Spring is finally here…the mornings are getting lighter…the days are getting longer and warmer…and summer clothes are looming! You would think all these motivators would help us to spring out of bed in the morning to get our exercise done, feel great for the day and give us the boost of energy we love, yes? If you’re squirming in your chair right now thinking “erm, nope, I still can’t quite manage it”, you’re probably not the only one! Follow our top eight tips to get yourself out of bed in the morning to exercise:
#1:Try to get enough sleep When you sleep, yes your body rests, but it also does a lot of other things too so that you can function at optimal levels during the day – cells are healed, your immune system is boosted, muscles recover from their day, your heart and cardiovascular system are recharged too. All of this takes time and 7-8 hours sleep is key to let our body do its night shift jobs. If your body doesn’t get a chance to properly recharge, you are already starting the next day at a disadvantage that can place strain on your nervous system and overall health. If you need to, try going to bed earlier when you know you’re getting up earlier in the morning so you can get your 7-8 hours of sleep.
#2: Don’t hit snooze One way to get straight out of bed in the morning to exercise is to stick to a ‘no snooze’ rule. Rather than setting your alarm earlier than you need to get up and hitting snooze time after time, don’t give yourself the option – set your alarm for the time you absolutely have to get up to be able to fit your exercise session in and take your finger off that snooze button!
#3: Put your alarm at the other side of the room If tip number two doesn’t work and you still find that your alarm goes off but you’re not getting up out of bed, try putting your alarm at the other side of the room. When your alarm goes off you will have no choice but to get out of bed to go and switch it off – and once you’re out of bed you might as well stay out of bed and go to your exercise session. Jen Ator, Women's Health's fitness director says: "Successfully getting up early in the morning to work out is all about removing as many obstacles and excuses as possible," and she puts her alarm on top of her running shoes by the front door so she has to get up to turn it off.
#4: Have your clothes set out ready The more prepared you are to go out and exercise, the easier it’s going to be. The last thing you want to be doing at 6am is rummaging around trying to find your clothes and training shoes in the dark – it would be so much easier to just stay in bed and not bother. So pick your clothes the night before and set them out ready to put on quickly and effortlessly.
#5: Have your playlist ready to go Research suggests that music directly affects exercise motivation – increasing mental arousal, waking us up and giving us a beat to move to. Having an exercise playlist ready to pop in your ears the moment you wake up is a great way to get you in the mood to exercise, just make sure it’s something upbeat and motivating!
#6: Get minty fresh Make brushing your teeth or popping a mint into your mouth the first thing you do as you wake up. The minty fresh taste will wake up your taste buds, your mind and your body, ready to get up and go.
#7: Meet a friend or PT A smart way to make sure you get out of bed to exercise is to make yourself accountable to someone else! If you arrange to meet a friend at the gym or you’ve locked in and already paid for a Personal Training session it’s highly likely that you’ll get out of bed for it so you don’t let them down.
#8: Do something you enjoy It’s a lot easier to get out of bed to do something you enjoy than something you don’t. If running isn’t your thing, don’t force yourself to go on an early morning run just because your friend/sister/colleague does it. Find something you like doing – it might be boxing, group training, yoga, body weight strength exercises – and make that your morning exercise of choice. It will be it a lot easier to get out of bed for.