Morning workouts are not just for morning people.
When I rise from my comfortable covers in the morning, there is nothing about the birds chirping or the sun shining that gives me a boost to start my day. If anything, they are only constant reminders of interrupted sleep. My grumpy temperament is so bad that I define morning space as an invisible 12-inch shield that my husband and kids can not penetrate until I drink coffee.
In spite of my scrooge-like demeanor, morning workouts have helped me to be a little happier about the chirping birds and sunshine. Don’t fret!!! I know firsthand about the challenges of fitting in another activity to go along with the demands of the morning routine. Waking, feeding and seeing the kids off to school while trying to take the dog out and prepare for work or other morning activities can preempt any and all attempts at a morning workout.
When I first started working out in the morning many years ago, I adjusted my wake up time an hour earlier to 5:45 in order to recondition my mind. It was grueling. Some days I was sleep walking through walk outs. But I discovered that any amount of morning exertion kept me lucid and energized throughout the day. I highly recommend the morning workout routine.
If you are so inclined to try something new this summer, incorporate these tips from Womens Health to help you along the way.
Brew some Joe.
You know that drinking coffee stimulates your brain, but one animal study found that just the scent of java can ease stress caused by sleep deprivation, potentially coaxing you into workout mode.
Pack your gear in advance.
Before bed, set out your clothes, charge your iPod, and leave your kicks by the door.
Have breakfast waiting.
A meal you can digest quickly that contains protein and complex carbs will fire up your brain and give you the energy you need to break a sweat.
Score enough sleep the night before.
Shoot for 7-8 hours. Smooth the way to dreamland by shutting off all your devices (backlit screens keep you from falling asleep) and lowering the room temperature about an hour before hitting the sheets.
Schedule sessions with a friend.
You wouldn’t blow off a 7 a.m. trail run if you knew your BFF was waiting for you shivering in the cold, right? Having a fitness buddy makes you obligated to show up, so make weekly dates with a friend—or friends!