Wakeful, productive mornings begin the night before.

Recently I talked about the magic of early mornings and how those first moments set the stage for an amazing and productive day. Many clients over the years have asked for my help in developing an effective morning routine. More often than not, that conversation leads us to discussing the night before first. If we’re being real, most of us could use a little or A LOT MORE sleep. While many factors contribute to quality sleep, one of the most important practices is a solid, consistent nighttime routine. Just as I believe in preparing the body first thing for the day ahead, I want you to think about how you can better prepare your body for rest. A wind down routine is a wonderful place to start if you want to not only improve the quality of your sleep, but also elevate your mornings. I’ll share how I wind down, but keep in mind what works for you will be different than me. Use my routine simply as a framework and then customize for you!

7pm Last bite

Ideally this is when I finish my last meal. I don’t always get this perfect, but I aim to give my body 2 hours to digest between my last meal and bedtime, which helps to promote quality sleep.

7-8pm Hydrate + Supplements

While I give the baby her bubble bath and get her ready for bed, I sip on sparkling water mixed with Calm, a powdered magnesium supplement that promotes muscle relaxation and proper digestion. You could use flat water as well, but I love a little effervescence. At this point I also take my probiotics, vitamins and melatonin. I honestly haven't found a melatonin supplement that I'm seriously committed to, so stay tuned for that (or send some my way if you have one that works for you!) My Ritual vitamins on the other hand, I've been taking for 2 months now and I love them! They taste minty and don’t upset my stomach.

8pm Epsom Salt Bath

If you’re someone who works out regularly, this is fabulous for muscle recovery. Even if you're not as active, it will help you make your way to better sleep, I promise. I like my bath hot, but not too hot. If your internal body temperature is too high before bed, it can be disruptive to your sleep. I add a eucalyptus bath gel and soaking salt to the water. The idea is that the magnesium in the salt will absorb through your skin to help relax your muscles. I bathe for 15-20min while I listen to a podcast, music or SILENCE (moms, I know you feel me). I do my skincare routine, which includes this amazing facial oil that I roll on my face with a warm jade roller. Then, I put on some cozy jammies and throw my hair in a braid or top knot.

8:30pm Stretch

While my body is still warm from my bath, I do 10-20 minutes of stretching. I turn all the lights off aside from my salt lamp to create a tranquil environment. I love the Foam Rolling and Full Body stretch routines on the Peloton app. If the baby hasn’t crashed for the night yet, she often joins me, rolling around beside me on the carpet with her "baba." The practice of stretching regularly has been an absolute game changer for me. I have less pain, am more comfortable and calm when I hit the sheets and I feel less tension overall.

8:50pm Meditation

I love the Calm or Peloton guided meditations. I generally choose a 10 minute one specifically designed for sleep if I’m feeling particularly awake by this time. Most often, I choose ones that speak to me in the moment. I love meditations that help me connect to certain emotions like courage, gratitude, patience or acceptance. Often those themes stay with me in my dreams and into the following day.

9pm Lights Out

I spritz my pillow with a lavender and eucalyptus mist, turn my humidifier on and drift off.

I hope you found some helpful takeaways in my wind down routine. I know my night appears loaded with tools and techniques, but it’s truly something I look forward to and it’s what works for me. I hope you’re feeling inspired to elevate your night. Sweet dreams…

Xo, Kristen

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©2017 by Kristen Marias, RDN/LDN