I’m pretty sure that everyone who reads this blog wants to improve their performance? If not … I have no idea why you’re on here!
When it comes to performance most athletes really only think about the training aspect. What this session is going to do for me come race day.
Training is a HUGE piece of the performance puzzle.
However… a very large percentage of you are limiting your potential because each training session is started with a body that is not primed.
A friend of mine in the fitness industry John Romaniello currently has some 30 Day Hardcore Challenge going on, which really doesn’t interest me – but he recently added a post about the challenge and developing habits with a quick easy daily morning routine that builds positively on your fitness pillars.
These pillars are: training, nutrition, and lifestyle.
That got me thinking about my everyday morning ritual and why I do and why you should too.
Here’s my three:
1. Wake UP with water then ‘nutrition’ routine
3. Daily Gratitude
Simple. These three things take me no longer than 10 minutes, and they make my life better in lots of ways and can make yours better too.
Lets have a look at each of them…
LIQUID GOLD + NUTRITION:
The first thing I do after waking up is to take some nutritional steps to keep me healthy. These steps can help you shed some weight if that is needed, but increase your health and immunity.
Here’s what I do
1. Wash my face in cold as possible water. This wakes you up, refreshes you and starts the process of getting your brain synapses firing. It feels great and really sets the tone and gets you started off on the right foot.
2. Water! Lets face it, most humans walk around in a dehydrated state and athletes fit this bill too. All you need to do is drink some water and this should be the second thing you do in the morning (after washing your face).
– I start the day with a good 300-500ml of fresh filtered water that has about 1/2 tsp of Himalayan Salt (being fat adapted means you don’t hold on to sodium like you do on a highly inflammatory refined carb diet), juice from a good sized wedge of lemon and a little touch of apple cider vinegar. This is a quick and easy way to further increase the firing of synapses in the brain, get you hydration kick started, encourage a better PH level for your digestive system along with helping some other basic immune functions.
3. After I do that I then re-fill my glass with a little more filter water and throw in some greens powder. Here in Australia I love Bare Blends Greens, in the US/Canada Athletic Greens is a great go to. This is basically an insurance policy of not getting enough micronutrients in. Being a modern day endurance athlete we also have high levels of oxidative stress and free radicals we need to mop up. And again like adding lemon and ACV, the greens will help increase immunity and aid in digestion.
#HITRESET: Your neural wake up call
This is such a simple and effective way to unbind your body, fix achey joints or muscles, improve energy and restore movement. I first learnt about this back in early 2013 at a marketing event of all places with one of the attendees Geoff Neupert of Original Strength and have effectively done it daily since and I recommend you do the same.
This 3 minute routine is so simple and effective that it will prime your body for the day ahead, making you feel great and even make your subsequent training more effective.
These RESET movements will help unlock neural pathways, creating better connections between the brain and the muscles. They help remove waste from the system and open up tight joints. Probably the best thing about these simple patterns is that they retain important parts of our brain that have become dormant through lack of use. This helps lift the brain fog that can exist when you are battling with fatigue.
Perform 20 cross-crawls nice and slowly.
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Perform segmental rolls from side to side, and from limb to limb. Perform 3 complete rolls from each limb both upper and lower body. When doing upper body dont use your legs to assist you and visa-versa.
Upper Body Hint: Look where you want to go.
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3. Neck Nods
Perform 10 neck nods slowly. Look right up to the sky.. way further then I am in this picture and then chin to chest. Nice and slow.
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Perform 10 repetitions.
After the first 5 reps, spread your knees a little further apart and perform 5 more repetitions
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Perform 20 baby crawl steps exactly as you did as a baby learning to move.
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LIFESTYLE: Be grateful .. this missing link to be #moreawesome
The darkest hour is just before sunrise! If you know anything about atoms they’e either positively or negatively charged and they permeate everything in life.
This may sound a little out there or new age hippy crap but it’s not. Many of us walk around focusing on all the things we don’t have or all the problems we have. We unknowingly create a negative environment which can subconsciously seep into all aspects of life and greatly sabotage what we consciously want to achieve.
Anyone reading this post actually has a lot to be grateful for. We have so many opportunities open to us and have so many things to be grateful for. Being grateful for this creates a much more internal positive environment which then expresses itself in a more positive external environment. How will manifest the more awesome stuff.
Why gratitude works. By being grateful, giving thanks to what we do have and when people do things for us it increases our self worth and that increases our satisfaction with life. When we’re grateful for the things and people around us we feel more connected and having gratitude for our friends, family and loved ones it creates social connections and having these social connections increases our happiness.
Look at it this way. Our brains are these giant filters that can only take in so much of the billions of pieces of information hitting us. But when we consciously practice gratitude we start to only take in the information that really is a blessing. So when we habitually put out there what we’re grateful for we start to not see the life hassles that are coming at us. To illustrate this point .. there was a study done where grad students had to play tetras (that good ole falling blocks computer game) for hours upon hours. What happened after this intense focus on rectangular blocks is that the students started seeing rectangular blocks in all other areas of life. Or have you ever wanted a specific car and all of a sudden you start seeing that car make everywhere… This is because you’re now more aware of that information coming at you.
So basically this is how gratitude really works. We consciously count our blessings (this is not religious) in one arena of life and then we start to see them everywhere else.
Having gratitude is very powerful and WILL change your life.
I use an online app from http://www.fiveminutejournal.com/ to do my morning and night gratitude.
That’s it … 3 major things that if you do habitually will all have massive life changing positive effects for you. So my challenge to you is do this for the next 30 days and see what happens. Don’t promise me you’ll do them … promise yourself.