The alarm gently sounds. It is time to arise. You yawn, stretch and survey your clean, minimalist bedroom. Pure natural light streams through the curtains. You unroll your yoga mat and prepare to meet the morning with some graceful yet powerful sun salutations. ‘It is going to be a good day’, you affirm, as you visualise your vegan breakfast of buckwheat pan cakes with chia seeds and blueberries.

Actually, if your morning looks like this you probably live in the alternate reality of Planet Pinterest. Most of us hit snooze seven times then have to deal with the chaos of kids, that dreggy feeling from last night’s wine, panic-mode over not being able to find a ladder-less pair of tights (on the day of the big client presentation!) and so forth. But put a good, realistic morning routine in place and your whole day – actually, make that your whole life – becomes magically easier. Feel calmer. Get more done. Here’s how:

morning routine

1. It all starts the night before. Make lunches. Work out what you’re going to wear the next day. Make a to-do list, hours before bed, and then park your worries. Rest is the priority.

2. Find it hard to sleep? Ditch that glass of wine and choose foods which contain or help with the production of melatonin, the sleep hormone e.g. bananas, pineapple, almonds, leafy greens, yoghurt or a nice glass of warm milk.

3. Get up earlier. Yes, really. That extra 30-45 minutes makes all the difference. Quiet time in the morning is magical. And if you have kids, it really helps to get a head start.

4. People like to classify themselves as morning or night people. While teenagers show a natural (and healthy) preference for late nights and mornings, the evidence seems to show that most of us are at our best in the morning, after a good night’s sleep. Think about how we lived for millennia. Were there any true night owls before artificial light? We tend to have beautiful clarity of thought after waking. Use extra time gained from an earlier start to visualise the day ahead. Think of what you wish to achieve.

5. No tech for the first hour. Whatever it is, it can wait.

6. A good breakfast can make or break the day. Choose wholegrains and protein for stable blood sugars and a slow release of energy throughout the morning.

7. Warm water and lemon is one of those nutritional tips that has taken social media by storm. Some say its over-hyped but water, Vitamin C and potassium can’t hurt. It flushes the system, gives a little immune boost and it’s not as jarring on the system as caffeine.

8. Pinterest was right. It’s great to start the day with exercise. A walk to work is perfect.

9. Low energy? A well-rounded diet with protein, wholegrains, legumes and eight portions of fruit and veg a day is the answer. We also need B vitamins as they help in the conversion of food to energy. If you feel that your diet is sub-par, or you’ve been unwell, consider a quality supplement such as Cleanmarine For Women.

morning routine exercise