Today is the first day of the balance of our lives – duh.
With that established – one could optimistically consider each rise and shine as a wake-up call.
Hopefully your morning wake-up was unassisted. You awoke because you were rested after restorative , not because an alarm shook you out of slumber.
After just a bit of mindful time with your feet on deck, how is your resting heart rate(rhr)? If more than 10-12 beats higher than your recent normal “rhr” this advent may be a fine day to taper your activity. If your rhr is elevated by those double digit beats per minute – you probably over-trained, under-hydrated or got a bug.
- Listen and note those thumps of life. And then workout or taper accordingly.
A few Good morning stretches to our rising sun or easterly compass point are primo for your posterior muscle and joint chains.
(thanks Walter 🙂 – https://goo.gl/images/pLKQvt )
Couple those posterior chain stretches with deep stomach breathing and you should almost be ready for 86,400 seconds of joie de vivre.
Un-kink your spine, with some gentle twists, or reverse wood chop movements.
Definitely get down for hip raises for your hip flexors / psoas muscle. Those hip flexors are the only skeletal muscles that connect your upper and lower body halves – so working them daily is very important.
* Be grateful in rain or shine, cool or warm temperatures, weekend or weekday rhythms.
Linger for a few minutes to appreciate heavenly bodies when you pick up your morning paper. Catch a glimpse of a shooting stat, if today is a lucky day. Is the International Space Station slow- walking across your horizon? Imagine how those astronauts and cosmonauts are exercising in space to maintain their bone density. Imagine how your CrossFit plyometrics would do on our moon or in earthly orbit. Wowza.
As you scan the sports pages, fave comic strips and other columns (if you receive daily news in-print); be grateful that you have clean water, good air to breathe and safe conditions in which to be out and about. Others in our news stories are not as fortunate.
Whether you are a morning person, or not; each circadian advent is something to be cherished.
Inside our bodily temples, millions of our 200 million billion cells are replicating for our lifespan and growth.
An median average baby boomer will involuntarily and thankfully pulse his or her ticker 72000- 80000 beats a day. Thank your left ventricle for pumping fuel and oxygen to each of your trillions of cells.
Breaking the fast – at some point is healthy as our blood glucose levels dropped overnight to fuel our brains (nominally ~600 calories worth for a good sleep of 5-8 hours).
Breakfast, to this New Englander who ardently believe in breaking the fast- should be preceded by 12-16 ounces of filtered lemon water.
- Figure out your way to ingest 25-40 grams of protein and use this first meal of your day as your top carbohydrate/fiber meal. Right – Enjoy your Breakfasts as a king or queen. Look forward to your mid-day meal as a prince or princess. And anticipate an early, light dinner as a “pauper”. Studies tell us that we should strive for 11-14 hours of regular overnight “fasting” for good reason.
What about a dawn workout?
Once a week, I do my low intensity cardio workout in a fasting condition.If you can handle such intermittent fasts more often – go for them. Our bodies are better for those periods of intermittent fasts.
On my other morning workout days, I’ll break my fast with ~80 calories of “okay” higher glycemic index food- perhaps a youngish/not-too-ripe banana, or a slice of Ezekiel or whole grain toast. Then let your sweat roll as you convert cached energy to power and “work”. We evolved to breathe, move and power up. Thus should it be for each of us in modern times – five to six days each and every week.
- What can you do for your bodily and mental temple to make this first day of the rest of your life special?
If it is a challenge day for resistance or cardiovascular training, try to celebrate those micro-tears in skeletal muscle which help youthfulness.
If it is a race day or a day for upping your personal best in a gym, journal your accomplishment and pat yourself on the back for getting it done. You’ve invested the time and talent to get that done and celebrate…
Celebrate the grit, sweat and effort to tear down to build-up.
That stated, it is pretty darned important to offset those oxidative free radicals which serious exercise induces at our cellular levels. That means lotsa COLOR foods in your snacks and meals. This means slowly eating plant-based, micro-nutrient-rich food articles (low GI) to absorb phyto-nutrients while moderating spikes in your morning/mid-day blood glucose.
Isn’t it ironic that “healthy” exercise generates oxidative free radicals- as do unhealthy habits of work-induced stress, excess sun exposure and smoking EVIL weeds?
We need oxygen(obviously) – yet not all oxygen is good for our constitutions. Those “rusting” free radical variants of O2 are truly evil so we must offset them- else harmful inflammation builds. Be a Colorful devourer of berries, vegetables and fruits.
If you are a boomer worker- how playful can you make your livelihood?
– Can you bound up those workplace stairs, and/or walk briskly from the distant parking lot?
– How about leading fresh air “stand up” meetings?
Are you standing regularly and often (with belly button pressed to spine). If you have to sit- are you stretching in all three body planes, taking breaks from evil screen time and averting repetitive stress (carpal tunnel or wrist tendinitis).
Are you celebrating with wholesome sustenance for lunch? Or, if today is your “off the reservation” break for fast casual dining – will you sensibly watch portion control and avert “most” empty calories?
Some say an 80-20 rule or guideline for dietary diligence is realistic. No use fretting for occasional or celebratory breaks. Some variety can be good for your amazing dietary and wellness “system.”
Celebrate today’s awakening. Be well and make the most of your 86,400 seconds and 72,000 or so heartbeats in your excellent Advent(ure).