Okay so you may not be as wide-eyed and excited as I am for early morning workouts. But after this read I am hoping to shift your thoughts about morning workouts to Run Happy ones!
First, some starter tips
- When you can’t squeeze your run in or get to the gym because you know your day will be hectic, plan for an early morning 30-minute at home workout. This way, you can still get your workout in. Remember a quick workout is better than no workoutMake sure that you are taking deep breaths during each rep. The breaths allow for oxygen to get to your muscles so that they can relax and perform
- When putting together your very own circuit, remember move between upper and lower body exercises. The break allows for your muscles to rest
- Each week, challenge yourself by playing with the active and recovery time and/or adding an extra set or additional exercise
- Create an at-home workout environment by using things you have in your house like a gallon of water, sofa, sturdy chair, etc.
For morning workouts, the first step has nothing to do with the workout, but rather with the preparation. Here are some steps you can take to ensure you have a great start to your Run Happy morning workout routine:
- Lay out your clothes for working out AND for work before you go to bed
- The snooze button is real, so to combat this powerful form of technology, set the alarm for 15 minutes earlier then when you want to work out AND place it as far away from your bed as you can. For reinforcement, ask your friend or workout buddy to give you a call when you need to wake up so you can get your workout on
- Know the exercise routine you want to do prior to working out and just as you are going to lay out your clothes the night before, set your morning workout space up the night before as well. This includes resistance bands and weights (get creative and use a gallon of water if you don’t have dumb bells, for example)
- Make sure that you stay hydrated throughout your routine
- Your Run Happy morning routine should not be more than 20-30 minutes. That’s enough time for you to raise your heart rate, get your sweat on and improve strength
Choose a morning workout routine that’s 30 minutes or less:
5 Minute Warm Up Routine: focusing on dynamic stretching. Dynamic stretching will activate the muscles you will be using during your Run Happy AM Workout
- 15-20 Minute Workout: Choose core, full-body and/or circuit training for your routine. This allows for you to achieve more within a short time frame. Remember we don’t you want to miss work, your class or any other aspect of day.
- 5 minute Cool Down/Stretching Routine: Include foam rolling and static stretching during your cool down period. During this time, focus on deep breathing techniques that will help bring your heart rate down and relax you before you hit the shower and really start your day.
Run Happy AM Circuit Workout Suggestion:
- Total body weight and resistance training using a gallon of water (in place of a kettle bell or dumb bell) or two 32 oz. bottles of water. Use another bottle for the drinking water you can use while working out!
- 3-4 rounds of 30 seconds performing each exercise with 30 seconds off for your rest. Try and get as many reps as possible within the 30 second time frame. You can also modify the time frames to meet your fitness needs and level. Thirty seconds on and off is a 1:1 ratio. If you feel like you need more rest you can do 30 seconds on and 60 seconds rest which is a 1:2 ratio. Examples of circuit exercises:
- Squats (with or without gallon of water)
- Tricep dips using couch or sturdy chair
- Bulgarian squat using couch or sturdy chair
- Push ups or modified push ups
- Overhead press with split squats (with or without the two bottles of water)
The benefits of a Run Happy morning workout range from extra energy that can jump start and lead to a great day to knowing that you were able to check off one more thing off your to do list. They say that it takes 21 days to make something a habit. Let’s count tomorrow morning as Day One!
About the Author
Maurelhena Walles is a World and National ranked Masters track and field athlete who just returned from the 2017 World Masters Athletics Championship in Daegu, Korea with a gold medal win in the 60 meters and an American Age Group Record in the 4×200 meter relay. She is a Level II Personal Trainer and NYU Advanced Certified Education Specialist who is defined by her passion and commitment to using health and wellness as a tool to educate and empower. As the Executive Director of Fit 4 Life NYC, she provides the healthiest environment possible to over 2,000 youth and 1,000 adults, yearly, in NYC’s underserved communities.