If you’re looking to better your health, one of the best things you can do is get moving in the morning. A new study published by the European Journal of Preventive Cardiology shows that morning physical activity is linked with the lowest risk of heart disease and stroke. Regardless of how much daily activity was present, the findings were always consistent.
One of the largest studies of its kind
These findings are groundbreaking because they provide the first evidence from a large population-based database to show how morning physical activity can protect against cardiovascular diseases. The study included 86,657 adults aged 42 years old and up who were free of heart problems at baseline. For seven consecutive days, the participants wore an activity tracker on their wrists. According to the data, those who were most active in the morning (between 8 am and 11 am) had 11% and 16% lower risks of developing coronary artery disease, respectively, compared to the reference group.
Morning workouts provide the biggest benefit for women
After analyzing the results based solely on sex, they found that the results were more significant in women than men. Women had a 22% and 24% lower risk of incident cardiovascular diseases. In addition, women who exercised the most in the late morning had a 35% lower risk of incident stroke.
Still more research needed
“This was an observational study and therefore we cannot explain why the associations were more marked in women,” says study author Gali Albalak of Leiden University Medical Center in the study media release. “Our findings add to the evidence on the health benefits of being physically active by suggesting that morning activity, and especially late morning, may be the most advantageous. It is too early for formal advice to prioritize morning exercise as this is quite a new field of research.”
So, what are the benefits of morning workouts?
Working out in the morning has many advantages and can be a great way to jump-start your day. With the right motivation, you can have the energy and focus that comes with starting your day off on the right foot. Let’s explore why morning workouts can be so beneficial.
A healthy mindset
Starting your day with a workout sets up a healthy mindset for the rest of your day. Exercise releases endorphins, which act as natural mood boosters and can cause you to feel more energized throughout the day. Having this positive mindset can help you stay focused and productive throughout your workday or school schedule. Additionally, having a workout routine helps create structure in your life and gives you something to look forward to each morning.
Improved mental health
Finally, working out regularly can have a positive impact on your mental health by reducing anxiety and depression symptoms as well as improving overall mood stability. In fact, research shows that people who exercise regularly are happier than those who don’t—and doing so first thing in the morning might just be one of the most effective ways to get these mental health benefits fast! Additionally, by getting into a routine with regular morning workouts, you might just find yourself feeling more motivated and inspired throughout the rest of your day.
Improves sleep quality
Exercising in the morning can also help improve sleep quality at night. Working out increases body temperature, and when it cools down again later in the evening it signals to our bodies that it is time for bed. This leads to better sleep patterns and more restful nights of sleep overall. Plus, regular exercise strengthens our bodies’ circadian rhythm which helps us wake up easier in the mornings without feeling groggy or sluggish all day long.
More time for other activities
One of the biggest benefits of working out in the morning is that it frees up time during the rest of your day for other activities such as hobbies, errands, or spending time with family and friends. By getting up early to get in a few sets at home (or even take an online class) before work or school begins, you’re giving yourself extra time during evenings or weekends to do fun activities that bring joy into your life!
One of the biggest benefits of working out in the morning is that it will give you more energy throughout the day. When your body moves, blood flow increases and oxygen levels rise, which boosts energy production and makes it easier for your body to perform everyday tasks.
If you’re trying to get more done during the day, an early-morning workout may be just what you need. Working out will not only give you more energy throughout the day, but it also helps to increase productivity by reducing stress and anxiety levels—both of which can lead to increased productivity and focus later on in the day.
So, the next time you’re tempted to hit snooze and roll back over for another hour of sleep, remember that morning physical activity may be the key to a healthier heart. Of course, we need more data before we can say for certain that morning workouts are the key to reducing our risk of these deadly diseases. However, there are countless reasons why working out first thing in the morning can be beneficial—from improved energy levels throughout your day to better sleep quality at night and improved mental health overall! Whether you’re just starting out or already have an established fitness routine under your belt, adding some early-morning workouts into your schedule could be just what you need to take it up another notch—so why not give them a try? Who knows? You might just discover that transforming into an early riser was worth every minute!