Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Early Morning Cardio

I just got back from the gym on my cardio day and I thought I'd do a short review the pros and cons of early morning cardio. With this topic, it's all about how much your willing to sacrifice to gain results. Early morning cardio is the best way for fatloss therefore, the cons do not have to do with the effectiveness but rather the inconvenience.


  • In the morning, your glycogen (carbohydrate) levels are depleted from being used for various bodily functions while you sleep. This low level of carbohydrates promotes fat loss and since it's the only thing left to burn, you end up burning 300% more fat than working out at any other time of the day.
  • The feeling of satisfaction you get after an early morning workout sticks with you for the entire day filling you with energy, brightening everything you do and overall making for a better day.
  • Since the stomach is empty, there are no nutrients (glycogens and fat) to burn which forces the body to burn away the older fat that is stored which is usually the hardest to get rid of.

  • Waking up early can be daunting if your not used to it and to get up out of your nice warm bed at 5:00 in the morning takes ample willpower.
  • When working out in the morning, you are slightly more prone to injury since your body has been inactive for 8-12 hours. It is imperative to stretch and warm-up to avoid damage to your muscles.
  • You may feel weak or lethargic due to the lack of glycogen(source of energy) in your system, this is actually an advantage but if you feel like you are too tired to properly perform your cardio routine, a small amount of carbohydrates in the morning can give you a boost granted. Only do this if you feel extremely tired or weak since the best state for cardio is when your glycogen levels are depleted. 
Tips for Waking Up Early: 

  1. Go to bed early, the easiest way to get up in the morning is when you feel like you've had a good night sleep.
  2. Don't think, just do. When you get up in the morning don't think of how tired you are or what time it is, just put your brain on autopilot and get up without thinking too much about it.
  3. Avoid late night snacks, caffeine, alcohol and nicotine (these are all things you should avoid regardless).
  4. Use multiple alarms. If your like me and you find the snooze button sometimes too tempting to avoid, use a second alarm that is out of your reach.
  5. Take a nap. A nap is an excellent way to stay energized throughout the day and also makes it much easier to go to bed early and wake up early
  6. Make a routine. Try to go to bed and wake up at the exact same time every day.
  7. Wake up violently. When I wake up, a technique I often use is to kick off my covers and jump out of bed as soon as I wake up and this jars me into a more wakeful state and I'm ready to start my day.
  8. At night think about your plans for the next day, this will give you incentive as well as tell your brain how important it is to wake up in the morning. 

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