Anyone else been setting their alarm for early morning gym workouts, and just immediately switching it off and going back to sleep? Like, has it almost become a routine thing to just never follow through with getting out of bed? Because we FEEL you.
Dark, cold winter mornings are the absolute pits, and it’s so easy to tell your cosy, dreary little self that you’ll just workout in the evening. But you’re tired as hell at the end of a long day, and it’s so much easier to curl up in front of Netflix or a good TV show than to tell yourself it's gym time.
Plus, research has shown that people who workout in the morning are more likely to make exercise a habit. “Our bodies love routine. Additionally, there is less chance scheduling conflicts,” says Director of Flow Athletic, Ben Lucas.
Getting out of bed to hit the gym is also a solid way to start the day, because: endorphins. “Exercise releases endorphins which may increase your productivity, so it makes sense to do this before you start the day as it is a great way of setting your day up right,” says Lucas. “Depending on the type of exercise that you do, your body can burn calories for hours after your workout, so it is a good way to keep your metabolism elevated, too.”
There are undoubtedly some real benefits to getting that sweat session in before work - you just have to bite the bullet and get started. And once you’re moving, you’ll barely miss your bed – we promise! Not sure how to make morning workouts a part of your regular routine? Check out seven ways you can make it easier for yourself to wake up in the morning so you’re less likely to bail on exercise.
Lay out your gym clothes the night before
“Set up your gear next to your bed the night before,” says Lucas. “Have your tights and top out and your bag packed.” This way you don’t have to waste a single second thinking about what you’re going to wear – and remember, the more you like your outfit, the more excited you will be to put it on. If this isn’t cutting it, sleep in them!
Hit the sack early
It may sound obvious, but going to bed at a reasonable time will make getting out of bed that little bit easier. Make it your mission to get as many hours (and minutes!) into your snooze sesh as possible. If you don’t, you may be able to get out of bed, but you’ll find yourself crashing by lunch time. Going to bed at the same time every night helps you set up a habit that makes you feel more rested in the morning.
Set multiple alarms if you need to
Sometimes reading those #fitspo motivational quotes on social media just won't cut it, friends. If you know you’re going to snooze that alarm no matter what you do, it may be time for some tough love. Set two obnoxious tunes for your alarms and move your alarm clock (i.e. your phone) away from your bed – that way you have to get up to turn it off. Bittersweet.
Find a workout routine that makes you *want* to get up
“Are you scheduled in to do a workout that you enjoy? Is the studio you are training at convenient to get to? Do you like the community?” says Lucas. If your morning workout isn’t fun, you’re more likely to brush it off and hit snooze. “Get excited about the workout you are about to do; this is another reason to choose something you enjoy,” says Lucas. Find a personal trainer you look forward to seeing, or sign up for a fitness class with amazing energy, an awesome workout playlist, or a great coach.
“So many of our clients love coming to us because they like feeling as though they have seen familiar faces in the morning, or that they have hung out with people outside of work so make sure the vibe of the place is a good one,” says Lucas.
Set fitness goals
Do you have a friend’s wedding coming up? Or maybe you've booked into a half-marathon in a couple of months? Use this as your workout motivation. Having something to work towards will make it more likely that you’ll actually force yourself out of bed to reach those fitness goals - whether it's to lose weight, tone up, or just stay healthy. “Sign up to a fun run, or a challenge that has a date attached to it so that you have to be prepared by that time and therefore have to show up to training,” suggests Lucas.
Workout with a friend you can’t let down
The best type of gym motivation? Your bestie. “Get a friend involved as you won’t want to let them down,” says Lucas. To increase your chances of success even more, make your workout plans with a friend who will be super pissed if you leave them hanging in a 5:30am HIIT class.
Remind yourself how good you’ll feel afterwards
Knowing how great you’ll feel once you finish your workout, and knowing you now have an entire day (kind of, because gal’s gotta work) and night to do what you want, is a great motivator. “Realise that it will set up your day nicely and you will feel better for it,” says Lucas.
Erin Docherty is a Beauty Writer for BEAUTYcrew, Beauty Editor for Women's Health magazine and a Grooming Writer for Men's Health magazine. She has a keen interest in cosmeceutical skin care and is currently working on minimising her 9-step skin care routine – because ain’t nobody got time for that. When she’s not writing about the latest beauty news, or applying copious amounts of serum, you can find her spending all her money in Sephora.