What’s Your Morning Routine?

This content was created by the National Sleep Foundation


Check out this advice from industry pros on how to kick-start your day to ensure better sleep.

It’s 7:00am—what are you doing? Hopefully, you’re practicing one of the following morning routines that health experts, CEOs, and more use. Not only do these routines boost your overall wellbeing, but they can actually improve your sleep at the end of the day. Read on for tips on how you can make their habits work for you.

Have a Regular Wake-Up Time.

Scott Weiss, a New York City physical therapist and trainer who has worked with the National Football League and gymnast Kerry Strugg, sets his alarm for the same time every morning—whether or not he actually has to be up for work at that hour.

Why It Works: Your body’s internal clock loves a good routine. If you sleep in—even for just a couple of days—you can throw off your internal clock and make it harder to fall asleep.

Start the Day with Stretches.

Denise Austin, a fitness trainer in Los Angeles, California, and the creator of the 10-week 360 health and fitness plan energizes herself in the morning with three minutes of stretching.

Why It Works: Easing into the day with relaxing stretches doesn’t just feel good. Women who stretch for 15 minutes daily actually improve their sleep by 30 percent. Try arm circles when you wake up, which are one of Denise’s favorite moves: Stand up and circulate your arms backwards, then forwards.

Grab a Healthy Breakfast.

Gabrielle Redford, the executive health editor of AARP’s magazine and website in Washington, D.C., starts her day with one or two cups of coffee and the same breakfast of cereal with milk and berries.

Why It Works: People who eat well are also more likely to sleep well. Start your day with a nutritious breakfast and follow Redford’s advice and don’t overdo it on coffee. Too much may actually interfere with your ability to head to dreamland come 11:00pm.

Work Up A Sweat.

After sipping on a latte and checking her email, Kara Goldin, founder and CEO of Hint water in San Francisco, California, heads out the doors with her dogs to hike a few miles.

Why It Works: When it comes to exercise, the early bird gets the worm, er, better sleep. People who exercise in the a.m. for at least three-and-a-half hours a week have less trouble falling asleep. (Bonus: You’re more likely to stick to your exercise routine if you schedule your workouts for the morning.)