Morning yoga can completely transform your entire day. The components of a person’s morning rituals touch every aspect of the day which follows. The amount of energy a person has, the attitude they carry, the condition of their body and more are all influenced by the things they first do in the morning. Many people have spent years listening to experts say how breakfast is the most important meal of the day, and that eating a healthy breakfast can set the tone for a healthful and energetic day. The same principle applies to exercise, and the incorporation of yoga into a morning routine will pay a multitude of dividends.
Making the Most of Your Time
Many people in today’s world are incredibly busy. Anxiety and stress mounts on a daily basis, and many don’t have hours of free time to devote to morning rituals. While it would be nice to meditate and work out every morning, sometimes this isn’t always the most practical thing in the world. Yoga offers the best of both worlds, allowing you the opportunity to combine your meditative and fitness regimens into a single exercise that allows you to reap the benefits of both in less time. A daily morning practice helps form a habit, and like exercise or meditation, the longer you can sustain a daily yoga practice, the more likely you will be to continue over the long term.
Take Time for Self-Care to Relieve Anxiety and Stress
Children need to get ready for school, breakfast needs to be made, emails need to be replied to… The morning list of things to attend to can get pretty overwhelming at times. However, without making self-care a priority it is far too easy to get run down and even sick as the stresses of daily living pile up.
Having a morning yoga practice ensures that you take some time just to look after yourself before you face the challenges of the day. Turn of the cell phone and find a quiet room in the house where you can be undisturbed for a period of time in order to complete your practice. This moment of quiet in an otherwise very noisy world can be extremely restorative, helping to reduce anxiety and stress, and helps you face the demands of the day with renewed vigor. For added benefits, also find time at the end of your busy day to also spend a few moments taking care of yourself.
Strengthen Your Body and Your Mind
The physical benefits of yoga are becoming increasingly well documented. Professional athletes at the peak of their profession are turning to yoga as a means for strengthening their bodies, increasing their flexibility and to help protect themselves for injury. However, the mental benefits of a morning yoga practice should also not be overlooked.
Exercise is one of the only things that has been scientifically shown to help improve cognition. Many products, supplements and techniques are presented by savvy marketers as “brain boosters”, but in reality the best things you can do to maximize cognitive function throughout the day are to get enough sleep and enough exercise. Yoga helps with both of these factors. By getting your body moving first thing in the morning you allow yourselves to reap the cognitive benefits immediately, instead of having to plod through the morning haze until the coffee eventually kicks in. Yoga has also been shown to help improve the sleep quality of many people, feeding back into even further improved brain function.
It’s not a topic that everyone is comfortable talking about, but digestion is an extremely important factor in overall health and well being. Yoga has been shown to aid in digestion, and by incorporating a morning yoga practice you allow yourself to enjoy the digestive benefits of your practice before you even have your first meal of the day. This allows your body to effectively make use of the nutrients you take in throughout the entire day, helping to keep your body energized and healthy.
Ditch the Coffee
For many people, a caffeine fix is synonymous with mornings. However, reliance on a chemical substance just to be functional first thing in the morning is probably not the healthiest of habits to fall into. That is not to say that coffee shouldn’t be enjoyed or that it is bad for you, but that like everything else it should be enjoyed in moderation rather than serving as a crutch.
Yoga can give you a boost first thing in the morning so you can head to work with a clear mind and ample energy without being dependent on caffeine. Best of all, while many people crash when the effects of caffeine wear off, the energy boost you get from doing yoga in the morning can last throughout the day.
Starting to integrate a morning yoga practice into your daily morning ritual can seem difficult at first, but the rewards for the effort are many. Sometimes, it is hard to make a change in your life when the only promise is “better health”, as is often the case when people promote these types of changes. However, morning yoga practice will pay very obvious, noticeable dividends, in the form of increased energy, decreased anxiety, reduced stress, mental clarity, and more.