Once you decide you want to start exercising for better health or to lose weight, the biggest obstacle you come across is the timing of exercise. It can be quite difficult to make a daily schedule that includes all your commitments and training as well. That’s why working out in the morning is quite useful, and most people prefer early workouts. You get your daily dose of physical activity that also makes you more productive and energetic. The chances are high you’ve already thought about morning workouts, but you can’t make yourself get up and move. The primary goal of this article is to provide useful tips to motivate you for early morning workouts. It’s easy; you’ll see!
1. Have a cup of coffee immediately after waking up
Okay, you probably do this every day anyway. To most people, the standard morning ritual includes making a cup of coffee before moving on to other things. Contrary to the popular belief that coffee has some adverse effects on exercise, the study published in the journal Sports Medicine revealed there is no evidence that coffee intake leads to dehydration, ion imbalance, or other side effects.
In fact, a cup of coffee poses as the most powerful tool that can improve both physical and mental performance. For example, the Aviation, Space, and Environmental Medicine featured a research which showed that caffeine maintained vigilance and improved running performance in participants who were Special Forces personnel.
Therefore, a single cup of coffee will make you more willing to be active, and it will improve your performance in the gym.
2. Move the alarm clock
How many times have you pressed the snooze button as soon as the alarm went off? Every time you decide to stay in bed for another five minutes, you lose willpower to go to the gym and exercise. Moving the alarm clock is one of the most practical tips to retain early morning workout motivation. Why? It’s because you won’t be able to press snooze and you’ll get out of the bed. That way, you won’t feel like going back to bed, and you’ll find it easier to go to the gym. Your alarm clock and/or phone shouldn’t be near you, but in the corner, you can’t reach.
3. Exercise with a friend
Having a morning workout with a friend is a great motivator. Why? It’s because when you arrange to pick up your friend or meet him/her at the gym or at a particular spot to go for a run, you won’t decide to stay in bed and leave your friend alone there. You’re less likely to pull out when you know someone’s waiting for you.
It’s not a coincidence that most workout tips mention you should exercise with a friend. In fact, the benefits of a “buddy system” are well-documented. The Psychology of Sport and Exercise published results of the study which showed that habits of people you know have a positive impact on your exercise habits. Training partners provide a powerful combination of healthy competition, accountability, motivation, and support. If your friends or family members don’t want to exercise early, don’t let that stop you. You can buddy up with a co-worker, someone from your gym, and so on.
4. Make sure there are mints on your nightstand
Grabbing a mint the second your alarm goes off can prevent you from going back to bed. First of all, mint is refreshing, and it can tackle bad breath in the morning. Also, mint stimulates your brain and makes you alert. Since the greatest obstacle that most people meet in the morning is a desire to go back to sleep, mints can help you avoid it. Once you’re not sleepy anymore, you are more likely to get ready and exercise.
5. Pack your gear before bedtime
Another common problem that puts people off when it comes to morning exercise is preparing all the gear the first thing in the morning. You don’t feel like finding your sneakers, water bottle, clothes, and you just give up. There’s an easy way to prevent this unwanted scenario – pack all your gear the night before and keep it near the bed, i.e. on the chair. When your gym stuff is the first thing you see when you wake up, you’ll find it easier to get up and go.
6. Have a set goal
People are more likely to stick to their exercise routines when they write them down and create a schedule. Every Sunday night, create the workout schedule for the upcoming week. Write down the timing of your workouts into the planner and treat them like any other appointment. If you can’t exercise that particular morning, write down the reason why you couldn’t. At the end of the week, analyze the excuse(s) and look for different ways to overcome them.
7. Get enough sleep
If you go to bed at 2 am it will be harder for you to get up at 6 am and exercise. Lack of sleep poses as one of the most dangerous threats to morning workouts and the reason is simple – your body is still tired, you don’t wake up refreshed or energized, and your productivity suffers. Sometimes, you don’t even feel ready to endure a short, 20-minute workout. Since sleep is necessary for overall health and wellbeing, as well as your morning workout motivation, going to bed early and getting enough sleep is a must.
Other things to do
Write down your progress
Create a blog and write about your workouts
Avoid negative thinking
Have a good playlist
Plan a well-balanced and delicious post-workout breakfast
Although most people would like to exercise in the morning, they find it difficult to stay motivated because they don’t get enough sleep or organize things thoroughly. This article showed some easy and practical tips you can use to ensure that once the alarm goes off, you don’t think about sleeping anymore.
David Gomes completed his M.S Professional degree in California Institute of Technology. He lives in Oakland, California, USA. He loves to write on a variety of topics such as joint health, weight loss, beauty and skin care for blogs and on-line publication sites. He also loves the latest technology, gadgets. You can connect with him on Google+ and Twitter.