1. You can accomplish absolutely nothing else the rest of the day and still feel accomplished. Because you already ran, like, three miles. Isn’t that enough?!
2. You might actually want (!) to eat healthy stuff afterward. You started the day on such a good foot that the salad bar at the cafeteria might start to seem appealing (especially if it’s fresh mozzarella day).
3. You’ll eventually get a better workout than you would later in the day. Technically, your body is wired to perform at its peak in mid-afternoon. But things like, oh, work can get in the way of workouts at that time. When you make exercise a regular part of your a.m. routine, though you’ll be less likely to skip it for other obligations. (Your friend will pretty much never move her birthday party to 7 a.m.) And once you get used to moving first thing in the morning, studies suggest that the body adjusts and might even surpass its afternoon performance peak.
4. You’ll feel less stressed when you get to work. And feel better about working late. People who exercise regularly report feeling more empowered and all around better about their work-life balance. Science says!
5. Bragging rights. You can say things like, “I saw the funniest thing at the gym this morning!” Then watch jaws drop.
6. Caffeine can fuel your workouts, and you drink coffee in the morning anyway. Research suggests that consuming caffeine before a workout can boost speed, endurance, and overall workout quality. Drinking a cup of coffee before exercising can help you burn more calories when your workout is done. Of course, drinking too much could give you the wrong kind of runs (and won’t improve your performance), so don’t overdo it.
7. You’ll stoke your appetite for breakfast. Studies show that eating breakfast inspires people to make better choices all day. Take that, breakfast-haters.
8. You’ll have nothing to dread the rest of the day. Things are only getting better. And less sweaty!
9. You’ll have a better hair day. It’s a win-win situation: If you wash your hair after your workout, it will be clean and shiny. If you leave your braid in, you’ve got a cool updo going on.
10. You could burn more fat. While there’s lots of conflicting research on the pros and cons of exercising on an empty stomach, a recent study suggests that you can burn up to 20 percent more body fat by exercising in the morning before your first meal. Just don’t wait until lunchtime to refuel. Getting a meal in early before you sit down at your desk to start your day will jump-start your metabolism and keep your appetite under wraps to reduce your chance of overeating later on, says registered dietitian Cristina Rivera, a board certified sports nutritionist.
11. You’ll start your day in an awesome mood. Even if you wake up on the wrong side of the bed, a morning workout will boost your endorphins for extra smiles the rest of the day.
12. You’ll probably have more energy during your workout. Really. Think about it. Which is more difficult: sleeping or spending an entire day in your shoes? Thought so. “With enough sleep you will have more energy at the beginning of the day than the end to put into your workout,” says certified fitness trainer Stacy Berman, whose signature Stacy’s Bootcamp classes begin at 5:30 a.m.
13. Your skin will naturally glow. A post-workout flush = “Look ma, no makeup!”
14. You’ll give your metabolism a big boost! You burn more calories throughout the day when you do a morning workout than you would if you did an evening workout at a similar intensity, Berman says.
15. Your social life will peak. Ever gather up your college crew at the crack of dawn? No, no, you haven’t. So you won’t be missing anything when you take your morning run. Drinks later?