Whether happily employed or actively looking, the toughest part of the day can be getting out of bed. If your morning routine is anything like mine it consists of meandering around in a sleepy fog that hopefully results in the kids getting on the bus and a pot of coffee being poured before starting work. That is if I remembered to set the alarm the night before.
Instead of doing the slacker shuffle when I wake I really should be working out. Scheduling 10-30 minutes of exercise in the morning has more benefits than you would expect. It makes a difference on your whole day not to mention the impact it has on your overall health, happiness and well being.
It may seem like the morning is an extra torturous time to ask you to spring out of bed and start doing step aerobics but more often than not if you don’t work out first thing you don’t work out that day. It’s easy for surprises to hijack your schedule and exercise is usually the first thing to skip on the to-do list. 90% of people who stick to their work out routine consistently complete it in the morning.
Another reason morning work outs are better is because they increase the quality of sleep at night. Anyone who’s struggled with the insomnia that comes with unemployment knows the value of a good night’s sleep. Working out in the morning gets your metabolism going early and allows for down time before sleep. Evening workouts wind you up and make it harder to decompress and get the rest you need.
One of the best things about exercising in the morning is that it’s better for your body than caffeine and keeps you on your toes without a crash later. You yawn when you’re tired because your body craves oxygen. When you work out you intake oxygen and pump it throughout your body. This increases mental clarity and sharpness for up to 10 hours post work out.
Sounds good right but it’s so hard to get started on a new routine. Try these tips to get yourself going when you want to begin a morning workout routine:
Early to bed -The old saying is no joke. Getting to be earlier makes it easier to get up in the morning and getting up earlier in the morning makes it easier to go to bed at night. It’s all a cycle, you just have to start it.
Tell your body you’re the boss - Set your alarm and stick to it without hitting the snooze button. After a week or so your internal clock will trump your alarm clock and you won’t be startled awake any longer.
Stand and stretch - When you lay down to sleep at night, your spine is decompressed creating tension and stiffening the back. Who wants to work out when they feel like they can barely move? Make sure a warm up is incorporated into your routine so you don’t hurt yourself.
Take a hot shower – A steamy shower can be an integral part of the warm up process. It decreases body temperature transition time when it’s cold outside and your bed is still warm. The heat on stiff joints is also beneficial when the lack of flexibility threatens fulfilling your exercise expectations for the day.
Stop making excuses and start the day off right. Stick to it and you’ll see a difference in your energy and productivity level, you might even lose some weight.