Waking up early to squeeze in some morning exercise is hard enough as it is, never mind mustering up the energy and willpower to make it through an hour long kickboxing class or treadmill run. If you're looking to work out in the morning hours, doing some type of easy morning exercise is key to sticking to your plan. Consider doing some of the following kinds of exercise after your morning alarm goes off.
1. Mat Based Pilates
Pilates is a great early morning exercise because it doesn't require an extreme amount of cardiovascular endurance. While you have to be focused when doing pilates, it doesn't require the same amount of stamina as, say, a step aerobics class. Since you'll be laying down on a mat for most of a pilates session, it's to mentally prepare for pilates after you get out of bed. There are an abundance of Pilates workout DVDs available, making your morning exercise even easier since you don't have to leave home.
Like Pilates, yoga is also a great form of morning exercise since sessions typically begin with simple and relaxing moves before progressing into those that are more difficult. Yoga allows your body to wake up. With the mind and body connection, yoga will get you both mentally and physically prepared to take on the day. Even more, the stretching component will simply feel good first thing in the morning. You can do a video at home or take a morning class at your local gym or yoga studio.
Taking a brisk morning walk does more than just give you a good physical workout. Getting outside for some fresh air first thing in the morning can do wonders for your mood and state of mind as well. All you have to do is throw on some clothes and decent walking shoes and take a stroll wherever you wish (your own neighborhood, a park, the local high school track, etc.). Walking generally puts your mind at ease, making it easier to actually get up and take them on a regular basis. It's the type of exercise that doesn't feel like exercise--and the kind that you might actually look forward to doing on a daily basis. You can't beat that.
Swimming gentle laps at your local health club or YMCA makes for easy morning exercise because you can set your own pace. Unlike more intense forms of cardio (aerobic classes, running on treadmill), you can adjust your pace as you swim. If you're looking for an easy morning workout, swimming slow laps in the pool can be a relaxing way to start the day. You'll still reap the physical benefits without feeling tired or worn out in the process.
The more you workout in the morning, the easier it'll become to stick with your routine. You can keep the intensity low or ramp it up as you become more accustomed to a.m. exercise.