3 Reasons You Feel Terrible When You Wake Up In the Morning

I’m not a morning person. I hate mornings. No matter what I try or how long I try it, nothing makes waking up any easier.

When I had my choice of work schedule at Walmart I preferred to work 1pm-10pm or 2-11pm shifts. Now I work in the Accounting office which means I have to be at work at 6am on Saturdays and Sundays. (It used to be 5am but we got a new machine that does half of the work for me.) So I usually start work at 7-8am during the week. 

I spent this morning thinking about the main reasons I feel terrible in the morning and what I can do to feel less terrible.

3 reasons why you feel terrible when you wake up in the morning and what you can do about it

I’m not a doctor/nutritionist/dietician. These opinions are my own. This post contains affiliate links. That means if you click a link and then make a purchase I’ll make a small commission at no cost to you. I use this money to pay back my mountain of student loan debt. For my full disclaimer, click here.

You Feel Terrible in the Morning Because You Are Hungry

You feel terrible in the morning because you are hungry. Make sure you eat something with starch, such as cereal, to kickstart your brain.

It’s important to eat in the morning because by then your body is basically starving. If you eat dinner at 6-7pm and then you don’t eat breakfast until 6-7am. That 11-12 hours without food. Yikes. That’s a big reason you probably feel terrible in the morning. In fact, this is probably the main reason I feel terrible in the morning. 

I hate eating breakfast. I would rather sleep than make time to cook. Eating breakfast makes my stomach hurt and foods like cereal and toast just feel really sharp on my mouth. I know, excuses. But I still hate eating when I wake up. 

Eating a starchy snack right before bed can help with this morning time hunger. So bread, popcorn, cereal, crackers.

I read somewhere that your brain needs these starches and carbs to stay functioning which is also why you’re supposed to eat starches for breakfast like toast, cereal, muffins. It gets read of that morning brain fog. 

Note: Coffee is not breakfast. It has no nutritional value and if you add sugar and cream it’s even worse. Sure it tastes delicious and can be a wonderful calming part of a morning routine but you need to pair it with some real food. Most fruits can give you the same boost as caffeine without the crash later on. 

You Feel Terrible in the Morning Because You Are Dehydrated

You feel terrible in the morning because you are dehydrated. Make an effort to drink at least 8 ounces of water first thing in the morning.

You need to drink water right away in the morning. You just spent 6+ hours sweating, breathing, and maybe drooling. You need to replenish your system. Most people don’t drink nearly enough water throughout the day. This makes you even more likely to be dehydrated when you wake up. 

I recently did a 5 day hydration challenge and started paying much more attention to the amount of water I drink in a day. I’m getting a pretty good feel for when I’m feeling dehydrated. I realized I am definitely feeling dehydrated in the morning. I have this giant 32 oz glass that I use and that gives me a really good start on my water consumption for the day. I use the app Plant Nanny App to track the amount of water I drink and it gives me reminders throughout the day.

It’s important to stay hydrated throughout the day so you don’t end up drinking a bunch of water before bed, because we all know what that leads to. 

You Feel Terrible in the Morning Because You Are Not Getting Enough Sleep

You feel terrible in the morning because you aren't getting enough sleep. Try to set a consistent bedtime and wake up time.Setting a consistent bedtime and wake up time is very important. It’s easy to tell yourself “one more episode” (which is the new version of “one more chapter” for nerds like me). But if you find yourself struggling to stay awake do yourself a favor and go to bed. Just because you are an adult and can stay up all night on the internet doesn’t mean you should. 

I wound up with a consistent bedtime schedule because my husband works at 5am five days out of the week. He needs his sleep or he gets grumpy and can’t deal with his coworkers. So he has a time he shuts his computer down and does his basic evening routine and then we lay in bed and read the internet on our phones for about half an hour before actually going to sleep. I know I function best when I have at least 8 hours of sleep (if not more, I love sleep). So this system works out great for me. 

I use my Fitbit Alta HR to track my sleep and see the quality of my sleep. Sometimes I have trouble getting to sleep and so it gives me a more accurate estimate of how much sleep I am getting at night. It turns out that even when I feel like I’m awake all night I’m still getting a fair amount of actual sleep. It also has a vibration alarm that will wake me up silently. Also it won’t let you turn the alarm off until you wake up a bit.

I really want a sunrise alarm clock but that’s probably going to have to wait until after we move. Then Josh can have his blackout curtains and I can still wake up in the morning.

3 reasons you feel terrible in the morning and what you can do to wake up easier and sleep better

What Makes You Feel Terrible in the Morning

Let me know in the comments. 

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