With winter approaching, the days grow shorter it can be a struggle to get up and get going, and this can affect our hormone balance. I have some super simple tips to share with you on how to have more energy in the morning and keep your circadian rhythm healthy even when waking up in the dark. (Without coffee!)
First up, get sunlight in your naked eyes!
Yes, even in the cold months! Get out of bed and before you pick up your phone or do anything else, bundle up and step outside into whatever sun is happening. Even on cold and cloudy days, sunlight helps you to have more energy in the morning and will also help you get to sleep at night. What should you do if you wake up crazy early in the dark? You might consider artificial daylight to help you wake up and stimulate daytime hormones. A cheap idea? Get a Halogen Work-Lamp! It offers 500 Watts of true full-spectrum light that includes red and infrared to balance out the blue! Using it to light up your room in the mornings can significantly boost wakefulness!
Red Light at Night
So, it gets dark at like 5:00 in some places and it’s really tempting to go inside and turn on ALL the lights. But, fluorescent and white LED lights are unbalanced in blue light and add flicker to the room. These totally sap your energy and are horrible for your eyes. Instead, invest in some wearable blue light blockers and look into red light panels to enjoy your evenings by. Also, I love that Gembared panels are a perfect supplement to natural sunlight during winter months. Their panels give me a dose of red and near-infrared light which targets the mitochondria of the cells to boost ATP production. In plain language, this means your cells literally have more energy!
Move Your Body in the Morning
Going out for a brisk short walk can do more for your energy in the morning than any energy drink that exists. And exercising outdoors will help you to feel awake because of the cold, fresh air. Movement brings circulation to your body, gets your hear pumping and tells your body to make wake-up hormones like cortisol. Which, yes, you do want to rise in the am. Bonus, you can stand outside barefoot and get some awesome grounding in, which has it’s own amazing benefits to your energy levels! (How to do this in super cold places? You can leave a box on the ground that you uncover in order to expose snow-free earth. Or, pour a kettle of hot water on the ground to melt it! Crazy ideas? I’m that serious about how good grounding is!)
Eat to Boost Your Energy in the Morning
Next, you have to fuel your body if you want to have energy. No more surviving on black coffee alone until noon! Breakfast should be a high protein meal combined with healthy carbs and fat. I love starting out with my yolky raw milk drink, and I usually add in adaptogens to boost my immune system and energy levels. If your usual breakfast is coffee and sugary stuff you’re just setting yourself up for a blood sugar crash. Because blood sugar crash = energy crash! Especially focus on quality protein (at least 20 grams!), carbs that are packed with minerals such as ripe fruit, and saturated fat like grass-fed butter.
Say No To Caffeine
Coffee? No, don’t do it! Unless you know your body is actually ready for consuming it. Read more about exactly why here. Are you hooked on coffee? And, is it working? Or are you reading this looking for a better answer? Chronic consumption of caffeine (in an imbalanced body) can lead to HPA axis dysfunction (adrenal fatigue), hormone imbalance and sluggish digestion. Not to mention, it interferes with the absorption of both magnesium and B-vitamins. Both of which are crucial for optimal hormone health. The better answer is to make sure you’re getting plenty of minerals in daily, eating well to fuel your body and honoring your circadian rhythm.
To Wake Up With More Energy, Go To Bed
Finally, staying up late watching movies or scrolling your phone is not what your brain needs to wake up refreshed and energized. Set a bedtime (before 10 pm, please) and then stick to it. Going to bed at the same time and waking at the same time will help your body to have a normal sleep-wake cycle. Even in the darker months. And be on guard about blue light, flicker, and EMF. These things seriously affect your sleep. You can get an awesome kill switch that allows you to turn everything off at night so you can enjoy better sleep.
If circadian rhythm fascinates you and you want to know more, I cover this exact topic (among many others!) in my Bare Naked Hormones Course, which teaches you how to balance your hormones!