I set my alarm at 0415, and I am out the door by 0445 if not earlier and I walk into the gym around 0500. That gives me just enough time to workout and shower and get to work on time! Here are some tips on how I do it!
Get yourself ready the night before
This also means going to bed earlier. If you have to get up at 0430 and you stay up until 2200 that’s not very much sleep. Start slowly going to bed earlier and you will be able to wake up easier. I usually start heading to bed around 2130.
Pack your gym bag. I have a dedicated gym bag that I use when I have to go to work after my morning workout. In there I have all of my shower items and my work clothes. I chose to pack an extra set of shower items just to keep in my gym bag so I am not constantly packing and unpacking those items. Plus, it helps decrease the chance that you are going to forget something!
If you are someone who brings their food to work, go ahead and plan out what you are going to bring. Even better if you can pack your lunchbox the night before. When we had an extra refrigerator in the garage I would pack my lunch the night before and then out the entire lunch box in the fridge. That way I could grab and go in the morning. Here I don’t have that luxury, but I still plan out my meals in MFP, myfitnesspal, the night before and stack everything together so I can just grab it and pack it in the morning. Also, don’t forget to pack yourself something to eat for breakfast!
Another thing that helps is I lay out my workout clothes the night before, in the bathroom or in the closet, so I am not fumbling around in the morning looking for what I want or need. When you get up at 0415 your brain isn’t quite firing on all cylinders if you know what I mean.
After I have all of that done I set my bags by the door, or put them in my car the night before so I know I am not going to forget something. If you are someone notorious for packing your lunch and leaving it at home, then set an alarm on your phone for 5 minutes before you are going to leave to remind you, or place your car keys somewhere by the bag so you really can’t leave without it.
Going to the gym with a plan is always the best option, but if you just normally “wing it” you may have trouble getting motivated before the sun comes up. You can even create a weekly workout plan for yourself so you know what you are going to do each day of the week!
Also make sure you allot yourself enough time. After doing my workouts for a while I have a general idea on how long it is going to take me. I know my leg days take a full hour and a half, if not longer, but I can knock out an arm workout in 45 minutes.
Obviously, you need to set your alarm so you can wake up on time. Believe me I was not always a morning person. I actually hated mornings until I started working out. I still cannot get up at 0500 and be happy about it if I am not going to the gym. I set my alarm at 0415, and this is key, GET OUT OF BED IMMEDIATELY. Seriously… If you lay there, you WILL talk yourself out of it. If you are a chronic snoozer then you may want to set your alarm in the bathroom, where you literally have to get up to shut it off.
I get up as soon as my alarm goes off, head to the bathroom, wash my face with some cold water to wake me up and change. Once you are dressed you are half way there!
Music motivates me a lot when I work out. If I listen to Pandora I will listen to House Radio, Ying Yang Twins Radio, or Today’s Hits. In the morning usually house radio… It always has a faster tempo and keeps me going!
If you can create your own playlist, pick you best songs that really get you pumped up! I even listen to them on the way into the gym while I am drinking my lemon water and pre-workout.
Fitness is more of a mental game than a physical one. You really have to set your mind to it and tell yourself you WILL get up and get to the gym!
Have an accountability buddy
If you are meeting someone at the gym you are less likely to flake out. Knowing you don’t want to be that friend who didn’t show and left your pal hanging. If you start going to early morning classes it becomes a family and they notice when you are not there!
Your buddy doesn’t have to go to your gym. Just talking to your friends and telling them this is what your plan is, they can check back with you later in the day to see how you did. The same concept of feeling like you have someone to report to really helps!
Last but not least, if you need an extra bolt of energy in the morning you can take some pre workout or some coffee. I mix up my pre workout and drink it on the way to the gym. I haven’t ever really been much of a coffee person. There are so many brands of pre-workouts out there. I can do another separate post about those if you want, but just assess your tolerance first before you go and out 2 scoops in!
Currently I am taking Optimum Nutrition Platinum Pre in Raspberry Lemonade. This is pretty strong, I wouldn’t recommend it to beginners.
Cellucor C4 if a good one for beginners, I would start with about a ½ scoop to assess your tolerance.
Getting up and getting your workout in before the sun comes up is HARD. Especially if you are not normally a morning person. It will take some getting used to. Don’t be too hard on yourself the first week! But really try to make your best effort! You will really feel so much better!
I have found that I sleep better, and I am more productive during the day because I don’t have to worry about when I am going to go to the gym.
7. Pack some extra snacks
You will probably be hungrier if you are not used to getting up early in the morning. That’s normal! When you get up early and working out you are burning more calories which requires more energy! When you are sleeping your body is in hibernation mode not using many calories. So pack some healthy snacks to get you through the day!
I hope some of these tips help! Let me know what your favorite tips are!
Until next time,