FEELING GREAT: Wake up to a more healthy lifestyle

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Let me tell you a story about a patient who called the clinic last week, who really struggles with getting out of bed in the morning.

David gave us a call struggling with severe back pain – back pain so bad that it was stopping him from even walking.

David wanted an emergency physio appointment, but the thing is, when we offered to see him first thing (which meant him waking up an hour earlier than usual), believe it or not, he said no.

Now think about that for a moment – a gentleman suffering with back pain so bad that it’s even stopping him from walking (and probably even affecting his sleep), couldn’t bring himself to wake up an hour earlier than usual to ease his pain.

Seems pretty illogical, but the thing is, most people find getting out of bed in the morning tough, and it doesn’t make it any easier when dark, cold mornings make staying snuggled under a duvet far more inviting than getting up.

Thing is, spending more time in bed will do the opposite to what most people think it will do.

It won’t actually make you feel more awake, it’ll make you feel more tired (especially if you have over eight hours’ sleep).

So with that in mind and for the sake of your health, here are some tips that have worked for my patients to help you get out of bed in the morning feeling fresh and more alert, no matter what time of year it is:

1. Don’t hit snooze – when your alarm clock goes off, you’ve got to get up within minutes. Resist the temptation of hitting the snooze button, or you’ll most likely wake up wanting to hit snooze again. Once you’re up, stay up and jump right in the shower.

2. Set your alarm at the same time every day – and yes, this even means Saturday and Sunday. Even though the time you go to bed has an impact on your energy levels, if you get into a sleep and wake-up routine of the same time every day, you’ll put an end to feeling lethargic for good and waking up will feel lots easier.

3. Set a timer for your bedroom heater – getting up when it’s cold is no fun at all, so to turn this around, set a timer on your heater for it to come on at least 10 minutes before your alarm goes off. This way it won’t be so bad getting out from under the duvet in the morning.

Now’s the perfect time of year to get these daily sleep habits into action to say goodbye to the drudgery of winter mornings.

For more health tips like this to help you live an active, more mobile life visit www.thehealthyhabitbook.com