I am sure you have heard from dieticians that to lose weight, you have to burn more calories than what you consume. However, losing weight sometimes feels impossible even when you eat less and exercise more. But, did you know that following some morning routine for weight loss can help?
Sometimes, shedding a few pounds doesn’t need an enormous or total overhaul of diet and lifestyle; but rather making a few changes to your morning routine can help you lose weight and keep it off.
In this article, we bring you a list of morning habits that you need to adjust to, to help you lose weight and keep it off.
To begin with, what is a routine?
A routine is simply the usual series of activities that one does at a particular time. It can also be termed as the practice of regularly doing things in a specific order.
Why morning when it comes to weight loss?
Nutritionists have always pointed out that eating earlier in the day can be more favorable for shedding pounds while eating later can interfere with weight loss. According to a study published in the journal Obesity, early time feeding curbs appetite and promote fat burning.
Also, scientific studies point out that people who exercise in the morning burn more fat than people who do the same workout later in the day. A morning workout boosts the metabolism of sugar and fat and may aid weight control while exercising at night uses less energy and oxygen.
What things should I do first thing in the morning to lose weight (morning routine for weight loss)?
Some habits can help to set up a good foundation for weight loss by making the most of your mornings. The habits will boost your efforts in eating right and getting plenty of exercises.
We know you might not be a morning person, but if you want to lose weight, start developing these habits for your morning routine. They include;
Routinely Check Your Weight
This is a very strong motivational tool. Have a daily weigh-in or at least every other day. When you keep your numbers on a close watch, you will keep in line with your weight loss efforts. This is because every time you look at the scale and things are not right, you know you have to get back to the drawing board.
Enjoy Some Sunshine
Morning sunshine has weight loss benefits. I know you are asking how! Apart from Vitamin D, morning sunlight stimulates hormones, made up of amino acids, the building blocks of protein. This will help boost your metabolism and initiate the fat-burning process.
Get in an Early Workout
Like I explained above scientists believe that exercising in the morning burns fatter than doing the same workout later in the day. Therefore, going for an early morning jog, weight training or 20 minutes of yoga will benefit your weight loss efforts. Even when the day does not go as planned provided you got some morning exercise; you will be fine.
Exercise boosts metabolism and keeps blood sugar at normal levels. The morning exercise will set the mood for the day and you are less likely to snack on unhealthy meals after exercise.
Begin the day with water
There is a common narrative that water is life. This basically means that proper hydration will keep your body healthy. Water aids the digestion and absorption of nutrients by the body.
When you drink water before meals, you will feel half full, reduce hunger, and likely eat less on the next meal. Eating fewer calories will promote weight loss. Water also removes unhealthy toxins from the body. Therefore, start your day with a glass of water or two.
Eat a Protein-Rich Breakfast
Having a protein breakfast will jump-start your metabolism and this will help your weight loss efforts. Since protein takes longer to digest, your appetite will reduce, and craving unhealthy snacks will also reduce. Always aim for 20+ grams of protein at your first meal of the day. This is great for the recommended daily protein intake.
Enjoy That Cup of Coffee
Coffee has caffeine to give your morning routine a fat-burning boost. According to a study published June 2019 in the journal Scientific Reports, it was established that drinking a cup of coffee can stimulate “brown fat,” also known as brown adipose tissue or BAT, which plays a role in helping the body burn calories more quickly.
The morning boost of caffeine comes with the added advantage of better focus during your morning workouts.
Pack the Day’s Snacks
When you pack the day’s snacks, you avoid afternoon unhealthy snacks. All you need to do is to pack enough snacks to take you through the day. The healthy snacks will keep you on track.
Get a mindful mood
Mindfulness meditation is a potential weight-loss tool. It is basically a mental training practice. With meditation, one can slow down racing thoughts, put aside negativity, and calm both the mind and body. This stabilizes emotions and makes you less likely to give into stress-based eating.
What am I doing wrong? / Things I do every morning that may be affecting my weight loss journey
There are many things that we knowingly or unknowingly do in the morning that affect our weight loss efforts. let’s look at some of these below.
What is normal is having 7-8 hours of sleep every day. More than this is detrimental to your weight loss goals. Oversleeping increases the BMI. As the body expects energy from feeding, you are sleeping instead. This forces the body to produce more fat cells for sustenance. Oversleeping also affects the body’s metabolism. Therefore sleep normally and keep mealtimes consistent.
You read the news in the morning
I know reading the news sounds right to every morning, but can be detrimental to your weight loss efforts. Every morning, the body cells work quickly to normalize the speed. However, reading news comes with the stress that may turn your stem cells into fat cells and consequently gain body fat. Avoid the stress by listening to some relaxing music. The less stressed you are in the morning; the less effort you will need to lose weight.
You skip breakfast
It is mythical that skipping breakfast can help weight loss. In fact, most dieticians say that breakfast is the most important meal of the day, and you, therefore, should not miss it. Like we said above, avoid sugary and foods with a lot of preservatives. Instead, go for a protein-rich breakfast. In case you don’t know what to eat for breakfast, see our articles about healthy breakfast below
Skipping the morning exercise
Most people skip morning exercises because they wake up tired or sleepy. However, incorporating exercise into your morning routine for weight loss has several benefits as we discussed above. These among others include; increasing metabolism, decreasing appetite, and more
Do you lose more weight on an empty stomach?
It is better to work out first thing in the morning before eating breakfast. This is known as fasted cardio. On an empty stomach, the body burns stored fat and carbohydrates for energy instead of the food you’ve just eaten, and this leads to higher fat loss.
A 2016 study that involved 12 men showed that those who didn’t eat breakfast before exercising burned more fat and reduced their caloric intake over 24 hours.
However, this should not be over-relied. Using fat as energy doesn’t necessarily reduce the overall body fat % or burn more calories.
Also fasted cardio could lead to the body using protein as fuel. This leaves the body with little or no protein; as we all know protein builds and repairs muscles after exercise.
Sometimes weight loss may not require strange methods or a complete overhaul of your current diet and lifestyle. Making a few changes to your morning routine for weight loss can help see results. These include getting some sunshine, exercising, getting enough sleep, high protein breakfast, mindfulness, and more. These habits not only help you lose weight but also boost your health and improve your life.