Does this scenario ring a bell for you? You wake up in the morning and get ready to start your day. You tell yourself you’ll hit the gym after work or dinner. Only for 6 o’clock to roll around and you’re still at work. Or you’re too tired. Or the kids need help with their homework. It seems like it’s always something and you never have the time to exercise as you intended. If you struggle with consistency and keeping the commitment to yourself to exercise, it may be time to consider a morning workout.
Early Risers See Better Consistency
Research suggests that those who wake up just a little bit earlier to work out are better able to make exercise a consistent habit. You may be thinking you don’t get enough sleep as it is, but with these five lifestyle habits, you can train yourself to become a morning exerciser.
- Eat The Right Stuff – it all starts with what you put in your body. Make sure you have a healthy meal the night before your morning exercise complete with lean protein, veggies, and healthy fats.
- Eat At The Right Time – avoid eating heavy meals late at night and make sure you’re completely done with your eating for the day at least 90 minutes before you head to bed. This allows your stomach time to digest your food.
- Make It Fun – find something to look forward to while working out. This can include some new workout clothes or equipment, a routine that gets you excited, or a fun playlist to move to.
- Accountability Buddy – working out is more fun with friends! See if a friend will meet you at the gym or a park so you can exercise together. You’re more likely to stick to your exercise plan if you have plans with someone else. If no one you know wants to exercise in the morning, try finding a MeetUp group that aligns with your goals.
- Be Prepared – get everything ready the night before so all you have to do is get up and go! Set out your clothes, gear, snacks, and water so you don’t have to think too much before heading out the door.
Morning Exercise Tips
- Warm-Up Time – your temperature is lower in the morning, so give yourself extra time to warm up.
- Eat Light – it’s best to eat something small before exercising. But, if you like a large meal in the morning, wait an hour and a half before exercising so you have time to digest.
- Experiment – this is new for you, so be patient with yourself. Try experimenting with different wakeup times and workout lengths to see how you feel before and after exercising.
- Stick With What Works – once you’ve found a time that works for you, stick with it! This way it becomes a habit and you’re more likely to continue.
If you’ve never tried working out first thing in the morning, you might be amazed by how much energy you have throughout the day. There could be other added benefits as well. Studies show those who work out in the morning may be able to improve their sleep. This is great news for anyone looking to curb cravings, as poor sleep can influence hormones that affect appetite. So, find a buddy, make a plan, and get your morning work out on.