Throw Open the Shades (7:00 a.m.) Seeing natural light will help you rise and shine, especially if you're like the 24% of Family Circle readers who say they're most tired when first waking up, according to a recent poll. "Environmental cues play a huge role in our circadian cycles—the internal clock that tells us when to get up or go to sleep," says Holly Phillips, MD, author of The Exhaustion Breakthrough.
Start Moving (7:30 a.m.) Do 10 squats, lunges, push-ups or jumping jacks as part of your get-ready routine, suggests Pedram Shojai, OMD, author of The Urban Monk and Rise and Shine. Exercise enhances blood flow, pushes oxygen throughout the body and sends nutrients to muscle tissue, leading to wakefulness that lasts all morning.
Savor an Aroma (8:00 a.m.) Rev yourself up with scents like peppermint (flavored toothpaste will do) or jasmine (look for it in body wash), which increase alertness.
Improve Your Breakfast (8:30 a.m.) The ideal morning meal mixes protein, carbs and healthy fats to keep you satisfied and stabilize blood sugar levels, explains Bonnie Taub-Dix, RDN, founder of BetterThanDieting.com and author of Read It Before You Eat It. Instead of a bagel, have a smoothie: Blend 1 cup Greek yogurt, 1 tbsp almond butter, 1 cup berries and a handful of ice. (Click here for more breakfast ideas.)
Be Postitive (9:00 a.m.) Call your funniest friend, chat with an upbeat coworker or jot down three things you're thankful for. People who experience more happy events in their day tend to feel less drained, says Phillips.
Drink Coffee (9:30 a.m.) In addition to caffeine, coffee provides health-boosting antioxidants. Experts say sipping a cup of joe a few hours after waking up makes it more effective, because it won't interfere with the body's natural stimulant, cortisol, which tends to peak between 8 and 9 a.m.
Chew Gum (10:30 a.m.) When you're losing power, pop a piece of gum. Several studies show that it increases attentiveness and improves work performance.
Do a Tension Inspection (11:00 a.m.) Is your jaw clenched? Are your shoulders hunched? Uncomfortable posture sucks up extra energy, Phillips explains. Fix it by rolling your shoulders down away from your ears with your chest up, back straight and feet flat on the floor. Now take 10 deep breaths, imagining you're sending oxygen to the spots that feel tight.
Eat a Hearty Lunch (1:00 p.m.) "Energy and satiety are BFFs," says Taub-Dix. Eat enough fiber and protein to feel satisfied, not stuffed, which will make you lethargic later. Your best bet: whole grains (they have invigorating B vitamins) and 2 ounces of meat or fish. Toss items like beans, quinoa, nuts and salmon into your salad. Or choose a turkey sandwich on 100% whole-grain bread.