Morning routines are great, but if you have a crappy night then it makes things a lot harder. Just ask anyone who has ever woken up with a hangover.

So, a good morning routine starts the night before.

Basically, if you can get good sleep, then you’ll likely feel really refreshed in the morning even if your ‘morning routine’ is just drinking a cup of coffee and reading a few pages of a book.

Imagine if you are not well rested, cranky, stressed and/or groggy. It’s going to take a lot of extra cold showers, ashtanga yoga and jumping jacks to get you out of that miserable state.

Instead, focus on having a good evening ritual, and the morning ritual will unfold a lot more smoothly.

Phone off

I use my iPhone to set an alarm but keep it on Airplane mode and turn of all my notifications for all my apps, so I never see any messages when I wake up. I also use my Amazon Echo to set a second alarm. I try very hard not to look at my phone before I go to bed, at least for an hour beforehand, and keep it in a separate room.

The blue light emitted from phones tricks your body into thinking it’s daytime, and in fact, every single cell in your body has its own biological clock, where light is the primary synchronizer of our rhythm. So, phone’s in the morning is fine (but getting some real sunlight is better!), but the phone is off at night.

The other reason I don’t look at my phone is because if I read a message or article before bed, I might end up laying there thinking about it or jumping out of bed to write an email, which is totally unnecessary and further disrupts my sleep.

Cool room

I try and keep the room temperature relatively cool, around 65-68 degrees. This has been shown to help you fall asleep faster, reduce insomnia, and even increase metabolism. This is also the reason I tend to not take a hot shower or bath in the evening, as not to raise my body temperature, but rather shower in the morning (if I do shower at night, though, I always finish with a cold shower).

Instead, I usually read a fiction or nonfiction book for about 20-30 minutes in bed before going to bed, which helps me wind down and also fall asleep. I’m a light sleeper so I wear ear plugs if necessary.

A small, nutritious snack.

I try not to gorge myself with chocolate sweets or eat any big meals at least 3-4 hours before going to bed. Eating a large meal late at night creates more work for our digestive tract, as we have to process the food as we sleep. This creates more work for our bodies and brains, which has the potential to disrupt our sleep.

But that doesn’t mean I don’t eat anything. I occasionally boil an egg or two and munch down before bedtime. New studies show that small, nutrient-dense mealsshortly before bed actually have positive physiological benefits, especially if you exercise regularly.

A few reasons I choose the egg: 1) Protein before bed decreases post-exercise recovery time. 2) The egg tastes delicious, and it’s nutrient-dense 3) Egg yolks have cholesterol which in turn boost testosterone production. This process is expedited during sleep.

As you can see, having a good morning routine really starts the night before!

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