Mornings with little ones can be rough and frantic. It also sets the tone for the rest of your day to be as crazy as you started it. No wonder it’s difficult for moms to find time for doing some exercise. But here’s a thought: schedule an early morning workout that starts before your kids get up. No, really! It’s not as hard as it sounds.
If you’re skeptical about making this work, click through for the top benefits of morning exercise for mommies. Soon, you’ll want to rise, shine and get that heart pumping.
Get in a full workout
When you start your day before your children wake up, it’s quieter, less hectic and therefore more productive. In those quiet moments before the storm you’ll better serve your own body. You can hop on that treadmill or do living room yoga without worrying about demands. The only direction you’ll be pulled in is where your body takes you.
Say goodbye to your mom pooch
Exercise in the beginning of the day gets all your systems jump-started. It boosts your metabolism for the day when you need it, instead of at night when it’s not as beneficial. Your body will burn more calories throughout the day while you’re getting things done. Plus, you’ll have more energy to tackle your to-do list — all because of that little extra time you took to sweat in the AM.
Enjoy the silence
In the quiet mornings, after your workout, you may find yourself with a little extra time before the kiddos wake up. This can be an opportunity to finally read that novel on your book list. Or maybe invest more time in your beauty routine. You’ll be reminded of your own personhood aside from your kids so you don’t get lost in your role as mother.
Run a tight ship
Perhaps you’d rather take the time after your workout to set up breakfast and pack lunches. The kids will wake up hungry but will fuss less knowing that food is already made and ready to be gobbled up. With all this prep time, you’ll feel less rushed and be less likely to forget anything before taking the kids to school.
A morning workout will put you in the “go-go-go” mentality that can further motivate you to get things done. You’ll get a head start on your tasks while you ride the momentum a jump-started morning provides. Exercise keeps you alert and your muscles warmed and limber, so you have less stress and aches holding you back from your day.
Be a happy influence
You’ll have a good day from the beginning so your family has one too. It’s always best to start the day on the right foot so you’re better able to handle any challenges that arise. Working out is the best source of endorphins that you can give yourself. Endorphins keep you happy and are natural antidepressants. The more often you get a morning dose of this happy drug, the more smiley you can be for yourself and your family. Plus, it’s better than having to undo your stress at the end of the day.
Keep on track
When you make your workout your first priority in the day, it’s easier to accomplish and maintain. You won’t have any distractions or hang-ups to hold you back. There will be no scrambling to squeeze it in after work or between errands. Once you commit to a morning routine, slacking will make it feel like you didn’t start the day right, thus you’ll keep at it.
Beat the traffic
Depending on when you wake up for your early workout, you can likely enjoy it fairly privately. If dad is home to watch the kids in the morning you can get out of the house for some fresh air – without an audience. Gyms before 8a .m. are not as crowded, so there won’t be competition for equipment. And the neighborhood is still pretty sleepy, so your nosy neighbors won’t stare as you run around the block.
Keep your dinner dates
Since you make your body the focus of the start to your day, you reserve and protect that time for nothing else. Not a lot is happening kid- or work-wise in the early morning, so you won’t have to scratch your workout due to a parent-teacher conference or some random playground fiasco. You’re free to just do you.
Make room for health
When you’re burning those calories in the AM, you’re more likely to crave a big, healthy breakfast. This will help ensure that you try to eat well for the most important meal of the day. It will most likely keep you full until lunch, so you won’t overeat. Plus, you’d be more motivated to maintain the progress you made in the morning and approach each meal afterwards with more mindfulness.
Enjoy some grown-up time
Since working out gets the blood flowing, it can definitely facilitate arousal. Plus exercise is known to help with depression and anxiety. With a little exercise effort in the mornings, you’ll be less stressed about your motherly duties so you can focus more on those wifely privileges.
Knock out faster
Working out has long been linked to improved sleeping habits. It gives you just enough stress to boost your energy for the day without harming you. Then it makes your body crave sleep later to undo the stress. As long as you don’t work out too close to bed time, you could be enjoying a restful night regularly.
Bend your workout to your own needs
The most important thing to keep you motivated with your workout is to take it easy. Don’t be too hard on yourself if you miss a day. Also remember that your workout doesn’t have to be super intense for it to be worthwhile. A simple 10 minute jog can still do some good. As long as you intently try to remember the purpose of your workout, you’re more likely to succeed at it.