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If you feel like you have no energy to workout in the morning, know that you definitely aren’t alone. Maybe you have set fitness goal for yourself and are excited to start your new routine of waking up for early morning workouts. While you may have the best intentions, you quickly find that the moment your alarm goes off, you feel like staying instead of sweating out in the gym or spin class.
So why do you feel like you have no energy to workout in the morning? There are many factors that may contribute to that sluggish and tired feeling you have right before, during, and after your early morning workout. Even though you may be excited to give it 100% at 6am, sometimes you just feel way too exhausted.
But fear not! There are very simple solutions to your sluggish start to the day. But first, let’s figure out why exactly you feel so tired in the morning to begin with.
Why Don’t I Have Energy to Workout in the Morning?
There are numerous reasons why you aren’t waking up super psyched to jump on your bike for a 6am spin class. Different factors come into play regarding your energy levels and body function. The more in tune you are with your body, the better you may be able to control and amp up your early morning energy.
Your body’s temperature
When you workout in the morning, your muscles are not as warmed up as they would be if you were to work out later in the day. Because your muscles have had time to warm up, often, a later workout feels stronger and more flexible and your muscles don’t get tired as quickly. If you are looking to workout in the morning, make sure that you stretch and warm up before you start so that you don’t get tired too quickly.
No food to fuel your body
Its a good idea to always eat something after you workout and depending on your body and its needs, possibly before your morning workout as well. Whether it’s a banana or a handful of almonds, this will fuel your body and help you from feeling exhausted before you even step onto the treadmill. Your body digests your food while you are sleeping, so your tiredness during your morning workouts may be due to the fact that your body needs more fuel to function.
Not enough sleep
Sleeping at 1am and then waking up at 5am for your favorite bootcamp class? Its super important to give your body the rest it needs and you should try to give yourself at least 7 hours of solid sleep every single night. Set up a sleep schedule everyday so that you feel energized and ready to go every morning.
One of the best things that you can do right when you wake up is to drink a tall glass of water. Working out without being properly hydrated beforehand can lead to tiredness, exhaustion, nausea and headaches. It’s crucial to hydrate not only after your workout, but before and during as well.
How Can I Get Energy to Workout in the Morning?
Now that you are aware of the different reasons you may feel too exhausted to step out of bed and into the gym in the morning, you can make little changes to give yourself more energy for your early morning workout.
- Warm up: Make the time to stretch and warm up your muscles before your workout. Whether this is quick yoga routine or a walk or bike ride the gym, take the time to warm up before you begin.
- Prepare your snacks: Before you go to bed at night, set up the snacks that you will need pre and post workout. Depending on your body, you may notice you need a pre-workout snack in addition to your post workout snack.
- Sleep: You may need to set up an earlier bedtime to ensure that you are feeling fresh in the morning. Use an app on your phone to track your sleep schedule and remind you to go to bed at the same time every night.
- Drink water: Before you go to bed, set up your water bottle to take with you to your gym session the next day. Right when you get up, have a tall glass of water to rehydrate after your night’s sleep. You can even add half a lemon to your water for added energy and improved digestion.
Related: Intermittent Fasting Morning Workout
Still having trouble dragging yourself out of bed? These extra tips may come in handy—
- Have a workout buddy: It may be your yoga buddy or a group of runners, but if you have someone else to hold you accountable, you are more likely to get out of bed for your early morning workout.
- Get in the shower: There is nothing like a cold shower to wake your body up! Don’t have time for a shower? Splash some cold water on your face to get yourself moving.
- Set everything up the night before: From your clothes to snacks, set everything that you need out before you go to bed so that all you need to do is wake up, brush your teeth, and go.
How Do I Not Get Tired After Working Out in the Morning?
It is 7am, you just finished your gym session and you still have a whole day of work ahead of you. The only problem is that you are already absolutely exhausted and ready to call it a day.
As important as it is to fuel and take care of your body before and during your workout, it’s equally important to take care of your body after your workout. To be sure that you still have energy for the rest of your day, make sure to do the following—
- Take a cold shower: There’s nothing like a nice, cool shower after an intense sweat session. Cold showers help to decrease inflammation in your body and are a pretty great way to wake up after working so hard.
- Hydrate: Drink lots of water after your workout and don’t forget to rehydrate with electrolytes as well. This may be with coconut water or an energy drink, but try to skip the super sugary ones with lots of additives.
- Refuel: It is so important to eat after your workout as your body needs to energy to fuel itself. Have a healthy breakfast of protein, healthy fats and carbs to get you going for the rest of your day.
- Stretch: In addition to stretching before your workout, cool down and stretch afterwards. If feel really tight after your workout, you may feel depleted and exhausted so make sure to get your energy moving and open up your body with a few stretches.
Energy producing foods
What we put into our bodies greatly affects how we feel throughout the day. If you tend to reach for fatty, oily, or sugary foods for energy, it is likely that you may feel sluggish, tired, or depleted instead of energized and ready for a strong workout.
Feed your body with healthy fats and energy producing snacks to kick start your day or refuel after an intense workout. All of these foods can be easily prepared before or after a workout, and you can stash it in your bag or office for a quick pick me up throughout your day
- Bananas: This snack is easy to take along with you anywhere you go and is filled with nutrients and vitamins. Bananas provide you with the energy you need before a workout and are also great post-workout snacks providing you with potassium and protein.
- Peanut butter: Some brands of peanut butter are packed with sugar, so try to go the healthier route by purchasing all-natural peanut butter. Nut butters provide you with tons of energy and have healthy fats, making them a great snack on a banana, rice cake, or even on its own!
- Almonds: Filled with Vitamin B and Magnesium, almonds are a popular snack pre and post workout. Grab a few by the handful and refuel with this healthy snack.
- Yogurt: Greek yogurt provides a great amount of protein in one serving, and when paired with fruits or nuts, it can make for an energizing breakfast pre or post workout. When buying your yogurt, skip the brands with lots of sugar and flavorings.
- Oatmeal: Whether it’s a bowl of hot oatmeal or overnight oats with your favorite nut milk, oats provide you with tons of energy and fuel your body for the day. Oats are filled with fiber and help you to feel fuller longer while stabilizing your blood sugar levels.
What stretches should I do to warm up? It is a good idea to open up your hips, hamstrings, chest, and spine before you workout. Check out these 3 full body stretches to open everything up.
Is it better to workout at night or in the morning? While your muscles are more open after a full day, some people prefer to workout in the morning because it sets them up for the day. This is a personal preference, so try both out to see which works better for you.
Mariel is a writer and NYC-based yoga teacher. She has been teaching for a decade and is a life-long student of the ancient practice.