It’s 6 a.m. and your alarm sounds, hopefully to the beat of your favorite song rather than one of those annoying buzzers. You’re super tempted to hit snooze (like five times) and roll over for a few more zzz’s. Before you do, think about how much better your day will play out if you kill your workout now — rather than trying to convince yourself later after a long day at work.
Yes, it’s hard, really really hard, to get in that morning workout, but totally worth it. How many times have you said “I’m going to work out right when I get home” only to throw on your comfies and lounge the night away, binge-watching your favorite shows while eating a whole lot more than you should? Sound like most evenings?
Truth is, we work hard and at the end of the day, we’re tired. But we can’t lose sight of what’s important: ourselves. Eating right, sleeping and working out are essential to our well-being. So how do we fit this all into our day? By developing a solid routine and sticking to it. Get started with these five steps.
1. Wind Down and Prep the Night Before
A realistic goal is to start winding down around 9 p.m. (meal prep, put the dishes away, get the kids bathed and to bed, walk the dog, do your nightly beauty regimen, etc.) with lights out by 10. Whether it’s white noise, essential oils or reading a book, allow yourself time to unwind, letting go of the day’s worries. Be sure to set out your clothes, make your pre- and post-workout grub, fill the dog bowl, etc., the night before so it doesn’t become one of many potential excuses. After all: “Failure to prepare is preparing to fail.”
2. Get a Solid 7 to 9 Hours of Sleep
According to WebMD, most adults need 7 to 9 hours a night for the best amount of sleep. You have one body. Give it the rest it needs! If you feel drowsy during the day, even during boring activities, you haven’t had enough sleep, experts say. Read more about why getting a good night’s sleep matters at WebMD.
3. Make Yourself Get Up/Create a No-Phone Zone
Put your alarm across the room so that you have to get up and walk over to it in order to shut it off. This is also a good habit to get into if you use the alarm on your phone and like to use your phone at night. Phone lighting is not your friend when trying to sleep. In fact, it doesn’t hurt to make the bedroom (your oasis) a no-phone zone entirely.
4. Develop a ‘Whatever It Takes’ Attitude
Rise fully rested, throw on your gear, grab your pre-workout snack, feed the dog and get on your way. Now I realize if you have littles, this schedule may look a little different and that’s okay. It’s totally doable! Adjust and adapt to your situation. By that I mean, you may be going to bed when the kids do (i.e. 7 or 8 p.m.) so you can get up at 4 or 5 a.m. Implement the “whatever it takes” attitude and get it done. Once you have a routine in place, it becomes habit, and we all know that habits are hard to break.
5. Don’t Hesitate … Get to It and Get on With It!
Wrap up your workout, snag your post-workout snack, jump in the shower, and get on with the day. This way, once the day is done, you get to enjoy the time you earned with your loved ones rather than trying to convince yourself to get a workout in.
Are you an early bird or a night owl? —Nichole