It was 5:15 AM and I was setting up my spin bike one morning this week when the instructor asked a question that I often wondered: “How many of you didn’t want to get out of bed this morning and come to class?”
I looked around the room and more than half of the folks in class raised their hand. Mine was raised too. Seeing all of those hands up in the air was so validating because there are so many mornings when I want to roll over and stay in bed. Making the decision to exercise so early in the day isn’t easy - but when I started my weight loss journey almost 2 years ago, I had to find a way to fit exercise into my life on a consistent basis. I tried exercising at night - but with my kids schedules and a very demanding job, I could not commit to anything consistent.
When I considered my options, I realized that exercising early in the morning was really the only way for me to fit a lengthly workout into my day. It dawned on me that the only true time I had to myself was when the rest of the family was sleeping. So, I went to bed early that night, woke up at 4:30 the next morning and the rest is history.
My motivation to get up early is very inconsistent. On some mornings, the alarm will ring and I’ll jump out of bed and start getting ready without thinking about it; but then there are other mornings where it is more of a struggle. There are days I just don’t feel like exercising. I believe that the lack of motivation comes from what I say to myself when I first hear the alarm ring.
“Ugh. I don’t want to go today. I’ll go tonight.” Then I think about my schedule and I know that there is NO WAY I'm getting out of work in time to make any of the evening classes. That’s when I get up and start getting dressed.
“I don’t feel like it today.” I think this most days. The thought of laying in my delicious bed is so tempting, but then I consider how good I feel after class and the endorphin rush wins.
“My back hurts. My legs hurt. My *** hurts.” When these negative thoughts pop into my head, I push them away because when I’m in class, I don’t feel any of the pain. I feel invigorated and any ailments I have (physically and emotionally) just evaporate.
Ultimately, I know that when I exercise, I kick my metabolism into high gear, but more importantly, it makes me FEEL GOOD about myself. It helps me maintain my weight and I reap the emotional and the physical benefits of pushing myself hard. I feel proud of my accomplishment when class is over and I have more energy that helps me get through my very busy and usually stressful workdays.
I was talking to a friend recently and asked her how her diet was going. She had a goal to reach a 30 lb weight loss by the end of the year. She confided that she hadn’t been to the gym in a few days because of her schedule. She just couldn’t fit it in. I suggested she start going early in the morning. She laughed and said that there was no way she was going to get out of bed at that ungodly hour.
I know that being an early bird at the gym isn’t for everyone, but when you have a busy schedule with a lot of people constantly depending on you and vying for your time, knocking it out early is sometimes a great solution!
You’d be surprised by how busy the gym is when it opens at 5 AM!
Bee healthy! Bee happy!