One or two bad habits won’t ruin your health and fitness progress – we’re only human after all. But if you consistently practice unhealthy habits, they can quickly add up and sabotage your weight loss journey.
Starting your day off on the wrong foot can set the tone for the rest of the day and make it difficult to stick to a healthy routine. Let’s take a closer look at some common morning habits that could be hindering your weight loss goals.
1- Unhealthy breakfast
First, if you’re intermittent fasting to shed extra pounds, you probably don’t have to worry about this as much (though you still want your first meal of the day to be something nutritious no matter what time you take it.)
But if you do eat breakfast shortly after waking, you want to make sure you choose something that is both satisfying and nutritious. Loading up on sugary cereals, pastries, or fast food breakfast sandwiches may give you a temporary energy boost, but they’ll likely leave you feeling hungry and sluggish shortly after.
Instead, opt for a balanced meal that is plant-focused, light, and satisfying.
You could go for something simple like a breakfast smoothie and a slice of avocado toast, or you could make overnight oats the night before – so all you have to do in the morning is grab and go!
Either way, try to avoid high-fat and high-sugar breakfast options if you’re serious about losing weight.
Next, consider if you’d go a whole eight hours during the day without a single sip of water or at least a liquid with some water concentration.
Likely not, right?
Well, when you sleep, by default your body is without water for eight hours or so.
That means when you wake up in the morning you need water – even if you don’t feel like it!
Grabbing coffee first thing in the morning may seem appealing to wake you up. And this is a good option, of course.
But start your day with one or two cups of water first and you’ll be doing your body so much better!
Next, hitting the snooze button to sleep for an extra 10 or 15 minutes may seem like a good idea at the time, but it can have negative effects on your energy levels throughout the day.
The extra ten or fifteen minutes likely won’t make a strong impact on how you feel, and what’s worse – it can throw off the remainder of your morning plans.
You’ll either skip out on something you wanted to do that morning and wind up rushing out the door feeling frazzled and stressed.
You might forget something you need to bring with you for the day, making you feel unprepared and adding unnecessary stress to your day.
Instead, aim to get up with your first alarm and use that extra time in the morning for something productive or relaxing, like stretching or meditation.
This will set a positive tone for your day and help you avoid the negative side effects of rushing through your morning routine.
If you’re used to snoozing and find it challenging to hop right out of bed, this could be a sign that you’re genuinely not getting enough rest.
In this case, you likely need to work from the opposite end – go to bed earlier so you can wake up earlier.
You’ll get better results!
4- Social media or phone usage
Many of us are guilty of scrolling through our phones first thing in the morning, checking emails or social media.
But this habit can lead to feeling overwhelmed and anxious right away, as you’re bombarded with information and messages before your feet even hit the floor.
Instead, try to avoid using your phone for at least 30 minutes after waking up.
Use that time to focus on yourself and your morning routine, or simply enjoy a few minutes of peace and quiet before starting your day.
This can help you start your day with a clear mind and avoid the negative effects of social media addiction.
Another bad thing about social media first thing in the morning especially when it comes to losing weight and your health is that not only can it make you feel negative due to the comparison trap, but there is evidence to show that social media can make you hungry!
Feeding your mind things that have the opposite effect from what you want straight when you wake up is a horrible way to move in the right direction.
You’re much better off spending your mornings on yourself, setting yourself up for a successful and productive day, and then checking your phone and social media later on.
5- No intentional morning routine
Do you wake up and immediately rush to get ready for the day, with no real plan in mind?
This can lead to a scattered and unfocused mindset that can negatively impact your entire day.
Having an intentional morning routine can help set the tone for the rest of your day and increase the chances that you’ll do what you set out to do!
There’s a “chain of success” that takes place when you start checking things off of your “to-do list”, even if your to-do list isn’t something set in stone or written down.
Let’s say you set your alarm for 5:40 am and intend to get out of bed, have a simple morning routine of journaling out your day, sipping your coffee and light stretching.
When you actually wake up at 5:40 am and do those things, your mind registers this as “success” – and it’s more likely that you’ll follow through with the other things you’ve planned for your day (like eating clean or working out!)
But if you don’t have a morning routine in mind, or if you turn off your alarm clock and ignore your morning routine, then you don’t get that same boost.
You could actually experience the opposite sensation of failure, which can lead you to throw in the towel before the day even begins!
Do yourself a favor and commit to at least a ten-minute morning routine that you can stick to.
Your body and mind will thank you!
6- Failing to plan your day
Have you ever heard the saying, “If you fail to plan, you’re planning to fail”?
It may sound cliche, but it holds a lot of truth. Failing to plan your day can lead to aimless wandering and unproductive use of time.
Take some time each morning or evening to map out your tasks and goals for the day.
This is SO important with weight loss!
I’ve said before that there is quite a bit to plan and do if you’re serious about achieving your goals.
You’ll likely be grocery shopping, meal planning, making your grocery list, and cooking on four separate days each week.
Failing to plan these tasks is a recipe for disaster.
Then you’ll want to add in a few workouts, acknowledge your social life and work obligations.
You can absolutely fit everything into your life and enjoy your life with a healthier diet and leaner, more fit body.
But it does take daily planning.
You can plan your day the night before, of course. But you’ll still need to review your plan every morning so that you recommit to your cause.
So make sure you set aside time in the morning to at the very least review your day before it begins.
It makes a world of difference!
7- Negative self-talk
Another bad morning habit that can hold you back from reaching your weight loss goals is negative self-talk.
It’s easy to look in the mirror and criticize yourself for not being where you want to be or compare your progress to someone else’s.
But this kind of mindset is damaging and counterproductive. (And it’s why you shouldn’t start your morning with social media – it’s too easy to compare yourself to others and you don’t need that at six in the morning!)
Instead, focus on the progress you’ve made and celebrate small victories along the way.
I recommend reciting or at least reflecting on positive affirmations every morning.
Fill yourself up with love and appreciation for your body because it’s gotten you where you are today!
You are the amazing person you are right now because of who you were yesterday and all the days, weeks, months, and years before.
That person is always worthy of love, respect, and positivity.
Start every day treating yourself well and filling yourself up with this light and you’ll find it so much easier to stick to your goals.
Come from a place of self-love and great things follow.
8- Leaving your space untidy
This may not seem totally related to success with weight loss, but starting your day with a cluttered and messy environment is absolutely one of the bad morning habits that can affect your mindset and motivation.
A disorganized space can lead to increased stress, which can then trigger unhealthy eating habits.
Furthermore, if your clothes and shoes are scattered all over the place, it can make it harder to find and put together an outfit for your workout or daily activities.
Taking a few minutes each morning to tidy up your space can have a positive impact on your overall mood and productivity.
Not only will you feel more motivated to tackle the day ahead, but you’ll also have a clear and organized space to support your healthy habits.
Plus, when you come home from a long day of work or at the gym you’ll love to take a shower and plop down into a ready-made bed!
It just makes sense!
9- Impulsive behavior
Last but not least, impulsive behavior can also be one of the bad morning habits that will hinder your success with weight loss.
This includes making spontaneous and unhealthy food choices, skipping workouts, or giving in to cravings without thinking about the consequences.
To combat this, it’s important to practice mindfulness and self-control.
Take a moment before acting on any impulse and ask yourself if it aligns with your goals and values.
Also, try to plan your meals and workouts so you’re less likely to make impulsive decisions.
An example of this is let’s say you’re on your way to work and the fast food drive-thru is calling your name.
It’s not part of your plan for the day, and sure you can trick yourself into thinking “just this one time won’t hurt.”
But the truth is that an impulsive decision is not just “one time”. It’s a slippery slope, and one unhealthy choice can lead to another.
Instead, have healthy snacks in your bag or plan to make a nutritious meal at home after work.
This way, you’ll be less likely to give in to impulsive cravings.
Being mindful and intentional with your actions can help you stay on track with your weight loss journey and ultimately achieve success!
Just make sure you start your day with intention instead of impulse and you’ll be on your way to achieving the body you crave and deserve.
The bottom line
Remember, consistency is key when it comes to achieving long-term success with weight loss.
And creating healthy morning habits is so critical to your overall success.
You don’t need an elaborate morning routine that has you waking up at 4 am and doing a two-hour prep before your day begins.
But you do need to avoid common pitfalls that can thwart your progress and keep you stuck without you even knowing why!
I hope this article helped you discover even one or two small things that you can change.
Because it truly doesn’t take a lot to go far!
I believe in you and I know that you have what it takes to live the life of your dreams.
You’ve got this!