The Early Bird Gets the Worm

By: Jared Behrens, General Manager

I am a big believer in morning routines.  Having an easily replicated morning routine gets you ready for the day, and gives you a first step in the right direction.  These routines are useful if you are a student, a blue collar worker, if you have an office job, or if you are a stay at home parent.  Setting time aside first thing in the morning to get your day and life in order pays exponential dividends throughout the day.  Here is a quick glimpse into my morning routine.  Admittedly, it is a little intense and possibly overboard, but it is what helps me attack the day.

9:00 pm – My morning routine actually starts the night before.  I know that my body needs a minimum of 7 hours of sleep to function correctly, so setting a time to wind down is imperative.  At 9pm, my phone alerts me that it is time to get ready for bed.  My objective is to finish my day at this point, and begin to prepare for sleep.  I find that non-caffeinated relaxing tea such as chamomile or an herbal blend help signal my body to prepare for bed.  This is also when I do my reading.  For one reason or another, once I begin reading, I struggle to keep my eyes open.  I get comfortable, begin to relax, read, and I am asleep by 10pm at the latest.

5:00 am – My alarm sounds and it is time to get out of bed!  After getting out of bed and getting dressed, I head downstairs for a healthy breakfast.  For the past several months, I have been enjoying kale smoothies.  I put loads of fresh greens and vegetables in my smoothie that give me energy throughout the day, and start my day with a blast of micronutrients!  Once the smoothie is done, dog has been fed and let out, it is off to the gym.

6:00 am – I arrive at the gym.  My workout will consist of a number of different things I may be interested in at the time.  I will do strength training, yoga, running, or whatever else interests me.  What you are doing is not important, the important thing is that you are doing something. 

7:00 am – My workout is complete, and it is time to prepare for the workday.  After working out, I am a big fan of spending time stretching, and spending time in a steam room or a sauna.  It gives time for your body to cool down from a workout and prepare you for the transition to beginning your day.  Lastly, I take a COLD shower!  I know it sounds crazy, but there is nothing like a cold shower to make you know you are alive!  An added benefit is that after taking a cold shower, anything seems easy.  There is nothing your day will throw at you that will be more difficult than stepping into freezing cold water early in the morning.

7:45 am – I have found that I perform at a much higher level when making meditation and journaling a regular practice.  Even just 10 minutes of mindfulness, and 5 minutes putting thoughts to paper help clear my head and give me a positive start to my morning.  This has been the easiest for me to dismiss out of my routine, but I find is extremely valuable.  The benefits pay dividends throughout the day.

8:00 am – I arrive at my office and being my day.  One of the things I love the most is that at this point, I have already been up for 3 hours.  My body and mind are fully awake and aware.  I am prepared for whatever challenge I am facing that day even if it is the first thing I encounter.

I have been practicing some form of this routine now for almost two years and I swear by it.  I find my energy level high throughout the day, and my attitude is more positive than ever.  While my exact routine may not be for everyone, I do suggest some sort of routine.  Once it becomes habit, you will not turn back to rushing out of bed 15 minutes before your first appointment!

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