One of the most difficult things about working from home is the lack of structure. It’s too easy to drift away from your responsibilities when you’re a meter away from your couch and Netflix.
Your focus drifts in and out, time moves strangely, and you start to lose touch with yourself.
The best way to take control of your life is to first take control of your body. By starting your day with a light workout, you’re telling your body that it’s going to be disciplined today. You’ll be amazed at how much gaining control over your body affects your focus, your mood and your overall control over your life.
This morning workout is designed not only to give your whole body a full stretch, but also to make connections between your mind and your muscles. Then, finally, a small challenge to help you set your mind to overcome any bigger challenges that you might face later today.
Get out of bed!
The first and most important part of the morning workout routine is getting out of bed. Start by putting both feet on the floor as soon as your alarm rings.
Set your posture
Stand up, stretch your arms over your head and take a deep breath. As you breath in, make your spine as long as you can. Squeeze your core and look straight ahead.
- Walkouts to hip stretch
Keeping your knees straight, reach down until your palms are in front of your toes. Then slowly walk your hands out until you are in a full plank position. Hold the plank for 5 seconds. Then, bring your right foot outside of your right hand and hold as long as you feel like. Switch feet, hold, then walk your hands back to your feet. Repeat 2-4 more times.
- Bird Dogs
Put a pillow or a blanket down on the floor, and rest your knees on top. Then get down onto all fours, with your hands underneath your shoulders and your knees directly underneath your hips. Make your back flat (flat enough to rest a glass on if you had to) and parallel with the floor. Squeeze your stomach muscles tightly. Then, extend your right arm and your left leg straight out so both are also parallel with the floor, making a straight line from the tip of your right finger, down your back and to your heel. Hold for 5 seconds and switch sides. Repeat 2-4 times on each side.
- Cossack Squats
First, make your feet wide with your toes pointed out. Then, keeping your perfect posture, squat down with your weight on one leg while keeping your other leg out straight. Shift your weight from one leg to another. You can support your weight with your hands if you need to. Shift back and forth 10-15 times.
- Dead Bugs
Lay down on your back with your head rested on the ground, neutral posture. Raise both hands straight up in the air, and both knees straight up in the air at right angles. At the same time, extend your right hand and your left foot straight out and hold for five seconds. Then switch sides. Repeat 2-4 more times each side.
- Finally, A Small Challenge
Lastly, do one exercise that challenges you slightly, we’d say about 50% of your maximum effort. We know you’re not going to be able to do something really challenging first thing in the morning, but something to get your heart rate up is great. We’d suggest pushups. If you can do 50 pushups without stopping when you’re fully awake, do 25. If you hate pushups, do squats instead. Or hold a plank. Or do some burpees! Whatever you like. The key is that you start the day with a little challenge, and build from there.
Now you’re awake, you’re focused, and you’re in control.
Don’t stop now! You’ve got a beautiful day ahead of you.