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Create a Healthy Morning Routine in 6 Steps

We all have that friend who swears by their 5-mile sunrise run, followed by a cold shower, and a 20-minute meditation every morning. And we couldn’t be happier that they’ve found their thing…

But what about the rest of us?

Like a “one size” shirt does not fit all, there’s no ✨one way✨ way to start your morning. It can take some trial and error to create the right morning routine for you, but never fear! We’re here to provide some concrete tips on how to create a morning routine that you’re excited to wake up to.

Why is a healthy morning routine important?

What you do right when you wake up sets the tone for the rest of the day. If you roll out of bed and head straight into the sea of your inbox, it can be difficult to regain focus.

Research shows that the average person’s stress levels (akacortisol), peak upon waking up. By calming yourself first thing, you can lift your mood and improve your ability to handle stress.

Note: this isn't a replacement for medication or therapy. If you’re experiencing ongoing anxiety, please ensure that you talk to your doctor.

1. Start small

Whoever coined the phrasego big or go home didn’t have consistency in mind. When trying to start a new routine, try integrating things gradually. Avoid trying too many new things at once. 

Excitement and vigor are powerful things, but, it can be all too easy to burn out within a week from pure overwhelm.

A 5-min morning routine that you do consistently is far better than an elaborate 2-hour routine that you do every second Thursday. Slow and steady win the race. Start with one simple thing, then add more as the weeks and months progress if that feels right for you. 

 

2. Put the phone away

Do you check your phone the minute you wake up? Don't worry, you’re not alone!

According toReviews.org, 80% of Americans check their phone withinthe first 10 minutes of waking up. 🤯

It can be difficult to not answer your boss, or stalk your ex on Instagram first thing (we’ve been there too 😬). But trust us, your brain will thank you if you spend your mornings away from your phone.

Phones have unlimited information right at your fingertips. When checked first thing, it sends your groggy brain straight to overdrive. And once you've fixated on how you’re going to respond to a client, it's going to be a challenge to focus on what needs to get done. This leaves you feeling behind when you’ve only begun. 

Our advice? Invest in an alarm clock and leave your phone out of your bedroom overnight.

 

3. Get the blood pumping

We know you roll your eyes to your friend’s “runner’s high” talk, but they have a point.

No, you don’t have to go out and run 10km (and we wouldn’t recommend it if you haven’t trained 😅). But, exercising in the morning is ahealthyway of working with your stress levels.

Not only is it a mood booster, but it keeps your brain sharp. A study from the British Journal of Sports Medicine found that morning exercise improves decision-making, visual learning, and attention throughout the day. 

Any type of movement is great! Whether you...

🕺 Cut a rug to Abba-themed dance videos

🏡 Enjoy a brisk walk

🏃 Train for your first marathon, or

🧘 Further your yoga practice...


You’ll feel a sense of accomplishment that’ll carry you throughout the day!

 

4. Enjoy a healthy breakfast

It’s no secret why we know breakfast asthe most important meal of the day:it fuels you up after a night of fasting!

This isn’t to say thatanything will suffice. Focus on eating a healthy breakfast to boost your energy levels.

By eating a nutrient-packed breakfast, you’re giving your body a head start on all the essential nutrients that it needs for the day.

A nutritious breakfast prevents you from shaking or feeling irritable frommorning hypoglycemia. This can be a dangerous situation for anyone— especially if you have diabetes.

Don’t have time to eat at home? Don’t sweat it! Try as best as you can to eat within 2-hours of waking up, and feel free to bring breakfast on the go with you. Prepping it the night before will set you up for success if mornings zip right past you.

What if you feel repulsed by eating first thing? Don’t force it! Everyone has different needs and rhythms. Try sipping on something soothing like chamomile tea.  Or, try reframing your idea about what breakfast should consist of. Eat foods that aren’t your stereotypical breakfast items.

 

Some yummy breakfast ideas include:

  • Protein smoothie
  • Oatmeal
  • Salad
  • Multigrain pancakes or waffles with fresh fruit
  • Rice bowl
  • Avocado toast
  • And how could we forget our fave high-fiberbreakfast cereal?! #shamelessplug

 

5. Meditate or journal

Before you dive into the tasks of the day, take a moment to be present with yourself. This doesn’t have to be elaborate. Meditation is a great way to practice mindfulness and can be done within 5-10mins.

Or, if you’re more of the writing type, journaling is also a great exercise in mindfulness. Try practicing some stream of consciousness work for 5min, or write 3 things that you’re grateful for. Keep it simple.

 

6. Do something you love

This is a positive vibes-only routine! 

Spend your morning doing the things that you’re genuinely excited about. Go ahead, read yourCalvin and Hobbes comic book, drink coffee on your balcony, play a few songs on the piano. Do whatever puts you in a feel-good mood!

 

Keep in mind

There is no “universal healthy morning routine,” there’s only what is perfect for you. You might find you need a 2-hour routine to face the day, or you might discover that you only need 30 minutes. Play around with it, and don’t be afraid to switch things up if you’re not loving it anymore. You’ve got this!



References

Breakfasthttps://www.betterhealth.vic.gov.au/health/healthyliving/breakfast#can%E2%80%99t-face-food-in-the-morning

The Benefits of Eating Breakfasthttps://www.webmd.com/diet/features/many-benefits-breakfast#3

Cell Phone Behavior in 2021: How Obsessed Are We?https://www.reviews.org/mobile/cell-phone-addiction/ /


Cortisol in Bloodhttps://www.healthlinkbc.ca/medical-tests/hw6227

Distinctioneffects of acute exercise and breaks in sitting on working memory and executive function in older adults: a three-arm, randomised cross-over trial to evaluate the effects of exercise with and without breaks in sitting on cognitionhttps://bjsm.bmj.com/content/54/13/776 

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