As a nutritionist and mum of 3, our mornings can be fairly chaotic, but there are a few key things that are non-negotiables in my morning and keep my winter wellbeing in check. I make sure that I keep these things simple, and achievable because “done is better than perfect” …or in this instance, overwhelmed by a morning to-do list that no one feels they can achieve.
- Start the day with 2x glasses warm water, where possible filtered or pre boiled. In Winter and when it’s cooler generally it’s easy to let your hydration levels slip. Starting the day with around 400-500ml water (even 1 glass is better than none though) however is an easy box to tick first thing. Remember that water is an important part of the blood which is responsible for transporting nutrients around our body, it’s also vital for healthy detoxification via the kidneys and when we sweat. Hydrating first thing is a great way to support so many components of our health, whilst also delaying the consumption of caffeine of course too!
- Stay consistent on weekdays with rising early and getting movement in. This is my self-care time and something I discuss with my partner and family, as a priority for my well-being, but of course will differ person to person, or family to family. It never happens at the tail end for me, I’m a combination of exhausted and the ‘dinner-parent’ (play to your strengths in our house!). What’s important here though and what I want to remind people is that whether it’s first thing in the morning or at lunch, or if you’re energised in the evening, allocating time for movement is an important part of your health and well being. If that doesn’t get you moving still, I remind people that movement is a privilege, you don’t have to do it, you get to. (And that generally gets them going)
- Refuel within 30 minutes to 1 hour of exercise with a nutrient dense breakfast. I personally have to pay close attention to this one! It’s easy to get caught in the rush of the morning and delay breakfast, but I know that when I do eat immediately after training or within the same window of time each morning that my energy levels improve for the rest of the day. And, importantly, I’m not pushing my body into a state of ‘fight or flight’ mode activating the sympathetic nervous system, which responds to stress, and lack of food can be perceived by our bodies as stress. I love love love my recent Winter creation – this delicious Quinoa Berry and Manuka Honey Breakfast Bowl as my nourishing fuel for the morning. I can prepare the quinoa for a few days worth of breakfasts and then add extras on the morning I eat it. There’s a full recipe below.
- Take supplements in the morning, which is when I always remember to take them! Just like exercise, supplements can be forgotten if they’re left until the close of the day, so I ensure mine are present to start. I activate my morning and Winter wellbeing with a teaspoon of Capilano Manuka Honey 300+, which is 100% Australian Honey and contains anti-inflammatory, antibacterial and wound healing properties. It’s actually the easiest to take because it’s DELICIOUS too, and when I take mine, the kids have theirs – big ole family event! I also take a few other supplements which are unique to my needs at this stage of life and then I know they’re all in and supporting my health for the day and of course for the long term too.
- Create a few minutes to settle the nervous system and ground the body before starting my work day. Literally a few minutes is all I need before work to do this. I take big belly breaths or do a simple meditation which helps to calm the nervous system and give me better clarity on what needs to be done. If you’ve ever chased time in the morning, or have a similar morning and juggle things to be done to make it all happen then you’d likely know how easily it is to feel frantic, and trying to clear your head to move into work mode can feel intense. This practice really calms the body and mind.
WINTER QUINOA BREAKFAST BOWL WITH CAPILANO MANUKA HONEY
Gluten free / Dairy Free / Vegetarian
2 ½ cups cooked quinoa
200ml soy milk or your choice of milk
2 teaspoons Capilano Manuka Honey MGO 30+
2 teaspoons sesame
2 teaspoons chia seeds
1 cup frozen berries (140g), defrosted or warmed in microwave
1 diced plum or apple
2 tablespoons pomegranate seeds
Cook quinoa according to package directions, then divide evenly between 2 bowls. Pour over milk of choice and drizzle with Capilano Manuka Honey MGO 30+. Sprinkle with sesame and chia seeds, then top with berries, diced plum and pomegranate. Serve as is or mix to combine and see all the beautiful rich berry hues come to life!
* This is a partnered post with Capilano Honey, all thoughts and opinions expressed are the author’s own.