Exercising before work sounds like death but there are quite a few benefits to it. Working out helps wake you up, gets you mentally prepared for the day, and jump starts your metabolism. You don’t have to set your alarm for the crack of dawn to work out, though. Even squeezing in quick, under 30 minute exercises can counteract the hours you spend sitting at your desk job.

Try these five easy exercises in the morning before you head off to work.

Stretch It Good
Make it a point to stretch right when you wake up! Stretching in the morning can increase flexibility and improve circulation. Stretch your arms over your head, lean to each side, and bend over to touch your toes for 15 seconds per stretch.

Yoga Time
You don’t have to be an expert yogi to do yoga poses. Start with some beginner positions like cat-cow pose, warrior one or downward dog — hold each pose for a minute or two. As you start getting comfortable, add some more difficult positions, such as the camel pose, extended side angle, pigeon, etc. Figure out the positions that get you focused and make you feel good — then stick with it.

Walk It Out
Take a walk around your neighborhood or take advantage of a nearby park or trail. Don’t worry about the number of miles you walk every morning — rather focus on how even a few hundred steps can make a difference in your day. Feel free to count your steps, though, by purchasing a pedometer or monitoring your “Health” app on the iPhone.

Power of Weights
Using free weights in the morning can be beneficial for anyone. If you want to bulk up, you’ll want to try heavier weights and do less repetitions. If you just want to burn some calories, try lighter weights with more repetitions. Using weights is a fast and easy way to tone up, and you can work on all kinds of upper body muscles in a short amount of time.

Sweet Squat Thrusts
This exercise is a cardio and strength workout in one. It combines jumping, squats, and pushups. Do a basic squat, but instead of raising back up, hop into push-up position, and do a push-up. Then bring your feet back up to your hands in one motion and stand up. Many fitness buffs do 10 or 15 of these alone when they are short on time.

xx, The FabFitFun Team