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Early workouts. Years ago I liked to sleep late. I did some pushups but my body was weak. It was soft. As I trained as a bodybuilder I learned to lift early.
This worked. My 5 AM, 4 AM and even 3:30 AM workouts transformed my body into the stud I am today. People gasp when they glimpse my big muscles.
Special benefits. Early exercise has special benefits. I share some research here. I roll out of bed every morning at around 3 AM or 4 AM to work out.
Note: Fortunately I do not physically roll out of bed, as that might end up being painful.
And: Early workouts are something I have placed increasing emphasis on in my life as I have grown.
Morning exercise: Often easiest to stick to. Exercise professionals recommend it. The morning has fewer interruptions.
Long-term exercisers: They tend to work out in the morning. This schedule seems to lead to fewer dropouts.
Easier. Early workouts are easier to keep up. Let's review some of the literature. One book I consulted was the Fitness Professional's Handbook.
And: It suggests morning exercise is often easiest. There are fewer things to do in the morning.
Exercising in the morning may be easier to stick with than exercising during the day when numerous demands compete for time.Fitness Professional's Handbook
My experience. I have found early workouts are easier to handle. Morning exercise is done when you have energy after the night's sleep. And there are no phone calls.
Further: There are no television programs to watch and fewer emails to answer. Life is simpler.
4 AM. It is important to start your day off right: not with sugary donuts but with a good workout. This changes so many things about your health.
Life: With an increased level of health and fitness, other aspects of your life fall into place.
Tip: You will be able to work more efficiently after your 4 AM workout is over with.
Then: At night, you will have a much easier time of getting to sleep with adequate exercise at 4 AM.
A magic hour. This hour is magical in special ways. It is a private time. You don't have the burden of all the stressors in life piling up on your shoulders again.
And: For me, 4 in the morning is the best part of the day. I haven't yet started worrying.
Endorphins. These are chemicals released by workouts. They make me feel even more positive. This effect has lessened over the years. I am usually done with my workout by 6 AM.
And: After that point, the worries in my life, the constant burden of stress, start to push me back down.
Some tips. I don't know if these reasons will convince anyone to start exercising at 4 AM. But I know there are others who also get up early to work out.
Magical: It is for them, too, a magical experience—something to be cherished and not resented.
So: If I see you at the gym at 4 AM, I hope you can sense the positivity from me at that special hour.
Notice: Just don't catch me on a day where I didn't get in a workout. I would probably be miserable and unhappy.
Get up early. I get up sometime between 4 AM and 5 AM every morning to hit the gym. This is not because I am a disciplined person who likes torturing myself.
Instead: It is because I look forward to my exercise, which helps me improve my health.
Note: Early exercise routines are more likely to be successful. I provide tips for getting up early to work out.
Bedtime. I find it easier to get up early when I go to bed early. Sometimes I even go to bed at 8 PM to help prepare myself for my early workout.
But: If you have a wild night life and cannot go to sleep that early, it is probably best to skip early workouts.
Make it a habit. Unfortunately, as with all things exercise-related, having practiced doing something many times makes it much easier.
And: For this reason, you have to just keep doing the routine until it becomes habitual.
Coffee. Without coffee, I can't get going on my workout. Coffee and tea actually have certain health-improving properties. They can help you build muscle.Coffee
Enjoyment. It is easier to work out when you enjoy doing it. This means it is probably a bad idea to do anything you hate. It will be easier to get up each morning.
Get up. Getting up early to exercise is a hard thing to do. But it may also be rewarding. I encourage everyone to try this—see if you can do it regularly before giving up.
And: If you have done the early-morning routine before, and disliked it, then you know better than to try it again.
But: If you have not, I recommend that you try an early morning workout routine. Go to bed earlier and see if you get up earlier.
Benefits. I am an early morning exerciser. Almost every day, I get up at 3 AM to start my exercise routine. As a bodybuilder, I prefer heavy lifting.
Warning: I realize this lifestyle is not possible for every person. But I thought I would talk about some of its benefits.
Next: I offer some tips on how to exercise in the early AM. Early morning exercise has many benefits.
First benefit. Getting up early to exercise is intuitive. It is automatic. Think about it—what else is there to do at 4 or 5 AM? There are not many options for entertainment.
Info: The stock market is not open, no one is around to call on your phone, you won't get any calls.
And: Most restaurants are not open, stores are not open, and no one is at your workplace.
So: Exercise is more automatic because there are no other temptations at this time of day.Motivation Details
Cool. It is cool in the morning. This means that you might not need sunscreen most of the time. A hat could do instead. The cool air might invigorate you.
Warm up: The cold might make you more motivated to get warmed up. You need to get the blood pumping.
Tip: As with most things exercise-related, your mindset is key. When you get your early exercise, you can feel good afterwards.
Diet. Because you recently exercised, you will also be more likely to stick to your diet. The early exercise seems to help people stay motivated throughout the day.
Times. Everyone has a favorite time to work out. I have presented evidence that early workouts are the most likely to be successful. But do what works.
12 AM, 1 AM, 2 AM: I have never exercised at this time. This is zombie time. This time is for sleeping or trying to sleep.
3 AM, 4 AM, 5 AM, 6 AM: A good time for cardiovascular exercise like walking or running.
7 AM, 8 AM, 9 AM, 10 AM: A good late-morning workout. I sometimes delay my weightlifting until late morning, after early cardio.
11 AM, 12 PM, 1 PM, 2 PM: This time of the day is for eating, not lifting. I sometimes even try to take a nap (to build more muscle).
3 PM, 4 PM, 5 PM, 6 PM: This would make a good afternoon workout. I only do this if I am desperate for a lifting fix.
7 PM, 8 PM, 9 PM, 10 PM: The gym is usually crowded in the evening. This can be a serious problem in January.
11 PM: I think this is a good time to be sleeping, not lifting heavy barbells or torturing yourself on a treadmill.
A personal note. When I first began lifting, I thought there was a magic code to being a muscle stud. I since found this was not true.
Hard work. It is discipline. It is an understanding of why you should keep exercising—why it is important. There are so many benefits, it is worth doing. I hope you succeed.
Benefits. There are many benefits to early morning exercise. Perhaps the most important benefit is people are most likely to stick to their exercise plans.
Keep it up. With early morning workouts, you keep exercising and this yields the best results. Keep up the good work. The crazy ones who get up at 3 AM to work out get the best results.