Night-time Routines for Winners
Prior planning prevents poor performance, or so the saying goes. Another popular expression is fail to plan, plan to fail. There is a reason these sayings are so popular – they’re true!
If you want tomorrow to go as well as possible, you need to start preparing the night before. Get into the habit of following the same routine each night, and you will soon find that good days are not a rarity but become your new norm.
- Make your breakfast
This might seem like an odd way to end your day, but it ensures tomorrow will start off on the right foot. Breakfast is arguably the most important meal of the day, and a good one will set you up well for everything else you need to do tomorrow. Don’t just grab a bowl of frosted flakes or a toaster pastry when you get up. Gather the ingredients you’ll need to make a real breakfast the night before.
While you are at it, set up your coffee machine and program the timer so that you’ve got a pot of liquid motivation waiting for you when you wake up.
- Pack your gym bag
Training tomorrow? Good on you! Provide yourself with one less excuse to skip your workout by packing your gym bag the night before. That way, when you head out the door the following morning, you can just grab it and go. Make sure you include your post-workout snack too.
- Take a ZMA supplement
ZMA stands for zinc and magnesium, and most ZMA products contain vitamin B6 too. Zinc is a highly anabolic mineral that can increase testosterone production. Magnesium is relaxing and can help you sleep. Vitamin B6 plays an essential role in energy production and utilization.
Whether you create your own concoction or buy a ready-made ZMA blend, taking these substances can help you sleep better and recover faster from your workouts. Take your dose about 30 minutes before it’s time to hit the rack.
- Make a list of the things you need to do tomorrow
There is nothing worse than waking up half-way through the night and remembering something you should have done or need to do. Suddenly, that's the only thing on your mind, and you can't get back to sleep.
Avoid this problem by making a list of tomorrow’s tasks before you go to bed. That way, you’ll wake up in the morning with a plan of everything you need to achieve. Put these items in order of importance or in chronological order as preferred. It doesn’t matter so long as you know what the following days will entail.
- Meditate or practice positive visualization
Night time is when your brain reprograms and resets itself. Like any computer, it’s only as good as the software it’s running. Give your internal operating system an update by spending a few minutes meditating or practicing positive visualizations. There is a good chance that these things will imprint on your brain during the night so that you wake up feeling positive and ready to face the day.
- Get to bed early
Most adults need about 7-8 hours of sleep per night to function properly. There might not be much you can do about the time you have to get up, but you should have a lot more control over when you go to bed. Make sure you go to bed early enough to get the recommended amount of sleep per night.
Unwind before going to sleep by reading a book. Don’t watch TV in bed, or fuss with your phone or tablet. The bright light will disrupt your circadian rhythm, signaling your brain to wake up rather than sleep. Read until you feel your eyes beginning to droop, and then roll over and into a good night’s sleep.
If your night-time routine is solid, you may want to place a focus on your morning routine to help prepare yourself for the day ahead.