I’ve talked ad nauseam about the fact that the best/hardest habit I’ve ever established was my morning core and yoga routine. (I’ve tried other morning routines like running right away, but this is the one that makes the most sense for wherever you are in the world, regardless of what your life looks like—no bad weather or no place to run excuses!) Four years ago, I started with a 10-minute yoga video every morning, and now I have a 15-minute super basic routine that I do as soon as I roll out of bed every morning. It’s not sexy or funky and I don’t switch it up often—I only add or subtract if it’s a) getting too easy, b) I’m injured and need to modify something or c) I’m injured and I need to add something as a rehab exercise (which is why clamshells are now part of it). I don’t listen to ocean sounds or meditate during it, to be honest. I have Netflix going on my iPad and I’m watching something super cheesy like Riverdale because TBH, that’s what’s going to get me out of bed and onto my mat. It works for me.
ANYWAY, the morning core and yoga routine is great because it ensures that you’ve done some strength + mobility every day. It also adds up: 15 minutes every day = almost 2 hrs per week = 100 hrs per year of mobility and strength. Holy $hit.
My best advice? If you’re new to it, start small. Like, 30 seconds of planks and 2 minutes of super basic sun salutations. Gradually work your way up. But once you work up to around 15 minutes, I would stop there. Don’t make it so long that the second life gets in the way, it becomes unmanageable. Sure, some days you can go long and call it your full on strength workout for the day, and on days I’m doing a 6AM yoga class, I skip the routine in favor of that. But the core, basic routine that you do EVERY DAMN DAY should be short enough that it’s do-able even on a hectic workday. I think a lot of people make the mistake of going long thinking that’s going to be better, but creating something totally unmanageable. If you find yourself a) bailing on it because you’re busy or b) tired/skipping your regular workout because this kicks your ass, it’s time to dial back. This isn’t your main workout for the day, it’s just a wakeup.
OK, here are all the links and videos you could possibly need to get your own routine started:
My actual morning core and yoga routine:
- 5 min of plank variations
- A quick yoga flow with pigeon, pushups and lunges. It’s simple, efficient and hits all the spots I need to focus on mobility-wise!
A short AM Yoga Flow:
Another short AM yoga flow:
Anywhere Strength + Core:
(doing 6-10 reps of each exercise 3-4 times through)
I hope that helps! I can’t say enough about what doing this every day has done for my core in general, my abs in particular, and my mobility overall. It’s the healthiest habit that I have, and hopefully you found something in here to try out!