More Pros and Cons to Early Morning Exercise

Morning exercise: Get up, get it over with, thank me later. (Photo by D'Arcy Norman.)

(Photo by D'Arcy Norman)

The good news is that this is the second week that I have gotten up at (a little after) 5 a.m. to go to 5:30 or 5:45 a.m. gym classes on Tuesdays and Thursdays. As you may remember, the first week was agonizing.

Now that I’ve finished my second week, I can see the benefits from early morning exercise at work in me. However, they have brought a few small, (hopefully) temporary pitfalls.

The Pros of My Early Morning Exercise:

  • I have more overall energy. I still get tired spells here and there throughout the day, but they aren’t as intense or anywhere near as long as they used to be.
  • I can concentrate better and longer at work.
  • I have a much more positive outlook on the day ahead of me.

Wow, this pretty much sums up why I feel so great:

“Morning exercise revs the metabolism and jump-starts energy levels, actually accelerating your ability to burn calories,” says Amy Burleson Sullivan, PsyD, clinical health psychologist in the primary care section at the Dayton VA Medical Center in Dayton, Ohio. (Quick shoutout to Ohio!) “It gets the endorphins flowing so that when you’re finished you have greater acuity, less anxiety, improved mood, and increased ability to concentrate, all of which contribute to a better day,” Sullivan explains.

It’s like she read my mind. (Check out the rest of Kristen Stewart’s article at Everyday Health, and get tips to stay motivated for morning exercise.)

The Cons of My Early Morning Exercise:

  • I drink more coffee now. I have a cup of coffee with breakfast in addition to the mug of coffee I then drink in the mornings at work.
  • I am mentally and physically exhausted by 9 p.m. now, which has negatively affected my daily writing habits. (My apologies for my sporadic posting schedule lately.)

Whether I get up at 5 a.m. or 8 a.m., it sucks. Getting up anytime before noon is painful for me. So really, the 5 a.m. thing isn’t so bad. I’m optimistic that I’ll eventually cut out the extra cup of coffee, and maybe after week three, I won’t be wiped out by 9 p.m.

Next week, I’m shooting to double the early morning workouts. I’ll do a spinning class on Monday and Wednesday, a Strength Endurance Training (SET) class on Tuesday and a weightlifting class on Thursday.

Let’s see if I can keep this healthy habit up.

Goals Update:

I accomplished my three most important things from the other day:

  • I went to my dentist appointment. Yeah, yeah, I know I need to floss more and that I need my wisdom teeth out. My dentist also offered me $50 off teeth whitening, which I’m still mulling over.
  • I went to my tanning appointment. Today, I went to my last appointment in my package. (Yes, I am aware of the multitude of studies and articles (such as this one from Mayo Clinic) that show tanning beds — and tanning in general — put you at risk for skin cancer, especially melanoma. I’m doing this for a special occasion; I don’t do it on a regular basis.)
  • I picked up the ribbon for our wedding cake baker whom I need to dedicate an entire post to at another time. Yes, she is that amazing.

My 3 Most Important Things for Saturday:
(Fridays are my day off from self-improvement.)

  • Go to yoga.
  • Work on our wedding planning checklist so meticulously laid out on The Knot because oh yeah, that’s right, we’re now down to the less-than-30-days mark. I could never have been so calm and organized with our wedding without this website. It is a must-have tool for every bride-to-be.
  • You know what? I’m going to just leave it at that because we’ve got a lot on our plates with wedding stuff.
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This entry was posted in Fitness and Exercise Goals, Goals, Habits, Happiness Goals, Productivity Goals, Wedding Goals and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to More Pros and Cons to Early Morning Exercise

  1. Timory Wilson says:

    Way to be Laura Lee! I am so proud of you for getting up early to workout. I love your pros and cons! I went through the same thing.

    My tips: the extra cup of coffee is needed for awhile but eventually you’ll be able to do without it. I have decaf tea instead sometimes which is nice. It still allows me to drink something hot. Or I have decaf coffee. The “I am so exhausted I can’t move or make sense of words or even listen to my friend (fiancee in your case” at 9 p.m. hits me about once a week. I am usually dead tired on Thursday nights. However, it depends on how busy my week has been until that point. Since you are getting up every day at the same time next week, then I bet your body will benefit from the consistency and be more awake. With that said, Tuesdays are my hardest days to focus and stay awake.:)

    OK, I wrote enough. I hope my tips helped!! I can’t wait to see you!

  2. Laura Lee Bloor says:

    Thanks, Timory! I also notice that I sleep like a rock now, which I read is another pro to morning exercise. In fact, I slept right through the 5 a.m. alarm Mr. Man set for himself this morning!

    Your tips are much appreciated.

  3. at276601 says:

    I have to get up at 5 a.m. everyday to be browbeaten by a grizzled newspaper editor who keeps the schedule of an Amish ranch hand with an amphetamine habit. I consider that my emotional workout.
    Then at seven, my OTHER boss comes in.

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