Your alarm rings and you open your eyes, feeling groggy and disorientated. You sit up, half awake. Your bed feels so comfy and cozy. You just want to go back to sleep and not get out of bed and face reality.
Then you think about how some of your friends manage to get out of bed at 6:00am in the morning to work out. It feels unreal and impossible to you – who would want to get out of bed just to make yourself more tired? You would rather get that extra hour of sleep.
Getting up early in the morning to exercise is probably one of the hardest things to do, especially when you have a load of work waiting in the office. So why do people do it? Well, here are some of the reasons to work out in the morning.
1. Increases metabolism
Working out early in the morning has many benefits, and increasing your metabolism is one of them. The term Excess Post-Exercise Oxygen Consumption (EPOC), also known as the “afterburn” effect, means that you burn more calories as your body consumes more oxygen after working out.
The more intense the workout, the more oxygen your body takes in. The more you work out, the more you burn, and the more you burn, the higher your metabolism.
2. Higher energy levels
“Working out in the morning gives you higher energy levels? What a lie!”
Truth be told, exercising creates energy in your body. It pumps more blood and oxygen to your body which gives us more energy. Working out in the morning can also be another better alternative for taking caffeine in the morning as it is proven to be better.
Research shows that doing high-intensity workout gives double the energy boost than drinking caffeine. Your cognitive performance increases by 6% after coffee but by 12% after exercise.
3. Develops discipline
The title says it all. Waking up early to exercise is super hard and requires a lot of determination and discipline for it to be done. Who would want to get their ass off their comfortable and warm bed just to sweat it out before work? You probably have a lot going on at work, emails to reply, customers to serve, calls to do, why would you still want to do that to yourself?
Waking up early just to exercise trains your discipline in life. You are not giving in to your temptations, but you are disciplined enough to wake up and train your body. Doing this will give you the discipline to take control of your life.
If you are looking to enhance your discipline, try getting up and working out in the morning. It is going to be hard, but it only gets easier with time.
4. Better sleep
Having trouble falling asleep at night? Working out in the morning might just help in your ability to fall asleep quicker.
In a research done by Appalachian State University, people fell asleep faster than those who did not work out at all or those who work out in the afternoon or evenings. If you exercise in the mornings, you are likely changing your sleep cycle a bit to get up earlier to accommodate the workout. That, along with the added calorie burn early in the day, can help you fall asleep quicker at night, says lead study author Scott R. Collier, Ph.D., F.A.C.S.M.
5. Better mood
“Why would I be in a better mood when I have to drag my ass out of my comfortable bed in the morning?”
Well, working out helps to boost your endorphins level. Endorphin is a type of hormone that makes you feel good as it triggers a positive feeling in the body. It consists of chemical that crosses the gaps between neurones to pass along a message from one to the next. Endorphins also block the transmission of pain.
Therefore, this increase in endorphins can theoretically make you feel better. That is if you are not the kind of person that is eternally grumpy.
6. Better skin
Waking up early to exercise can help you to improve your skin. As exercise pumps blood and oxygen into your body, it gives your skin more oxygen, and that will make your skin glow after working out.
For those that is often plagued with acne, this sole reason might just get you to quit that snoozing habit: exercising in the morning helps to fight against those pesky acne.
Vitamin D is produced in your skin in response to sunlight, and it is said that Vitamin D reduces the growth of the cells that produce sebum (sebocytes), which would reduce the amount of oil the skin produces. Vitamin D also helps to cool inflammation, thereby reducing the redness and swelling of acne. Of course, like all things, moderation is key, as too much sun can accelerate skin ageing instead.
Thus, even though waking up early to exercise requires intense determination and discipline, the results will be worth it.
So, what time are you setting your alarm to tonight?
Cover photo: Worthlifetalks