Is getting up early healthy? The simple answer is ‘yes’. And if you don’t do it yet, every fibre in your body will now scream that you shouldn’t read this article. Yet your curiosity wins from this warning, which may mean you’ll be standing next to your bed tomorrow at 6:00 a.m. to try out this morning routine. And once you’ve tried getting up early, there’s a chance you’ll get addicted and do it every day. But why? What’s in it for you? And how on earth can getting up early be healthy?
I myself read a similar article for a few months and now I see myself getting up daily between 5:00 and 6:00 to start my day with a short workout and an extensive preparation. The impact that getting up early has had on my life (in the positive sense) I could not have foreseen in advance. I perform better at work, I am much healthier, feel better in my skin and generally just feel better. Of course you wouldn’t expect that with the idea that you have to get up at 5:00 tomorrow, would you? I’ll explain why getting up early is so good for you and why you have to start tomorrow.
My morning routine
Every morning I get up between 5:00 and 6:00 to start my day with a large glass of water and a short workout of up to 30 minutes. I prefer to do my workout on an empty stomach, but you could also eat something easily digestible before exercising. After running I make a nice bowl of full French curd cheese with honey, cinnamon and nuts, a glass of water and bake coffee for breakfast.
While I make my breakfast useful I go through my goals for this day, week and month. I determine if I am on schedule and what I have to do to stay on schedule (or come back when I am behind). If I notice that I am ahead of schedule, I expand or increase my goals. Then I look at my long term goals. I don’t directly do anything with them, I just go through them. I do this to make sure that they can never escape my attention. Once a month I see what I need to do in the coming month to get one step closer to my long-term goals.
Then I prepare my day. I identify my most important tasks for today and plan them so I can’t overlook them. I try to complete them as quickly as possible.
Finally, I end my morning routine with a motivational video on YouTube, a podcast or a motivational article. Positive thoughts make sure you have more energy during the day, but also that you are more open to opportunities. As I drive to work, I listen to an audiobook to develop myself.
On my personal blog Nicooud.com you can read how I use self-development to work towards a more successful, happier and healthier life.
Why all that in the morning?
First, because the morning determines the rest of the day. A good, positive start gives you energy for the rest of the day.
Secondly, at the end of the day you don’t have a lot of energy left to do this kind of thing and therefore it has less impact.
The last argument is that in my old routine I hardly had time to do these things. I now gain about an hour to 1.5 hours a day to do things like this. Think of it as time to invest in yourself without people wanting anything from you.
Important rules for a perfect start
It is essential that you do not read mail, check Facebook, read Tweets (etc) before you arrive at work. There are even studies that show that the continuous checking of your mail reduces your IQ by 10 points. But mail, social media, television and radio also create noise, incentives and distractions. This causes you to start the day with an overload of information, which can lead to concentration problems. So leave your phone on the sidelines during your morning ritual.
About that news… the news today is dominated by negativity, slander and advertising. Especially the negativity in the news causes many people to walk around with fears and stress, because even though it is not directly related to your life, your body still produces stress hormones. Facebook did a test last year, in which a group of people mainly saw negative messages on their timeline and almost all of these people started posting more negative messages themselves. Avoid negativity like the plague and especially during your morning ritual.
The boss of your day
It may sound crazy, but by getting up early you can start the day in a quieter way. Preparing your day provides a sense of control and ensures that you actually complete the most important tasks that day. And because it’s a routine (that’s what you should make of it) everything is predictable, giving you a feeling of control again.
More alert and energetic all day long
Start your day, like me