Why You Need To Paddle In The Morning | Adventure Kayak Magazine | Rapid Media
Departments
A standup paddleboarder surfs on a wave in the sunlight. Cristian Negroni

Paddling first thing in the morning is good for your body and soul.

Every morning, along your local shoreline, some brave soul is pioneering the day. Cooking up miles for breakfast is a powerful way to start the day, promising benefits for everyone who can keep their finger off the snooze button. That silhouette on the horizon could be you.

“Getting in a paddle before most people are awake gives me a sense of accomplishment that carries me through my day. Regardless of what I face, I’ve already ensured that at least part of my day was my own, enjoy- able and challenging,” says dawn patrol enthusiast and competitive racer John Beausang, the man behind paddleboard e-news source The Distressed Mullet. “Being on the water first thing in the morning connects me to nature and helps me stay grounded,” he adds.

New research suggests that getting out on the water in the golden hour has lasting benefits on your physical and mental capabilities throughout the day. A study by PHIT America measuring performance by students in Illinois saw a 93-percent improvement in math scores and a 56-percent in- crease in reading scores after exercise. “What’s good for kids has to be good for adults, too,” says Jim Baugh, founder of PHIT. “Getting active in the morning wakes up the brain, improves concentration and gets the brain ready to learn and be productive." Plus, it fires out mood-boosting endorphins that stay with you for hours.

Discover the trip of a lifetime with the Rapid Media Paddling Trip Guide

Dawn patrol also offers greater opportunities for consistency. Evening paddling sessions risk being delayed, interrupted or abandoned entirely due to working late, running errands and getting blindsided by unexpected to-dos. There are fewer obstacles to getting on the water at 6 a.m. than at 6 p.m. “I love getting that jumpstart on the day,” says Julian DeSchutter, co- founder of Vancouver-based outdoor group Chasing Sunrise, which organizes 4:30 a.m. adventures that have attracted as many as 800 participants. “Everyone else is still sleeping. By going out at sunrise you’re putting yourself first, and that’s a powerful thing.” The phone isn’t ringing, and there are no distracting emails or texts.

“There is energy at the beginning of the day. A silence,” DeSchutter adds.

Find the world's best boats and gear with the Rapid Media's Paddling Buyer's Guide

Research also shows that morning fitness promotes a better night’s sleep. Appalachian State University’s Dr. Scott Collier studies the effect of exercise on blood pressure. “Much to our surprise, 7 a.m. exercise was better in terms of reduced blood pressure throughout the day and greater sleep benefits than exercise at 7 p.m. There was little blood pressure or sleep benefit when exercise was done at 1 p.m.,” he says. “We don’t yet know the physiological mechanisms that result in these changes, but we do know enough to say if you need to decrease your blood pressure and if you need to increase your quality of sleep, 7 a.m. is probably the best time to exercise,” Collier adds.

Finally, for fitness paddlers who are as motivated by losing weight as setting a new personal best, exercising in the morning boosts your metabolism and keeps it elevated for six to 10 hours afterward—you’ll burn more calories throughout the day thanks to a morning workout. Exercising on a pre-breakfast empty stomach has been shown to burn a greater percentage of fat for fuel, rather than carbohydrates. 

CCC_PartnerBadge_Web.pngKaydi Pyette is the former editor of Canoeroots

Watch THE CANOE an award-winning film that tells the story of Canada's connection to water and how paddling in Ontario is enriching the lives of those who paddle there. #PaddleON.

Enter Your Email

Related items

  • How To Rig Your SUP For Travel Fly Fishing

    How To Rig Your SUP For Travel Fly Fishing

    If you’re a SUP angler, your dream job is to jet-set around the world, fish the most exciting places for the most exciting fish and get paid for it. You’d be dreaming of Damon…

    Read more...

  • Body Glove Mariner Angler ISUP

    Body Glove Mariner Angler ISUP

    Body Glove will be releasing a brand new fishing SUP in 2018, the Mariner. The Mariner was designed by paddling champion, avid fisherman and Body Glove Ambassador Luke Hopkins. It…

    Read more...

  • Badfish SUP Reshapes Future

    Badfish SUP Reshapes Future

    The origin story of Colorado’s original standup paddle board company — Badfish SUP — is adding another chapter. Call it a rebirth. Call it a renaissance. Or, as company co-founder…

    Read more...

  • Red Paddle Co. Tandem SUP

    Red Paddle Co. Tandem SUP

    Red Paddle Co. has solved a problem that has plagued a lot of SUP paddlers. How can you easily paddle with your family? Red Paddle Co. has created a new…

    Read more...

  • Hobie Shows Off New SUPs

    Hobie Shows Off New SUPs

    Hobie brought their 2017-18 line of standup paddleboards to Outdoor Retailer 2017.  First, they have a 10-foot inflatable paddleboard named the Adventure. This is the most versatile board that Hobie…

    Read more...

  • How To Paddle A SUP Safer: Don't Paddle Impaired

    How To Paddle A SUP Safer: Don't Paddle Impaired

    There are few things better than relaxing after a long day and having a few drinks with friends. But paddling impaired is dangerous. Take Jeffrey from this video for instance.…

    Read more...

FREE NEWSLETTER

Join 78 000+ fellow paddlers! Get the latest paddling news and special offers delivered straight to your inbox.  

 

 

Free Issues