For as long as I can remember I’ve been a morning person. I don’t really know how it happened. Was I born that way? Did something happen in my upbringing? Who knows? The fact remains I am at my best at the beginning of the day. They say the “early bird gets the worm,” and some of the most successful executives swear by their morning routines. I agree. I credit much of my success in life to embracing the sunrise. Here are some of my best tips to become a morning person and why they work so well.
- Don’t hit snooze. This is the biggest mistake of your morning. Once you hit snooze, it’s all over! You often can’t stop. What’s more, if you fall back asleep, you feel worse when that buzzer goes off again. When your alarm goes off, count to yourself, “3-2-1” and jump out of bed. Just do it! If you struggle with this, move your clock or phone far enough away that you have to physically get out of bed. By the way, if you have a bed partner, they will appreciate you not hitting snooze 10 times. Trust me on this!
- Have a morning routine. Identify something or more than one thing you accomplish every morning. Having a reason to get up in the morning and knowing the plan will help you engage with your new day. Make coffee, read the news, exercise, throw in a few loads of laundry…just pick something that you will do each and every day. You’ll be amazed how it jump-starts your productivity!
- Workout. I have been a morning workout person for years and one thing I’ve noticed is that the morning gym crowd is the most consistent. Personal trainers will tell you that, too. I think it’s because there is little that gets in the way of a morning workout. After work or school, things come up and you may get off track. But, what else is happening at 6 a.m.? My workout is the first thing I do every day, whether it’s resistance training, Peloton, or an outdoor walk. Getting moving helps wake me up and gets my digestive system going so I can eat a healthy breakfast. Having trouble getting into an exercise routine? Just go for a walk. Even better? Get a dog (or a human friend)!
- Plan your morning in the evening. This is probably my best tip. Fail to plan, plan to fail, I always say. The night before, I typically lay out my clothes, including my workout gear. I also prepare my workout supplements, pack my lunch, set my alarm, and review my calendar. This helps me get my head in the game so when I wake up, I can just go. The less I have to use my brain early in the morning and the more I can hardwire my routine, the more successful I am. When I first started getting up early to workout, I even slept in my workout clothes!
- Eat. It’s so important to eat something when you wake up. I hate breakfast. I’m often not hungry until I’ve been up a while. I do try to have something, though, whether it’s a cup of yogurt or a whey protein shake. Just something… and you can even grab and go, choosing a healthy Starbucks order or a protein bar from your pantry.
All these tips are from my own experience. After so many years, my routine is so set that if I try to change it, it’s difficult! In fact, I often wake before my alarm now. You CAN change your body clock and your approach to mornings. It just takes repetition and time. I think it’s well worth the effort to try.