If mornings typically make you feel groggy and have you reaching for the snooze button a million times, then you might want to consider adopting a new, simple morning routine that will actually give you energy in the a.m.
It’s not really a huge surprise that we feel depleted when we wake up. We work, we study, we organize, we plan, and we run around, so by bedtime, we’re ready to crash. Then, the next morning our bodies are basically in starvation mode (because we haven’t eaten for about eight hours) and we have to push ourselves to wake up and get moving so we can do it alllll over again.
The good news is that it’s definitely possible to wake up with tons more energy. If you’re looking to switch things up this spring — it is the season for fresh beginnings — here are five simple, healthy morning routines that will give you the energy you need to give your mornings a jump-start.
1. Have More “Me” Time
According to Karena Dawn and Katrina Scott, the BFF trainers behind Tone It Up, “The earlier you wake up, the more time you have to devote to yourself. The morning can be your time — without work or family life creeping in quite yet. We like to set aside some time to meditate, journal, and set our intentions for the day before we do our Booty Call (a 30-minute morning workout) and head into the office.”
For example, Karena likes to read from an inspirational or spiritual book to help her stay centered in the morning, then she’s able to reflect and set her intentions for the day.
Dr. Uma Naidoo, director of nutritional and lifestyle psychiatry at Massachusetts General Hospital, agrees. “Taking a moment when you open your eyes to focus on mindfulness, perhaps setting a positive intention for the day, can be very helpful in making one feel energized,” she says.
2. Salute the Sun
Even if you’re not a yogi, Dr. Naidoo recommends doing “an easy version of yoga’s Sun Salutation [as] a great way to get moving every morning and [center] yourself mentally.”
The Sun Salutation is a series of postures that warms, strengthens, and aligns the entire body, and serves as an all-purpose yoga tool.
“The mental benefit [of the Sun Salutation] is that you feel more prepared to handle the day ahead. It could be the full yoga exercise or a version that you are comfortable doing.”
Not sure where to begin? YouTube has a number of videos for both beginners and advanced students to help get you started.
3. Drink Up!
“Having a cold glass of water helps to reduce any overnight dehydration and creates energy as it gets your metabolism in balance,” says Dr. Naidoo.
Karena and Katrina agree, and suggest keeping a big water bottle on your bedside table so it’s the first thing you drink as soon as you rise.
The duo also like to sip a cup of coffee to help rev up in the morning. “Java gives you an instant buzz and water keeps you energized and refreshed all day. Bonus perk: they both get your metabolism going!”
Dr. Naidoo adds that coffee includes antioxidants and anti-inflammatory properties, and it can help boost your mood and get your mojo working — even at the crack of dawn.
Low on time? Karena and Katrina like to make iced coffee brews in advance and freeze almond milk ice cubes on meal-prep Sundays so that they’re ready to go — no excuses.
4. Eat an Energizing Breakfast
Don’t skip your breakfast. A nutritious breakfast, like chia pudding, is the perfect pick-me-up in the morning.
“Chia seeds can be added to a smoothie for extra protein, energy, [and] fiber, and they’re rich in brain-boosting omega 3s,” says Dr. Naidoo. “However, an even more delicious option is to add light coconut milk to chia seeds. Add honey to taste. Mix together, pour into small mason jars and leave overnight in the fridge. These form soft puddings by the morning, just add berries, which add a boost of antioxidants, and enjoy!”
Want to create more peace in your morning to get your energy up? Instead of downing your brekkie, mindfully chew it.
5. Listen to Some Solid Jams
We all have that song. The one that instantly lifts our spirits and gets us in our ZONE. Which is why you might want to consider listening to music, like Katrina and Karena do, as you get ready for the day.
“Make a wake-up playlist of your fave tunes to pump you up,” they say. Need an extra pep in your step? The duo also recommends jamming to your playlist as you go for a quick walk. Another idea? Taking a minute to have a quick dance break in your bedroom. It’ll get your body moving and your energy up, up, up.
These easy rituals don’t have to be super long. Five minutes is all it takes to get your energy up for the whole day ahead. Choose one (or more!) of these healthy morning routines to try this spring, and you’ll see your mornings transformed.