Humans don’t agree on many things. Be it political matters, academic theories, or even debates in the realm of sports, mankind can rarely find common ground. But after thousands of years of experimentation and appraisal, it seems we’ve reached a general consensus on one thing: when the sun rises, so do we. The day starts with the morning, and like all the adages attached to the period proclaim, it’s the most important time of the day, so it’s important to get it right.
The importance of starting the day the right way is not a new concept, but it can be difficult to understand exactly how you can get it right. For support, we’ve turned to some of planet earth’s most successful men who prove that going all guns blazing from the crack of dawn can be the ideal addition to any routine.
Don’t hit the snooze button tomorrow morning. From Mark Wahlberg’s intensely early start to Jim Carrey’s unorthodox creativity rituals, these habits can be picked up right away and could help you unlock the secrets to a morning that both prepares and revitalises you for the day ahead.
If you were feeling good about your daily routine, a quick scan of Mark Wahlberg’s intense schedule is sure to bring you crashing back down to earth. The actor shared his now infamous daily schedule on Instagram a few years back, and it’s as gruelling as it is specific. Wahlberg’s day begins at what is essentially still the middle of the night for most people, 2:30am. Then, he’s straight into 30 minutes of “prayer time”, followed by a quick breakfast, a 1.5-hour workout, and a second meal, all before 6am.
Overall, we’re not sure if Wahlberg’s most mystifying use of time is his hour and a half-long showers, or that he can get through a solid golfing session in just 30 minutes. But with a morning routine like that, it’s no surprise that Wahlberg’s “bedtime” is only 7:30pm.
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At 76 years of age, Arnold Schwarzenegger still maintains a rigorous morning routine to ensure he’s starting his day right. Although, it’s not all about muscle-building for Arnie nowadays. Schwarzenegger’s day begins with a pig. Yes, you read that correctly. The bodybuilding icon is the proud owner of a pig, donkey, pony, and three dogs, and he starts his day by feeding his many pets.
Rest assured, immediately after feeding time, Schwarzenegger hits the gym with the same intensity he’s always used. First, he gets there via a bike ride, a process he describes as miserable. “When I ride down to the gym, it is almost kind of like black and white, what I see. Because I’m not yet really happy,” he said. A 45-minute sweat session and a bike ride home later, Arnold has a different perspective. “After you work out, and after the bike ride back, all of a sudden, everything turns to colour. It’s like we’re going from a black and white movie to a colour movie.”
You don’t become the owner of one of the most recognisable faces in Hollywood without a killer morning routine, and Chris Hemsworth is living proof. Waking up at the not particularly unreasonable hour of 8am, Hemsworth starts his morning with a light breakfast and some quality time with his family, which, if nothing else, is almost a guaranteed serotonin booster.
Following a breezy start to the day, Hemsworth hits the gym, which he says is an important part of his routine, even when he’s not training to attain the almighty physique of a buffed-up Norse god. Precisely how Hemsworth works out depends on largely on his mood. When you train almost every day, the biggest obstacle to revelling in the grind isn’t just the bodily toll of repeatedly gruelling workouts, but boredom. As such, Hemsworth rotates between weightlifting, bodyweight circuits and cardio.
Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson
Earlier we discussed how humans rarely agree on anything, but another place we typically find consensus is The Rock’s hulking rig—the consensus being that it’s undeniably admirable. That physique didn’t just spawn out of thin air. The Rock has always utilised a jam-packed schedule, beginning with an early start to his day.
Rising at 4am, The Rock gets activated with 30 minutes to an hour of cardio—usually spent on a treadmill or elliptical machine. After that, it’s time for carbo-loading with a hearty breakfast consisting of steak and eggs with fruits and toast. That provides the necessary fuel for a monster workout that ranges anywhere from one to three hours. By the time that’s done, it’s only 9am, and The Rock is ready for the cameras.
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Orlando Bloom’s morning routine went viral a few years ago for its various obscurities. Immediately after waking up, Bloom tracks his sleep quality. No problem there. Mastering sleep is an essential facet of any successful routine. From there, Bloom likes to “earn” his breakfast. Translation: ingesting a bunch of gross tasting yet surprisingly healthy ingredients that can excuse the caloric intake of breakfast. Bloom’s pre-breakfast dish consists of unspecified “green powders”, brain octane oil, and collagen powder. Not the most delectable treat, but a nutritious one.
Bloom says he regularly starts his day with either a hike spent listening to Nirvana, or a brief session of reading—and presumably internalising—ancient Buddhist texts. To each their own.
Hollywood funnyman Jim Carrey has always kept his morning routine mostly under wraps, except for one hilarious detail. The actor calls himself on the phone every day at 11am, pretending it’s someone else. In his head, the person on the other end of the call is not some mysterious stranger, but someone he knows well calling with news. Carrey says the process is essential for getting creative ideas flowing and gaining new perspectives. Who are we to judge?
In a move we’re sure many can relate to, rather than enduring a daily battle with the harsh, cacophonous sound of an alarm clock, Jeff Bezos favours waking up naturally. The world’s second richest man—currently outranked by only Elon Musk—spends the rest of his morning tottering about with a coffee and a newspaper—no strict and arduous regimen here.
We suppose that once you’ve attained such immeasurable wealth as Bezos, you can afford to make a leisurely start to the day, but the billionaire is all business when it comes to, for lack of a better word, business. Bezos makes it a point to have all important meetings before lunch to allow for a more flexible schedule later in the day.
A former SAS operative, adventurer and survivalist, Bear Grylls has always pushed himself to the limit. He told Men’s Health that his regular Tuesday morning starts with walking his dogs for 20 minutes. For an unspecified reason, he does this barefoot. Following his walk is a 30-minute home workout, before trying to “get cold”. That means submerging himself in a nearby body of water, or in his homemade freezing room, which he says can get down to just two degrees.
Sounds like a lot to get through before work, right? Well, time management has always been on of Grylls’ strong suits. “If I’ve got a busy day ahead of me, I can get this done in 45 minutes,” he said. You’ll notice that breakfast wasn’t part of that routine, that’s because Grylls regularly endures a 14 hour fast to begin the day. Tough going for a non-superhuman.