Rise and Shine… It’s Workout Time!
I have to say that I really don’t like getting up in the morning, and sadly it’s not because I’m not a morning-person. In fact, I am very cheerful and happy in the morning – even before coffee and breakfast. There are two reasons why I don’t like getting out of bed:
(1.) Usually I go to bed too late — I don’t know why, but I always take my time getting into bed, turning off all distractions, and finally shutting my eyes. I always wish that there were more hours in the day so that I could keep doing everything that I want to do.
(2.) I love cuddle-time. Justin and I could stay in bed for hours after the alarm has gone off, just snuggling and talking about things. It sounds like we are just lazy, but boy oh boy, it’s so good to cuddle in the morning!
Despite these somewhat valid reasons for not wanting to wake up earlier than I have to, I have always known that I don’t do well at exercising after work. I am usually tired, or just couldn’t be bothered to change into workout clothes and sweat it out for an hour before making dinner. It’s largely due to laziness, so I have learned that morning workouts are best since I don’t have time to procrastinate. They also set a good mood for the day, by helping you feel more energised and ready to make good, healthy food choices as the day progresses.
Since I’m pregnant and gaining (very unnecessary) weight by the day — my healthy and fitness have been even more so on my mind. In an attempt to get some good strength training and cardio in so that I can be ready and strong for the labour and recovery, I want to be sure to make the most of these last 3 months of my pregnancy.
I am going to be doing morning workouts whenever I can, and hopefully if I miss them, I still have the diligence to do some form of exercise after work. People are quick to say that pregnant women shouldn’t exercise, but this couldn’t be any further from the truth. Just like any of time in life, exercise if vital when you are pregnant. Neglecting to do this will leave you full of aches and pains, and unable to move by the middle of the third trimester. I’m trying to avoid that, so I have to start being a little more strict on myself. Sleeping-in, and morning cuddles, are amazing but my health is way more important.
If you are in the same situation as me – wanting to work out in the morning, but lacking the drive – here are some tips to help set you in the right direction:
1.) Plan your workouts for the week and know which body part and/ or exercise you will be doing the night before. Let’s face it – there’s nothing more demotivating than trying to figure out what exercise you are about to do when you only have 45 minutes to an hour before you need to shower and get ready for work! Just get up and get it done!
2.) Pack your gym bag/ Prepare your workout clothes the night before! This saves tons of valuable time in the morning, and again, leaves less room for procrastinating. I am only able to work out at home these days, so I have my trainers, clothes, heart-rate monitor, and equipment all lined up and ready in the lounge BEFORE I go to sleep.
3.) Pack your food for the following day the night before. You have to eat something before you workout, so set up a water bottle and some dry oatmeal on the counter the night before. In the morning you can add some hot water/ milk/ yogurt (whichever you prefer) and eat your breakfast without wasting too much time. When you are ready for work, you only have to grab the rest of the food you packed the night before and you’ll be on your way to a good day with no excuses for poor food choices.
4.) Find a support system for morning workouts! If you have access to a gym, make a pact with one of your friends to go together or to join a class where you KNOW you will be missed if you won’t be there. This will help hold you accountable!
5.) The alarm clock… There are a few things you can do to make waking up less traumatic. Firstly, set your alarm for 15 minutes before you ned to get up. This will give you time to ‘sleep in’ for a few minutes and make you feel like you can hit snooze one more time. I have a love-hate relationship with my snooze bottom. Hitting snooze makes me feel less “slighted” on sleep, but it also makes me stay in bed longer than I should. Secondly, use a energising alarm sound/ or song to wake you up, rather than the harsh beeping of traditional sounding alarm clocks. No one needs to wake up to that noise! Finally, place your alarm on the other side of the room – or even outside of your room – so that you physically have to get out of bed to turn it off. This trick really gets you up and moving without relying on the snooze button at all.
6.) And here’s one final tip for those who really find it hard to adjust to the morning workout schedule — Sleep in your workout clothes! It’s easier to get moving when you just have to put on your shoes, grab your packed bags and off you go!