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Making mornings great!

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If you’re finding your day doesn’t allow time to get your sweat on, early mornings are your way to go.  But the alarm goes off, you groan and hit snooze, about eight times.  You had all the intentions to get up and work out this morning, but now sleep seems so much more important. Here’s the thing: With some preparation, you can become an early riser and enjoy it!

Sleep is the first step to health and bushy-tailed energy. Hit the hay early!  What is keeping you up so late? Turn off the computer and your TV by a set time each night.  If your favorite show isn’t on until 9 p.m., record it and watch it the following day at an earlier time. Develop an evening ritual that will help you unwind, relax and drift off to sleep earlier. If the kids have you up late, remember, you are the most influential example your kids have. Teach them early on the importance of bedtime rituals and quality sleep. Eight hours, even seven hours, will give you that morning energy you need. 

Create a step-by-step plan. Ok, so now you’re out of bed, messy haired and a little disoriented. Know what you are going to wear, have your iPhone charged and ready to play your “up and at em’” music.  A cup of coffee or tea might be all you need to get you out the door. If you find you get hungry while you are working out, have something simple to eat before you go. A piece of fruit or half an English muffin will hit the spot.  Enjoy your “real” breakfast as your post workout meal. 

Have your workouts ready. Thirty to 40 minutes, two to three times a week, is all you need to get your new morning ritual going. Start with the idea of just getting into the early groove. Keep it simple and go with a plan. I’ll include a workout at the end of this article, but keep in mind that you can find loads of workouts online. Check out a local blog, like mamasandmimis.com, for workouts, recipes and other simple health and fitness ideas that will fit into any busy schedule.

Last, but not least, reward yourself for your efforts. Find rewards that make you feel good about yourself. A manicure, new shoes, eye lash extensions, the list goes on and on! As your morning workouts become a habit, you will find that the true reward for your efforts are: your increased energy, your healthy glow and the boost to your self-confidence!

Early morning at home workout:

Take 5 minutes to warm up your whole body with marching, step ups or a cardio machine.
Do this work out with your own body weight or add dumb bells, resistance bands or a medicine ball.  Complete 15 repetitions of each exercise. Go through the list two to three times. 

Squat press
Reverse lunge
Bicep curls
Push ups
Slow mountain climbers
Tricep dips
Finish off your workout with two sets of some type of abdominal work.

Chani Overstreet is an NASM Certified Personal Trainer and owner of Strada Fitness & Wellness Center with her husband, Luke.  Strada is a state-of-the-art fitness studio located at 3041 Churchill Drive, Suite 100, in Flower Mound, across from Lifetime Fitness.  Call 972.330.4300 or visit www.StradaFitness.com for more information.

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