A couple of Fridays ago I rose to the chipper tweeting of the birds and made my way to Old Street Underground Station at stupid o’clock to take part in my first ever early morning rave. That’s not a typo. My friend Sophie had signed up for the event after spying it in Time Out magazine and I was delighted, if a little bleary eyed, to go along too. The event was hosted by Lipton Ice Tea as part of their Be A Daybreaker campaign to get people to try something a little different to kickstart their days.
We had such good craic listening to tunes from Norman Jay and filling our bellies with the not-so-healthy-but-absolutely-delicious breakfast burgers from Burger Bear and of course drinking plenty of iced tea. Even though my body went into shock at getting up so early it really was a great way to make the most of my morning and by the time I got to work I was raring to go instead of scrambling for my regular caffeine hit. It got me thinking about what else I could do if I just set my alarm that wee bit earlier so I did a little internet search and thought I’d share my findings with you.
In the spirit of shaking a tail feather there’s a monthly worldwide event called Morning Gloryville which looks like the best fun! Brace yourself for a whirlwind of glitter-coated euphoria at this totally sober early morning rave. Get dressed up and leave any self-consciousness at the door as you dance your troubles away with a happy-go-lucky tribe of early risers. From what I’ve read online there are also yoga sessions and massage to ease you into your day if raving’s not quite your thing. I haven’t tried it myself but am itching to do so – let me know if you fancy a dance partner!
If you prefer to ease into your day why not hop on board the wellness bandwagon with an early morning yoga class? For London-based seasoned yogis on a budget Broke in London has a great list of free and almost free early morning sessions. For those of you who might be a little less limber (like me!) Stillpoint Yoga London offer week long courses in Ashtanga for beginners on a monthly basis for those who fancy giving it a go. At £75 (£60 for student and unemployed participants) it’s pricier than the BiL guide but perhaps worth investing in so you can get the basics under supervision. Namaste!
There’s something quite lovely about waking up to birdsong; I find it really relaxing. If you’re lucky enough to have a garden or green space nearby you’re bound to have feathered visitors. If not there are lots of ways you can make your space – urban or otherwise – more wildlife friendly to encourage them to stop by and give you a tune. RSPB have lots of hints and tips on how to welcome wildlife to your patch including a really handy bird identifier that will help you learn the songs of your newfound friends so you’ll know who’s visiting before you’ve even wiped the sleep from your eyes.
If splashing cold water on your face is the only way to get you going in the morning what about taking a dip in one of London’s open-air public swimming pools? Lidos, as they are commonly known, tend to soar in popularity in warmer months but before the sun sits high in the sky there’s every chance you can enjoy an early morning dip in relative peace. With many lidos opening as early as 6am you can take a leisurely splash around first thing and still catch a bus or tube to be in work on time. Prices vary but should you find yourself in the Brockwell area any time soon here’s a form that will get you a free one day pass.
All that exercise is bound to work up an appetite and what better way to fuel your day than with some delicious bircher muesli in pancake form? I saw this recipe in this week’s Emerald Street email and as a devoted disciple of the church of all things Scandi I’m excited to try it out. Unfortunately I can’t seem to link the recipe here as I received it in an email but all you need are your ingredients and a blender / trusty chopper-upper:
Blitz a handful of oats, a handful of pecan or brazil nuts, a couple of dates, one banana and one apple with 250ml of milk (cow’s, soya or almond all work) to create a pancake-mix constituency. Fry in coconut oil. Top pancakes with yoghurt and berries, or a drizzle of honey and tahini.
I’d also add some of the holy trinity (cinammon, cardamom and nutmeg). Yum!
So there you have it: 5 ways to make the most of your mornings in London and beyond. What are your favourite ways to kickstart your day?
See you next time,