Elevate Your A.M. - 5 Tips for a More Energized Morning

Smile AM

No matter if you're an early riser or have persistent fatigue, finding ways to boost energy can help. Here are a few habits that will do just that!

Even when getting eight hours of restful sleep every night, waking up can still be challenging. To boost energy in the mornings: 1. Prioritize sleep quality

1. Get a Good Night’s Sleep

Sleep is key to feeling revitalized when you wake up each day, so investing time and effort into getting quality restful slumber is one way to maintain energy throughout your day. Unfortunately, various things can hinder this goal (such as stress, caffeine and alcohol consumption). By eliminating or managing these influences through healthy strategies like meditation can help improve the quality of a restful slumber.

Focus on getting at least seven to eight hours of restful sleep each night, without going to bed too early. This will enable your body to enter deep sleep phase which is critical for energy recovery. To maximize quality restful slumber it is wise to avoid caffeine-containing products such as tea or energy drinks prior to sleeping as these may impede getting quality restful slumber.

If you find that you're waking up feeling lethargic, try setting a regular bedtime and wake-up schedule each night - this should help synchronize your internal clock with sunlight and shift your circadian rhythm according to experts.

Stepping outside for light exercise or even just a walk outdoors will do wonders to boost your energy level and refocus you for the day ahead. Light exercise such as this or even simply walking will stimulate melatonin production in your body and signal to your brain that it's time to awaken, leaving you more alert throughout your day and more prepared to sleep at night when returning home in the evening. Plus, engaging with family, friends, community and work in fun ways throughout your day will boost energy and help keep it sustainable over time!

2. Move Your Body

Morning is the ideal time for setting your blood pumping with movement. No need for an intense workout session right off the bat; even 10 or 15 minutes of stretching or light movement will give your muscles enough oomph to start their day strong!

Regular exercise helps increase serotonin, norepinephrine, and dopamine levels in your brain - improving mood while fighting stress and fatigue. Morning workouts increase these hormones while simultaneously decreasing cortisol production - leaving you feeling balanced and refreshed!

Integrating movement into your daily routine is vitally important, no matter your age or ability. If the term "workout" brings up unpleasant memories for you, consider alternative means of adding movement such as dancing to your favorite music, walking window shopping or taking your dog on longer walks - just make sure all movements you engage in are safe and within your current range of motion.

If you're new to morning exercise, it's essential that you ease into it gradually. Consider beginning by working out just one or two mornings each week at first and gradually working up towards what your desired frequency should be. Doing this will ensure that you stick with it long-term while reaping the long-term rewards. Involving a friend or family member who will keep each other accountable and motivated can also be extremely helpful in building long-term habits.

3. Drink Water

We've all heard the advice that drinking water first thing in the morning can help hydrate our bodies, but does this actually make an impactful statement about its efficacy?

Water is one of the most vital beverages for overall health, yet many struggle to drink enough of it. Experts agree that starting your day right with a glass of water helps restore hydration levels in your body.

Water can help energize you without the need for caffeine. While caffeine may make you feel awake temporarily, over time it dehydrates you leaving you tired and sluggish - drinking water first thing can keep you hydrated throughout the day and keep you more energized without experiencing that typical coffee crash.

Drinking water not only hydrates you, but can help with weight loss, lower the risk of heart disease and cancer, improve skin complexion and increase energy levels - making it the ideal beverage to add into your morning routine!

Alternatively, try adding citrus fruits, berries, apples and cinnamon as well as cucumbers, mint or ginger into your water bottle to spice things up and enhance its taste and health benefits. These additions offer tasty yet healthy ways to enhance the experience of drinking plain water!

If you are having difficulty staying hydrated throughout the day, setting reminders may help. Be it via your phone, smart speaker or app - any reminder can encourage more water intake and establish better hydration habits.

4. Eat a Healthy Breakfast

Eating a nutritious breakfast is vital for getting you through the day feeling energized. Research suggests that those who regularly take in this breakfast-rich meal tend to experience higher energy levels throughout their day and may outperform those who skip this meal (1). (2)

Breakfast foods that provide an ideal balance of complex carbs, protein and heart-healthy fats will keep you energized through your morning and afternoon activities. A nutritious breakfast should include foods rich in nutrients like whole grains, fruits and vegetables along with protein and fiber for maximum effectiveness.

Carbohydrates are the body's main fuel, but not all carbohydrates are created equal. Complex carbs like those found in fruits and whole grains break down more slowly into energy than simple ones; making these a better option for breakfast (3). Protein-rich foods, like eggs, yogurt, nut butters, and low-fat cheeses can also provide an energizing breakfast; eggs contain an abundance of choline which aids brain function and memory (4).

Coffee can also help energise breakfast, thanks to its stimulating effects of caffeine (5). Just be sure to read labels carefully and consume no more than 400 milligrams per day of caffeine!

Smoothies and smoothie bowls make an energy-boosting breakfast on the go, and can provide additional fiber, nutrients, and energy boost. Valleywise offers nutritional services at each of its local health centers if additional assistance is required - contact us now to find out more or schedule an appointment! (1) National Institute of Mental Health "Making Breakfast Count," https://nimh.gov, April 19 2018.

5. Exercise

There are numerous reasons to make exercise part of a daily regiment--and exercising first thing in the morning is ideal. Not only will it make sticking to your workout regimen easier, but research suggests it may also help reset your circadian rhythm so you fall asleep more easily at night.

Once completed, exercising early in the day provides you with a sense of accomplishment before work or other obligations begin to loom large. Expert productivity strategist Ellen Goodwin suggests that being more likely to follow through with healthy choices like eating healthily throughout your day is made more likely by feeling you have already accomplished something worthwhile at the start of each day.

Don't stress if getting up early is becoming challenging: there are still ways you can fit a workout into your busy morning routine! Try quick low-impact workouts like jumping jacks or leg lifts that target legs and core, resistance bands offer additional challenge while targeting more muscles, or switch up resistance band sets based on fitness level; finding something suitable should not be an obstacle!

Wickham recommends performing the "good morning" exercise as an effective lower-back strengthener, since its functional movement pattern (that mimics movements done during daily tasks such as laundry or shoe tying) increases your odds of not injuring yourself when engaging in everyday tasks such as put away laundry or tie shoes. "Having a strong and stable lower back means it will take much longer to sustain an injury doing everyday tasks," according to him.


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