The application of heat and ice to muscle injuries has long been used by athletes to aid recovery. In many Nordic cultures, a sauna session is followed by a dip in ice-cold water, a cold shower or even the sea.
After a warm shower, I have an icy cold rinse every morning because the rush of the cold jets on the body increases the heart rate, adrenaline and endorphins helping to relieve stress. It certainly wakes me up and is totally invigorating.
Make the time today to take this further and indulge in some morning worship...
For a great morning pick-me-up
01 To start your personal wellbeing routine, try dry skin brushing, followed by alternate warm and cold showers, then 5 minutes mindful massage. Use natural brush or bamboo gloves.
02 Start from your feet and with a circular motion of rhythmic, invigorating movements, brush your legs moving up to your abdomen, around your breast, chest, arms and the back of your neck.
03 Jump into the shower. Start with warm water, gradually lowering the temperature to cold, followed by warm again. Repeat, finishing with a cold shower.
04 Apply a body lotion upwards from your feet. In a standing position, lift your leg and support it on the edge of the bath or a chair.
05 Apply lotion to your palms and, with long invigorating strokes, massage your lower leg from ankle to knee.
06 Massage the back of your calves in a circular motion, thumbs at the front. Finish with long strokes. From the knees to the groin use alternate long strokes with your palms, increasing circulation.
07 Use your palms to make long strokes across your chest, alternating big stimulating circles with long strokes along your arms.
08 Place your index, middle and ring fingers of each hand on the back of your neck. Make slow, deep circles to relieve any stiffness.
09 Finish by cupping your palms rhythmically along each shoulder as far back as you can. Make sure the your wrist stays loose and that you are cupping only fleshy areas.
10 Continue cupping along each arm, either side of your waist, then down along the hips, each leg and finishing on your bottom.