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The First Thing You Need To Do Each Morning!

The first thing you Need to do each morning

Today I want to discuss the first thing you need to do each morning. 

Do you grudgingly roll over and hit the snooze on your alarm first thing in the morning? Do you jump up and head for the coffee and then the shower? I want to ask each of you to begin your day with a simple activity that will take a limited amount of time but will also change the course of the day. Rather than immediately rush towards your day, take a few minutes to stretch your muscles.  Stretching is an activity anyone can and needs to do regardless of physical health. It is specifically important to stretch your muscles first thing in the morning as you have spent the night curled up or in a multitude of positions (especially if you find yourself sharing the bed with children or animals). I give stretching as homework to each of my clients regardless of the reason they are coming to see me. Stretching releases tension from the muscles and allows one to maintain range of motion. Our bodies hold the emotional and physical stress of our days and without a few simple stretches, we find ourselves with neck and shoulder issues and back pains. Stretching simple feels good! It requires no specific equipment and you need to make it the first thing you do each morning as it will enable you to be more balanced as you start your day. Think you have no time in the morning to stretch? Take a clue from our pets and consider the first thing a cat or dog does after taking a nap or sleeping for awhile. Instinctively, an animal will stretch before taking a step. Sadly, humans have allowed the stress of time crunch to override the instinctively need to stretch. Make stretching a part of your morning routine and don’t forget to add it throughout the day.  I begin each day stretching my legs and arms before getting out of the bed. It feels good to move my muscles and helps me appreciate what they do for me. You can find examples of  5 simple yoga poses to try in this MindBodyGreen post or this article stretching for beginners.  When all else fails do simple shoulder rolls, stretch your arms over your head and then reach for the ground. Self Care includes simple daily activities which should always include stretching. Before jumping out of bed, take a minute to stretch your body.

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Self care Saturday

Self Care Saturday is a weekly series offering tips and suggestions for daily self care.



  1. The Girl Next Door is Black on May 16, 2015 at 3:07 pm

    Good advice. I stretch in the mornings as part of my workout and I can definitely tell a difference on the days when I don’t! I just feel creakier and I get random strains.

    • Sheryl @ How to Make a Life on May 17, 2015 at 7:47 pm

      I’m so glad you already have this as part of your routine. I’m always shocked at the number of people who forget to do it. Yea for you!!!

  2. Mar on May 16, 2015 at 7:25 pm

    Great advice. I’ve started to do yoga every Tuesday morning, which is the start of my work week. I have to admit, getting up at 5am to make it to my 7am class is actually amazing. Not only does the yoga make me feel good the rest of the day, being outside at 530am when the city is completely quiet is just what I need.

    • Sheryl @ How to Make a Life on May 17, 2015 at 7:42 pm

      I agree with you Mar. The world is a different place in the early morning. I am making 5:30 my routine for getting up and working out and I feel the same way as you.

  3. Anastasia Amour on May 16, 2015 at 8:46 pm

    Great advice – I really notice a positive difference in my back pain and overall mood when I stretch first thing 🙂 xx

    • Sheryl @ How to Make a Life on May 17, 2015 at 7:37 pm

      It’s such an easy thing for each of us to do but it’s often one of the things we forget to do. It does instantly improve your mood.

  4. Jess Hnatiuk on May 16, 2015 at 9:02 pm

    Amen to this!!! Sometimes, stretching is all I can do for my physical activity on the bad days… but it feels great! Instant mood lifter!

    • Sheryl @ How to Make a Life on May 17, 2015 at 7:34 pm

      I know! There have been days when I didn’t realize how tight my muscles were until I started (or attempted) to stretch.

  5. on May 17, 2015 at 7:58 am

    i am so trying this!!

  6. Daisy @ Simplicity Relished on May 17, 2015 at 6:29 pm

    I needed to read this! I’ve gotten into the horrible habit of reading the New York Times when I wake up– and while I’ll continue reading the news, I don’t want to do it first thing in the morning!

    • Sheryl @ How to Make a Life on May 17, 2015 at 7:32 pm

      I’m so glad this helped Daisy, just remember to start your stretches before you get out of bed. When I’m short on time I do a few yoga poses especially child’s pose and then I can move on. Our bodies deserve it!

  7. Emily @ Ember Grey. on May 18, 2015 at 1:23 pm

    I agree with this completely, Sheryl! I try and do this before I go to bed and then when I wake up but definitely need to make it a part of my routine and not just when I remember 😉

    • Sheryl @ How to Make a Life on May 21, 2015 at 10:38 am

      Stretching is so easy to forget to do as we often just jump out of bed and get started with the day. I don’t always spend a large amount of time doing it but I certainly try to “wake” my body up.

  8. Caroline @ In Due Time on May 20, 2015 at 10:05 am

    I need to be better about stretching! I work out every morning and LOVE foam rolling, but need to stretch more!

    • Sheryl @ How to Make a Life on May 21, 2015 at 10:40 am

      I had an instructor who ended each class with what she called “our treat for your body”. It made the intense work out worth it but I was always surprised at the number of people who left early. Just remember your stretches don’t have to take a long period of time.

  9. Alexis @ Chemistry Cachet on May 21, 2015 at 7:42 am

    This is so true! With RA, it is the only way I can get the day going! Stretching for about 45 minutes helps me get going 🙂

    • Sheryl @ How to Make a Life on May 21, 2015 at 10:48 am

      I am sure it is so beneficial to you! I believe that most chronic illnesses benefit from some form of a stretching routine.

  10. Crystal @ Dreams, etc. on May 9, 2016 at 10:45 pm

    I’ve recently started to stretch a lot throughout the day. Not for long periods, but quick stretches feel really good when I’ve been working at the computer for awhile. I don’t stretch in the morning though, but I should. That will be my goal for tomorrow. 🙂 I’ll take a cue my pup.

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