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It’s somewhat amusing that as I plan this show on:
Your Ideal Morning Routine During Covid-19,
I’m sitting in the kitchen at 3:10am a good hour into my working day.
Doesn’t sound quite so ideal does it?
However I’m working out a new ideal for coronavirus quarantine that incorporates as much of my old routine as possible and I recommend you do too! If you didn’t quite have an ideal morning routine pre Covid-19 nailed, this could be exactly the time to make it happen.
Here are a few considerations, and Yes I’m getting my acronym on with 5 steps to your I.D.E.A.L. Morning Routine.
One: Intention. What is YOUR number one priority right now?
Some words to describe this crazy time in our world that spring to mind are: uncertain, surreal and overwhelming. Setting your intention and stacking the habits that will help you achieve it can give you a sense of calm and purpose. This is vital for us all, and especially if you’ve lost your job or your working routine is severely disrupted.
Side note: If you’re out of a job, I loved, loved, loved the way NZ PM Jacinda Ardern put it: “To everyone who feels like they don’t have a job right now, you do have and job and it’s to stay at home and to save lives.”
Otherwise the possibility is all too likely that you’ll just end up thinking about ALL THE THINGS beyond your control.
Pick 3 words or 3 states to help support your intention for today. Mine are: Calm, Efficient and Health. They are all geared towards helping me achieve my new number one priority, to rebuild my business from face to face personal training to online personal training.
Now you can stack the habits and actions that will help you achieve your words / your states in step two…
Two: Day to come is planned the night before.
This step is all about helping you eliminate the decision making process and making it easier to just DO the most important DO’s! One of the best 5 minutes you can spend will be planning your tomorrow with tasks by order of priority. I also find it hugely helpful to add an amount of time to spend on each task.
If you’re new to working from home and find it tough to make a start here are a few tips:
- Have a set start time for your day. Ideally that also means a set time to go to bed the night before.
- Get properly dressed.
- Find the amount of time that works for you to perform focused bursts. (my preference is 45 minutes and I’ll generally do 2 back to back then have a short break) Also set a timer to A) Get you to start. B) Let you know there’s an end you’re working towards.
Again, this is an uncertain time – so build in a little certainty, a little structure you can rely on wherever you can. It’s not only efficient and effective, it’s also comforting.
Three: Eliminate negative inputs.
Perhaps the most vital step to ensure your ideal morning routine is not derailed. I guess it comes back to your intention. When you consider both: “What is your number one priority right now?” and also, “Who are the person you’re looking to be in this global crisis?” if you want to lead with compassion and to support and nurture your clients and community then you’ve actually GOT to protect yourself from the colossal onslaught of mental health destroying inputs.
I truly believe this is a “Put your own oxygen mask on first” situation for those of us who want to be there to support others.
In the same way that I’m not going to show up my best for a WhatsApp virtual personal training session if I haven’t prioritised my morning walk or 30 minute 3 exercise workout I’m also not going to show up my best if I’ve just been down the media rabbit hole updating me on all the latest in depressing coronavirus news.
Of course we have a responsibility to remain conscious of what’s happening so we can adjust our actions accordingly however if there were two super important times to NOT spiral into any more detail than absolutely necessary I’d suggest you eliminate those negative inputs: first thing in the morning and also last thing at night before you try and sleep.
Four: Add the actions / habits that keep you feeling happy and healthy long term.
Ok, this is the standard part I’d normally focus on in none Coronavirus times. Ideally your morning routine will include:
- A daily practice that helps you stay calm, grounded and grateful. For me this is 10 minutes meditation, though for you it might be journaling, reading or prayer.
- A delicious, nutritious #plantstrong meal you look forward to and enjoy. By giving your body awesome fuel first thing you are setting the tone for the day to come. You’re likely also minimising the chance of a mid morning or late lunch demolish session fuelled by Hangry!
- Some form of movement even if it’s just 5 minutes. I love to walk to work listening to a podcast. While I’m still allowed out of the house here in Noosa I’m getting getting in my early morning walk… and WOW, I’m appreciating it even more.
Five: Learn from your struggle-street situations.
The emphasis I want to put on learning here is to learn with HUGE compassion for yourself. This is the time to be kind to yourself and to everyone else. The time to seriously raise threshold so far as what annoys you.
Some of us will be living in closer proximity to our loved ones or flatmates with MUCH less precious alone time and space than normal.
Some of us will be living alone and finding that super tough.
I have one dear client whose husband LOVES to stay at home and is delighted as each social engagement gets canceled! He has his home gym all perfectly set up and he’s ecstatic to “see” his clients over video call not in person. Sadly his glee at the need to social isolate is somewhat infuriating for my client!
I know many people will find it tough to ignore all the stores of snack food that you might have squirrelled away to last the next however long it happens to be. As an emotional eater my current strategy is part planning and part laziness. I’ve planned what I want to eat and I’m really trying to steer clear of snacking. Equally the foods I might snack on, the foods I’ve deemed “OK” to snack on in this somewhat less physically active time, take a bit of effort to pull together and I really just can’t be bothered right now!
On that note, next up I’d like to chat about decision fatigue. The world is changing so quickly right now. If I look at my life one mere week ago compared to today, the changes are drastic. I’m sure it’s the same for you. We all keep having to make huge decisions. Vital decisions concerning career, our living situation, and how to best minimise risk to our health and the health of those we love.
It’s exhausting right?
I’m finding it a comfort to chuck as much as I can on auto-pilot. I don’t want to think about what meals to eat or what workout to do.
And yet, as I know I keep mentioning now is exactly the time to stay (or get!) on point with your eating and exercising actions.
It’s good to keep it simple though.
I’m alternating between the same couple of lunches and a few easy dinners. Instead of my 5 day a week split at the gym I have a 3 exercise routine and when my 20 kilo kettlebell arrives I’ll have ‘2’ 3 exercise routines. I’m sure I’ll mix it up when I feel able however my message to YOU is: You might need to lower the bar a little. Setting an achievable target is going to deliver much better results than setting that bar too high and never even trying.
Ideal doesn’t mean Best-Ever-AMAZING! It means the best for the situation you’re facing right now.
Let’s finish today with 3 recommendations that I’m super grateful for.
- The amazing equipment free workouts (or even home equipment like a sneaker, a pot or toilet paper!) that are flooding my Instagram feed right now. I’ll link to a few of my fav Instagram accounts putting out fab free content in the show notes (via strongbodygreenplanet.com just search the show title) home.abs | nimai_delgado | kaisafit.
If you’re after a more personalized approach you might be a fit for my online personal training. Thankfully plenty of my Sydney clients are jumping on board and we do it through a pretty awesome app with videos, tracking, nutrition etc. Email me via email@example.com if you’d like more details.
- My mums fabulous cooking – especially her mushroom and bean burgers and corn fritters.All #plantstrong of course! For a bit of fun my online personal training clients are going to get access to a new recipe each week and an equipment free finisher that relates to that recipe. So this week it’s “Annie Galli’s Bean and Mushroom Burgers” and a “BEANS’ finisher which I want to share with you too. If you’re new to finishers, I like to throw them in at the end of a workout to really get your heart rate up for that cardio effect within a strength session and to really “finish you off”! Here’s what BEANS looks like (of course it could also be a stand alone workout):
B. Burpee. 20 repetitions.
E. Elbow to knee, hip dip, toe tap.(a core move from a side plank position) 10 repetitions each side.
A. Alternating reverse lunge.20 repetitions.
N. Narrow stance squat.20 repetitions if bodyweight. 10 repetitions if you have dumbbells or a kettlebell and can add a neutral grip shoulder press.
S. Single leg body weight deadlift. 10 repetitions each side.
Aim for 2-4 circuits.
- Music! If you find you’re consuming too much news or other heavy content it can be a welcome relief to just listen to some daggy old tunes! Actually whatever music you love, however you know how music is so fab at transporting you back to another time? That’s pretty welcome right now. I’ve been loving some 80’s playlists via both Spotify and YouTube and also some of the club and dance of the early 2000’s back when I used to hit the clubs and dance!
That’s it for today. As mentioned previously, I Intend to upload a Monday Motivation show for as long as I think it might be helpful… so if you like the sound of that and found this the least bit helpful or calming please let me know via an iTunes review or just as awesomely, please share the show with anyone else who might value it.
Till next time, remember Creating a body and life you love is Freedom. (If this ex-carb queen, non genetically gifted, naturally uncoordinated vegan chick can do it – so can YOU!!!)
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