6 Benefits of early morning yoga and how to get out of bed!
Your alarm is going off at 4:30 and you’re not sure why! It says time for yoga! So you crawl out of bed and take a great big stretch, jump in a cold shower and put on your comfiest yoga clothes. You grab a banana and some tea and head off into the early morning. When you arrive at Akasha the darkness is already fading and there’s incense lit with the windows open letting in fresh morning air. You begin your sun salutations and soon the sun outside salutes you too. As you inhale deeply and stretch your arms toward the sky you rise with the rest of the outside world. Your inner world is at ease and peace, no thoughts or worries from your day just yet. By the time you get out of Savasana and walk outside, you’re practically floating, nothing can ruin your mood today. And just like that, you’re set, prepared to meet whatever may come your way that day with a positive, happy, peaceful mind and a fully vitalized body.
Does this sound good? I thought so. So why is it that so many excuses arise before we can do something as good as this for our personal wellbeing? “There’s no time!” we say. Well there is, you’re just usually sleeping through it. A sacrifice like this will mean exactly that, making some sacrifices. Getting to bed earlier is one of them because your 6-8 hours of sleep is equally as important. Harvard Business Review actually states that “people whose performance peaks in the morning are more proactive than people who are at their best in the evening”. Thus, being up earlier can make you more productive throughout your day! So that’s one great benefit of waking up early, the other is that now you have time for your yoga! Then, your morning yoga routine has many of its own benefits to provide you with. What a delicious domino effect of goodness, all for you!
What can early morning yoga do for you?
1) Moving your body will help to wake you up!
Morning yoga can serve as your caffeine alternative, or not. Either way, you find the willpower to get out of your bed and get dressed, and yoga will do the rest. You will feel, awake, revived and rejuvenated for the rest of the day!
2) Improve your sleep.
In order to wake up earlier you’ll have to go to sleep earlier to ensure your required 6-8 hours of sleep. For the best sleep Dr. Matt Walker, head of the Sleep and Neuroimaging Lab at the University of California, Berkeley says get to bed before midnight! The hours before 12am are when the most restorative sleep occurs. Yoga also increases the production of melatonin, a hormone that improves and regulates your sleep.
3) Set good habits.
If mornings aren’t your thing, waking up early can be really challenging. Having a routine helps significantly. If you’re able to endure the struggle at first, the result would be a healthy habit that makes it so much easier in the long run because anything done routinely begins to feel and happen naturally. This then opens the door to making other good choices throughout your day.
4) Rev your digestion and metabolism for the rest of the day.
Many yoga poses we come across regularly in class aid in improving your digestion and metabolism. Twists such as revolved triangle and twisted chair pose stimulate your stomach organs, waking them up and getting them going. All balance poses, including tree and warrior 3 involve abdominal muscles that work to increase metabolism
5) Clear your mind.
Practicing yoga mindfully and focusing on your breath leaves little space for all the other usual thoughts to flow through your mind. You can leave the studio with a clear, calm mind ready to tackle the day ahead of you.
So, are you ready to gain all these benefits through an early morning practice?! Go to bed earlier, place your alarm device far away from your bed, leave a crack open in your curtains so the morning light shines in, have a cold shower and get going! Your body and your mind will thank you. Join us at Akasha for Greet the Day Yoga on Fridays at 6:00am.