In the 5am Club, Robin Sharma, breaks the first hour of the day into the 20/20/20 formula: Move - Reflect- Grow. The first part of the formula is MOVE. 20 minutes of Intense Exercise. I will get into some of the benefits of why you should move first thing in the morning but I want to provide my answer to the question I am sure some of you will ask "what if I workout for longer then 20 minutes?" You can definitely do this. You will come up with a morning routine that works for you but here is my typical morning:
4am - wake up - from 4:05am-4:20am I write in my journal -REFLECT
4:30am - drive to the gym. As I am driving I listen to a podcast or audio book - GROW
4:45am - Start my workout (I often listen to a podcast or audiobook as I workout as well) - MOVE
5:30am - Meditate via the Calm app (10 minutes)
6:00am - Start work
Some people may have a workout scheduled later in the day, totally fine. You can still get up and get your sweat on for 20 minutes at home and go to your regular workout you have planned later in the day. You will not die from 20 extra minutes of exercise.
Here are some of the benefits of exercising in the morning.
Brain Derived Neurotrophic Factor - when you sweat from a hard workout your brain releases BDNF which charges your brain. BDNF has been shown to repair brain cells damaged from stress and helps speed up neural connection along with promoting Neurogenesis, the growth of new brain cells. Stimulate that brain to set yourself up for the most productive day.
Exercise releases Neurotransmitters - Increased levels of Dopamine which is the neurotransmitter of drive, and Seratonin, the chemical that regulates happiness. Norepinephrine levels will rise, elevating your attention, and regulation of your amyygdala will help calm your response to daily stimuli, stress, hard work projects or children.
Elevates your Metabolism - fueling your fat burning engine of the body. Not only will it stimulate your metabolism while working but for hours post exercise. Muscle is the most metabolically active tissue in the body
Take home point - GET UP AND MOVE!