Brighten your Day - Health Tips to Start Your Day
We all have morning rituals—those little habits that help us rev up for the day. For me, it’s a cup of coffee, because no matter how hot the shower I’m not awake until I drink that first cup. As for morning workout routines, though, forget it. Mornings aren’t my thing. When 5:30 a.m. hits, I usually groan.
There are morning people who embrace the sunrise with great delight, and then there are the rest of us who would rather hit snooze a few dozen times. While I can give you dear readers a great list of exercises and fun cardio routines to rev up the a.m., I’m not going to be a hypocrite. If I’m not going to roll out of bed, throw on the exercise gear and get busy channeling my inner guru, can I really advise you all to do it? I think not.
Healthy routines to me are all about how I nourish my body. I exercise later, usually in the evening…or during a break in the day. I don’t even try to push my body during the morning. Well, unless getting the kids out of bed is considered an exercise routine, because my kids love their sleep and removing them from their happy beds is a feat of great persistence.
While exercise isn’t part of my morning, morning-phobes like me can embrace the early hours in a healthy way by focusing on a good diet and a relaxed state of mind. Because, let’s face it, mornings can be stressful, and stress isn’t a healthy way to begin the day.
Here are my secrets to making mornings a bit brighter…and healthier:
A Leisurely Shower and Prep Session.
Good health, to me, means taking time for my own needs—both mental and physical. The easiest time to allot for me is in the morning, while the kids are still sleeping. I always schedule at least 30 minutes (minimum) to shower, get dressed and do my make-up. I don’t care if other women feel great walking out unshowered and bare-faced. I don’t feel good. So I focus on what makes me feel happy and beautiful. I pick out an outfit, jump in the shower and fix my hair and makeup. Then I feel ready to head out and face the day. While you don’t have to put on makeup or style yourself, allow time to do the things that make you feel your best. If that means working out…do it. If it just means showering, then that’s great, too!
Breakfast: The Most Important Meal
You can’t face the day if your body is deprived of food. Eat breakfast, because it is the most important meal of the day. Breakfast is my time to sit and have a bit of quiet time. And every morning I typically eat the same thing: a meal bar and a piece of fruit. To-go meal bars are healthy, full of protein and convenient. So, yes, you can have breakfast! I’ve also been known to snag some fudge toaster pastries, too. And every Friday or Saturday (depending on when grocery day occurs), we have pastries or donuts…because some days you just have to indulge! If you don’t know what to eat, grab a quick tube of yogurt, a fruit and grain bar, toaster tarts or other handy items. For a healthy start, eat a protein bar, make a smoothie or heat up a bowl of microwaveable oats.
I always allow for time between my breakfast and when the kids wake up for the day. I like a few minutes of quiet time to read the news, eat my breakfast, wake up and just relax. Many women also like to use the quiet morning for a quick and revitalizing yoga routine. Make sure you allow a little down time to unwind and wake the body up gradually.
While I am probably one of the worst morning people, I have my own routine to get my body revved up for the day. Adopt a morning routine that helps your body adjust to the wake-up and gives you plenty of time to take care of you. Don’t rush your morning, and never begin the day with stress. Create a routine that ensures that every day begins with a good morning!