From Becca Hamm, Summer Intern 2013
Every now and then, maybe sometimes more than we would like, we all need a little help to get motivated for the day. We’ve all heard the saying “The early bird gets the worm”, but are there really any advantages to getting a kick start to your day? Not only are there advantages, but a significant amount of scientific research supports the early riser routines, especially ones who incorporate exercise in the morning.
According to Dr. N.N. Khanna, Senior Interventional Cardiologist at Apollo Hospitals, due to the high secretion of catecholamines in the morning, which increase blood pressure and the likelihood of blood clotting, waking up early and working out can help reduce blood pressure, stress levels, and the risk of cardiac arrest and stoke. Dr. Sameer Srivastava, Associate Director of Non Invasive Cardiology, also states “People who work out in the morning are happy people, because morning workouts produce endorphins, which are stress busters”. It is also suggested that breathing exercises in the morning will help you stay relaxed and keep those stress levels down.
Not only has research found that earlier risers are more motivated and nicer to be around in the morning, they’re also happier, healthier, and more self-satisfied than others who tend to sleep in. Exercising may not always be an option in the morning, but here are a few tips to still help you get a jump start to your day! Pay attention to your five senses and become present as you awaken to enjoy yet another beautiful day!
The Moment You Wake Up: It starts from the second the alarm goes off. Instead of waking up to a constant beeping noise blaring in your ears, studies have found that a clock that gradually wakes you up with a softer tune or peaceful music, can help lower the heart rate and slowly wake you up.
Give Yourself a Pep Talk: Many of us dread the alarm clock in the morning because it reminds us of all the obligations we have for the day. Before you even get out of bed and start reminding yourself of all the things you have to do, rephrase it into what you get to do. Stay positive and look forward to what the day will bring!
Learn To Love The Sunshine: One of the most powerful things to force your body to awaken in the morning is the natural sunlight. Try to place your bed near a large window with thin blinds to slowly wake your body with the morning light. Take a few slow, deep breathes and be ready to conquer the day!
While You Get Ready: To help you get energized before you head out the door, use a citrus scent in a shampoo or soap, that has lemon, orange, or grapefruit. This will help being in touch with your senses and become more present.
Bring On The Protein: You already know what is going to be said next… “Breakfast is the most important meal of the day.” After sleeping all night, our metabolism and blood sugars are at its lowest, so be sure to fuel up your body! Think of a breakfast for champions meal and incorporate a protein along with colorful fruits, vegetables, and a whole grain into your morning.
Before Going To Bed: Have an hour before you go to bed be devoted to “unwind period”. Try to stay away from the electronics or another other obligations you might have for the next day to give your body a chance to slow down and enjoy a night of rest!