It Only Takes 5 Minutes to Become a Morning Person
When you hear people casually say, “Oh, I’m a morning person,” you generally look at them with newfound respect and utter, shocked disbelief.
How is it possible to function in the morning? While you’re still trying to blink the sleep from your eyes and free yourself from that wonderful cage that is your bed, those ‘morning people’ are getting things done.
They have absolutely no business being up and moving that early. Especially without a double shot of espresso coursing through their veins.
But, it might surprise you to hear this, it is not difficult to become a ‘morning person.’ And the benefits are invaluable. One of the greatest benefits to becoming a morning person is that it involves a shift in mentality.
Often, (speaking from personal experience) if you put it in your mind that you will be waking up early the next morning, you will also create a mandate to go to sleep earlier.
So, even though you might be waking up earlier, you are still likely getting at the very least, the same amount of sleep, although you might even be getting more.
Another benefit is a strong feeling of absolute productivity. Accomplishing things before your day really starts is one of the greatest feelings in the world.
It gives you a great sense of self accomplishment, a concept of your own strength that is grounded in reality, and the ability to simply do more with the time you are given.
I said it wasn’t hard to become a morning person. And, even though you may not believe me yet, I fully stand by it.
There are a few things that you can incorporate into your mornings that will cause your body and your mind to undergo a change, forcing you to function well even before the sun rises.
#1 Be a Goal Setter
Much of your success in the morning is dependent on your success at night. This involves a few things. One of the biggest aspects is obviously going to sleep at a reasonable time.
This means doing your utmost to get at least 7 hours of sleep. If you are consistently clocking in sleep-times of much lower than this magical number of 7 hours, you are not creating an environment for your mind or your body to flourish.
Sleep promotes healing, mental health, memory, reductions in stress, as well as muscle growth, in addition to improving your body’s ability to fight infection.
But getting enough sleep alone won’t make you into a morning person. You also have to consciously shift your mentality.
When you lie down in bed, shut your lights off, and close your eyes, run through a mental list of all the things you want to accomplish. These goals can be related to fitness, work, passions, hobbies, etc. etc.
Anything you want to get done, add it to the list. Firm this list. If you’re feeling really wild, write this list down. I know for me, being able to cross things off a list is a great feeling. But even if you keep the list etched on the inside of your skull, that works too.
Just make sure to set yourself up so you have a set series of things to achieve when you roll yourself out of bed the next morning.
#2 Move the Alarm
I, like most people, like having my alarm right next to my bed. It’s close, which means I can turn it off nice and quick.
The downside to that, as I’m sure many of you have experienced, is that often, when you turn off your alarm, you fall right back into those welcoming arms of sleep.
I know this is going to sound utterly ludicrous, but hear me out. If you move your alarm across the room, your chances of waking up immediately the next morning soar.
Because, in order to end that annoying shrieking, you have to actually get out of bed. And once you’re out of bed, you’re golden.
#3 Brush Your Teeth and Drink a Glass of Water
Three minutes, max. The first thing you should do after you turn off that dreaded alarm is to brush your teeth. Not only does this help to establish a routine, it also clears out the bacteria that has been growing in your mouth overnight.
While you’re here, take a handful of water (freezing cold water) and splash it on your face. This will really help wake you up.
And, after you’re done, drink a full glass of water. This helps to re-energize your body, as fatigue often comes as a result of dehydration. And mild dehydration can often come after a night’s sleep (you can’t hydrate while you’re unconscious).
Additionally, that glass of water gets your metabolism working.
#4 Grab a Banana and throw on Your Running Shoes
The banana is to make sure you’ve got enough fuel for your morning workout. Yes, a big part of an early morning is physical activity.
You might want to make a beeline straight for the shower, but you’ll feel so much better if you go for a quick run first. Not only will it boost your feelings of productivity, going for a run in the morning (or doing any type of exercise) will definitely and completely wake you up and prime you for the day.
I prefer morning runs; there is something magical about the chilled peace of an early morning, watching the sun rise, pounding through the streets with your music blasting in your head, living for a moment in nature.
Plus, these workouts can help you get closer towards accomplishing your fitness goals. If you want to bring down your mile time, want to lose weight, or are training for a race, there’s nothing better than a 1-3 mile daily run.
#5 Yoga, Breathing, Meditation
I love yoga. It is important for a few reasons – the stretching aspect keeps your limbs loose which prevents injury. This is especially important if you are a runner or a cyclist – these types of athletes usually have very tight hamstrings which is just asking for a horrible injury.
Additionally, yoga gets the blood pumping, and will chase those final traces of exhaustion from your body.
Another aspect of yoga is breathing and meditation. Often, breathing can be your meditation – meditation can be whatever you need it to be.
For me, meditation is just spending a few moments focusing on my breath, living in utter thoughtlessness, which provides a fantastic and refreshing start to the morning. And after this, you get to take a nice warm shower.
It’s not complicated to become a ‘morning’ person. It just takes a little bit of focus and grit. But it is definitely doable. If you can follow these five tips for just a few days, you’ll find that you are becoming a ‘morning’ person already.
And you will start to feel good, I promise.
I’m a personal trainer based in Denver (Matrix Gym) and a true fitness nerd. If I’m not training clients or working out at my home gym, I’m probably skiing, cycling or hiking with my dog Rufus.