With summer just a few weeks away, it's time to get motivated to move! After all we the more we move the better our bodies feel, and the better our bodies feel our mental state becomes much happier.
With the kick off of Memorial Weekend we know the fun festivities are amidst us. Some time getting up that extra hour early to workout and flow just doesn’t feel so “good”. Though getting adequate sleep is helpful, moving your body might be the cup of joe your body is craving. Here's a few tricks I use to get going even after a fun night at by the bonfire...
Set an intention next to your bed the night before.
It’s that simple. In fact you can use this over and over again. I simply write on a bright notecard what I want. Writing it down puts it out into the world. Now, if you’re keeping the same note card (and it has to be a physical paper, not your phone) that’s totally fine, just make sure you come back to it each night. Once written down, take 5-10 minutes before bed to read it out loud. A great way to do this is combine it with your evening routine : while cleaning your face, getting dressed, or even my favorite pose to get me to bed quickly…legs up the wall. With legs up the wall you not only help the circulation in your legs and relax your system, but it helps to stimulate calm. Looking at your note card and reading it over and over will help you get to where you want to be.
Whats the intention your should set you ask? Good Question! Simply put: I will rise early to move and breathe into my body. It’s clear, simple and focused. It can be made into a mantra that your mind can focus on to keep you from wandering to list making. Keeping it short and simple helps the brain to sort it into the subconscious as a “goal”. The ego likes to “win” or accomplish goals so by making it short we use the egos strengths to our advantage. Win, win!
Set the alarm for an early rise!
If you’re getting up for work quite early (before the rest of the house) then perhaps all you need to do is set the alarm only an extra 20 minutes earlier. If you’re in a household where chaos erupts all at once, perhaps you set your alarm an hour before that goes down. I love sunrise. It’s the perfect time to wake up as the world around you comes back to life after it’s routine slumber. It’s early, but it’s refreshing. No matter if the sun is shining or the day brings some cleansing rain, it’s always peaceful in it’s own way. If you can try waking up when this happens. It may take a week to get into it (and yes on the weekends too), but you’re body will start to adjust, especially if you start moving.
Now that you’ve gone to sleep with your mantra, follow through. As soon as the alarm goes off get up, get going, and get moving. Honestly, the extra snooze time isn’t usable sleep and creates the release of the hormone cortisone - a stress response used for fight or flight. Use the five minutes to get yourself into gear. Look at your notecard, breathe in deep, exhale and repeat three times. While the coffee brews, or the tea steeps this is your chance to get going. All you have to do is move!
It doesn’t take much to get a habit going. Starting simple will ease your body into the day and the new movement routine. Plus you won’t get hurt by easing into it, allowing you to keep up with adding on and making progress. I enjoy just some simple seated shoulder rolls forward and back with the breath, followed by seated side stretches to start.
Keeping it grounded? GREAT! At a boat pose in there to kick in the core and start pumping the endorphins (our “perk-you-up” hormone). All you have to do is sit tall, knees bent, feet flat to the floor. If that feels easy lift the feet (remember to still sit tall), maybe you straighten the legs and if you want a little more? Add some movement by straightening the legs then bending them, or rowing your boat side to side with the arms. This will for sure get you going!
Wanting to Rise and SHINE!? Start it all standing. Easy simple wake up movements. Roll the shoulders. Breathe. Use the counter or chair to make an L shape stretch. Forward fold for five…I love this first thing in the morning. Your body tells you the truth at sunrise so easing into this is crucial. Just fold and breathe. Keep the hips lifting. Don’t sag the chest and arch the spine, look forward and find length. With each exhale maybe find a little more. This stretches out the whole body. It’s amazing. Next add some movement! A crescent lunge backward and forward help balance and strengthen the biggest muscles in the body…aka the fat abolishers! The more we work this group the higher our metabolism gets. How great is that! But remember it’s all about balance, we still want to be able to lift the groceries not just carry them. ;)
Ready, Set, GO!
Now that you’ve moved into your morning body, had your cup of Joe, it’s time to get going!! Take the next 10-30 min to move. Go for an early morning run down the street and back while you listen to the birds chirping around you. Get outside and connect with the earth and do some pushups (or chatarungas) followed by seated bicycles. Speaking of bicycles, go for a ride and breathe it all in. Or maybe you keep it simple and walk around the neighborhood maybe adding a lunge or two along the way. The possibilities are endless! So what are you waiting for? Let’s MOVE THESE BODIES!! You’ll feel so good once you get started! All you have to do is begin.
Want some extra inspiration or ideas? Maybe looking to kick it up a notch with a group?
Starting this June, Yoga in the Park will be getting a new class: Circuit Yoga- A Strengthening Yoga Flow Using Vinyasa Flow (Sun Salutations) to build endurance with pace and movement. Flow ends with slow relaxing counterposes to find balance in mind and body. This class moves at pace, however, all levels welcomed and offered options to build up or down as you listen and honor your body.
Thanks so much!
As always, if you have any questions or even suggestions on what you do to get motivated to move please feel free to reach out and contact me here!
Have an amazing day!