The Many Benefits Of Morning Exercise
If you ever needed some incentives to get out the door to exercise early in the morning, here they are. Morning exercise tends to be more habit-forming, so it's easier to get in the groove of moving early. Also, morning exercise is mood-boosting all day long, and it can even boost your career.
From Active.com contributor John Bobalik,
" 'Early morning workouts rev up your metabolism, jump start your energy level and accelerate your ability to burn up calories,' said Tina Schmidt-McNulty, exercise physiologist and clinical exercise specialist on staff at Purdue University Calumet's Fitness Center."
Morning exercise can help you fight weight gain, and it can also help you fight the effects of the economic recession. According to Liz Wolgemuth, writing for US News & World Report's money.usnews.com,
"In the recently published book, Wellbeing: The Five Essential Elements, co-authors Tom Rath and Jim Harter examined the qualities and habits that contribute to high levels of wellbeing in the social, career, financial, physical, and community elements of life. ... Studies show that a 20 minute workout can boost your mood for hours after [exercise]. 'It is so easy to put things off, but when people exercise in the morning, in many cases they did so because over time they realized that working out in the morning puts you in a better mood and you're more productive and you have more energy throughout the workday,' Rath says."
What's a (relatively) painless way to jump-start a morning exercise habit? You may not be a morning person, but if you're motivated (and not too hard on yourself), morning exercise will yield more than just physical results.
Start the night before. Prep your workout clothes, a gym bag full of work clothes (if you need them), and leave your workout shoes where you can see them when you wake up. If you must set your clock radio to an upbeat rock station (or talk radio, whatever gets you out of bed the fastest), do it.
Form the habit
Many psychology studies say that it takes an average of two months to form a habit, so plan ahead for your natural desire to slack off a bit. Forgive yourself for missing one workout here or there.
Give yourself some short-term incentives to get out of bed and to the gym — a new gym book, a cute new workout outfit, a new MP3 player, or a new Blu-ray for a solid week of hitting your get-up-and-go goals. Whatever works, use it!