As someone who has always preferred working out in the evening, getting myself to the gym in the early am is no easy feat. It's much more preferable to hit snooze or spend my first waking hours drinking coffee and easing into the workday.
But many benefits come with exercising first thing in the day, and they are enough reason to make me reconsider my post-work gym visit.
For starters, working out in the morning is a great way to jumpstart my metabolism and get my body moving after being static all night. It also gives me a reason to hydrate and fuel up before 9 am—whereas I generally am still drinking coffee and just remembering to drink water and eat something around then.
Another incentive that's making me reconsider? Getting it done. Does anything feel better than rolling up to the office knowing you've already exercised, hydrated, and fueled up for the day ahead?
Even still, working out in the morning can be difficult, especially when first starting out. So I've compiled a few tips (ones I'm practicing myself) for getting your booty out of bed and at the squat rack, all as the sun is coming up.
Go To Bed Early
Seriously. Don't stay up late watching Netflix and eating candy. This will make the task of getting out of bed that much more difficult. Aim to be in bed at least 8 hours before you want to be up—and give yourself an hour cushion to ease into your morning, have some water, and a small snack before hitting it in the gym. Ideally, be asleep by 10 pm.
Set Your Clothes Out For The Morning
This tip is overdone, but that's because it works. Set your gym clothes out the night before, along with your water bottle. That way, when you wake up, you can move towards exercise clothes and hydration, rather than having to think too hard about where your shorts are and if they are clean.
When changing up your schedule, start out small. Tell yourself you're going to work out in the morning on Monday and Tuesday, then stick to your normal routine for the rest of the week. Ease into it.
Take A Friend
Need accountability? It definitely makes it easier. Enlist a workout friend who also works out early to hold you accountable. Whether or not you go to the same gym, you can text each other in the morning to gently remind the other person to get up and out the door.
Be Kind To Yourself
Lastly, don't beat yourself up if it's hard, or even if you decide you prefer to work out at lunch or after work. To each their own! Remember: You're caring for your body whenever you exercise—it doesn't matter what time the clock says!