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Morning Exercise?

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For the past 3 years I’ve been working out first thing in the morning.  Now, when I say the first thing . . . I mean first thing, 4:30 A.M. to be exact.  If you’re like me, the first time you heard someone mention working out that early in the morning your probably thought they were CRAZY!  Working out that early in the morning my not be for everyone but it definitely has its merits.  With the hustle and bustle of kids, job and daily responsibilities, finding time to workout can be tough.  What I’ve discovered is that working out in the morning has become a great routine and has benefits far beyond just keeping you healthy.

1.) Better Long Term Results

The latest research indicates that a person who workouts out first thing in the morning is more likely to stick with that routine than someone who workouts later in the day.  Since we are creatures of habit, getting into a routine of working out right after you get out of bed will help you feel energized and refreshed throughout the day.  I was amazed after I started working out before work how much better I felt and how quickly my body recovered.  Plus, an added benefit of working out in the morning is that you are fuel your body and helping it recovery by eating 5 to 6 healthy meals throughout the day, as opposed to working out in the evening and only eating supper afterwards.

2.) No scheduling conflict

Trust me, no one will bother you or hassle you for your attention at 4:30 A.M.  Working out frees you up throughout the day and you don’t have to worry about rescheduling a workout around an unexpected activity.  By finishing your workout in the morning you want have to scramble to “fit it in” later or be tempted to skip it all together.

3.) Get More Done!!

Exercising in the morning increases your energy level, pumps up your endorphins and improve your cognitive thinking for hours after your workout.  You will be more awake and more able to tackle your daily “to do” list.

4.) Increase Your Metabolism

When you workout in the morning your body keeps burning extra calories throughout the day.  This is called the “afterburn effect”.  When you exercise later in the day you tend to sit around more and relax, thus cause your calorie burn level to decrease.  By revving up your body in the morning, it will keep burning more and more calories throughout the day.

5.) Better Sleep

Another great benefit to working out in the morning is that you can experience better sleep at night.  In the past I usually started my workout around 8:30 P.M. and by the time I finished around 9:30 or 10:00 it would take me hours to unwind and cool off.  This is not a problem working out in the morning and there are plenty of studies to back it up.

6.) Better Diet

If you workout in the morning you are more likely to have a different approach to your eating habits, then if you waited until the end of the day.  Why?  After a tough workout, one in which you burned a tremendous about of calories, you will be less willing to sabotage that by eating an unhealthy diet.  Instead you will continue to make healthy food choices to help you stay energized. 

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