Let’s be honest here: university demands us to excel at time management. We have to balance our social and studious selves on the regular whenever we cram lectures, coffee dates, committee meetings and going out into one day. In order to maximise planning efficiency, should you start working out in the morning?
Hear me out: beyond shorter gym queues, bragging rights, and sense of accomplishment you gain from morning workout sessions, here are some important reasons why you should consider setting your alarm clock early.
1. You burn more calories and fat
If your fitness goal is to lose weight, you are in luck. The effects of hitting the elliptical in the AM last all day thanks to the metabolism boost you receive. This, in turn, will make you burn more calories throughout the day, as you won’t be sleeping the boost off. Your body will not only be energised, but will also burn more fat, as exercising on an empty stomach inspires your body to attack your fat stores rather than carbohydrates.
2. You’re less likely to be tempted by junk food
Science also suggest that exercising in the morning helps instil healthier life choices. A 2012 study from Birmingham Young University found that after a 45-minute morning workout, women were more likely to reduce their portion sizes and make healthier food choices. Excellent news for those of us who indulge in Krispy Kremes from time to time! Are you looking to incorporate some healthy meal choices yourself? Take a look at our favourite post-workout treats.
3. You become more consistent
However, the healthy lifestyle changes don’t stop there. The American Council on Exercise has shown that early birds are among the most consistent exercisers, and even work out more than those who exercise at other times in the day. Since you are waking up with the precise goal of completing that 30 minute jog, it is less likely that any last minute disruptions will cause you to change your plans. If you’ve been struggling with consistency in your exercise regime, it might be worth joining the morning gym-goers!
4. You sleep better and are less stressed
Working out in the morning also has positive effects on your mental well-being. Having an exercise routine especially in the morning hours really helps with falling into a deep slumber later. This is because exposure to daylight early on in the day will remind your body to power down at night. Researchers at Appalachian State University also found that morning exercise reduces blood pressure, which further promotes better sleep.
Plus, remember that metabolism boost we discussed earlier? Exercise is amazing at releasing a kick of endorphins, which will make you more relaxed and prepared to tackle the day’s challenges. Namaste!
5. You have more free time
Morning gym sessions will never interrupt your social calendar. No one has ever hosted a 7 am birthday party, and, by rising early, you won’t have to duck out of dinner reservations because of your spinning class. Yet, you’ll still get your sweat on, and you’ll have the rest of the day to look forward to other challenges. Win-win!
Does this mean that it is better to work out in the morning? It certainly has its benefits, but keep in mind that performing exercise at any point in the day will be beneficial to your lifestyle. If any of these reasons align with the goals you are trying to achieve, then definitely look towards setting that alarm early. However, if you love that Zumba instructor who teaches at 6 pm on Wednesdays, don’t let us stop you from getting your sweat on after lunchtime.