How to Improve Your Start | 100m & 40 Yard Dash
How to Get a Good Start in the Morning
Getting a good start in the morning doesn't always come naturally, and diving into a new day with energy takes some planning. To ensure your morning prepares you for a great day, you need to start the night before, get ready to wake up well-rested at the right time, and have the right things on hand for a great breakfast. Morning is also an important time to look after your physical and mental well-being so that your mind and body are ready for the day ahead. And, you can make the most of your morning by using your early hours as an opportunity to get a jump start on productivity.
Getting Organized and Waking Up
Prepare for your morning the night before.Choose your clothing – including accessories and underwear – before you go to sleep. Leave them somewhere convenient so that you can start your day without having to worry about what to wear or where to find a missing earring or sock.
- If you take a lunch with you to school or work, then prepare your lunch before bed so that you can use your morning time to focus on other things.
- Make sure you keep up with doing laundry so that you have enough clean clothes available to choose a nice outfit for each work or school day.
Open your curtains or blinds before you go to sleep.The natural light of the sunrise can help your body prepare itself to wake up. If you keep your curtains and blinds closed all night, you will miss this important cue. If you let in the natural light in the morning, you will be more ready to wake up with energy when your alarm rings.
Get enough sleep.On average, each of us needs about 8 hours of sleep every night. Some can live with 6 hours and others find that they need up to 9 hours. Take the time to find out what you need to have a productive day and then organize your time so that you can sleep for the amount of time that is right for you.
Wake up at the same time each day.Experts agree that waking at the same time every day is important. It helps you to get the right amount of rest because your body knows when to signal you to go to sleep. Psychologists even say that some people with anxiety and depression can alleviate some of their symptoms by waking up at the same time each day.
- Wake up at the same time on weekends, too, not just school or work days.
Don’t use the snooze button.We all want to hit the snooze button sometimes, but getting an extra 9 minutes of low-quality sleep is not really much help in getting a good start in the morning. If you tend to hit the snooze button while you are not very awake, then try a smartphone app that makes you solve a math puzzle or other brainteaser before turning the alarm off or letting you snooze. That way, you’ll be awake enough to really be aware of your decision.
Focusing on Your Physical and Mental Well-being
Meditate for calm and focus.Many successful people engage in some type of spiritual practice in the morning, either meditation or prayer. Take some time for this type of devotion – it can help you to clear your mind for the busy day to come and be able to focus calmly on what is most important.
- There are many ways to meditate. Some people simply breathe deeply and focus on their breath going in and out. Others use guided meditation recordings or videos, which are widely available for purchase or online. In a guided meditation, there is usually relaxing music and a voice that talks you through breathing and mind-clearing or focusing thoughts.
Get some exercise.Morning exercise is a great way to fill your mind and body with energy for a great day ahead. People who exercise in the morning are most likely to keep up their exercise routine than people who exercise at other times of day. And morning exercise is a great way to prevent stress and anxiety, and to lower your blood pressure.
- Take some time to stretch your body. Stretching can lower blood pressure, decrease inflammation in your body, and even promote weight loss. Try a morning yoga routine or some simple stretching exercises.
- Lay out your workout clothes the night before. Or, if you exercise in comfy casual clothes, you can even try wearing them as your pajamas. Jump straight out of bed and onto the treadmill using this strategy.
- Sign up for a fitness class with a friend to keep yourself accountable. If you register and pay for a fitness class in advance, and have a friend expecting you to show up, you may be more likely to stick with the morning exercise that will help you make a great start.
Have a good breakfast.There’s plenty of advice out there about the best things to eat for breakfast. Some swear by green smoothies (fruit and kale or spinach are common ingredients).Others believe in a high-protein breakfast. Find out what’s best for you and remember that your body and mind need food in the morning to fuel a productive day.
- A healthy breakfast includes whole grains, lean protein, low-fat dairy products, and fruits and vegetables.
Spend time with your loved ones.Morning is a great time to connect with those you care about. If you live with a partner and children, try to build in quality time with them before you dive into your paid or school work. If you live alone, you can make morning a time to connect by phone or online chat with friends or family, or even to write personal messages to those you care about.
- Use your commute to stay connected with friends and family, by writing to them while you ride the subway or talking to them hands-free while you drive or walk to work.
Express your gratitude.Some of the most successful people in the world use morning as an opportunity to write down the things they are grateful for each morning. You might be grateful for people, places, or opportunities. Take some time in the morning to write down 3 things that you are grateful for so that you start the day in a positive frame of mind.
- Carry a small notebook to write your gratitude lists in, or save your lists on your phone. Going back over your previous expressions of gratitude can be a very positive experience, so keep track of the many things you have been grateful for.
Making Your Morning Productive
Get on top of important information.If the overseas markets or international news are important to your work life, then cover your important information sources first thing in the morning. The same goes for email or social media activity. You can catch up on what has happened overnight and get the reading and communications done that will help you to be prepared for a productive day.
- Instead of visiting multiple news sources, visit websites that aggregate the important news for you. You can save time and energy this way and have more information under your belt before breakfast than ever before.
Work on a “passion project.” If you have a project you are passionate about or a goal you are working towards, work on that project in the morning. Passion projects – like researching your family tree or writing a novel – won’t get done unless you put them at the top of your list. Morning can be the best time to work on these kinds of projects, before you get caught up in the activities and decisions that fill up the rest of your day.
Work on a top priority project first thing.Morning provides a great opportunity to carve out time you need to devote to the most important project on your to do list. Working on your top priorities first can be helpful because it allows you to focus on 1 thing before the competing demands of a busy day begin to intrude on your time.
Do things the same way every morning.Productivity experts agree that successful entrepreneurs often have a morning routine they follow.Psychologists agree that routinizing morning activities can be helpful to making a positive start each day.
- Try waking at the same time, eating the same thing for breakfast each day, and following the same hygiene routines. Some people even wear the same outfit each day to cut down on the number of decisions they have to make.
QuestionShould my breakfast be light or heavy?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerEat a light breakfast, because you do not want to be too full, but do need to get your system going.Thanks!
QuestionCan I make my lunch in the morning?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerYes, this is the ideal time of day to make lunch because it's going to stay fresh for a few hours. Lunches made the night before, while convenient, can go stale or soggy due to being left too long. That said, it depends on the food -- anything that is going to be reheated (if you have access to a microwave/toaster oven, etc.), can be prepared the night before and wrapped in the morning to go with you.Thanks!
QuestionWhat can I do if I'm not allowed to wake up early?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerTry to explain to your parents why you would like to wake up earlier. If you still aren't allowed, you could try waking up quietly and just resting in bed even without getting up. That way you can still wake up when you want without upsetting your parents.Thanks!
QuestionShould I go to sleep late or early?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerIf you want to get up and get going early, it's always best to go to bed on the earlier end, so that you are able to get enough sleep.Thanks!
- Never drink coffee or anything that has caffeine in it before you sleep.
Sources and Citations
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