Wednesday, June 18, 2008

My (Early Morning) Motivation

I've had more than a few people comment on my ability to consistently wake up early in the morning (5:00am) before having to head into the office to be sure to get my kettlebell workout in for the day. I do have a few personal motivations that keep me going...

(1) I am very fortunate that I enjoy working out. I know people who work out, but do it because the "know they have to", not because they like it. I like the way I feel while I am working out. I like the way I feel after I work out. If I don't work out for any prolong period, I don't feel like myself.

(2) I enjoy working with kettlebells. I have found them to be a workout tool that satisfies me, and in the limited amount of time that I have, they provide me with an optimal workout, improving my strength, endurance, flexibility and body composition.

(3) Kettlebell workouts can be short and even when they are, they are still effective. I work long hours in a corporate job behind a desk with a long commute (about an hour each way, sometimes a little shorter, more times longer depending on traffic). I also have a wife and two-year old son who I don't see enough. When I get home in the evenings, there's no way I'm going to ignore them and lock myself away to workout. Therefore, the morning's allow me to take care of myself so that I can take care of my loved ones in the evening's.

That's about it. I would suggest to anyone who is thinking about getting up early to train to start easy. Start off getting up about a 1/2 hour earlier each day. But only workout every other day. Let your body get used to waking up and moving around. On the day you don't workout, do something easy like stretch or joint mobility work or meditation. The point is to condition yourself to get out of bed earlier than you are used to. And at the same time, make sure you go to sleep at night early enough so that you're not exhausted in the morning. I set my alarm for 5:00am each morning (weekends not included) and try to at least be getting ready to go to sleep by 10:00pm at night. Last night I got to sleep closer to 11:00pm, but I was still able to get up this morning to get my session in.

Another trick that helped me - I started this in the Fall of last year. Just as I was getting used to waking up at 5:30am we put the clocks back for Standard Time. Then all of a sudden I could actually wake up at 5:00am and my body thought (at least for a while) that I was actually getting a 1/2 hour MORE sleep than before. By the time my body caught up with what was happening I was in the 5:00am groove.

OK, enough about waking up early. I was able to wake up early today and here's my workout...

Long Cycle Bottom Up Clean and Press: 8kg - 3 min (12L/12R)

Snatch: 12kg - 3 min (24L/24R)

Jerk: 12kg - 3 min (24L/24R)

I went back to the 8kg today for the Long Cycle Bottom Up Clean and Press to build up my coordination just as I did with the Bottom Up Clean. A few sessions like this and if all works the same, I should have no problem performing same with the 12kg. That's it for today. Jerk 'em up y'all!


hunashaman said...

Good post Howie with some very valuable tips clearly learnt through experience. My problem is not that I don't like the training, it's the getting up part that is the issue ;-)

Howie Brewer said...

Now Johan, I said I was motivated. I never said I liked it. I was NEVER EVER a morning person and I still don't consider myself one.