Starting your day: Moves for the Morning.

As an endurance athlete in my 20’s and early 30’s, would simply wake up and throw on some fitness garbs before I hit the ground running, biking, swimming or the desk for that matter.  Even now at 37 this would probably be just fine most of the time.  However, why let this aggressive approach to a my morning be status-quo?

Over the last several months, with the help of my Tai Chi teacher, I have adopted a much more mild approach to my morning movement:

First of all, I always try to wake up a about 10 minutes before I think I need to.  This gives me time to engage in some relaxed dynamic movement that will transition me from my slumber to the first activity of the day.  Lately my first activity involves delivering the little one’s to school fed, happy and on time.

As soon as I make it out to the family room after waking up I move the body around.  I start with rolling my neck around in light circles.  Then I do the same circular type movements with my ankles, knees, hips and shoulders.  Finally I do some light flexion, rotation and extension of my torso.

Then I choose from  one of my chi-gong or tai chi forms to give attentiveness to my movement, my body and my breathing. For me this can be as simple as slow mindful walking where I concentrate on how my weight feels over each foot step, the rolling motion of my walk, or how my breath feels.  If I have time, I might practice an entire Tai Chi, Chi Gong or Kung Fu form.  Although I think Tai Chi and similar martial arts can be great for everyone, I could see some light stretching or even walking the dog being very similar to my practices.

The end result is a more awake self with greater capablities at the very beginning of each day.  I am certainly no expert on waking up but being more attentive to our movements in the morning seems very sensible so I am going to stick with it and I hope you’ll join me!

Written by

Head Coach of TriEndurance. CSCS Strength and Conditioning Coach, Former Pro-Triathlete and current Endurance Enthusiast competing in short and long distance (on or off-road) cycling events.