Morning exercise

January 7, 2009

For 2 days in a row now I’ve managed to get in morning exercise.

I don’t think it makes much difference to your metabolism whether you exercise in the morning or later in the day – but I think it makes a big difference in how likely you are to do it.

As the day goes on, the things we want to get done, the time left in the day, and various distractions and unplanned events all creep up, knocking down the likelihood to get that planned workout in.  Add that to the fact that most of us are tired and that exercise is not our favorite activity of all time, and the good intentions can easily get run off the road.  I know everything that is between me and a planned workout is a potential reason not to get it done.

If I plan to work out on a weekend day I will often get dressed directly into my workout gear to help nudge me in the right direction.  This was no big deal in the US, where people often wear exercise clothes out in public (and brands like Juicy make a mint marketing this look), but it’s pretty shocking in France (probably more so on a body that doesn’t look like it actually makes it to workout very often!).

I’ve been back exercising regularly for coming on 3 weeks now.  Half that time was in the US on vacation, where it was easy – getting to the gym could be my biggest objective of the day.  Half the time was back home in Paris but mostly when I was still on vacation.  This workweek has begun with me having several work-from-home days, which is flexible for gym time, but not 100% so.

One of my goals is to work out at least 3x a week, and on most days when I’m in Paris (I’ll be traveling quite a bit in my new job).  So these days at home need to include the gym.  Monday I put it off and put it off and then was almost going to not do it.  I did, but also realized I spent more time worrying about it than necessary, and earlier sessions would really help that.  Yesterday was my first foray into the morning workout in a long time.  Today was a repeat, although more successful in that it was a tad bit earlier, and it was unplanned.

It’s been bitter cold in Paris (unusual for us) and yesterday my DH dropped me off at the gym on his way to work.  It’s about an 8 minute walk from my house to the gym, and in 20 degree weather I was happy to avoid one direction of that walk.  Well, this morning my DH asked me if I was going to get up & get ready for the gym (when I’d kind of thought I’d sleep in a bit) but in the end I did get up and was glad I did.  Especially when he called me later to ask if I wanted to go shopping and to a movie at the end of the day.  If I hadn’t already worked out I’d be trying to figure out how to do it earlier or more likely deciding to blow it off…

I don’t know how often morning workouts will really work for me.  When I work from home they should be okay, but I’m expecting to be told I’ll need to spend more of my non-travel days working from the French offices (phooey) which could still technically allow for morning workouts but they’d be mighty early…  In any event, I know they do help my stress levels quite a bit.

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