I am not a morning person. As hard as I try to be, I must accept that. On a typical day I wake up 10 minutes before I need to leave, put on clothes, brush my teeth, and get out the door.
But I’ve found that as much as I hate mornings, taking my time to have a routine is one of the most impactful things I can do to set my day up for success. And I’ve discovered that my mental health needs it too.
One of the best things I’ve started doing is a morning walk. I know, lame. But I put my favorite playlist on, or even better, I open up Audible and listen to a good book, and walk. If I’m short on time it’s just around the block, but if I can I try to make it at least half an hour. With a good book playing, the time flies by.
I like to do this first thing. Sometimes I don’t even bother changing out of my pajamas. I just throw on a jacket and go. By the time I get back I am ready to face the day head on. The last few minutes of the walk I will usually take my headphones out and go over my plan for the day, clarify a few goals, and visualize myself accomplishing them.
While it’s great to plan ahead by meal prepping a few days out and packing my gym bag the night before, reemphasizing my nutrition and workout goals during a calm state in the morning is what really puts me on the right track.
Some of the audiobooks I have listened to so far are Red Sparrow, Where the Crawdads Sing, Little Fires Everywhere, and The Last Kingdom. I highly recommend them all!