Workout of the Week: Favorite Early Am Workout

Special Tactics officer candidates perform pushups on a Zodiac boat during a selection (U.S. Air Force photo by 1st Lt. Katrina Cheesman).

As written in the Early Morning Workouts Benefits article, workouts first thing in the morning are not for everyone, but if you try it, you may like it.  Here are some classic workouts that you can do with very little equipment before you start your day with work, school, getting the kids to school, or other long list of life’s duties:

“Wake up with crunches” – A quick core workout is a great way to wake up and it truly is a little harder than sleeping. Get out of bed and onto the floor and start with this basic 4-5 minute circuit:

Crunches 10-20 Reverse Crunches 10-20 Left Crunches 10-20 Right Crunches 10-20 Swimmers 30 seconds Right Arm / Left Leg Lifts 10 Reverse Pushups 10-20 Birds 10-20 Arm haulers 10-20 Plank pose 1 minute

Now you are ready to keep rolling with more of a workout – Cardio and / or Resistance Training.

Cardio In the Morning and Even During Lunch

An easy cardio morning is a great way to wake up too – even if only 15-20 minutes.  As you get into better shape, you may want to make for time for 30-45 minutes workouts. This can be a variety from a brisk walk, jog, fast run intervals, bike, elliptical, rower, or swimming.  All of these events are guaranteed to help you burn calories and be more alert and productive the rest of the morning. Studies and anecdotal evidence have shown that an early morning workout is better or just as good as a large caffeine intake.

Full body Workout with TRX or Dumbbells

Repeat 5 times Jumping jacks 10 Knee or wall or regular pushups 10 Squats 10 (sit down / stand up)

Repeat 3 times    Pullups – max or DB rows 10/arm TRX Chest press 10                            TRX bicep curls 10 TRX squat / rows 10 TRX squat /  high rows 10 TRX squat / wide rows 10 TRX atomic pushups 10                        

Step Ups on a step 10 each leg        TRX plank 1 min (arms in straps)        Cooldown cardio 10 minutes of walk or other option

Some Other Morning Classics:

One of the all-time favorites is the PT Pyramid where you focus on pullups, pushups, abs, and dips for a quick pyramid circuit. As you progress, you can “rest” with other cardio exercises like a stationary bike or run on a treadmill for 5-10 minutes.  The best part with this workout is it has a warmup, max out, and a cooldown all rolled into a single workout format.

The Super Set is a moderate way to build up your repetitions with sub maximal efforts. You can repeat the circuit / super set for a maximum number of rounds in a set time limit. This is another way to warmup the muscles first thing in the morning after a short warmup and not be too strenuous on stiff morning joints.


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