Here's How to Stay Energized in the A.M. Without Drinking a Single Cup of Coffee

What’s the first thing you do when you get out of bed in the morning? A well-rounded morning routine sets the tone for the day and gets you prepped—both mentally and physically—before diving into a packed schedule filled with emails, chores, happy hours, workouts, and more. Our series Morning Person profiles those who have mastered the art of the morning routine. Tune in every Monday morning here and on our Instagram to learn exactly how the pros get it all done before the sun comes up, from their go-to breakfasts to their a.m. workouts.

How to Have a Morning Routine Without Coffee



I'm sure I'm not alone in saying that one of the reasons I'm even able to get out of bed in the morning is knowing a piping-hot cup of creamy, comforting coffee is waiting to fuel my caffeine addiction. Okay, maybe I'm slightly more dramatic about my love for coffee than most, but still. The idea of managing without a daily dose of brew is enough for me to give up on a morning routine entirely.

But for Molly Hayward, that's the norm. Despite her love for the stuff, she's challenged herself to reduce her coffee intake and rely on more natural ways to energize herself. (If you're asking if that even exists, read on.) She's the founder of Cora, an organic tampon line, so it makes sense that she's trying to be as au naturel as possible. We commend her for her efforts and take note of all the ways she does stay energized sans several cups of coffee. Keep scrolling for some of her favorite morning rituals that help sustain her energy levels until bedtime. 

6:30 a.m.

I love waking up slowly, riding that blurred line that separates daytime from dream time. So when my alarm goes at 6:15, I snooze for 10 more minutes, basking in the deliciousness of my ultra-soft sheets and heavy comforter. I put my arm around my warm bedmate and smile, thanking the universe for the good fortune of waking up next to him once again.

How to Have a Morning Routine Without Coffee



6:40 a.m.

When it rings for the second time, I know I have to cross that line and start the day. I sit up in bed and do 15 minutes of breathwork to energize and ground myself before the pressures of meetings and an endless list of tasks takes over. Now that I’ve started facilitating breathwork, it’s more important than ever to have a regular daily practice. I mix it up sometimes, but typically I do a box breath: five-second inhale, five-second hold with lungs filled, five-second exhale, five-second hold with lungs empty. Because it slows the number of breaths to about three per minute, it’s immensely relaxing and helps to quiet my monkey mind. I think of this time as sacred—a brief moment in the day that is just for me to be and connect with myself.

7 a.m.

I walk to the kitchen to get the kettle going. I love coffee but have been trying to reduce the amount I drink in order to get more consistent and balanced energy throughout the day. I’ve shared with my community on Instagram my obsession with Chinese herbs and mushrooms sparked by a chance meeting with a master herbalist in Ojai, but I’ve also fallen in love with Yin Powder by Sun Potion and Mud (a masala chai–based powder that includes cacao, reishi, lion’s mane, and chaga). The black tea in the chai satisfies my caffeine addiction, while the remaining herbs and mushrooms nourish and gently energize me.

7:15 a.m.

After a few sips of my morning brew, I head back to my bathroom and run a dry brush over my entire body in long strokes and circles towards my heart, which is crazy-energizing. 

Then, I brush my teeth with all-natural tooth powder (try it—you won’t ever go back to conventional sugary sweet toothpaste) and jump into a quick shower.

I've been trying to rebalance the natural oils in my hair and scalp so I don't have to shampoo as often and have been liking Humankind's Shampoo Bar. As I mentioned in my Target run, my shower always includes my all-time favorite soap, Dr. Bronners Liquid Castile Soap in Lavender. Pure castile soap is made from simple plant oils like coconut and olive, making it safe and gentle for even the most sensitive skin, and it contains no synthetic ingredients or fragrances. For the last few seconds of my shower, I love to just stand and enjoy the feeling of the hot water before turning the knob for a quick cold-plunge rinse to really get my heart pumping.

7:20 a.m.

I throw my hair up in a towel turban to start the natural drying process. (I'm an au naturel wash-and-wear girl thanks to the genius women at Edo Salon in SF who cut my hair.) As for my skin, I'm obsessed with the cream by S.W. Basics. It's my all-purpose daily base moisturizer. Why? Because it has just three (yes, three!) yummy ingredients: shea butter, coconut oil, and olive oil. That’s it. Totally natural, peace-of-mind minimalist moisture. 

I do a light coating of Philosophy Tinted Moisturizer to even my skin tone and add some SPF, then brush a bit of color onto my cheeks, and swipe on some mascara—easy.

I finish up with a few drops of essential oils from Vitruvi on my pulse points. I love the way the smell of bergamot, juniper, and citrus instantly perks me up.

7:45 a.m.

My typical wardrobe is something easy and relaxed, like a basic linen jumpsuit and a denim jacket with a scarf or bandana. I throw on a favorite hat and a few simple pieces of jewelry (and if I’m on my period, my Fearless Necklace).

8 a.m.

I’ve never been a breakfast person, and I find that fasting until midday suits my energy needs and constitution, so I mix up a second batch of Mud, throw it in a travel mug, grab my pup, Stella (who comes to the office with me every day), and hit the road.