The way we feel the moment we wake gives us an insight into our physical and emotional health.
And the truth is, most of us wake up feeling groggy, queasy, tired (despite a full night’s sleep) and a bit achey. So after we’ve rolled out of bed, we head straight to the espresso maker for that much-needed energy shot.
But it doesn’t have to be this way! (And I’m a huge coffee lover so don’t worry, I’m not going to be a coffee Nazi about this…).
Here are TEN things you need to do (as well as keep reading my Ten Minute Tone posts) to help you wake up feeling refreshed and revitalised.
1: The way you feel in the morning depends on how you behave the night before… so give yourself a cut-off time of say 8pm (earlier if you can manage) for when you will no longer snack and drink, (sipping water is okay of course). Late night is often when we crave chocolates, alcohol and other baddies. But eating late at night means your digestive system will be working when you are sleeping – not only compromising the quality of your sleep, but putting extra stress on your digestive system. So have dinner, then be strict – and don’t reach for those late-night snacks
2: If you must have a hot drink before bed then stick with something soothing to your gut and relaxing such as chamomile tea. Hot chocolate is not only sugary, but stacked full of caffeine so it’s a definite no-no
3: Adopt good Sleep Hygiene… which basically means a clean routine around sleep. Aim to go to bed at a regular time. Know how many hours sleep you need – most of us need eight, so add on an extra hour for the inevitable faffing you’ll need to do (packing school bags, cleaning teeth etc…) and then go to bed NINE hours before you need to get up, so if you get up at 7am, your bed deadline is 10pm
4: Create a healthy and calm bedroom – remove all electronic devices, if you can open the window, for a free flow of fresh air, turn off all lights so your natural melatonin levels kick in and if you need to – use ear plugs.
5: We all know this, but it’s often hard to do – but don’t check Facebook before you go to bed… it can set your mind into overdrive and you want to feel well rested and calm as you drift off to sleep. So have a 9pm (or earlier) deadline for the electronics and gadgets… Kindles excepted… although personally I still love a good book… And of course there are all the lovely Ten Minute Tone relaxations which you can add into your routine… I especially recommend Soothe Yourself to Sleep… and you can also do the Relax and Unwind TMT routine.
6: Get the temperature right at night. Often we pile too many blankets over us and end up having a restless night as we try to kick off the doonas and soft toys. It may feel cosy to sleep in your onesie with twenty cushions around you, but do you really need it? Our body heats up and cools off through the night so you need to have the right kind of doona or sheet to keep you feeling warm, but not overheated. And while you’re at it check your pillow too – do you wake up with a headache or neck pain? chances are you may need a different pillow (ask your friendly physio or chiro about this).
7: Are you a grinder or a clencher? Many of us (particularly women) spend most of the night gnashing our molars… you can often tell if you are doing this by checking out your jaws…Open your mouth gently and begin to massage firmly into your jaw. Wash your hands and use your thumbs to gently massage your jaw muscle inside your mouth (between your bottom and top sets of teeth) you might be surprised at just how tender this muscle is… ask your dentist if you are worried as they can make up a splint to help protect your teeth. And do lots of massage.
8: Ok, nearly there… and now we’re into our morning stuff. Have you ever checked out your cat when she wakes up? She has a long, luxurious stretch… so do the same – it feels GREAT and after an entire night of being hunched into the corner of the bed you need to MOVE. And while we’re at it. Do the Wake up Ten Minute Tone routine. How good is that? It is the best way to start your day – and then you can feel virtuous from the moment you wake up 🙂
9: Instead of reaching for the coffee, have a glass of hot water with freshly squeezed lemon juice ( you can always have the coffee later!). This will kick start your digestion another great morning pick-me up is the shot above which is a tablespoon of Bragg’s Apple Cider Vinegar in lukewarm water. Yum!
10: Take a look at your daily diet, the medications you take (and when you take them), chances are you may be overdue a cleanse or a detox. If you are feeling low then see your doctor. When we wake can often reflect our true state of mind, so it is important to check in with yourself and when you wake up feeling healthy and happy your day often continues that way. And let me know how you go…!