“We first make our habits, then our habits make us.” – John Dryden
As you know, we are in constant pursuit of optimizing every area of health and performance. Our goal is to pass along the lessons learned (what actually works) from all of the experimenting, refining, and implementing to help you optimize your life.
If there is one thing we have figured out: utilize the power of habits and routines to their full potential.
After years of constant refinement, here are a few practices we employ in the weeee morning hours to WIN THE DAY! Now it’s your turn.
*Disclaimer: This is an ideal Too Fit morning. You do not have to implement every single one of these strategies on a daily basis, nor do we. Life is a professional schedule screwer-upper. Choose the few that best fit your lifestyle and ingrain them into your morning routine. Welcome to the new you.
Step 1. Hydrate
1 tbs of Apple Cider Vinegar mixed with 12 oz of water.
Drink upon waking to balance your stomach pH levels, detox your liver, and rehydrate after a long night’s sleep.
See the footnotes section to take your hydration game next level.
Step 2. Move
Study after study reveals the benefits of exercising in the morning hours. However, that’s not what we’re talking about here. Our goal is to wake your body through physical movement. All that means is raising the heart rate and activating your muscles.
Awaken your physical state, and the rest will follow.
Our choice of movement: 50 burpees.
Yes, you read that correctly. I promise it is not as bad as it sounds. This is not done for time, but for wakefulness’ sake.
Performing 50 burpees within the first 20 minutes of your morning propels your blood through your circulatory system, activates your muscles, lubes your joints, and primes your mind for the day ahead. It’s also just enough of a stressor to raise your heart rate and initiate your respiratory system. That is our only goal at this point in time.
#50at5 if you dare to join the 50 Burpees at 5:00 AM Club.
Other options include a max set of push ups, Tabata air squats, a light jog, or even a brisk walk.
Step 3. Yoga/Stretch
Once your heart rate has been raised, your muscle bellies should be primed and ready for a good stretch. Head out on the back patio to ensure your circadian rhythm is in tune and go through a simple 5-minute flow. Poses to hit include the sun salutation, warrior 1, warrior 2, crow pose, and half moon (each way).
If you suffer from back pain in the morning, check out this simple stretching routine to relieve that pressure in the AM.
Step 4. Bulletproof Coffee
1 cup of Bulletproof Coffee (1 tbsp of grass-fed butter or ghee, mixed with 1 tbsp of coconut oil or MCT oil).
Sip on this high-fat, delicious concoction throughout your morning routine to GET LIT like a Christmas tree and rev that metabolism throughout your morning.
For more on Bulletproof coffee see the footnotes.
Step 5. Read
Now that your body is ready to tackle the day, ease into the rocker outside or the recliner by the fire on a cold day, with your fresh cup of Bulletproof in hand. It’s time to wake the mind.
Your mind is always craving information, so the easiest way to get it firing is to feed it! Spend the next 20 minutes diving into that book that you’ve picked up and put down for the last two years.
If we may be so bold to make a few suggestions…
Business: The E-Myth by Michael Gerber
Life Improvement: The Power of Habit by Charles Duhig
Spirituality: Prodigal God by Timothy Keller
Motivation: Fearless by Eric Blehm
Step 6. Write
Top that off with a quick journal entry to cement your thoughts, goals, and fixate your mind on what you need to accomplish today.
Step 7. Meditate
Lastly, finish with 5-10 minutes of mindfulness or meditation practice. We find this helps us prioritize our day, work through and anticipate problems, and relieve any lingering anxiety.
Consider this the “save” button on your morning routine that carries this morning momentum throughout the day!
Still not sure about this whole meditation thing? View our starter’s guide HERE.
Step 8. Execute
You now have all the tools needed to win the day. Now go out and do it.
Up Your Morning Drink with The Too Fit Margarita:
– 1 tbsp of Apple Cider Vinegar
– 1 freshly squeezed lime or lemon slice
– 12 oz of sparkling mineral water (Topo Chico or Pellegrino)
– Top it off with a little salt and ENJOY!
A Little More on Bulletproof Coffee
– Learn how to make your own Homemade Ghee HERE
– Add a scoop of Vital Proteins Collagen Peptides for readily available protein. This makes your cup of joe a complete meal, for which your skin, hair, nails, and joints will thank you!
Cold exposure has numerous applications as well as benefits. The latter includes strengthening your immune system, increasing mental alertness, burning fat, decreasing recovery times, and I actually believe it builds resilience and mental strength. It can be accomplished through cold showers, ice baths, cold plunges, or even time spent in cold weather.
If implementing during your morning routine, follow stretching and yoga by a cold a shower when your body temperature has been raised. This could also be the last step in your routine before starting your day.
Before getting started, read our step-by-step guide on how to implement and build resilience with cold exposure.
Tips to Wake Up Early
It all starts the night before….
- Remove all items from your room not conducive to sleeping (i.e. your tv, computer, office work, food, cups, etc.)
- Black out your room as much as possible, including all light from electronics.
- No cell phone use is allowed in or near your bed. If you rely on phone’s alarm to wake you, place it on your dresser across the room which will force you out of bed to turn it off.
- Make full use of blue-light blockers for your phone, computer, and TV (glasses).
- Avoid all television and screens within an hour of bedtime and read for 20-30 minutes before calling it a night.
- Turn your light on first thing when you wake. By implementing this step, you are far less likely to return to bed after having to turn off your alarm and your light.
- Practice your waking routine a couple times every day for a week. By reinforcing this habit loop, you will automatically begin your routine every time you hear your cue, the alarm.
…More coming on this topic soon!