In my last post on 7 Habits I’ve been Practicing for Better Sleep, I detailed the daily habits I was incorporating into my evening routine. Now I’m going to share 5 ways to rock your morning routine that will start your day off on the right foot. These little changes provide incredible momentum for being productive, healthy, and happy.
Make your bed
Tim Ferris details this as his number one tip for starting the day. It takes but a few minutes, and there’s no need to be perfect, but it gives you the sense that you’ve accomplished at least one thing before tackling the rest of your to-do list. Studies have shown that people who make their beds get better sleep as well. Something about turning down the covers and sliding into a taut and freshly made bed induces comfort and facilitates sleep.
Coconut Oil Pulling
After I let the dog out, I put a spoonful of organic coconut oil in my mouth and swish it around for about 5 minutes. Don’t go longer than that because the toxins and bacteria can be reabsorbed. Occasionally I’ll add a drop of peppermint essential oil which freshens the breath and wakes me up.
While I’m swishing my coconut oil, I brew 2 tea bags with organic pu-ehr tea and a some Chaga Elixir. I add a bit of ginger and turmeric. I actually use my coffee pot for this brew (don’t use paper filters – they can prevent some of the beneficial compounds from coming through). Once it’s done, I spit out my coconut oil and pour myself a mug of goodness.
Prayer & Meditation
No woo woo new age type of stuff, I’m not emptying my mind, in fact, quite the opposite. I read my bible and then focus on one verse and think about it for a few minutes. I try to think of an area in my life that I need to repent of, then I pray and thank God for what I have. Gratitude does wonders for making the rest of the day seem easy, no matter what I may have going on.
Next, I write down what I need to do that day, and then pick the ONE thing that will make everything else easier. Or, the ONE thing that has to be done, no matter what. Rather than checking off a bunch of inconsequential to-do items, if I tackle the MUST do, then I feel like a burden has been lifted and it propels my productivity.
I’m boring and eat the same thing every morning. I think following the same routines and breakfasts each day preserve my decisions for situations that are more important. I have 6 egg whites with an egg yolk. I cook them up and add minced garlic, hot sauce, and pepper. I eat the eggs first because glucose levels are improved when you eat proteins and fats before carbs. Then I drink a big glass of water with organic apple cider vinegar (with the mother) mixed with some Ceylon cinnamon, ginger, and stevia. Then I have a bowl of oatmeal with a cup of berries mixed in with a bit of stevia and Ceylon cinnamon.
6 days a week I alternate between weights and some kind of full body power moves. I don’t do long cardio – my 23andme test revealed that I have sprinter/power muscles and I’m not going to waste my time with mind-numbing and ineffective long cardio sessions that won’t produce results for my body type. I’ll probably write a post soon detailing what I do, but I have 4 rules:
- Always warm up.
- Never spend more than 25 minutes total.
- Take one day off per week to rest.
- Keep it simple, get your muscles stimulated, stay flexible.
Three times per week, I hop into my infrared sauna for 20 minutes immediately following my weight workouts. Why? Saunas increase growth hormone, recovery, endurance, and strength. The minimum effective dose for noticeable results is 15 minutes post weights, 2x per week per studies. I don’t do saunas on my full body power workouts.
I have a new routine of alternating hot and cold showers. On the days I do sauna, I’ll hop into a cold shower and then turn it from hot to cold at various times when I’m in there. I read a study that showed people who were exposed to varying extreme temperatures had much better immunes systems, so I’m doing it. So far, I haven’t been sick this fall/winter at all. We’ll see.
I listen to podcasts while I’m doing most of these things. My husband bought me a pair of Bluetooth headphones so I can listen while I do what I need to do.
My favorite podcasts are:
- The Ben Greenfield Podcast
- The Tim Ferris Show
- SkyWatch TV
- Canary Cry Radio
- The Grammar Girl
- Side Hustle Nation
- 4th Watch with Justen Faull
- Online Marketing Made Easy with Amy Porterfield
- The Smart Passive Income
- The Sharpening Report
- Gilbert House Fellowship
I know – I’m a podcast junkie. I didn’t even list them all! I’ve actually been thinking about starting a podcast for several years. I’d love for some feedback on what you’d most like to hear about! I have so many interests that I could talk about for hours, but I’m not sure which direction I should go.
What about you? How do you optimize your morning routines? Share this post and comment with your best tips!