When your goal is to live a healthy life, your mornings can make or break your daily routine. If you start each morning with great actions, you’ll make consistent progress, build good habits, and reap the benefits. But if you make critical mistakes, you’ll spend the rest of your day trying to catch up and undo the damage. To help you make the best choices, we have five morning habits for a fitter, healthier body.
Your days just improved, because mornings don’t have to be so difficult. It’s not necessary to set your alarm for 5 a.m., run 10 miles, or meditate for an hour to improve your body. Heck, you don’t even need to make your bed! What you need are just a few simple and fast actions that will work wonders for your body and mind.
The very first thing you should do every morning is to grab some water and drink up. After all, it could be more than eight hours since you went to sleep and drank fluids. If you wake up feeling groggy, it could be a sign you’re slightly dehydrated.
Start your morning with a tall glass of water and rehydrate yourself. This will ensure that your metabolism, cell function, cognitive abilities, and overall physical abilities are at tip-top levels.
If you have a dog or cat, you may notice the first thing your furry friend does upon waking up in the morning is stretch. Your needs are no different. After all, you’ve likely been lying in one position for at least eight hours. Before tackling all the challenges a brand new day brings, getting your body ready is important.
It’s not necessary to do an hour-long workout, bike ride, or yoga session in order to get your body moving. These are all awesome if you are so inclined to do them, but just a few minutes of gentle stretching and easy calisthenics will work wonders. By doing so, you’ll loosen your joints, get your blood flowing, and your mind functioning. Even better, movement will get you into the habit of doing physical activity.
After you get up, it’s so healthy to open up your blinds and let the sunlight flood your home. Why? Sunlight can improve your mood and is vital to maintain a healthy circadian rhythm, which is your body’s sleep clock. Seeing the sunlight can help you get better Z’s at night and also help you to feel more energized during the day.
While strength training improves the quantity of your muscles, you still need to improve their quality. Foam rolling helps relax overly dense muscles, break up scar tissue, and release any muscle adhesions so your muscles and joints move freely. This can mean fewer aches and pains, less muscle soreness, and better flexibility and mobility, research says.
Invest in a good foam roller and spend a few minutes every morning on big muscle groups like your quadriceps, calves, hamstrings, glutes, lower back, upper back, and lats. You can also use a tennis or lacrosse ball for a pinpoint massage to release specific areas.
The last of these morning habits for a fitter, healthier body has to do with your diet. Eating the right foods for breakfast will fuel you with energy, help you achieve your fitness goals, and set a strong precedent for the rest of the day. Skip the sugary cereals or pastries, and give yourself a good dose of protein, healthy fats, and carbohydrates. A great, healthy example is to whip up two scrambled eggs with avocado, and veggies. Or enjoy some Greek yogurt with fresh fruits and a drizzle of honey.
If, however, you prefer to fast, that’s fine, too. If that’s your choice, just be sure to drink plenty of water to stay hydrated.
Anthony J. Yeung