Finding time to stay in good shape isn’t easy, but a little forethought, and maybe a morning workout, can make fitness achievable for all.

A great workout immediately boosts your energy and your mood, and also helps to set a healthy tone for how you approach your day. Being physically active and avoiding too much sitting is vital to optimal health and wellbeing.

While the best time to exercise will largely depend on your lifestyle, most people prefer a morning workout. You won’t have to worry about making time later in the day or having to cancel if something else comes up.

If you aren’t usually an early-bird, creating your morning workout habits now is key to beating the winter blues!

Whether you’re going to the gym, prepping for an outdoor run or simply headed to the next room for a workout, these tips should help you stay active all year round.

1. Stop hitting snooze
When it’s cold and dark in the morning, it can be easy to keep hitting the snooze button. Instead, put your alarm clock at the other end of your bedroom, turn on the light switch (or let in some natural light) and do a few quick stretches.

2. Create a morning playlist
Shake off sluggishness and get motivated for the day ahead with energising songs. Upbeat music may even make you push yourself harder when exercising.

3. Simplify your morning routine
Make it easier to get out the door each morning by preparing what you can the night before. Pack everything you need for your workout in a bag and organise your meals. When the winter chill sets in, just add cosy outerwear and consider warming yourself up afterwards with a hot tea or hearty porridge.

4. Don’t get distracted by technology
Try putting your phone on flight mode before you go to sleep and don’t take it off until after your workout.

5. Turn your commute into a workout.
Ride a bike, or leave home earlier to fit in a walk. If you drive, try parking your car 15 minutes from where you need to be and walk the rest of the way.

6. Recruit a buddy
No matter what exercise you choose, organising to meet someone for your workout will keep you accountable and encourage you to make it there.

And remember – at least one third of all cancers can be prevented by simple lifestyle changes, including maintaining a healthy weight, being active, eating well, limiting alcohol, quitting smoking and staying SunSmart.

For good health, try to do 150–300 minutes of moderate intensity exercise or 75-150 minutes of vigorous physical activity every week.

Good exercise habits take time to develop. Be patient, be persistent, and get set to feel the benefits.

More information about Cancer Council Queensland and healthy living is available at cancerqld.org.au.

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