What is the first thing you do when you wake up in the morning? On workdays, you probably hit snooze a few times and lay there wishing you could stay in bed. I am guilty of scrolling through Instagram or checking my emails for 5-10 minutes to help me “wake up.” Obviously, this is a bad habit for many reasons. For instance, the bright blue light is brutal for your eyes to have to adjust to immediately after being closed during your sleep. Another factor is that mindless scrolling consumes more time than you think…and time is usually not in surplus during busy morning routines. Also, spending time on your phone first thing in the morning can set a negative mindset for your whole day. Attention demanding emails, messages, calls, and social media posts can lead to a lot of unnecessary anxiety before you are even able to brush your teeth. Give yourself a minute!
Lately, I’ve tried to change how I start my day. In an ideal world I would wake up with the sun shining through the window and have a look outside first. I would see the ocean, a blue sky, mountains, or some other beautiful landscape that provided a therapeutic moment all on its own. However, back in reality…it is raining, the curtains are closed, and my alarm is going off for the third time. So, what to do?
Well you could do Pilates. And no, I don’t mean hop up and do a full set of the “hundred” or plank it out. Start laying down under your covers. In most traditional Reformer Pilates classes, you lay on your back to begin the session. You move your feet, your legs, your arms, your core, and then you sit up, then you stand. So, bring that mentality to the bedroom. Here is an example…we will call it “Waking up with Pilates”
1) Beginning on your back, flex and point your toes, roll your feet in circles around your ankles in both directions.
2) Bend and extend your legs.
3) Keep the knees bent and take them side to side (allow the spine to twist as well)
4) Wiggle your fingers and roll your hands in circles around your wrists in both directions.
5) Bend and extend your arms.
6) Take your arms over head and have a full long body stretch like someone is playing tug-of-war with your feet and hands.
7) Roll up to a sitting position and roll your head around your neck in both directions.
8) Stand up and perform a roll down (bending the knees slightly and reaching your hands to your toes.
9) Roll all the way up and reach your hands to the ceiling.
10) Place your hands by your side, roll your shoulders back, and start your day completely aligned!
This quick and easy routine is the perfect way to wake your body up and prepare it for whatever lies ahead, even if you are scheduled for a real Pilates session at Studio 7-5-9!
If you absolutely must look at your phone before or after this, this is a link to the It is a great daily devotional that leads you through a short reading that will hopefully help restore positivity and set good intentions.
Let me know if you try the “Waking up with Pilates” routine! Have a great weekend.