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The Benefits of Early-Morning Exercise

Why shifting your workout to the morning could make a whole world of change

When I think of what an ideal morning looks like for me, working out isn’t at the top of the list. In fact, it’s not really on my list at all when it comes to the early morning. However, I have recently made the effort to incorporate a workout before my day starts at least once a week.

A morning workout (walk, run, lift, yoga session, etc.) can add many benefits on top of what it provides in and of itself in a way that working out in the evening can’t.

One of the most important of these benefits is increased energy throughout the day. During a workout, oxygen and nutrients are directed to your heart and lungs, resulting in an increase in energy and reduction in fatigue. While this may only explain why exercise in general is beneficial, a morning workout may serve the purpose of eliminating the grogginess we often feel at the beginning of a day at work or school.

Morning exercise also improves focus, something that I’m sure we all could use more of on a daily basis. A study conducted by the British Journal of Medicine found that simply 30 minutes of exercise (a walk on the treadmill in this case) was associated with heightened cognition during the day. On the days of the week that I have mustered up enough dedication to go to the gym in the morning, I have noticed I have been more focused and attentive in my classes than the days when I roll out of bed and rush to my first class of the day.

I’m still working on this change in my weekly routine. It’s certainly not easy to wake up early and get active right away, but starting the morning with a workout, even just once a week to start, can be an important step in leading healthier, more productive lives.

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