It is often quoted that successful people wake up early. Search the Internet and you will find a dozen self-help, productivity and entrepreneurship articles and more to prove this theory.
Well, here at FaMA - Fitness and Martial Arts, there is no greater reason for our waking up early than the mere fact that it makes us feel pretty good. Getting up before the rest of the world does, gives one a rare yet beautiful opportunity to experience life without the usual “noise” of our modern-day living. When you channel your first waking hours towards doing the things you love - be it meditation, journaling, exercise, or something else - it is easier to get them done mindfully and intentionally because you have less interruptions and demands in your way.
With that being said, we know that the idea of rising before dawn can be a laughable or dreadful thought. Before you condemn the idea altogether, let us say that we believe it is possible to change a habit if you practice it consistently enough. Here are a few tried and tested tips to help you become someone who wakes up early.
1. Prepare yourself the day before - both physically and mentally.
Set your intentions to wake up early the next day by laying out your clothes and packing your bag for the day’s activities, the night before.
Also, if you know you will be getting up early the next day, ensure that you partake in evening activities that help, not hinder you. For instance, eating a late dinner or staying out with your friends past a certain time does not make waking up early easier, especially if you are not used to this habit yet.
2. Set small goals.
If you are someone who usually gets up at 8:30 am, aiming for a new 6:00 am habit is adventurous but quite likely unrealistic in the long run.
Instead, aim to wake up 15-30 minutes earlier, and make progressive increases as you allow your body to ease into your new habit. Likewise, begin to set earlier bedtimes as you go along, re-adjusting your body clock gradually.
This is very much like setting fitness goals. You cannot expect to drop two dress sizes in a week, lift barbells double your body weight in a month, or become a Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Black Belt in a year. Instead of striving for unrealistic goals that burn you out and leave you unhappy and exhausted after a short period, aim to achieve small little wins and enjoy the process of being 1% better every day.
3. Eliminate gadget use before bedtime.
Did you know that the use of electronic gadgets before bedtime can affect the quality of your sleep? Blue light emission from screens reduce melatonin (a hormone that regulates your natural sleep cycle), and tech-activity can cause your mind to stay alert.
It is not just about the duration of your sleep that helps you rest, but also it's quality. It is difficult enough to create a new habit of waking up early, and you want to remove as many obstacles as possible in this process. As such, putting away your gadgets at least 30 - 60 minutes before bedtime is an effective way to train your mind and body to prepare for rest.
Social media updates, text messages, emails, and the next episode on Netflix will always be there for you the next day. They can wait. Rest when it is time to rest.
4. Decide on your early morning routine.
If you wake up early with no fixed agenda on what to do, chances are, you might go back to bed!
Create an intentional agenda for your new early morning routine. It could start off with a cold shower, a cup of strong coffee, and 30 minutes of journaling and personal goal-setting. Then, why not add gym time to the list?
After all, how often have you made the excuse to skip a lunchtime or evening workout because of work, social, or family demands? By getting your workout down first thing in the morning, you are able to get it out of the way with very little to hold you back (except oversleeping, of course!).
Not only does a morning workout give you a sweet endorphin boost for you to face the day with optimism and confidence… It also gives you an excuse to have a hearty breakfast. :)
5. Have an accountability buddy.
Why is it easier to work out with friends? They keep you accountable. You are less likely to skip a workout - or skip anything, for that matter - when you have a friend committing to do it together with you.
Have a workout buddy at the gym? Why not commit to attending a morning workout session together?
We advocate the practice of sleeping and rising early because it is an opportunity for you to not only instill self-control and self-discipline, but also create personal space for rest, reflection, and rejuvenation. Whether or not you eventually choose to become an early riser, our hope is that you will be able to find that space for yourself in the midst of a hectic lifestyle in today’s fast-paced society.
FaMA - Fitness and Martial Arts Established in 2016, FaMA is a world-class martial arts training facility located in the heart of the Central Business District in Singapore. Walking distance from Clarke Quay and Fort Canning MRT stations, FaMA’s main goal is to help people improve their lives through martial arts regardless of age or athletic capability. Our Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu (BJJ), Muay Thai, Fitness and Kids Martial Arts programs are led by experts in their respective fields. Whether it is weight loss, a fun workout, camaraderie, competition training, or just to break a sweat, FaMA has something for everyone.