The Good Habit: Exercise every day first thing in the morning
Daily exercise is good for you. Actually, it is VERY good for you. We all know this, it´s no news.
Then why on earth do we struggle so much with it? Why is it so difficult for so many of us to stick to a daily exercise regime? Because we don´t make it a habit, a routine. If we have to think about it, to plan it in, to “negotiate” (more often with ourselves than with anybody else) how to fit it into our day and what will have to give instead… well, then the chances of it NOT happening increase.
So how do we make this a thing that goes on autopilot, like brushing our teeth or parking the car? I have tried it all and ultimately the only thing that works for me is to incorporate exercise into my mourning routine, so I get it out of the way asap. And by God I swear I HATE having to do so, as I am just so not a morning person: “it´s cold, it´s dark, I am tired and asleep, I am hungry…”, all these thoughts inundate my mind every single morning at 5:30 when my alarm goes off. But mercilessly I follow my ritual:
- sit up in bed, drink water
- get out of bed
- pee, brush teeth
- get dressed in sports gear
- go to kitchen prepare green juice (or tea if really, really cold outside)
- get out the door
The reality is that I do feel great the moment I set foot out the door and certainly once I am done with it. It feels like the biggest achievement. It sets me up for a better day. It gets the endorphins going. The day ahead may be crap, however just these 30-40 minutes are an achievement on its own.
So whatever it is you like doing: running, walking, going to the gym, for a swim, yoga, biking … it does not matter, try to make it a daily habit to do it, as soon as you wake up. You don´t need to make it long, either. 10-15 minutes as a starter should be enough to get you into the habit.
Try the 7 Minute Workout App if you don´t know where to start. Try Runkeeper if you prefer to walk, jog or run.
There are only 3 things that you will need to do beforehand, to make this happen:
- Go to bed earlier and wake up earlier. Another Good Habit, which I want to talk about)
- Lay out your clothes the night before, so you don´t have to think about what to wear at 5am
- Decide the night before – or better plan the entire week ahead – what you will be doing, again so you don´t have to think and make decisions at 5am
I hope you can start building this good habit into your day to day soon. How about tomorrow?