Why You Should Wake Up at 4:30 AM Every Day, According To A Navy SEAL

Published on May 13, 2018
With a busy schedule, Jocko Willink finds time to get everything done by waking up before everyone else does. Willink, former Navy SEAL and author of "Way of the Warrior Kid" explains the one habit from service that he can't shake.
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Following is a transcript of the video:
Richard Feloni: Are there some things from your service that you can't shake? So for example, you still wake up at 4:30 in the morning, to go workout, what was it about your time in the Seals, that you wanted to keep these habits up?
Jocko Willink: They're good habits, why would you not wake up at 4:30?
Richard Feloni: Well what does this bring to you?
Jocko Willink: Waking up early? You just get a jump on the day. The reason I wake up at 4:30 in the morning is because no one else is awake yet, so that gives me the opportunity to do things that I need to get done, kinda selfishly for myself, and the big one in that category is working out. And it doesn't feel good at 4:30 when you get up, but by the time 7 o'clock rolls around, and you've already worked out, and you've already got some work done, and you've got some time to say goodbye to your kids before they go to school? It's infinitely better than sleeping in until 6:45, and you get out of bed, and now you've missed your kids going to school, or whatever. You're not prepared for the day, it's awful.
Feloni: So if someone, maybe they don't have time to work out or they just need something that could be like a quick fix, is there something that you recommend?
Willink: Oh yeah, workouts don't have to take a long time. Workouts can be very quick. Matter of fact, go do two minutes of burpees, as many burpees as you can, in two minutes, or four minutes, or six minutes, go and sprint, go and do anything very intensely, for a short period of time and you'll get great benefit out of it.
Feloni: Something I'm sure you hear a lot is 4:30, like this either just can't fit into my schedule, or if I'm gonna be realistic, I'm probably not gonna wake up at 4:30, what do you tell people who say that?
Willink: Yeah, and there's people that work night shifts, and there's people that it's unhealthy for them, they can't fall as-- it's like no, be healthy, get enough sleep, but, first of all, wake up at the same time every day and, if you pick that time and you start waking up at the same time every day, that's very good for you. It doesn't have to be 4:30, it could be 6:30, it could be 7, I don't know what your personal schedule is, but find out a time, pick it, set it, stick to it, and maintain that schedule, and that's gonna end up better for you.
I recommend it's earlier. I recommend that you go to bed earlier, 'cause what are you doing at night, most of the time? Most of the time at night, you're not working on anything super productive, you're just winding down and watching stupid US-tv videos, or surfing the internet, reading clickbait stories, right? Don't do that, instead, go to sleep, and then wake up early.
Feloni: Could you explain that notion of discipline equals freedom?
Willink: If you want more freedom in your life, you have to have more discipline. If you don't have any discipline, you'll end up with absolutely no freedom, you'll end up being a slave to other people that boss you around. There's all kind of problems that can occur, if you don't have discipline in your life. And the more discipline you have, the more freedom you're gonna have.
Feloni: So just the discipline of the Seals, will never-- it's impossible to leave?
Willink: No, it's possible to leave, there's retired seals all over the place that are undisciplined. They've moved on, and they don't care about that anymore. It's fine, I don't judge other people on what they're doin', like they're probably stoked to sleep in and hang out with their kids, and eat breakfast in bed, that's fine. I don't have anything against that. But for me? I wanna get up and go.


  • 2:08.....But...but..you’re on a stupid US-tv video.😐

  • Wake up when your body tells you too simples

  • i use to wake up at 5am because my school 🚍 came at 5:45am

  • I wake up at 3:30 or i piss the bed

  • I that the devils favorite demon

  • I wake up 3am.

  • I wake up 4:30 everyday *Oh did i forget to say pm?*

  • Watching this at 3am lmao

  • At 4:29 am is better

  • I love how he said sleep in till 6:45. Lol. Sleeping in is like noon for me

  • at what time is he sleeping ?

  • Too much weed for me i dont get out of bed till 8

  • Am I missing something? When does he actually go to sleep? Midnight? I mean I could go to bed at 6:30pm and wake up 4:30am every morning easy.

  • sleeping in until 6:45? sleeping in? *NANI!?*

  • Who's here after Casey's upload??

  • You'd have to go to bed at 7:30 to get the recommended 9 hours of sleep, I doubt this guy gets enough sleep

  • Look at his hairline, this dude absorbed Raditz for sure.

  • If I am paid up like a neavy seal then I can also wake like a neavy seal at 4:30 AM.

  • He looks mean

  • Well i mostly wake up at 4:30am. But then i'll get on my laptop or phone and then start playing game or watch movies, literally anything thats not productive. I guess i need a change

  • I'm watching this in 12am

  • I wake up at 2:40 am weekdays. I like to be off work in the early afternoon. If I start at 3:00 am, I'm usually done by 3:00 pm to 4:00 pm.

  • i wake up at 05:45 everyday

  • because thats when the french and indians attack.

  • What do you do when you go to bed late and you’re tired?

  • If I woke up at 4.30am by 5am I'd be in a coma

  • He's right. My grandmother lived 97 years and she always said If you wake up before sun rises, you will never get sick.

  • He looks the brother of kane who didn't get to sleep

  • Sleep 8 hour

  • I wake up at 8.00 and work from 9.00 to 13.30. Then I have the whole rest of the day to do what I damn want to do. That's the way, man. If you're waking up at 4.30... your going to bed... when? 20.00 ??????? For god sake.

  • Basically what Muslims have been doing ...

  • I used to wake up at 4:10 am to get ready for work at 5 am. Saw a couple going for a run at 4:40 am during Jan. 1st. They quit after 2 weeks lol

  • Another stupid US-tv video that's not stupid. Great. Now I'll have to look out for more videos of that kind.

  • u dont need to get up at 4:30am just to workout lol, dumb idea. u only need an hour to workout, you're telling me the only time you can do that is at 4:30am?

  • So he says everyone should wake up at 4:30 then everyone is up at 4:30 which defeats the purpose of you being alone at 4:30

  • Or do what I do 1 get up about 6 2 eat 3 shit 4 wake the family 5 possibly shit again depending on dinner night before 6 don’t say goodbye to anyone just go to work 7 finish work go pub 8 head home depressed that your wife’s still there 9 repeat following day

  • common sense

  • 10:30am 😍😍

  • what a monster

  • Woke up 4:45am work start 7am work end 5pm school start 6pm school end 9pm reach home 10pm get to sleep at 11pm Reason why I hate waking up early but I don’t have any choice And I work at construction site

  • Muslims have been doing this .

  • He probably falls asleep at 7pm. Look at this mans face. Looks tired af.

  • I recommend sleeping 6hrs. That gives you a full sleep cycle so you don't have to wake up during a cycle and feel worst then you went to bed

  • I wake up at 4:45 in the morning every day because highschool

  • "sleeping in until 6:45"

  • Good advise from Tito Ortiz brother.

  • I bet his wife's cheating on him with a guy who wakes up at 7am ...

  • They say the most successful people are morning people.

  • That guys face looks like he needs some sleep.

  • So many people in these comments are intentionally misunderstanding what hes saying or have an inability to listen at all.

  • 4:30 am is for NOOBS. I wake up at 6am but 2 days earlier! So I have extra 48h while everyone else is still sleeping!

  • He obviously doesnt look tired at all 😌

  • Tried this. Never got past the snooze

  • Preach!

  • Sleeping in until 6:45 lol

  • Well i think all Moslem who want Prayers would wake up earlier for they call Subuh pray

  • That’s a great idea if you single with no kids, work a 9 to 5 job and you don’t work shift work overnight.

  • Im going to bed at 4:30am whoops...

  • I wake up at 5am. Close enough.

  • this guy looks tired

  • Watching this at 00:00 lmao

  • "if you get up at 6:45... It's just awful" Dog I wake up at 9

  • I wake up at 4 30 to pee and go back to sleep, that's my work out

  • I wake up everyday at 6AM. and now my body wakes up at that time even at weekends. (go to sleep around mindight or half past)

  • this doesn't work if you work from 9am to 11pm, you can wake up 4am but you'll be really tired, very unhealthy

  • go to bed e-e-early? wake up at 4:30? hold my beer

  • "Stupid US-tv videos". Yeah, like this one

  • I'm only watching this so I can wake up to watch the AMA'S I recorded lol.

  • I like how he’s not in your face about any of it. Aggressive but not overbearing. This guy is a great speaker

  • So you need to have an unhealthy sleep schedule in order to be productive during the day?

  • I go to work at 5am, and on weekends i go to sleep around 5am 💁

  • So i been in the military and i have been home trained. And I must say the freedom is nice.....js.

  • Man this guy is on point

  • I wake up at 4:30 am every morning!

  • *people in school think this is childs play*

  • I wake up to pee at 4:30 then go back to sleep.

  • "sleeping in till 6:45" sleeping in for me is 3pm 😂

  • silly you, I take a jump on the night by waking up late

  • I hate people buying into his crap advice just because he was a SEAL. Going to bed at 9pm and waking up at 4:30am is just plain stupid for most people.

  • Every night you think of waking up early and you spend up a lot of time on watching such inspiration video but all to vein. Instead just sleep now wake up early. Gn

  • I've been going to bed at 8-ish for the past year and wake up anywhere from 3am-6am depending on activity during day or previous wake up... No alarm ever. So good. Wouldn't wish anything else.

  • Whack off and go back to sleep cuz the wife isn't having any.

  • And here I am at 2 am watching stupid youtube videos.

  • Yeh wake up at 04.30 everyday and be chin strapped by 1600 in the afternoon makes sense...

  • This one of the benefits of waking up for Fajr

  • I wake up at 4.30 AM shuts off the alarm and sleep again

  • Last bonfire night me and my friends were all tired so we decided to go to sleep at 8pm. Me: That was an amazing sleep, goes into lounge "Wanna play rockband?" Looks at phone, it's 3:45am. Tiptoes around house, waits for friends to get up at 8am.

  • Arbeit macht frei

  • Why wake up at 4:30 if you can sleep 10 minutes less, and wake up at 4:20?

  • Who else rather sleeps at 4:30 than wake up?

  • Should've done 10 minute early. 4:20 ma dawg \//\/

  • Except he doesn't even say what the title does...

  • So basically he can’t give a good reason for waking up at 4:30 lol dude I’ll enjoy my sleep ins until 7 and my body will enjoy the extra rest you can enjoy your 6pm nap times lol

  • Dude I get 3 hours asleep every night since I was born. My mom said it was hard as he'll on her to keep up with my schedule.

  • I wake up 4:30 but work at 5:30. Guess I need to wake up 2:30.

  • 330 every day

  • This shit is a joke. I like to wake up at 11

  • Wake up at 4:20 that will help. You could say its your high of the day.

  • Doesn’t say what time to sleep at

  • 1:29 thank you for not dismissing night owls and label them as lazies