The events that occur in the morning can affect how your whole day will turn out. If you had a rough morning, the rest of your day will be harsh as well, and vice versa. Exercising and yoga, however, is known to be an effective method to relieve stress. According to scientist Kyli Rodrigez, exercising “utilizes diaphragmatic breathing that helps to take us out of the sympathetic nervous system and move us to a more parasympathetic, placid system that relaxes us”. Therefore, here are some exercises to practice to improve your mornings and feel better throughout the day:
Squats: According to fitness trainer Kyan Patten, Squatting helps jumpstart our bodies by “improving mobility and helping our joints to support the ligaments and connective tissue”. Squats also improve our cardiovascular system by increasing our Basic Metabolic Rate. It is recommended to do 10 to 15 squats in the morning as it not only helps to lose weight but to increase energy.
Downward Facing Dog: The downward facing dog is performed by going on all fours and pushing your hips up while straightening your legs. This should create an arc that looks like an upside down V. According to Patten, this exercise “stretches out the entire body while increasing blood flow to the brain”. Blood flow is important as it keeps you more vigilant and helps you make smarter choices. It is recommended to perform 5 sets of this pose and hold it for 15-20 seconds. In addition, Patten states that the downward facing dog can also “decrease tension since it extends our cervical spine and neck, while also relaxing the head”.
Push-Ups: The simple push-up has numerous health benefits. According to Patten, push-ups “build muscle tone and our strength while also providing some cardiovascular benefits. It also supports our shoulder joints if performed correctly.” The number of recommended push ups can vary from 5 sets of 10 to 10 sets of 30! Some people even enter the “push up” challenge which challenges even the most enduring person’s stamina. Currently, the world record for most push-ups in a row was set by Minoru Yoshida of Japan in 1980 at a whopping 10,507! This shows how effective push ups can be as a workout method, and how the benefits we gain in the morning can contribute to this simple exercise.
Jumping Rope: Since running or jogging is quite risky due to COVID, jumping rope is an effective method of improving your cardiovascular system. Patten says the jumping rope can “increase the heart rate and blood oxygen levels which, in turn, will boost how we take in our nutrients for the day”. The recommended amount of time you should jump rope is about 3 to 5 sets of 2 minutes. The more you practice jumping rope, the more awake you will feel every morning. Perhaps you won’t need that extra cup of coffee after all!
Regardless of what exercise we start our morning with, we can’t deny the benefits it has on ourselves, our body, and our well being. Scheduling exercises accordingly can help tackle the day ahead while moving past the morning grogginess. Some energy and motivation a day keeps anger and weariness away!