Correct us if we’re wrong, but this a pretty universal description of mornings—especially when the weather starts to shift. You manage to wrangle your feet out from under the covers, force them onto the floor, and then immediately want to take it all back and crawl under the duvet for another hour (or two or three). Those first few moments after the final alarm goes off are always the toughest, which is why we’ve decided to prolong the inevitable get-up-and-go, not out of laziness, but for a good cause—a two-minute trick that A) lets us stay in bed for two more minutes and B) makes getting out of bed worlds easier.
What’s the trick? It’s a total-body stretch that gets your blood flowing and gently wakes up your muscles so it will be less shocking when your feet first hit the floor. Did we mention you don’t even have to get out of bed to do it?
Here’s how it’s done:
10 seconds: First, sit up straight and interlace your fingers in front of you. Round out your back as push your palms forward. Hold that position for 10 seconds while you gently shake your head from left to right.
10 seconds: Then, reach your arms up above your head, stretching your upper body tall. Hold for 10 seconds while you nod your head up and down.
10 seconds: Next, release your hands, drop your arms, and interlace your fingers again—this time behind your back. Squeeze your shoulder blades together as you open your chest. Let your hands fall behind your seat, and lean back, transferring your body weight into your wrists. This wrist inversion should feel great if you type away at a desk all day. Hold for 10 seconds.
20 seconds: Come back up to sit tall. This time, position your legs so one is out in front of you and one is behind, both bent at 90-degree angles, which opens up tight hip flexors. Fold forward and hold for 20 seconds.
20 seconds: Roll your body over, away from your front leg, and bring that arm (the same one as your front leg) up over your head. Reach out for the wall and hold that position for 20 seconds to feel a deep stretch along your side.
40 seconds: Sit up, switch legs, and repeat the last 40 seconds on the other side.
10 seconds: Swing both legs out in front of you, flex your feet, and fold forward. Try to hold onto the bottoms on your feet and stay there for the final 10 seconds to release your hamstrings. Now you’re ready to get out of bed. We also like to keep Avène's Thermal Spring Water ($19) on our bedside table, just in case we need a little extra push to wake up in the mornings.
This post was originally published at an earlier date and has since been updated.