11 Things you should be doing everyday before 11am
11am is that time of day when it's not quite lunch, but the best part of the morning is definitely over - and there are a few things you should ensure you do everyday before 11am rolls around. What are we talking about? Well, ways to get your morning off to a positive, productive start for one. Ways to energise yourself and give yourself the motivation you need to get through the day, as well as ways to calm your mind and body so that anxiety and stress don't set in and ruin your mood. So here they are, 11 things you should be doing everyday before 11am!
#1. Stop hitting snooze
The snooze button is either your best enemy or your worst friend, and if you haven't decided which yet, maybe we can convince you! Hitting the snooze button might give you an extra ten minutes in bed, but abusing it by using it multiple times can wreck your day. If you often find yourself waking up tired, the snooze button could be to blame, according to scientists! Around 62% of us here in the UK need between 15 minutes and an hour to feel fully awake after we get out of bed (1). Our bodies naturally respond to what's happening around us, so as it gets lighter outside and closer to getting up time, your sleep gets lighter too in preparation for waking up. Hitting the snooze button can send you back into a deep sleep - resulting in you feeling terrible when you eventually do decide to get up. So ban the snooze button and get out of bed the second that alarm goes off!
#2. Listen to your favourite tunes
The right music can boost your mood - just think about how great you feel running or working out to your favourite playlist! Putting on some upbeat music in the morning can start your day the right way and energise you. Looking for some great wake-up songs to motivate you? We like this list.
The health benefits of meditation include reduced stress levels, enhanced concentration and a clearer mind - not to mention slower heart rate, reduced risk of anxiety and depression and a mood boost. Why wouldn't you want to meditate in the morning? Meditating when you get out of bed first thing can help to focus your mind on the day ahead whilst reducing any feelings of anxiety you might have - maybe you've got an important meeting coming up at work or have an exam to sit later. Meditating can prepare you for the day whilst calming your mind and enhancing your sense of personal well-being. This is definitely something you should be doing everyday before 11am!
When we sleep (or when we are sitting still for long periods of time) our muscles shorten with inactivity, and sudden movements - such as heading to the gym for a workout without stretching properly - could lead to injuries such as torn ligaments and tendons. It's so important to stretch your muscles when you get out of bed, especially if you're heading out for a morning run or working out! The right stretches wake you up slowly, increase your flexibility and can help ease aches and pains - perfect if you suffer from a stiff neck or shoulders when you wake up. Try our 10 wake-up stretches to help you get up and go to put a spring in your step every morning!
#5. Eat a healthy breakfast
When your granny told you breakfast was the most important meal of the day, she wasn't fibbing. Breakfast is super-important to fuel you for the day and you should be eating a healthy, protein-packed breakfast if you want to get the most out of your morning, whatever you're getting up to! Healthy breakfast options include an omelette or boiled egg, home-made blueberry and zucchini muffins, granola (best to make your own) or even some smoked salmon and scrambled eggs, if you're feeling indulgent at the weekends. Ensuring you eat before 11am every day of the week gives your metabolism a kick start and means you'll have the energy you need to get things done. So don't skip breakfast or wait until lunchtime to eat - research shows that it's best to eat within an hour of waking up to fuel your body (2).
A morning run or workout before you hit the office is the perfect way to start your day. There are loads of benefits linked to morning exercise, from boosting your focus and your metabolic rate to ensuring you're less likely to skip your workout (3). Motivating yourself to hit the gym after a long day at the office can be tough, but if you wake up to a hearty, healthy breakfast you should be feeling energised and ready to exercise!
#7. Make a 'to-do' list
Want to be more organised! Making a 'to-do' list everyday can help you tick things off and makes sure you get everything done. Whether you're prioritising a list of tasks at work, working from home or just have things you need to do around the house, writing things down can give you a sense of achievement as you tick each task off!
#8. Pack a super-healthy snack
Snacking is healthy - don't let anyone tell you otherwise. It's all about choosing the right snacks to give you an energy boost that sees you through until you next mealtime, whether you're fuelling a workout or just have a rumbling stomach at the office. With a bit of preparation at home in the morning you can pack a super-healthy snack - how about one of these?
- Rice cakes and nut butter (add half a sliced banana for an energy boost)
- Home-made hummus and carrot and celery dipper
- A hard-boiled egg
- A handful of home-made trail mix
- Turkey roll-ups
Laughter has plenty of health benefits, and squeezing some laughter - or even a smile - into your mornings can boost your mood for the rest of the day. From funny animal videos on Facebook to a comedy podcast on your morning commute, wake up smiling and you can pretty much guarantee nobody will be able to bring you down for the rest of the day!
#10. Prioritise difficult tasks
It's easier to concentrate - and you'll have more energy - first thing, so make your day top-heavy and tackle those difficult projects and tasks first thing. Schedule important client meetings at the office or get the housework done at home before 11am. That way when you start to feel the slump later, you'll have completed the most important, challenging tasks of the day already, so your day will be getting progressively easier, not harder!
#11. Get at least one of your five-a-day
In order to eat the five recommended portions of fruit and vegetables a day, you need to start early. A fruity breakfast smoothie or vegetable-packed omelette gets in at least one or two portions, making it easier to spread the remaining portions out over lunch, snacks and dinner. Even if it's a handful of dried fruit or some frozen peas in your scrambled eggs, start as you mean to go on and you'll find that you're more likely to make healthier choices later on in the day!
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