Ever consider a run on the treadmill to go with your morning coffee? Studies show that hitting the gym early in the morning hosts a multitude of benefits, such as an improved mood and a better night’s sleep.
The best part of a morning workout is that you reap the benefits almost immediately and feel the effects throughout the rest of the day. Getting in those morning reps helps with staying focused and feeling positive, due to the release of endorphins during exercise. These “happy hormones” reduce the level of cortisol in your system and leave you feeling less stressed and more confident in your skin all day long.
This decrease in stress and increase in confidence can do wonders for your work-life balance. According to Science Daily, exercise contributes to keeping you calm during life’s most demanding moments and equips you with confidence to handle daily interactions with ease. Plus, getting that workout out of the way early in the day will leave you with more time to tackle other important to-do’s.
Improving your daily time management helps increase your mental bandwidth. When you have all of your other tasks taken care of, it becomes much easier to focus on your fitness-related goals, like building muscle, for example. The early bird truly does get the worm (or, muscle, in this case) because in the early morning hours is when your your body secretes peak amounts of the crucial hormones that are responsible for building muscle mass. By taking advantage of these naturally circulating hormones, you will leave the gym with a bigger pump than you might have after a late night workout.
Studies also show that working out in the morning leads to a better night’s sleep and lower blood pressure. In an experiment with subjects working out at 7am, 1pm, and 7pm, the subjects who exercised early in the morning showed a drop in blood pressure that remained with them throughout the day and a deeper sleep at night. Those who worked out at 1 pm and 7pm showed little to no improvements in blood pressure.
If you’re not convinced yet, working out in the mornings is also the perfect preventative measure for skipping the gym. By waking up specifically for the gym in the mornings, it leaves you little room to conjure up the excuse that you were too busy or something came up. Waking up in the mornings to workout is certainly the perfect no-nonsense approach to reaching your fitness goals.
While the benefits that come with working out in the morning are enough to jump out of bed at the first sound of your alarm, it’s important to remember that you will be unable to reach your full potential if you are not fueling your body correctly. Before a workout, it is recommended that you eat a combination of complex carbohydrates and proteins so your body will be able to perform optimally during exercise.