If exercising first thing in the morning isn’t your thing, start small with a brisk walk around the block, short yoga flow, or even just 15 jumping jacks.
Have you ever noticed that some mornings you feel more groggy than usual and it’s just harder to get yourself out of bed? If so, you’ve experienced the highly common phenomenon of sleep inertia. This uncomfortable feeling can make it difficult to get a jump on the day and leave you feeling sleepy, less alert, and with slower reaction times. Fortunately, there are a few strategies to beat the sluggishness and banish sleep inertia. Here are five great ones to start with.
- Open your shades. When it comes to our circadian rhythms, light is a powerful force. Before electricity, daylight and darkness regulated our sleep schedules, so opening up those shades to let the morning light in is an automatic signal to your internal clock that it’s time to start the day.
- Wash your face. Setting up a consistent morning routine is a great way to tell your body and mind when it’s time to wake up with physical cues. Washing your face is a great habit to incorporate as the water helps invigorate your senses. One small study found that of many different tried strategies, face washing was the most effective way for participants to feel more awake after a nap.
- Drink coffee before your nap. This one is less helpful when it comes to a full night’s rest, but if you’re feeling groggy after a nap, try drinking a cup of coffee or another type of caffeine before you fall asleep. This way the caffeine kicks in while you rest and you wake up alert and ready to go.
- Play music. Music is a powerful tool and can get us feeling energized with just the press of a ‘play’ button. Set up a wake-up playlist you love with tunes that will get you excited to start the day.
- Exercise! Sweat, elevated heart rate, and endorphins are all effective for boosting energy levels, and exercise gives you all three! If exercising first thing in the morning isn’t your thing, start small with a brisk walk around the block, short yoga flow, or even just 15 jumping jacks.