10 Reasons Not to Avoid the Morning Workout

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Beep, beep, beep… blam! Beep, beep, beep… blam!

Are you a person who hears your alarm clock go off only to quickly slam your hand on “Snooze?” Do you then continually hit that button until the very last minute – nay, second before you have to wake up for work?

Are you also a person with an extra-pounds problem that only the gym can cure? Do you wish you could head to the gym first thing in the morning? Or do you say “I’ll exercise after work” only to be “too tired” when quitting time comes around?

Here are 10 reasons why exercising in the morning is better than exercising later:  

1. Constancy

Does a co-worker have a “Let’s do Happy Hour” invitation and you have to turn it down because you have to hit the gym? Or, worse, you blow off said gym to go to said Happy Hour?

It’s better to get the gym out of the way early before family, evening plans, late nights in the office, or any other myriad distractions get in the way later.

2. Crowd Avoidance

Many gyms crowd up around 4:30pm and make it difficult to get to your favorite treadmill, weight machine or class. Mornings may see a crowd itself, but usually it’s not as large. And people tend to be on a limited time frame, having to get in and out and off to work themselves. 

3. Convenience Factor

Go to sleep in your workout clothes or set them out the night before. When you wake up, put on your iPhone headset, listen to “Eye of the Tiger” or your favorite fitness kick-ass music, drink your coffee or protein shake, and head out the door before you even think about slinking back under the sheets.

4. Stress Relief

Get the endorphins firing before work to lessen your stress and improve your mood. Have a stack of reports to get done before you leave? The burden will feel lighter with a morning workout. And tou might not want to kill Pete from Sales who always wants to give you spoilers for your favorite show before you’ve had a chance to watch it.

5. Burn More Fat

A study by Northumbria University shows that people can burn “up to 20% more fat” before they eat anything. And researchers in Japan have found that fat oxidation occurs if exercisers work out before breakfast. Fat oxidation is the process by which large lipid (fat) molecules break down, which is the kind of weight loss most people want.

Your metabolism will also be fired up for the rest of the day. You’ll burn more calories of Janet’s birthday red velvet cake than you would had you not worked out.   

6. Increased Mental Clarity & Rejuvenation

Pre-work exercising can only help with work performance.

Jasmin Theard, an exercise physiologist at Piedmont Atlanta Fitness Center says that “Exercise leads to the secretion of neurotransmitters that promote mental clarity and an improved attention span. You’ll feel a sense of accomplishment, as well as rejuvenated and recharged.”

7. Lower blood pressure

In an Appalachian State University study, researchers asked participants to exercise for 30 minutes at three different times of day: 7 a.m., 1 p.m., and 7 p.m. Those who did the earliest work out reduced their blood pressure by 10 percent. It lowered even more (to 25 percent) by night time.

8. Sleep Better at Night

Ever have a night time work out, only to find out you’re too hyped up to sleep at bed time? You’re not imagining this.

The National Sleep Foundation says evening workouts can boost body temperature and stimulate the body, which can make falling asleep more difficult. But working out in the morning leads to deeper, longer, and higher-quality sleep when you slide into bed 15 or so hours later.

9. Protect Yourself from Diabetes

According to a study from the Journal of Physiology, hitting the gym in the morning on an empty stomach has also been shown to protect against glucose intolerance and insulin resistance, trademarks of type 2 diabetes. In the six-week study, participants who exercised without eating first, compared to those who ate carbohydrates before and during the workout, showed improved glucose tolerance and insulin sensitivity, on top of not gaining any weight.

10. Build Muscle Efficiently

When you wake up in the morning, your testosterone levels are at their peak, according to the National Institue for Fitness and Sport. This puts your body into prime muscle-building mode and makes morning the ideal time to hit the weights and knock out your strength-training workouts.

No longer dread that early morning work out. Get it done and out of the way first thing in the morning, it’s healthier for you, and allows you to Carpe Diem every day.