We've heard it all (and probably tried it all) before. Every time the holidays roll around, we encounter the same New Year's resolutions: work out more, eat healthier food, sleep eight hours a night, and take more time for ourselves. While those are all great things to incorporate into our lives, these broad goals rarely stick in the long run.
POPSUGAR spoke with Ridge Davis, a personal trainer based in West Hollywood, CA, who laid out one simple yet specific New Year's resolution that will help you achieve all your fitness goals — and have your healthiest year yet. "A great New Year's resolution is waking up 30 minutes earlier and establishing a morning routine consisting of five habits to prepare your mind and body for the day ahead," he explained. By adding an extra half hour to your day, you'll be able to accomplish so much more and set yourself up for all the challenges (and joys!) that are ahead of you.
"Having a go-to routine that triggers you to mentally and physically focus will be a catalyst for great things to happen throughout your day," Ridge continued. "Once your initial five habits become ingrained after three months in your routine, you can switch to another five habits." By setting new goals for yourself every three months, you ensure that you don't plateau and that you keep growing and improving yourself.
These are the five morning habits Ridge recommends you start off 2018 with.
Drink 1 Glass of Water With Lemon Juice and Apple Cider Vinegar
Your body is in need of some hydration after a long night's sleep. Before you do anything, drink a tall glass of water with a splash of fresh lemon juice and apple cider vinegar. Lemon juice stimulates your digestive tract, aids in weight loss, and balances your body's pH levels. Similarly, apple cider vinegar has immunity-boosting properties and provides you with a burst of natural energy. You'll be well on your way to a strong day — or a strong workout.
Journal Your Goals and Intentions For the Day
Studies have shown that journaling reduces stress and anxiety, and it's a great way to express a lot of emotions that you're not able to let out in your day-to-day life. Your mental health is just as important as your physical health, and when you spend a few minutes writing down your intentions for the day, it's as if you've just given your brain a solid workout.
Putting a good amount of nourishment in your body in the morning is a surefire way to rev up your metabolism and give you all the sustenance you need for a good workout later. Dr. Luiza Petre, board-certified cardiologist and weight-management specialist, told POPSUGAR, "Breakfast immediately raises the body's energy level and restores the blood glucose level to normal after an overnight fast. It also raises the muscle and liver glycogen stores." Additionally, Dr. Petre pointed out that "breakfast lowers the blood level of the stress hormone cortisol immediately, which peaks during the early morning hours."
Read Something Motivational For 15 Minutes
Whether it's a book, an article, or something you found on Instagram, Ridge says you can get a lot of benefit from focusing on something inspiring for a few minutes each morning. Read something that will motivate you, encourage you, and make you feel like you can accomplish anything.
Spend 10 Minutes Stretching or Meditating
We could all use some more flexibility and mindfulness in our lives. Set aside 10 minutes every morning to either stretch, especially those parts of the body that are especially stiff, or spend a few minutes doing a meditation or breathing exercise. Not only will this help you feel physically and mentally clearer throughout the day, but you will also be ready to tackle a tough workout later on.