It’s 6am and no-one stirs in my household – except for me and my dog who is already pacing outside, anticipating her daily outing! Five minutes later and I’m on my bike with dog attached and primed for a 20-minute ride through the nearby canefields.
Getting up so early isn’t easy for someone who not so long ago could have effortlessly slept-in past 8am, or even 10am(!).
We often start every day with good intentions, but come the afternoon we’re too tired and too busy, so our intentions fail. This is one reason walking the dog in the morning is far better for you, your dog, and for a routine, but there are other reasons!
So what motivates me to do it, and why is morning the best time to walk your dog?
6 Reasons why morning is the best time to walk your dog!
One reason is it gives you time to think. A great example is this very article – because I put it together in my mind while out with my dog this morning!
Here are 6 reasons why I find myself out and about with my dog at the break of dawn:
Reason #1: Time to yourself (with your dog)
If I linger in bed its only a matter of time before I’m awoken by my children and their list of demands.
Getting out before they’re up allows me to start the day on my own terms. I get to savour my own space and do something I enjoy before the realities of life catch up on me.
For the rest of my day it’s difficult to find time, or time without pressure.
Reason #2: Morning exercise makes your whole day better
Morning exercise puts me in a good space for the rest of the day.
Having that natural endorphin release so early helps raise my spirits and creates a ‘can do’ attitude about the day ahead.
I also get a buzz to see my dog a lot happier and content about her day, and it takes the guilt off me that she’s not having to sit waiting all day to have some fun.
Reason #3: It’s cooler in the morning
It’s a whole lot cooler at this time of the day, especially in the summer months.
I live in the tropics and by 9am the sun is up and the heat can be overwhelming.
Both the dog and I feel more refreshed and energised heading out for a ride in the early morning. Leave it any later and we’re both slowed down considerably thanks to the heat, which isn’t pleasant for either of us.
Yes, I sweat! And I don’t want my dog’s paws on a hot pavement.
Reason #4: The dawn is magical
Experiencing the dawn break is energising in itself. I’m sure it has magical healing powers!
A sunrise can easily lift your spirits. The sky glows a salmon pink and the early morning rays gradually light up the world around you. Dew often sits on the grass and the scent of flowering plants seems stronger at this time of day.
It’s as if the aromas of everyday life haven’t completely overpowered everything just yet!
Reason #5: It starts the day with a sense of accomplishment
By riding my bike with the dog I feel like I’ve already accomplished something in the day. It’s one less thing I have to squeeze in on my schedule of ‘things to do today’ list.
I find that so rewarding.
I read a study once on dieting, where those who “fail” with unhealthy food in the morning have a tendency to write off the day and continue eating unhealthily until the next day.
Walking your dog in the morning is the opposite – it sets you up for success!
Reason #6: Less traffic, less people!
There’s far less traffic in the morning, which is great if you live in inner-city Sydney or Melbourne. That means it’s safer to be out with your dog on city streets, and also a lot calmer. Zen!
Because I cycle with my dog it’s especially beneficial for me as it’s so much safer. Not competing for space on the roads makes for a much more peaceful ride.
For me it’s more than just being out with my dog – it’s a quick pick-me-up that helps me tackle my day head-on with a far better attitude.
Related: Cycling with my dog.
What time of the day to you exercise your dog? Does it help to raise your spirits?