I never used to be a morning person. In fact, my sisters used to laugh because I could barely utter a word before I had my cereal and shower. The older I get, however, the more I appreciate the beauty of a perfectly crafted morning routine to help me reach my goals.
Now that I'm a mom of 3, the only way to get some quiet time for prayer, reading, or writing is to wake up before the kids. Since my oldest is a pretty early riser, I have decided to start my day at 5 a.m.
It’s certainly not easy to get out of my warm bed hours before the sun rises, but the 5 o’clock hour has become my favorite part of the day. The whole house is quiet - an introvert’s dream - and I can actually hear myself think!
One of my favorite things about my morning routine is that it sets me up to make better body-honoring health choices throughout the day. This has really helped me to lose the last of the baby weight and have more energy for my kids.
Morning Habits of Healthy Moms
Drink lemon water.
Before anything else, fill up a glass with 8-16 ounces of water and squeeze the juice from half a lemon into your cup. I have also had success with a drop of lemon or grapefruit essential oil. There are so many benefits of lemon water on an empty stomach. It helps flush your digestive system, clears your skin, rehydrates you, and may even help you lose weight.
If we’re being completely honest, I used to 100% ignore the recommendation to stretch every morning. It seemed like something for old people - like that show Sit & Be Fit that used to come on after The Price is Right.
Well, I guess I’m old now because ever since I started incorporating stretching into my mornings, I feel so much more focused and energetic. Stretching gets the blood flowing and helps with those little aches and pains that crop up with each passing year (especially for us mamas who have gone through pregnancy, postpartum, and caring for little ones, which is such a physical job!)
I use the MuTu System core phases for my morning stretches, but you could just look up any morning stretching routine to get started!
Connect to Your Source
Like a cell phone, our spiritual batteries become drained if they’re not plugged into their source on a regular basis. For me, this means taking time each morning to read a few Bible verses and pray.
Connecting to my spiritual source puts me in alignment with my Creator each day, which means I am making choices that honor my body as a priceless work of art instead of treating it like a piece of junk because it doesn’t look the way I want it to.
This is a great devotional book for mamas!
Eat a Protein-Packed Breakfast
Consuming protein in the morning will keep you satiated throughout the morning. As moms, we know how important this is. If we’re hungry during the hustle and bustle of getting kids out the door, we’re more likely to grab a handful (or 6) of Goldfish crackers or resort to yelling at our kids because we’re feeling “hangry.”
Some great options are scrambled eggs with vegetables, Greek yogurt, or a high protein meal replacement shake or smoothie. I have used this shake every single morning for 4 years because it contains 24 grams of undenatured whey protein and healthy fats, and is designed to be a true meal replacement. It keeps me full all morning!
Related: 30 Day Nutrition System Review
Gratitude journals and the like are de rigueur, almost to the point where if we hear one more person tell us to write down 3 things we’re grateful for we’re going to scream.
Hear me out. I tried a gratitude journal and it wasn’t working for me. I kept writing down things like “a roof over my head,” “my family,” and “access to healthy food,” but I just wasn’t feeling it. And if you don’t feel grateful, what’s the point of a gratitude journal?
Then I heard this piece of advice (and I can’t remember where...sorry!): Think of 1-3 moments that you’re grateful for. Think of how you felt, the smells that are associated with that moment, the sounds, etc. Relive that moment, and I guarantee you’ll start your day feeling so thankful for the life you get to live and the people you get to do life with. Some of my favorites moments to relive are toddler snuggles, a date on the beach with my husband, or that time when I was studying abroad in Ecuador. It was a Friday afternoon and the weather was perfect and sunny, and we had margaritas for lunch while playing cards. Not a care in the world. Best. Memory. Ever.
The reason gratitude is part of healthy morning routine is because we need to realize that everything won’t magically be better when we lose weight or flatten that stomach. We’re already living a pretty amazing life. When you’re coming from a place of contentment and gratitude, then your healthy choices won’t be a punishment for eating “bad foods” or not losing the weight fast enough. They’ll come from a place of loving your body and wanting to take care of it because it can do amazing things for you.
Move your Body
Our willpower is strongest in the morning and fades throughout the day as we have to make more decisions. If you make it a habit to incorporate a workout or movement into your morning routine, it will become part of your day that you don’t even have to think about. Not to mention it will keep your metabolism burning throughout the entire day!
It could be something simple, like 25 push-ups, 25 squats, and 1 minute of planks. It could be a morning walk or run. It could be a workout video, a 10 minute HIIT routine you found on Pinterest, or it could literally be arm circles and walking lunges as you complete your morning chores.
I currently use the Intensive workout videos from the MuTu System because they’re only 25 minutes, and I’m still working on healing my diastasis recti.
So many things could fall into this category. Focusing on your breath for a few minutes is an easy way to connect your mind and body. There are also tons of great meditation apps or YouTube videos you could try if you’re new to meditation and mindfulness.
The benefits of mindfulness for your health are numerous, but it could also help you specifically to lose weight. When you are in touch with how your body feels you’ll be less likely to stuff your face with half a bag of potato chips before realizing how terrible it makes you feel. Instead, you can stop and think about what food is going to make you feel good and fuel your body for whatever tasks you have for the day. (Bonus: it can also help you mindfully choose a favorite dessert and FULLY enjoy it without guilt).
Related: 6 Foods to Energize Tired Moms
I’m hoping to get my hands on this book soon to make my mornings even better! I hope these tips helped you on your journey to health.
P.S. If you want to learn more about the protein-packed premium shakes so many moms have used to improve their health, lose the baby weight, and gain natural energy in a safe way, head to my Facebook group, Strong For Her Tasks, for more info!
Wishing you wellness of mind, body, and soul.