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The Perks of Being a Morning Exerciser

Rise and run! (Photo courtesy of A.Green/Corbis)

After recently moving in with my boyfriend at the beginning of the summer, I quickly realized that a lot of my routines needed to change. I couldn't hog the remote to watch Real Housewives of New York, things like waxing, bleaching and any other hair removal techniques were to be done strictly behind closed doors, and my after work runs would need to be adjusted if I ever wanted to actually spend time with my new roomie.

So I embarked on the task of becoming a morning person. Truthfully, I've always wanted to be one of those perky people who bounced into work with their cup of coffee and have already checked off their 3-mile run on their to-do list. In reality however, the transition was not as smooth. There were a lot of cranky mornings, nightly complaints of how tired I was (where my boyfriend probably wished I was out running instead of sprawled out on the couch), and 3 p.m. slumps that no Starbucks Venti coffee could rescue me from.

But there is a happy ending to this! After two weeks of forcefully hurling myself out of bed 30-minutes earlier than my usual wake up time, I have finally transitioned to exercising in the morning and not feeling like a zombie the rest of the day. In fact, I'd go out on a limb to say I am one of those perky people I had previously envied. And it turns out that for my schedule, morning workouts have become extremely beneficial. Check out some of the bonuses below:

  • Exercising in the morning helps me sleep better at night. No more tossing and turning!
  • Oxygen is basically coffee for your brain. While I might be groggy the first few minutes, by the end of my run I feel more awake than if I had hit the snooze button three times.
  • A morning workout can jump start your metabolism, meaning you actually burn more calories all day long. Yes, please!
  • It's harder to miss a workout. When I left running to the end of my day, work, happy hour, a last-minute meeting were all things that could come in the way of my nightly sweat session. Now that running is the first thing on my list it's a lot harder to miss.
  • I have more energy. By 5 p.m. I felt sluggish and worn out. Now, it takes me a lot longer to feel drained at the end of a work day.

If you're looking to switch up your routine to the morning, give yourself two weeks to transition before you start feeling the effects. After that, you'll find that waking up is a whole lot easier and your biggest problem will be figuring out what to do with your newfound free time!

Now tell us: Are you a morning exerciser? What are your tricks to help you get up and go?

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