I recently spent a week getting up at 3:30 a.m. in an attempt to replicate the morning routine of company founder Dan Lee.
You can read about it more here, but I can sum it up in a few words: it was horrible.
I became cranky, irritable, my appetite went to pieces, and I could not wait for it to end.
However there is a reason which would make me consider doing it again — occasionally. I simply cannot ever imagine doing it every day the way Lee and other business leaders do.
Time. Clearly I am stating the obvious but waking up at 3:30 a.m on a daily basis gave me nearly three hours more in my day than usual.
Free time is at a premium for many professionals in modern society. Commuting, especially in London, can be long and stressful, 9-5 shifts are not as common as they used to be, and the ability to work remotely often sees people working longer hours than ever before.
Because I was sticking closely to Lee’s routine I was required to spend my early mornings in a specific way. However in the future if I was to attempt it again I would make some changes to the routine to adapt it more to my needs.
Firstly I would definitely change the water, coffee, and smoothie binge that Lee starts his day with. Well, I say change, I would stagger my drinking as the headaches that come with taking in that much sugar and caffeine first thing were not pleasant. I would also substitute the coffee for green tea and possibly save the smoothie until after my morning exercise.
Having that time in the morning to read and ease myself into the day was far more pleasant than most peoples’ morning routines. There was no rush to shower, shave, and sprint to the bus stop or Tube station.
Admittedly the major downside of the early wake up is that by 5:00 p.m I found myself flagging and my ability to concentrate was basically zero. However once in a while this would be something I could tolerate.