7 Tips for Working Out in the Morning: Without Being Miserable

I'm Alex, Brave Co-founder and morning workout person.

Before you dismiss me as lycra wearing annoyance, hear me out. I'm like you. I also stare daggers at people running on Thanksgiving and like you, at one point the idea of an AM workout sounded ridiculous. I've adopted a morning workout routine because it helps me be more consistent about exercising and makes me feel better all day long.

I’m going to share the tips that helped me adopt a consistent morning workout routine. This is a list of tactics that will help you overcome inertia, save time, and feel alert so you can perform as well as you do in the evening. That said, the most important element of my routine is consistency. It was hard as hell at the beginning but it gets easier every time that alarm sounds at 6:30 AM. Keep trying and don't be too hard on yourself when you skip a day.

My tips for working out in the morning...

  1. Schedule your bedtime. I'm in bed by 11:00 PM so I can get 7 hours of sleep even if I struggle to fall asleep right away.
  2. Set a special AM workout alarm. I have a 6:30 alarm with a unique sound that I turn on when I'm working out the next morning. That sound (I can hear it now) puts me in the mindset for a workout.
  3. Plan your workout routine the night before. I use the routines provided by @dailywodz and Jim Stoppani. I also lay out all of my workout clothes the night before.
  4. Opt for group classes. The key to working out in the morning is eliminating opportunities to stay in bed. When I schedule a group class, I'm financially committed to showing up. Once I'm in the class and break a sweat I'm socially pressured to see it through to the end. I've been going to CKO Kickboxing classes lately.
  5. Caffeinate quickly. I love cappuccinos as much as the next hipster but not before a morning workout. Hot coffee takes too long to drink. I opt for an inexpensive powdered caffeine drink like Amino Energy. It's also critical that you hydrate before working out. I use water, lemon, and salt or a prepacked drink like Hydra-Charge.
  6. DO NOT check your emails. It's so easy to get dragged into a seemingly urgent late-night email thread but if it were truly urgent, someone would have texted me. I wait until after my workout to turn my work brain on.
  7. Fuel up with protein and fat... after. I do not eat before my morning workouts. After I'm through I need plenty of protein and healthy fats to keep me sharp throughout the day. Naturally, I eat Brave from my subscription box.