Before starting my summer internship, the thought of a 5:30am wakeup call was a HARD no. Like, not even a considerable option. But after going to my first 6:10am Barry’s class I was hooked, and the extra-early workout session has become a 3x a week occurrence. Let me start off by saying that working out is a really important part of my life; it’s my therapy and the one hour of my day that’s dedicated completely and entirely to myself. Exercise is simply part of my lifestyle and always will be. That being said, I’ve always been a morning workout person since I hate working out after I’ve eaten—the nausea takes away from my workout and the whole experience just isn’t as enjoyable for me. Plus, I think working out is the best way to start your day. A good sweat followed by a good shower, the rush of endorphins, and sense of accomplishment grant me a productive and positive mindset, and all before 10am. Just to be clear, it ain’t always easy. Some days I’m literally excited when my alarm goes off, other days I curse myself out in my head for booking such an early workout class. But, after the workout’s done and my body and mind reap the benefits, you can find me booking my next 6am sweat session.
Since I’m a college student with classes starting no earlier than 11am, figuring out how to fit working out into my 40-hour-a-week internship posed a challenge. For me, working out at 6am sounded better than working out at 6pm when I’m tired and full of food so I booked a class and haven’t looked back since. I know it sounds daunting and quite honestly horrendous, but hear me out and don’t knock it ’til you try it. So, here are 5 reasons to workout at 6am:
1. Once you’re up, you’re up
If you work a 9-5, you have to wakeup early no matter what. So what’s losing 30 minutes or an hour of sleep? Just adjust your schedule and go to sleep a little earlier. As I mentioned before, working out in the morning means getting it out of the way and earning a sense of accomplishment that will float with you throughout the day.
2. Increased focus
Exercise triggers a release of endorphins which, aside from making you feel happy, improve the prioritizing functions of the brain. This means increased concentration and attention spans! You’d think working out in the morning would deplete your energy and focus during the day, but it really does the complete opposite.
3. You can sleep in on the weekends
Getting your workouts in during the week, when you have to wake up early anyway, means you don’t have to spend those precious Saturday and Sunday mornings at an over-booked, cramped workout class. 6am weekday classes tend to be much quieter and allow for more one-on-one time with the class instructor, making the session feel more like a semi-private. Plus, there’s something inexplicably peaceful and satisfying about waking up before the rest of your city.
4. You’ll burn calories while sitting at your desk
This one’s kind of a no-brainer, but it’s true. When you strength train, you continue burning calories for up to 48 hours after the workout session due to your muscles trying to repair themselves. Seems like a good deal to me.
5. It establishes a routine
This is probably my favorite reason to workout in the morning. I personally need a good, healthy routine in life because doing so allows me to know what I need to get done, and to get those things done. Having a cluttered, frantic morning raises cortisol levels and really sets the done for the day. If you’re not a routine or planning type of person, give it a try. The peace and confidence that comes with a solid routine is priceless, and adding in a morning workout is a great start.