On these cold winter mornings, it’s such a temptation to just crawl back into that warm bed for a few minutes more! Especially if you’re feeling some stiffness, lethargy, and fatigue on waking, which just plain makes it hard to get out of bed. You have this thought that you just need a few more hours of sleep! But experience tells you, that just doesn’t work.
So how can you get through those morning moments and make an energized, positive day?
Empatharian Movement Practice is a great way to energize your day, starting with the very beginning: getting up with Empatharian.
What does that look like?
Pain and stiffness on waking are not unusual, especially if you’re a senior like me, and especially if you’ve had some injuries in the past that may have left a bit of arthritis in your joints. Or a lot of arthritis!
Here’s a few ideas for Before you Get Up
If you don’t feel like getting up, spend a little time in bed doing some stretches and contractions-
- Knee Hugs – Lying on your back, hug one leg at a time bending the knee up to the chest, and hold for a count of 5. Then hugging both legs to the chest, hold for the count of 5 and then release.
- Take 4 deep cleansing breaths from the belly, and expell with a noise through pursed lips of the mouth. This will clean out some of the cobwebs in your head, oxygenate the blood, and wake you up gently.
- Spinal twist: Lying on your back with arms stretched out to each side of you, lift one knee towards your chest, stretch out the other leg, and bend that raised knee over towards the opposite side. Feel your spine twist nice and slow and let yourself sink in, keeping the shoulders fairly flat on the bed, which accentuates the twist. If you can touch you knee to the bed, great! Or just reach over towards that direction and hold it. Then I do the other leg/knee going the other side. Repeat twice to each side.
- Lower Back Lift: Lying on you back, with knees bent, feet flat on the bed, use your arms down next to your body to leverage a lift from the hips up into the air. Your shoulders stay on the bed, and you lift the pelvis and hips as far up as you can, holding for the count of 5. Then lower the hips slowly, starting at the neck, vertebrae by vertebrae, stretching the spine as it comes down to the bed. Do this lift 5 times, resting between repetitions for a nice cleansing breath. This is great for neck stiffness, shoulder stiffness, and builds resilience for avoiding lower back pain.
Getting Up Peacefully and Gently
You’ve now warmed up your body a little, ready for rising and shining! So slowly stretch a leg and then an arm out to bring your weight up and just sit with two feet on the ground, on the side of the bed for a minute. Now, let’s do some Empath Stretch:
- Stretch your left arm up slowly, with a soft fist, palm aimed up to the sky. When your arm is fully extended, open the fingers and stretch each one out as you bring you head up to an aligned position straight with the spine, chin slightly tucked under. Now, relax and lower the shoulders.
- Do the same to the right arm, slowly extending with your hand in a soft fist, palm facing up to the sky. As the arm is extended fully, open the fingers widely and hold the position for the count of 3. Making A Stand
Opening To The Day
Oh, that stretch feels good! Now one more stretch and you’ll be up on your feet ready for the rest of the Empath Stretch, which we’ll show you on tomorrow’s blog article.