Training using a resistance band is becoming ever more popular, with many of us using a band to add an extra difficulty level to our bodyweight exercises, to replace using free weights or large scale gym equipment and to allow us the freedom to work out anywhere we like – the park, the beach, even from our home or hotel room.
The great advantage of resistance bands is how portable they are, so you can use them to work out anywhere, at any time of day. But there are particular advantages to incorporating resistance band training into your early morning exercise routine. In this article, we’ve taken a look at the top five benefits you can expect from starting your day with resistance band training.
Build a solid routine
We all have those days where our plans get thrown out the window – a meeting overruns, there’s car trouble on the way to work, a project gets canceled – and suddenly the whole day seems ruined. However, if you make a habit of working out first thing in the morning, then whatever happens with the rest of your day, you’ve got that in the bag.
It’s a great routine to have, giving yourself some space and time before any of the other stresses of life come your way, to concentrate on your physical and mental health, and centre and balance yourself. It also works well in combination with meditation and mindfulness techniques for a full mind and body workout.
Some of the most successful individuals in the world, from business leaders to sports stars, to healthy living gurus, have stated that one of the most important parts of their daily routine is their morning workout, which helps them maintain their focus and energy levels to tackle whatever other tasks they have to undertake on a specific day.
Ease yourself into the day
Jumping straight out of bed and into a punishing bike ride or personal best deadlift is not something we’d recommend. For early morning workout sessions, you want to focus on low impact, moderate-intensity training routines to let your body wake up naturally, get the blood flowing, and stretch out those joints and muscles.
Resistance band training is perfect for this, combining the same challenges you’d get training with weights, but with greater support and smoother movements, meaning you’re not jerking yourself from a rest state directly into a high-intensity program.
Some ideal exercises for an early workout which incorporate resistance bands include: body weight exercises such as banded pull-ups and banded squats; full-body workouts such as resistance band rowing; and stamina building drills like banded jumping jacks, leg lifts and donkey kicks.
Get into a positive headspace
We all know that regular exercise has significant benefits for our mental health. It helps us stay on top of our mental game and is a great way to work through the depressions, anxieties and stresses that the modern world has a habit of throwing our way.
This is true whatever time of day you work out. But getting your workout in early does have some additional benefits. It provides you with the time and headspace to plan whatever’s coming up in your day, and prepare for it.
If you’ve got an early meeting with a difficult client, rather than worrying about it over breakfast, an early gym session can let you mentally prepare for it, reducing any physical tension and oxygenating your blood so you’re firing on all cylinders mentally.
Even if you don’t have any specific stresses in your life, you’ll find that the hormones and endorphins which are released following an early morning workout are a great mood enhancer which will get your day off to the best possible start, and you’ll continue to feel the beneficial effects well into the afternoon and evening.
Burn that fat
The body responds differently to exercise at different times, based on its internal clock (the circadian rhythm). If you can harness this knowledge correctly, you can schedule your exercise regime to take maximum advantage of the most productive time to work out.
If one of your workout goals is to burn fat, then the time of day at which you choose to work out can have a significant effect on how effectively and how quickly you can reach your body fat percentage target.
For fat burning, the evidence suggests that the earlier in the day that you work out, the more your body targets fat as a fuel source, breaking it down and using it for energy. So working out with your resistance bands in the morning can have a much greater impact than leaving it until later in the day.
Protect against injury
Resistance band training is perfect for developing a low impact training regime. This is particularly important for early morning training sessions, as you need to allow your body time to warm up, for your muscles to oxygenate, and for your tendons and ligaments to stretch and flex after your night’s sleep.
Using resistance bands for the first workout of the day lowers the risk of injury from overloading your body early in the morning, or from overexerting or overstretching specific muscle groups.
This means that using bands is also ideal for anyone who is in the recovery phase of a previous injury. You can pick the exact amount of resistance appropriate for your individual needs, and additionally, isolate specific muscle groups if necessary.
Overall, the benefits of using resistance band training as part of your daily morning workout are too good to pass up on. If you’re not already doing so, we’d recommend that you incorporate this versatile and effective training method into your day to day work out program. You’ll soon see the results!