, carb-heavy breakfast might seem appealing, they will actually make you feel more sluggish, so try something rich in protein and anti-oxidents such as yogurt, eggs or a lovely, homemade fruit smoothie. Not only do these have the obvious improved health benefits in comparison to pancakes, a full English or even that Maccy D's breakfast (don't lie, I saw you eyeing up the drive-thru!), a protein filled start to your day will fill you up plenty and keep your energy levels up until at least lunch time!
Once your body gets into a proper routine, with plenty of time to process what it's doing in the morning, you'll find those early starts a breeze and won't dropping off in your first lesson or meeting. In fact, I'll bet you get a whole lot more done, and feel a whole lot better about yourself!
What are your tips for a bright and breezy start in the morning? I'd love to hear them in the comments!
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