The one thing I get asked most after questions about my dog Gatsby is how I manage to fit everything in. How do I juggle a really demanding job in the City and still find time to eat nutritious meals and train. One thing that really works for me is training/working out in a morning and so I thought I'd share a few of my tips on making a morning session happen.
Prepare your kit the night before
This for me is crucial. I get every item ready and in a pile in a separate room, often downstairs. By everything I mean underwear, gloves and I even put my deodorant on the top. In a morning I tend to work on autopilot to get out the door in less than ten minutes plus you'll only forget something like a hair bobble once before it makes it to the top of the pile.
Plan your session
I've never been one of those people who can create an incredible gym workout by wandering about between the machines I have to know what I'm doing. I plan my sessions at the start of the week so that I know what I'm doing each day and I don't waste time in a morning scrolling through screenshots I've captured of workouts to try. I also find knowing what I have to do that day, whether it's leg day or a 5k run helps me to get out of bed.
Make it fun
Getting up in a morning is still not easy. I've been training this way for over five years now and I still find it tough at times. You have to make it worth waking up for. Recently I've been running in some new kit from Bellum Active and I'm really impressed with it. I love their super soft run clothing, especially the Endurance QSkin which has long sleeves which is perfect for icy morning runs. I love that some kit actuallymakes me excited to put it on to train in. Plus, with it being so dark Gatsby and I have got new lights. I got a new head torch which was exciting to wear every day for at least two weeks (I am such a geek) and Gatsby has a cool little light from Nite Ize which he wears on his collar. He gets really excited when he wears that too and runs off exploring more.
Do your favourite things
If you love going to a certain spin class or have a particular favourite running route then do those on a morning. Let's face it if you hate your circuit class you are not going to make it a priority to get out of bed to go. One of my favourite places to train in London is 1Rebel. It is an insane gym! If you haven't been then please pop it on your list of things to do early this year. The classes and facilities there are like nowhere you'll have been before and the atmosphere is SO motivating. It's something that others have tried to replicate but I've not found anyone who can yet. If I've got a spot in a Rumble class I never miss a session. Even when I really don't feel like going the fact that I have booked a place and paid my money gives me that extra incentive to get out of bed.
Find your motivation
Focus on why you are getting up. Are you doing it to train to be fitter and stronger? Are you trying to lose weight? Are you working towards a half marathon or a 10k? If so think about that when you've hit snooze for the second time. Think about how you want to feel when you cross that finish line of your race and you know you've just hit a personal best. Personally I train because it makes me feel good. On the mornings where I have been for a 30-40 minute run I am noticeably better in the office. I sit down and I can get on with my work much more productively without being distracted.
Don't swap training sessions for sleep
Sleep is a really important process for our bodies not just recharge but studies have shown it also helps us to lose weight. Therefore, if you're planning an early training session you need to go to bed earlier. It might sound pretty obvious but I promise that one of the first things your mind will think in the morning when the alarm goes off is "I need more sleep" If you know you've had 7/8 hours you'll have one less excuse. Hop into bed early, light a candle (my absolute favourite is White Jasmine and Mint by Jo Malone) put down your phone and pick up a book to help clear your head before bed.
Fuel your training
I don't eat before I train. At the moment I'm not running any really big mileage and I prefer not to eat before exercise because unless I've had at least two hours to digest my food I feel sick. I remember marathon training and getting up early to eat before my sessions and then going back to sleep, it's not ideal to be doing before a day at work. If I know I've got a tough morning session planned then I tend to have a high carb dinner the night before which works really well for a very productive training session. Try switching things up and training without eating to save time in a morning or grab just a coffee instead if that works for you but as with anything else make sure you have a plan for breakfast as you don't want to head off to work without it.
Let me know if you have any tips or suggestions of things that work for you. Anything that makes the mornings easier is very welcome.