What type of day do you want to have today? We all know that a morning routine is a powerful way to set the tone of your entire day.
Last year I started waking up an extra hour early (on purpose), and it has absolutely transformed my life. Mornings used to be a stressful time for me. I felt rushed, disorganized and groggy. I would hit snooze on my alarm clock until I was forced to rush out of the house without breakfast.
But everything has changed for me now. If you wake up feeling groggy and low on energy, I suggest you start implementing a new morning routine. And I am going to suggest that you include 10 minutes of yoga into that routine to really activate your body and mind.
Why a 10 Minute Yoga Routine is Helpful
Yoga is magical and can heal your body and mind no matter what time of the day you do it, but there is something extra special about performing yoga when you first wake in the morning.
A Gut Check
While you are asleep, your body is busy processing, digesting and repairing from the previous day. By the time you wake up, most of what you have eaten the day before has moved through your digestive system.
If you feel energized and able to perform a yoga routine, you will be listening to your body. You will realize that the foods you ate yesterday served your body well. However, if during your yoga routine, you lack energy or are bloated ... you will know that certain foods you ate yesterday did not work for you.
So, yoga helps you stay in tune with your body! Do you listen to your body? Is it time for a gut check?
Better Sleep Habits
When you commit to practicing even 10 minutes of yoga each morning, you are going to be more likely to make your rest a priority.
You will know that instead of hitting that snooze button, you will be up right away. We all know how important sleep is to your health. A quick yoga routine will encourage you to get the rest that your body needs.
When you start your day with yoga, you put awareness of your breath into your mind from the very start of your day. By doing so, you are more likely to be aware of your breathing all day. Experts agree that the slower and deeper you breathe, the healthier you will be.
Every time I practice yoga, my mind is steady and calm. If you can start your day off by steadying and calming your mind ... it is highly likely that you will encourage a calm mind for the rest of the day. You will start your day off right with a serene mindset.
By setting your mental tone first thing in the morning, you will less likely be swallowed up by all the negativity and stress that is out there waiting for you. Starting your day off with mindfulness leads to a whole day of mindfulness.
Stretching your muscles and body makes you feel good, right? When you feel good first thing in the morning, you will be likely to want that feeling to continue. You will be more likely to make healthier choices throughout your day in order to maintain that feeling.
Let's be honest here ... if you finish up a yoga routine, are you going to indulge in that donut or will you want the yogurt parfait? Most of the time after a yoga session, your body will crave what is healthier.
When we start off the day by doing something amazing for our bodies and mind, we tend to want to continue that trend the rest of the day.
A Ten Minute Yoga Routine
Your alarm just sounded. Instead of reaching over to hit snooze, start your yoga routine right away. You don't even have to leave your bed.
- Activate your body with a good long stretch. Put your arms over your head and point your toes. Stretch as long as you can. Hold for a count of 15. Release for 10 seconds and stretch again. Repeat 3-5 times.
- Pull your knees up towards your chest. Hug them in deep and hold for 10 seconds. Repeat 3-5 times.
- Twist one leg over the other to stretch the spine and hold for a count of 15 seconds on each side.
- Sit up. Keeping your bottom firmly not bed, gently stretch your arm over your head and to the side as far as you can comfortably. Hold for a count of 15 seconds on each side.
- Meditate by sitting cross legged with your eyes shut and your palms facing upwards. Take deep breaths and focus on the air leaving your belly. If your mind wanders, bring your focus back to your breath. Try to do this for 5 minutes. Set a timer on your cell phone before you begin.
- Put your legs out straight and bend over from your hips. Stretch as far as you can comfortably. This will activate the muscles along the back of your legs. Hold for 15 seconds. Repeat 3-5 times.
- It is time to get out of bed! Sit on the edge of your bed. Place one leg over the other and lean forward to feel a stretch along your backside and your hip. Hold for 15 seconds on each side.
- Stand up straight and strong. Place your hand on your belly and breathe deep. Smile.
You are now ready to go out there and start your day. Incorporate this quick yoga routine into a series of healthy activities in the morning. This series of healthy habits make up your morning routine. Trust me, it can change your life!