So as most of you know already, I am on a quest to make 28 my healthiest year so far! I am off to a great start and feeling amazing. I can FEEL my body changing (this may not be true, I don't think you can feel changes in 4 days, but humor me). One of the things that I wanted to accomplish was to start to be one of those people who works out before work. I have ALWAYS wanted to be that person. I always think about being able to go home immediately after work. I was doing that some times when I wasn't working out in the morning, but I would struggle with it and feel so guilty. I would always have making sure to get a workout in on my mind. When you work out before work, you can go home!! At 5pm!!!! And do whatever you freakin want!!! Ok, I lied about that part. You know you have to do laundry and shit. Oddly enough, after being a night owl for years and years, I have started to become more of an early bird. But to me early bird means 7ish. The gym offers classes at 5:15am. I have to wake up at 4:45am to make it there. 4:45am is not an early bird time. That is a night owl time. Like, I used to stay out until that time, but waking up at that time kind of seems ridiculous. That being said, this is how my week has look:
Monday: 5:15am spin class
Tuesday: 5:15am zumba toning class...oh wait they no longer offer that class at the gym, so 2 mile run it is
Wednesday: 6:00pm-8:00pm tennis practice
Thursday: I am planning for 3 miles after work
Friday: 5:15am spin class
Saturday: 1pm-3pm tennis practice
Sunday: Day of rest
I thought I was going to want to start out slow, but it seems that all this activitiy becomes addictive REALLY fast! I actually almost attempted a 5:15am spin class Wednesday morning as well, but I figured I would give it a break since I had tennis that night. I thought after AM classes I would be a zombie all day, but I have felt amazing. It wasn't too tough to get up, although I think tomorrow may be different when it feels like it is -38 degrees outside, but I think I have it in me.
I read this article Sunday night before I went to sleep, knowing that I wanted to get up early for class. It was motivating and really helpful. Some things that were helpful for me:
-Lay everything out the night before. Clothes, iPod, shoes, whatever you need. If you make it too difficult, you won't do it. I literally lay my clothes in a stack in the order I need to put them on. My brain is barely functioning at 4:45 so I have to make sure it's as simple as possible.
-Eat a little something before you go. This one is tough for me, but I will feel sick if I work out on an empty stomach. What has been working for me is half a banana on the way to the gym and the other half on the way home.
-I don't have to do this one, but some people say if you put your alarm clock on the other side of the room that is helpful.
-On Sunday make a workout schedule for the week. When you schedule gym time, don't cancel it for other things.
-Use social media. I know it may sound dumb, but it works. Trust me, I am as tired of reading about the personal details of everyone's life as much as the next person, but hey everyone is doing it anyway, so you may as well use it to benefit you. It never fails...when I post on facebook that I am going to a spin class at 5:15am, I will almost always have 1-3 friends text me and ask me if I made it. I don't want to have to embarrass myself and say no. That is good motivation for me!
So on to a few benefits of working out in the AM:
-You boost your metabolism! You get your body started right when you get a workout in first thing.
-You will sleep better at night. Exercise stimulates your body, so when you do it later in your day, it is tougher for your body to get in sleep mode. You need that time in the afternoons for your body to start relaxing.
-It is really hard for me to get motivated to go to the gym after work. I am ready to relax. If you make yourself get up, you will be less likely to skip a morning workout than you would be to skip one right after work.
-I will put you in a good mood!! Like all day long people! “Exercise gives you endorphins. Endorphins make you happy." Remember that one?
Let's face it; our lives get busy. There is laundry to do, dishes piling up, dinner needs cooking, all after being at work for nine hours. But you know when you probably don't have anything on the schedule...5:15am. Just try it for ONE week. I bet you will get hooked!