Most people leave the first 60 minutes of their morning to chance and miss out on starting the day the best way possible, but as a biohacker you can significantly improve your day with very little effort.
Biohack these 5 areas to create the best morning routine:
- Drink the right thing at the right time
- Take vitamins and supplements that work better at the start of the day (and avoid those that don’t)
- Get your body moving but only at the right intensity
- Fire up your mind in the right way to maximise focus, memory and creativity
- Avoid things that will make your day less effective
We’ll cover the specific details of each of these biohack areas, but in simple terms, they’re all designed to deliver significant, measurable results for the body and mind all day and night, and are based on scientific principles.
These biohacks are also flexible enough to give you what you need personally, because everybody’s unique and therefore you must have a bespoke but guided morning routine – what works for one person isn’t necessarily perfect for you.
Which brings us to the first thing to be aware of…
When biohacking your morning routine, get to know what’s right for you, not what somebody tells you is right – you know your body and mind better than anybody else.
And over time, even day-to-day, you, your circumstances and your goals change too, so following a completely inflexible morning routine can be detrimental.
This is why everything we’re about to go through together will set you up for the day in a mental and physical way, but bares no relation to what time a clock says it is.
You must discount the advice given by people who say you need to wake up early to “win the day” – it’s just not true.
It doesn’t matter what time you wake up, in fact forcing yourself to wake earlier or later than it naturally wants to is a mistake and will hold you back, as you’ll not be fully rested.
You also need to be in a position to take account of things like travel plans and time zones, commitments early or late in the day and even the odd night out – being a biohacker with a morning routine takes account of real life.
You may be a 5am morning person, but maybe you’re a night owl, and waking up at 9am is better for you.
But when you wake up get out of bed, don’t hit the snooze button – this doesn’t send the right message to the body or brain.
I also suggest making you bed, it sends a clear signal to the brain that you’re up and active, there’s also a sense of being tidy and organised that sends the right message to the brain too.
And before we cover the main 5 points in detail, you should know that it’s always better to wake up naturally too, not because of and alarm clock, which isn’t always possible I know, but if you can then that’s best.
Drink the right thing at the right time
After sleep your body will be partially dehydrated, so it’s vital you drink something as soon as you wake up.
As a biohacker, you should at the very least, drink room temperature pure biohacked water.
But to really start the day off well, drink a combination of biohacked water with a squeeze of organic lemon juice and a pinch or two of Himalayan salt.
The water on its own rehydrates the body but by combining organic lemon juice and Himalayan salt you boost the body’s ability to remove toxins from the body, it helps balance the acidity in the body, boosts your immunity, it also helps control blood sugar as the morning continues.
Some people also like a coffee in the morning, and Bulletproof coffee is one regularly discussed by biohackers.
However the body is in a fasted state first thing in the morning and this has significant benefits, even if you’re not following an Intermittent Fasting (IF) diet or some form of Keto diet.
So if you want a B
Take vitamins and supplements that work better at the start of the day
Depending on your gaols, there are some vitamins and supplements that are best taken on an empty stomach and first thing, but one you should get that you needn’t take in pill or powder form is Vitamin D.
If you can get natural sunlight first thing as part of your morning routine, this will wake your body up fully as well as provide the Vitamin D it contains – yes just standing outside means you’ll be biohacking your body.
While your outside maybe take in some deep breaths too and oxygenate the blood.
Vitamin B1, B2, B3, B5, B6 and B12 can be taken early in the morning too because they give you energy.
If you’re taking CBD in oil form, this is also said to be best taken on and empty stomach.
And if you drink a detox juice or a super juice supplement like Athletic Greens, having this later in your morning routine can be beneficial as these get to work on an empty stomach.
Get your body moving but only at the right intensity
It’s really important to get the body moving first thing in the morning for several reasons.
The first benefit is that moving mobilises toxins in the body and it’s a good idea to get out of the body as soon as you can, but not through sweating.
You may go to the bathroom when you wake up, which is good for toxin removal, as is blowing your nose as this helps clear the sinuses.
Also, after movement and exercise, the digestive system should have collected and processed more waste from the body and the lower the toxin level in the body throughout the day the better it will function. So think about how even gentle movement and exercise is a way to remove toxins form the body.
The next beneficial movements depend on your health and fitness goals, but steady state cardio, at about 60% to 65% of your maximum heart rate, will help burn fat, as your body is in a fasted state, it also teaches your body to use fat as a fuel and energy.
Good examples of steady state cardio include walking, jogging not running or sprinting), using a cross trainer or doing some light rowing, as these two exercises use the whole body.
The second benefit of steady state cardio is that it warms up the body gently, it gets
You don’t want to shock the body just after it’s woken up as this causes the wrong chemicals to flow and increase stress levels. You also don’t want the body to have to work hard to repair and recover during the day if at all possible.
Another form of movement that’s beneficial is gentle functional movement exercise, this isn’t designed to increase flexibility and your range of movement, but is designed to mobilize joints, muscles and the areas that haven’t been used while you’re asleep.
A good example of a functional movement exercise is Tai Chi because it’s calm, controlled, precise, uses the whole body but doesn’t put stress on it.
It’s not a good idea to lift heavy weights first thing, unless that’s the only time you have, as the body tends to be better at moving large weight and therefore building muscle later on in the day, recovery is also best while sleeping. Y
And if you take a shower in the morning, you should incorporate this biohack – a cold shower section.
Just shower as normal and then, when you’re done, turn the temperature all the way down and stand under it for up to about 2 minutes (build up to this is you find it tough).
Cold showers have many benefits including making you more alert, improving your immune system’s effectiveness, increasing brown fat which is good fat as it stimulates weight loss, helps muscle recovery, helps you regulate your breathing and various other things too.
Fire up your mind in the right way to maximise focus, memory and creativity
Some people like to combine their exercise with their mindfulness and that’s a good way to combine separate parts of the perfect morning routine, but there are parts of this that are best to do separately.
Some people like to write a gratitude journal, others like to meditate and both are relevant to some people in their personal morning routine, but just like the body, it’s best if you warm up your mind too and to do it in a controlled way.
One thing that’s vital is to make sure you minimize the number of decisions you need to make at the start of the day, that’s part of why creating a defined, predictable morning routine is so effective as a biohack.
That discipline creates a habit and a habit removes so much cognitive energy and confusion.
Some people are better at making decisions than others, but we all have a limited decision making capacity in a 24-hour period, so you want to eliminate irrelevant decisions so as not to waste that capacity.
If you have to decide what to eat, wear, do next, what time to leave for work or even what to do first when you start your workday, you’ve already used up valuable mental, decision making capacity.
In terms of making decisions when your mind is ready, you must make them based on what’s right for you and based on your priorities. That’s why firing up somebody else’s to do list by checking email is a big mistake, it’s also why checking things like social media first thing is detrimental.
If you start to shift away from a managed, predictable day but letting others influence you, you leave things to chance and chance is no way to operate if you want success in any area of your life.
The brain is incredible and it creates all sorts of chemicals in the body so biohack it by what you do and think early in the day for optimal results too, and you don’t need to take nootropics to do this.
When you’re ready, take a few moments to focus your mind on what will make a difference to you today and then write it down – a bit like a To Do list, but one with meaning.
The best way to focus the mind is to ask questions because we can’t help but try to answer them.
So ask yourself:
Before I go to bed this evening, what has to have happened for me to be happy with my day?
And cover everything that matters, not just health, work, family or isolated aspects to the day.
The other thing is it should have some elements that are consistent and some that change over time.
Don’t look for one single answer or write down a few goals and read them out each morning as some people suggest you do, this assumes you don’t develop or change daily as a person – we all do.
Writing the answer to this also makes a big difference.
Don’t just not think, say or even type the answers, writing will trigger the brain and make it not only more “real” but also more vivid in your mind. This is also why it’s not the same as meditation, visualization or other mindfulness techniques.
Another way to approach this, which is another way to biohack the mind, is to ask yourself:
If at the end of the day I haven’t achieved what I wanted, what do I wish I’d done that I didn’t?
Many people will say be positive, not negative, especially in the morning, but it’s vital you motivate yourself and also make your mind have a future bias – seeing what should happen, not what is happening and what has happened is extremely beneficial.
Being negative is a great way to motivate yourself – we naturally want to avoid pain and it’s more effective than trying to convince yourself to take action towards good things, especially as the day progresses and decision making gets harder and outside influences get in the way.
Don’t be too hard on yourself, but after you’ve woken up your body and mind this is the time to get you priorities right and face the day with passion and determination. It’s better to think about what negative things could happen now than thinking about after they’ve happened and you’re trying to fall asleep.
I also recommend asking yourself a pre-defined set of positive questions each morning based on your goals, for example:
- What will I do today that will help me reach my fitness goal?
- What’s the single most important thing I will do today that’ll move me closer to my financial goals?
- Who will I see or speak to today that will make me happy?
- What will I learn about today that will benefit me every single day from now on?
You’ll notice these questions assume it will happen, which is important. And all the positive things are self-centred, because you need to be and any question you come up with should be too.
Being self-centred doesn’t mean you’re selfish or a bad person. Just like in an aircraft, if the oxygen masks are needed, if you don’t put your own one on first you may not be able to help others – this is the same for everyday life.
And this brings us on to the final part of the biohacked ideal morning routine.
Avoid things that will make your day less effective
We mentioned earlier about the fact you’re in a fasted state first thing in the morning and it’s advisable, even if you’re not doing intermittent fasting, to stay that way for the first 60 minutes, unless you need to regulate your blood sugar as it’s dropped too low.
By staying in a fasted state you avoid your digestive system having to work hard early in the day, as this requires significant energy, you’ll also not experience a blood sugar and energy spike.
Staying fasted helps the body wake up naturally and avoids the later blood sugar crash that most people suffer, especially if they have high sugar or carb based breakfasts.
Your goal, before you’re let loose on the world, is to have a plan that’s achievable because time can’t be recovered and any time wasted can be doubly damaging.
You’ve fired up the mind and now you know what will make the day a success and what will hold you back, so write out the not to do list.
At this point you should also identify people as well as activities that you’ll try to avoid.
Avoiding people is easier than you think whether that’s in person or through things like social media, email or even on the phone when you’ve pre-warned yourself.
The reality is some people will drain your energy levels, some boost your energy – you want to spend time with those who boost it and make you a better, happier person.
We all know people who are negative, always want something and are not adding to your day. Make yourself aware of these people at the start so you can plan things better and if you do have to engage with them, you’ll be better equipped to deal with them and minimize their impact on your day.
The key is preparing your mind in the morning so you manage how you perceive and react to things.
You’re now ready for the day ahead, not matter what
There are many things you can control, so take control of them.
The rest you must be ready for. They’re outside of your control, so the best you can do is interpret and react to them in the best way possible, whether they’re related to the body, mind, lifestyle, work, relationships or even opportunities – that’s the reason you need a morning routine.
When you know what you’ve set out to achieve during a single day, based on a vision you have for yourself in the medium to long-term, you can biohack your way to a better day.