Okay, decision making time: What outfit should I wear? Should I have iced or hot coffee? Is it smarter to take the subway or drive to work?
And this is just in the first ten minutes of your day. During one day, the average person makes 35,000 conscious decisions.
Needless to say, it can become overwhelming when we don’t know what we want.
Decision making is a fascinating paradox. As human beings, we are inherently drawn to choice. But on the flip side, our psyche can’t handle it.
The Science Behind Decision Making
So, how do we improve our ability to make decisions? According to a new study published in the British Journal of Sports Medicine, the secret to success lies in morning exercise.
As it turns out, working out in the morning is scientifically proven to enhance memory and cognitive function in older adults.
The study included 65 males and females ranging from 55 to 80 years of age. During an eight hour day of prolonged sitting, researchers evaluated the cognitive impact of morning exercise on a treadmill with and without three minute walking breaks.
They found that a morning session of moderate-intensity aerobic exercise along with walking breaks every 30 minutes provided significant health benefits in terms of short-term working memory and executive function.
Contrarily, long periods of uninterrupted sitting resulted in lower working memory and executive function test scores.
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Morning Exercise Benefits Are Plentiful
Most of us are sitting too much. And this is not only negatively affecting our physical health, but our mental health as well. The longer we sit, the less productive we are.
To maintain optimal cognitive performance throughout the day, Michael Wheeler (lead author of the study) explains the importance of moderate-intensity morning exercise and taking walking breaks.
To avoid burnout, you need to give your brain a break so it can return refreshed and recharged.
“This study highlights how relatively simple changes to your daily routine could have a significant benefit to your cognitive health,” Wheeler says. “It also reveals that one day we may be able to do specific types of exercise to enhance specific cognitive skills such as memory or learning.”
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Don’t Underestimate the Power of Your Morning Exercise Routine When It Comes to Decision Making and Overall Health and Wellness
How you wake up sets the tone for your day. If you want to enjoy greater peace of mind and better decision making, incorporate morning exercise into your daily routine. Morning exercise benefits really are vast and extensive and science is constantly proving it.
Even if it means waking up a half hour earlier, it’s important to make your health a priority.
In the wise words of Benjamin Franklin, “Early to bed and early to rise makes a man healthy, wealthy, and wise.”
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This article originally appeared on YogiApproved.