5 tips to start the day happy!!
Ok, so it may sound really simple, but have you ever thought about how you start your day? I mean, REALLY start your day...
The first few things you do in the morning set the tone and your mood for your day, so it's important to be selective and mindful about what you choose to do. You never know what surprises the day will hold, so it's important to at least get started on the right foot.
1. Don’t press the snooze button!
This is a pet peeve of mine. No amount of 'just 5 more minutes' of sleep will do you any good! I don't know about you, but I end up feeling groggy and slow after hitting the snooze button! Try it tomorrow morning; when your alarm goes off, resist the temptation to hit snooze, and instead turn your alarm off and take a nice deep inhale, a big stretch and start to blink your eyes open to get your body moving. You'll feel so much better! (This works every time for me, that is if my toddler hasn’t already woken me up hours before...)
2. Take a big stretch
Like I mentioned before, STRETCH. Take a big deep breath and enjoy the feeling of your soft bed and let your body wake up slowly. To get your mind moving, maybe have a little think about something you have to look forward to for the day- even if it's only that hot cup of coffee or tea or that delicious lunch you’re going to make. Take a moment to enjoy that feeling of anticipation!
3. Drink a pint of warm water
It's important to keep your body hydrated. Vinyasa yoga practitioners often you are told to swirl warm water around your mouth and spit it out and then proceed to drink the whole pint before you eat or drink anything else. This helps to rinse out the toxins from your mouth, flush your digestive system, and rehydrate your body. Your body has been pretty busy while you were sleeping, so reward it and replenish by treating it to some yummy water!
4. Do your 5 A's and 5 B's
Pattabhi Jois was an advocate of doing your MDR (minimum daily requirement) if you didn't have time to make it to an Ashtanga yoga class. The MDR 3 SuryaNamaskar A's and B's (sun salutations A and B), pranayama (breathing exercises), meditation, and savasana (corpse pose). This takes about 15 minutes to do, and is great for you to do when you're sick, injured, or can't get to a full practice. Larry Shultz also said that it was better to do this 6 times a week that it was to go all out one day per week. For most of us, fitting in a full yoga practice first thing is near impossible, but i promise you, once you’ve got a few Adho Mukasvanasana (downward facing dogs) and Uttanasanas (forward folds) under your belt your body will thank you.
5. Eat a good breakfast
There are mixed studies about if you should or shouldn't eat breakfast. It comes down to what works for you, and how you feel. For me, breakfast is important, and it's what helps me make wise food choices for the rest of the day. However, sometimes making time for it is hard. When I can, I make myself a bowl of oats with my favorite nut milk and some berries. This is great for reducing cholesterol, antioxidants, and keeping me fuller for longer.
However, sometimes I am in a rush to get out the door, and this is when I turn to my trusty blender for an amazing green smoothie. I start by adding a big handful of greens, usually spinach or kale - you want it at least half full with this vitamin and iron rich greenery. Then, whack a banana in for potassium, which if you haven’t slept that well will definitely help you out. Next, berries! OMG... I do love berries, blueberries in particular. These can be frozen or fresh. Add in a few spoonfuls of oats - these slow release carbohydrates are your best friend and will keep you full until lunchtime. If you want, you can add in a supplement or two. Here are some of the ones I use Naturya Spirulina, OMG Detox powder, Pulsin Soy protein powder, and finely milled seeds like these ones from Linwoods. Finally, whizz it all up with some coconut water and/or any other nut milk and it is a delicious breakfast on the go!
So there you are, the 5 things I strive to do every morning to start it off right and in a great mood! Do you have any tips that work for you? Let me know in the comments below :)
Go out and have a good day!!!