6 Things To Do Before 8am
Did you know that the time you get up in the morning and the activity you undertake directly after you get up, can have a profound effective on your mental and physical health and your day in general? It may not seem appealing to get up at the crack of dawn, but if there are certain things you have been struggling with, getting up early may actually enable you to alleviate some of these struggles.
Getting up early actually gives you more time to yourself while everyone is still asleep. If like me you have young children, then time to yourself can actually be a bit of a myth. Getting up early before the household is awake, before people are bustling outside and before you dive in to your different devices can actually be a real game changer in giving you a fantastic start to your day. So with all that being said, here are 6 things I think you should get into the habit of doing before 8am to give you a great start to the day.
**Disclaimer: I am not a health care professional. All my posts are based on personal experience, preference and things I have learnt from reading and researching. If you are struggling with your mental health and well-being please consult a qualified professional**
While we sleep our body and muscles are resting. In order to function fully it’s important to encourage good blood flow throughout your body and one of the ways this can be achieved is through stretching. Stretching first thing after you wake up will encourage your body to perform better in your daily activities. Daily early morning stretching can also help to prevent pain, increases your flexibility and can also help to provide you with more energy as movement helps to stimulate the brain through increased blood flow. It can also help to improve your concentration; not bad for a few minutes of stretching each morning!
- Drink Lemon Water
Drinking lemon water at the beginning of the day is a great way to start your day. The juice of half a lemon can provide you with a good dose of vitamin C. Lemon water can also help to aid in your digestion as the acid helps to break down food. Most of us don’t drink enough water throughout the day which can lead to dehydration; starting the day with lemon water can help to set good hydration habits that will be followed throughout the day. Drinking lemon water can also help to prevent kidney stones, give you a boost of potassium and act as an antioxidant preventing cell damage from oxidation. For me I also love the soothing feeling of having a hot drink in the morning; there is something incredibly calming about it, so I also find that is a great way to start the day.
Journaling as part of your morning routine is a great way to start your day. By journaling in the morning, you can ensure that you start the day on a positive note. Journaling helps you to be reflective and thankful while preparing yourself mentally for any challenges you may face that day. It’s a great way to gage exactly how you are feeling and develop your emotional intelligence while setting mini goals for the day. Journaling is also a great way to improve your focus and productivity for the day because you are starting the day intentionally which sets the premise for the rest of the day. So if you are not already journaling in the morning, now is a great time to start that habit.
As a Christian I find prayer in the morning a fantastic way to set me up for the day ahead. There is something about speaking to my creator in the stillness of the morning that cannot be matched and it gives me time talk and listen to God. If you are not a person of faith you can use this time to reflect on some positive quotes or mantras, or listen to a motivational podcast. Whichever you choose will greatly benefit your start to the day as you prepare spiritually and mentally for what is to come in the day ahead.
There are innumerable benefits to regular exercise and working out in the morning also carries added benefits to your exercise routine. Working out before 8am means that you will be prone to fewer distractions as most people will still be sleep and there will be reduced noise around you, giving you more time to focus on your exercise routine.
Exercises early in the morning can also help with your overall energy throughout the day and increase your alertness. It can also help to encourage you to make healthier food choice throughout the day. I remember getting up at 5am in my 20s (I hope to get back there soon!) to go for a jog and stretch; once I had exercised in the morning I naturally wanted to eat more healthy throughout the day to compliment the exercise I was doing in the mornings. I would advise you to choose the right routine for you but aim to have a mixture of things in that routine. Some cardio, some resistance training, stretching and also some things for fun (like an exercise dance routine). Start the day right with some great exercise.
- Have A Shower
Now this one may seem like a ‘duh’ moment but you may be surprised to learn that there are quite a few people who do not wash in the mornings. I remember back in my Uni days, being in a lecture sitting in front of 3 students chatting while we were waiting for the lecture to start. I clearly remember the conversation because it really surprised me; one of the girls said to the other 2 ‘I don’t know how anyone can shower in the morning. I just can’t be asked, I’m way too tired to shower then’.
Now I do remember reading somewhere that from a medical standpoint it is not necessary to shower every day, however there are definitely benefits to showering every day and benefits to showing early in the morning. Firstly there is the obvious reason pertaining to personal hygiene but aside from that having a shower in the morning can help to increase your blood circulation, remove toxins, decrease stress and can increase immunity. A cool shower in the morning can also help to regulate the natural oils in the skin so there’s a beauty benefit to showing in the morning as well. I personally feel refreshed and ready to face the day after my morning shower so I would definitely recommend showering before 8am to set you up for the day.
So there you have it, 6 simple things to do before 8am which will make a big difference to your day. I really do believe if you start the day on the right note, it sets you in good stead for whatever the rest of the day has to throw at you. Let me now what you think of my suggestions below and please feel free to add anything that your normally do before 8am that sets you up for your day.
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