You may or may not already know this, but for the last six months I’ve been working on becoming a morning person.
Yes, I can almost hear all of you who know me well laughing yourselves silly.
You see, I’m a girl who loves her sleep-ins. Flashback to the beginning of the year it was rare to see me out of bed before 10am on a Saturday. Unsurprisingly, the switch has been a hard and often grumpy journey.
However, my mentality started to change when I packed my bags and moved to Sydney’s Northern Beaches. My beautiful flatmate (who is currently writing an exciting guest post for The Whole Life) encouraged me to join a boot camp with her on my first morning in Queenscliff.
Looking back, this was a big jump considering it was the middle of winter. While it took a little getting used to at first (can you say 5.30am starts while it’s dark and 5 degrees outside), slowly but surely I got used to waking up before the sun.
After a couple weeks of activity, I quickly became addicted to the high of exercise early in the morning as the time I was committing to boot camp became an investment in my own wellbeing – the endorphins probably helped too.
Once I was in a steady routine of working out I learnt something which I hope will stick with me for life. We (humans) need to exercise and dedicate time in the day to ourselves. It’s like death and taxes – you can not avoid it, and if you do, you’ll you end up in more trouble than you started with. The human body was built to move and with many of us stuck behind a desk for up to 10 hours a day, we’re doing ourselves more damage than good.
Think about it – healthy movement plays an important role in the management and avoidance of most illnesses. One of the first things any doctor, nutritionist or naturopath will ask you when you look into curing an underlying illness is how much exercise do you do…
Having been out of the exercise game for four weeks as my surgery has required me to rest, I’m itching to get back to it. Yesterday was my first session back with my beloved gang of exercise buddies.
For me, moving my body early is my key to becoming a morning person.
But what about you… how do you become a morning person?
Whether it’s early morning exercise, or simply the desire to get more out of your day, I’ve believe you have to learn to love what pre-dawn offers you.
It could be the peace and quiet of no one else being around, the uninterrupted ‘me time’, seeing the sunrise, taking time to do some positive affirmations or simply 10 minutes to stretch and start your day with intention and in a positive state of mind.
When I do this, my day instantly starts on a sweeter note and I’m pretty sure the sun shines a little brighter as well! 😉
To help you find that ‘me time’ and maybe even claw yourself out of bed that little bit earlier, below are my tips to get you started.
Of course, there are still many days when I am still a scary person if woken up too early, but like everyone, I’m a work in progress. However, I do know that I’m a much better ‘morning person’ now that I enjoy and find purpose in the wee hours of the day.
- Find an early morning buddy – when you train or do yoga with a friend you feel a sense responsibility to them, and them to you.
- Set a routine – plan when you’re going to be waking up early so that you can build a routine. Once you have a routine in play, your body-clock will quickly adapt.
- Find a purpose in getting up early – whether it’s exercise, time to write, photograph or simply stretch.
- If you’re going to go somewhere, pack the night before – prepare so that you can get up, get dressed and go. That means all food, clothes, technology etc. need to be packed and ready.
- Learn to love the quiet that early morning offers you
- Don’t feel embarrassed to take ‘me time’ – sometimes I feel like my neighbours or boyfriend (sorry babe) are looking at me strangely when I step out on our balcony and stretch. I’ve learnt that I have to let it go and just enjoy the moment.
- Feel inspired by the other early morning risers in your area – they’re up making the most of their day – why shouldn’t you do the same?
- Find a place that makes you smile – I’m so fortunate to have made friends that I adore in my early morning training group. Training with them makes the process much enjoyable as we’re achieving milestones together and having fun.
- Don’t beat yourself up if you fail sometimes – waking up early is hard enough. Pick yourself up and try again the next day.
- Start waking up early when you don’t have to – get your day started early on the weekends by going out for breakfast or taking your furkid for a walk.
- Go to bed earlier – simple but important.
- Wake up to natural light
- Don’t eat sugar or caffeine late in the day – or at all if you can avoid it.
- Always have something to look forward to
- Find new and exciting sources of motivation
I’d love to hear what you do to get yourself moving in the morning?