A lot of you have made the comment, "Man, I wish I was a morning person. If I could wake up early like you do to do my workouts, I would workout more often. I just can't do it because I'm not a morning person." --- or something like that.
Here's the deal -- you can do it. You just have to retrain your body.
And it's so worth it. The reality is, stuff is often going to come up in the evening. You'll have all the right intentions of heading to spin class after work and then your boss will ask you to stay late or your friends will propose an awesome, unmissable hangout opportunity. And then you bail on your workout, over and over.
Most likely, people aren't going to ask you to hangout at 6am. That time is always available for you time, if you take advantage of it.
Here are my tips to becoming the type of person who wakes up in the morning and gets their sweat on:
1. Start gradually
If you normally wake up at 9, don't just abruptly try to start waking up at 7. You're going to hate it and be exhausted all day. When you try to make a huge change like that, you often can only keep it up for a day or two before you crash back into your regular late-rising routine. Instead, set an end goal and get there in small increments. Try waking up 15 minutes earlier for 3 days. Then 15 minutes earlier than that, and so on. This will help create lasting habits.
2. Go to bed earlier
Decide when you want to wake up, and then figure out when you need to go to bed to get 7-8.5 hours of sleep. Stick to it. Create a relaxing bedtime routine to help you start going to bed earlier. Drink some decaffeinated herbal tea, read a book, take a bubble bath, listen to relaxing music -- whatever you need to do to get yourself sleepy.
3. Set your alarm
Again, set it for around 15 minutes earlier than normal at first, and don't snooze it. Put your alarm clock far away from your bed. When it goes off, jump out of bed, turn it off and get started with your day. Snoozing is dumb. As much as it feels like you're getting more rested, it doesn't really help you to feel rested throughout the day. Plus, it's only 15 minutes. You can totally do that.
4. Set your workout stuff aside the night before
Part of your nighttime routine should be to place your workout clothes, shoes, gloves, mat, headphones, etc. beside your bed. You don't want to have to look for that stuff when you're feeling groggy. Fill your water bottle and put it in the fridge. This way, all you have to do is get up and change -- minimal effort is key.
5. Try using cold water
Wash your face with cold water when you get up. Get those crusties out of your eyes and wake up! Cold water will help you feel more alive, and it will also help to get rid of under eye puffiness. Also, go grab a sip of the your cold water bottle you put in the fridge the night before. Start hydrating for your workout as soon as you get up.
6. Create an environment that makes it easier to wake up
Replace your thick curtains with some sheer ones. That way, you can't really sleep past sunrise. This has really helped me. Another thing you can do is create a motivation board that is viewable from bed. On it, you can have pictures of an upcoming beach vacation venue, or pictures of you wearing clothes that you no longer fit into, or motivational quotes, or pictures of happy and healthy people -- whatever works for you. This will help to remind you the purpose of why you're waking up early.
7. Have a plan
Don't make a workout decision after you wake up, because you're likely to decide to sleep instead. Have a workout planned, and get up and do it. I usually like to plan my workout schedule a week in advance, but right now, I have my workouts planned for the next 10 weeks.
8. Maintain your early morning routine
Don't try to only wake up early a couple days a week. Your body responds better to a consistent schedule. If you're not workout out every day, use that extra time to do laundry, read a book, tidy up, practice an instrument, or whatever. You'll be amazed by home much more productive you become when you start waking up earlier! Even on the weekends, I don't sleep past 8. My body is just used to waking up early now.
This will all get easier with time. Your body will get used to the routine, and as you increase your workouts, it will be easier for you to go to bed earlier and get quality sleep. And once you start seeing productivity results, you won't want to turn back to your night owl ways.
Give it a try, and let me know how it goes.
Do you guys have any other waking up tips? Comment below.