If you’re one of those rare breed of humans, it’s a time when you bounce out of bed prepared for exercise, feeling energetic, mentally sharp, and ready to give the world a good dose of yourself, than you don’t need to read this article – just kidding!
But… If you’re like most people, you get up in the morning with an “oh, no not again!” attitude and hazy vision that only a shower, black coffee, and a few hours of being upright will cure. On top of that, morning is usually a study in hurried chaos. You hit the snooze button one too many times. You try to find clothes that match. You just did a load of whites, but you can’t find a pair of socks. You forgot where you put your checkbook and the keys.
Is this a time to be working out? Are you kidding, you say, absolutely out of the question. You know what? The morning hours may by the best time for a “busy person’s workout.” You just have to learn how to plan a morning exercise routine, and then stick with the plan. Here’s your wake-up call.
Try these techniques to make time for a morning workout. Set your alarm clock to go off 15 minutes earlier. NOTE: give yourself 1-2 weeks to adjust to your new wake-up time, then set it back another 15 minutes. Now you’ve just added a ½ hour to your day that you can completely devote to your A.M. workout. But you must make sure you give your body time to adjust to your new schedule. Setting your alarm back 30 minutes is too much of a shock to your system.
Go to bed earlier once you’re committed to morning workouts, don’t expect to be able to go to bed at midnight like you used to. Put simply, if you’re getting up earlier, go to bed earlier. (Some people have a problem with that.) You’re better off cashing it in earlier than watching your favorite late night comedy show.
Get ready the night before. Normally, you waste a lot of time if you roll out of bed, stumble to the bathroom, take a shower, put your clothes on, then to the kitchen for some coffee and a quick eat-on-the-way-out-the-door breakfast. Once you think about your morning routine, you may find dozens of little things you could do the night before to give yourself some extra time for a morning workout. For example:
A coffee maker with a timer you set before going to bed
Making your lunch
Setting your keys, checkbook, and briefcase by the door so you don’t have to look for them
These will save you minutes in the morning – and it only takes a few minutes to add another set of reps or another mile to your workout.
Consider going to bed in your workout clothes! Go to bed in shorts and a T-shirt (or if it’s cold, sweatpants and a T-shirt). Then, when the alarm goes off, get out of bed, jump into your shoes, and you’re ready to go. While you’re at it, get your work clothes ready, too. If you work out at a gym, pack them in the car so they’re ready to go.
One of the best ways to stick to a morning exercise routine is to go to bed and get up the same time each day, even on weekends. Sleeping in more than an hour will throw you completely out of whack. Once your timing is down, STICK WITH IT. You will be rewarded with a body and mind that functions smoothly – almost like clockwork.