Let us start with a story about a friend of ours. The day she moved to Warsaw, Poland, before going to bed for the first time in her new apartment, her significant other opened the window saying “let the first morning sunshine wake us up in the morning!” The next day, what actually woke them was the wake-the-dead sound of a waste truck driving by their house. For them, the meaning of the word “sunshine” has been changed forever.
If you think about it, that story could be symbolic for many people.
It could represent the disconnection between your evening expectations for the next morning and the harsh reality of those early hours
While going to bed, you believe you will wake up early and enjoy the morning peace while lazily sipping delicious coffee and reading the press. What you actually get is nothing short of madness.
And we are here to tell you that you have every right to be sceptical about working out in the morning. For starters, you already run every morning, wondering where your right sock is.
Speaking of which, there is an amusing saying about running in the morning: “The best thing you can do in the morning is run 15 miles. Because nothing that happens that day can be worse than running 15 miles in the morning”. Dear runners, no offence: we adore running. Perhaps we would run too if we were not so lazy. And had bought fancy sneakers.
We are sure that you always have believed that somewhere, in your dream world, there is a way to savour your morning and even exercise painlessly, right? And in less than two minutes you will possess that secret knowledge (or scroll down to our fitvize morning workout videos).
Ok, back to busy morning. Looking to be inspired after our New year 2016 resolution to “wake up early and get important things done”, we bought a book by Laura Vanderkam, called ‘What the most successful people do before breakfast’.
That winter we were in Indonesia, enjoying terrific sunsets and getting up pretty early (8 am) because it was really, really hot. So during the breakfast we grabbed that life-changing book and in 30 minutes we read it to the core.
What we discovered is that by the time we had drunk our ‘Copi Bali’ (the one and only sort of coffee on Bali), those – (obviously successful) people had already:
- nurtured their careers
- given their families and friends their best
- exercised and performed spiritual practices.
Do we really need to say how much of a loser we felt at that moment? And as if all that information was not devastating enough, the book provided an overwhelming appendix – 50 (yikes!) tips for better morning time management.
It shouldn’t be that tough, though.
Despite what they say, you, precious, deserve a perfect morning. Do not settle for anything less
So, let’s go deeper. It will be easy peasy.
In order to begin your day feeling refreshed, toned and energised, all you need is an additional 10 min each morning. Do you think you can do that for us? If not, we have been creative and prepared also 5, 2 and … even ONE MINUTE adorable workouts for you! Just because we really, really want you to succeed :))
All you need to stay fit is ONE minute a day
Are you on board? Great! Let’s get started.
Pick your morning body & mind upgrade based on time at your disposal and your mood when you wake:
One Minute Morning Workout
For starters, look through these five one-minute sports-like ways to get out of bed. All you need is one minute of your precious morning time. By the time you actually get up, you will have already completed a short workout. The main take away here: A little is better than nothing.
Here is the description of those five cuties, inspired by Pilates and charged with positive vibes:
1. Lie on your back with your arms next to your body and legs straightened and slightly apart. Take a deep breath in and pull in your abdominals. While exhaling, bring your arms straight over your head and back, trying to elongate your spine to the maximum (keep your abs in). Inhale to prepare and while exhaling straighten your arms to the ceiling, put your chin to your chest and roll up bone by bone until you reach sitting position. Then stretch gently towards your feet. Now bend your knees until your knees are hanging over the side of the bed and stand up.
If you find the Roll Up too challenging, you can make it easier by grasping one leg with your arms. The key to success here is to roll up as smoothly, as you can.
2. Lie on your back with knees bent and together, and your arms stretched out perpendicular to your body. While exhaling, put your knees to one side trying not to lift your shoulder blades, than pull your abs in and return to initial position. Repeat 2 times for each side, than use your arms to lift your upper body and proceed with the cat exercise up to 3 repetitions.
3. Lie on your back and press your knees to your chest. Pulling your abs in, try to roll up to the sitting position while exhaling. Now, feeling proud of yourself, get out of bed.
4. Roll onto your side and bend your knees. Straighten your arms in front of you, one above the other. While exhaling, stretch your top arm in the opposite direction to your knees. And put it back while inhaling. Don’t move your lower body. Repeat 4 times then turn to the other side and do the same. Then use your arms to lift your upper body and stand up.
5. From lying on your front: place your palms near your shoulders, lift your upper body gently, trying to stretch out your neck muscles (like a swan). Proceed with one or two push ups (any kind), go to the child’s pose, then stand up.
There is one more thing you can do and it is not mentioned. We mean you can take a cold shower. Wakes up all the muscles!
Two Minutes Morning Workout
The next video contains the coffee effect two minute workout. This works as well as a double espresso. All you need is a towel or a pillow. This morning workout is designed to stretch your upper body, improve your flexibility and target all muscle groups.
Five Minutes Morning Workout
Now it’s time to wake up your mind. Some ideas::
- count down from 100 to 1 as fast as you can
- write by hand a 100 word thank-you letter, need-to-buy note, or warning to a badly parked dude. Be creative! These adorable five minutes will boost your creativity and provoke splendid ideas for your working day
- play chess. If you don’t know how – learn how
- draw a beautiful flower. Actually, any flower will work
- rotate your shoulders forward to make circles. Than rotate them backwards to make circles. And now – surprise – rotate your right shoulder forward and your left one – backwards simultaneously! Repeat a few times and change to the opposite directions. Yes, it is possible, just give it a shot!
Ten Minutes Morning Workout
No we are gonna talk about some serious and boring workout stuff. Bazinga! (The Big Bang Theory – you know that series, yes?)
Do you want to work out all of your body at once, oxygenate your brain and reduce your level of day-to-day stress? Yes? then
The classical Pilates exercise – The Hundred – is the answer to your prayers.
The Hundred exercise encourages your brain and nervous system by requiring you to coordinate counting, arm pumping, and breathing as you keep your body’s proper form and neutral back. The Hundred increases your breathing by expanding your ribcage and lungs, the important and often missed back part of your lungs in particular. By lengthening and strengthening the muscles that surround the ribcage, the Hundred converts your lungs into a ventilator for pulling new air in and pushing old air out. Cool, yeah?
The breathing. The inhale and the exhale for the Hundred are to the count of 5. So, there is a count of 5 for each inhale and also a count of 5 for each exhale all the way to 100.
A few moments regarding the position of your legs. Being sure to stay in neutral spine (with no shift of the pelvis) start with your legs out straight and then with your heels on the mat, draw your feet softly until they are about a foot from your seat bones. When you are strong enough in your core to maintain a quiet pelvis and neutral spine, you can keep your legs in tabletop position or you can lower your legs to 2-3 inches of the floor, but this almost never works for a beginner.
There should be no tension at the side of your neck. If you feel tension here, your nose and your chin are too high. If tension does come into the sides of your neck, let your spine release your head down then right up again. That moment will release neck tension. Do this as often as is needed.
Once you are in the correct position, inhale slowly into your ribs,to the count of 5, with your arms moving to the count – exhale 6-7-8-9-10, always to the count of 5, allowing your abdominals to fall deeper and deeper into your core, which will increase in strength as you move in this exercise towards 100. Take your time… Time is needed to experience a real inhale and a deep exhale. Try to experience that movement. Great job!
Fifteen Minutes Morning Workout
Wow! You have read all of the above! Fantastic!
Finally, if you feel like a champion, we have saved the most challenging part especially for you. And still, you only need15 minutes. How can this be possible?
All we hear from our world are dubious commandments to “get up at 4 am” if you want to be productive. Instead, watch this wonderful TED talk (you know by now, we love TED talks, yeah?)) named “Sleep your way to success” by Ama Ama, and feel ready to do more by sleeping more. No kidding. It works.
So, here we have a 2 min morning workout video to repeat 5 times with one minute rest between repetitions.
Watch, preform, repeat – and you feel the difference. Trust us, it is all your body needs to welcome a new day. Fifty criss-crosses is a very good start.
To wrap up the morning theme, we have prepared a FREE little bonus for family keepers, fitness nuts and desperate housewives (three in one): a printable smoothie recipe card, containing a week’s worth of healthy recipes. Download that lovely printable and take it with you next time you do grocery shopping.
Enjoy these delicious energy supplies for the whole body!
First, if you find this post about morning workout at home fabulously helpful, please share it to your friends whose mornings you care about.
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