Friday, December 10, 2010

Exercising in the A.M.


Exercising in the A.M.
How getting up early gives you the advantage.

When the sun begins peaking over the horizon, you shouldn't be burying your head underneath a pillow, praying it will get dark and turn into night again. Instead, you should take advantage of the early hours to get in an hour of exercise. Why? Because the benefits far outweigh your desire to sleep in a bit.

Benefit #1: You'll Lose Weight
Exercising during any time of the day is proven to help you obtain and maintain a healthy weight. However, recent research hints that exercising in the morning gives your weight-loss goal an extra push. How's it do this? By improving your life a few ways all at once.

The first change is that working out during the first few hours of the day helps you sleep better, whereas working out in the evening can actually make it more difficult to sleep at night. Since healthy sleep habits assist your weight-loss goals, it only makes sense to want better sleep. Working out in the morning also helps your metabolism to get high early on in the day and stay there throughout your day. In addition, exercising early puts you in a healthy mindset from the moment you wake up, helping you make better decisions later in the day.

Benefit #2: You'll Stick with It
Another reason morning workouts benefit you is the ease with which you can stick with them. Whereas it can be difficult to find time during your busy day to squeeze in exercise, making exercise the first thing you do during the day ensures you get in some calorie-burning time no matter what the rest of the day may bring.

Think you may not have the strength to stick with an early morning exercise regimen? Remember that in addition to sleeping better, early exercising gives you increased energy and gets the blood pumping throughout your body. This helps you fire on all cylinders, whether you have a big meeting coming up or have to pull a double shift at the warehouse.

Benefit #3: You'll Get a Raise
As if an energy boost in the morning and increased metabolism weren't reason enough for working out in the morning, this early-morning fix-all may be just what your career needs. If you're skeptical, think about your attitude at work. Have you been down in the dumps? Too tired to go the extra mile?

Working out first thing in the morning may give you the boost you need to get past these issues. Once your boss recognizes your improved can-do attitude, your sudden willingness to go above and beyond the call of duty, and the infectious smile you carry everywhere you go, you may find yourself on the fast track to promotion. And to think-all of this just because you woke up a few minutes early for some running, weight lifting, bike riding, swimming, or calisthenics!

Creative Morning Routines
Getting your exercise every day is no easy task. Getting it in before the rest of your family is awake can be even more difficult-especially if you've not a morning person.

To make sure you get your fill of morning exercises, keep these tips in mind.

•Leave the car at home. Once you've eaten a healthy breakfast, hop on your bicycle or grab your running shoes and get to work the old-fashioned way by your own power. Just be sure to keep an extra change of clothes on hand so you don't have to wear your sweaty outfit all day.
•Do something fun. Everyone has different interests. To make sure you get up every morning and get in some exercise, make your routine fun. Whether you prefer kayaking, bike riding, or push-ups, implement this into your early morning routine and you'll have fun as you improve your health.
•Come to early morning boot camp. Wish there was a class at 6 a.m. ? We got it! Find some likeminded folks and work to become a teacher of the class. As a teacher, missing class isn't possible, so you'll be sure to get your routine in first thing in the morning, even when you'd rather stay in bed.

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