|image credit: http://running-copenhagen.dk/tours/morning-running-tour/|
I am not a morning person. By any stretch of the imagination. So you can understand why I find getting up for the gym in the morning before work a struggle. Especially in the winter when it's pitch black and bloody freezing.
..and your bed looks like this.
Don't get me wrong, I love the idea of getting up early before the masses; seizing the day and packing in a few extra hours of productivity or leisure (and isn't there something so unbelievably smug about doing this, hangover free, on a weekend?!), but I'd be lying if I said I found it easy.
Which is why I wanted to share my tips on how I drag my arse out of bed when the alarm goes off at an ungodly hour. I think it's especially relevant as we enter the festive period; there are post-work events and evening dos coming out my ears, tempting my post-work workouts away, making morning workouts all the more important.
1) Get everything packed and ready
Packing my bag the night before saves a good fifteen minutes of faffing in the morning (read, an extra fifteen minutes in bed), and means you can just throw your kit on and get out the door.
I pack everything so my bag is ready to be grabbed in a bleary eyed hurry the next morning, without me having to think about whether I've packed a bra or deodrant (forgetting your towel and having to dry yourself with your sweaty gym leggings is never ok).
2) Don't wash your hair the night before
Something I find that spurs on my morning gym routine is not washing my hair the night before. Is that gross?! I would never usually wash my hair on a weekday morning as it takes far too long. So, if my hair could *probably* do with (/really needs) a wash, I purposely won't wash it the night before, as it helps me get up and get to the gym, where I'll wash it quickly (for some bizarre reason I'm always about ten times faster in the gym shower than I am at home. Why?!?). Whereas if I have freshly washed hair I'm less likely to go. Bizarre, but it works for me.
3) Go with a friend
I went through a phase of going swimming before work, and my god it was made so much easier going with a friend. We'd arrange to meet at a particular time and go together. No one wants to be waiting on their own in the dark or cold, and no one wants to be that friend who lets your partner in crime down.
4) Plan your workout
If you know what you're getting up for, it instantly gives you more purpose and drive, I find. I tend to map out my workouts the night before, jotting down the areas of my body I'll focus on, and specific workouts to do. I find Instagram really useful for workout inspiration (hashtags like #wod, #workoutoftheday, #hiitworkout, and accounts like @thebodycoach are good places to start).
5) Reward yourself with your favourite breakfast
I always have a really hearty, tasty breakfast on training days. If I train in the morning I'll train fasted, and I always look forward to eating my overnight oats at the office!
Plus...you get to post smug Instagram photos such as the one below!
These points help me get up and at em on a weekday morning, you might have even better ones - I'd love to know if so!