Why does Sport in the morning help me to feel better throughout the day? More awake, more focussed and happier?


Morning exercise is beneficial for feeling more awake, focused, and happier throughout the day. This positive effect comes from several physiological responses:

  1. Activation of Neurochemical Pathways: Exercising early in the day can trigger the release of neuromodulators like epinephrine, which increase arousal and mental acuity, making you feel more energized and less lethargic 1.

  2. Shifting of Cortisol Spikes: Physical activity causes a healthy increase in cortisol, promoting wakefulness and better sleep when done early in the day. When the cortisol spike is timed early, it supports mood improvements 2.

  3. Mood Elevation: Morning light exposure associated with outdoor exercise can trigger dopamine release—an important neuromodulator for motivation and positive anticipation. This could lead to an overall mood enhancement, further contributing to feelings of happiness 3.

    Morning Exercise Benefits

    Andrew explains how exercising early in the morning, within an hour of waking and no later than 3 hours after waking, can set a neurochemical context for heightened levels of arousal and mental acuity throughout the day. This can lead to feeling more biased for action and less lethargic, providing more energy throughout the day.

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  4. Consistency and Hormone Balance: Consistent morning exercise may help maintain balanced hormone levels, contributing to sustained energy throughout the day 4.

  5. Momentum and Spillover Effects: There is a phenomenon where the positive experience from exercise may create momentum, spilling over the good feelings into other activities throughout the day 5.

Exercising in the morning helps align circadian rhythms, which can have cascading benefits on mental and physical health, including promoting a healthy immune system and optimal timing of biological processes 6.