11 Tips for Waking Up Earlier to Workout
1. Hit the pillow early
Okay, first things first, you’ll need to go to bed early in order to wake up early and feel well rested. Turn off electronics 45 minutes before bed, dim the lights, do 15 minutes of evening stretches, read a book, wash your face and brush your teeth. Setting a good bedtime routine at a good hour will not only help your sleep, but it’ll also help you wake up feeling refreshed in the mornings.
2. Keep the alarm away from your bed.
Doing this means that you will actually have to get up and out of bed in order to shut it off. Even better than that, you can set more than one alarm. Setting multiple alarms close together (10-12 minutes apart) will ensure that you won’t fall back into R.E.M sleep, and it’ll be easier to wake up. You can also get alarms that vibrate if you need that extra bit of sensory prompting to get you up and out of bed.
3. Use an app
There are apps specifically designed to help you wake up during the lightest part of your R.E.M cycle which will help you feel more rested and make it easier to wake up. We particularly like Sleep Cycle Alarm Clock. Using your smartphone’s built-in accelerometer, Sleep Cycle monitors your movement while you sleep. The app can differentiate between deep sleep and light sleep. It helps users wake up in their lightest sleep phase when they will feel naturally rested. Sleep Cycle comes with 15 alarm melodies and a customizable wake-up window, ranging from instant to 90 minutes.
4. Flip a switch
Try using your parent’s age-old trick of turning on a blinding light as soon as the alarm goes off. It may have been the worst, but remember how well it used to work? There’s nothing more startling to the senses than hearing that alarm go off, following by a flick of the switch. We promise it’ll help you reach for that first cup of coffee rather than the covers.
5. Warm up the room
With fall upon us, we’re ready to brace ourselves for those cool early mornings. Luckily, there are thermostats that you can set to warm up the house before you get out of bed. Rather than tucking right back under those warm covers, try setting the heat to 23 degrees – ready for when you get up. It will make it much easier to get up and embrace the morning. Hot coffee helps too!
6. Have breakfast ready and waiting
When you’re looking at a 5:30am wake up call, the last thing you want to do is wake up feeling hangry and have to stand around prepping a meal. It’s best practice to have your breakfast ready and waiting for your wakeup call. Try the recipes for these Easy Overnight Oats, Apple Cinnamon Breakfast Cookies, or No-Bake Pumpkin Spice Energy Bars to nourish your body in the morning. They’re quick, easy, and oh-so delicious!
7. Make it a habit
You need to turn your life goals into daily habits. A routine is something you do every day without fail, so that eventually, like brushing your teeth or putting on your seatbelt, you do it without conscious thought. Just as investments compound over time, so do our daily actions. So taking this into account, your goal is to become a morning workout person. That’s great! Implementing these daily habits of going to bed early, setting multiple alarms, turning on a light, or having breakfast ready will all create a Compound Effect. A compound effect is the principle of reaping huge rewards from a series of small, smart choices. Success is earned in the moment to moment decisions that in themselves make no visible difference whatsoever, but the accumulated compounding effect is profound.
8. Have a group you can’t let down
Find a good group to workout with by gathering some friends or finding a small group training class to motivate you. While you might not always want to go to the workout, you’ll probably always want to see your workout buddies. Not to mention, if you sign up for a class and don’t provide enough cancelation notice, you’ll get charged for the class. Which means that that last minute decision to hit the snooze button isn’t really an option. Momentum has early morning small group training classes to get you up and moving. Check out the schedule and sign-up here.
9. Pack your bag
Check to see what the morning workout will be and pack your bag accordingly. Packing and choosing the right workout gear in advance is essential to getting up and out the door early. When I pack my bag the night before, I include an extra plastic bag for sweaty clothes and my second stash of toiletries, so I never forget deodorant or quick-cleansing wipes for low-intensity workouts. I make sure that I remember my water bottle, gym shoes and earphones. When I know I’m going to go hard during my workout, I pack a towel and change of clothes so I can shower at the gym.
10. Pick your tunes
I always have an excellent playlist to motivate me first thing in the morning, during my commute to the gym, and during my workout. This playlist screams “Good morning, sunshine!” with its upbeat, high-energy songs. Momentum creates playlists in Apple Music for you to listen to and share with friends. For me, music dictates the way I move and the intensity in which I move. It helps to put a pep in my step on those early mornings when I need a boost of energy.
11. Do it no matter what. No excuses!
It’s all about consistency. Schedule your workout as if it’s an important meeting with yourself. You would never cancel a meeting last minute simply because you felt like hitting the snooze button. Treat yourself with the same amount of respect as you would with any other person, and you’ll reap the rewards. Even if you’re not feeling the workout that day, if you just get up and go through the motions, you’ll feel much better for it. Use these tips list to eliminate the barriers (and the excuses) for an early morning workout so you do it, no matter what.