While the thought of an early morning workout may send chills down your spine, for many, it’s the only time possible. If you’ve tried to make it work at every other time with little success then maybe the morning is for you too. Here are 9 tips to get you up and running first thing.
1. Get a clock with a pleasing sounding alarm. I’ve recently discovered the difference this makes. If it’s nasty, chances are you might get up grouchy and uninspired.
2. Layout all your clothes and gym bag the night before. In the morning fog, it’ll be so much easier if everything is ready and waiting for you.
3. Get up the same time every day. This way you’ll teach your body to rise and at least be semi-conscious at this hour.
4. Keep moving. The more time you are standing around in your warm cosy bedroom, the less likely you’ll be to leave it. Wake up, get dressed and head out the door or to where it is you’ll be exercising in your home.
5. Figure out your morning food. Experiment with how little you can eat prior and still get in a good workout. Can you run on an empty stomach or do you need a little something beforehand? If you have a strenuous workout, such as weight training, perhaps a fruit and protein smoothie is what’ll be needed to fuel you through it.
6. Stay motivated by finding a workout partner or group. If you exercise outside, establish weather related guidelines. For example, if it’s below X degrees or raining heavily, hit the gym or workout at home.
7. Pick out some fitness goals, particularly if you’ll be exercising alone, so that you’ll have something to work towards. Whether they be measured in time spent, miles ran or weight lifted, targets like these will help to keep you on track and stay driven.
8. Avoid boredom and alternate your workouts between a variety of activities to keep things fresh. This could be running different routes or changing it up with cycling or swimming.
9. Reward yourself, a lot at the beginning, for staying the course. This could be buying some new sports gear or workout tunes…whatever works to keep you feeling pumped about your accomplishments.
Depending on how big a change this is for you and your sleep routine, it can take at least 2-3 weeks for this to start feeling comfortable. Hang in there though, the increased energy and focus you’ll soon have during your day will keep you motivated to keep your alarm set for EARLY.