A good morning routine ensures a great start to the day and snow balls into the rest of the day.
Have a good morning = have a good day
For most, the morning is just a haze that we struggle to get through… Hit the snooze a couple of times, stumble out of bed, take a hot shower, brew up some coffee, eat a donut or muffin or other crap, watch the news….
No productivity, no benefit or carryover to your sport performance or health, no impact, no rhyme or reason. Just trying to struggle through.
Instead, doing these 5 things each morning will put yourself in a position to have a positive impact on your performance, energy, focus, and health throughout the day.
1. Drink A 2-3 Glasses of Water
Think about this for a second, you sleep for 6-10 hours a night, without a drop of water. All the while, you are perspiring and losing body fluids - It's a no brainer to replenish these lost fluids ASAP.
Getting these fluids replenished right away in the morning is important for balancing your lymphatic system, regulating many of your bodies functions, increasing metabolism, and increasing production of different cellular functions.
So within 20-minutes of waking, shoot for 2-3 glasses of cold H2O.
2. Take a Cold Shower
Cold showers can have an incredible effect on the body and it reaches the depths of the nervous system, cardiovascular system, and pulmonary system. Those who take regular cold showers report feeling of being more active, energetic, and brisk. Regular cold showers can even fight depression and might even be more effective than prescription antidepressants (3).
This is something I've started doing for the past 2-weeks and I can tell you it will be something I continue forever. It's helps me feel awake, refreshed, more energetic, and just leaves me feeling better.
Start with warm water and slowly drop the temperature until it's cold to the touch. Stay under the cold stream for just two to three minutes and you'll be set.
3. Eat Protein
Consuming protein in the morning can increase satiety and be an effective strategy to improve appetite control and reduced intake of high-fat and high-sugar evening snacks (1,2).
It has also been shown to be more effective at enhancing body composition and stimulating protein synthesis than a high carb breakfast. Again, your under very little to no protein synthesis during the 6-10 hours you're asleep - consuming amino acids in the morning can help to repair and stimulate the rebuilding of muscular tissues better than a high carb breakfast.
Best options include EGGS, Greek yogurt, ham, turkey, sausage, and/or a protein shake.
4. Wake Up At The Same Time
Our bodies are a system of routine - we love routines. Waking at the same time helps your body get into a routine and better prepare your body for more productive awake hours and better sleeping hours.
A key routine of our body is circadian rhythm. Think of circadian rhythm as a fancy term to describe your body clock. It’s a biological process and going to bed and waking up at the same time every day will help stabilize your circadian rhythm. As a result, you should naturally become tired at the same time every night and awake more smoothly, alertly, and energetic.
A good reference is to be in bed between 9:30-10:30pm and awake between 5:30-7:00am. This ensures you get good quantity of sleep but also ensures you're resting and rising near the setting and rising of the sun - which is another key contributor to a solid circadian rhythm.
5. Make A To-Do List
Write down 1-2 KEY things you want to accomplish during that day and set out to accomplish those things. This may be tasks or errands, but I encourage you to make a list of things that PROGRESS towards a bigger goal and outcome. What are 1-2 things you can do to make each day better or one step closer to a higher goal? What are 1-2 things that will make the lives of people around you better? How can you enhance your presence and make an impact?
It's a lot easier to viscously attack 1-2 goals rather than a laundry list to-do lists. So pick, 1-2 major things you want to tackle so when you lay your head to rest, you feel accomplished - and tackle those things with vigor!
Go Get 'Em!
1. Leidy, H. J., & Racki, E. M. (2010). The addition of a protein-rich breakfast and its effects on acute appetite control and food intake in ‘breakfast-skipping’adolescents. International journal of obesity, 34(7), 1125-1133.
2. Leidy, H. J., Ortinau, L. C., Douglas, S. M., & Hoertel, H. A. (2013). Beneficial effects of a higher-protein breakfast on the appetitive, hormonal, and neural signals controlling energy intake regulation in overweight/obese,“breakfast-skipping,” late-adolescent girls. The American journal of clinical nutrition, 97(4), 677-688.
3. Shevchuk, N. A. (2008). Adapted cold shower as a potential treatment for depression. Medical hypotheses, 70(5), 995-1001.