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Is it 'Safe' to Do Powerlifting in the Morning?

Hi guys

I’ve recently started a new business which is taking up most of my evenings and nights.

I’m struggling to find enough time to do proper workouts and it’s frustrating the hell out of me!!!

I had considered getting up early in the mornings and doing the workouts before I go to work instead.

I was thinking of getting up @ 5.30am and doing the workout @ 6.00am

My question is…is it dangerous to do powerlifting style exercise so early after waking and rising?

I’m thinking just of the dangers of the body not being ready to cope with strenuous activity that early.

Any advice or experience on this guys?


Imo, it’s easier to lift first thing in the morning; as your ‘whiney’ senses aren’t fully active making it easier to mindlessly do the reps as prescribed.

You should stretch + warmup and you will be fine.

Do you currently have a warmup/static-stretching/foam-rolling routine?

My warm up routine consists of some light rep work.

I prefer to foam roll and stretch after workouts.

It might take a couple workouts for you to mentally get used to working out that early. There’s no reason for not being able to, many people workout at that time or even earlier without issue. It’s not like your body “shuts down” and it’s not like you’re literally rolling out of bed into a squat rack, you have a bit to wake up.

I would look into a more elaborate warmup as it’s extremely beneficial especially if injury-prevention is on the fore-front of your mind.

I do most of my training at 6 am. There are no dangers other than not getting a proper warm-up. On deadlift and squat day I do about 5 sets with the bar, then do 5-6 sets with about 10% jumps until I reach the 5/3/1 sets. Pound some coffee if You need it.

I remember reading an article some time ago about it being dangerous lifting that early due to spinal fluid not being properly circulated or something…

Can’t find the article now though.

Just don’t personally know of any powerlifters who lift in the morning. All the guys I know who workout in the morning are cardio bunnies!

I have been lifting exclusively In the morning for the past year. I wake up at 5:15 and by 6:00 I am doing the agile 8 as a warm up. Yesterday by 6:30 I was doing top half squats with 455. My back feels great.

Lift in the morning, it’s the best way to go!

I know The article you are talking about, but by the time I am done brewing my coffee, taking my morning shit and showering, my spine is back to its normal position with the fluid pushed out.

I would give your body at least 1/2 hr of standing time before hitting the weights to help push the fluid out, if you are really concerned about it. Of course if anything doesn’t feel right, listen to your body and change your approach.

Cheers for all the replies guys!!!

Looks like it’s green light for morning workouts!


If you read Stuart McGill’s stuff he talks about loading the spine being more dangerous first thing in the morning because overnight your discs swell up a bit because they are not being compressed by gravity. I don’t think the extra risk is all that significant and I don’t think it takes long being up and moving to that risk to return to normal. I have gone through periods of lifting in the morning and never had an issue. Even if this is true, if you lift with proper technique it should be a non-issue anyways.

As you get through your warmup sets, they should help to speed up the spinal compression before you get to the heavy stuff

As you get through your warmup sets, they should help to speed up the spinal compression before you get to the heavy stuff

I prefer morning. If I wait until after work then I feel lazy/tired and a lot less likely to do it. It’s a bitch to get up early at first but you get used to it. And you feel so much better when it’s done! Ready to tackle anything the day throws at you.

I’ve been training “John Broz style” or “Beyond 5/3/1 Training maximally” for two years, and usually I squat my daily (or training) max one hour after waking up. No back problem so far.

For warm-up, I took Jim’s advice: De Franco’s “Agile 8” is quick and effective.

If its your only option, that is your answer.