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.
Photo:Courtsey of Aditi Shah
Confession: I'm equally jealous of and impressed by fitness instructors. Besides the fact that they get to wear leggings and sneakers to work each day (goals), the amount of strength and stamina they maintain for their jobs is admirable. Most commendable of all? Their entire career is built on a passion for helping others live healthier, happier lives. Those endorphins don't release themselves!
On the flip side, however, the job is not for the faint of heart. Take Aditi Shah, for example, a yoga instructor who teaches at the cult-favorite Peloton studio in New York City. She teaches flows and inversions, yes, but she also leads live-stream classes that have the potential to reach over 500,000 subscribers. No pressure. On camera and off, it's literally her job to live a healthy, fit lifestyle so she can continue to inspire her fellow yogis to do the same.
Want a dose of that inspiration? Keep scrolling for her complete morning routine, from what she drinks instead of coffee to her camera-ready skincare rituals.
Wake up! Honestly, I’ve always been the kind of person who naturally, and happily, wakes up early. None of my partners have quite understood my perky early wake-ups, but I bounce out of bed with a smile on my face around the time that sunlight starts to fill the room. There are two things I do before getting out of bed. The first is to tune into gratitude for a new day, and the second is to be mindful of how I feel placing my feet on the ground.
Like most people, the first thing I do is brush my teeth. Then I take a super-quick shower. I follow this with Drunk Elephant B-Hydra serum and then the Lala Retro Whipped Cream on my face. For my body, I like Taza Ayurveda Eladi Oil.
I’m a Peloton instructor and spend a lot of time being active on camera, which means that prioritizing my health is nonnegotiable. I start my day with a huge Mason jar full of water. I add trace minerals and unsweetened, unflavored electrolytes into my water to nourish and to preemptively hydrate myself for the day. Drinking water is literally the easiest self-care hack in the world.
I also take a sublingual NMN (nicotinamide mononucleotide) tablet. The body of research on this substance is small but promising with respect to aging. I love to read, listen, and learn as much as I can about functional health, and I use PubMed to help educate myself about current research. I wouldn’t call myself a biohacker, but I’m open to the idea of using science to help me be the best version of me.
While I enjoy coffee, I’ve noticed that regularly consuming it affects my energy and my anxiety levels. So I’ve replaced my coffee with Rasa, an herbal alternative that is full of adaptogens and makes me feel like I’m nurturing my body.
When the weather in NYC is warm enough, I’ll take it outside onto my balcony and soak up some sunshine while I sip my drink. As it gets colder, I find a sunny spot indoors. No phone. If any creative thoughts pop into my head, I jot them down. This time is not a meditation practice, but it is a purposeful presence and mindfulness. My days are full of live classes on camera, conversations with members on social media, photo shoots, meetings with my team, and, of course, email for work and my personal brand. Quiet alone time in the morning is precious to me.
After my Rasa, I take a moment to check in with myself, set intentions and priorities for the day. At this point, I will allow myself to look at my phone to check my calendar for the day. It’s amazing how a little planning and focus can make a hectic schedule feel manageable.
My day highly depends on my teaching schedule. If I have work, I’ll have to get myself ready and out the door in about 15 minutes. I usually scrape back my hair into a high ponytail and apply makeup. I try to choose organic, natural products: super-light foundation or tinted moisturizer with SPF for my face, concealer for under my eyes, blush, and my favorite makeup item of all time, eyeliner. That’s it! I’ll change into the clothes I laid out the night before, grab my bag that I already packed, and head to work. If I’m teaching at 8 a.m., I’m in an Uber by 7 a.m.
If I’m not teaching, I will skip makeup and get ready for my own yoga practice. I’ll change into yoga clothes, grab a tote with a yoga towel, AirPods, sunnies, and keys and head out the door.
I practice Mysore-style yoga with Lindsay Hilscher. I typically don’t listen to anything on the way and instead try to pay attention to my neighborhood waking up: the sleepy dog walkers and cute young families heading to school.
I usually eat breakfast after practicing yoga. (If you’ve ever practiced yoga with food in your stomach, you know why.) I’m a big smoothie person because it’s a great way to get a lot of nutrients into one meal. I’ll fill my blender with greens, fruit, protein, and non-dairy milk.